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PA-BGT: Senate GOP Veto Override Fails

pa-state-capitol-b175d9a07740ecf3Still at square one.

All 19 Democrats in the PA Senate stood with Gov. Tom Wolf on Wednesday to defeat Senate Republicans’ push to override Wolf’s latest veto.

One month ago, Wolf rejected a GOP-backed short-term budget solution, calling it an “avoidance maneuver” that had the same problems as House Bill 1192, which Wolf vetoed on June 30 to kick off four months of fruitless negotiations.

Several school superintendents were in the Senate chambers on Wednesday to see the override measure fail, according to Marc Levy and Peter Jackson of the Associated Press, leaving many districts and social service providers on the financial brink.

“You think they care whether this is temporary money? It’s one-third? I don’t think they care,” Sen. Majority Leader Jake Corman said of the superintendents. “I think they care that their doors are going to stay open, that they can pay their employees, that parents in their districts won’t have to face the decision, ‘What am I going to do with my kids while I’m working a full day because their school is closed?’”

At a press conference after the vote, Wolf insisted on a comprehensive budget agreement, again warning of the state’s structural deficits, which have led to five credit downgrades in three years.

“If we don’t work now for a budget that works, we’re going to be in really bigger problems in a very short time,” Wolf said.

For Wolf to put his signature on a budget, GOP legislative leaders will have to find middle ground with the Governor on education funding, taxes, pension reform, liquor privatization and a natural gas severance tax.

Auditor General Eugene DePasquale reported that PA school districts have taken out $431 million in loans since the budget impasse began 121 days ago, while predicting total borrowing by schools in the state could break $1 billion by December.

6 Responses

  1. As a tax payer and a business owner getting ready to go into bankruptcy due to ignorance in grand standing. We do not need anymore tax’s to pay the 43% of personnel that are pay paid by tax payers. Teachers do not need anymore money. Let’s learn how to work with in our perceived budgets. Small business cannot effort the cost of insurance being supplied to these 43%. Unless you want to add us to the insurance policy. That’s a good idea since we are already paying for it.

  2. Republicans holding up a compromise on the budget are living in a fantasy world. They believe that they control the destiny of the state with their thin majorities. They only wish they had supermajorities, then they could ram through any legislation they wished! Sadly for them, this is not the case.

    I live in Erie and the school district is being force to borrow million which involves loan origination fees and interest payments. If the budget crisis is not resolvee soon, the school district will be force to close the schools in the dead of winter. For a lot of poor children school is the only place they have to stay warm and have something to eat during the cold winter months and I do not exaggerate.
    Now if the republican leadership is unable to compromise, then I would call this a failure of leadership. They are more about playing games with peoples lives than adopting sober, measured acceptable budget measure that will address current and future fiscal issues and obligations the state is responsible for.

    Too bad the legislators pay is not tied to having a budget in place. You can bet your butt that,if, there was no pay for the legislators until a budget was cobbled out, approve and passed and signed by the governor,that, they would not let it drag on for months and months like they have.

    The problem all boils down to the republican leadership or the lack of leadership. Having a vote in the GOP senate to override is like the idiot republican in congress having over 143 votes to repeal obamacare. What’s the point?

  3. Maybe we set set Cannabis apart from the state stores so that the sales and tax revenues can be managed and enforced properly while the alcohol system moves to the private sector where it belongs.

  4. I agree. The most important thing is to use the state stores so that we can appease our union overlords and keep lazy union slugs in their jobs. Add marijuana and that’s icing on the cake.

  5. Solution for everything: Legalize marijuana, tax it, and sell it through State Stores. You get 2 revenue streams (sales and taxes), plus you save on prison budgets and lighten the court load of nuisance pot cases. Never gonna happen, but what good idea does in PA?

    If the school administrators are so worried, why are they not leaning on the GOP to pass a natural gas severance tax to fund them?

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