Rep. Paul Takac statement on the passage of H.B. 1461, as amended by Pennsylvania State Senate

Funding for Penn State and other state-related institutions

HARRISBURG, Nov. 15 – Rep. Paul Takac, D-Centre, released the following after House passage of H.B. 1461:

“While I am pleased that this long-overdue funding for Penn State and our other state-related institutions is finally nearing completion and the governor’s signature, I am disappointed that continued resistance from many Pennsylvania Republicans has resulted in flat year-over-year funding rather than the much-needed increase requested by the universities and supported by both the Shapiro administration and by House and Senate Democrats.

“State funding provides direct financial support to reduce tuition for Pennsylvania students and families. Therefore, this unnecessary delay has forced university administrators to make very difficult decisions -- decisions that have negatively impacted employees and their families, communities and vital programs across the commonwealth. This has been entirely due to the insertion of unrelated and divisive political issues by certain members of the Republican Caucus and their leaders. House Democrats voted on three separate occasions to increase support for Pennsylvania students, but each time fell short of the necessary two-thirds majority thanks to these harmful, politically motivated tactics.

“As a member of the House Education Committee -- and as someone who is both a beneficiary of, and lifelong advocate for, public education -- I remain fully committed to doing everything possible to make higher education more affordable and accessible for every Pennsylvania resident. Today, Pennsylvania is among the least affordable states in the entire country to earn a degree due to decades of under-investment by the state legislature. However, such short-sighted decisions simply shortchange our commonwealth. We can and must continue to push for better outcomes for our students and our future.”