Pennsylvania Governor Set To Unveil Next Year’s Budget Proposal Despite Current Budget Issues

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf is poised to roll out his 2016-2017 budget proposal Tuesday and it’s expected to include a tax increase for education funding despite much of the current budget still being up in the air.

The Democratic politician line vetoed much of the $30.3 billion budget passed by state lawmakers in December, calling the measure “garbage.”

“My proposed budget provides a clear vision for a promising future for our state. It assumes the bipartisan budget agreement that proved elusive in December is ultimately enacted this year,” the governor said in his budget preview. “It provides a plan for 2016-17 that meets our needs and continues to restore the cuts to our schools.”

The measure passed last year raised the state’s spending levels on schools, but fell short of the $30.8 billion budget the governor wanted.

The Democrat did, however, ok $23.3 billion in emergency spending to prevent school closures for six months and provide funds for medical assistance and corrections institutions, according to the statement from the governor’s office.

According to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, his upcoming proposal is expected to total around $32 billion to cover automatic pension payment increases and balance the budget, which he plans to cover through increases to the state’s income and sales taxes.

Last October, the governor floated a 16 percent increase to the taxes, which was not met well by Republicans in the Keystone State.

He will be the first Pennsylvania governor to propose a budget while the previous year’s remains unresolved, the paper reports.

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