Rendell looks to pay bills for short-term

    By: Scott Gilbert

    With Pennsylvania’s new budget nearly four weeks late, Governor Rendell says he’s looking into various options that could allow the commonwealth to pay its bills on a short-term basis.

    By: Scott Gilbert

    With Pennsylvania’s new budget nearly four weeks late, Governor Rendell says he’s looking into various options that could allow the commonwealth to pay its bills on a short-term basis.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090727sgstalled.mp3]

    Expressing growing frustration over the stalled budget talks, Rendell says his staff is exploring ways that he could invoke a stop-gap spending plan, possibly as early as mid-week.

    Rendell: The employees would get paid, our vendors would get paid, we’d be able to keep open all of the facilities that are in danger of closing, and I think that it is time to do that.

    House Minority Leader Sam Smith says House Republicans could agree with such a temporary plan, provided it’s simply designed to keep the government going.

    Smith: But a stopgap could be characterized as just one-twelfth, you know, pro-rated per over the last year’s spending and we can’t agree to that kind of a stop-gap.

    Pressure is mounting from state workers, with the largest group of employees to date, some 33,000, facing a payless payday this Friday.

    Rendell says he agrees with Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi’s assessment that little progress is being made, but he faults Pileggi’s caucus, the Senate Republicans, for refusing to budge from their opposition to a tax increase.

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