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PENNSYLVANIA HOUSE REPUBLICAN LEADER CRITICIZES DEMOCRATIC MAJORITY FOR REFUSING TO CONSIDER LEGISLATION RESTORING PENN VET SCHOOL FUNDING

 HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 16 ~PRNewswire~ -- Pennsylvania House Republican Leader Matthew J. Ryan (R-Delaware County) today criticized the House Democrat majority for refusing to consider legislation which would have restored funding for the University of Pennsylvania's School of Veterinary Medicine and provided funding to counties to cover court costs and district justice operations.
 Ryan urged the House to bring House Bill 2333 to the floor for a vote. The legislation, introduced by House Republican Appropriations Committee Chairman Joseph R. Pitts (R-Chester County), would have restored funding for the veterinary school eliminated from the current state budget. The university operates the state's only veterinary school and more than 40 percent of the school's budget has come from state allocations. All funding for private colleges and universities was eliminated from this year's budget.
 "Everyone, including Gov. Casey on numerous occasions, has acknowledged the tremendous importance of agriculture, the state's No. 1 industry. In our last budget negotiations, a mistake was made in failing to provide funding to Penn and its world-renowned agricultural research facilities and school of veterinary medicine. But let's set aside our mistake without placing blame or playing politics with such a vital economic issue," Pitts said.
 The motion to bring the bill to the floor was defeated 98-100, mainly along party lines.
 Ryan also pushed to override Gov. Robert P. Casey 's vote of state funding for county court costs and district justice reimbursements.
 Before signing the budget for fiscal 1992-93, Casey used his line- item veto to eliminate $35 million in funding, even though a 1987 state Supreme Court ruling requires the state to fully reimburse counties for court costs.
 Ryan said the elimination of funding has left many counties with large budget deficits, forcing them to consider tax increases or staff cuts, which would only lead to a bigger backlog for the state's court system.
 "Every one of you voted to provide this money for court costs. The governor vetoed it. None of us in this room wanted that money removed, but the governor did it. My home county and many other counties are hurting and raising taxes. Now is the time for those who supported this budget to come forward and restore this funding," Ryan said in urging Democrats to support his efforts.
 The motion failed 99-101 along mostly party lines.
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 ~CONTACT: Pennsylvania House Public Information Department, 717-783-3993~


CO: Pennsylvania House of Representatives; University of Pennsylvania
 School of Veterinary Medicine ST: Pennsylvania IN: SU:


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Date:Nov 16, 1992
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