Governor’s 2024-25 Budget proposal shows historic investments in education, minimum wage, small businesses & other issues important to Parker administration 

PHILADELPHIA – Mayor Cherelle L. Parker today released a statement announcing optimistic support for Governor Shapiro’s 2024-25 proposed budget during his PA State Budget Address on Tuesday, February 6. “I traveled to Harrisburg today to hear Governor Shapiro’s 2024-25 Budget Address, and I appreciated important elements of his proposal, specifically his plans to increase funding for Basic Education in Pennsylvania by nearly $1.1 billion. This proposed investment in children and students will mean a substantial increase in education funding for Philadelphia – which we strongly support in the Parker administration.“Nearly $900 million of the increased education funding proposal is a first-year adequacy investment recommended by the Basic Education Funding Commission. This is an important first step by our Governor and a good start towards remedying historic, unconstitutional inadequacies in how Pennsylvania funds public education. I listened carefully to the Governor’s proposals, along with Philadelphia Council President Kenyatta Johnson and other Pennsylvania mayors from across the Commonwealth.“I’ll advocate with my entire team, including Philadelphia’s new education office led by Dr. Debora Carrera and Sharon C. Ward, for every last dollar to benefit the School District of Philadelphia. We’ll convene every important stakeholder and listen to their views on the Governor’s education proposal, including the men and women of organized labor who work every day in our schools, and parents too. We’ll advocate for our priorities – including year-round schools and out-of-school programming. Our children and students deserve a full loaf – not crumbs — we’ll fight to obtain that.“The Governor proposes significant increases in funding for higher education in our Commonwealth, another win for Philadelphia. His budget is proposing $975 million for a new system that combines our community colleges and PASSHE schools – 15 percent more than last year’s investment in state-owned universities. It proposes a five percent funding increase for state-related universities – Penn State, Temple, Lincoln and Pitt – which we strongly support as well. The proposed support for community colleges is critical to our own efforts to support and enhance educational opportunity for students at Philadelphia Community College. “The Governor’s Budget proposes an increase in the minimum wage to $15 an hour. My administration strongly endorses this and will fight for its passage in the General Assembly. If the increase is approved, it will be the most significant difference in raising the standard of living for working people and their families living at or below the poverty level – across Philadelphia and the region. It’ll make Pennsylvania more economically competitive with neighboring states that have raised their minimum wage already.“I am grateful to see the Governor’s Budget invests $600 million to increase Pennsylvania’s competitiveness and deliver real economic growth while also proposing $25 million for the Main Street Matters program that helps small businesses – the backbone of our Commonwealth and our great city of Philadelphia.“We’re glad to see the Governor’s proposal to increase funding for public transportation by $282 million in our Commonwealth, including $160 million for SEPTA. I’ll await data analysis of this proposal, to better understand the fiscal impact of this budget on public transportation in Philadelphia, including on safety and cleanliness, along with its impact on our own budget proposal.“Council President Johnson and I will seek all the necessary funding that SEPTA needs to provide a safe, efficient transportation system for city and regional riders.“There are other important proposals in the Governor’s budget that impact Philadelphia – including funding for affordable housing and to promote home preservation – priorities for our city and administration. We support them.“We have a chance to make real change to build safer communities, become more competitive economically, and invest in our students. Governor Shaprio’s proposal is a good start and I’m optimistic. In the days, weeks and months ahead, my budget and fiscal and legislative teams will closely analyze this proposal, and we will work with legislative leaders, the Philadelphia delegation and my intergovernmental affairs roundtable to ensure we’re doing everything in our power to secure every dollar necessary to help meet Philadelphia’s priorities and challenges as we work to make our city the safest, cleanest and greenest city in America, with economic opportunity for all.”