To keep you informed, I am highlighting recently introduced bills that I will be following closely. I broke them down into categories so you can find your specific interests. The short descriptions beside each bill are what the bill's sponsor has claimed.
If you click on the link for the bill number, you can find out more information about the bill. If you would like to advocate for the bill, follow the link, then click on the link for which committee the bill has been assigned to. This will bring up information about the chairs and other members of that committee, who you can contact and advocate for or against the bill.
- ensure Pennsylvanians have the right to request that a company confirm that it is processing a consumer’s personal data and allow the consumer to access the data, correct inaccuracies, delete personal data, and receive a copy of that personal data.
- require companies to establish, implement, and maintain reasonable administrative, technical and physical storage data security practices to protect the confidentiality, integrity, and accessibility of personal data.
- provide an accessible, clear and meaningful privacy notice that not only discloses what, if any, categories of personal data is shared with third parties, but also a consumer’s the right to opt out.
- require any company that discloses personal data to third parties to enter into a contract to ensure data privacy.
- require a company to conduct and document a data protection assessment to, at a minimum determine how the company collects, manages, and stores data. The Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General would have the right to request access to these reports.
HB2283 would ensure that Pennsylvanians will have inherent rights to the use and sale of their genetic material. Additionally, this bill will require any for-profit genetic testing company to acquire permission from the consumer before they can share this data with any third party. My bill will also ensure that consumers are adequately compensated for the use of their DNA.
HB2285 would include digital wallets in the Breach of Personal Information Notification Act. By doing so, we will ensure that Pennsylvanians are notified as soon as possible if their digital wallets have been hacked, and that they can begin to take steps to safeguard any other electronic data that may have been exposed due to the hack and can start the process of repairing any damage.
HB2215 would provide those who invest in qualified startup businesses with a 25% tax credit.
HB2280 would establish three types of tax incentive programs for the rehabilitation or reconstruction of certifiable factory or mill complexes. The first program provides a tax credit of 25% for the rehabilitation and reconstruction costs incurred by the owner. The second program is a business tax credit, which provides a tax credit equal to 100% of the total amount of Pennsylvania salaries and wages paid to qualified full-time employees, which has a maximum allowable credit of $5,000 per qualified employee. The final program is an interest income tax program, which permits a taxpayer to receive a tax credit of 10%, up to $10,000 per taxable year, of the tax liability for interest earned and paid on loans made to eligible businesses for expenditures within the building. The taxpayer is also allowed a tax credit of 100%, up to $20,000 per taxable year, of the qualified liability of the interest earned on loans made for the purpose of substantial rehabilitation.
HB2297 would establish the Disabled Veterans’ Real Estate Tax Exemption Amnesty Program. Under this program, disabled veterans who have applied and been approved for the real estate exemption program but have outstanding property taxes in the five years prior to enrolling would have the opportunity to have those liabilities forgiven if they would have otherwise been eligible for the exemption program during those years.
HB2217 would allow for early voting to start 30 days before an election and end on the day before Election Day. Early voting would take place at the county board of elections and at designated polling places chosen by the county board.
HB2218 would change the date of Pennsylvania’s presidential primary from the fourth Tuesday of April to the third Tuesday of March allowing our state primaries to be more impactful on selecting presidential candidates.
HB2248 would require county boards of elections to notify voters if their ballot signature does not match their signature on file. Boards must further direct voters to provide proof of their identity and an affirmation that they are the same individual who personally completed a mail-in or absentee ballot.
HB2261 would require that ballot questions be submitted to voters only during a general election and only every two years when there is a presidential or gubernatorial election.
HB2237 would create a COLA for retired police officers and firefighters.
HB2262 would extend the Commonwealth’s death benefit currently available to emergency responders to telecommunicators. The Emergency and Law Enforcement Death Benefits Act provides a state benefit of $100,000 (annually adjusted using the Consumer Price Index; currently $158,559.75) to emergency responders for deaths related to the performance of their duties.
HB2268 would allow a 17-year-old Junior Firefighter to attend and complete the Interior Firefighting Module with Live Burns and Vehicle Rescue Technician training programs in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Fire Training System (Community Colleges and County Training Centers). The Junior Firefighter would need to have the permission of their parent and Fire Chief. The Interior Firefighting Module would be required to be under the supervision of a credentialed state fire academy instructor. The Vehicle Rescue Technician training would be required to be under the supervision of a credentialed vehicle rescue technician instructor. Once the Junior Firefighter turns 18 years old, he/she would have the necessary training to be “interior qualified.”
HB2282 would allow emergency medical services (EMS) providers to deliver medical care to a patient in their own home or in a community setting. EMS providers, in consultation with a patient’s health care practitioner, would also be able to administer community paramedicine services such as health assessments, disease monitoring, and hospital follow-up care to patients.
HB2247 would establish the Pennsylvania Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program in the hopes that, by providing some financial relief to our teachers, we can fill in the rampant staffing gaps in our schools. Under this bill, qualifying teachers could receive up to $40,000 in loan forgiveness in exchange for serving in a Pennsylvania school for a minimum of four years.
HB2180 would amend the school code to require our schools to report the participation rate for students with exceptionalities in their extracurricular activities starting in grade 6. No personal information would be collected. This is to help us understand how far we have come in creating an inclusive environment for all our students to learn and grow in, and perhaps identify areas of concern that could be addressed either through state or local action.
HB2288 would expand the eligibility requirements for the Fostering Independence Tuition Waiver Program to include children who go into kinship care but would have otherwise been in the foster care system if their family did not step in.
HB2278 would clarify that applicants for licensure as a registered nurse or advanced practice nurse must have received education from an institution accredited by an agency approved by the U.S. Department of Education, which includes both national and regional accreditation agencies. Opening the Pennsylvania RN education market to nationally accredited institutions could bring added revenue to the Commonwealth and may increase nursing employment since nurses are likely to remain in the state where they attended school.
HB2244 would expand PennDOT’s Temporary Placard Issuance Program for Health Care Facilities. It would also provide that every qualified health care facility may distribute placards upon application to do so, as well as expand the definition of “health care providers” to include licensed occupational and physical therapists. The idea is for more specialists eligible to certify an individual’s disability so that they may qualify for a placard.
HB2317 would provide supplemental food funds to facilities already participating in the federal Child and Adult Care Food Program to allow them to better serve their enrollees, or, if the facility is a non-profit, stabilize their finances. If we are to make Pennsylvania’s economy as strong as it can be, it is crucial that everyone who wants to work, can work. We can only do this if we ensure care facilities are running smoothly. The Child and Adult Care Food Program is a federal program that reimburses care facilities for food they serve to needy enrollees. This program, while important, does not go far enough to alleviate the burden on facilities of the high cost of feeding enrollees.
HB2256 would codify the Office of Environmental Justice (OEJ) within the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Under this legislation, the OEJ would continue to advise state agencies on issues of environmental justice and make recommendations for policies to address the concerns of burdened communities across the Commonwealth. In addition, it would work with a task force on the implementation of an action plan aimed at strengthening environmental justice policies and awareness.
HB2287 would prevent any permanent custody changes while a servicemember is deployed for longer than 30 days. It will also ensure that visitation rights are protected during the deployment. Scheduled video calls and phone calls will be part of any temporary custody order, so our deployed military parents are able to see and hear their children.