Rep. Marci Mustello (R-Butler) issued the following statement in response to the House approving a state budget for Fiscal Year 2021-22 that supports core government services:
“One of the most important tasks performed by the General Assembly each year is the adoption of the state budget. Since taking office in 2015, Gov. Tom Wolf has proposed increasing taxes with each of his budget proposals, including a proposed $7 billion Personal Income Tax Increase this year. House Republicans are committed to fiscal restraint and opposing any new taxes or fees. The 2021-22 budget includes no new taxes and no new fees.
“Butler County is blessed to have outstanding school districts and community colleges. In order to keep them running at peak efficiency and to give students the best education possible, we must do our best to fully fund schools. The budget for PreK-12 education would be $13.55 billion, which is a record high. Early childhood education funding, which includes Pre-K and Head Start, would receive an additional $30 million, while special education funding would get a $50 million increase. Additionally, $350 million in federal relief funding would be dedicated to address learning loss, summer enrichment and after school programs.
“It is very important to me to note that the spending plan allocates $44 million of federal relief funds for career and technical schools to ensure students can learn the skills needed for the jobs available today.
“The COVID-19 pandemic proved to be devastating for many families and businesses and put a strain on state-provided services, so it is important that we ensure reserve funding is available for emergency situations. The budget will deposit more than $2.52 billion into the Rainy Day Fund, growing it to a historic $2.76 billion.
“As a member of the House Agriculture Committee and a local member of the Butler County Farm Bureau, I was pleased to see that the budget supports agriculture by maintaining funding for key operational and research needs, in addition to increasing the State Food Purchase Program with an additional $3 million.
“Finally, the budget includes money to take care of individuals with intellectual disabilities, allocates $30 million for violence intervention and prevention and funds an additional $282 million in federal relief funds to help nursing homes, assisted living and personal care homes with costs related to personal protective equipment (PPE), staff testing and other pandemic related costs.”
For more information on the 2021-22 state budget, go to http://www.pahousegop.com/2122PAbudget
Representative Marci Mustello
11th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Rick Leiner
717.260.6437 (office), 717.497.8478 (cell)