Governor of Pennsylvania
|Office website:||Official Link|
|2012-2013 FY Budget:||$6,429,000|
|Term limits:||Two consecutive terms|
|Length of term:||4 years|
|Authority:||Pennsylvania Constitution, Article IV, Section 2|
|Assumed office:||January 20, 2015|
|Next election:||November 6, 2018|
|Last election:||November 4, 2014|
|Other Pennsylvania Executive Offices|
|Governor • Lieutenant Governor • Secretary of State • Attorney General • Treasurer • Auditor • Superintendent of Education • Agriculture Commissioner • Insurance Commissioner • Natural Resources Commissioner • Labor Commissioner • Public Service Commission|
- 1 Current officer
- 2 Authority
- 3 Qualifications
- 4 Vacancies
- 5 Duties
- 6 Elections
- 7 Divisions
- 8 State budget
- 9 Compensation
- 10 Historical officeholders
- 11 History
- 12 Recent news
- 13 Contact information
- 14 See also
- 15 External links
- 16 References
The 47th and current governor is Tom Wolf, a Democrat elected in 2014. Wolf began his first term in office on January 20, 2015, succeeding Republican Tom Corbett, whom Wolf unseated in the 2014 general election.
Under Article IV, Section 2:
The supreme executive power shall be vested in the Governor...
|2015 • 2014 • 2013 • 2012 • 2011 • 2010|
|Current Lt. Governors|
|Lt. Governor Elections|
|2015 • 2014 • 2013 • 2012 • 2011 • 2010|
A candidate for the governor must be:
- a citizen of the United States
- at least 30 years old
- a resident of Pennsylvania for at least seven years
Additionally, the governor may not hold Congressional office, any other office under the Commonwealth, or any federal office. The exception is that the governor may be a reserve member of the National Guard.
- See also: How gubernatorial vacancies are filled
Details of vacancy appointments are addressed under Article IV, Section 13 and 14.
If the office of Governor becomes vacant through death, resignation, or conviction on impeachment, the Lieutenant Governor becomes Governor for the remainder of the term; if the office is only temporarily vacant due to disability of the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor only acts out the duties of Governor.
Should both offices be vacant, the president pro tempore of the Senate becomes Governor. The position of Lieutenant Governor was created in the 1874 state constitution; prior to then, the Speaker of the Senate would act as governor in cases of vacancy.
The Governor is the commander-in-chief of the state's military forces (§ 7). The governor has a duty to enforce state laws (§ 2), the power to approve or veto bills passed by the Pennsylvania Legislature subject to a two-thirds override (§ 15), and to convene the legislature for extraordinary session (§ 12).
The governor may grant pardons, reprieves, and commutations except in cases of impeachment, but only when recommended by the Board of Pardons (§ 9). The Board of Pardons consists of the Lieutenant Governor, the Attorney General, and three gubernatorial appointees, each of whom must be confirmed by a two-third vote of the Senate and who serves a six year term.
Other duties and privileges of the office include:
- Appointing the Secretary of Education and all other offices not otherwise provided for, subject to the advice and two-third consent of the Senate (§ 8)
- Requiring written information from the head of any executive department on any aspect of that department's work (§ 10)
- Periodically addressing the General Assembly on the state of the state and making recommendation for legislation (§ 11)
- Adjourning the legislature when the body cannot agree to do so itself, for a period not to exceed four months (§ 12)
- Convening the Senate by special proclamation for the purposes of transacting executive business (§ 13)
- Vetoing appropriation bills, subject to legislative override (§ 16)
- Signing and sealing, with "The Great Seal of the State of Pennsylvania," all commissions granted by the state of Pennsylvania (§ 19)
Pennsylvania elects governors in the midterm elections, that is, even years that are not presidential election years. For Pennsylvania, 2018, 2022, 2026, 2030 and 2034 are all gubernatorial election years. Legally, the gubernatorial inauguration is always set for the third Tuesday in the January following an election.
In the event of a tie, a joint session of the legislature shall cast ballots to choose the governor from the two top vote getters.
If an election's outcome is contest, the members of both chambers of the legislature shall select members of the special Commission to resolve the contest.
