HARRISBURG, July 1, 2013 – State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams (D-Philadelphia/Delaware), Democratic whip, offered his reaction to enactment of Pennsylvania’s 2013-’14 budget:
“I’m happy we were able to secure more money for public education. The governor had his priorities. Other people had their priorities – liquor privatization, pensions. Making sure the Philadelphia public school system and other public school systems have the money to open in the fall with full staffing was my priority. For our families across the commonwealth, it was the priority.
“This budget is part of a process to get to where we need to be in certain areas. We sorted through and negotiated a host of solutions to get to where we need to be. My vote was in making sure we had the opportunity to get the educational dollars we needed, especially for Philadelphia.
“We had people in Philadelphia fasting and praying that lawmakers would do the right thing by our children and schools. It’s my hope that their efforts will not be in vain. Their campaign raised awareness and provided a larger perspective for many people of what you have to do to fully, and successfully, educate a child. Yes, we need solid building leadership and classroom leadership, but we also need the presence of those aides who populate the lunchrooms and the halls; who help to provide safer environments.
“My goal was to help secure the funds needed to create and maintain learning environments with the resources needed for academic rigor and safety. Both are critical for academic success.”