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Corbett Budget Proposal Steers Pennsylvania in the Wrong Direction: No Action on PA’s Top Priority - - - JOBS!
$27.14 billion spending plan offers no job creation or economic development investment, includes devastating cuts to education and human services
On February 7, Governor Tom Corbett gave his budget address and revealed his proposal for the 2012-13 state spending plan. This plan is filled with devastating cuts to basic and higher education, as well as critical programs and services for Pennsylvania’s low and middle income citizens. With this budget address, Governor Corbett has once again proven he is disconnected from Pennsylvania citizens.
Pennsylvania’s job creation has been stagnant, economic development is at a standstill and public education – which is still dealing with last year’s billion dollar body blow – is getting hit again. We are also dealing with a costly transportation infrastructure crisis that is not only a public safety hazard, but a serious fiscal issue as well.
It is these issues that must be at the forefront of budget discussions if we are to invest in Pennsylvania’s future. Instead, the governor’s proposal further impedes the economic and education progress that Pennsylvania’s enjoyed over the last decade.
The Governor’s $27.14 billion budget proposal does not invest in job creation or economic development, instead it shifts tax increases to local taxpayers and does a serious disservice to seniors, students, children and working families.
| Responding to Governor Tom Corbett’s budget address, which lacks a plan to stimulate Pennsylvania’s economy, Senate Democratic Appropriations Chair Sen. Vincent J. Hughes held a news conference to discuss a plan to boost job creation and economic investment in Pennsylvania. Click below to watch segmants of the news conference.
We are no longer a national leader in new job creation – we’ve moved from 7th just last February, to trailing the national average today. The fact that Governor Corbett’s proposal has no plan for job creation is startling, in light of this fact.
Last year, Corbett cut more than $130 million out of programs to create jobs. This year he is proposing even more cuts that would put Pennsylvania even further behind job creation efforts of other states.
Job training in Pennsylvania continues to struggle. After $15 million in cuts to job training programs last year, more cuts could be on the way, jeopardizing valuable federal dollars that could help train workers for real, family sustaining jobs.
- A proposed $400 million in new cuts to early learning programs, targeted programs for struggling students, and higher education.
- With these cuts, the financial crisis facing Chester-Upland School District will soon become a reality for more school districts throughout Philadelphia and the entire commonwealth.
- This plan would hurt schools through program and staff elimination, force spikes in class sizes and cause increases in property taxes.
- Our children, our public education system, our economy and our future work force are at stake.
- Corbett is proposing 20 and 30 percent cuts to Pennsylvania’s higher learning institutions.
- The result will be higher tuition costs, putting higher education out of reach for even more of Pennsylvania’s promising students.
- The Corbett budget slashes funding for state-related schools – Penn State, Pitt, and Temple by 30 percent.
- State System schools – West Chester, Indiana, Slippery Rock, Kutztown and others would receive 20 percent in cuts.
Help for Those in Need
Pennsylvania’s social safety net is struggling, and this will only get worse if the governor’s budget proposal is enacted.
- The governor proposes more than $600 million in cuts for human services programs. Due to the recession, the demand for these kinds of programs has increased dramatically.
- Under the Corbett Administration, there have already been more than a hundred thousand recipients cut from access to health care and threats to cut individuals from access to other assistance under the guise of rooting out waste and fraud.
The governor has not found this alleged $400 million in waste and abuse, yet he still plans to cut $600 million from Pennsylvania’s most vulnerable.
- 60,000 people to lose financial help
- Seniors and those struggling with health issues, disabilities and mental illness are in jeopardy of losing access to county administered programs due to $170 million in proposed cuts to these programs.
Our transportation infrastructure is crumbling. This fact has been well documented throughout Pennsylvania. The governor has indicated that action will be taken on this public safety issue at a later date.
- We are in need of at least $2.5 billion in new revenues, according to the governor’s commission, to address this issue. The cost will only continue to grow as the years go on. We must take action now!
- With 4,890 structurally deficient bridges in Pennsylvania, a solution is imperative. Public safety is at stake.
We must invest in Pennsylvania’s future. It begins with making smart, innovative decisions, making better use of existing resources and securing our financial future with critical investments in education from preschool to college, and ensuring we have the future trained workforce we need to compete in today’s economy.
We must have an economic plan that is thoughtful and balanced. We cannot survive on a cut everything mentality; we must create a growth economy.
I am committed to moving Pennsylvania forward. We need to have the right priorities and make smarter decisions. And as always, we must put the people of PA first.
Click here to view senate budget hearing schedule.
You can find out more specifics about the 2012-13 State Budget and provide your feedback on my website at senatorhughes.com as well as on Facebook and Twitter (@SenatorHughes).
Offices of State
Senator Vincent Hughes