- See also: States with gubernatorial term limits
Pennsylvania governors are restricted to two consecutive terms in office, after which they must wait one term before being eligible to run again.
|Except for the Governor who may be in office when this amendment is adopted, he shall be eligible to succeed himself for one additional term.|
|Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania, 2014|
|Democratic||Tom Wolf/Mike Stack||54.9%||1,920,355|
|Republican||Tom Corbett/Jim Cawley Incumbent||45.1%||1,575,511|
|Election Results via Pennsylvania Department of State.|
To view the electoral history dating back to 2002 for the office of Governor/Lt. Governor of Pennsylvania, Click [show] to expand the section.
Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for information that describes the divisions (if any exist) of a state executive office. That information for the Governor of Pennsylvania has not yet been added. After extensive research we were unable to identify any relevant information on state official websites. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.
Role in state budget
- See also: Pennsylvania state budget and finances
- Budget instruction guidelines are sent to state agencies in August of the year preceding the start of the new fiscal year.
- State agencies submit their requests to the governor in October.
- Agency hearings are held in December and January. Public hearings are held in February and March.
- The governor submits his or her proposed budget to the state legislature in February.
- The legislature typically adopts a budget in May or June. A simple majority is required to pass a budget. The fiscal year begins July 1.
The governor is legally required to submit a balanced budget proposal. While the legislature is not legally required to pass a balanced budget, the Governor is legally required to sign a balanced budget.
Governor's office budget
The budget for the Governor's office in Fiscal Year 2012-2013 was $6,429,000.
The governor's salary is set by statute and subject to cost-of-living adjustments, also known as COLAs, pursuant to Section 3(e) of the Public Official Compensation Law (amended in 1995). This law mandates that Pennsylvania executives' salaries "shall be increased by applying the percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for the Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland area for the most recent 12-month period for which figures have been officially reported by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) immediately prior to the date adjustment is due to take effect."
Under this law, the appropriate salaries were last increased by 1.6 percent, effective January 1, 2015.
In 2013, the governor's salary was $187,256, according to the Council of State Governments. However, Gov. Corbett refused several cost-of-living adjustments during his tenure, returning the increases to the state, making his actual pay closer to $175,000.
In 2010, the governor was paid $174,914 a year, the 6th highest gubernatorial salary in America.
Counting non-consecutive terms, there have been 49 governors of Pennsylvania since 1799. (Otherwise there have been 47). Of the 49 officeholders, 26 were Republican, 11 were Democratic, 7 were Democratic-Republicans, 1 was a Federalist, 1 was Anti-Masonic, 1 was a Jacksonian Democrat, 1 was a Whig and 1 was a Whig/Republican.
|List of Former Officeholders from 1799-Present|
|1||Thomas Mifflin||1788 - 1799||Federalist|
|2||Thomas McKean||1799 - 1808||Democratic-Republican|
|3||Simon Snyder||1808 - 1817||Democratic-Republican|
|4||William Findlay||1817 - 1820||Democratic-Republican|
|5||Joseph Hiester||1820 - 1823||Democratic-Republican|
|6||John Andrew Shulze||1823 - 1829||Democratic-Republican|
|7||George Wolf||1829 - 1835||Democratic-Republican|
|8||Joseph Ritner||1835 - 1839||Anti-Masonic|
|9||David Rittenhouse Porter||1839 - 1845||Democratic-Republican|
|10||Francis Rawn Shunk||1845 - 1848||Jacksonian Democrat|
|11||William Freame Johnston||1848 - 1852||Whig|
|12||William Bigler||1852 - 1855||Democratic|
|13||James Pollock||1855 - 1858||Whig/Republican|
|14||William Fisher Packer||1858 - 1861||Democratic|
|15||Andrew Gregg Curtin||1861 - 1867||Republican|
|16||John White Geary||1867 - 1873||Republican|
|17||John Frederick Hartranft||1873 - 1879||Republican|
|18||Henry Martyn Hoyt||1879 - 1883||Republican|
|19||Robert Emory Pattison||1883 - 1887||Democratic|
|20||James Addams Beaver||1887 - 1891||Republican|
|21||Robert Emory Pattison||1891 – 1895||Democratic|
|22||Daniel Hartman Hastings||1895 - 1899||Republican|
|23||William Alexis Stone||1899 - 1903||Republican|
