Dunbar Declares 2018-19 State Budget Major Victory for PA Taxpayers
HARRISBURG – The final 2018-19 state budget that the Legislature advanced to the governor’s desk this week is a direct reflection of the nation’s dramatically improving economy and nearly four years of House Republicans maintaining fiscal restraint on state spending—all without raising taxes on hard-working Pennsylvanians, confirmed Rep. George Dunbar (R-Westmoreland), who serves as the vice chairman of both the House Appropriations and Finance committees.

“Virtually any way you crunch the numbers, this year’s $32.7 billion budget, which contains a modest 1.7 percent spending increase over last year’s budget, is a major victory for Pennsylvania taxpayers,” said Dunbar. “Not only do we have another budget where total spending is below the rate of inflation and TABOR, due to tremendous fiscal restraint during the last several years, the previous $2 billion deficit has been erased, we finally have a surplus, and we will also be restoring revenue to the state’s depleted Rainy Day Fund for the first time since 2006.”

Watch Rep. Dunbar’s additional budget comments by clicking here.

The Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR) is a metric to help control and bring government spending in line with inflation and population growth. It is calculated by adding the inflation rate and Pennsylvania’s population growth rate, which was 0.14 percent over the past year.

Projections show the 2017-18 fiscal year ending with a surplus of about $20 million. While once again rejecting Gov. Tom Wolf’s massive tax increase proposals, the 2018-19 state budget includes no new revenue, meaning no new taxes and no new fees for state taxpayers.

The budget’s historic $12.3 billion pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade education funding package includes a $100 million increase for the main regular education subsidy to the state’s 500 public school systems, to $6.1 billion. It also contains $30 million in increased funding for vocational education programs to $92 million; $20 million more for pre-K programs to $192.3 million; and an additional $15 million for special education costs to $1.13 billion.

Additionally, a new $60 million block grant program will allow schools across the Commonwealth to have equal and flexible access for funding school safety initiatives. This funding will be made available for such priorities as school resource officers, metal detectors, school safety assessments and preplanning, and other facility upgrades to ensure a safe learning environment.

“Breaking from the status quo of excessive spending and bigger government, once again, I was pleased to stand up for Pennsylvania taxpayers by crafting, negotiating and voting for a fiscally responsible budget plan containing historic investments for our schools, public safety and human services programs solidly based on available revenues,” concluded Dunbar.

Representative George Dunbar
56th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Ty McCauslin
RepDunbar.com / Facebook.com/RepDunbar

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