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.

2024 state budget resources

State Budget

How States are Solving the Tax and Spending Problem

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 22, 2006

An overview of the provisions of various tax and spending limit initiatives on the ballot in other states, from the National Taxpayers Union.

Media

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Government Accountability

Lack of evidence to support raise

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 20, 2006

Scranton Times-Tribune editorial takes on Chief Justice Cappy’s defense of a judicial pay raise.

Media

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State Budget

Transportation Pork

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 18, 2006

Here is the listing of the $706 million in federal Transportation Earmarks for PA cited in my testimony today.

Media

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Government Accountability

Judicial Pay After Court Ruling

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 15, 2006

Here is what PA judges will make following the court ruling reinstating the judicial pay raise: http://mail.comfdnprod.wpengine.com/judgespay.pdf…

Media

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State Budget

“Pork” database passed

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 15, 2006

Reuters Story on the passage of legislation that would create a new web database of all pork barrel grants. Hopefully transparency is but the first step in reducing wasteful…

Media

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Government Accountability

Judicial pay raise outrage

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 15, 2006

WHP CBS21 coverage of the pay raise ruling, featuring video of our very own Matthew Brouillette talking with angry callers.

Media

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Government Accountability

Summary of Supreme Court Ruling on Pay Raise

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 14, 2006

The PA Supreme Court Opinion on the pay raise, issued today (view the last two pages for the Conclusion) makes the following decisions: 1) The repeal (Act 72 of…

Media

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State Budget

Earmark Showdown

  • Nathan Benefield
  • September 13, 2006

Wall Street Journal article on a couple of bills expected to come up in Congress this week that would address pork barrel spending. While these bills wouldn’t reduce spending,…

Media

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Regulation

Getting state legislators to work is costly

  • Nathan Benefield
  • July 31, 2006

Post-Gazette article on the cost to taxpayers of the travel of several state lawmakers. Just another example of a failure of many in cover to be frugal when someone…

Media

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State Budget

States Looking to Spending Caps

  • Nathan Benefield
  • July 28, 2006

While legislation limiting the growth of state spending in Pennsylvania (the “Taxpayer Fairness Act”) has stalled in the House Rules Committee, at least six states will be having ballot initiatives…

Media

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State Budget

Budgeting in Neverland

  • Nathan Benefield
  • July 26, 2006

Policy Analysis from the Cato Institute on how Congress overspends because they only hear from the spending lobby, not taxpayers, during the budget process. The same can be said…

Media

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State Budget

Whiskey and Car Keys

  • Matthew Brouillette
  • July 11, 2006

Author P.J. O’Rourke once wrote: “Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.” He must have been thinking about Gov. Rendell and…

Commentary

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State Budget

Governor Rendell’s Sense of Irony

  • Nathan Benefield
  • July 6, 2006

On the anniversary of the 2005 pay raise, Governor Rendell will be handing out pork in the Capitol … non-metaphorical pork in this case. From News Release: HARRISBURG…

Media

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State Budget

Budget Coverage

  • Nathan Benefield
  • July 3, 2006

Some press coverage of the late night/early morning state budget deal: Herald Standard (Commonwealth Foundation quoted)Pittsburgh TribPost Gazette (Commonwealth Foundation quoted)Philadelphia Inquirer (Commonwealth…

Media

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State Budget

Rendell: Budget Could Be Worse

  • Nathan Benefield
  • June 30, 2006

Governor Rendell names states who will be increasing their budgets faster than PA. Ironically, his list is identical to our list of “States we least want to emulate.” From…

Media

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State Budget

Budget expected to win support

  • June 30, 2006

Budget story in the Patriot-News… “Democrats are having a field day watching the Republicans help negotiate a budget that spends more than the 4 percent increase Rendell proposed in…

Media

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Regulation

Senators vs. Pork

  • Nathan Benefield
  • June 28, 2006

Not a game between minor league baseball teams, but three State Senators (Jane Orie, R-Allison Park, Pat Vance, R-Silver Spring Twp, and Pat Browne, R-Allentown) trying to Shift Focus…

Media

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Regulation

Oink-oink: Spend, spend, spend

  • Nathan Benefield
  • June 26, 2006

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review editorial on corporate welfare and ‘walking around money’: “Better for Pennsylvanians if their money never ‘walked’ at all.”…

Media

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Public Union Democracy

Your Tax Dollars at Work

  • Nathan Benefield
  • June 19, 2006

Fine tribute to public sector unions, paid for with your tax dollars. I guess we were wrong to identify the Historical and Museum Commission as an example of pork…

Media

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