Wednesday, August 19, 2015


House and Senate Republicans put an offer on the table at Wednesday's state budget negotiating session to increase funding for schools in exchange for pension reform proposal that looks something like the one the Legislature passed and Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed.

Now they are awaiting a response from Gov. Tom Wolf and Democratic legislative leaders.

The offer included increasing spending on basic education, which is the bread and butter of state funding for school districts, by $400 million, which is what Wolf requested in his budget proposal. In exchange, they are asking the governor to go along with a modified pension reform plan that includes a defined contribution plan for future employees.

"We're not looking for a counter" offer," Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman, R-Centre County said following the brief session. "He can accept it and we can move forward with the rest of the budget. If he doesn't accept it, ... then we're back to Square One."

House Majority Leader Dave Reed, R-Indiana, indicated that if the governor rejects this offer, the Legislature's focus will move toward a budget veto override or stopgap budget.

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