Senator Vincent Hughes

HARRISBURG – May 29, 2020 — Democratic Appropriations Chairman Vincent Hughes (D-Philadelphia/Montgomery) issued the following statement after the Pennsylvania Senate passed bills for an unprecedented $25.8 billion interim budget and allocated $2.6 billion in federal CARES Act recovery funds Thursday:

“The budget we passed today reflects the reality of Pennsylvania’s economic situation in the wake of the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. Funding education and providing much needed stability for our critical programs and services was our top priority. We were able to get that done with this temporary budget, which will allow us to get a clearer picture of the economic forecast before addressing the remainder of the fiscal year.

I am hopeful that the federal government will see the needs of its states and provide additional aid to help ensure we have a recovery that puts the people first, providing additional aid to the people and small businesses hit hardest by the pandemic. More can be done and our goal going forward should be to get resources to our families and communities. 

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, my colleagues and I were fighting to raise the minimum wage, to help increase worker protections, create affordable housing solutions, expand health care access, bring fair funding to our education system and many other progressive policy initiatives. We will continue to fight on these issues because the pandemic has exposed the fact that we need to adopt a budget that addresses the issues that matter most to the people of Pennsylvania, whether or not we are dealing with a crisis.”