Senior Vice President
An Ohio native, Nate holds an undergraduate degree in political science and economics and a master’s degree in public service management from DePaul University in Chicago. He also completed his doctoral studies (ABD) in political science at Loyola University, also in Chicago.
Nate joined the Commonwealth Foundation in 2005. Now as senior vice president, he provides strategic leadership as well as operational oversight spanning policy analysis, government relations, marketing, and communications.
Nate has researched and written extensively on public policy issues including the state budget, public sector labor reform, government spending and taxes, liquor privatization, education, and economic development. Under Nate’s policy leadership, the Commonwealth Foundation’s work on public sector pension law helped drive the bipartisan pension reform of 2017, heralded by the Wall Street Journal and Washington Post as an example for other states to follow.
Nate has testified numerous times before state legislative committees and is often called upon by legislators and members of the media to provide expertise. He is a frequent commentator on both television and radio, and his writings have appeared across the state and nationally in outlets including the Philadelphia Inquirer, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Patriot-News, and Weekly Standard.
Nate’s favorite rock song and personal motto are both “Don’t Stop Believin.”
Despite Name-Calling, Wolf’s Tax Hike is the Largest
The Wolf administration continues to deny basic facts about their original proposed tax hike. Instead of responding with facts, the governor's staff relies on name-calling and personal attacks. The Altoona Mirror…
MediaRead More: Despite Name-Calling, Wolf’s Tax Hike is the Largest
Criminal Justice Reform
2012 Corrections Reform Still Paying Off
Yesterday, Gov. Wolf and Secretary of Corrections John Wetzel announced that Pennsylvania’s prison population declined last year by the largest amount since 1971. The number of imates declined by…
MediaRead More: 2012 Corrections Reform Still Paying Off
Fiscal Code Protects Kids and Jobs
Today, the Pennsylvania House passed a revised fiscal code, HB 1327, to implement parts of the state budget. The fiscal code explains how revenues will be distributed, including transfers…
MediaRead More: Fiscal Code Protects Kids and Jobs
Budget Hostages Finally Freed?
While Wolf released the hostages of the past six months, he made sure he could keep using children as “pressure points” by using his line-item veto to cut $3.1 billion…
CommentaryRead More: Budget Hostages Finally Freed?
Public Union Democracy
Union Dues Fund New Political Attack Ads
America Works USA launched a new round of political attack ads opposing the latest state budget. These highly misleading ads again talk about “cuts to education.” However, the…
MediaRead More: Union Dues Fund New Political Attack Ads
Is Gov. Wolf Ignoring Credit Rating Agencies?
Last week, Gov. Wolf once again resorted to defending his latest budget vetoes citing the fear of credit rating downgrades. Oddly, he seems to miss that pension reform and…
MediaRead More: Is Gov. Wolf Ignoring Credit Rating Agencies?
Wolf Signs Stop-Gap Budget With Punitive Line-Item Vetoes
This morning, Gov. Tom Wolf signed the state budget on his desk, using his line-item veto (and item-reduction veto) power to cut the spending by more than $6 billion, targeting certain…
MediaRead More: Wolf Signs Stop-Gap Budget With Punitive Line-Item Vetoes
Wolf Misleads About Education “Cuts”
On Christmas Eve, Gov. Tom Wolf posted a blog attacking Republicans and the “extremist” budget now sitting on his desk—which passed the Senate on a bipartisan 33-17 vote. Wolf…
MediaRead More: Wolf Misleads About Education “Cuts”
Senate Passes Budget, Sends to Governor
Things have changed quickly in the Capitol this week. On Monday, we wrote about a potential House vote on an emergency funding bill. That plan was scrapped. Yesterday, we talked…
MediaRead More: Senate Passes Budget, Sends to Governor
Framework Dead, Time for a No-Tax Hike Spending Plan
Despite legislative action this past weekend, a “framework budget” and a looming vote to raise taxes now appear to be off the table. The next step must be to pass…
MediaRead More: Framework Dead, Time for a No-Tax Hike Spending Plan
Santa Claus Budgeting
With Christmas fast approaching, children are busy creating wish lists for Santa Claus. While most kids eventually outgrow a belief in Santa — and realize it’s their family buying their…
CommentaryRead More: Santa Claus Budgeting
Spending Increases in the “Framework Budget”
As pointed out yesterday, one of the six sticky items in the Pennsylvania budget negotiations is how much taxpayer money to spend. The $30.788 billion “framework budget” passed by…
MediaRead More: Spending Increases in the “Framework Budget”
Six Unresolved Issues in PA Budget
The PA House is back in session this week, “sorting through hundreds of pages of legislation” related to the state budget. As Bob points out, while passing a…
MediaRead More: Six Unresolved Issues in PA Budget
With Details, Wolf Budget “Framework” Looks Even Worse
Now that the Pennsylvania Senate has begun passing legislation, taxpayers can finally see what’s in Gov. Wolf’s “framework” for a new budget. Based on the passage of SB 1073 and…
MediaRead More: With Details, Wolf Budget “Framework” Looks Even Worse
Do New Budget Plans Protect Taxpayers?
Details of a proposed budget “framework” are slowly emerging. The Senate has advanced a General Fund spending plan, which seems to have Gov. Wolf’s support, of about $30.79…
MediaRead More: Do New Budget Plans Protect Taxpayers?
A Brief History of Wolf’s Tax Hikes
Yesterday, the State House of Representatives announced they were moving off the latest Wolf tax hike proposal and onto a new plan that called for less spending and fewer…
MediaRead More: A Brief History of Wolf’s Tax Hikes
Wolf’s “Pressure” Causes Real Pain
After five months without a state budget, three failed tax hike plans, and two vetoed stop-gap plans, Gov. Wolf refuses to abandon his harmful strategy of holding children, abuse victims,…
MediaRead More: Wolf’s “Pressure” Causes Real Pain
Yet Another Tax Hike Proposal
Details are slowly emerging about a potential fifth tax hike proposal in state budget negotiations. This comes after Gov. Wolf’s most recent plan to raise the state sales tax…
MediaRead More: Yet Another Tax Hike Proposal
No One Wants Higher Taxes
The latest reports out of the state Capitol suggest that including a sales tax increase in the budget framework—which we addressed earlier—is off the table. Turns out, lawmakers weren’t too keen on…
MediaRead More: No One Wants Higher Taxes
Tax Shifts and Education Spending
As proposals to reduce, reform, or (mostly) eliminate school property taxes continue to be debated in Harrisburg, many readers have asked about our position on a dollar-for-dollar tax shift,…
MediaRead More: Tax Shifts and Education Spending
How is Property Tax Relief Doled Out?
Among the many questions in a tentative state budget deal is how revenue from the sales tax increase would be distributed. The Associated Press notes this will be…
MediaRead More: How is Property Tax Relief Doled Out?