Lawmakers Work Through Weekend To Make Budget Deadline - Gov. St - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather and Events

Lawmakers Work Through Weekend To Make Budget Deadline - Gov. Still Pushing Pension Reform

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Pennsylvania lawmakers have been in session all weekend, trying to resolve state budget issues before the June 30 deadline. Lawmakers are trying to finalize a more than 29 billion dollar  budget that doesn't hike taxes.   At last word the Senate Appropriations Committee amended and approved a 29.1 billion dollar spending plan along party lines. 

Senator Sean Wiley (D-Erie) says it falls short in a number of areas.  "First and foremost, we continue to neglect the critical area of education investment as we are still attempting to recover from the cuts we've experienced over the last three years," said Wiley.  He also said, "The GOP spending plan is balanced on projected revenues that are unlikely to materialize."

To date the legislature hasn't been able to agree on pension reforms, but Sunday night Governor Tom Corbett continued to press for that. "We are seeing higher pension costs killing our school districts all across Pennsylvania," said Corbett.  He went on to say, "Combined with the pensions of the state employees system it's a 3.3 billion dollar contribution that's unsustainable and I'm urging lawmakers to continue to work on pension reform."    Some senate democrats want PA to take out bonds to pay the pension system's $50 billion in debt.  Senator wiley's office said Sunday night that the only pension reform approved so far is for re-elected lawmakers.

The budget bill now goes to the full senate for consideration, lawmakers have until midnight Monday to pass a budget on time.

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