The Senate concurred Wednesday (December 11) on House amendments to legislation introduced by Senator Elder Vogel that will remove an undue burden on Pennsylvania farmers. Senate Bill 638, which would ensure that high tunnel greenhouses are not considered permanent structures and categorized as real estate for tax purposes, now goes to the Governor for his signature and enactment into law.
High tunnels, also known as hoop houses, are steel pipe frames covered by plastic that have a variety of agricultural purposes including plant protection, livestock housing, and storage.
“I am pleased that we are taking this step to help Pennsylvania’s farmers. Hoop houses extend their growing season so farming families can improve the profitability of their farms. Growers can start their season 4 to 8 weeks earlier in the spring and extend the season 2 to 5 weeks later in the fall,” said Senator Vogel, Chairman of the Senate Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee. “Subjecting these temporary structures to taxation places an onerous financial burden on farming families that can more than erase any profits they may realize from using high tunnels in the first place.”