FAQ: State Government

FAQ: State Government

What is a Commonwealth?

A Commonwealth refers to the “weal” or well-being of the public. It is of English origin and most likely came from the colony of William Penn, which was originally known as the Quaker Commonwealth. This region was to later become Pennsylvania. Interestingly, Pennsylvania was referred to as a Commonwealth and as State in its first Constitution in 1776. State constitutions since then have used these two words to mean the same place. Legally, there have been no major differences between the two terms. There are three other Commonwealths in the United States: Virginia, Kentucky, and Massachusetts.

What are the branches of Pennsylvania's government?

Pennsylvania state government is made up of the Legislature, the Executive Branch, and the Judicial Branch.

How is State Government financed?

State Government is financed through a system of taxes administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue as outlined in Pennsylvania law. These taxes apply to both individuals and businesses.