March, 2015 | RKL LLP
Posted on: March 17th, 2015

RKL Among Nation’s Top CPA Firms


RKL was recently recognized among the nation's "Top 100" CPA firms by Accounting Today.

RKL was recently recognized among the nation’s “Top 100” CPA firms by Accounting Today.

LANCASTER, PA (March 17, 2015) — A familiar name in accounting and business consulting services in the Central and Eastern Pennsylvania region was again recognized by Accounting Today on its “2015 Top 100 Firms” list. Reinsel Kuntz Lesher (RKL), Certified Public Accountants and Consultants claimed the 70th position on the list of top 100 firms.

In addition to its “Top 100” ranking, RKL was also named the 14th largest CPA firm in the Mid-Atlantic region, on a list dominated by metropolitan-based firms from Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey.

“It’s only through the growth and success of our clients that we’re able to continue to rank among the nation’s top CPA firms. It speaks to the trust our clients put in us and our commitment to enriching the lives of our clients, team, and communities,” commented Edward W. Monborne, CEO of RKL.

Contributing to the firm’s 2014 growth was the addition of two new office locations in Downtown Harrisburg and Carlisle and an expanded presence in the Greater Capital Region.In addition, the firm launched an investment banking entity, RKL Capital Advisors LLC, and the firm’s wholly-owned IT subsidiary, RKL eSolutions, experienced significant growth in its Sage ERP practice, expanding its team and company presence throughout the nation.

The firm has also experienced growth in various services areas including audit, business valuations, cost segregation, forensic/fraud accounting, litigation support, mergers and acquisitions, international tax and others. Additionally, RKL’s client base saw growth in the manufacturing/distribution, nonprofit, construction/real estate development and government sectors, among several others.

Posted on: March 4th, 2015

The Tax impact of Gov Wolf’s PA Budget Proposal

Governor Wolf taxes budget proposal

Newly elected PA Governor Tom Wolf presented a budget proposal with several key tax changes expected to impact businesses and individuals.

Newly elected Governor Tom Wolf presented his first budget proposal on Tuesday in Harrisburg, which included numerous comprehensive tax provisions that will impact local businesses and individual taxpayers.

The budget proposal is aimed at key initiatives identified by the Governor including eliminating the state budget deficit, restoring funding for the state pension system, increasing revenues for education spending, creating new jobs and reducing state property taxes.  It also includes provisions that will increase the aggregate tax burden for certain taxpayers.

The budget proposal includes the following proposed tax changes.  Of course, the ultimate outcome of Wolf’s proposals is unknown at this time, subject to negotiation and passage by the Republican-controlled PA Legislature:

  • A phased-in 50% reduction to the corporate net income (CNI) tax rate over the next three years. Pennsylvania’s 9.99% corporate net income tax rate applicable for C corporations is the highest in the country and can pose a significant detriment to attracting new businesses to the Commonwealth.  This rate reduction will provide a significant return of corporate profits to these businesses.  While the rate reduction appears to be a boon to corporate taxpayers, the reality is that the vast majority of businesses operating in Pennsylvania are organized as flow-through entities such as partnerships or Subchapter S Corporations.  Therefore, earnings from these entities are taxed under the personal income tax system and are not subject to the corporate net income tax.   
  • A 20% increase to the personal income tax rate from 3.07% to 3.7%. Because the Uniformity Clause of the Constitution prevents the state from imposing different rates on different classes of taxpayers, a uniform rate increase will be enacted along with a broader or expanded provision for exemption of low income taxpayers.
  • An increase in the state sales tax rate from 6% to 6.6%, as well as an expansion of the sales tax on services, including professional services. This is definitely one of the most significant and broad-based tax increases that the Governor is proposing. The impact would be felt by all taxpayers. The only exemptions that would survive include food, clothing, and prescription drugs.  At this point, the status of all industry-specific exemptions is unknown.
  • Elimination of the capital stock tax effective January 1, 2016. With the 17-year phase-out and reduction of the rate finally drawing to a close, the impact is negligible.
  • Migrate to a uniform corporate income tax model.  Currently, it is unclear if this reform will be in the form of unitary or consolidated reporting (similar to the federal concept of taxation) or in the form of combined reporting. If unitary or consolidated reporting is enacted, the impact will be much easier to quantify by corporations. This would also serve to eliminate the perceived loophole attributable to  corporate taxpayers that own a Delaware Holding Company to hold intangible assets.  If combined reporting is enacted, complexity will arise regarding the definitions surrounding “combined” business, apportionment methods, recognition of tax attributes, and the like.
  • Reduction to the corporate net income tax net operating loss (NOL) from $5 million (or 30% of net income) to $3 million (or 12.5% of net income). In certain instances, this provision, along with a limited carry forward period already included in the statutes, could cause some companies to lose NOLs  before they have a chance to benefit from them.
  • A 5% extraction tax on natural gas exploration activities. The Governor anticipates that  $1  billion of the estimated annual revenues from this new tax will be invested in the PA communities in which the drilling activities occur.  Additional revenue would help to fund  the Governor’s policy changes impacting all Pennsylvanians.

The tax increases outlined above are intended to fund a variety of Wolf’s policy initiatives, particularly in the area of education funding.   In turn, the Governor suggests that local property taxes will be reduced as a larger portion of education funding is covered by state tax dollars, rather than local tax dollars.

RKL will continue to monitor these developments in Harrisburg as they unfold.  If you have any specific questions regarding your Pennsylvania tax impact, please contact your RKL tax advisor.

frank tobias PA budget state taxesContributed by Frank J. Tobias, CGFM, ( a principal in RKL’s Tax Services Group. He specializes in the area of multi-state planning and compliance with extensive experience in all areas of Pennsylvania taxation. Frank brings a well-rounded perspective on state and local tax issues with his experience in both public accounting and his previous professional experience overseeing the administration of PA Corporation taxes for the PA Department of Revenue.

Posted on: March 2nd, 2015

SFA Hosts Free Sustainable Investing Seminars

sfa_impact_investingWYOMISSING, PA (February 26, 2015) – Investors seeking to align their social values with their investment strategies will have the opportunity to learn about sustainable investing at  two free seminars hosted by Sterling Financial Advisors on Thursday, March 19. Registration for the seminar is now underway.

Both seminars will focus on sustainable investing, an investment discipline that considers environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) criteria to generate long-term competitive returns as well as a positive societal impact. SFA Vice President Laurie Peer, CPA, CFP® will be joined by Julie Gorte, PhD and Mary Anne Majerus-Lambert of Pax World Investments, an internationally recognized leader in sustainable investing.

“Sustainable investing is just as much about maximizing the greater good as it is maximizing financial return,” says Peer. “It’s exciting to offer this to our clients, who embrace the idea that their investments can have a broader positive impact on the world around them.”

Designed for investors of all ages, the morning seminar, “Investing for a Better Tomorrow” will deliver a deeper understanding of how sustainable investing works using statistical evidence and real-life market examples. “Investing for a Better Tomorrow” will be held from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at The Highlands of Wyomissing at 2000 Cambridge Avenue and will include a continental breakfast.

Designed specifically for younger investors, “Impacting Investing for the Millennial Generation” will be held from 12 to 1 p.m. at RKL at 1330 Broadcasting Road and will include lunch. Attendees will learn how to build a strong portfolio that also benefits organizations and initiatives that support their ideals.

For more information or to register, visit or call (610) 376-9561.