The 2019-20 State Budget Debate

2019-20 State Budget Priorities

The CLEAR Coalition’s member organizations — and the 1 million Pennsylvanians we represent — are urging lawmakers to support Governor Wolf proposals to raise our state’s embarrassing $7.25 an hour minimum wage; fund our schools and vital services; fix our tax code to make sure all corporations and Marcellus Shale drillers pay their fair share; and increase funding for our state system universities.

Governor Wolf proposes to:

  • Raise the state’s minimum wage to $12 per hour.
  • Close corporate tax loopholes.
  • Impose a statewide tax on the shale drillers 
  • Increase aid for public school operations and instruction by $200 million.
  • Increase funding for technical education and workforce development 

CLEAR’s members will be meeting with lawmakers across the state in the coming weeks urging them to come together and support Gov. Wolf’s vision for our Commonwealth.

We have developed a Budget Tool Kit for Pennsylvanians who want to tell their lawmakers to support the governor’s proposals. This Tool Kit is easy to use and includes CLEAR’s budget priorities, sample letters to lawmakers, and contact information for every lawmaker.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please visit our Facebook Page.

Sample Letters to lawmakers:
The CLEAR Coalition has drafted two SAMPLE letters for guidance. It is important to make sure that you use your own words and you share your own, specific concerns.

Sample #1

Dear Senator ________,

My name is _____ and I have lived in ______ for many years now. I am writing to urge you to support Governor Tom Wolf’s proposals to fix our state budget mess and fund our public schools, colleges and important state services.

We need to make sure that the state is paying its fair share for our schools. I am urging you to support Governor Tom Wolf’s proposal to increase public education funding. In addition, like most Pennsylvanians, I support a statewide tax on the Marcellus shale drillers. They should not get a free ride. 

I also support raising the minimum wage, which will increase wages for all working families.

It is time for all lawmakers to work together with the governor to address our budget problems.

Sample #2

Dear Representative _______,

I am writing to urge you to support raising the state minimum wage and a tax on the shale drillers to make sure our public schools are funded and my children can receive a good education. Governor Tom Wolf has proposed increasing school funding and taxing the shale drillers to help pay for this funding and I believe all lawmakers should support this approach.

This is just common sense. Every other state that has a natural gas industry charges a statewide tax. In addition, most of this tax would be paid to consumers who do not even line in Pennsylvania.

Please show your support for your constituents and all Pennsylvanians by voting to impose a fair and reasonable shale tax.