Harrisburg – March 3, 2015 – Sen. Jim Brewster (D-Allegheny/Westmoreland) said that Gov. Tom Wolf’s budget that is focused on tax relief, education funding and job creation would help rebuild the middle class and address key issues that have plagued Pennsylvania.

Wolf called for a General Fund spending plan that totals $29.8 billion which is a modest 2.7 percent increase from last year’s budget. Wolf inherited a $2.3 billion structural deficit, cash flow shortages, credit rating declines and a daunting job creation deficit from Gov. Tom Corbett.

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The plan calls for $3.8 billion in property tax relief, $1 billion more for education, $1.675 billion in job creation plus restoration of social safety net funding cut by former Gov. Tom Corbett. In the speech, the governor referenced Brewster’s liquor modernization proposal. He calls for revenues generated from the plan to address pension funding liabilities.

Brewster issued the following statement with his initial reaction to the budget plan immediately after the governor made his 2015-16 budget speech to a joint session of the General Assembly:

“The governor’s budget plan addresses issues that have burdened middle-class families for years. Providing property tax relief, new school funding and focusing on job creation is a welcome departure from the incrementally bad budgets Pennsylvania citizens experienced in recent years under Governor Corbett.

“Governor Wolf has many challenges to confront and his bold budget provides policy options for lawmakers to consider. Substantial property tax relief – an average of $1,000 per home — driven back to homeowners, plus the new $1 billion for schools are key elements of this proposal. Closing business tax loopholes to ratchet-down the Corporate Net Income Tax will help the economy and provide certainty.”

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