HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Legislation introduced by State Senator Doug Mastriano would temporarily divert sports gambling revenue towards property tax relief.

Senate Bill 1117 aims to help homeowners and families cope with the financial difficulties associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Currently, revenue from sports betting is diverted toward the state’s General Fund. Mastriano’s proposal would re-allocate those funds toward property tax relief, where other gambling dollars are funneled.

“Pennsylvania home owners already face high property taxes, and the COVID-19 pandemic will only worsen that reality,” said Mastriano. “With a mandated shutdown of businesses that are not ‘life-sustaining,’ many Pennsylvania families find themselves out of work with no income, and have voiced concern about paying their property taxes,” continued Mastriano. “It is imperative that we help our citizens now during their greatest time of need, and temporarily re-allocate sports betting revenue toward property tax relief,” he added.

The legislation was recently assigned to the Senate Community, Economic & Recreational Development Committee.

Mastriano noted that when gambling was authorized under the Rendell Administration, citizens were promised that revenues would be used to offset property taxes. There are currently no major sports being contested right now, but an uptick in betting is possible once professional and other athletic contests resume competition.