Several local human services providers made a strong case at a public hearing last week against planned cuts in funding due to the state's budget constraints.
At the heart of their disdain is Gov. Tom Corbett's $27.1 billion budget plan that cuts various spending items in an effort to get Pennsylvania back on sound fiscal footing.
While the Senate's budget proposal of $27.7 billion restores some of the funding, it doesn't restore enough of it, the human services providers say.
It's hard to argue with anything that was said at the hearing.
In fact, we have recommended several times in this space that should budget discussions show the state is in a better budget position than it was when Gov. Corbett proposed his plan, human services funding should be the first area to benefit.
But let's keep in mind several things. The hearing was a House Democratic Policy Committee, so it's meant to be critical of the Corbett budget.
It's also not meant to include honest admissions of how we got to this point.
We got to this dire budgetary situation through a 36-percent increase in state General Fund spending over the eight years of the Rendell administration.
That's an unsustainable, wasteful spending trend that somebody had to stop.
Just once, we'd like to see an honest wagging of the finger in the correct direction rather than a settling for the easy, political way out blaming the person cleaning up the mess so that future funding to human services needs is not in as much jeopardy.
Our most fervent hope would be that honest, open discussion regarding the budget in the next few weeks would yield opportunities to further restore human services funding cuts.
But while that is happening, let's keep in mind how this budget quandary came to be.