|24||Samuel Whitaker Pennypacker||1903 - 1907||Republican|
|25||Edwin Sydney Stuart||1907 - 1911||Republican|
|26||John Kinley Tener||1911 - 1915||Republican|
|27||Martin Grove Brumbaugh||1915 - 1919||Republican|
|28||William Cameron Sproul||1919 - 1923||Republican|
|29||Gifford Pinchot||1923 - 1927||Republican|
|30||John Stuchell Fisher||1927 - 1931||Republican|
|31||Gifford Pinchot||1931 – 1935||Republican|
|32||George Howard Earle||1935 - 1939||Democratic|
|33||Arthur Horace James||1939 - 1943||Republican|
|34||Edward Martin||1943 - 1947||Republican|
|35||John Cromwell Bell||1947 - 1947||Republican|
|36||James Henderson Duff||1947 - 1951||Republican|
|37||John Sydney Fine||1951 - 1955||Republican|
|38||George Michael Leader||1955 - 1959||Democratic|
|39||David Leo Lawrence||1959 - 1963||Democratic|
|40||William W. Scranton||1963 - 1967||Republican|
|41||Raymond Philip Shafer||1967 - 1971||Republican|
|42||Milton Jerrold Shapp||1971 - 1979||Democratic|
|43||Dick Thornburgh||1979 - 1987||Republican|
|44||Robert P. Casey||1987 - 1995||Democratic|
|45||Tom Ridge||1995 - 2001||Republican|
|46||Mark Schweiker||2001 - 2003||Republican|
|47||Edward G. Rendell||2003 - 2011||Democratic|
|48||Tom Corbett||2011 – 2015||Republican|
|49||[[Tom Wolf]||2015 – present||Democratic|
Partisan balance 1992-2013
From 1992-2013, in Pennsylvania there were Democratic governors in office for 11 years while there were Republican governors in office for 11 years, including the last three. Pennsylvania was under Republican trifectas for the last three years of the study period.
Across the country, there were 493 years of Democratic governors (44.82%) and 586 years of Republican governors (53.27%) from 1992-2013.
Over the course of the 22-year study, state governments became increasingly more partisan. At the outset of the study period (1992), 18 of the 49 states with partisan legislatures had single-party trifectas and 31 states had divided governments. In 2013, only 13 states had divided governments, while single-party trifectas held sway in 36 states, the most in the 22 years studied.
SQLI and partisanship
The chart below depicts the partisanship of Pennsylvania state government and the state's SQLI ranking for the years studied. For the SQLI, the states were ranked from 1-50, with 1 being the best and 50 the worst. Pennsylvania had a Democratic trifecta in 1993, but switched two years later to a Republican trifecta that lasted from 1995-2002. The state had a divided government for many years until a Republican trifecta returned in 2011. Pennsylvania's worst SQLI ranking, finishing 30th, occurred in 1994 during a divided government and in 2012 during a Republican trifecta. The state's best ranking, finishing 19th, occurred from 1999-2000 during a Republican trifecta and again in 2004 during a divided government.
- SQLI average with Democratic trifecta: 25.00
- SQLI average with Republican trifecta: 23.70
- SQLI average with divided government: 25.20
This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the terms "Pennsylvania Governor."
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Office of the Governor
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17120
Portions of this article were adapted from Wikipedia.
- The Morning Call, "Democrat Tom Wolf sworn in as Pennsylvania's 47th governor," January 20, 2015
- CBS Philly, "Tom Wolf Sworn In As Newest Governor of Pennsylvania," January 20, 2015
- National Conference of State Legislatures, "State Experiences with Annual and Biennial Budgeting," updated April 2011
- National Association of State Budget Officers, "Budget Processes in the States, Summer 2008," accessed February 21, 2014
- Pennsylvania Budget Office, "2012-13 Enacted Budget - Act 9A," accessed April 10, 2013
- Pennsylvania Legislature, "Senate Bill: Act 51 of 1995," accessed February 20, 2015
- The Pennsylvania Bulletin, "NOTICES: Statutory Cost of Living Increases for Salaries of State Officials and the Heads of Departments, Boards and Commissions," December 27, 2014
- Council of State Governments, "SELECTED STATE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS: ANNUAL SALARIES," accessed December 8, 2014
- Council of State Governments, "CSG Releases 2013 Governor Salaries," June 25, 2013
- National Governors Association, " Former governors of Pennsylvania," Accessed June 18, 2013
State of Pennsylvania
|State executive offices||
Governor | Lieutenant Governor | Attorney General | Secretary of State | Treasurer | Auditor General | Secretary of Education | Commissioner of Insurance | Secretary of Agriculture | Secretary of Conservation and Natural Resources | Secretary of Labor & Industry | Chairman of Public Utilities |