HARRISBURG – After hearing Gov. Tom Wolf on Tuesday propose what would be a historic increase in state spending for the 2022-23 fiscal year, state Rep. Mike Armanini (R-Clearfield/Elk) offered the following statement in reaction to the entire budget address:
“My initial reaction to what I heard was labeling it a lot of fluff. The governor spent a great deal of time taking credit for things in which he played an extremely minor role. For example, the revenue surplus Pennsylvania enjoys exists thanks to consumer spending of stimulus money and state House Republican-led ‘victories’ that prevented the governor’s yearly campaign to raise taxes or enact new ones from becoming law. What he failed to mention was his selective and inconsistent closing of businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic and his veto of election reform that would have, among other things, instituted voter ID, something of which the majority of Pennsylvanians approve.
“His desire to increase budget spending by more than $6 billion - a 16.6% hike - for the 2022-23 fiscal year is way out of line. The governor continues to ask for more money for education while sitting for more than a year on a significant amount of federal dollars left over from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). We really need to see how this additional funding request would be spent, and I’m sure the upcoming House Appropriations Committee budget hearings will expose that. So many people want more education spending, but it is fiscally irresponsible to ‘throw money’ at a system without effectively measuring and analyzing what we are getting in return.
“The governor seems quite focused on his legacy. If his ‘spend it all now’ budget philosophy ever became law, Pennsylvania’s next governor would be left in the perilous position of having to severely cut programs and services and/or raise taxes. That can’t happen, and I promise to work with my colleagues to do all we can to prevent it from becoming a reality.”
Representative Michael Armanini
75th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Scott Little