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900-920 Water Street
Downtown Mall
Meadville, PA  16335
Phone (814) 336-1136
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Hon. Brad Roae
151 East Wing
Harrisburg PA 17120-2006
Phone: (717) 787-2353
Fax: 717-782-2902


Roae Votes Against ‘Worst Budget in PA History’

Rep. Brad Roae (R-Crawford) today voted against what he referred to as “perhaps the worst budget in Pennsylvania history,” saying it spends too much and in the wrong areas.


“State budgets are about priorities,” Roae said.  “This budget sets the wrong priorities for Pennsyvlania.”


The more than $28 billion budget includes $25.3 billion in state spending and an additional $2.7 billion in federal stimulus funding.


The $25.3 billion in state spending is based on a presumption that state revenues will increase by 3 percent this year.  Roae noted that Gov. Ed Rendell’s administration has overestimated tax revenues for 25 out of the last 26 months.


“It is hard to take the governor’s tax projections seriously,” Roae said.  “He’s built a near perfect streak of being wrong.”


The state budget also assumes the U.S. Congress will add to the national deficit by approving billions of dollars in addition borrowing.  Approximately $850 million of the $2.7 billion in federal funding counted in the state budget has not yet been approved in Washington, D.C.


“This budget literally spends money the state doesn’t have,” Roae said.  “This budget is based on the hope of a federal bailout for the state.  If the federal government runs up the deficit to pay for this bailout, taxpayers will be paying for it for years to come.”


Roae also noted a disparity in education funding.  Under the budget bill, local school districts will receive the following increases:


  • Conneaut School District:  $287,000; 2.57 percent.
  • Crawford Central School District:  $815,000; 5.13 percent.
  • Penncrest School District:  $474,000; 2.51 percent.
  • Titusville Area School District:  $396,000; 2.96 percent.


These funding increases are miniscule compared to the $64 million, or 6.35 percent, increase in funding for the School District of Philadelphia.


“Philadelphia schools receive more than $1 billion from the state,” Roae said.  “That school district receives more money than some departments in the state budget that are charged with serving residents across the Commonwealth.”


While the School District of Philadelphia fared well, some worthy programs suffered significant cuts in the current state budget.


Funding for Pennsylvania fairs was cut in half, from $2 million to $1 million.  Funding for the Department of Agriculture was cut by nearly $5 million.  Spending on environmental protection programs was cut by more than $13 million and funding for state parks was reduced by nearly $4 million.


Meanwhile, state spending for the Department of Public Welfare will decrease by a meager $64 million, a cut of only 0.7 percent.  Spending on the House of Representatives will decrease by only $1 million, while state Senate spending will be reduced by a mere $119,000.


“This budget doesn’t reflect my priorities and it certainly doesn’t reflect the wishes of the people I represent,” Roae said.  “We needed to reduce spending due to the recession, but the cuts in this budget weren’t applied fairly.  This budget sets up huge tax increases or painful spending cuts for next year.  I simply could not support a budget that is this irresponsible.”


The budget now heads to Gov. Ed Rendell’s desk for his signature.


Rep. Brad Roae
6th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
(814) 827-6054
(717) 787-2353

Contact: Dan Massing

(717) 772-9845

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