Legislation banning public officers from taking cash gifts or their equivalents made its way through the Senate State Government Committee Monday afternoon with the legislation anticipated to be passed by the full Senate by the end of the week.
Senate Bill 1327 by Sen. Lisa Baker (R-Luzerne) amends the law regulating public officers to prohibit the acceptance of cash gifts or their equivalents from a lobbyist or someone with business before the Commonwealth.
Sen. Baker noted she has been interested in introducing the legislation for months, particularly since she represents the area affected by the “Kids-for-Cash” scandal where judges took cash in exchange for sentencing juveniles to facilities owned by those offering the bribes when the sentences were not warranted.
“I believe this bill is a straightforward, commonsense approach,” Sen. Baker stated.
She further noted the bill addresses situations where public officers receive things like “Kohl’s Cash” or other store rewards. “We wanted to ensure that some of those common sense things were also considered as part of the legislation,” she said.
Sen. Baker called this a first step in putting a fundamental principle into law.