FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
State Rep. Mike Sturla
Chairman, Democratic Policy Committee
Democratic Policy Committee looks at budget cuts’ impact in NW Pa.
ERIE, March 19 – The House Democratic Policy Committee held a hearing Monday on the local impact of Gov. Tom Corbett’s proposed state budget cuts at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center in Erie, according to Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster.
Local lawmakers, Reps. John Hornaman, Flo Fabrizio and Pat Harkins, all D-Erie, requested the committee hearing.
Testimony focused on the projected impact that two years of cuts will have on the availability and delivery of services to residents in northwest Pennsylvania including seniors, those with disabilities, children and other at-risk residents.
“Residents across the state will feel the harmful effects of Governor Corbett’s back-to-back budget cuts,” Sturla said. “It is no accident that his poll numbers drop when he balances his budgets on the backs of our seniors, students and most vulnerable neighbors.”
“This was a great opportunity for the public to listen to and weigh in on some of the most important issues concerning the proposed Corbett budget cuts and how they will impact our area of the commonwealth,” Harkins said. “I was happy to bring the House Policy Committee to Erie for some spirited discussion of the issues of the day.”
Hornaman added: “This was important to listen to those on the front lines about the human impact from this year’s proposed budget cuts. What does it really mean to those who are disabled, or those who need medical care? What does it mean when budget cuts become amputations and entire social and medical programs disappear?”
Those testifying at the hearing included: Heather Arnet, chief executive officer, Women and Girls Foundation; Linda King, executive director, SafeNet; Shona Eakin, executive director, Voices for Independent Living; Carl Berry, director of human resources, Community Resources for Independence; and Sean Wiley, director of Saint Vincent Foundation and Legislative Affairs, Saint Vincent Health Center.
For more information about the Policy Committee and hearing materials, visit www.pahouse.com/PolicyCommittee.