HARRISBURG, Pa. (ErieNewsNow) - Pennsylvania is without a budget, now ten days into the 2023-24 fiscal year. There are no signs of a final budget on the horizon and no signs of legislative activity this week in Harrisburg. 

Pennsylvania’s budget is pivotal for public school funding, state programs, non-profits and many others. 

“This is where the rubber meets the road, this is what is going to be directly affecting Pennsylvanians next week, next month, next year,” said Gannon University Professor Dr. Jeffrey Bloodworth. 

Bloodworth says a late budget, sometimes even weeks after the deadline, is not entirely uncommon. 

“It's not like state parks are going to be padlocked or schools are going to cease to function. The basic functions of state government are going to continue,” said Bloodworth. 

Although it’s business as usual for the time being, Bloodworth says finding agreement is important for leaders of the House, the Senate and Governor Shapiro. 

“This is an important test- are the grownups going to be able to hammer out a compromise,” said Bloodworth. 

The Republican-controlled Senate passed a budget- supported by Shapiro- on the June 30 deadline which included $100 million for a private school voucher program. The program is widely unpopular among Democrats who control the House. 

“The Governor wants this voucher program and he can't bring his party along with him,” said Bloodworth. 

Shapiro announced last week he would remove the program to gain support from the House and prevent further impasse. But impasse seems inevitable. Senate Republicans, who feel betrayed, ultimately need to sign off on the budget and a series of code bills to determine how the dollars are spent. As of now, they’re not scheduled to return to Harrisburg until mid-September. 

Despite the impasse, Bloodworth says it’s fairly healthy state politics. 

“This is what healthy partisanship looks like. This is a real substantive policy debate that actually matters,” said Bloodworth. "This isn't about CRT or some other kind of cultural issue that everybody's arguing about that really only matters on social media. This is a serious grown-up issue," he added. 

Bloodworth believes Shapiro’s support for the program, which the governor maintained during a press conference last week, is a positive sign and one that appeals to moderates. 

“Shapiro- he's taking on his own party and their orthodoxy- that's healthy. We want Republican leaders to take on the party orthodoxy. We want Democratic leaders to take on their party's orthodoxies. States are the laboratories of democracy. In that way, I think we can be heartened,” said Bloodworth.