$3 billion budget gap ball bounces into GOP lawmakers' court

Written by The Associated Press | Mar 8, 2015 4:49 AM

Photo by AP Photo/Matt Rourke

(Harrisburg) -- The $3 billion ball is in the Republicans' court.

Democratic Governor Tom Wolf's first budget proposal has been panned by Republicans who control both chambers.

That plan would raise taxes on sales, income and natural gas drilling to balance the budget and finance more than $4 billion in new education funding and aid to school districts to cut property taxes.

Republicans will be hard-pressed the next couple of months to write a plan to erase a $2 billion projected deficit and pay for an additional $1 billion-plus in rising costs.

That doesn't include providing more money to school districts, which Wolf is demanding.

Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati says Republicans aren't planning to vote for a tax increase, but he won't yet say how GOP lawmakers will find the money.

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