News & Brews March 3, 2023

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Pa. Dems propose >$3B increase in school funding

Yesterday, Democrat lawmakers called for a $3.15 billion “down payment” on education funding in the wake of the court ruling declaring Pa.’s system of funding education is unconstitutional. Their plan, announced by Sen. Vincent Hughes (Philadelphia and Montgomery counties), would “send an additional $750 million through the [fair funding] formula. And it would give an additional $400 million to 100 of the state’s highest-need districts.” The court ruling noted that options for reforming the system are “virtually limitless,” and as we’ve noted before, allowing money to follow the child to the school of their choice would help ensure equal access for all children to a quality education.

House Republican leaders call on Zabel to resign

Yesterday, House Republican leaders issued a formal call for Rep. Mike Zabel to resign in the wake of “multiple allegations of sexual harassment.” They further noted that House Democrat leadership have long known of the allegations against Zabel “but chose to ignore and cover up his behavior instead of taking action to protect the women in this Capitol.”

Pa. faces major budget shortfall amid aging population

The Center Square reports that Pa.’s “population is aging, but not saving enough, according to Treasurer Stacy Garrity.” And unless something changes, “Pennsylvania will face an $18 billion fiscal shortfall…. From 2020 to 2035, a lack of private savings would necessitate $14.6 billion in state spending and a $3.3 billion loss of tax revenues if current trends continue.”

Pa. poll: GOP voters prefer DeSantis to Trump

A poll of Pa. Republican voters, conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research, shows Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis leading former President Donald Trump 37% to 32% in a contest for the Republican presidential nominee, with 17% undecided. Other announced or potential candidates included in the poll didn’t get beyond the low single digits.

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