Below are some important Harrisburg updates that may be helpful to you.
This week was certainly a little unorthodox when it comes to our session days, but the ability to hold Session by Zoom made the Senate able to conduct important business despite the weather.
As is customary, the first week in February has usually been the time for the Governor to issue his budget address. This year, it was a taped video address and not to members of the General Assembly, but the process will still be the same as we now enter months of negotiations and hearings regarding the proposed budget. While I do applaud some of the goals the Governor is reaching for, I have a lot of concerns about the product he laid out. You can read my response regarding the proposed state budget here.
Also this week, the Senate Health and Human Services and the Senate Aging and Youth Committees held a joint hearing to get answers from the Administration regarding the slow and concerning roll out of the COVID-19 vaccine in Pennsylvania. You can watch the full hearing here, and view my specific questions here.
A proposed constitutional amendment to limit the length of future emergency disaster declarations unless an extension is approved by the General Assembly received final legislative approval today and will now be put before the voters to decide in the May 18 primary election.
Lastly, Senate Bill 109, a comprehensive $912 million relief package to help restaurants, schools, employers, and tenants impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, was amended in the House of Representatives on Thursday to exempt income received from the federal Paycheck Protection Program and stimulus checks from taxation under the state’s Personal Income Tax and approved there on Friday. It was then considered and approved by the Senate Rules and Executive Nominations Committee on Friday, immediately prior to the full Senate concurrence vote that sent the measure to the Governor for enactment into law.
If you’re interested, you can sign up to receive my newsletters that contain the most up to date information on statewide and local issues on my website, senatormensch.com. You can also keep an eye on my website for news releases, email me with questions or concerns, or find contact information for my district offices which you can get in touch with if you need anything.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 215-541-2388.
Senator Bob Mensch
24th Senatorial District