Capitol Quick Hits for 6.1.15

Capitol Quick Hits for 6.1.15

Here are the highlights from news conferences, rallies, and advocacy days held in the Capitol today: 

  • The Alliance of Bikers Aimed Toward Education (ABATE) were joined legislators and hundreds of motorcyclists to support HB 853, which would enhance penalties for distracted driving that results in severe injury or death. The family of Daniel Gallatin, the proposed law’s namesake, spoke about Gallatin, a father, grandfather, military veteran and fireman of nearly 40 years who was killed in May 2013 when his motorcycle was hit from behind in Lawrence County by a texting driver.
  • Rep. Mike Regan (R-York) joined the Keystone Alliance to Stop Utility Imposters this morning to call for increased public awareness of criminals who post as utility workers in order to commit against people in their homes. Rep. Regan said imposter utility worker crimes are on the rise and explained he has introduced HR 341 to designate the week of June 8 through 12, 2015 as Utility Imposter Awareness Week and increase awareness about the crime.
  • Supporters and members of Patients for Safe Access to Marijuana today rallied on the Capitol steps to call for enactment of SB 3, which provides for the legalization of medical marijuana in Pennsylvania.
  • Rep. Ryan Bizzarro (D-Erie) held a press conference in the Capitol Newsroom introducing HB 13, his legislation to allow Pennsylvanians to register to vote at their polling place on Election Day, provided they supply specified proof of identification and their current address.
  • The Bowling Proprietors’ Association of Pennsylvania (BPAP) held their third annual legislative bowling for charity event in the East Wing Rotunda. With this year’s theme “Strikes and Spares for Hope and Healing,” BPAP will be making a generous donation to all five Ronald McDonald House programs in Pennsylvania. Legislators were invited and encouraged to roll one bowling ball down the lane to help raise money. 

Monday, June 1, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Event Central
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Senate Republican chairmen dissuaded from governor’s severance tax plan following hearing

Senate Republican chairmen dissuaded from governor’s severance tax plan following hearing

After two Senate committees held a joint hearing on Gov. Tom Wolf’s natural gas severance tax plan Monday, both Republican chairmen of the committees said the testimony only further emboldened their opposition.

During his March budget address, Gov. Wolf unveiled a plan to tax natural gas extracts that would direct the derived revenue to education through the Pennsylvania Education Reinvestment Act, which has a goal of increasing the pre-K through 12 investment by $2 billion over four years.

“I think the education funding is something they’re using as a crutch to try to drive taxes up on the drillers,” said Sen. John Eichelberger (R-Blair), who chairs the Senate Finance Committee.

Monday, June 1, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Senate Democratic leaders provide June forecast

Senate Democratic leaders provide June forecast

Following a meeting with Gov. Tom Wolf, The PLS Reporter caught up with Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) and Senate Appropriations Committee Minority Chairman Vincent Hughes (D-Philadelphia) to find out what they think is needed to get to a final budget product.

“We’re working towards a June 30th deadline,” Sen. Costa said.

“Our caucus’s role is going to be to advocate for a significant increase in education funding, I think it’s what the people of Pennsylvania want us to do,” he added. “We’ll be looking at trying to grow jobs and do what we can with respect to economic development and making sure we can address the very structural deficit that we have in Pennsylvania so we’re on strong financial ground going forward fiscally.”

Monday, June 1, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
VIDEO: An interview with the Department of Community and Economic Development Sec. Dennis Davin

VIDEO: An interview with the Department of Community and Economic Development Sec. Dennis Davin

Meet DCED Sec. Dennis Davin. Find out about his career in community development, his goals for the department, and what he likes to do when he can find some free time. 

Thursday, May 28, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
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For the good of it: Rep. Readshaw and the Ride to Gettysburg

The PLS Reporter takes a look at charitable work by legislators

It started with a newspaper story about the upkeep of some monuments at the Gettysburg National Military Park.

“It sort of caught my attention and I thought, ‘Well, someone should do something about that’,” said Rep. Harry Readshaw (D-Allegheny), who started and leads the annual Ride to Gettysburg.

“I really didn’t think it was going to be me, but I thought it would be sort of a good idea if somebody did do something.”

The Ride to Gettysburg is held in September and consists of an average of 350 motorcycle riders going from the Capitol fountain to Gettysburg.

It is one of two events sponsored by Rep. Readshaw that raise money for The Pennsylvania Monuments Project, which provides for upkeep of unendowed Pennsylvania monuments.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
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