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Rep. Diamond Comments on House Action to Approve the 2019-20 State Budget

Jun. 25, 2019  Download

House lawmakers have voted to support a 2019-20 General Fund budget that continues a multi-year effort to hold the line on taxes, fees and spending. Total state spending would be set at $33.997 billion, a 1.8% increase over the current fiscal year, which is in line with the rate of inflation. The plan provides for a record level of spending on education and includes a deposit of more than $250 million into the Rainy-Day Fund, the state’s primary “savings account.” Rep. Russ Diamond (R-Lebanon) offered the following comments on the spending priorities of the budget plan.

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Diamond Stands in Support of Good Jobs for Pennsylvania Bills to Boost Career and Technical Education

Mar. 25, 2019  Download

Lawmakers, students and supporters of improving workforce development programs rallied in Harrisburg on Monday to acknowledge the successful passage of a Good Jobs for Pennsylvania package of legislation by the full House. The 11-bill package would help match up interested students and individuals with the best training for their career paths. The bipartisan, career and technical education (CTE) package includes measures to address workforce shortages in business and industry, strengthen educational partnerships with employers, increase access to career oriented technical training and alleviate misperceptions regarding vocational education programs. Rep. Russ Diamond (R-Lebanon) attended the capitol event in support of the package of legislation.

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Rep. Diamond Comments Following the Governor's Budget Address

Feb. 05, 2019  Download

Gov. Tom Wolf unveiled his 2019-2020 state budget proposal on Tuesday in Harrisburg. The $34 billion spending plan represents a nearly 1 billion dollar increase in state spending over last year. Rep. Russ Diamond (R-Lebanon) said he is concerned about the Governor's proposal to pay for new spending through an additional tax on natural gas.

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Rep. Diamond Comments Following the PA House Swearing-In Ceremony and the Opening of the 2019-20 Legislative Session

Jan. 01, 2019  Download

Members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives were sworn in Tuesday in Harrisburg with the members taking the oath of office in the House chamber at noon to officially begin the 2019-20 legislative session. Republicans hold a 110-93 majority in the House with 19 newly elected Republican members. This is the fifth consecutive term that Republicans have retained majority control of the PA House. Rep. Russ Diamond (R-Lebanon) offered comments on the swearing-in ceremony and opening of the new legislative session.

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Rep. Diamond Comments on House Passage of 2018-19 State Budget

Jun. 20, 2018  Download

The Fiscal Year 2018-19 General Appropriation bill (House Bill 2121) is on its way to the state Senate for consideration after the House of Representatives passed it Thursday by a vote of 188-10. The $32.7 billion spending plan increases growth by 1.7 percent, which is below the rate of inflation (2.13 percent), requires no additional taxes or revenues and officially erases a deficit. The budget also includes a record high $12.3 billion investment in education from pre-k through 12th grade, with additional increases in funding for career and technical education as well as higher education. The budget bill is expected to be sent to the governor prior to June 30, after anticipated Senate passage.

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Rep. Diamond Comments on House Passage of Budget

Jun. 30, 2017  Download

The Pennsylvania House has passed a spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year which holds the line on state expenditures by consolidating agencies and streamlining government programs. House Bill 218 spends $32 Billion, representing an increase of less than one percent over last year’s spending plan. However, the legislature has yet to approve legislation to generate the revenue to fund the budget. House Bill 218 now awaits the Governor’s signature. Rep. Russ Diamond (R-Lebanon) said he is concerned over the unfinished portions of the budget process.

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Diamond Comments on Passage of Landmark Pension Reform Legislation

Jun. 08, 2017  Download

Legislation designed to reform Pennsylvania’s state employee and public school employee retirement systems has been approved by the Pennsylvania House. Senate Bill 1 would establish a hybrid retirement benefit plan, including defined benefit and defined contribution components. New employees would be mandatory members of the new hybrid plan.

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Diamond Comments on Governor's Budget Address

Feb. 07, 2017  Download

Governor Tom Wolf delivered his annual budget address before a joint session of Pennsylvania’s House and Senate on Tuesday in Harrisburg. The Governor proposed a $32.3 billion spending plan with no new major taxes for the upcoming fiscal year. House Republicans were encouraged by the Governor’s decision to work with lawmakers to explore several cost-saving measures in order to balance the budget.

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Rep. Russ Diamond Comments on Impacts of Protracted Budget Disagreement

Mar. 04, 2016  Download

At a press conference held in Camp Hill on Friday, Republican lawmakers emphasized the damage being done to the Commonwealth by the Governor’s decisions to cut vital funding, already approved by the legislature, for education, agriculture, corrections, and other critical services. Several House Republicans questioned the Governor’s motives in calling for increased education funding, but then personally cutting $3 Billion in the final 2015/16 budget agreement.

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Rep. Diamond Comments on Governor’s Budget Address

Feb. 09, 2016  Download

House lawmakers offered their reactions to Gov. Tom Wolf’s spending proposal for fiscal year 2016-17, which he announced today in an address before a joint session of the General Assembly. The governor’s budget plan would increase taxes on working Pennsylvanians and employers by $3.6 billion and spending by 10 percent, or $3 billion, and calls for $33.3 billion in total spending. To support his proposed spending plan the governor has proposed 15 new tax increases, including a retroactive increase in the Personal Income Tax on Pennsylvania workers.