FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
State Rep. Bill Kortz
Kortz in Harrisburg, joins with protestors of session cancelation
HARRISBURG, Nov. 8 – In a show of defiance against House leaders, State Rep. Bill Kortz, D-Allegheny, and more than 80 of his colleagues, Democrats and Republicans, arrived for work today on the floor of the state House prepared to vote on important legislation for the people of Pennsylvania.
On Friday, members were informed by House leaders that all remaining voting days were canceled.
After reporting to the floor, Kortz joined two dozen other Democratic representatives at a news conference urging the House speaker to restore the opportunity for additional votes.
"There are a number of bills that are ready for a concurrence vote that have been fully vetted, especially the pension bill that will help avert a crisis for our public schools and taxpayers," Kortz said. "Specific to the 38th District is Senate Bill 441, which has new language addressing the recent unconstitutional ruling by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court regarding the 2007 School Code. At risk are 195 Duquesne high school students, now attending both West Mifflin and East Allegheny high schools, who deserve to know where they will finish high school.
"There are several other worthy bills that have been crafted over a number of years and could be one vote from enactment. The governor has publicly requested we return to session.
"When we recessed in October, it was understood that the House was coming back to finish things like pension reform after the election. Well, the election has occurred and the outcome is known. Nothing else has changed; we still need to act on these bills. The leaders dictating that we walk away at this time is unacceptable to me. I'm here, ready to do my job and vote."
Following the news conference, House Democratic leaders announced that members will meet in caucus Tuesday morning.
Kortz said the caucus is a good sign, but he is not optimistic about the outcome.