Budget Theme: Jobs that Pay
As he has in previous years, Governor Wolf highlighted the need for “jobs that pay” in his 2017-2018 budget.
During his 2017-2018 budget address, Governor Wolf stated that “Pennsylvania should be a place where anyone who wants a good job can find one…a place where businesses large and can grow and thrive.”
Manufacturing is one of Pennsylvania’s largest industries and one of the cornerstones of the Governor’s “jobs that pay” initiative. The 2017-2018 budget partners the Commonwealth’s research universities with our Industrial Resource Centers to create and retain manufacturing jobs. Additionally, the Governor is proposing a new apprenticeship program, offering businesses up to $2,000 in grant funds for each apprentice employed, as well as $5 million for a manufacturing-to-career grant program.
Understanding the role of small businesses in the Commonwealth’s economy, the Governor is proposing to cut the red tape for businesses interacting with state government, and create a one stop shop for services and incentives available to them. A new business calling program will invest $2.5 million to expand proactive outreach to businesses and the business community.
Tourism is another one of Pennsylvania’s major industries and to that end, the Governor is proposing $6.1 million to encourage tourism in the Keystone State. And since the fabric of Pennsylvania is woven with so many local governments, a new smart cities initiative will provide $11 million for the development of smart corridors, which will layer environmental, communications, energy and transportation infrastructure.
Finally, as a nod to Pennsylvania’s workers, the Governor is proposing an increase in the minimum wage to $12.00 per hour, and the establishment of a Middle Class Task Force, charged with making policy recommendations to improve the outlook for our workers and families.