- Rep. Mike Cabell (R-Luzerne) issued the following statement regarding the latest state budget developments. Gov. Josh Shapiro signed the 2023-24 General Appropriations bill into law on Thursday after it was signed in the Senate. The governor also eliminated $100 million that would have funded the Pennsylvania Award for Student Success (PASS) scholarship program.
“Getting a main budget bill in place helps to get money to those who need it most. Funding will now be released to nonprofits, schools and the county agencies that serve our most vulnerable residents. But I have to say, we missed an opportunity to help even more people, and that’s part of the reason I voted ‘no’ on the General Appropriations bill last month.
“I also want my constituents to know that Thursday’s action by the Senate and the governor does not end our fight for the PASS program, which will give hope to students trapped in Pennsylvania’s poorest-performing schools. I visited a private school just this week that has had success turning around the lives of struggling public school students. We need to put funding in place to do more of that.
“In addition, there are proposals being considered now that would help reduce the harmful impacts of these budget stalemates in future years. I support Sen. Lisa Baker’s efforts to advocate for budget timelines. She also has brought up the idea of a constitutional amendment that would carry forward the prior year’s budget at an 80% funding rate if the annual budget deadline is not met. This would allow state government to keep services in place. I believe her proposal is something we must seriously consider as we navigate such partisan times.”
Cabell is a member of the House Appropriations Committee, which is tasked with developing the annual state budget.