Statement by Senate Leaders on Gov. Wolf’s Decision To Release State Funding Approved by Legislature

(HARRISBURG)Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-25), Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-34), Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Pat Browne (R-16) and Senate Majority Whip John Gordner (R-27) released the following statement on Governor Wolf’s decision today to release emergency funding approved by the legislature to help schools and social service agencies.

“We support the governor’s long-overdue decision to release emergency funding approved by the legislature to help schools and social service agencies. This is something we have been advocating for over many months and is exactly why we sent him a budget last week – to release money that has been collected and is being held by the state to schools and communities.

“We are glad that the Governor has acknowledged that his actions of full vetoes in the past have meant kids and community organizations have been held hostage by his refusal to release funding and that approach is no longer defensible. He could have used this line item veto months ago and avoided this crisis situation.

“This action essentially resets the clock – giving us time to work toward a fiscally responsible spending plan without jeopardizing core government services.

“We have significant differences with this Governor and his calls for increased taxes and spending, and we need to sit down and work through them. We have been negotiating in good faith with him, which is why we are disappointed that he used words like ‘garbage’ and ‘exercise in stupidity’ in his statement.  This kind of name-calling and blaming is not necessary or productive as we work toward compromise.

“Now the Governor must demonstrate leadership to get a complete budget passed. The Senate has approved three budget proposals already, and because of his latest line-item vetoes will need to produce a fourth. It’s long past time for the Administration to embrace and work toward the compromise needed to enact a fiscally responsible state budget. We remain committed to achieving that goal.”

CONTACTS:

Drew Crompton (Senator Scarnati) dcrompton@pasen.gov 717-787-7084
Jenn Kocher (Senator Corman) jkocher@pasen.gov 717-787-1377
Matt Moyer (Senator Browne) mmoyer@pasen.gov 717-787-1349
Todd Roup (Senator Gordner) troup@pasen.gov 717-787-8928