Senator Mensch’s Breast Cancer Checkoff Legislation Advances Unanimously from Transportation Committee

HARRISBURG – Senate Bill 445, sponsored by Senator Bob Mensch (R-24), advanced unanimously out of the Senate Transportation Committee today (April 20). This legislation would give individuals renewing either their vehicle registration or driver’s license an option to donate to the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition.

Statistics show that one in eight women in the United States will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. While not exclusive to women, breast cancer will count for over 276,000 new cases this year in the United States, and almost 50,000 cases in Pennsylvania. Unfortunately, breast cancer will claim the lives of roughly 42,000 women nationwide, and an estimated 2,000 in Pennsylvania alone.

Senate Bill 445, also known as ‘Breast Cancer Checkoff’ legislation, will mirror similar processes set in statute which allow individuals renewing registrations or a driver’s license to include an optional $5 donation to the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition. There are currently options to donate to the Veterans’ Trust Fund, pediatric cancer research, and the Keystone Tree Restricted Account.

“In Pennsylvania, we are privileged to have the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition as the guiding light for finding a cure for breast cancer,” Mensch said. “The Coalition, led by president and CEO, Pat Halpin-Murphy, have been leading the fight against breast cancer since 1993. Their mission is simple – to find a cure for breast cancer NOW, so that our daughters don’t have to. I was honored to have Pat and others from the PBCC in the gallery during this advancement of such important legislation.”

The Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) has been leading the fight against breast cancer since 1993. Their mission is simple – to find a cure for breast cancer now so our daughters don’t have to. Over the years, PBCC has spent over 1,500 hours on patient advocacy and contributed over $4.3 million to breast cancer researchers in Pennsylvania. They have also been courageous champions in the push for legislative solutions for expanding insurance coverage for early detection of breast cancer in women.

“We salute Senator Mensch for introducing SB445, a critical step in finding a cure for breast cancer now… so our daughters don’t have to. We also thank the Senate Transportation Committee and Senator Langerholc for considering the bill,” said PA Breast Cancer Coalition President Pat Halpin-Murphy. “This year, over 13,000 women in our state will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Our breast cancer researchers desperately need funding to turn their ideas in the lab into life-saving treatments for patients in Pennsylvania and beyond.”

“Advancing breast cancer research will benefit not only Pennsylvanians but our nation as a whole. Therefore, I prioritized this legislation early in the session to ensure we provide more resources to support breast cancer research,” said Senator Wayne Langerholc, Jr., (R-35) chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee. “With the enactment of this legislation, individuals can voluntarily contribute to the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition while renewing a driver’s license or vehicle registration online. This is an innovative way to increase breast cancer research funding.”

Watch Senator Mensch’s floor remarks here.

For more information on Senator Mensch’s legislation, visit www.senatormensch.com.  State updates can also be found on Senator Mensch’s Facebook at facebook.com/PASenatorBobMensch/ or Twitter @SenatorMensch.

CONTACT: Madison Scarfaro mscarfaro@pasen.gov  (215) 541-2388