Center for Taxes & Fiscal Responsibility

The Center for Taxes & Fiscal Responsibility works to reduce the size, scope, and “tax-take” of state government; restore the government sector to its proper and limited role in our lives; and make government more open, transparent, and accountable to citizens.




Research Items

FEBRUARY 11, 2016 | News Release by COMMONWEALTH FOUNDATION

True Cost of Wolf's Budget: Nearly $14,000 Per Worker

Did you know the state budget’s true cost is more than double Gov. Wolf’s proposed $33.3 billion budget? For the first time, Pennsylvania’s total operating budget—the true cost of state government—could reach an incredible $80 billion. That's a staggering $13,672 per worker

FEBRUARY 9, 2016 | News Release by COMMONWEALTH FOUNDATION

Wolf Doubles Down: Highest Spending Increase in 25 Years

Today, Gov. Tom Wolf doubled down on his tax-and-spend agenda, proposing a $3 billion spending increase—a 10 percent bump, the largest in 25 years—requiring broad-based tax increases of $850 per family of four.

FEBRUARY 8, 2016 | Policy Memo by JAMES PAUL

Pennsylvania Education Spending Trends

Pennsylvania school districts spent $26.1 billion in 2013-14, an all-time high, according to the latest data from the Pennsylvania Department of Education. This represents a $600 million increase from 2012-13. Districts spent $15,019 per student in 2013-14, up from $14,621 in 2012-13

FEBRUARY 8, 2016 | Policy Memo by NATHAN BENEFIELD

A Brief History of Wolf's Tax Hikes

In 2015, Gov. Tom Wolf proposed five broad-based tax hikes on working families—each of which was eventually rejected by state lawmakers. Here's some background on each of Gov. Wolf’s tax demands.

FEBRUARY 8, 2016 | Policy Memo by BOB DICK

Redesigning Government to Balance State and Local Budgets

Pennsylvania taxpayers shoulder the 15th highest state and local tax burden in the country. Consequently, the Keystone State has seen an exodus of working people. Unsustainable growth in state government spending has fueled this high (and growing) tax burden.

FEBRUARY 8, 2016 | Policy Points by COMMONWEALTH FOUNDATION

How Does Pennsylvania's Tax Burden Compare?

Pennsylvania currently has the 15th highest state and local tax burden in the country. Yet Gov. Wolf proposed historic tax hikes last year and continues to press for tax increases. Here’s an overview of Pennsylvania’s tax burden.

FEBRUARY 8, 2016 | Policy Memo by NATHAN BENEFIELD

Reversing the Status Quo in Pennsylvania

Higher government spending and raising taxes—while ignoring key fiscal reforms—is the status quo in Pennsylvania. For 45 years, government spending has steadily risen, increasing by an inflation-adjusted $13,800 per family of four or $3,450 more per resident.

FEBRUARY 3, 2016 | News Availability by COMMONWEALTH FOUNDATION

Wolf to Pension Commission: 'You're Fired!'

The latest casualty of Gov. Tom Wolf’s “my way or the highway” approach to governing is the independent agency tasked with evaluating state pension systems and providing cost and benefit analyses. This week, the Wolf administration confirmed plans to eliminate the Public Employee Retirement Commission (PERC).

FEBRUARY 2, 2016 | Commentary by MATTHEW BROUILLETTE

Is Pa. Budget Groundhog Day Ahead?

Instead of changing course entering the new budget season, Wolf appears poised to continue governing by attack ad. No wonder the latest polling shows Wolf’s approval is lower now than at the same point in Corbett’s administration.

FEBRUARY 2, 2016 | News Availability

Myth vs. Fact as Wolf Announces Education Plans

The reality is, state taxpayers are already paying enough for public education. The governor and lawmakers must find smarter ways to spend this money, not keep asking for more.

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