Pennsylvania State Republicans said the money should be kept for a recession instead of helping families in need.
On Monday, Governor Wolf pitched his plan to provide a $2,000 check to a quarter million Pennsylvania families. The governor said, “he's not giving up on calling on Republican lawmakers to pass his Pennsylvania Opportunity Program.”
Instead of sitting on the surplus, Governor Tom Wolf wants to use a half billion of the state's $15 billion surplus to send a $2,000 check to individuals or households earning under $80,000 to qualify for a check.
"You want to spend it on gas, on rent, on taxes, on food, whatever. You have $2,000 to spend and it's your decision. It’s totally up to you. We have the money. Nobody is being asked to pay any more in taxes. I'm not sure why anybody would be against this.”
Pennsylvania Republican leaders, who at least through November control the state Senate and the state House, feel this is just another political stunt to spend the state surplus money that should be saved for a possible recession. Currently, Pennsylvania gas prices are $4.121 which is higher than the National average gas price which is $3.84 according to AAA. State Democrats feel millions of families need this help now.
"Nearly 40 percent of those living in Allegheny County and across this commonwealth who are employed are not making enough to make ends meet," says state Rep. Sara Innamorato, a Lawrenceville Democrat. To get those families the help they need, Governor Wolf's plan will need to go through legislative approval.