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2016 PFB PSU Extension Infographic handout web
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The Issue:
Penn State Extension may soon be forced to take drastic steps – including ceasing operations – unless lawmakers agree to restore funding eliminated in a budget veto.

Background:
Governor Tom Wolf used his line-item veto authority in December 2015 to eliminate funding to numerous agriculture programs in a budget lawmakers presented just before Christmas. Agriculture was hard hit by the line-item veto, including the elimination of $50 million in funding approved by the General Assembly to Penn State for Extension and Research. Eliminating state funding to Penn State Extension – which uses those state dollars to leverage federal and local spending – puts the future of Extension (and programs like 4-H) in jeopardy, including the possibility of closing.


Penn State President, Eric Barron, warned that if a budget for the current year’s operations is not in place soon, furlough notices would likely be sent to more than 1,100 Extension employees. Penn State Extension is not permitted, by law, to use any tuition dollars. Instead the network of food, plant, and animal experts reaching all 67 Pennsylvania counties, rely on state, federal and local appropriations to operate.


On March 16 the Pennsylvania House and Senate passed a supplementary budget measure that would fully fund Penn State Extension and other agriculture priorities (like the Animal Health Labs, Ag Excellence programs and Fairs) for the current fiscal year. The legislation now needs the Governor’s signature. Unfortunately, the Governor has already indicated he intends to veto this bi-partisan supported budget.


Click here
to see how your
State Representative and State Senator voted on HB 1801.


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