Republicans claim agreement reached on structural deficit; administration says conversations are ongoing

Republicans claim agreement reached on structural deficit; administration says conversations are ongoing

Republicans in the legislature are claiming a major breakthrough in the steps toward a budget agreement: agreement between them and the Wolf administration on a deficit number.

According to House Appropriations Committee Chairman Bill Adolph (R-Delaware), the agreement reached with the governor late last week puts the current structural deficit at $1.2 billion.

“The meeting took place maybe last Tuesday or Wednesday and the meeting was with the four chairmen of the Appropriations Committee and the four executive directors as well as the Budget Secretary as well as the governor himself,” Rep. Adolph told The PLS Reporter.

“After about an hour and a half discussion, there has been agreement that the starting point for this year is somewhere around $300 million and the structural deficit that we are working with is somewhere at $1.2 billion.”

Monday, June 15, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views

Gov. Wolf waives background check fees for volunteers

As the House continues to advance legislation that would significantly alter the background check provisions of a 2014 child protection law, Gov. Tom Wolf took care of one of the issues some took with the legislation and waived background check and child abuse clearance fees for volunteers working with children.

The $10 fee for those employed to work with children has been reduced to $8 under the governor’s order.

The changes will become effective July 25, 2015.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views

Court orders Arneson reinstated as Open Records office head

The much anticipated and long-awaited Commonwealth Court decision in Arneson v. Wolf was issued Wednesday morning with the court ordering by a four to three decision that Erik Arneson be reinstated as the Executive Director of the Office of Open Records and be compensated for back pay.

In so ordering, the court further held that Gov. Tom Wolf exceeded executive authority in firing Arneson, who was appointed by Gov. Tom Corbett just days before his term expired.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Municipal pension reform bill Floor vote will likely be held off

Municipal pension reform bill Floor vote will likely be held off

While House Bill 316—a bill to substantially reform Pennsylvania’s more than 1,400 municipal pension plans—was moved out of the House State Government Committee Tuesday morning, its consideration on the House Floor will likely be held off until state public pension reform legislation is dealt with by the legislature.

House Bill 316 would require all municipalities to move newly-hired police and firefighters into a cash balance pension system.

“There are no immediate plans [to run the bill] at this particular moment,” said Steve Miskin spokesperson for the House Speaker and Majority Leader. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Turzai on budget talks: “There’s a wide gulf on many issues”

Turzai on budget talks: “There’s a wide gulf on many issues”

Following Tuesday morning’s meeting between legislative Republican leadership and Gov. Tom Wolf, House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) told The PLS Reporter “there’s a wide gulf on many issues.”

“We’re continuing to meet, there’s a lot of issues to cover, a lot of work to do,” he said exiting the meeting.

Also leaving the meeting was House Majority Leader Dave Reed (R-Indiana) who struck just a slightly more optimistic tone about resolving outstanding issues including pension reform and liquor privatization.

However, he said one sticking point continues to be the exact amount of the deficit that needs to be tackled in the FY 2015-2016 budget, until that can be determined, Rep. Reed said those issues will have to wait.

“We need to figure out what is a structural deficit [and] that folks are actually agreeing on what the numbers are,” he said. “There still is a significant difference between the House and the Senate, where the IFO and where the Budget Secretary is on what an actual budget deficit is.” 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
RSS
First111112113114115116117118119120Last