Pennsylvania budget

House Republican Leader Dave Reed speaks to reporters after Wolf's announcement that he'll let the unbalanced budget pass.
Katie Meyer / WITF

(Harrisburg) -- Governor Tom Wolf has allowed an incomplete state budget to become law without his signature after a marathon negotiating session yielded no agreements between his administration and GOP leaders.

Talks broke down over a few hundred million dollars of revenue out of the $32 billion spending plan.

Nearly $30 billion of the 2017-18 package is already accounted for. It's the remaining $2 billion or so that's causing lawmakers a headache.

Harrisburg capitol building with an American flag in the foreground.
Matt Rourke / AP Photo

You can tell it’s budget week in Pennsylvania because, on any given day, you’ll find the Capitol packed with lobbyists and advocates from around the commonwealth, pushing for a piece of the pie.

They mill around the rotunda, waiting for news from lawmakers deliberating in chambers upstairs.

This year, there’s been precious little information getting out.

Harrisburg capitol building.
Matt Rourke / AP Photo

State budgets have two basic parts: one outlines how much government will spend on its programs and expenses, and the other details where lawmakers are getting the money to pay for it.

Last year, the GOP-controlled legislature compromised on a $31.5 billion spending plan, and then took two more weeks to come up with a revenue framework to fit it.

Democratic Governor Tom Wolf let it become law without his signature, declaring at the time that “our budget is balanced this year, and we have greatly reduced the commonwealth’s structural budget deficit.”

Harrisburg Capitol building.
Matt Rourke / AP Photo

State lawmakers have made no secret of the fact that next fiscal year’s state budget, which is due Friday, will be a hard one to enact.

The commonwealth’s contending with a roughly $3 billion structural deficit, and its reserves are tapped out. It’s also facing skyrocketing pension and human services costs, and for the last year, it’s been relying on a line of credit from the Pennsylvania Treasury to pay off immediate expenses.

So how did we get here?

Many of these fiscal issues can be traced back to the 2008 housing market crash.