Harrisburg – July 27, 2017 – Senator Haywood today released the below statement following the Pennsylvania State Senate vote on the Pennsylvania revenue package:

“I am happy that senate leaders were able to work together to reach an agreement on this revenue package. It is more than can be said of the House at this time.

It is difficult to reach compromise, the nature of which ensures no senator’s goals are met entirely. The omnibus school code addresses a $65 million fix for Philadelphia public schools, but I cannot support the layoff provisions it also contains.

We have been fighting for a tax on shale since prior to my election. This revenue package also includes a shale tax for the first time that will deliver approximately $100 million. Although it will produce much less revenue than desired, it is a start.

There is clearly still more work to be done, and difficult choices to be made.

I am not opposed to raising taxes when appropriate. At the same time, when we raise taxes on everyday people, we must consider the impact on their wallets. There are more than one million Pennsylvanians in low-wage and poverty pay jobs. We can lift them and our communities up by raising the minimum wage this year. We can put hard-working families on a multi-year path toward $15 an hour. Without raising the minimum wage, we continue to make it difficult for so many moms and dads to make ends meet for their children.

We have taken measures to ease the impact on businesses. We should do the same for these hard-working Pennsylvanians. As such, I urge the legislature to reconsider raising the wage before the end of this year for the good of the commonwealth. In addition to helping our citizens, doing so would add at least $40 million in recurring revenue – a critical aspect given Pennsylvania’s ongoing financial struggles.”