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#PABudget2018: Governor proposes increased education investment

 Governor Tom Wolf gave his fourth budget address Tuesday, Feb. 6, before the PA General Assembly and called on legislators to work together to increase PA's investment in education and programs that ensure that Pennsylvanians have "21st Century skills."His 2018-18 budget would invest an additional $225 million in education and make significant investments in workforce development.

Governor Wolf’s 2018-19 budget proposal for education includes:
• $100 million increase in Basic Education;
• $40 million increase in Pre-K Counts and Head Start;
• $20 million increase for Special Education;
• $15 million increase for the State System of Higher Education; and
• $10 million for Career and Technical Education

AFTPA President Ted Kirsch released a statement about the governor's budget address.

“Since his campaign, Governor Wolf has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to education by the priorities reflected in his budget proposals. His fourth budget is no different. Governor Wolf recognizes that Pennsylvania’s future depends on having an educated populace and a well-prepared workforce. His budget reflects this core belief that education is the key to making Pennsylvania a productive, worker-friendly and business-friendly state.

“Governor Wolf’s 2018-19 budget continues to invest in programs to make our students successful and our communities healthy and vibrant. With $225 million in new investment in K-12 education, special education, early childhood programs and science, technology, engineering, math and computer science education programs, Governor Wolf continues to rewrite Pennsylvania’s education narrative and give hope to students across the state.

“His commitment to workers – from raising the state’s minimum wage to $12 an hour, and ultimately to $15 an hour, to his investment in career and technology education – will give Pennsylvania the edge it needs in a competitive economic environment.

“Governor Wolf’s budget recognizes the need to generate new revenues to support investments in education, programs and the workforce through a fair severance tax on natural gas drilling. Every state with significant natural gas deposits already levies such taxes. A majority of Pennsylvanians support a Marcellus Shale extraction tax, which would be paid largely by out-of-state consumers.

“We urge the House and the Senate to work with the governor in the spirit of bipartisanship to invest in education and to pass a severance tax quickly so that organizations that depend on state funding can continue to serve the commonwealth’s residents.”

You can read the text of Governor Wolf's budget address here.

Click here to view the 2018-19 Executive Budget Summary online.

Click here to read the House Democratic Appropriations Committee Budget Briefing.

Click here to view the budget PowerPoint.

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