Subscribe to E-news. July 2, 2015

Governor Wolf’s Veto Protects Independence of Pennsylvanians

With control of the Senate and the House, Republicans swiftly ensnared Pennsylvania in a last-minute budget trap. The Republican budget trap left no time for negotiation or compromise with the Governor or Democrats. Public discussion on the specifics of this $30 billion dollar budget, which affects us all, was extremely limited.

Senator Haywood Floor Remarks on Minimum Wage
Senator Haywood Floor Remarks on Minimum Wage

Governor Wolf freed the commonwealth from this trap by vetoing the last-minute Republican budget. Our state needs a balanced budget that allows Pennsylvanians to be independent. The Republican budget denies Pennsylvanians of their independence by failing to raise the minimum wage, failing to reduce property taxes for the elderly and failing to properly fund our schools.

On the current minimum wage of $7.25 an hour, a Pennsylvanian who works 40 hours a week still lives close to the poverty line, making less than $15,000 a year. Most individuals who rely on public assistance and food banks come from working families, according to the University of California, Berkeley and Feeding America. Governor Wolf’s budget raises the minimum wage, ensuring all working people have the opportunity to be self-sufficient. The Republican budget denies independence to low-wage workers by failing to raise the wage.

Residents across the commonwealth agree that property taxes in many neighborhoods have become unaffordable for the elderly. By lowering property taxes, the Governor will increase financial independence and stability by making homeownership more affordable and allowing more elderly Pennsylvanians to live independently in their own homes. The Republican budget denies independence to these homeowners by failing to reduce property taxes.

Governor Wolf's Veto Protects Independence of Pennsylvanians

Senator Art Haywood describes the key differences between the Republican budget and the Governor's plan, which protects the independence of Pennsylvanians by raising the wage, reducing property taxes and funding public schools.




By restoring funding to public education, the Governor allows all children in Pennsylvania to have the opportunity to grow up and lead independent, productive lives. Because we have the worst record for funding poor schools in our entire country, many Pennsylvania children currently go to understaffed schools with few resources. By properly funding these schools, we can increase the chances that these children avoid dropping out, receive their diplomas, and become fully-employed, independent adults contributing to our commonwealth. The Republican budget denies our most vulnerable children their independence by failing to adequately fund their schools.

Specifically, the GOP budget does little to restore higher education cuts, and represents a $778,410 cut to Montgomery County Community College, a $144,518 cut to Abington School District, a $205,017 cut to Cheltenham Township School District, a $27,562 cut to Springfield Township School District and a $122,898,407 cut to Philadelphia School District as compared to Governor Wolf’s budget. The Republican budget is a failure to our children.

Don’t fall for the trap. Stand with our Governor as he works to protect the independence of Pennsylvanians and support our shared destiny.

Summer Interns Off to a Strong Start

I am glad to have the creativity and energy of fifteen summer interns contributing to efforts in my district and Harrisburg offices. These talented high school and college students bring a diverse combination of skills and experience to my offices. Here are the perspectives of some of my office’s interns as they start the summer:

Summer InternsAmanda, incoming Freshman at Temple University - Harrisburg office: “I find the whole government process interesting, and wanted to learn more about how the legislative process works and see if this would be a potential area I would be interested in working in. I’ve had a blast so far and can’t wait to see what I am able to do and accomplish this summer!”

Anmol, incoming Freshman at University of Pittsburgh – Harrisburg office: “As an intern fresh out of high school, this experience has taught me a lot. I have learned about the concerns of constituents, and how they voice their opinions. On top of that, I have learned the way legislation works, and how bills and resolutions are drafted. Being here has helped me shape my own ideas and concerns, as well as helping me create a stronger career path."

Daja, incoming Junior at Philadelphia High School - District Office: “I applied for this internship because I love giving back to my community and I am interested in learning about Pennsylvania’s legislative process. Currently, I am working on a research project that involves finding out how state laws can reduce barriers to employment for the physically disabled.”

Jack, incoming Sophomore at Temple University - District Office: “From this experience I hope to gain more knowledge about the conditions in the community dealing with education, wages, sustainability, and related areas and the satisfaction of knowing I have contributed something good to them. Currently I am working on finding the most effective state policies across the nation that provide comprehensive services to people with mental disabilities.”

Reverend Senator Clementa PinckneyRemembering Reverend Senator Clementa Pinckney

Just two weeks ago, our nation lost nine lives in the brutal Charleston shooting at Mother Emanuel AME. Rev. Clementa Pinckney, a faithful public servant and spiritual leader in the South Carolina Senate, was among those killed in Charleston. On behalf of the Pennsylvania Senate, I delivered a condolence resolution to Senator Pinckney’s family in Charleston last week. Let us continue to remember the life of Senator Pinckney and the eight others lost as we work towards healing from this tragedy and take steps to prevent further gun violence in our communities.

Dare to care,

Art Haywood
State Senator
4th District

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