- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 4, 2014

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - The prepared remarks as delivered by Gov. Tom Corbett on Tuesday, outlining plans for Pennsylvania’s 2014-2015 state budget.


Speaker Smith, President Pro Tempore Scarnati, Republican Leaders Pileggi and Turzai, Democrat Leaders Costa and Dermody, Lieutenant Governor Cawley, members of the General Assembly, the best First Lady in the country Susan Corbett, members of my cabinet, friends and fellow citizens:

Thank you all very much.

This is the fourth time I have come here to present a budget to the general assembly, and it’s always a privilege. Today, I’ve brought along some special guests.

They represent the men and women of this state who wear the uniform of our country, and the many who have served in theaters of war. This past year, the 104th Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, a unit of the Pennsylvania National Guard, completed a deployment in Afghanistan. Our guests are among the brave and highly skilled Apache helicopter pilots who carried out that mission. We are proud to have the Apaches based in Pennsylvania.

Recently though, the Army announced a plan to take many of these helicopters with their pilots out of Pennsylvania.

Along with Adjutant General Wesley Craig, I am going to fight to keep them here.

As a former member of the 28th AVBN, Pennsylvania National Guard, the pride I have for our pilots runs deep. Please welcome Major Randy Lutz and Chief Warrant Officer Joshua Soper.

We’ve done a lot of good work, you and I, in building a stronger Pennsylvania.

I thank each member here for serving this commonwealth with energy and conviction. I’ve tried to do the same, because our challenges have required nothing less.

Not so long ago, Pennsylvania was in pretty serious trouble, and there was no easy way out. We took some of the worst hits of the great recession.

Things were especially tough in many of our rural counties, places where economic stagnation had already seemed like a fact of life.

All of this was our starting point, and we have a lot to show for three years of hard choices and honest effort.

Of course, the good things we have seen since then are hardly the doing of government alone. So, right up front, let’s give credit for Pennsylvania’s comeback where it belongs, to the people of Pennsylvania.

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