After all of this pain, we deserve a budget that was worth the wait!

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After all of this pain, we deserve a budget that was worth the wait!

The calendar year is coming to an end, and we thought at this point we’d be talking to you about priorities for 2016, discussing what the next fiscal year’s budget should contain, and asking for you to make a year end contribution.

We did make a lot of progress in 2015!  You can read here about all the work we did together, and we ask you to make your contribution now, before the calendar year is over, so we can continue advocating for resources, support and policies that strengthen education for our children.

In January, we will be sending out an “issue survey” to ask you about what issues you are most interested in working on and what you think needs to happen.  It won’t take long and we need your input to help us select priorities for the coming year.

Meanwhile, here is the latest on the budget. Last week, before leaving Harrisburg to enjoy their holiday vacation, PA lawmakers abandoned the “framework budget” that had received strong bipartisan support in the Senate and was poised for a final vote in the House. Instead of continuing to work toward a true compromise budget, House leadership refused to allow members to take a final vote on the “framework budget” and instead sent lawmakers home for the holidays.

The Senate promptly passed a budget (HB 1460) that had already been passed in House (it closely resembles the budget Governor Wolf vetoed back in June). They sent it to Governor Wolf and left Harrisburg for vacation.

HB 1460 provides less than a 2% increase in Basic Education Funding to schools–and overall about $200 million LESS in state funding to pre-K-12 classrooms than the “framework budget.”  Click HERE to see the difference in school funding levels between the two proposed budgets.

If HB 1460 becomes law, school districts throughout the Commonwealth will be forced to once again slash programs and services from schools and reduce the quality of education our children receive. HB 1460 provides inadequate funding to schools and this is simply unacceptable.  

We  thank all of the lawmakers who supported the “framework budget” in the three procedural votes in the House and in the vote in the Senate. We most strongly urge leadership in the House to call lawmakers back to Harrisburg to allow House members to vote one final time to pass the compromise “framework budget” so that this painful budget impasse can finally end. Pennsylvanians deserve a budget that was worth the wait.

This year’s budget impasse has demonstrated the need for strong, sustained statewide advocacy for fair and adequate funding for public schools in Pennsylvania.

Would you make a donation to Education Voters of PA to help us reach more communities, train more citizen leaders, keep the heat on more policymakers and by doing so…help us make sure that all of our children will get the education they deserve?

Thank you for your support of public education.

Sincerely,

Susan Gobreski, Executive Director, Education Voters of PA