View in browser

Welcome to "Mike's Memo," an update on what's happening in the 48th Legislative District, the State Capitol, and the progress of my legislative priorities. If you haven't done so already, please take a few moments to visit my website at to learn more about issues that may affect you and your family.

Week of October 30, 2017

Bills Pass Senate, Go to House for Further Consideration
All bills passed unanimously unless otherwise noted.
Senate Bill 542 – permits pharmacists to dispense some emergency prescription refills;
Senate Bill 625 – requires PA rest areas and welcome centers to fly a POW/MIA flag;
Senate Bill 676 – addresses ongoing funding deficiencies in the Workers’ Compensation Uninsured Employers Guarantee Fund;
Senate Bill 822 – requires the POW/MIA flag be displayed on state government properties that already fly US or State flags;
Senate Bill 935 – (34-16) restricts the amount of time a person may serve as the Executive Director of the PA Fish and Boat Commission;
Senate Bill 936 – (34-16) requires the PA Department of Labor & Industry to adopt an evidence-based drug formulary for the Workers’ Compensation program to ensure there are no conflicts of interest and/or overuse of opioids with prescriptions;
House Bill 1388 – (37-13) reauthorizes the PA Children’s Health Insurance Program;
House Bill 1490 – gives the PA Public Utility Commission oversight over the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority.

Bills Pass Senate, Go to Governor for Further Action
All bills passed unanimously unless otherwise noted.
Senate Bill 181 – performance based budgeting requiring all Commonwealth departments and agencies to justify budget requests before receiving consideration for funding;
Senate Bill 222 – (49-1) adds Court of Common Pleas Judges;
Senate Bill 242PA One Call Law updates;
Senate Bill 260 – provides broader crime victim representation on the PA Commission on Crime and Delinquency Victims’ Services Advisory Committee;
Senate Bill 651 – the Capital Budget Project Itemization Act of 2017-18;
House Bill 46 – establishes a Pediatric Cancer Research state income tax form check-off;
House Bill 178 – (35-15) 2017-18 Education Code (for state budget implementation);
House Bill 203 – increases the amount an employer may pay directly to a surviving relative for the decedent’s final paycheck;
House Bill 271 – (31-19) expansion of PA gaming;
House Bill 542 – (29-21) 2017-18 Tax Code (for state budget implementation);
House Bill 674 – (41-9) 2017-18 Fiscal Code (for state budget implementation);
House Bill 785 – the Capital Facilities Debt Enabling Act.

Bill Signed into Law by the Governor
House Bill 176 – Act 35 – exempts roadside produce stands from the Uniform Construction Code.

SR 227 Adopted, a Concurrent Resolution on Fuel-Secure Generation Resources
Senate Resolution 227 was adopted by the PA Senate, 42-8. A concurrent resolution on fuel-secure generation resources, SR 227 urges the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to swiftly consider the Department of Energy’s proposed Grid Resiliency Pricing Rule and implement policies and adopt tariffs to ensure fuel-secure generation resources receive proper compensation for the positive attributes they provide our electric systems, such as reliability and resiliency. The goal of this resolution is to promote PA’s energy resources to the betterment of our economy, people and overall prosperity and to protect against unforeseen challenges that could threaten our electric grid – including nuclear facilities like Three Mile Island.

Miss Pennsylvania, Katie Schreckengast, of Palmyra, Visits PA Capitol
I had the honor of hosting Miss Pennsylvania, Katie Schreckengast, and her mother, Lori, at the PA Capitol. Katie is from Palmyra, Lebanon County, and is a senior Broadcast Journalism major at Penn State, where she is an alto saxophone in the PSU Blue Band.

Katie made Pennsylvania very proud during the Miss America competition in September where she made it into the Top 10! Watch my introduction of Katie below, as well as Katie addressing the Senate regarding her Miss Pennsylvania journey, her positive and wonderful story of adoption and her platform, “Building Families Through Adoption.”

