While touring a cancer immunotherapy developer at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf insisted budget negotiations in Harrisburg are progressing well, even though House members came in on Saturday and then failed to strike a deal.
Wolf visited Adaptimmune, which received state money to build a new, LEED-certified medical manufacturing facility in the Navy Yard, two days after Republican House Speaker Mike Turzai called an emergency weekend session to hash out a way to fund the newly-approved state budget plan. Turzai has been pushing a budget revenue plan that would not raise taxes.
Wolf insisted budget talks are not at an impasse, but merely “took a detour” — a stumble in an otherwise positive budget negotiation.
“I’m not sure where we’ll end up, but I think there are enough people in Harrisburg who want to get us to a good place, where we avoid a credit downgrade, where we actually pay for things we overwhelmingly agreed we want to spend money on — like education, jobs, the opioid crisis, and seniors – and bring us across the finish line,” he said.
The clock is ticking. If a way to pay for the new budget plan isn’t hammered out in a month or so, the state could face a credit downgrade. The state treasurer also says by the end of August, cash-flow problems could force officials to choose which departments and vendors to pay and which to delay.