Budget Analyses

The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center produces a variety of reports, policy briefs, and other publications on state budget and tax policy, health care policy, education policy, poverty and public welfare, the economy, and several related issues. Below is an archive of all PBPC publications to date.

Browse by Issue: You can also browse PBPC publications by the following issue areas:

Tax and Budget     |     Education     |     Health and Family Security     |     PA Economy     |     Democracy

With ongoing negotiations over the state budget focused on property tax cuts, and the State Senate taking up a bill to eliminate property taxes, this briefing paper compares property tax elimination with two more targeted approaches that would reduce, but not eliminate property taxes: the Republican proposal that passed the Pennsylvania House in May (House Bill 504) and Gov. Wolf’s original proposal from March.

We find that property tax elimination would raise taxes on the middle class to give wealthy homeowners and businesses in wealthy communities a tax break. Both targeted approaches would be better for the middle class, but the Wolf proposal would be the best for moderate-income homeowners and would also cut non-residential property taxes the most in lower-income communities, a potential boost to community revitalization.

Gov. Wolf and legislative leaders are currently negotiating over the terms of a plan to cut property taxes which would be financed by an increase in the state sales tax rate from 6% to 7.25%. This brief analyzes the size of the sales tax rate increase by income. It also compares that impact to how much different income groups would pay with an increase in the state personal income tax rate from 3.07% to 3.57%, as proposed by Gov. Wolf in October and rejected by the Republican legislative majority and nine Western Pennsylvania Democrats.

On Tuesday, November 10th, Governor Wolf and legislative leaders announced a budget framework for 2015-16.  While an agreement could be good news, some key issues have not been addressed.

Over the past 48 hours, news report have trickled out about a tentative budget agreement between Republican legislative leaders and the Wolf Administration. Lacking the information for a full analysis, we will instead lay out criteria for evaluating any budget deal; assess what the early information indicates about the likelihood of this tentative budget agreement meeting these criteria; and suggest how the negotiators might improve the budget framework as they further develop its details.

(HARRISBURG, Pa.) -- Sept. 16, 2015 --Harrisburg has become preoccupied with budget process and tactics in recent weeks. But what Pennsylvanians need is a good budget outcome – a budget that reinvests in education, jobs and communities using revenues from a severance tax, provides property tax relief and puts the state’s fiscal house in order.

To refocus attention on the key budget choices that legislators and Gov. Wolf must make, the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center launched “Why the Budget Matters – Let’s Count the Ways.”

(HARRISBURG, PA)With state budget negotiations heating up in Harrisburg, for the first time new information-packed fact sheets are being released by the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center that reveal the real impact of Gov. Wolf's budget plan on taxpayers, homeowners, schoolchildren, minimum wage workers and other Pennsylvanians who would be affected by his proposals.

March 25, 2015

PBPC hosted its annual Pennsylvania Budget Summit in Harrisburg, providing an in-depth look at the state and federal budget plans and what they mean for communities and families across Pennsylvania. Check out online resources from the Summit.

Monthly archive