Dear Editor:

As a freshman student at Clarion University of Pennsylvania, Governor Corbett's proposed budget sends chills down my spine at the thought of it.

A proposed 20 percent cut on top of the 20 percent cut as part of last year's budget to Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) schools sends the wrong message to young adults across the state, that message being that education is not a priority of this administration in Harrisburg.

Tom Corbett rode into Harrisburg on his golden chariot preaching reform along with a 'no new taxes' tagline. Such a move he's sticking with, but not because he wants to simply live up to a campaign promise, rather, because he's interested in doing political favors for his buddies in the Marcellus Shale industry.

Yes, this is the same Tom Corbett who increased spending on prisons last year while making cuts to education. It begins to beg the question, where are his priorities?

Maybe, just maybe, the Governor is smarter than we think and has a plan. His increase in prison spending last year could be indicative of the direction he wants Pennsylvania to go in. That trend being that less people will go to college because it's less affordable; more people will stick around, get involved with the wrong crew, commit some crimes and go off to jail.

Personally, I'd like to see more kids go off to college, get degrees, get good paying jobs and put that money back into the Pennsylvania economy rather than taking the route that Tom Corbett would like to see and have our prisons fill up while our state universities crumble due to a lack of funding.

Corbett supporters fail to recognize that education these days is pricier than ever and that the long term effects of these cuts could be devastating to Pennsylvania.

While the Marcellus Shale industry makes money hand over fist in Pennsylvania, education will be put on the back burner, put off to the side for now and someday, when people realize the true effects of these cuts, it may be just too late.

I encourage members of both the Pennsylvania House and Senate from on both sides of the aisle to take a stand and not allow themselves to be puppets of the governor. If the governor has his way people will once again lose faith in the political process, one that caters to those whose money hangs in front of the eyes of politicians, not one which looks at the people whom it is affecting and the future of this commonwealth.

Sincerely,

John Owens

a.k.a. "Johnny O"

Nesquehoning,

j.owens@eagle.clarion.edu [1]