Keeping a promise to protect Pennsylvanians today and in the future, Speaker of the House Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster) supported, and helped craft, a state budget that makes historic investments to move the state forward while ensuring there will be no need for tax increases going forward.
“We are all aware of the challenges facing Pennsylvanians as inflation continues to impact every purchase they make,” Cutler said. “That’s why it became our key goal not to add to that crisis in any way. This budget controls spending by using federal relief dollars and making targeted investments that respect every taxpayer dollar.”
The budget answers the call to provide all children with the tools necessary to succeed by funding public schools at their highest levels in state history. However, it also recognizes standard public schools are not the only option and provides $405 million in the Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC), which opens educational opportunities to thousands of children who otherwise would not have access to certain schools.
“Our caucus has long understood that a child’s ZIP code should never predetermine their outcome in life,” Cutler added. “The EITC program has proven to be a vital tool in helping children find the right match for their personal educational needs.”
The budget makes a $2.1 billion deposit into the state’s Rainy Day Fund, the largest such deposit in the Commonwealth’s history, promising taxpayers that as the economic challenges may continue to grow, they will not be asked to pick up the tab.
It also uses federal relief dollars to make significant investments in stream cleanup, funding conservation districts and other programs to help our state meet Chesapeake Bay watershed goals. Additionally, the budget addresses the ongoing bird flu crisis, providing $25 million for impacted farmers and additional funds to improve testing.
“Lancaster County has been ground zero for the current bird flu pandemic and the impact on food prices is being felt up and down the east coast,” Cutler said. “The farmers and their thousands of employees need this vital assistance now, and I applaud my fellow members in supporting this crucial funding.”
Along with the state budget, the House also advanced a package of constitutional amendments that would allow voters to ultimately decide how they choose to be governed.
The following amendments were passed in Senate Bill 106
• Clarifies that abortions are not a right provided in the state Constitution, and that taxpayer funds may not be used for abortion.
• Requires valid ID to be presented to cast an election ballot.
• Requires the Auditor General to complete audits of Pennsylvania election results.
• Allows the Legislature the authority to disapprove of regulations.
• Allow candidates for Governor to choose their own Lieutenant Governor nominee.
Constitutional amendments must be passed in two consecutive sessions, published publicly statewide, and then approved by a voter referendum.
Speaker Bryan Cutler
100th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Mike Straub