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In this Email Update:
Enhanced security screening for Syrian refugees
In light of the horrific attacks that took place in Paris and the threat on Washington from Islamic State militants, the protection of our nation is imperative.
In an effort to enhance the state’s security and the well-being of Pennsylvanians, I recently signed on as a co-sponsor to Senator John Rafferty’s resolution, which would direct Governor Wolf to put a hold on accepting Syrian refugees into Pennsylvania until the federal government establishes a thorough vetting and screening process.
The main priority and responsibility of our governor is to protect the residents of Pennsylvania, and it is critical that we receive proper instructions on how to properly screen incoming Syrian refugees in order to ensure that we do not compromise the safety and lives of innocent Pennsylvanians.
Read more about the resolution here.
Evaluating current practices of real estate utilization policies
On Wednesday, the Senate State Government Committee unanimously approved a resolution I sponsored with Senator Randy Vulakovich which would evaluate current practices of real estate utilization policies with regards to state owned and leased properties.
Senate Resolution 215, would require the Joint State Government Commission to review the use and procurement of state owned and leased office space, storage facilities, garages, and other property. The study will also compare procedures utilized in the private sector and other entities in leasing, acquisition and management of property.
The goal of this study is two-fold: 1) to find where the biggest opportunities exist for saving taxpayers money and reducing wasteful spending; and 2) to find ways to maximize the way we use state spaces.
Read more about the resolution here.
Voters to decide mandatory retirement age for judges
The Senate approved legislation last week that will give Pennsylvania voters the ultimate decision on whether the mandatory retirement age of judges should be increased.
House Bill 89 increases the mandatory retirement age for judges and magisterial district judges from 70 to 75 years in the Judicial Code. This bill only becomes effective if a proposed constitutional amendment, House Bill 90, which was approved in two consecutive legislative sessions, is adopted by the voters.
The Senate approved eight bills last week and sent them to the House of Representatives for consideration.
Senate Bill 62 amends state law regarding probationary driver’s licenses.
Senate Bill 146 requires passengers in a vehicle to render aid to any person injured in an accident.
Senate Bill 518 gives people the power to plan for the management and disposition of their digital assets in the same way they can make plans for their tangible property: by providing instructions in a will, trust, or power of attorney.
Senate Bill 927 requires Senate approval of Pennsylvania’s representatives on the Delaware River Bridge Commission.
House Bill 934 amends the Public Welfare Code to codify the Keystone Education Yields Success (KEYS) Program. The bill returns to the House for concurrence on Senate amendments.
Senate Bill 1045 standardizes the definition of “Veteran” by defining the term “Conditions other than Dishonorable.”
Senate Bill 1046 standardizes the process for promotion on the retired list of the Pennsylvania National Guard.
House Bill 1411 brings the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania into compliance with changes made by Congress to the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act. The bill returns to the House for concurrence on Senate amendments.
Eight bills sent to governor
Eight bills received final legislative approval last week and were sent to the Governor for enactment into law.
Senate Bill 77 provides regulatory relief for beagle trainers.
House Bill 239 amends the County Pension Law to further provide for definitions and for supplemental benefits.
Senate Bill 609 creates the Prostate Cancer Surveillance, Education, Detection and Treatment Act.
House Bill 753 establishes the Pennsylvania Long-Term Care Council within the Department of Aging.
Senate Bill 775 updates and revises the Third Class City Code.
Senate Bill 791, which amends the Second Class Township Code further providing for removal of elected township officers for failure to perform duties.
Senate Bill 793 amends the Second Class Township Code to further provide for property maintenance codes, reserved powers, and the Uniform Construction Code.
Senate Bill 887 protects highway workers, first emergency responders and others from careless and reckless drivers traveling in work zones.