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Union officials declare support for Gov. Wolf budget, which includes middle-class tax increase

Union officials or union-funded organizations made up the majority of listed supporters of the budget plan put forward by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, which includes a large tax hike on middle class taxpayers.

Wolf released a list of groups and individuals who support his plan on his website. Of those, four are union officials, one is a union, and three are union-funded organizations.

“The governor’s plan has received broad support from education professionals, good government groups, faith leaders, labor organizations, environmental advocates and others,” says the press release.

Labor supporters of the budget include Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) President Rich Askey, Service Employees International Union (SEIU) executive Gabe Morgan, Pennsylvania AFL-CIO President Rick Bloomingdale and Secretary-Treasurer Frank Snyder, and United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW).

Labor-funded supporters include Pennsylvania Schools Work, Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, and We the People Pennsylvania.

Some are concerned that the nearly 50% tax increase proposed by Wolf could further slow the state’s economy, which is already hurting from government mandated covid-19 shutdowns.

While the budget is unlikely to make it through the Republican-led legislature, it sets the stage for future battles over spending in Pennsylvania.

Suzanne Bates

Suzanne Bates is Senior Writer and Researcher with Americans for Fair Treatment, a community of current and former public-sector workers offering resources and support to exercise their First Amendment rights. Prior to joining Americans for Fair Treatment in 2020, Suzanne worked as a journalist for the Associated Press, as Policy Director with the Yankee Institute, as a contributor for The Hartford Courant, and as a regular commentator for WNPR’s The Wheelhouse.