HARRISBURG, May 11 – The state House of Representatives this week significantly altered a Senate bill meant to bring Pennsylvania IDs in line with federal security requirements. To comply with the Federal Real ID Act of 2005, Pennsylvania must repeal its Real ID Non-Participation Act, which passed in 2012. Senate Bill 133, which contained many of the required changes, was amended Monday in the House State Government Committee to rename the 2012 act without repealing it. The amendment was approved along party lines. State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., said that the Senate version, pre-amendment, would comply with the federal requirements, which include permitting citizens to access federal buildings, including military installations, by eventually using an updated driver’s license (Real ID) to be issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. “Pennsylvania needs to demonstrate its willingness to comply with the federal requirements by June 6 of 2017,” DeLissio said. “The federal Department of Homeland Security will then further extend our compliance deadline to ensure that folks can fly commercially as of January 2018 without a passport.” The bill awaits a final vote in the House. If it passes the House, it will need to go back to the Senate for concurrence on changes. “We’ve had ample time to get in line with federal requirements; we are running the risk of impacting Read more
HARRISBURG, May 11 – A bill that would require pharmacy technicians to register with the State Board of Pharmacy passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives this week, said state Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, who voted for the bill. Under H.B. 454, in order to register with the board, pharmacy technicians would have to meet certain requirements such as having a high school diploma, submitting to a criminal-history background check, and completing a board-approved training program. There currently are no state-required training or minimal education requirements for pharmacy technicians. Pharmacy technicians are unlicensed, unregistered employees who are supervised by licensed pharmacists and help fill prescription orders. “When it comes to state oversight on health-care workers, we must act judiciously and in this case, I think House Bill 454 accomplishes that goal,” said DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila. “These individuals are tasked with working with medications, including controlled substances, and are charged with helping ensure that citizens receive the correct medications and in correct amounts.” The bill passed the House 176-16. It now is with the Senate for consideration. “This legislation has been introduced in each session since 2007 and did pass the House last session, but was not considered in the Senate,” DeLissio said. “Hopefully, the Senate will take up this legislation this session.” Read more
HARRISBURG, May 11 – State Rep. Pamela DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., announced her support during a Health Committee vote, for H.B. 174 , which would permit health care practitioners to prescribe long-term antibiotic therapies for a patient with Lyme disease or related tick-borne illness. The bill also would require insurance companies to cover treatment plans for these conditions regardless if that plan includes short-term or long-term antibiotics. “This bill provides patients and health care professionals another tool to combat Lyme disease, a disease every county in the Commonwealth is at high risk of having exposure to,” DeLissio said. “Patients should be able to focus on treatment and recovery, not worrying about whether their health insurance will cover the treatment they need.” Currently, the Centers for Disease Control recommends 30 days of antibiotics and insurance companies are not required to cover the cost of treatment after that, considering it experimental. Under H.B. 174, coverage of longer-term antibiotic treatment would not be denied solely because the treatment may be characterized as unproven, experimental or investigational in nature for the treatment of Lyme disease and related tick-borne illnesses. “When nearly half of Lyme cases don’t respond to short-term antibiotic treatment, it’s time to seek out and offer new treatment options without bankrupting those in Read more
Pa. state Rep. Pam DeLissio joined the Fair Districts PA coalition and various legislators at a Capitol rally urging support for state legislative and congressional redistricting reform. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, May 4 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., will host her next Policy Pow-Wow from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday, May 15 in her district office, 6511 Ridge Ave. The informal roundtable-style discussion will be on legislation related to the statute of limitations reform bill that would eliminate the criminal statute and expand the civil statute on future child sex crimes, and gun control legislation. Space is limited, so RSVPs are requested, which can be made by calling 215-482-8726 . “As I endeavor to continue my commitment to dialogue with constituents of the 194th Legislative District, I hope residents will find this format inviting and casual,” DeLissio said. “It is a pleasure sharing information with constituents, as well as learning from attendees.” Sara Stroman from Manayunk, who attended DeLissio’s Policy Pow Wow in April, said, “These Pow Wows provide a great opportunity to learn more about and give input on the policies that our state government is proposing. I appreciate that Pam actively and proactively seeks input from her constituents to aid in shaping her thinking on the issues.” The Policy Pow-Wows are BYOB – alcoholic or non-alcoholic. Light refreshments will be provided. