The state House of Representatives passed a temporary budget with a general appropriation of $25.8 billion Tuesday.

The budget will fund the next five months, with the appropriation of the final seven months to come later in the 2020 fiscal year.

State Rep. Rich Irvin believes it will provide the commonwealth with a stable platform to make responsible future decisions.

“I look at it as a five month stabilization budget designed to move the state forward and offer more time to manage the unknowns while giving flexibility to look at the budget. Since changing tax collection to July and August, we’ll have a lot more information after that to see what revenues are coming in,” he said.

One of the biggest allocations will go to statewide education.

Pre-K through 12th grade, special education, career and technical education and higher education would be fully funded for the next year under the plan.

“The main takeaway from how it’s going to affect Huntingdon County is the flat funding for the schools and universities throughout the state. That way we get the kids back to school in the fall and get parents back to work,” said Irvin. “It will also flat fund the human service section of the budget to ensure those truly in need do have the help they need.”

Irvin is optimistic that the temporary budget will prove effective but stressed the need for businesses to open before an economic recovery can begin.

“It’s about 75% of last year’s budget and will give us time...The sooner we get people back to work and kids to school the faster we can get the economy to recover. We still need better projections and outlooks to see if we will recover fast or slow but we need to continue to get businesses to open after this extreme shutdown by the governor,” he said.

The bill now advances to the Senate for further consideration.

Nathan can be reached at nwoods@huntingdondailynews.com.

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