When it comes to balancing the state budget, lawmakers continue to offer only one solution: Cutting services for Pennsylvania's most vulnerable residents ("House Republican plan may mean more funding for Pennsylvania schools," May 10).
Legislators refuse to close corporate loopholes (although 74 percent of Pennsylvania corporations pay no income tax at all). They won't tax cigars and chewing tobacco, either (making Pennsylvania one of only two states that gives the tobacco industry a free pass). Instead of considering measures to raise revenue, lawmakers insist on hacking away at the few lifelines available to struggling families. Last week, they voted to slash nearly $500 million from the Department of Public Welfare, threatening SNAP (food stamps), Medicaid, and other programs vital to helping needy Pennsylvanians meet basic needs.
This cannot continue. I urge lawmakers to stop and answer the following question honestly: Exactly whose interests are you serving?
Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger