Harrisburg – February 6, 2018 – Senate Democratic Appropriations Chair Vincent J. Hughes (D-Philadelphia/Montgomery) issued the following statement regarding the governor’s $32.9 billion General Fund budget proposal for 2018-2019. The proposed budget represents a 3.1 percent increase.

Gov. Tom Wolf delivered his budget address before a joint session of the General Assembly today.

Hughes’ comments follow:

“It’s time for a new deal for a new Pennsylvania. The governor’s budget is a solid, principled plan that calls for an additional $225 million investment in education, new dollars earmarked for workforce development, job creation and an infusion of funds for manufacturing, which has been a key priority of Senate Democrats.

“The spending plan focuses on supporting women and families through $25 million earmarked to expand child care, plus the governor has called for addressing the gender wage gap, guaranteeing sick leave and boosting the minimum wage. Making sure safety net programs are fully funded, investing in schools and children and helping our most vulnerable is appropriate, and this budget plan addresses those critical needs.

“The budget is chalk full of common sense and responsible policy ideas that provide a framework that lawmakers can use to develop a forward-looking budget that helps families. It is fiscally responsible, and calls for shale drillers to pay their fair share, without further burdening working families.”