Philadelphia, PA – February 9, 2022 − Senator Sharif Street (D- Philadelphia) released the following statement in response to Governor Tom Wolf’s proposed 2022-2023 budget:
“The Governor’s budget proposal highlights the many opportunities we have in Pennsylvania to better equip our schools, workers, and the most vulnerable with resources they need to thrive. Governor Wolf’s proposed budget includes historic funding for education, including a $1.55B increase in basic education, $200M for special education, over $70M for early childhood education programs, and more than $180M for higher education programs to freeze tuition, support scholarships, and make college more affordable. In addition to the much-needed investments in education, I was happy to see the Governor’s commitment to raising our state’s minimum wage and supporting mental health, substance use disorder, and veterans’ services throughout the commonwealth.
The budget proposal also calls for $35M to help with community-led gun violence prevention efforts. While this is a good start in addressing the daily cycle of gun violence our communities face, we need to more aggressively and consistently fund Programs that positively affect violence and promote community safety in the immediate and over time. This includes but isn’t limited to: community violence prevention groups that are first responders to conflict and critical at deescalating violence, survivor support and trauma informed care, youth sports and police athletic leagues, and job ready and same day pay work programs.
These are solutions I’ll continue to strongly advocate for because I know our communities need help- I wore an orange tie in honor of victims and survivors of gun violence. I’ll continue to call for$1B in funding over a period of 3 years, an annual allocation of $330M over that time with $100M directed to Philadelphia and $220M across the commonwealth.
Overall, the Governor’s budget is a step in the right direction for Pennsylvania. I support his vision and look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to pass a budget that represents our number one priority- the needs of the people of Pennsylvania.