Dawkins applauds education funding increase in state budget, says more could have been done for gun safety

HARRISBURG, July 7– Today state Rep. Jason Dawkins, chairman of the House Democratic Philadelphia Delegation, issued the following statement upon passage of the state budget.

“I am happy that we were able to come to an agreement so that our schools and services could be funded and not threatened by a protracted and partisan impasse,” Dawkins said. “I am very excited about the historic height in K-12 public education funding. We are talking about a nearly billion-dollar investment of new dollars that goes back to the kids of the commonwealth.”

Dawkins applauded that the budget includes a 14% basic education increase for the School District of Philadelphia and an 8% increase for special education. However, he was disappointed that more was not done for gun violence prevention, taking in consideration the large, more than $7 billion surplus on the table at beginning of budget negotiations.

“With our large surplus of state tax dollars, more funds should have been allocated to combat the gun violence problem in the city. The funding provided for school safety and mental health in schools is essential, but it’s only a drop in the bucket of what’s truly needed to address the root causes of violence and poverty.”

Dawkins also highlighted the fact that the budget approved a childcare tax credit and support for homeowners.

“With this state budget investment, people will be able to fix their homes, seniors will be able to stay in their homes thanks to additional property tax relief, and more parents can go to work knowing they have quality and affordable childcare. Overall, we are moving in the right direction and should stay focused on moving forward.”