HARRISBURG –Sen. Pat Stefano (R-32) issued the following statement following the budget address that Gov. Josh Shapiro delivered today to a joint session of the General Assembly:
“Today’s budget address gives us an idea about what we can expect from Gov. Shapiro during his time in office. While his priorities do not exactly match mine, I am cautiously optimistic that, given his prior experience as a state representative, he understands we must work together to come to a final solution in the best interest of Pennsylvanians.
“One priority we share is making a good education accessible for all students in the commonwealth. Of course, we must remember that everything comes at a cost and taxpayers have to pay the bill. At a time when people are struggling financially, the answer has to be respectful of the fiscal limitations faced by families everywhere.
“However, he did acknowledge that we need to focus on making it easier for workers to get family-sustaining jobs in the commonwealth. To make that happen, Pennsylvania’s business climate needs to become much more competitive with those of neighboring states. My Republican colleagues in the Senate and I will work toward that goal by improving our tax structure and focusing on workforce development, particularly so working adults can advance their careers.
“Of course, today’s budget address is simply the beginning of the budget process. As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I will actively review all of the budget recommendations made by the Shapiro administration.
“We already know the spending level in Gov. Shapiro’s plan would almost completely deplete the state’s $5 billion Rainy Day Fund by 2027-28. Spending the money set aside for emergencies is not only reckless, but also not sustainable long term. Protecting taxpayers from irresponsible spending will always be my top priority, especially given the looming fiscal cliff.”
CONTACT: Jake Gery