Diversion Continues of Highway Funds to the State Police
The General Assembly took significant steps in passing a FY 2016-17 state budget on June 30th and sent it to the Governor’s Desk. The problem is the Governor hasn’t signed it and stated publically that he would not do so until a companion revenue bill reaches his desk. The Revenue Bill is a key component of the state budget process and is where all the tax authority and revenue streams are legislated in order to pay for the annual spending plan. What is unclear at this point is what will happen as the legislative leaders attempt to negotiate a solution. The Governor may send the budget bill back to the General Assembly if a revenue package is not achieved. Go here for a local story by PennLive on the budget stalemate.
The budget that is pending before the Governor would shift nearly $802 million in Motor License Fund (MLF) monies to the PA State Police. This number is up from the current $755 million level but falls short from the $814 million price tag that Governor Wolf requested back in February.
In the final days before the July 4th recess, House and Senate leaders responded to industry grassroots efforts and reduced the diversion amount below the Governor’s proposed $814 level. Several House and Senate members specifically cited they were contacted by industry and communicated that to budget negotiators before developing the budgetary language that was eventually approved. Should the governor send back the budget bill, this would trigger another opportunity for industry to call upon their elected officials to hold the line at $755 million of Motor License Fund monies to be diverted to the State Police.
APC will continue to monitor the budget process and continue its call for no additional highway funds be diverted to fund the State Police operations.
For more information on the issue: