Full State Budget Unlikely by Deadline
The June 30th budget deadline is getting closer, and the negotiations between the Governor, and state House and Senate leaders are still going on behind closed doors.
Governor Tom Wolf told reporters he is “pleased” with the progress that has been made so far.
“Things are really moving, but I think they’re moving in the right way, the way the democratic process is supposed to proceed,” Wolf said according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
All sides say they are close to a final spending number, but are further apart on how to fill the almost $3 billion deficit the state faces.
“We sent a lot of revenue proposals over to the Senate over the last couple months. Gaming with VGTs was one of them. Sent a lot of liquor proposals over to the Senate as well. We’re certainly not going to rubber-stamp a revenue package that isn’t at least respectful of the proposals we sent over,” House Majority Leader Dave Reed (R-Indiana) told reporters.
According to State House Sound Bites, the chances of a repeat of last year’s budget situation are increasing. Last year, the state House and Senate passed a spending plan by the June 30th deadline, but took until almost two weeks later to pass a revenue package. Wolf let both bills lapse into law without his signature. Wolf told reporters he is unsure what he would do if that same situation happened again this year.
Regardless of what the House and Senate pass or do not pass by the deadline, negotiations will take a break for the weekend. The Senate has already announced they will adjourn for the weekend and take up any unfinished business next week.