Fitzgerald urges lawmakers to return to Harrisburg to finalize budget

PHILADELPHIA, July 18 – State Rep. Isabella Fitzgerald, D-Phila., released the following statement urging Speaker Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny, to call the House back to Harrisburg to wrap up the 2017-18 state budget:

“On June 30, I voted for a budget that would increase education funding in Philadelphia by $34 million. While I have worked with my colleagues to find a way to pay for it, House Republican leaders have failed to come up with any clear solutions. However, Democrats have presented several solutions to generate new and more reliable streams of revenue our Commonwealth needs.

“We can start by raising the minimum wage and implementing a shale tax on wealthy gas drillers. A minimum wage worker in Pennsylvania would have to work 83 hours a week in order to rent a modest one-bedroom home without any assistance. Not only would increasing the minimum wage give Philadelphia families more money in their pockets, but it would even save our Commonwealth about $50 million.

“I am ready to get back to work and fight to balance our budget and make sure that Pennsylvanians receive the services they need. The Republican leadership needs to return to Harrisburg and let us do our jobs. Because if they don’t, our children who need that $34 million will be hurt the most.”