Good news won’t dent Pa. deficit

CENTER CITY – At his last Philadelphia press conference as an elected official yesterday, outgoing Gov. Ed Rendell boasted that higher-than-expected December revenue collections could bring a fiscal-year surplus rather than the deficit forecasted last month.

The great news came with a warning, though: Being above fiscal-year projections doesn’t solve a massive looming deficit, Rendell said. He cited the anticipated loss of $2.6 billion in stimulus funds, the Legislature’s unwillingness to create the reserve fund he requested in recent budget addresses and rising pension, corrections and Medicaid costs.

“Does [incoming Gov. Thomas] Corbett have to make cuts? Of course he does. I would too,” he said. “But those cuts have to be balanced.”

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