Skip to Navigation
University of Pittsburgh
Print This Page Print this pages

September 3, 2015

State budget, appropriations still on hold

There’s talk of stopgap budget proposals in Harrisburg as the state’s budget impasse continues into its third month. The Republican-controlled General Assembly and Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf have yet to come to terms on a fiscal year 2016 state budget, although talks are continuing.

Rep. Gene DiGirolamo (R-Bucks County) indicated that he plans to introduce a proposal to fund the state budget at last year’s levels through Oct. 31, retroactive to the July 1 start of the 2015-16 fiscal year.

“As negotiations continue on a final budget, I believe it is imperative that we immediately provide the necessary funding for the education of our children, for human service funding for our counties and all the other services that state government supports in all of our communities. My goal is to neither advantage or disadvantage anyone’s negotiating position. My goal is to assure the funding of state government is sustained during these negotiations,” DiGirolamo stated in an Aug. 28 co-sponsorship memorandum on the nascent stopgap plan.

Legislators’ inability to agree has left Pitt’s appropriation undecided, which in turn leaves the University budget — including the salary pool — in limbo.

The impasse in Harrisburg also is holding up funding for the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, preventing PHEAA from disbursing student aid funds for the programs it administers. However, like many institutions, the University is fronting students the state aid they would have received until their expected grant funds are released, so students aren’t feeling the pinch, said Ken Service, vice chancellor for communications.

Pitt is expecting at least flat funding in its FY16 state appropriation, although Wolf’s budget proposal recommended an 11 percent increase, to $151.21 million. (See June 25 University Times.)

—Kimberly K. Barlow

Filed under: Feature,Volume 48 Issue 1

Leave a Reply