Penn State

Penn State urges House members to break state budget impasse

Penn State’s budget had to be set in stone in time for the fiscal year that started July 1.

Pennsylvania was also set to have its financial ducks in a row at that time, but three months later, there is no movement.

On Wednesday, Penn State President Eric Barron asked the state House of Representatives to break the impasse between the legislature and the governor’s office to “at least provide us with some assurance that we will be funded this year.”

Penn State is set to receive about $230.4 million in state appropriations. Another $52.3 million goes to agricultural research and cooperative extension that impact university programs statewide. Penn College gets another $22 million.

“The absence of an appropriation would result in a direct impact on our students and their families, since these funds are used to keep tuition lower for Pennsylvania students,” said Barron in a statement. “Without this critical funding from the commonwealth, we will be unable to run our extension programs that impact Pennsylvanians in all 67 counties. This would be a devastating outcome, but we remain hopeful that our state legislators can come together in support of Penn State, which creates more than $17 billion in economic impact for the state and educates tens of thousands of students annually.”

In September, Barron talked about the importance of state funding at the university trustees’ meeting.

This is the second impasse in three years. The last one extended from July 2015 until March 2016.

Lori Falce: 814-235-3910, @LoriFalce