Op-Ed: Pa.’s out-of-control spending is driving away residents
Originally published in the Pittsiburgh Tribune-Review Gov. Tom Wolf recently declared 2022 a “magical year” for the Pennsylvania budget, citing the possibility of a surplus. However, Pennsylvania’s Independent Fiscal…Read More: Op-Ed: Pa.’s out-of-control spending is driving away residents
Pennsylvania’s complex state budget has enabled policymakers to keep taxpayers in the dark when it comes to state spending. Year after year, some elected officials use budget gimmicks to both make the budget appear balanced and to secure their own agendas. Pennsylvanians deserve reforms that bring true transparency to the budgeting process. We must limit spending growth to a sustainable rate, ensuring the state government—like hardworking taxpayers—live within its means.
Slicing Pennsylvania’s Finances, Part 3
The state government uses special entities to borrow in excess of the constitutional debt limit and make loans and guarantees that would otherwise be illegal.
ReportRead More: Slicing Pennsylvania’s Finances, Part 3
Policy Recommendations to Fight COVID-19 in Pennsylvania
As Pennsylvania faces its greatest crisis in decades, it is imperative that legislators take the lead and enact key heath care, education, and budget reforms to help Pennsylvania families and small…
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No Easy Pass This Year on Cost Overruns
Legislators are questioning the administration's chronic overspending habit, but they aren't getting many answers.
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State System Error: Proposed Scholarship Program is a Bailout
Governor Wolf's scholarship plan is a disguised bailout for the financially distressed State System colleges.
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Three Steps to an Honest Budget: Fiscal Reform Priorities 2020-2021
Our legislative roadmap to a balanced budget, a spending limit and a more transparent fiscal process.
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Where Have All the Human Service Dollars Gone?
Nearly half of Pennsylvania's budget goes to human services or welfare. Governor Wolf wants to increase human service spending by $1.4 billion next year. But how well are these programs…
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5 Takeaways from Governor Wolf’s 2020 Budget Address
Governor Wolf unveiled his sixth budget proposal today. Here are five key takeaways.
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Lawmakers Send Message to Wolf on Eve of Budget Address
February 3, 2020, Harrisburg, Pa. — Today, on the eve of Gov. Wolf’s sixth state budget address, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed a much-needed fiscal reform called the…
Press ReleaseRead More: Lawmakers Send Message to Wolf on Eve of Budget Address
The Road to Better Infrastructure
Anyone who has ever driven on Pennsylvania’s roads knows this state is filled with structurally deficient bridges—3,770 to be exact—and that the skill of artfully swerving around potholes is essential…
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Mid-Year Budget Briefing: $779 Million Projected Overspend
This week is the midpoint of the commonwealth fiscal year, which ends on June 30. Every year, as required by law, the Office of the Budget gives a mid-year budget briefing…
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Criminal Justice Reform
CF’s 2020 Vision
The Commonwealth Foundation’s mission sounds pretty simple: transform free-market ideas into public policies so all Pennsylvanians can flourish. Accomplishing that mission—with a divided government, powerful special interests, and a diverse…
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How to Make an Easy Six Million
A week ago the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office announced charges against Wing Tat Chiu and Ivy Hiu-Ying Li, a married couple whom they accuse of earning $6 million in illegal…
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Economic Freedom and Flourishing in Pennsylvania
We live in a free country, but when it comes to our economy, Pennsylvanians aren’t free. Unpredictable regulation makes owning a business a huge risk in Pennsylvania, and when it…
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It Won’t Get Easier: Our Take on the State’s Five Year Outlook
Last week the Independent Fiscal Office (IFO) presented its annual set of fiscal and economic projections for the next five years. The full report and summary presentation are available…
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Pennsylvania’s Overspending: A $1 Billion-Per-Year Disaster in the Making
November 15, 2019, Harrisburg, Pa. — A new report from the Pennsylvania Independent Fiscal Office projects that state government will run annual deficits around $1 billion for…
Press ReleaseRead More: Pennsylvania’s Overspending: A $1 Billion-Per-Year Disaster in the Making
Pennsylvania Needs the Ramsey Method
High debt, reckless spending, and impending financial ruin. That description fits both Pennsylvania and budget guru Dave Ramsey’s life before he achieved financial stability. The Ramsey method has helped millions of…
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Pa. Voters Support the Taxpayer Protection Act
Nearly 2/3rds of Pennsylvanians support the Taxpayer Protection Act.
PollRead More: Pa. Voters Support the Taxpayer Protection Act
Slicing Pennsylvania’s Finances, Part 2
The state legislature controls less than half of all state revenue. The rest is on autopilot, flowing automatically through a maze of accounts and undermining the constituional plan for accountabilty…
Fact SheetRead More: Slicing Pennsylvania’s Finances, Part 2
Good Returns Won’t Close the Gap
The state teachers’ pension fund, PSERS, just reported a 6.7% return over the past twelve months. That is a very good investment return. Sadly, when starting from a deep…
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Pensions and Pa’s Poor Fiscal Health
Pennsylvania recently underwent a “fiscal physical’ and didn’t exactly come out with a clean bill of health. Truth in Accounting, an economic think tank, recently released its report on the…
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Soda Taxes Target the Poor
Soda may not be on the list of Seven Deadly Sins but try telling that to lawmakers in Philadelphia. On January 1, 2017, the city instituted a tax of 1.5…
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