Op-Ed: With $7 billion windfall, Pa. should focus on jobs, students

Originally published in TribLive.

Every year, Pennsylvania enacts a 1,000-page budget, full of obscure spending rules and indecipherable earmarks. Yet it’s arguably the most important vote legislators take each year because it determines our state government’s priorities for the next year.

This year’s budget talks face a rare challenge: What to do with an extra $7.2 billion of temporary covid aid sent by the federal government?

This might sound like a good problem to have, but from this surprise cash bonanza arises the temptation to double down on overspending, propping up bureaucracies, and using the funds to patch over long-term fiscal programs. Instead legislators should focus on our state’s two biggest pandemic-fueled crises: high unemployment and student learning loss.

Small business activity in this state has…

Read more at TribLive.com.