HARRISBURG – Rep. Torren Ecker (R-Adam/Cumberland) joined his House colleagues to approve the 2019-20 state budget that protects taxpayers from tax increases and spends less than what Gov. Tom Wolf sought to spend.
“This budget covers numerous areas the people of the 193rd District find important,” Ecker said. “It provides increases in education funding, assists our vital agriculture industry, adds funding to the Rainy Day Fund and does not increase taxes.”
The budget provides a $432 million increase in pre-kindergarten through grade 12 education. As part of House Republican efforts to assist people with finding family-sustaining jobs, the budget includes a $10 million investment in career and technical education (CTE) – $7 million to the CTE line item and $3 million for equipment grants. Additionally, $4 million in increases have been allocated for Thaddeus Stevens and Penn College of Technology.
“The funding increases for our students are not only an increased commitment to them, but also to our future,” Ecker said. “As a supporter of CTE, I believe this is money well spent and will help improve our economy and society.”
House Republicans staved off all of the governor’s proposed cuts to agriculture. Rather than cut, two new line items were added to support the state’s top industry. The Livestock and Consumer Protection line item is earmarked for $1 million and the Animal Health and Diagnostics Commission will receive $2 million.
“This investment in agriculture couples nicely with a legislative package of bills to aid the farming industry, which is a key component in the district,” Ecker said. “The state’s agriculture industry touches all aspects of life in the Commonwealth, and beyond. This budgetary initiative, as well as the bills, is a show of our support for the industry and the important role it plays in our food supply.”
For the first time in years, the General Assembly is able to make a large and meaningful contribution to its Rainy Day Fund to protect taxpayers from potential future tax increases. At least $250 million will be contributed to the fund. This will improve Pennsylvania’s credit rating, which will lower borrowing costs down the road. The contribution is thanks to a more than $800 million surplus, which is the result of years of standing against tax increase proposals. This allowed the economy, and, in turn, tax revenue, to grow naturally.”
To view Rep. Torren Ecker’s comments on the budget, click here
Representative Torren Ecker
193rd Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Greg Gross