HARRISBURG – State Rep. Clint Owlett (R-Tioga/Bradford/Potter), who serves as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, issued the following statement regarding the governor’s $36 billion state budget plan that includes over a half billion dollars to cover his overspending in the current year’s budget:
“The proposal outlined by the governor today carries a high price tag – one that would hurt Pennsylvania families and rural communities, as well as eliminate any chance we have of boosting our economy and enhancing job opportunities.
“I am particularly offended by the governor’s continued failure to manage state spending. With a great deal of hard work and effort, we enacted a budget last year that the governor agreed to and signed into law. Yet this year’s budget proposal asks for more than $587.7 million to cover overspending by Wolf and his administration. He has provided no explanation for why this overspending has occurred, despite being required to do so under a state law enacted last year.
“Further budgetary gimmicks that have pushed a portion of this year’s expenses onto next year’s budget increase the level of overspending to nearly $1 billion. This is simply unacceptable. The governor is ignoring the law and the will of the General Assembly when he and his appointees disregard the budget we passed and spend whatever they want. The budget is not a suggestion. It is the law.
“This budget proposal is simply more of the same from this governor. More spending. More taxes. More debt. And more cuts to initiatives important to our state’s agriculture industry. This is especially disappointing from a governor who has claimed to be pro-agriculture…and one who has increased funding for his own office.
“I simply cannot support the governor’s policies, as they would do nothing to help our state and would instead saddle our children with unacceptable levels of debt. This is not a pro-business budget, a pro-employer budget, a pro-family budget or a pro-taxpayer budget. It is a pro-spending, pro-taxing, pro-borrowing and pro-big government budget that has no place in our Commonwealth.
“I am honored to again serve as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, which is charged with reviewing the governor’s budget proposal in depth. As always, I will do all I can to ensure the voice of rural Pennsylvania is well-represented at the negotiation table.”
Owlett noted House budget hearings will begin Tuesday, Feb. 18. For a full schedule, as well as details about the budget proposal, visit pahousegop.com
Representative Clint Owlett
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Tricia Lehman