Today is June 3, 2019, which means that a mere 27 days remain before the lights blink out on the 2018-19 fiscal year, and then sputter back on again at 12:01 a.m. on July 1 as a new one commences. The House and Senate are back in this Monday morning town after a primary season/EST seminar/court-ordered course of treatment recess. And presumably everyone’s rested and ready for the number-crunching, horse-trading, ear-bending and elbow-greasing it’ll take to get a completed spending plan onto Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk before that deadline. If you’re just tuning in, or have forgotten (and, really, who could blame you if you have?), Wolf, a Democrat now serving out his second, and final, four-year term, is pitching a $34.1 billion general fund budget that includes nearly $500 million in spending for the current fiscal year. And, as the AP reports, Wolf is also looking for legislative authorization for an additional $1.9 billion in new spending. If the budget is enacted as-is, it would raise spending by about 6 percent, over current, approved spending of $32.7 billion.
• Stephen Flemming, English teacher and certified reading specialist at Martin Luther King High School, and an adjunct professor at Delaware County Community College
• Robin Roberts, Vocal advocate for high quality public education, public school parent and Director for Parents United for Public Education
• Dale Mezzacappa, Notebook contributing editor and veteran Philadelphia education reporter.