Education funding increase brings budget ‘yes’ vote from McNeill

HARRISBURG, June 20 – State Rep. Jeanne McNeill, D-Lehigh, issued the following statement regarding today’s House of Representatives passage of the $32.7 billion state budget:

“Investments in education are important because they show our commitment to putting Pennsylvania’s children on a positive path for their future. That all starts with adequately funding pre-kindergarten and Head Start programs,” said McNeill, who voted yes on her first state budget since taking office in January to replace her late husband Dan, who previously served the 133rd District.

McNeill said the House-passed 2018-19 General Fund budget includes the following:

  • $100 million increase in basic education.

  • $25 million increase in Pre-K Counts and Head Start.

  • $15 million increase for special education.

  • $15 million increase for the State System of Higher Education.

  • $30 million for Career and Technical Education.

As a former skills trainer for 16 years for young adults with special needs, McNeill was pleased to see the base program for services to people with disabilities will serve an additional 1,500 people due to a $22.5 million increase for new enrollees.

“We also address the ongoing heroin and opioid epidemic by continuing funding for statewide centers of excellence, and the prescription drug monitoring program. In addition, the budget includes new funding for an initiative to provide home visiting services for families affected by substance use disorder,” she said.

McNeill said the spending plan reflects priorities offered in the House Democrats' Plan For PA, which includes supporting quality schools, good jobs and fair taxes for all Pennsylvanians. More information about the Plan For PA is available at www.planforpa.com.