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Wolf, legislative Republican leaders have plenty to chew over as budget heads into homestretch

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HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania — Pennsylvania measures its state budget deficit in the billions, has a Democratic governor and Republican Legislature with much different policy ideas and faces ballooning public sector pension payments.

Those are some of the reasons why this is shaping up to be a tough budget season for state government.

Gov. Tom Wolf wants billions of dollars in income and sales taxes to fill the budget hole, pump more money into education and job training and cut property taxes.

Republicans in the House have been pushing their own property tax legislation, and in February passed a proposal to license the sale of wine and liquor by privately owned stores.

Senate GOP leaders say making changes to the massive school and government pension systems are their biggest priority.

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