In early July, Governor Wolf announced the General Appropriations bill passed by the House and Senate would become law. The budget is a significant step forward for Pennsylvania schools and provides critical funding to fight the opioid crisis.
“This budget makes historic investments in education that will bring us closer to restoring the cuts of the past and invests vital money to fight the opioid crisis that has struck Pennsylvania,” said Governor Tom Wolf.
The governor has made investment in our schools and our children his top priority. The budget will help ensure student success, and improve access to a high-quality education — regardless of a child’s zip code.
“As has been said by Republicans and Democrats alike, this is a budget Pennsylvania can be proud of, and it puts us back on a path to fiscal responsibility and a sustainable future,” said Wolf.
The budget also provides critical services for seniors and the most vulnerable—many of whom rely on these programs as a last resort. Finally, it looks out for the bottom line—only increasing spending where absolutely necessary.
Highlights of the 2016-17 budget include:
Investment in Education
- This budget provides an additional $200 million for basic education, as well as a $30 million increase for early childhood education, preserving the number of slots for proven early childhood education programs like Pre-K Counts and Head Start.
- Funding for special education will increase by $20 million, and the budget provides a more than $10 million increase for early intervention, and a nearly $40 million increase for higher education.
- The new fair funding formula will be used to distribute the additional education funding. The governor signed the formula into law in June. Previously, Pennsylvania was one of only three states without such a formula, creating massive inequities among school districts and hitting the most vulnerable students the hardest.
- In his first two years the governor has secured historic increases in education including: $415 million in basic education; $60 million for early childhood education; $50 million in special education; $10.4 million for early intervention; $81.4 million for state-owned and state-related universities and $16.4 for community colleges.
For more details visit: http://www.revenue.pa.gov/GeneralTaxInformation/News%20and%20Statistics/Documents/Tax%20Update/taxupdate_185.pdf