Governor Wolf Takes Steps to Manage State Funds in Absence of Finalized State Budget (Round-Up)
By: Eryn Spangler, Press Assistant
October 06, 2017
Harrisburg, PA – On Wednesday, Governor Wolf held a press conference to address the current lack of a finalized state budget due to repeated failure and obstruction by GOP lawmakers.
“I’ve had enough of the games,” Governor Wolf said. “House Republicans again failed to deliver on a budget agreement. Over the past several months, I have been flexible and patient as they have repeatedly failed to agree amongst themselves on how to approach the budget.”
“They have made it clear that they would rather see me fail than Pennsylvania succeed. In the absence of a compromise revenue plan getting to my desk, I am going to take action to manage our state’s finances.”
The governor explained his plan to manage Pennsylvania’s finances and called for the legislature to immediately vote on the widely supported severance tax proposal.
Take a look at the coverage:
City & State: After Legislators Fail on Revenue Deal, Wolf Will Manage PA Finances
As the latest attempts by the General Assembly to reach agreement on budget-balancing revenue broke down Wednesday, Gov. Tom Wolf announced he is stepping in to balance the commonwealth’s books…“The House Republicans had every opportunity to put a balanced budget on my desk – and they have continuously failed,” said Gov. Wolf. “In the absence of a compromise revenue plan making its way to my desk, I am taking action on my own to manage our state’s finances. I’m going to take immediate steps to address the deficit.”
GoErie.com: Our View: Wolf Takes the Reins in Budget Fight
When a GOP-backed hotel tax and a warehouse tax failed to gain enough support this week, and Republican House members thwarted a move that would have allowed consideration of a shale tax, Wolf intervened. The governor said Wednesday he will take control of state finances in the absence of a revenue plan and borrow $1.25 billion against state Liquor Control Board revenues to keep the state solvent.
Tribune Democrat: Frustrated by House Inaction, Wolf Moves to Balance Books
Moments after the state House rejected a bid to use an obscure procedural move to force action on a tax on gas drillers, Gov. Tom Wolf announced he’s no longer waiting for lawmakers to act and he’s moving on his own. Wolf said he’s asking the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to approve a plan to borrow against the annual payments the liquor system pours into state coffers. The plan will provide the state with $1.25 billion to help balance the books, Wolf said.
Times Tribune: No Deficit of Cheap Tricks
Exasperated Gov. Tom Wolf said Wednesday that he would borrow $1.2 billion against future revenue from the state booze monopoly to keep the state government operating after nearly 100 days without a budget. House Republicans, led by Speaker Mike Turzai of Allegheny County, are responsible for the crisis. Wolf, a Democrat, and the Republican-controlled Senate have agreed on a poor budget compromise that would trade off some regulatory protections for about $100 million in new revenue from a long overdue gas extraction tax as part of an overall package to reduce a $2.2 billion deficit.
FOX 43: Gov. Wolf Makes Effort to Close State’s Budget Gap
Gov. Wolf said “House Republicans have again proven themselves incapable of completing their constitutional duty. So, I’m going to manage the finances of the commonwealth, until the House sees fit to do what it’s supposed to do.” Wolf said he’s now taking matters into his own hands to make up for the state’s $2.2 billion budget gap. Part of that plan includes trimming government services, and borrowing $1.25 billion from the Liquor Control Board.
WJAC: Wolf Blasts House Republicans for ‘Failing to Deliver on Budget’
Wolf said since no budget is in place, he has borrowed profits from the state’s liquor system. Those profits are expected to raise $1.25 billion and will reduce the need for additional temporary borrowing to pay bills. “Although we have yet to discuss the proposal as a Board or begin to delve into details of a potential arrangement, we pledge to work collaboratively with the Governor’s Budget Office to explore a revenue-backed contract to deliver significant immediate revenue while capitalizing on the PLCB’s long-term profitability,” read a portion of a statement from the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board.
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