The Pennsylvania budget is set to be completed towards the end of this week. On Monday, June 24, the House voted HB 790, the state general fund budget bill, out of the House Appropriations Committee. The House will take a final floor vote on HB 790 today and it will then go over to the Senate. The Senate is expected to take a final vote on HB 790 on Thursday, June 26.
After the House voted the general fund budget bill out of committee yesterday, the House released the 2019–20 General Fund Budget House Appropriations Analysis, the 2019–20 Budget General Fund Appropriations Spreadsheets, and the General Fund Financial Statement.
Yesterday, the Senate voted HB 33, the Health and Human Service Code bill, out of the Senate Health and Human Service Committee on a party line vote. HB 33 eliminated the general assistance fund for the disabled, and the bill should have a final vote on Wednesday. SB 695 is another Health and Human Service Code bill, which is on Second Consideration in the House.
The other code bills should be finalized sometime this week, but as of late yesterday, the Fiscal Code bill still had numerous issues that need to be resolved. All four caucuses and the Governor’s office continue to work on the Fiscal Code. Contact RCPA Director of Government Affairs Jack Phillips with any questions.
Terry Madonna interviewed Richard Edley on June 1, 2017, for the political/public policy TV program Pennsylvania Newsmakers. Edley discussed several topics with Mr. Madonna, including the state budget/funding for health and human services, the increasing opioid crisis, and unification of state agencies. Video streaming of the entire program is available here (Richard Edley’s segment begins at 13:00). @terrymadonna
Yesterday, the General Assembly passed and the governor signed the remaining bills to enact the current fiscal year’s spending plan of $31.5 billion. To pay for the general appropriations bill, the Legislature adopted several tax increases and some new revenue streams. The cigarette tax was increased another $1/pack while e-cigarettes, roll-your-own cigarettes, and smokeless tobacco have now been added as taxable items.
Additionally, lottery winnings will now be assessed a PIT and a sales tax will be imposed on digital downloading of books, music, satellite radio, and streaming audio/video. The tax on table games was also increased by 2%, but will sunset in five years. Revenue streams for the fiscal year are also dependent upon several non-recurring sources; i.e., a number of transfers contained in the fiscal code such as transfers from:
Please contact Jack Phillips with any questions.
Early yesterday evening, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives approved the changes made in the Senate by a 144-54 vote and sent SB 1073, the general appropriations (GA) bill, to the governor. The approved GA bill increases spending by $1.5 billion, or an increase of 5%. Even though the General assembly sent the GA bill to the Governor, the House and Senate still must come up with the revenues necessary to pay for the appropriations as set forth in the bill.
Yesterday, the General Assembly passed budget bills to restore aid to the various programs that were vetoed by the governor back in December. The new budget bills authorize important funding for education, agriculture, and rural hospitals.