May. 02, 2024

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The Barb Wire
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol
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Today is the 73rd National Day of Prayer
The National Day of Prayer is an annual day of observance designated by the United States Congress and held on the first Thursday of May, when people are asked "to turn to God in prayer and meditation." This year's theme is "Lift up the Word, Light up the World." The president is required by law to sign a proclamation each year, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day.

FPR Update
Today’s Carlisle Sentinel has several articles on Food Processing Residuals. You can read my comments here:

State legislation, Cumberland County coalition could address FPR use

A GROWING CONCERN: Residents weigh benefits, concerns of FPR use

Session Update
This week bills were discussed, or votes were taken on the following legislation.

Click the links for more information:
Wednesday, May 1, 2024
House Bill 416: Title 18/prohibiting remote stalking
House Bill 1166: Safer Sealant Act/polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in asphalt sealants
House Bill 1172: Title 1/allowing for the expanded use of alkaline hydrolysis
House Bill 1608: Human Services Code/Medicaid coverage for Doulas
House Bill 1615: Title 66/appliance energy efficiency standards
House Bill 1626: Title 51/posting of veteran benefits/services
House Bill 1803: Responsible Outdoor Lighting Control Act/limiting light pollution
House Bill 2097: Human Services Code/providing for coverage for blood pressure monitors
House Bill 2150: Liquor Code/limited extended hours for craft breweries
House Bill 2200: Title 63/FBI-approved language to implement licensure compacts
House Bill 2202: PA Minority Business Development Authority Act/establishing the Minority Business Development Program
House Bill 2206: Title 18/electronic records of firearm sales

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

House Bill 478: Title 75/child safety restraints in all truck classifications
House Bill 847: PA Election Code/change deadline for request of mail-in or absentee ballot
House Bill 997: Whole Milk in PA Schools Act/authorizing the provision or sale of PA milk in PA schools
House Bill 1419: Title 15/Consistency In Domestic And Foreign Filing
House Bill 1632: Workers' Compensation Act/providing for compensation for post-traumatic stress injury
House Bill 2084: Wholesale Prescription Drug Distributors License Act/prescription drug virtual manufacturing license
House Bill 2096: Insurance Company Law/providing for surplus lines fees & further providing for monthly reports
House Bill 2104: PA Human Relations Act/ensure employers have written policies and procedures for preventing harassment, discrimination, and retaliation against employees, & creates the Human Relations Training Fund
House Bill 2139: Title 18/providing for the offense of use of live pigeons for target
House Bill 2174: Title 64/establishing the Mixed-Use Revitalization Fund
House Bill 2182: Title 75/providing for visual signals on authorized vehicles
House Bill 2208: Medical Marijuana Act/improving lab oversight
House Bill 2225: Rural PA Revitalization Act/Rural Population Revitalization Commission
House Bill 2231: Title 44/electronic recording of certain custodial interrogations
House Bill 2235: Meat Packing & Food Processing Protection Act/providing for regulation of the meat packing and food processing industry by creating facility health and safety committees in the workplace
Senate Bill 709: Title 34/increased penalty for killing or unlawfully taking bald or golden eagles
Senate Bill 721: Establishes the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) State Advisory Board
Senate Bill 915: Title 75/lost, stolen, damaged or illegible registration plate
Senate Bill 945: Title 16/making repeals
Senate Bill 1018: Title 2/provide protection for child victims and witnesses.

Monday, April 29, 2024
House Bill 1486: Human Services Code/providing for copayments for subsidized childcare
House Bill 2137: Title 35/establishing the maternal & newborn supply kit program
House Bill 2227: Title 18/affirmative defense for survivors of human trafficking

Welcome to the Capitol!
On Wednesday, April 24, I welcomed the 9-12th grade students from Carlisle Christian Academy to the Capitol.

U.S Army War College Celebrates Jim Thorpe Sports Days
I was honored to be a part of the annual Jim Thorpe Sports Days Opening Ceremonies at Indian Field last Thursday. They even had the Olympic torch brought in for the festivities!

50 Year Milestone
On Saturday, I stopped by The Kitchen Shoppe’s 50th anniversary celebration in Middlesex Township to present owner Sue Hoff with a certificate of achievement. It was great to see so many people come out to help her celebrate this achievement!

House Democrats Continue to Fail on Election Reform
State House majority Democrats again failed to deliver on meaningful election reforms this week. During session Wednesday, the House passed a standalone bill extending pre-canvassing time, which is the time during which county election offices can prepare absentee and mail-in ballots to be tallied.

The majority party, however, continued to turn its back on other popular, meaningful and comprehensive election reform measures that have broad, bipartisan support across the state.

Polling in April showed requiring identification each time a person votes is not only widely supported, but is broadly believed to be a commonsense election reform that will increase confidence in the conduct of Pennsylvania’s elections. Signature verification, according to recent polling, is one of the most universally supported election reforms and mirrors in-person election day practices.

A discharge petition that would force consideration of a voter ID proposal in the House has gained support from half of the chamber’s membership. It’s time to take this important step to help restore confidence in our elections.

Defending Your Second Amendment Rights
On Tuesday, I joined dozens of my colleagues and Second Amendment advocates at the annual Right to Keep and Bear Arms Rally at the state Capitol. It is vital we stand together and remain strong in our defense of this right at all times. Taking legal firearms away from law-abiding citizens will NOT solve the violent crime problem plaguing our country; instead, it will render innocent people helpless to defend themselves and their families.

