For Immediate Release
Brubaker Supports Passage of 2012-13 State Budget
HARRISBURG The Senate approved a 2012-13 state budget today that restores a number of the governor's proposed cuts to education, social services and agriculture programs while holding the line on taxes, according to Sen. Mike Brubaker (R-36).
The $27.656 billion spending plan represents a modest 1.4-percent increase over the current year's spending. The budget does not include any increase in broad-based state taxes.
"Tax rates and fiscal health are important considerations for employers who are looking to expand or relocate to our communities, so it is essential to budget responsibly and sustainably without new taxes," Brubaker said. "Holding the line on taxes for families and businesses is a positive step toward returning our state and region to sustained economic growth."
The budget would halt the transfer of $72 million from the Race Horse Development Fund to the General Fund and restore funding for several important agricultural programs, most notably the state's farmland preservation program.
Senate Bill 1466 fully restores funding for Pennsylvania's state-related universities and State System of Higher Education schools. The restorations will ensure the schools hold tuition rates at or below the rate of inflation.
The budget also includes $149 million in additional support for local school districts. The increases include additional funding for Accountability Block Grants, Pre-K Counts, Head Start Assistance, the Education Improvement Tax Credit program and a new scholarship program targeting students in the lowest-achieving schools in the state.
The budget restores $84 million in funding for various county-administered social services programs, reducing by half the Governor's proposed 20 percent reduction in state funding. The budget also restores funding for nursing homes, hospitals, burn centers, critical care hospitals, OB/neonatal hospitals and trauma centers.
Senate Bill 1466 was approved by both the House and Senate and now goes to the governor to be signed into law.