State Senate Democratic Leader Robert J. Mellow (D-Lackawanna) and Senate Democratic Appropriations Chairman Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) today issued the following statement in response to the Governor’s call for budget cuts.

“We share the Governor’s view that the nation’s struggling economy will make this an extraordinary and difficult budget year.

“With the state facing a potential $2.3 billion deficit, it is important that all options remain on the table, including legislative funds.
“We have been and remain open to suggestions to close the budget gap. We owe it to the governor to consider his recommendations. This is still the beginning of the budget process. Senate Democrats have been regularly meeting with leaders of all the other legislative caucuses. We all recognize that difficult choices will have to be made.

“There are no sacred cows in any budget line item.

“We will continue to evaluate all possible options in order to arrive at a balanced and timely budget that meets the needs of all Pennsylvanians. The next important step in the process is the governor’s budget presentation. We are anxious to hear what the governor has to say.”