The state has $2.2 billion left in stimulus funds to spend, along with $4.9 billion in surplus tax revenue, according to SpotlightPA.org, and politicians on both sides are supporting several proposals to spend the funds in a variety of ways.
Amongst the proposals is Governor Tom Wolf’s suggestion to send $2,000 stimulus checks to some state residents. The PA Opportunity Program would put $500 million of the excess American Rescue Plan Act money toward helping families with household incomes under $80,000.
However, according to local news site WGAL.com, many Republicans are critical of that plan, saying it could worsen inflation.
Another proposal would offer grants to homeowners and landlords to make home renovations on dilapidated properties. The Whole Homes Repair Fund, which Republicans support, would help fix homes in the Coal Region before they collapse, ultimately saving the state tax dollars.
Other projects and program on the table for funding include higher education, paid family leave, and K-12 education and infrastructure, including school repairs. Both Republicans and Democrats voiced their support of putting money toward environmental efforts, including clean water projects, land preservation, state park repairs, and Chesapeake Bay clean-up efforts.
House Appropriations Committee Chair Stan Saylor said the state will take care of the Susquehanna River basin pollution issue this year, as well.
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