Budgets often lead to some of the most contentious battles within government, and the approval for the Pennsylvania’s $29.1 billion budget is shaping up to follow suit.
The budget was approved by lawmakers on Monday night, hours before the end of Pennsylvania’s fiscal year, but Governor Tom Corbett refused to sign the budget sent to him.
He said he would withhold his signature until the General Assembly made a decision regarding pension cuts, adding that the budget “does not address all the difficult choices that still need to be made.”
We talked with WESA’s state capitol reporter Mary Wilson about the budget and the governor’s concerns. She said that his pension overhaul plan has already been referred to a committee where it is likely to die.
“Suspense is the only thing he’s building here, because there’s no chance that any of his own initiatives could get through, unless something really drastic happens,” Wilson said.
While there is a chance that Corbett might veto the budget, she believes that it is highly unlikely.
“That whole no new tax thing… that was a calculation made with the governor in mind, and it made writing a budget a lot more difficult to not include any new tax revenue. If the governor vetoes the budget, and doesn’t look like he has a way forward on passing a pension proposal, which is the case now, I don’t see how that's a win for him, just a few months before his fall reelection.