May. 10, 2019

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Legislative Report
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol

Fighting for Efficiency, Transparency, and Frugality
As part of our “Government Done Right” initiative, House Republicans passed additional bills this week to increase transparency, save taxpayers money and improve the efficiency of government.

House Bill 880 would extend and accelerate the reduction of the debt ceiling for the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program by $500 million over five years. Lowering our debt reduces the financial burden of current and future taxpayers.

To ensure businesses get effective and fair treatment when navigating the Commonwealth’s legal system, the House voted to create Commerce Courts. Under House Bill 332, these courts would have judges dedicated to hearing and deciding complex business-related cases, including acquisitions, mergers, dissolutions and liquidations, among other items.

The bills now go to the Senate for its consideration.

Expanding School Choice in Pennsylvania
More students and their families would have access to additional educational options under legislation approved by the House this week to expand the successful Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program.

House Bill 800 would increase funding for the program by $100 million to $210 million, providing tens of thousands of additional Pennsylvania families the ability to choose a school that best fits their students’ needs.

In order to ensure that the scholarship program can continue to grow to meet demand, the legislation would also establish an automatic escalator, increasing the EITC scholarship cap by 10% whenever 90% of the tax credits are claimed in the prior year.

To allow more middle-class families access to this program, the bill would increase the maximum annual household income by $10,000 (to $95,000, before add-ons per child), while guaranteeing that once a student has received a scholarship, he or she will remain eligible through high school graduation regardless of changes to family income.

The EITC program provides tax credits to businesses that make contributions to approved scholarship organizations offering scholarships to children in kindergarten through grade 12, educational improvement organizations providing funding for innovative educational programs in public schools, and pre-kindergarten scholarship organizations offering scholarships to children enrolled in pre-kindergarten programs.

The bill now moves to the Senate for its consideration.

State Government Committee Update from Chairman Everett
The following bills passed out of the House State Government Committee this week:

House Bill 305 establishes the freestanding State-Owned Assets and Mobile Broadband Services Act. The bill directs the Department of General Services (DGS) to include, in its surveys and inventories of Commonwealth real estate structures and assets, information on the possible use of those assets for fixed or mobile broadband services. It also allows any county to transmit to DGS an inventory of county-owned assets that may be used to provide broadband services in underserved and unserved areas. Further, it permits state agencies responsible for state-owned assets in an unserved or underserved area to lease or convey a license or other interest in the asset to a qualified provider of wireless broadband service.
House Bill 283, which will allow agencies burdened by Right-to-Know requests to charge an additional commercial purpose fee aimed at recouping some of the costs associated with extensive records requests that are made for a commercial purpose.

Gun Law Seminar May 29
I will be hosting a free gun law seminar for residents of the 84th District on Wednesday, May 29 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Loyalsock Volunteer Fire Company No. 1, 715 Northway Road, Williamsport.

This event offers a unique chance for potential and experienced firearm owners to expand their knowledge of gun laws, so they have a better understanding of how to responsibly exercise their right to keep and bear arms.

Judge Lovecchio will speak on Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground. Sheriff Lusk will speak on carrying firearms. State Trooper Angela Bieber will speak on interacting with the police and an officer of the Game Commission will speak on laws relating to hunting.

RSVPs are required. Please call 570-546-2084 or email

Celebrating Our Small Businesses

This week marks Small Business Week in Pennsylvania as the House passed Rep. Torren Ecker’s (R-Adams/Cumberland) resolution to honor the hard-working men and women on the Commonwealth.

Small businesses are the backbone of the Commonwealth’s economy, employing over 2.5 million people. In fact, 99.6% of employers in the state are small businesses.

House Republicans have been working hard to help Pennsylvania’s small businesses thrive and grow by fighting to repeal burdensome and costly regulations that hold up job growth and get rid of outdated laws.

Please remember to support our local small businesses this month!

Thank you to our Teachers!
As we celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week, I want to give a special thank you to our teachers here in the Commonwealth that work hard to help our kids have a successful and fulfilling academic experience. We as parents (and Sue and I as grandparents) in Pennsylvania are forever grateful for their dedication to a brighter future for all of our children.
Some great kids and their teachers from Renn Elementary School came for a visit to the Capitol this week. We hope they stop by again soon!

Montgomery Area Elementary School Visits the Capitol

Some very smart 4th graders from Montgomery Area Elementary School, and their teacher Mrs. Kim Lorson, came to the Capitol this week to participate in the Pennsylvania Association for Educational Communications and Technology (PAECT) 27th Annual PAECT Student Technology Showcase.

The showcase is held annually to present legislators and the public with the opportunity to learn how teachers are integrating technology into K-12 classrooms across the Commonwealth.
Pennsylvania is so lucky to have teachers like Mrs. Lorson! It was a pleasure to meet her and hear from her students about how much they enjoy learning with her.

Bring the Kids to a Bike Safety Fair!
The 4th Annual Jacob’s Bike Safety Fair is coming up at the Jersey Shore Community Pool, located at 410 Thompson Street. The event will take place May 11 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

There will be a bike obstacle course and help with registration, inspection, and safety.

Bring your helmet to receive a reward and enter for a chance to win a new bike!

Improving CPR Education to Save Lives
This week the House passed Senate Bill 115 aimed at teaching students cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to help them save lives.

The bill would require the Pennsylvania Department of Education to work with the Department of Health and other stakeholders to develop curriculum that could be used by schools across the state. The aim is to help reduce the more than 350,000 cardiac arrests that occur outside of a hospital each year by preparing students to save lives through CPR and the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED).

The bill now heads back to the Senate for concurrence.

Pennsylvania Joins Coalition to Stop Scam Robocalls
A coalition of 42 states sending formal comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was led by Pennsylvania and included Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia.

The coalition urged the FCC to adopt its proposed rules on enforcement against caller ID spoofing on calls to the United States originating from overseas, while also addressing spoofing in text messaging and alternative voice services.

Veterans Outreach Hours at My Office
I want to remind the veterans in the 84th District that American Legion Service Officer Dan Falls is available at my Muncy office to meet with them. Dan stops by every fourth Tuesday of the month, or by appointment.

Call (570) 546-2084 to schedule an appointment in advance.

Veterans in the 84th Legislative District can also contact retired MSGT George W. Heiges, Jr., director of Lycoming County Office of Veterans Affairs at (570) 320-2101 or (570) 327-2365. In Union County, contact Director J.D. Kerstetter, Union County Office of Veterans Affairs at, (570) 524-8677.

Services to veterans and their dependents include assistance with:
• Compensation, pension, and death benefits.
• Education and health care.
• Veterans benefits.

Veterans do not need to be a member of the American Legion to receive services.

Have an Issue or Concern?
If you are a resident of the 84th District and need assistance with a state agency, please feel free to contact my Muncy office at 570-546-2084. One of my staff members will be more than happy to assist you.

Stay in Touch with Me on Social Media
You can stay up to date on my latest news and activities by visiting my House website,, or my official Facebook page. You can watch my House floor speeches and press interviews at my YouTube channel HERE
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Office Locations
Penn Hills Plaza, Halls Station, 21 Kristi Road, Suite 1, Muncy, PA 17756 | Phone: (570) 546-2084
Tiadaghton Valley Mall, Room 105, 701 Allegheny Street, Box 4. Jersey Shore, PA 17740 | Phone: (570) 398-4476               
401 Irvis Office Building, PO Box 202084, Harrisburg PA 17120-2084 | Phone: (717) 787-5270
TTY: 855-282-0614