About IFO

The Independent Fiscal Office was created by Act 120 of 2010, and Act 100 of 2016 transferred its authorizing statute to Article VI-B of the Administrative Code. The office Mission Statement is as follows:

The Independent Fiscal Office (IFO) provides revenue projections for use in the state budget process along with impartial and timely analysis of fiscal, economic and budgetary issues to assist Commonwealth residents and the General Assembly in their evaluation of policy decisions. In that capacity, the IFO does not support or oppose any policy it analyzes, and will disclose the methodologies, data sources and assumptions used in published reports and estimates. The IFO will seek to establish collaborative relationships with the General Assembly, executive agencies and various non-governmental organizations that have an interest in the policy making process.


Matthew Knittel
Formerly employed as a financial economist by the US Department of Treasury and an economist by the Michigan Department of Treasury. Mr. Knittel holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in Economics from Michigan State University and a bachelor's degree in Economics from Hope College in Holland, Michigan. Mr. Knittel has taught courses at Johns Hopkins, Temple and Penn State Universities and published several articles in the National Tax Journal, the NBER and US Treasury's Office of Tax Analysis working paper series.
Brenda Warburton
Deputy Director
Prior to joining the IFO, Ms. Warburton held several positions related to state budgeting and tax policy and administration in the commonwealth, including executive deputy secretary for the Office of the Budget, research director for the Department of Revenue, and unemployment compensation tax services director for the Department of Labor and Industry. Ms. Warburton holds a M.P.A. in Environmental Policy and Natural Resource Management from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University and a B.A. in International Studies from American University.
Stacey Knavel
Principal Revenue Analyst
Formerly employed as a manager in the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue's Bureau of Research, where she coordinated the revenue forecasting process for both the General Fund and the Motor License Fund. Ms. Knavel also conducted policy analysis related to a wide variety of tax types and participated in shaping many aspects of the Department's tax policy. Ms. Knavel holds a B.S. in Finance from Pennsylvania State University.
Karen Maynard
Budget Analyst III
Primary responsibilities at the IFO include leading various performance-based budgeting projects, coordinating the forecasting of various department expenditures and working on special projects pertaining to education, demographics, minimum wage and other subjects as needed. Ms. Maynard also previously forecasted personal income tax revenues. Prior to working at the IFO, she was formerly employed as an Economist at the Joint State Government Commission where she provided statistical and economic data analysis on a very broad range of subjects including Earned Income Tax Credits, K-12 and post secondary education, health care and state pension benefits. Ms. Maynard holds a M.A. in Economics from Penn State University and two bachelor's degrees, in Economics and Mathematics, and a minor in Business Administration from Mansfield University of Pennsylvania.
Joseph Shockey
Revenue Analyst II
Prior to joining the IFO, Mr. Shockey was employed as an analyst by several commonwealth agencies including the Office of the Budget, Department of Revenue's Bureau of Research and Pennsylvania Department of Transportation's Bureau of Fiscal Management. Mr. Shockey's experience includes analysis of state budgets, policy and legislation, and revenue and cash flow. Mr. Shockey holds a B.S. in Finance from Grove City College in Grove City, Pennsylvania.
Mathieu Taylor
Fiscal Analyst II
Prior to joining the IFO, Mr. Taylor was employed at the Illinois Governor's Office of Management and Budget serving as an analyst and later Deputy Director. Duties there included the development and management of budgets for agencies including the Departments of Transportation, Commerce and Economic Opportunity, and Natural Resources. He was also responsible for fiscal oversight of the State Employees' Group Health Insurance program for the Governor's Budget Office, as well as other core government services. Mr. Taylor holds a B.S. in Economics from Illinois College and a Master's in Public Administration from the University of Illinois Springfield. His duties at the IFO are focused on state and local pension analysis and reform.
Lesley McLaughlin
Revenue Analyst II
Primary responsibilities at the IFO include leading the Department of Human Services performance-based budgeting reports, forecasting sales and use tax revenues, working on special projects regarding human services and demographics, and assisting in the coordination of department expenditures forecasts. Ms. McLaughlin holds an M.P.A. with a concentration in Healthcare Policy from Pennsylvania State University and a B.A. in Economics and Public Policy from Gettysburg College.
Jesse Bushman
Revenue Analyst II
Primary responsibilities at the IFO include forecasting revenues from the gross receipts and inheritance taxes and leading various performance-based budgeting reports, including for the Departments of Criminal Justice, Environmental Protection and Agriculture. Mr. Bushman also leads the office’s projects related to natural gas, energy, and school district property taxes. He holds a B.S. in Economics with a minor in Business Administration from Shippensburg University.
Rachel Flaugh
Revenue Analyst
Holds a B.S. from Duquesne University in Economics with a concentration in International Business. Her primary responsibilities at the IFO include forecasting revenues from minor and repealed taxes, insurance premiums and financial institutions.
Michaela Miller
Revenue Analyst
Primary responsibilities at the IFO include forecasting revenues from personal income taxes along with other projects related to tax credit reviews, performance-based budgeting and demographics. Ms. Miller holds a B.S. in Public Policy with a minor in Applied Economics from Penn State University. Prior to joining the IFO, she was a research assistant at the Pennsylvania State Data Center.
Robyn Toth
Revenue Analyst
Prior to joining the IFO, Ms. Toth held management and analyst positions in the private sector. Primary responsibilities at the IFO include forecasting revenues for various tax sources and working on projects relating to tax credit reviews and performance-based budgeting.
Kara Hale
Office Manager
Holds a B.S. from Penn State University in Applied Behavioral Science. Prior to joining the IFO, Ms. Hale was employed with the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board as an Administrative Assistant. Ms. Hale serves as the Office Manager.