A Republican-crafted spending plan for Pennsylvania's state government is one big step closer to becoming law.
Thursday's 120-to-81 vote in the House of Representatives capped more than three hours of debate over the $27.7-billion proposal for the budget year that starts Sunday.
The vote sets the stage for a final Senate vote as early as Friday. Democrats bemoaned the tax cuts for business, spending cuts that will hurt people who need social services and inadequate funding for schools that they will force property-tax increases.
Republicans said critics' wide-ranging complaints underscore the fairness of the plan penned by Governor Tom Corbett and fellow Republicans who control the Legislature. They said it covers the growing costs of pensions and health care, holds education spending level and does not increase state taxes.