Sen. Hughes: State Ed Funding “Unacceptable”

Says Marcellus Shale tax needed to help augment funding.

The state’s current plans for funding K-12 education are “unacceptable,” State Sen. Vincent Hughes said Friday in a letter to Philadelphia’s School Reform Commission.

The letter came a day after the Pennsylvania House passed its version of the budget that includes $70 million in funding increases, but omits many millions more that had been sought by Gov. Tom Corbett before the manifestation of a $1.5 billion budget deficit.

“Simply put, the level of education funding in the budget passed by the State House is unacceptable,” Hughes, a Philly Democrat, said in the letter addressed to SRC Chairman Bill Green.  “We all know that our teachers, parents, and students are already operating in a very difficult environment and the budget passed by the State House will only make matters worse. ”


State officials could raise ed funding through some of the following means, he said:

• Imposing a severance tax on drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale, which he said could raise $700 million.

• Fixing a so-called "pension double-dip" for a savings of $75 millin.

• Finding another $1.1 billion in unspecified savings and revenue options "without raising broad-based taxes."

The full letter below:

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.

  • billmedicare

    Tax the nat gas stupids! Leave the tax payers alone and do not give any money to the Phila School District! Let them drown!

  • Pete Elder

    I think voters would much prefer a generous tax on “All Lobbying and Campaign Contributions.”