Bipartisan bill to end child marriage in Pa. sent to governor

(Apr 29, 2020)

HARRISBURG, April 29 – State Reps. Jesse Topper, R-Bedford/Fulton/Franklin, and Perry Warren, D-Bucks, announced that their legislation, which would prohibit marriage before the age of 18, unanimously passed the House today and is now on its way to the governor’s desk. “Simply put, House Bill 360 is a child protection measure. Child marriage typically involves a teenage girl, whose life hasn’t even begun, being forced or coerced into marrying an older man,” Topper said. “Some of the many stories I’ve heard from survivors of child marriage involve these girls becoming victims a second time. In these instances, they are modern day slaves in the human trafficking trade.” “With the abolition of child marriage, Pennsylvania is safeguarding its children,” Warren said. “This bill will help ensure the long-term health of children and improve their health and educational and job opportunities.” Warren added, “I am deeply gratified that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle in both chambers came together to protect Pennsylvania’s children, and special thanks to Representative Topper and Senator John Sabatina who worked so hard to raise awareness of this child protection issue in the legislature and throughout state.” Topper said studies have shown that a child who marries before 18 is often not in control of the decision, and a child under Read more


Women’s Health Caucus chairs ask Gov. Wolf to veto S.B. 857

(Apr 22, 2020)

The original intent of S.B. 857 was to expand the use of telemedicine; however, it is the view of the Women’s Health Caucus that the bill that passed the House and Senate mostly along party lines this week would be harmful to women’s health. Read more


Resolution by Hanbidge, Hohenstein urges U.S. Congress to act on legislation to cover hearing aid costs

(Apr 15, 2020)

In Pennsylvania, hearing aids are only required to be covered for Medicaid recipients under age 21, while all other populations in need of hearing assistance are forced to pay for hearing aids out of pocket, with the average cost being $2,300. Read more


Amazon is playing whack-a-mole with coronavirus price gouging and it’s harming Pennsylvanians | Opinion

(Apr 13, 2020)

When you need it to stay safe from a dangerous virus, it’s simply not right for companies to continue enabling people to prey on the emergency. These companies form the backbone of online retail and have an obligation to stop illegal price gouging now and put strong practices into place to stop it from happening in the future. Read more


Rep. Daley's response to Speaker Turzai's April 2 Inquirer column

(Apr 07, 2020)

Governor Wolf and Dr. Levine are not only battling COVID-19 without adequate reserves, they’re also doing so with an anemic general fund, a frustrating and now dangerous hallmark of your majority’s control. Read more


Kenyatta, Shusterman demand protections for gig economy workers in final federal COVID-19 recovery bill

(Mar 25, 2020)

HARRISBURG, March 25 – As a historic $2 trillion COVID-19 financial response legislation package struck a deal in Congress early Wednesday morning, state Reps. Malcolm Kenyatta and Melissa Shusterman today introduced a resolution urging federal lawmakers to ensure unemployment compensation for the nation’s 57 million independent contractors and “gig” economy workers (or app based independent contractors) is included in the final financial aid legislation aimed at helping workers during the coronavirus crisis. “These employees comprise over a third of the country’s working population and remain among the most critically under-protected workers, with many not qualifying for unemployment benefits. During this pandemic, they were left with the terrible ultimatum of continuing to work to make ends meet or do their part in reducing spreading the virus by staying home. Many have chosen the latter, resulting in loss of income at alarming rates and the prospect of recouping those losses is uncertain,” Kenyatta, D-Phila., said. “We’re demanding that all independent contractors are protected in any final package.” Shusterman, D-Chester, concurred with Kenyatta’s assertion saying, “It is important that we help this sector of our work population navigate this crisis with immediate relief and action.” Kenyatta said that a copy of the resolution would also be sent to President Donald Trump and Vice Read more


Gov. Wolf, Sec. of Health Outline COVID-19 Mitigation Guidance for Montgomery County, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

(Mar 12, 2020)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 12, 2020 Gov. Wolf, Sec. of Health Outline COVID-19 Mitigation Guidance for Montgomery County, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Governor and Secretary of Health Take Aggressive Action to Stop Spread Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine this afternoon provided an update on the state’s COVID-19 mitigation efforts, including one new presumptive positive case in Pike County, bringing the state’s total to 22, and guidance on how to reduce the spread of the virus. “In Montgomery County, we are aggressively moving to a mitigation phase, and statewide we are providing guidance to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus,” said Gov. Wolf. The governor provided applicable guidance to reduce the spread of the virus in the state over the next 14 days, specifically for commonwealth facilities and public buildings in Montgomery County, which with 13 cases has the most presumptive positive cases in the state. Guidance for Montgomery County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Applicability The following guidance will be in place starting tomorrow, March 13, for fourteen days. We will evaluate our options throughout that period, and continue to communicate to you as we learn more. Montgomery County A no visitor policy will be implemented for correctional facilities, nursing homes, and others to be evaluated. Schools Read more


Reps. Rozzi, Bullock cancel ‘Homeless Youth’ rally out of concern for COVID-19 pandemic

(Mar 12, 2020)

