Pennsylvania gets new budget more than week ahead of schedule

Governor Tom Wolf signed the spending plan into law Friday night. 

Tony Romeo
June 22, 2018 - 2:52 pm
Pennsylvania Capitol
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HARRISBURG, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) -- More than a week ahead of the deadline, Pennsylvania has a new budget. Governor Tom Wolf signed the spending plan into law Friday night. 

Last year, the budget bill was passed on time, but lawmakers and Governor Wolf labored for months to come up with a revenue package to fully fund it. Republican Pat Browne, the Appropriations chair, spoke just before the Senate gave final approval to this year’s budget bill.

“What a difference a year makes,” Browne said.

Unlike last year, revenues this year are living up to projections. Philadelphia’s Vincent Hughes, ranking Democrat on the Appropriations Committee, called it a "solid document."

“We would have liked to have seen few other things," Hughes said. "But this is the document given the political reality that exists at this time, but also given the reality of a willingness to work together across the aisle.”

The budget provides $100 million more for basic education and school safety initiatives. There's is also increased funding for early childhood and higher education.

“Lincoln University, Temple University, University of Pittsburgh and Penn State University, our community colleges and, of course, our state system universities,” Hughes said.

The budget also makes a modest deposit into a “rainy day” fund.