Skip to main content

PathWays PA Special Budget Alert - July 8, 2009

PathWays PA Budget Alert!

We are currently in the second week of the fiscal year, and unfortunately with no budget for Pennsylvania in sight. While the Governor and General Assembly are in negotiations, important programs are still at risk of being cut. Please keep reminding your legislators of what programs Pennsylvania cannot afford to cut.

To help stay up to date, PathWays PA will send a Budget Alert every Wednesday until the budget is complete. Particular attention will be given to specific programs, such as Industry Partnerships and Child Care Work Subsidies, which provide Pennsylvania’s workers with training and supports so they can work even in these tough economic times.

For more information throughout the week on the budget and other issues, be sure to check out the PathWays PA Policy Blog.

A Personal Story

Maris Grove, a retirement community that takes part in the Industry Partnership (IP) program, has worked with PathWays PA to provide training for workers.

According to Kathy Ardekani, a Healthcare Counselor at Maris Grove, the IP classes give new opportunities to people working there: “Once people know what is available to them, it certainly opens up a whole new world that they absolutely did not know existed.”

Caregivers who had not yet become Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA’s) found that the IP classes bring new opportunities for growth. “Just even speaking to them about the programs being offered brought those care managers to tears; it gives them hope and it gives them a possibility for their future.”

Employees participating in IP’s earn new skills and credentials, and “having those credentials behind their names improves their possibilities for better employment.” The programs offered through the IPs open up new doors for individuals who otherwise would have been stuck in a position where they are unable to earn a self-sufficient wage.

Industry Partnerships

Take Action! Industry Partnerships are consortiums that allow employers to improve and expand their workforce by bringing together companies committed to the development of their workforce.
  • This program provides workers with access to training that gives them the skills necessary to maintain jobs and obtain employment with sufficient wages so workers can adequately support their families.
  • In Pennsylvania, more than 6,300 businesses are involved with more than 70 Industry Partnerships across the state and more than 70,000 workers have been trained since 2005.
  • On average, those workers have seen their wages rise by 6.62 percent within the first year after receiving the training.
  • To read more about how the Industry Partnership program is helping in one county please click here.

Child Care Work Subsidies

Take Action! The Child Care Works Subsidies allow parents to afford to work by assisting them with the expense of child care.
  • For many parents the cost of child care may be more than they bring home in a paycheck.
  • Currently in Pennsylvania, over 16,000 are eligible for the child care subsidies but are currently on the waitlist, where some families remain for months.
  • In the meantime, they must pay more than they can afford for child care, provide childcare through an unreliable patchwork of friends, family, or substandard facilities, or risk losing their jobs at a time when employment is hard to find.
  • For more information please see a new report from PCCY, “Child Care Works, A Program with a Growing Need

Adult Education and Family Literacy

Take Action
! Adult education and family literacy are especially important during this recession to ensure that families have the opportunity to gain the education they need to be or become self sufficient.

CHIP – Cover All Kids

Take Action
! During the past three years, CHIP has provided comprehensive health insurance coverage for thousands of children throughout Pennsylvania who would not have been eligible without the Cover All Kids program.
  • However, current budget proposals rescind this CHIP provision, which could result in up to 12,000 kids being cut from the program.
  • Even during an economic crisis, it is important to pay attention to the long-term effects of short-term cuts.
  • A recent report from Rice University puts the cost of health insurance through age 18 at $7,451, while the benefits equate to as much at $15,000.

Budget Update

The latest budget proposal has $72 million in reduction. Cuts include:

• $34 million from the Department of Public Welfare
• $14 million from the Department of Education
• $7.5 million from the Department of Community and Economic Development

The current understanding is that the bulk of the cuts will come in the form of layoffs, as many as 800. At a time when more people than ever before need services their questions and claims will be have to be handled by fewer employees, which will likely result in people missing out on critical benefits.

Another $50-70 million may be cut by shifting projects to the capital budget.


Popular posts from this blog

Are You Registered to Vote?

As we get closer to the November elections, Google searches on how to register are increasing, which begs the question: Are you registered? Do you know how to sign up?

Pennsylvania and many other states require voter registration before Election Day - in Pennsylvania's case, voters must be registered one month ahead of time.  So if you recently moved, just turned 18, haven't voted in a while, or never registered before, the time to sign up is now.

PathWays PA has partnered with Rock the Vote to offer voter registration through this blog! You can fill out the form below to register or to make sure that you are registered.

Please take the time to register, and also consider pledging to vote in support of your economic values at!

PS - click here to share a voter registration link on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+!

Register Now for National Audio Conferences on Job Scheduling

From our friends at CLASP Register now for three national audio conferences on job scheduling! Job schedules matter in many ways. For all workers, it helps when an employer is responsive to a request for a needed schedule change. And far too many workers have volatile and potentially destabilizing schedules. If you don't know when you are supposed to be at work until the last minute, how do you arrange child care or transportation? If your total hours fluctuate from week to week, how do you budget for rent and food? To address these issues and emerging policy opportunities, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) is hosting and sponsoring three Job Schedules Matter audio conferences.

The conferences, which are co-sponsored by the Center for Popular Democracy and the National Women's Law Center, will include comments from U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Congressman George Miller on why they introduced the Schedules that Work Act. You'll also hear from workers about th…

Register for FRAC's Federal Nutrition Program Conference Calls

The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) will host two public conference calls in October. Information on the calls follows below:
Breakfast Matters - Effective Messaging: Getting Positive Press in your Community

Thursday October 11, 3 – 4 pm ET
Click here to register.
Learn tips from a national communications firm about how to place your stories with local media and receive positive press coverage for your program.

Presenters: * Jon Dickl, School Nutrition Director, Knox County Schools, Tennessee
* Amber LaCroix, BRG Communications

Afterschool Meals Matter - Community Partnerships
Wednesday, October 17, at 1:00 pm EST

Click here to register.
Learn how you can connect with a myriad of community partners, from parent groups to corporate volunteer programs, who can offer you and your program their time, energy, and support. Community partners can assist you with meal preparation, programming, outreach to increase your participation, and ultimately to help build up community support and in…