Journalists in their editorials and Politicians on their soapboxes are claiming Pennsylvania has a surplus of tax revenue. This highlights their misunderstanding or outright ignorance of both Pennsylvania's fiscal health and how the rest of the state lives.
When regular people run out of money, they stop spending. That is the same decision facing families across the commonwealth everyday. They sit around their kitchen tables figuring out what they can cut back on to stay afloat. It is rare to see politicians do this, least of all Democratic politicians.
One rare exception is Democrat Auditor General Jack Wagner. Mr. Wagner deserves credit for calling out his fellow Democrats on their ill-conceived plans to spend this "surplus" money.
When the Democrats left power in the 2010 elections, they left a multi-billion dollar deficit. Pennsylvania cannot just print money like the Federal Government nor can they pass a budget that is not in balance. So, any extra money that comes into the state's coffers should be used to retire debt.
Democrats need to understand, like Jack Wagner does, that there is no such thing as a surplus when you owe a few billion dollars.
Incidentally, as far as the source of this surplus in tax revenue, a very significant part of this is from shale drilling. You know, those companies that the Democrats insist aren't paying any taxes. We point this out to illustrate the hypocritical nature of the left that is against drilling but can't wait to spend the money it brings in.