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Perry and Members of PA Congressional Delegation Call on Gov. Wolf to Release Federal Education Dollars

Washington, August 6, 2020

Today, members of the Pennsylvania Republican Congressional Delegation, including Congressman Scott Perry, Congressman Fred Keller, Congressman Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, Congressman Mike Kelly, Congressman Lloyd Smucker, Congressman John Joyce, Congressman Dan Meuser, and Congressman Guy Reschenthaler released the following statement in light of reports that Gov. Tom Wolf has not yet spent $73 million of the $104 million Pennsylvania received through the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund created by the federal CARES Act:

“With Pennsylvanians preparing for in-person and hybrid learning during the upcoming school year, we are deeply concerned that Gov. Tom Wolf has failed to allocate $73 million of federal relief funds that Congress specifically intended to help students and educators. Congress acted fast to pass the CARES Act so that emergency relief funds would be quickly allocated to states and driven out to Americans in need. Gov. Wolf's failure to allocate these dollars directly threatens the educational opportunities for millions of Pennsylvania students and adds uncertainty to an already challenging time for students, parents, educators, and administrators. This news is particularly disturbing in light of the Governor’s calls for Congress to spend trillions in additional taxpayer dollars. It is time for Gov. Wolf to do his job and immediately release these already appropriated federal funds to ensure a safe learning environment for our students and educators.”

Background:

• Congress provided approximately $3 billion of the $30.75 billion allotted to the Education Stabilization Fund through the CARES Act for the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEERF).

• Pennsylvania received $104,418,240 from the GEERF to, per its grant application, “increase connectivity for all learners, including English learners, students with disabilities, students in deep poverty, students experiencing homelessness, and students in foster care,” among other things.

• To date, Gov. Wolf has allocated approximately $3 million to preschool programs and $28 million tocolleges and universities, with $73 million unspent.

• In addition to these unspent funds, Pennsylvania has not allocated $1.3 billion of the $5 billion in CARES Act dollars it received.

• Gov. Wolf has expressed support for House Democrats’ $3 trillion “HEROES Act,” stating that teachers “can’t survive unless they get the help that is in” the bill.

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