Harrisburg Highlights-Week of June 20, 2022

Dear Friends,

As the June 30 deadline to pass a state budget approaches, the Senate spent part of this session week positioning bills that will be used to create a 2022-23 spending plan, along with passing other measures and holding committee activity.

The Senate approved my legislation to increase opportunities for students to attend Valley Forge Military Academy and College and boost the number of qualified commissioned officers in the Pennsylvania National Guard.

Senate Bill 1194 would establish a Pennsylvania Military Academy Assistance Program to recruit, train, educate and retain cadets from Valley Forge Military Academy and College (also known as the Pennsylvania Military Academy.) This will ensure that more graduates remain and serve in Pennsylvania. The measure now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.

The Senate also approved legislation to improve workforce development initiatives and better prepare Pennsylvania students for jobs that will be in demand after they graduate.

House Bill 723 incorporated language from a bill I am sponsoring with Sen. Vince Hughes (D-7), Senate Bill 168, that requires the state Department of Labor and Industry to collect data on emerging and projected future employment sectors in Pennsylvania and send it to educational institutions. Schools would be required to use the information to develop career education programs and for providing career guidance to students. The amended bill will return to the House of Representatives for consideration.

Legislation I co-sponsored that passed the Senate:

Senate Bill 569 protects the rights of Pennsylvania’s corrections officers by requiring specific procedures for suspensions and interrogations when an officer is accused of misconduct. 

Senate Bill 1093 allows energy-efficient lighting to be installed on outdoor advertising devices, such as billboards, while maintaining compliance with federal regulations.

Senate Bill 1173 gives continuing educational credits to dentists who volunteer at free clinics and charity events.

Other measures that passed the Senate include:

Senate Bill 1188 requires insurance coverage for testing and treatment of tickborne diseases, such as Lyme disease. Pennsylvania leads the nation in Lyme disease cases.

Senate Bill 1124 requires the Department of Human Services to check death certificates with the Bureau of Vital Statistics so that Medical Assistance and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) payments can be halted immediately when a recipient’s death is recorded, and welfare fraud can be prevented.

You can find a list of everything the Senate voted on this week here.

 

CONTACT: Lidia Di Fiore  ldifiore@pasen.gov  (215) 541-2388