Governor Corbett is relying on rosy economic projections to support the budget proposal he rolled out this past week.
Charles Zogby says one big area of growth is teacher and state employee pension increases of more than $600 million. And he says Gov. Corbett is still hopeful for pension reform.
The money had been approved by the state legislature this year but held up by the Corbett administration, which said the money was contingent on whether the school district obtained sufficient concessions from the Philadelphia teachers’ union.
State budget secretary Charles Zogby, in a statement, said concessions from the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers must be negotiated before that cash is released.
Governor Corbett is likely to propose changes to future pension benefits for current workers when he rolls out his plan to reduce the spiking cost of pensions for school and state employees.
In his mid-year briefing, Pennsylvania’s budget secretary says the outlook for the rest of the fiscal year is status quo but that the budget for the new fiscal year may be the toughest one yet.
The state House and Senate have wrapped up several weeks of budget hearings and leaders from both chambers are predicting a spending plan will be approved on schedule for the first time in years.
During state House budget hearings, Delaware County Democrat Greg Vitali continued to press for the Democrats’ Holy Grail: a tax on natural gas extraction in the state’s Marcellus Shale regions.
The final numbers are in for March, and Pennsylvania’s revenue collections remain on target for the fiscal year that ends June 30th.
Governor Tom Corbett’s budget secretary today prepared Pennsylvania residents for some pain in next week’s budget address.