Yaw Votes For Fiscally Responsible Budget

House Bill 2279 restrains state spending, avoids tax increases

The Senate today approved a state budget bill that keeps spending in check while maintaining state services and programs without imposing a broad-based tax increase, according to Senator Gene Yaw (R-Lycoming), who voted for the measure.

Yaw said House Bill 2279 reduces spending by $1 billion from the governor’s original request in February and includes a total revenue increase of less than 1 percent – reflecting the recession the state and nation are facing.

“We reduced spending to below what we spent two years ago –something that has not been accomplished in recent history in this state,” Yaw said.  “We met our commitment to pass a budget on time and did so without tax increases that could have hurt Pennsylvanians who are already struggling in this economic recession.   It was fair, fiscally responsible and will not burden our citizens with higher taxes and deeper debt.” Yaw said that while the budget keeps spending down, it does include an increase in funding for education and ensures that the state continues to fund core government programs and services.

Senate Republicans successfully opposed the Governor’s request to impose millions of dollars in new taxes.  Rendell proposed the elimination of 74 current sales tax exemptions, which would have dramatically impacted family budgets and many small businesses that are struggling to stay in operation during the current economic downturn.

“We cannot take more money from families and businesses at a time when Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate is at 9.1 percent and many counties are above 10 percent,” Yaw said.

Yaw said the final budget also reflects cooperation among legislators throughout the state who were determined to pass a budget that was fair and on time so that programs and services that rely on state funding were not impacted.

Contact: Rita Zielonis
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