FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
State Rep. Scott Conklin
Conklin offers methods to reduce size of legislature
HARRISBURG, April 3 – Centre County state Rep. Scott Conklin said he authored two amendments to a bill (H.B. 153) that would reduce the Legislature by 50 members. The chamber is currently comprised of 203 members and, under the bill, would be reduced to 153 members.
Conklin said one of his proposals would effectively reduce the state House by 50 members by outlining specific districts to be eliminated under the jurisdiction of the Legislative Reapportionment Commission.
"It's gut-check time," Conklin said. "If supporters of this bill are serious about real reform, this is the perfect opportunity to stand up for your district, put your name out there and put your numbers on the line. I did."
Conklin's amendment was defeated by a vote of 42-150. Only six of the bill's co-sponsors voted in favor of his amendment.
Reducing the Legislature would require changing the state's constitution. The bill would have to be passed in two consecutive legislative sessions of the General Assembly and be approved by Pennsylvania voters through a referendum.
"This is about running our state as a business more efficiently and effectively," Conklin said. "I have been pounding the pavement on these issues and I see this as another opportunity to prove I'm ready to lead from the front or push from behind."
Conklin also authored an amendment calling for a state constitutional convention. The most recent Pennsylvania constitutional convention was held Dec. 1, 1967 through Feb. 28, 1968.
"A constitutional convention is the most important reform this Commonwealth could undertake at this time," Conklin said. "The people of Pennsylvania have the right to have their voice be heard.
"A constitutional convention would allow us to tackle trimming the General Assembly and other fundamental reforms."