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This E-newsletter serves to keep you updated on what is happening throughout Bradford, Lycoming, Sullivan, Susquehanna and Union counties and what I am doing as your state senator in Harrisburg. I hope that you will find this E-newsletter helpful, and if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.
goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible." Happening This
Happening This Week
Judiciary Committee Hearing
Appropriations Committee Meeting
Rules & Executive Nominations Committee Meeting
Local Government Committee Meeting
SB 365 (Gordner) - An Act amending the act of May 1, 1933 (P.L.103, No.69), known as The Second Class Township Code, in corporate powers, further providing for personal property.
SB 399 (Gordner) - An Act amending the act of May 1, 1933 (P.L.103, No.69), known as The Second Class Township Code, in election of officers and vacancies in office, further providing for supervisors.
Possibly SB 252 (Vulakovich) - An Act amending Title 53 (Municipalities Generally) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, in parking authorities, providing for granting of interests and mixed-use projects for authorities in cities of the second class.
To see more Committee Hearings/Meetings,
Senate Approves Lobbyist Disclosure Bill
The Senate on Wednesday approved government reform legislation introduced by Sen. Dan Laughlin (R-Erie) that would provide improved transparency regarding lobbyist disclosure reports.
Senate Bill 169 would require lobbyists to register and file reports electronically through a computerized system developed by the Pennsylvania Department of State. Currently, lobbyists may register and file reports on paper forms, which in some cases has delayed the posting of the information on the department’s website.
SB 169 requires the department to post on its website all lobbying registration and reporting documents it receives within seven days. The measure also bars lobbyists from charging a contingency fee for grants awarded to their clients. More
Senate Approves Scavello Bill Allowing Falconry on Sundays
Legislation sponsored by Sen. Mario Scavello (R-Monroe) to allow Pennsylvanians to engage in falconry on Sundays was approved by the Senate on Monday.
Currently, Pennsylvania law prohibits hunting on Sunday, with the exception of the hunting of foxes and coyotes. Senate Bill 123 will add an exception for falconry, the sport of hunting small game species with birds of prey. The bill was sent to the House of Representatives for consideration. More
Firm Tells Committee State Could Save Millions Annually in Health Costs
An experienced health care management firm told members of the Senate Majority Policy Committee on Tuesday that the state could see an 8 to 15 percent reduction in all medical costs through the use of new technology and evidence-based medicine.
During the hearing, representatives from MedExpert touted the results of its Medicaid coordinated care initiative in Alaska. The program uses technology and health care management tools to directly assist patients in getting the care they need.
The hearing, which was held at the request of Sen. Scott Martin (R-Lancaster) and hosted by Committee Chairman Sen. David Argall (R-Schuylkill), focused on how a similar system could be applied to Pennsylvania’s healthcare market. More
The Senate Judiciary Committee also met on Tuesday, March 21st to consider
an animal cruelty measure, known as Libre’s Law. Senate Bill 298 increases
the penalties for the most heinous of animal abuse. I was proud to
co-sponsor this measure, which was unanimously approved by the Committee. The Committee also considered two bills that would consolidate the
state Department of Corrections and the Board of Probation and Parole to
create a new state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, as well as
other legislative initiatives.
Addressing Opioid Abuse and Misuse
“We have to start educating young people and addressing young people. That’s where the problem starts”.
On Friday, I joined Pennsylvania's Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine & Steve Keener, President & CEO of Little League Baseball at UPMC Susquehanna to discuss opioid Rx guidelines for young athletes. Many adolescents become addicted to opioids after sports injuries or after being prescribed opioids for other health-related issues. Thanks to recent legislation, doctors must provide counseling to parents and kids on the proper use of opioids. Additionally, parents must now sign a consent form to allow the prescribing of an opioid to their child.
The Center for Rural Pennsylvania Welcomes New Board Members
On Thursday, March 9th, current Center for Rural Pennsylvania Board Members and staff welcomed two new members to the Center’s Board of Directors. They include Dr. Michael A. Driscoll, President of Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Dr. Timothy Kelsey of Penn State University. Dr. Driscoll became president of Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 2012. He has led the university’s adoption of a shared vision and plan, leveraging IUP’s strengths as a doctoral/research university to meet the needs of Pennsylvania’s residents while attracting students from across the nation and around the world. Dr. Kelsey currently teaches courses on community-based research methodologies, economic development tools, such as economic impact analysis, and community development. He has been at Penn State since 1991, and received his Masters and Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Michigan State University.
Little League® to Welcome Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals to 2017 Little League Baseball® World Series for the MLB Little League Classic on August 20
Little League® International and Major League Baseball recently announced that the Pittsburgh Pirates will play the St. Louis Cardinals during the 71st Little League Baseball® World Series in South Williamsport on August 20, 2017. The World Series kicks off on Thursday, August 17th through Sunday, August 27th.
The Pirates and Cardinals will be part of the 'MLB Little League Classic' that will take place at BB&T Park at Historic Bowman Field in Williamsport later that night. This special event will spotlight Little League International’s commitment to working with MLB to celebrate youth baseball and softball through its PLAY BALL Initiative.
The importance of this cooperative undertaking between Little League
Baseball and Major League Baseball will be remembered for generations.
Moreover, it will undoubtedly have life-changing effects on all of the
players. We owe a sincere 'thank you' to MLB for coming to Williamsport.
Visit to the Greater Susquehanna Valley YMCA
On Tuesday, March 7th, I had the opportunity to tour the site of the
YMCA in Lewisburg. The YMCA will be located in the Weis Plaza at the former
Wal-Mart along Route 15.
Sam Quinones to Discuss 'Dreamland' During Williamsport Visit
On Monday, April 3rd, Sam Quinones, a former Los Angeles-based journalist, will share the insights he gained while writing his book "Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic" during a 7 PM presentation at the Community Arts Center in downtown Williamsport. The presentation is free and open to the public.
Quinones will discuss the development and writing of his book, which traces
the emergence and social impacts of the national crisis of opioid and
heroin abuse. His stories center around the fall and rise of Portsmouth,
Ohio, as the backdrop to weave together two riveting tales of capitalism
run amok: the unfettered prescription of addictive pain medications during
the 1990s and the influx of black tar heroin.
Senate Environmental Director Joins PA Chamber Discussion
On Thursday, March 16th, Adam Pankake, who serves as the
Executive Director of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, which
I serve as Chairman, provided a legislative overview for the 2017-18
Legislative Session during a forum hosted by the Pennsylvania Chamber of
Business and Industry. The discussion focused on key regulatory and policy
Muncy 4th Grade Elementary Students Visit the State Capitol
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