Phillips-Hill: Budget proposal exceeds 4 percent growth, banks on higher natural gas taxes

HARRISBURG – Senator Kristin Phillips-Hill (R-York) released the following statement regarding Governor Wolf’s 2020-2021 state budget proposal, which he presented before a joint session of the General Assembly on Tuesday:

“This budget proposal includes runaway spending, no plan to address our cost-drivers, a hit to local farmers and a continued call for increased taxes on natural gas.

“While today represents the starting point to state budget negotiations, I am very concerned about budgetary spending growth that would take our state budget over $36 billion, coupled with an ax to important programs within our state Department of Agriculture. Meanwhile the governor continues to roll in overspending from our current budget into next year’s budget, which over the past two years has exceeded $1.4 billion.“Taxpayers have had enough of the shenanigans – when we agree to a budget at the end of June, the state must live within its means. If the governor wants to spend more than that agreed to amount, he should absolutely have to have that appropriation pass the General Assembly in the same manner the budget is approved. That is why Representative Grove and I have proposed a constitutional amendment to shore up our budgetary process because these gimmicks are leading us to a point of no return for taxpayers.

“Finally, I wish the governor fought as hard for meaningful school property tax elimination like he has for a tax on our natural gas. I will continue to fight for the people who pay our bills to ensure we are not jeopardizing our long-term financial stability by overspending with no accountability.”

You can listen to Senator Phillips-Hill’s reaction to the governor’s budget address here.