EAST FALLS NOW ARTICLE: It Is All About Representing

It is in the title. State Representative. The definition of representative is a person chosen to act or speak for others.

Being the State Representative for the 194th is a responsibility that I am honored to have, and I have the utmost respect for the responsibility which I have been given.

To that end, my commitment to dialogue with constituents is paramount, and my 93rd town hall is scheduled for March 30. In 2019, I initiated a book club that meets quarterly. Books are selected based on their relationship to state policy. The book club has attracted additional constituents that I had not previously met.

My commitment to personally attend at least two civic association meetings is another way that I interact with the community to hear what is on their mind, neighborhood by neighborhood. There are 13 civic associations in the district, and many of them meet on days I am in session in Harrisburg. However, my commitment to share with each of the civic associations is an endeavor I strive to uphold.

In 2010, when I first ran for election, I was asked a myriad of questions, a few that I remember to this day.

Two frequent questions:

“Was my job a volunteer position?” Answer: No.

“Was it in Washington?” No.

Many folks would tell me their concerns about city matters and problems related to city government, not state matters. Many citizens just want their needs met and are not concerned about different levels of government (local, state, federal), let alone different branches of government (executive, legislative and judicial); but the reality is that citizens must be informed and concerned about “how it works” if they want a truly representative form of government.

Constituents’ questions and concerns made me realize that many folks may wonder what the role of a state representative is, and possibly why anyone would love the role as much as I do.

My job is to represent you in Harrisburg and to represent, to the best of my ability, the diversity of thoughts and opinions that are reflective of the citizens in the 194th Legislative District.

State government affects our daily lives and the quality of those lives – everything from funding basic education and helping to ensure that we have a ready workforce to ensuring that our roads and bridges are safe and that our criminal code is administering true justice.

In order to represent your ideas, I need to be in touch with you on a regular basis, and I am indeed passionate about communication. Whether by email, newsletter, press release, town hall, social media, office appointments, policy round tables, the quarterly book club I hold or in the aisles of the local market or this monthly column, I always want to be in touch and to hear from you.

And that is probably what I like best about my job – listening to my constituents and disseminating information to my constituents and helping them to better understand the nuances of state government. I am a firm believer that knowledge is power, and I never hesitate to share knowledge.

These dialogues are important for both of us. We share ideas and opinions, ask questions to gain clarity, and I know I always walk away with more to think about on any number of topics.

It is truly an honor and privilege to represent and serve, and I have all of you to thank for that opportunity.

Speak Up and Stay Informed

Thoughts? Suggestions? Concerns? Make your voice heard by visiting my office at 6511 Ridge Ave., calling 215-482-8726 or emailing me at RepDeLissio@pahouse.net.

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