Corbett hitting road to sell his budget
HARRISBURG — Republican Gov. Tom Corbett continues to try to build public support for his budget and ideas to bridge the $4.2 billion deficit, planning appearances in Pittsburgh, Erie and Chester County.
House Republicans intend to introduce a variation of Corbett's budget proposal in a week or so. That budget would be near Corbett's proposed budget cap of $27.3 billion in state spending, GOP leaders said.
"The House is determined to do an on-time, no-tax-increase budget," said Majority Leader Mike Turzai, R-Bradford Woods. "We're going to move in a thorough and deliberate manner. We certainly are going to work within the parameters of the governor's $27.3 billion spending limit."
House Majority Whip Stan Saylor, R-York County, said lawmakers would attempt to reduce the proposed 50 percent cuts to higher education that Corbett outlined. They will attempt to replace that revenue by cutting the Department of Public Welfare, he said.
Corbett has said he supports various anti-fraud measures GOP lawmakers are pushing, but said the money those measures would save the welfare department must be real and apply to the 2011-12 budget.
Corbett is traveling to promote his budget proposal and "explain to people this is about jobs and reducing the size and cost of state government," said his spokesman, Kevin Harley. "It's about creating an economic environment that allows business to grow and prosper."
Corbett is scheduled to visit Google's office in Larimer on Tuesday, Harley said. He'll be in Erie on Wednesday and in Chester County the next day.
University students across the state have rallied to oppose proposed cuts for state-related and state-owned universities. Corbett's critics question why the governor refuses to consider an extraction tax on natural gas from the Marcellus shale formation.
Corbett told a meeting of the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors last week that Pennsylvania competes with other states and Canada to attract drilling operations, and he thinks it's unfair to levy a tax on one industry.
Senate Democrats last week said they identified $1.1 billion in savings that could be used to pay for their priorities, such as restoring adultBasic or state-subsidized health insurance for the working poor and erasing the higher-education cuts. They want a gas extraction tax.
Harley said Corbett uses a football analogy to explain the budget:
The first quarter was his preparation and presentation of the budget, which would cut state spending by 3.1 percent. The second quarter, marked by Senate and House appropriation hearings on every major agency, is over. The third quarter will involve "budget negotiations with the four caucuses" — Democrats and Republicans in both legislative chambers. In the fourth quarter, lawmakers will vote to enact a budget.
For the past eight years under former Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell, lawmakers debated budgetary matters beyond the June 30 deadline. In 2009, they apologized when their debate extended 101 days beyond deadline. They met the deadline last year, but Rendell didn't sign the budget into law until July 6.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Upper St. Clair family’s efforts pay off as governor signs Down syndrome education bill
- Mother, maternal grandparents charged in abuse of Mercer County boy
- Gov. Corbett signs Pennsylvania state budget, vetoes legislative funding