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House Democrats Deem Designation of State Reptile More Important than Work on State Budget, Notes Kauffman
The day after Democrats brought to the floor of the House legislation to designate the eastern box turtle as the state reptile of Pennsylvania, Rep. Rob Kauffman (R-Cumberland/Franklin) joined a group of lawmakers in demanding that the governor and leaders in the General Assembly get down to business in enacting a balanced state budget with no tax increases.
“It is absurd that valuable time was spent debating and voting on legislation to designate a state reptile, when we are 56 days from the deadline to pass the state budget,” said Kauffman. “During Governor Ed Rendell’s tenure, we have yet to pass a state budget on time, and with the Democrats insisting on spending time on legislation like this, it is no wonder. It is high time we get down to business and put the taxpayers of Pennsylvania on the top of our priority list.”
Kauffman has joined several of his colleagues in calling for a zero-growth budget that does not increase taxes or fees. He noted that during these tough economic times, state government has to rein itself in and decrease spending while putting more money back in the pockets of Pennsylvania’s working men and women.
“Governor Rendell wants to increase the state budget to $29 billion, even though revenue figures have plummeted and the state is currently looking at a $3 billion budget deficit,” said Kauffman. “This is ludicrous. You cannot tax and spend your way out of a recession. The governor basically wants to mortgage our children’s future, and I cannot and will not support such reckless decision making.
“I predicted last year, when the governor insisted on a budget that grew more than the rate of inflation, that we would be in this very situation this year. Well, here we are and he is still not willing to deal with reality and make the tough decisions necessary in order to pass a fiscally responsible budget.”
Kauffman is urging taxpayers to join him at the Capitol in Harrisburg on June 9 for a Pennsylvania State Taxpayers’ Protest, at which time he will again demand action on a balanced budget with not tax increases. For more information on the protest, go to
“Although many children were delighted to have legislation advance through the General Assembly to name the box turtle the state reptile, I think their parents, along with taxpayers across the state, think the Legislature’s time would have been better spent working on the fiscal health of our state,” said Kauffman.
House Bill 621, which would designate the eastern box turtle the state reptile, passed the House by a vote of 177-17. Kauffman was among those voting “no.”
The governor’s state budget proposal was only introduced in the House last week and has yet to be debated.
Rep. Rob Kauffman
89th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
(717) 705-2004
(717) 264-3943
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Contact: Tricia G. Lehman
(717) 772-9840
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