Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Budget talks

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Tuesday, September 1, 2015
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Budget talks will happen this week, but just in smaller, private meetings.

Gov. Tom Wolf and legislative leaders are planning to meet to discuss the state budget situation, just not in the “big table” groups seen during the last few weeks, and – this is equally as important to the governor – in private.

Not that the public was allowed into the other budget meetings, but the news media was alerted about the when and where of those past meetings.

Wolf spokesman Jeff Sheridan said the hope is the smaller, private meetings will offer advantages over the larger meetings: fewer people who, as Sheridan put it, aren’t clamoring to make their talking points to the media once the meeting ends. 

House Republicans confirmed the plans to have smaller meetings sometime this week, although none had been held as of noon on Monday. 

House GOP spokesman Steve Miskin said the meetings could produce results that have been elusive at the larger meetings. 

However, he qualified that appraisal, saying if the Wolf administration continues its political campaigning against those who don’t agree with the governor’s budget ideas, on which Miskin said there has been little effort by the Wolf administration to compromise, the size and transparency of the meetings aren’t likely to produce different results. 

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