Pa. House passes GOP budget bill — despite united opposition from Dems

     Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Dave Reed calls the GOP budget proposal a plan that will 'get government back to its core functions.' (AP file photo)

    Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Dave Reed calls the GOP budget proposal a plan that will 'get government back to its core functions.' (AP file photo)

    Pennsylvania’s House has passed a Republican budget proposal that includes no new taxes and makes deep, across-the-board cuts to Gov. Tom Wolf’s spending plan.

    The bill, introduced this week, has been fast-tracked despite nearly unanimous Democratic opposition.

    It passed quickly on party lines, with just four Republicans breaking ranks to dissent.

    House Majority Leader Dave Reed said it’s a plan that will “get government back to its core functions.”

    “From pension and debt obligations to our correctional spending to entitlement programs — this budget seeks to being those costs back in line with reality,” said Reed, R-Indiana, addressing the House.

    Meanwhile House Appropriations Committee Minority Chair Joe Markosek and other Democrats condemn the sharp reductions in Human Services spending.

    “This Republican budget bill cuts into the bone that many of us agree is already bare,” he said.

    “The economy is growing,” said Markosek, D-Allegheny. “More people are working. And yet we move on Pennsylvania taxpayers like they’re the ones who have done something wrong.”

    The County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania has also criticized the cuts, saying they’ll only increase local tax burdens.

    The measure now goes to the Senate, where it will likely hit some roadblocks.

    A Senate GOP spokeswoman has indicated there are some components the caucus intends to change.

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