The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


February 14, 2013

Readers' Forum 2-14 | Honest budgeting needed from Harrisburg

— Regarding the Feb. 7 article “Education chief defends Corbett’s budget”: The Corbett administration has consistently mischaracterized the damage it has done to education funding and quality in Pennsylvania.

The governor spent two years slashing long-term school funding by $1 billion, leading to the loss of tens of thousands of education jobs, increase in class sizes, loss of programs and huge increases in local property taxes, then tried to blame the previous governor and the federal government.

Now, he wants to claim credit for increasing education funding in his new budget. The actual increases for our local schools in his new plan average only about 1 percent during the last year. That doesn’t come close to making up for the $1 billion in cuts he has already made.

As for his plan to provide $1 billion in new, one-time school grants by selling the state liquor stores, I wouldn’t count on it. He would have to significantly increase both the number of liquor licenses in Pennsylvania and alcohol consumption to reach that number. Shots for tots – is that the education funding approach we want in Pennsylvania?

Gov. Tom Corbett defended the massive cuts of his previous two education budgets by blaming the federal government’s one-time stimulus package, which he called a gimmick. Now, he’s hanging his own education budget on ... yep, a one-time gimmick. To heck with performance-based budgeting. How about some honest budgeting?

Gary Haluska

State Representative, Cambria County


Woman in gun case: Truth has come out

“The truth will set you free,” John 8:32.

This is in response to The Tribune-Democrat’s story on Feb. 8, “Judge fines woman who waved gun at kids.”

There was never a “rattling” at any door, as the story reported. There were four loud “bangs” on my storm door a half-hour after my lights were out. The grandmother with them told the kids no, but they got too close to the house and set off security lights.

I responded to the door from the second floor – with no gun – and saw people running up the street.

They came back, got their candy, and also got a word or two telling them what could have happened.

Believe it or not, the grandmother approached me and said how sorry she was.

The truth has set me free from this horrible experience.

I am the real victim.

Mary Quinn


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