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, May 4 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio will host her 64th town hall at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 17. Included in the town hall will be an update on the Transportation Department's Highway Safety Project for Henry Avenue that was initiated in 2012. “As a result of two community meetings hosted by my office, on October 8, 2015 and February 11, 2016, there is news to share from PennDOT regarding a timeline for safety improvements,” DeLissio said. “It is awesome to see the power of community input work to improve the conditions around us.” Other state legislative priorities also will be discussed, including an update on the state budget that is due on June 30. The town hall will be held in the Cook Wissahickon Elementary School Cafeteria, 201 E. Salaignac St., 19128. State legislative priorities and the state budget also will be discussed during the town hall. DeLissio’s town halls continue to attract constituents from all corners of the district and at each town hall about half the participants are attending their first town hall. As a first-time attendee at DeLissio’s April town hall meeting, Ruth Dubb from Bala Cynwyd said, “It was my first time at a town hall and it definitely will not be my last. I found it thorough, straightforward and informative. I was also impressed with how DeLissio respects civil discourse, as she does not represent one point of view and we should all be interested in Read more
HARRISBURG, May 4 – State Rep. Pamela DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., expressed concern that legislation passed by the House last week would make it easier for people and organizations to sue municipalities and leave taxpayers with the bill. DeLissio voted against H.B. 671 , which would give standing to almost anyone, regardless of adverse impact, to sue municipalities that have taken steps to protect their own citizens from gun abuse and violence. The bill would put municipalities on the hook for legal expenses if the plaintiff is successful, but would not require those taking legal action to cover expenses if the defendant, meaning the municipality, prevails. “Local government officials would be forced to weigh measures they believe protect their citizens versus the possibility of being sued. The bill would prevent municipal officials from doing what they believe is best for their communities and instead would put more power into the hands of those who would choose to sue including membership organizations that are based outside of Pennsylvania,” said DeLissio, who is vice chair of the PA SAFE Caucus, a group of legislators dedicated to reducing all types of violence in the community. House Bill 671 passed 134-53 and was forwarded to the Senate for consideration. “Instead of making it easier for lawsuits to bankrupt our towns, we should be working on real ways to reduce all types of violence, including gun violence,” DeLissio said. At Read more
HARRISBURG, May 3 – State Rep. Pamela DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., voted last week in favor of House Bill 1238 , a bill strengthening Pennsylvania’s animal cruelty laws. This bill passed the House with a vote of 167-20. “H.B.1238 gives voice and rights for animals who provide us companionship and service, but can’t speak for themselves,” DeLissio said. “I thank the bi-partisan group of legislators who joined me in bringing their voice to pass this bill.” H.B. 1238, among other reforms, includes Libre’s Law, which would make animal abuse a felony in the Commonwealth. Libre, a Boston terrier rescued from a Lancaster County farm after weeks of severe neglect, joined animal rights activists and other animals last week to rally and encourage state legislators to pass the bill. “This would not have been possible without the efforts of animal lovers and their furry friends from across the Commonwealth working together to push for these reforms,” DeLissio said. “Thank you to everyone who advocated for this bill in Harrisburg and in their communities. With your continued efforts I am optimistic Pennsylvania will finally join 47 other states in making animal abuse a felony. It is documented that abusers of animals are five times as likely to harm humans and by making animal abuse a felony we are hopefully preventing harm to people by these same abusers.” H.B. 1238 now heads Read more
HARRISBURG, April 28 – State Rep. Pamela DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., expressed disappointment with a House vote to approve a less than comprehensive reform bill to update the 20-year-old charter school law. DeLissio opposed House Bill 97 , which passed Tuesday by a vote of 108 to 84 and has been forwarded to the Senate for consideration. The bill mandates the addition of three board members to the current seven-person Charter School Appeal Board, and it will also create a Charter School Funding Advisory Commission to explore funding issues related to charter school entities and make recommendations to the General Assembly and the governor. The bill also creates a standard student-enrollment application. “The legislation does not adequately address flaws in the law that require school districts to pay cyber charter schools far more than the actual cost of educating students, and it doesn’t hold charter schools to the same standards of accountability and transparency as traditional public schools,” DeLissio said. “Additionally, it will create a system for evaluating students, teachers and administrators at charters that would be less rigorous than the system used in traditional public schools, making it challenging to compare strengths in relation to opportunities and outcomes between charters and traditional schools. “Charter school law needs reform, but H.B. 97 fails to provide the direction and opportunity Read more
