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Philadelphia elected officials call for state, local reform of community-police relationships

The Latest Push to Legalize Pot in Pennsylvania

(Feb 19, 2019)

Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor has embarked on a so-called listening tour across the state to hear people’s thoughts on legalizing recreation marijuana. Opponents say legalizing recreation weed will negatively impact society. Proponents, though, argue that legalizing the drug will not only positively affect people of color who are disproportionately arrested for possession of pot, but will also generate millions in tax revenue. Read more


Bipartisanship is passé. No one told Jordan Harris.

(Feb 11, 2019)

Holding up fingers on just one hand, Jordan Harris can trace back the generations to when his ancestors were enslaved.Belle, the Philadelphia representative’s great-great-great grandmother, was a slave. Mary Phillips, his great-great grandmother, and Ola Wallace, his great- grandmother, were both domestic workers. Read more


Examining Gov. Wolf’s Proposed Budget

(Feb 10, 2019)

Rep. Harris sits down with Rosemary Connors of NBC 10 to discuss Gov. Wolf's budget proposal. Read more


Harris Commends Wolf's Stance on Criminal Justice Reform

(Feb 07, 2019)

In response to Gov. Tom Wolf’s budget, Pa. House Democratic Whip Jordan Harris is commending his dedication to criminal justice reform and investment in our children’s future. Read more


Free college? It would be possible under new Pennsylvania Promise legislation

(Jan 31, 2019)

Pennsylvania legislators are again pitching a proposal to make college free for many low- and middle-income students.On Wednesday, lawmakers reintroduced the Pennsylvania Promise Act, which would create a grant program to cover up to four years of tuition at a state-owned or state-related university or a community college for students with a household income of $110,000 or less. For students whose families earn $48,000 or less, room and board also would be included. Read more


Harris: Pennsylvania Promise provides elevator out of poverty

(Jan 30, 2019)

Citing the negative statistics regarding higher education in Pennsylvania, state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., House Democratic Whip, today joined fellow legislators and advocates to announce the reintroduction of the Pennsylvania Promise initiative in the Capitol Media Center. “The cost of a college education has risen exponentially over the past twenty years, with averages across the country more than tripling,” Harris said. “Over that same time, wages have not grown at nearly the same pace, making a college education unattainable for too many Pennsylvanians.” Read more


Get free assistance with your Property Tax/Rent Rebate

(Jan 24, 2019)

Forms for Pennsylvania’s Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program for the 2018 tax year are available – and my office staff is ready to help you file yours for free ! The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians 65 or older, widows and widowers 50 or older, and people with disabilities 18 or older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters. Half of Social Security income is excluded and the maximum standard rebate is $650. Claimants must reapply for rebates every year because they are based on annual income and property taxes or rent paid each year. Spouses, personal representatives or estates may file rebate claims on behalf of deceased claimants who lived at least one day in 2018 and meet all other eligibility criteria. The rebates normally are distributed by the Department of Revenue beginning July 1. So, the sooner you file, the sooner you will receive your money. Read more


Lawmakers look to reform criminal justice system

(Jan 23, 2019)

Pennsylvania lawmakers have formed a new caucus that will look for ways to reform the state's criminal justice system.State Reps. Jordan Harris (D-Philadelphia) and Sheryl Delozier (R-Cumberland) teamed up to form the criminal justice reform caucus the day after Governor Tom Wolf laid out proposed changes in his second inaugural address last week. Read more


Harris, Delozier team up to form Criminal Justice Reform Caucus

(Jan 21, 2019)

Citing the successful passage of several pieces of bipartisan criminal justice reform legislation signed into law during the 2017-18 legislative session, state Reps. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., and Sheryl Delozier, R-Cumberland, last week announced the organization of a bipartisan, bicameral Criminal Justice Reform Caucus to focus on further reforms within the criminal justice system. Read more


Harris Stands Behind New Plan to Put Philly Families First

(Jan 17, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Jordan Harris joined his colleagues with the Philadelphia House Delegation to unveil a new comprehensive plan that addresses poverty, tackles criminal justice reform, and puts Philadelphia families first. Read more


Philadelphia Delegation announces its legislative platform for 2019-20

(Jan 16, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 16 – State Rep. Jason Dawkins, chairman of the Philadelphia House Delegation, along with delegation members today announced their legislative agenda during a news conference at the state Capitol. The delegation said its top priorities for working toward a better Philadelphia include investing in education and schools, criminal justice reform, health care for all, strengthening commercial coordinators, and alternative energy methods. "We are joining forces to work as one unit for the betterment of all Philadelphians, and that begins with fighting for what our constituents need the most,” Dawkins said. "We are also focused on making sure that everyone gets a fair shot and equal treatment." “Last session we worked in bipartisan fashion to get clean slate legislation signed into law and bring real criminal justice reform to those who need it,” said Rep. Jordan Harris, the Democratic Whip. “Now, we must continue fighting for further reform to reduce recidivism and allow Pennsylvanians who have paid their debit to society to pursue a productive path to citizenry.” “For too long our criminal justice system has been an injustice system for the mentally ill, the poor, and people of color,” said Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta. “While we’ve made progress, our prisons remain overcrowded, inmates mistreated, and mental health problems ignored. I stand with my Philadelphia colleagues to address Read more


