Real Solutions for Pennsylvania’s Future vs Failed Republican Budget Gimmicks

June 26, 2015

Harrisburg, PA – Throughout negotiations with Senate and House Republicans, Governor Wolf has made it clear that he has three simple priorities to move Pennsylvania forward:

  1. A commonsense severance tax to help fund our schools;
  2. Provide property tax relief to middle-class families and seniors; and
  3. Fix Pennsylvania’s structural budget deficit without gimmicks.

He has said that anything less is unacceptable. We cannot embrace the status quo of a stagnant economy, multiple credit downgrades and a massive budget deficit.

The Republican budget continues the failed policies and gimmicks of the past four years that have led to everyday families struggling, underfunded schools, credit downgrades, and rising property taxes.

This is not a balanced budget. The Republican budget continues their gimmicks:

  • Shifting more than $563 million in current year expenses to next years’ deficit.
  • Ignoring recent cost and revenue adjustments by more than $300 million, including $100 million to pay for lottery funded programs for seniors.
  • Failing to provide more than $187 million for mandated human service programs.
  • After taking into consideration the fine print in the Republican budget, it only provides an additional $8 million for our public schools – essentially nothing. This meager investment is less than 2% of the $500 million needed to restore the damage from Corbett’s cuts.
  • The higher education investments in the Republican budget are so small it will take eight years just to restore the higher education cuts under the Corbett administration.
  • The Republican budget also completely eliminates funding to address a growing Heroin epidemic. The Governor’s budget proposal, provided $2.5 million for two pilot programs:
    • Funding for thousands of lifesaving Naloxone kits will be eliminated leaving first responders without this effective treatment.
    • Funding for counties to provide addiction treatment for thousands of citizens will be eliminated.

We know all too well the result of this type of Republican budgeting:

  • A $2.1 billion structural budget deficit by 2016-17.
  • Numerous credit ratings downgrades.
  • Underfunded schools with higher class sizes and slashed programming.
  • Higher property taxes.

If this Republican gimmick budget is what reaches Governor Wolf’s desk he will veto it.

MEDIA CONTACT: Jeff Sheridan – 717.783.1116

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