Markosek supports budget bill, notes substantial funding for education

Freshman legislator would have liked to see funding for workers’ wages

HARRISBURG, June 26 – State Rep. Brandon Markosek, D-Allegheny, cast a “yes” vote for the budget on Tuesday, noting the bill’s substantial investments in education, job training, and no new taxes or fees, but added he was disappointed the General Appropriations bill didn’t include funding that would address workers’ wages.

“On Tuesday, a good bill that will do a lot of great things for the commonwealth passed the House. I voted for this bill in support of the initiatives that will assist in the forward progression of the commonwealth, including a substantial investment in the educational sectors of Pre-K and early childhood education; elementary and secondary basic education; special education; job training; career and technical training; school security funding; more funding to support students through PHEAA; and more.

“A key element of our job as state legislators is to work in a bipartisan fashion to pass a budget that saves taxpayers money and is passed on time. Though this budget did not raise taxes, I was disappointed to see that House Bill 790 failed to include funding for workers’ wages. Raising the minimum wage was something House Democrats were hoping to achieve this legislative session, and I believe we still need to work together in order to accomplish that goal.

“However, I voted for this bill because it still included a lot of positives for state residents. I will remain steadfast in my commitment, though, to pursuing the issues that matter most to our constituents in the coming months.”