Harris, Donatucci praise opening of Rowhouse Grocery in Point Breeze

(Jan 11, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 11 – State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., joined state Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila., in praising the opening of a new grocery store in the Point Breeze section of Philadelphia to help an underserved community access affordable, healthy food options. “The opening of this store is truly welcoming news. The city is overwhelmed with food deserts and for people who live in these areas, they may not have the means to travel to get access to fresh foods and produce,” Donatucci said. “I applaud Rowhouse Grocery for providing healthy options in this community.” “This grocery store comes in at a time when there’s more focus than ever before on healthy eating, yet many of our constituents simply don’t have access to the fresh fruits, vegetables and meats they need,” Harris said. “If the products aren’t accessible or affordable to the people we represent, then they simply don’t exist to them. I hope that Rowhouse Grocery gives an opportunity for people to explore meals that are nutritious, yet still affordable.” A food desert is defined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a location without easy access to fresh, health and affordable foods. People who live in food deserts tend to consume foods that are higher in cholesterol, sugar and fat. Rowhouse Grocery is located at 1713 McKean St. in the Point Breeze neighborhood of Philadelphia. Sections of Point Breeze are represented by Read more


Harris names deputy whips for 2019-20 legislative session

(Jan 09, 2019)

State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., today named Rep. Austin Davis, D-Allegheny, Rep. Tina Davis, D-Bucks, Rep. Pam DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., Rep. Marty Flynn, D-Lackawanna, Rep. Patty Kim, D-Dauphin, and Rep. Pam Snyder, D-Greene, as deputy whips for the 2019-20 legislative session. Read more


PLBC statement on Mummer’s Parade

(Jan 03, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 3 – Members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus released the following statements after seeing reports of racist behavior at the Mummer’s Parade: “The issue we are seeing here is a history of controversial characters and portrayals,” said state Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila, chairman of the PLBC. “The actions of those involved was intended as a form of comedy, but many viewers on the outside of the event believe it was in poor taste. We want to work on educating the public about how these actions can affect those around them, and how we might be able to better work for the future by working together on this parade as a whole community. The PLBC will continue our fight against acts of racism and fight for non-discriminatory legislation that updates the laws to help combat racism and racist behavior. Even if we cannot defeat it altogether, we should have better laws in place to discourage hateful practices and better educate the public.” “It doesn’t matter if it’s blackface or a black face, racial insensitivity has no place in Philadelphia,” said state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., former chairman of the PLBC and House Democratic Whip. “Sadly, this Parade has a tradition of racial insensitivity at best and racism at worst. It’s high time the sponsors and all others involved take a deliberate look at the messages being put forth by the parade. I look forward to joining other Read more


Harris sworn in for fourth term as state representative

(Jan 01, 2019)

During a ceremony at the state Capitol to open the 203rd legislative session, state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., took the oath of office to begin his fourth term in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and first term as the Democratic whip. “I’m honored to have my constituents’ trust to remain their state representative for another two years,” Harris said. “I will continue to stand up for the voiceless and the powerless while expanding on the work that my staff and I accomplished for the 186th Legislative District.” Read more


Harris Recaps 2018 Accomplishments

(Dec 28, 2018)

Pa. House Democratic Whip Jordan Harris recaps major victories in 2018 involving criminal justice reform, gun violence safety, and community improvements. Read more


Harris names Bizzarro, Solomon chief deputy whips, Bullock assistant whip

(Dec 28, 2018)

State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., announced today that he has named state Reps. Ryan Bizzarro, D-Erie, and Jared Solomon, D-Phila., as chief deputy whips and state Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila., as his assistant whip for the 2019-20 legislative session. Read more


Rep. Harris Holds Bicycle Giveaway

(Dec 27, 2018)

PA State Rep. Jordan Harris provided bicycles and smiles at his Bike 186th Giveaway. This is the 6th year that Rep. Harris has held this event in his community. In that time he has given more than 1200 neighborhood children the gift of a bicycle for Christmas. Read more


Taking Clean Slate Nationwide as First Step

(Dec 03, 2018)

Host and KYW Newsradio community affairs reporter Cherri Gregg asks the burning questions about the First Step Act, a criminal justice reform bill supported by President Donald Trump. Jordan Harris, Pa. State Rep- 186th Dist., Jules Epstein, law professor at Temple University and Sameerah Shabazz, policy director at Ardella's House walk us through the issues from a local perspective. Read more


Harris works to take clean slate movement nationwide

(Nov 16, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 16 – This week, state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., attended two roundtable events with the Center for American Progress to announce the launch of a national bipartisan clean slate campaign. On Thursday, Harris joined the group to discuss how automated record-cleaning would help to reverse both the immediate and long-term consequences that criminal records impose on future education, employment and housing opportunities. “So many people have done what was legally required of them, but have been unable to become fully productive citizens again,” Harris said. “Taking this movement nationwide will improve the economy, create jobs and provide hope to those who had a criminal conviction from decades past and have turned their lives around.” Today, Harris joined the group for a discussion on how to harness technology to close the second-chance gap without legislation. Harris said this campaign seeks to undo the effects of one-sided policy that has been in place across the country for decades. Currently, one in three Americans has a criminal record and is subject to 50,000 potential restrictions on jobs, housing, credit and other basics. These events come one month after Harris lauded Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Delaware, for introducing H.R. 6677 , which would automatically seal a person’s federal record if they have been convicted of a nonviolent offense under Read more