HARRISBURG – Today the House Appropriations Committee held its final day of budget hearings. The committee heard from the governor’s Budget Secretary Greg Thall. House Appropriations Chairman Stan Saylor (R-York) issued the following statement:
“As we conclude our three weeks of budget hearings on the governor’s proposed budget for the 2022-23 fiscal year, we’ve learned a lot and confirmed much of what we already knew. As we have grown to expect, his budget proposal is heavy on spending and light on fiscal responsibility.
“The governor presented a $43.7 billion spending plan that would increase state spending by a historic 16.6%. That equates to $17 million per day and $1,055 annually per working Pennsylvanian in new state spending. It is simply indefensible.
“Even worse, the governor uses arbitrary revenue and expenditure estimates to paper over this truth. When his spending plan is run though the Independent Fiscal Office’s numbers, it shows an $800 million deficit in the very next year.
“The Commonwealth finally has money in reserve, thanks to prudent and responsible budgeting under House Republican leadership. Had we accepted the governor’s previous budget proposals, Pennsylvanians would be paying billions in higher taxes and state spending would be at unsustainable levels.
“Instead we moved this Commonwealth forward by increasing our investment in both public education and school choice initiatives; delivering on historic pension reform legislation; and fighting for frontline workers, small businesses, families and students in the wake of the governor’s unilateral pandemic-era rule.
“The governor’s massive spending spree would squander the entirety of our reserves and leave the next governor with massive budget deficits, with no reserves to combat it, and would guarantee the need to raise taxes or cut services.
“One thing that has become abundantly clear throughout the process of these hearings is that even the governor’s own secretaries have a hard time explaining the governor’s budget – at times not even aware of proposed increases within their own budgets.
“Working with the members who serve on my committee, we already started crafting a more responsible budget that makes targeted investments in our schools and our most vulnerable, while respecting taxpayers and planning for our fiscal future.”
Representative Stan Saylor
94th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives