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Thank you for taking the time to read my e-newsletter. These periodic updates allow me to keep constituents informed about state and local issues through email without burdening taxpayers with printing and mailing costs.
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Senator Rich Alloway
Wolf Veto Denies Billions in Funding for Schools, Service Providers
The budget debate in Harrisburg took yet another ugly turn last week with Governor Wolf’s veto of roughly $11 billion in emergency funds for schools and social services, including rape crisis centers, foster services, homeless shelters and food pantries. Governor Wolf’s refusal to fund these critical priorities is yet another sad chapter in his short tenure in office.
The emergency funding plan was the fourth effort by legislators to fund some of the core services of government, but Governor Wolf has blocked every good faith attempt in order to push his own agenda – hiking your taxes. The governor has every right to fight for more government spending and higher taxes, just as lawmakers have a right to advocate a more fiscally responsible approach to budgeting. However, basic human decency demands that we do not allow innocent victims to be harmed in the course of any political disagreement. It is sickening to me that school students and vulnerable citizens are being asked to suffer needlessly for the sake of Governor Wolf’s unwillingness to compromise.
In an effort to break the impasse, lawmakers in both chambers will vote on the governor’s proposed income tax hike this month. The vote is intended as a final referendum on Governor Wolf’s plan. If a majority of lawmakers vote to increase taxes, then we can shape a budget around those new revenues. But if lawmakers reject the governor’s approach, then we have no choice but to chart a different path forward that relies on long-term savings rather than tax increases.
Regardless of the outcome of this vote, it is imperative that we take prompt action to ensure our most vulnerable citizens are not faced with any interruption of services. It is inexcusable to risk seeing our schools closed and critical services for needy families interrupted for no other reason than Governor Wolf’s desire to score a meaningless political victory. Funding these essential government services will be my highest priority in the weeks to come.
Planting Events to Add Up To 1,200 Trees in Local Communities
Beginning on October 10, a series of tree-planting events throughout the region will help add up to 1,200 trees in local communities in Adams, Cumberland, Franklin and York counties. The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay’s “Trees for Tomorrow” program presents a unique opportunity for local residents to make a lasting and meaningful impact on our environment.
Although other recent planting efforts have focused on seedling, these upcoming events will include the planting of more mature saplings approximately 4-5 feet tall. This approach will help improve their odds of survival and lead to immediate environmental benefits.
Local residents who have not signed up to volunteer for the event can still help by simply planting trees at their home. Careful planning and maintenance of trees can help boost property values, make properties more attractive and cut energy bills by providing shade and windbreaks. Homeowners who plant trees on their own property can log their efforts by clicking here.