We were joined at the rally by two excellent guest speakers. Antonia Okafor Cover is director of Women’s Outreach for Gun Owners of America and founder of Empowered 2A. Stephen Willeford is grassroots liaison for Gun Owners of America and is known as “The Barefoot Defender” and the “Good Guy with a Gun” for confronting, trading fire and wounding mass shooter Devin Kelly on Nov. 15, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas.

Click here to watch the rally
Celebrate Small Businesses
As National Small Business Week and Pennsylvania Small Business Week draw to a close on Saturday (May 4), it is important to remember these employers are the backbone of our economy.

Pennsylvania is home to more than 1 million small businesses that employ approximately 2.5 million workers.

Small business owners have displayed incredible perseverance and resilience in the face of challenges, including the global pandemic, staffing shortages and economic downturn. House Republicans are working to advance policies to further help them thrive, including creating a more competitive tax climate, easing regulatory burdens and enhancing our workforce.

I hope you will join me in thanking and patronizing our small businesses year-round.
Administration Using Republican Bills in Standardized Testing Reforms
Recently Gov. Josh Shapiro announced actions to reduce and modernize standardized testing in schools. House Republican members were thrilled to see reforms they have advocated for included in Shapiro’s announcement, such as online PSSA and Keystone testing, as well as benchmark assessments throughout the year, thereby enabling educators to access results and data more swiftly.

“Most of the reforms Shapiro announced are ideas from my proposal, House Bill 887,” state Rep. Seth Grove (R-York) said. “I am thrilled to see Gov. Shapiro listening to Republican ideas about transitioning to electronic testing, which provides real-time results and benchmark assessments to ensure students are learning throughout the school year. Reforms like this are exactly what we are looking for in the ‘Back to Basics’ plan – returning agencies to their core functions before adding unnecessary spending.”

“I’m pleased the governor is building off the work Rep. (Eric) Nelson and I started last year and others like Rep. Barb Gleim have been working on for many years before that,” state Rep. Martina White (R-Philadelphia) said. “I support any action that lessens the burden on students, teachers and school administrators. Duplicative standardized testing takes too much time out of classroom instruction with little benefit to student outcomes. Our education system needs reforms so kids throughout our state can succeed. This is something Democrats and Republicans agree on.”

“I’m glad the governor is embracing these Republican-led initiatives and is looking to improve our broken testing process,” said state Rep. Eric Nelson (R-Westmoreland). “Wanting to give educators the tools they need to deliver great results is not a partisan issue.”

“I am happy the plan to reform the state system of standardized testing will focus on helping teachers assess students based on a benchmark-type assessment, designed to provide them with data they can use during the school year in which the students are tested,” said state Rep. John Schlegel (R-Lebanon). “This will help drive instruction and improve student achievement.”

“We are proud to see the governor embrace these changes and hope he uses this as an opportunity to incorporate other Republican initiatives,” the members shared.

“I am hopeful this announcement, unlike many other announcements Shapiro has made over the past year and a half, will be followed up with action,” Grove added. “We’ve seen enough poorly thought-out proposals; let's work together to get this one done.”
Spring Gobbler Season Underway
Pennsylvania’s 2024 spring gobbler season began last Saturday, April 27, with a half-day hunt for junior hunters and mentored hunters 16 and under.

The regular season runs May 4-31, with hunting hours going from a half hour before sunrise until noon from May 4-18, then from a half hour before sunrise until a half hour after sunset from May 20-31.

For details, including licensing and safety tips, click here.
Harrisburg Area Transportation Study (HATS) Public Comment Period Open
The public comment period for the draft HATS FFY 2025-2028 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and associated Air Quality Conformity Determination is open May 1 - June 1. Review documents are available here.

The draft HATS FFY 2025-2028 TIP is a comprehensive listing of all federally funded transportation highway, bridge, transit and miscellaneous transportation improvement projects in the HATS area programmed for funding the next four years.

Copies of the draft HATS FFY 2025-2028 TIP and the Air Quality Conformity Determination are available for public review at Tri-County Regional Planning Commission’s Office – 112 Market St., 2nd Floor, Harrisburg; Cumberland County Planning Commission’s Office – 310 Allen Road, Carlisle; Perry County Planning Commission’s Office – Veterans Office Building, New Bloomfield.

An in-person public meeting will occur on Wednesday, May 15, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Strawberry Square Atrium (320 Market St., Harrisburg). Virtual public meetings will be held via zoom on Tuesday, May 7, at 6 p.m. (register here) and Thursday, May 23, at noon (register here).

All comments should be submitted in writing to Andrew Bomberger, Tri-County Regional Planning Commission, 112 Market St., 2nd Floor, Harrisburg, PA, 17101-2015; email:, no later than 4:30 pm on Thursday, June 1.
Carlisle Community Pool Opening Day is Saturday, May 25
The summer season opens on Saturday, May 25, and runs through Monday, Sept. 2.
For details visit here.

PA Department of Corrections Area Job Fair

Newville First Responders Day Celebration

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Office Locations
District Office: 437 E North Street | Carlisle, PA 17013 | Phone: 717-249-1990
427 Irvis Office Building | House Box 202199 Harrisburg, PA 17120-2199 | 717-772-2280