DeLissio votes for bill allowing lottery-win intercepts in Pennsylvania HARRISBURG, April 27 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio on Monday voted in favor of a bill that would allow the state to intercept lottery winnings from individuals who owe back state taxes, back child support or victim restitution. House Bill 674 would require the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue to conduct a background check on any person who wins more than $2,500 in the Pennsylvania Lottery to determine if the individual owes such money. Any amount owed will be deducted from any winnings and remitted to the state. When both back child support and back taxes are owed, the child support obligation will be given first priority. “This is a reasonable approach to ensuring that a person who receives a winning hand fulfills their obligations to anyone they legally owe,” DeLissio said. “I’m proud to have supported the bill and look forward to quick action in the Senate so that the governor can sign this bill and get children, victims , and the state , money that is rightfully owed.” Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 20 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., will hold a free shredding event for residents of the 194 th Legislative District from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday, April 29, in the lot behind the Magisterial District Court, 925 Montgomery Ave. in Narberth (it is located next to Staples). Availability is on a first-come basis. Shredding will take place at the designated time or until the truck is full. There is a limit of four bags per household (standard storage/banker boxes or grocery bags). "Safe disposal of documents with personal information is one of the best defenses against identity theft,” said DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila. "Shredding also is a great way to dispose of unneeded paper in an environmentally friendly way, and I am happy to offer this service to my constituents." DeLissio said common types of unwanted items that should be shredded include credit card statements, credit card applications, bank statements, canceled checks, income tax information, insurance records and retirement or pension fund information. This is a rain or shine event, and all shredding will be done on site. Shredded paper will be recycled. For more information, constituents can call DeLissio’s office at 215-482-8726. Read more
HARRISBURG, April 20 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio (D-Montgomery/Phila.) held meaningful conversations on legislative issues with constituents during her recent “Policy Pow Wow,” held in her district office. The Pow-Wow format allows for a deep and balanced look at policy issues. About 20 people gathered April 12 for discussion on two subjects: Senate Bill 10, known as the Municipal Sanctuary and Federal Enforcement (SAFE) Act, which is related to the issue of sanctuary cities in Pennsylvania. Senate Bill 3, the Pain Capable/Dismemberment Legislation, one of the strictest abortion-ban laws in the country. “I was happy to hear from constituents interested in both of the subjects,” DeLissio said. “Those who attended were genuinely interested in understanding all points of view and understanding the process that has gotten the legislation to this point. My primary concern about the process is that no hearings were held in the Senate and no hearings are scheduled in the House on either of these bills. I’m glad I could host this event to help my constituents better understand what is happening in Harrisburg.” Several attendees said they appreciated the opportunity to listen, share and learn. “Conversation on these two topics was informative, lively and very timely,” said John Gray of Roxborough. Sara Stroman, from Manayunk, said, “I think these policy Pow Wows are fantastic and that Read more
Could we have avoided a #cluckfuster with a consolidation? My comments at Monday’s hearing of the House Committees of Aging and Health & Human Services on the consolidation of 4 Commonwealth agencies. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 13 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., participated in the PA Blue Ribbon Champion for Kids award ceremony April 5 in the Capitol to recognize Child Abuse Awareness Month. The PA Blue Ribbon Champion for Kids award recognizes those who have been instrumental in protecting children in the commonwealth with the goal of heightening awareness of the role each Pennsylvanian plays in safeguarding children from abuse and neglect. DeLissio had the honor of nominating one of the award recipients, Sarah Pesi, who was recognized for helping to craft and advocate for state legislation that expanded protection of abuse orders to cover people who are less than acquainted with their abusers. Before the legislation was signed into law in 2014, a PFA could only be applied to a relative or current/former intimate partner. Sarah, at age 12, was stalked and harassed by an adult coach while she was a youth referee and was shocked to learn that she could not file for a PFA under her circumstances. She spent her time researching other states’ laws and eventually was successful in lobbying the commonwealth to pass a law that covered her situation, and hundreds, if not thousands, of other Pennsylvanians’ circumstances. “Sarah is a remarkable young lady and when this nomination opportunity arose, she immediately came to mind,” said DeLissio, who met her through the Women and Girl’s Foundation’s Girl Gov Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 13 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., will hold a town hall meeting at 10 a.m. Thursday, April 27 in the Bala Cynwyd Library, 131 Old Lancaster Road in Bala Cynwyd. She will provide the latest information on legislation in Harrisburg and anecdotes to what takes place in the halls of the House. “If you are interested in the back story, understanding the process, and hearing what is happening without spin, join me for candid conversation about how what happens in Harrisburg impacts our daily lives here at home,” DeLissio said. Parking is available, free, in the library lot, and the library is on the SEPTA No. 9 and 65 bus routes. More information can be obtained by calling DeLissio’s office at (215) 482-8726. “I am always energized by speaking with constituents,” DeLissio said. “I look forward to hearing from those who participate because constituent input and feedback is important to me.” Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 7 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., co-hosted on Thursday a meeting on the issues relating to nuisance establishments that sell alcohol and how they impact surrounding blocks and neighborhoods. Both state and local government agencies were gathered to share their respective roles in combatting this issue. “This is an issue that has plagued Philadelphia neighborhoods for decades, and despite concerted community efforts it has been difficult, if not impossible, to get liquor licenses suspended or revoked,” DeLissio said. “The members of the Philadelphia Delegation of the PA House are conducting a series of these meetings across the city over the next few weeks. Delegation members will then compile and share all of the information and work to identify a meaningful pathway forward with the goal to ensure that liquor licenses are suspended or revoked timely when warranted.” DeLissio hosted a similar meeting in November 2015 on the topic, which, like Thursday's, included a broad array of city and state agencies that interact with establishments holding liquor licenses. This time, she said, there is a broader group of colleagues similarly engaged in the dialogue and she is hopeful that, at the very least, state and local agencies will work more cooperatively together, and if need be, local and state policy can be proposed to help ameliorate this plague. Among the testifiers were officers from Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 7 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., will host a “Policy Pow-Wow” from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 12 in her district office, 6511 Ridge Avenue, 19128. The Pow-Wow format is a deeper look at policy issues and includes a balanced look at the issues to be discussed. “When we did a series of three Pow-Wows in August, they were well received and constituents found them to be informative,” DeLissio said. The informal roundtable discussion will include S.B. 3, which is a legislative proposal to restrict abortion, and S.B. 10, which is legislation to address the issue of sanctuary cities in Pennsylvania. Space is limited, so RSVPs are requested, which can be made by calling 215-482-8726. DeLissio will host another Policy Pow-Wow at 7 p.m. Monday, May 15 to discuss the elimination of statute of limitations for sexual abuse of children and to talk about gun control. RSVP is requested and the location of discussion will be in her district office. “As I endeavor to continue my commitment to dialogue with constituents of the 194th Legislative District, I hope residents will find this format inviting and casual,” DeLissio said. “It is a pleasure sharing information with constituents, as well as learning from attendees.” The Policy Pow-Wows are BYOB - alcoholic or non-alcoholic. Light refreshments will be provided. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 7 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., stood up against the injustice of gender pay disparity on Equal Pay Day in the Capitol this week. Tuesday, April 4 was the symbolic day when a woman’s average salary catches up to a man’s average salary from the previous year. In Pennsylvania, women are paid on average 77 cents for every dollar a man makes, according to Census data. “It has reached the point in this country, that a woman who graduated from college in 2009 can expect to work three more years than her male counterpart to repay her student loans,” DeLissio said. “That is a shame, and we can do something about it.” DeLissio told WBCB 1490 AM news this week that she and her colleagues are working hard to advance core pieces of legislation that would set a course toward pay equality in the work place: House Bill 931 -- Would allow employees to inquire about wages and disclose information about wages by prohibiting retaliatory actions against workers who discuss or file a complaint regarding pay inequities. House Bill 830 -- Would increase fines for employers who are convicted of willfully violating law, falsifying records, or interfering with an investigation under this act from the current amount of $50 to $200 per day of violation to an updated amount of not less than $2,500 nor more than $5,000 per day of violation. Secondly, this legislation would increase the time Read more
PHILADELPHIA, April 7 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., voted Wednesday against H.B. 741, which would reinstate the practice of mandatory minimum sentencing in Pennsylvania. DeLissio said that she based her vote on documentation that demonstrates the use of mandatory minimums is ineffective and unfair in combatting crime and recidivism and costly to the state – data and facts confirmed by Pennsylvania Secretary of Corrections John E. Wetzel. Mandatory minimums also remove judicial discretion in sentencing. The objective of sentencing is to rehabilitate, deter, and punish accordingly. DeLissio said that determining the most appropriate sentence for an individual is complex and case-specific, and is therefore best addressed by judges familiar with the case, the defendant, and all of the relevant circumstances and information. DeLissio said many reports show that district attorneys do not consistently seek mandatory minimum sentences, even in cases where they are prescribed by law. The practice is used to leverage plea bargains, many times unfairly. “If the crime warrants a harsh sentence – which many do – then a judge is beholden to his or her duty to seek justice in those cases,” DeLissio said. “If a judge does not deliver on that duty, then he or she should seek another job, or voters can decide not to retain a judge for an additional term.” Analysis also shows that the part of H.B. 741 Read more
It was my pleasure to nominate Sarah Pesi for the inaugural PA Blue Ribbon Champion for Kids award. Yesterday, Sarah was honored as an award recipient.
The PA Blue Ribbon Champion for Kids award recognizes those who have been instrumental in protecting children in the commonwealth with the goal of heightening awareness of the role each Pennsylvanian plays in safeguarding children from abuse and neglect.
Sarah is a remarkable young lady and when this nomination opportunity arose, she immediately came to mind. My remarks share the story of what Sarah experienced and accomplished to earn this award. Read more
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