10/24/17 - Introduction of Miss Pennsylvania, Katie Schreckengast

PA Bulletin Notice: Dept. of Health Medical Marijuana Advisory Board Meeting
A Pennsylvania Bulletin Notice has been published announcing the PA Department of Health Medical Marijuana Advisory Board will meet on Monday, November 6 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. in Hearing Room 1, Keystone Building, 400 North Street, Harrisburg. This is the introductory meeting of the Board, whose purpose is to examine and analyze the Medical Cannabis law and regulations in PA and other states, accept and review written comments from individuals and organizations about medical marijuana, and issue a written report to the Governor, Senate and House of Representatives two years after the Act ’s effective date.

Congratulations Civil Air Patrol Cadet Second Lieutenant Brook Lynn Bartal
Cadet Second Lieutenant Brook Lynn Bartal, a member of the Civil Air Patrol Squadron 307 in Lebanon, has been honored with the General Billy Mitchell Award. The Civil Air Patrol Cadet Program provides opportunities for the development of teamwork and leadership skills in more than 26,000 young Americans from age 12 to 20. As cadets progress through the multi-level training program, they learn the principles of aviation and aerospace flight and the fundamentals of physics. The second milestone of the Cadet Program is the General Billy Mitchell Award. Once a cadet earns this award, they are promoted to Cadet Second Lieutenant. Exhibiting diligence in the pursuit of excellence, Cadet Second Lieutenant Bartal truly stands as a role model worthy of emulation for her noteworthy achievement, exemplary record of service and leadership! Congratulations!

Department of Homeland Security Grants PA REAL ID Enforcement Extension
The Department of Homeland Security has granted PA a REAL ID enforcement extension. This means there will be no disruptions to enter a federal facility or board a commercial flight, and a PennDOT issued driver’s license or identification card will be accepted through October 10, 2018 without a REAL ID or alternative form of identification.PennDOT anticipates REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses will be available at the customer’s option in March 2019. Pennsylvanians are encouraged to begin gathering required documentation to allow ample time to prepare. More information about required documents and REAL ID frequently asked questions can be found here.

Navigating the Aging Process Informational Sessions
WellSpan Good Samaritan Hospital, the Lebanon County Area Agency on Aging and I will hold two informational sessions in November on Navigating the Aging Process. The sessions will benefit those beginning advanced care planning and family members who may bear responsibility for their elder family members down the road. Topics will include medical directive forms, Medicaid and differences between levels of care with speakers from WellSpan Health, the Area Agency on Aging and Attorney Edward J. Coyle. Click here for details. For questions or more information, email

“Talk to Your State Senator” Middle and High School Statewide Video Competition
The PA Senate is holding a statewide video competition with support from the Drug and Alcohol Service Providers Organization of PA. The competition is open to all PA students grades 6-12. The video entry must address preventing teens from starting drugs – legal and illegal – including alcohol. Help the legislature create policies that work. Deadline for entry is December 10. Find more information, official rules and the registration form here. Videos will be judged in two categories: Middle School and High School. First place in each category will receive $2500, second place will receive $1500 and third place $1000. Prize money will be awarded through the PA 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan.

Nominations Open for Lebanon County Commission for Women’s Hall of Fame
Nominations are now open for the Lebanon County Commission for Women’s 2018 Women’s Hall of Fame. Consider nominating a colleague, friend, relative or acquaintance who goes above and beyond in their volunteer or professional efforts and who have made significant contributions to their community while serving as role models and hidden heroes. Nomination forms can be found here and will be accepted through November 30.

October Cable Show: Strite’s Orchard
My October Community Report cable show is ready to watch! In this month’s show, we feature Strite’s Orchard in Lower Swatara/Swatara Twp., Dauphin Co., who are celebrating over 100 years and are in their fourth generation of farming! Talking to Jon Strite took me way back to my produce broker days. Check out this wonderful local family farm… agricultural and small business at its best! Comcast On Demand and WHBG TV 20 should also be airing through the month of October.

October 2017 - Strites Orchard

Contact Information
Please feel free to contact me at any time on state-related issues that are of concern to you. I may be reached through my website or my Lebanon or Harrisburg offices.

When contacting my office by e-mail, mail, or telephone, please be sure to share your e-mail, telephone number, and address so that we can follow up with you in a timely manner. Many inquiries can be handled with a phone call or email.

Was this message forwarded to you? Visit my website if you would like to receive your own copy of "Mike's Memo."

If you no longer wish to receive "Mike's Memo," please click here to unsubscribe.

Privacy Policy
2017 © Senate of Pennsylvania