State Reps. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, and Donna Bullock, D-Philadelphia, have canceled their rally and press conference scheduled for Monday. The purpose of the rally and press conference was to raise awareness and call for action to help Pennsylvania’s rising number of homeless youth. “Representative Rozzi and I decided to cancel Monday’s event out of an overabundance of caution,” Bullock said. “Individuals from around the region and state were expected to travel to Harrisburg to attend the event. We hope to reschedule this event when the risk of spreading this contagious virus has been lowered.” Bullock and Rozzi are directing all residents to monitor the Pennsylvania Department of Health for the latest updates. Rozzi added: “This event was to focus attention on the growing crisis of youth homelessness in our hometowns all across the state. Now, more than ever -- with schools, churches and public places closing their doors – homeless youth are at risk. Many have no access to meet basic needs like food, shelter and health care, and they depend on these institutions to provide services.” “Our offices are asking all residents, when you stock up on needed items at the store, like nonperishable goods or hygiene and cleaning supplies, to please remember the less fortunate people that are struggling in all of our communities,” Rozzi said. Bullock Read more


Sanchez, Kenyatta discuss legislation about reporting lost or stolen firearms

(Mar 10, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, March 10 – State Reps. Ben Sanchez, D-Montgomery, and Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., on Monday co-hosted a news conference at St. Paul’s Baptist Church in Kenyatta’s 181 st Legislative District to urge the General Assembly to vote on legislation about reporting lost or stolen firearms. “ We’re standing in the epicenter of the gun violence epidemic. It’s right here in North Philly – my community – where countless lives have been taken by guns, particularly guns that have been lost or stolen only to resurface in the hands of dangerous people,” Kenyatta said. “Today, we’re demanding our state legislature to stop ignoring this critical piece of legislation and to stop putting special interests and petty partisanship over what truly matters – lives.” Sanchez reintroduced H.B. 1288 in April – it was first introduced as H.B. 1515 by former state Rep. Madeleine Dean, D-Montgomery, during the 2013-14 legislative session – to require any owner or other person lawfully in possession of a firearm who suffers the loss or theft of a weapon to report it to law enforcement within 72 hours of the discovery. A failure to do so would result in a summary offense. Bearing the same language, the bill was reintroduced as H.B. 832 during the 2014-15 legislative session and again in the 2016-17 session. To date, the bill has been introduced five times. “This Read more


Malagari to host Policy Committee hearing on volunteer firefighters and EMS

(Mar 06, 2020)

MONTGOMERY , March 6 – State Rep. Steve Malagari, D-Montgomery, today announced that the House Democratic Policy Committee will be hosting a public hearing on volunteer firefighters and EMS. The hearing will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 10 at Hatfield Township Building, 1950 School Road, Hatfield, PA 19440. Media and the public are invited to attend. Malagari requested the hearing to help facilitate solutions for shortages of volunteers for public servants and volunteers such as firefighters and EMS that can lead to saving lives. He continues to push for additional grants and funding for these organizations to assist in equipment purchases, debt reduction and training. After the hearing is over, legislators will be on-site to answer questions from the media. The current agenda is: 2 p.m. Welcome and Opening Remarks 2:10 p.m. Panel of Local Fire Companies and EMS: Jerry Guretse , president, Telford Volunteer Fire Co. Debbie Wellington , treasurer, North Penn Good Will Services Marv McKown , president, Tylersport Volunteer Fire Co. Jim Gallagher , president, Perseverance Volunteer Fire Co. 3 p.m. Closing Remarks ### Read more


Davidson, Kirkland, O'Mara announce grant for Delaware County Historical Society

(Mar 05, 2020)

Delaware County state Reps. Margo Davidson, Jennifer O’Mara and Brian Kirkland today announced a grant has been approved for the Delaware County Historical Society for $4,000 through the Cultural and Historical Support Grant Program. Read more


School safety grants awarded around Montgomery County

(Feb 26, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 26 – Montgomery County state representatives today announced school safety and security grants awarded to school districts throughout the county. The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency’s School Safety and Security Committee awarded a total of $53.7 million in school safety grants. Montgomery County awards are as follows: Abington School District: $455,550 Agora Cyber Charter School: $143,226 Cheltenham Township School District: $45,000 Colonial School District: $45,000 Hatboro-Horsham School District: $45,000 Jenkintown School District: $30,000 Lower Merion School District: $45,000 Lower Moreland Township School District: $40,000 Methacton School District: $221,370 Norristown Area School District: $467,756 North Montco Technical Career Center: $150,000 North Penn School District: $45,000 Perkiomen Valley School District: $45,000 Pottsgrove School District: $40,000 Pottstown School District: $490,000 Souderton Area School District: $460,437 Springfield Township School District: $40,000 Spring-Ford Area School District: $45,000 Upper Dublin School District: $45,000 Upper Merion Area School District: $45,000 Upper Moreland School District: $40,000 Upper Perkiomen School District: $40,000 Western Montgomery Career & Technology Center: $72,994 Wissahickon School District: $45,000 Below are reactions from Democratic state Read more


Daley helps promote Highway Safety Law Awareness Week

(Feb 14, 2020)

“The health and safety of vulnerable highway users is clearly of critical importance, which is why we just passed H.B. 1536 by an overwhelming majority,” Daley said. “I’m grateful to PennDOT for highlighting other crucial laws that are designed to make our roadways safer for everybody, and I’m happy to help promote the message.” Read more


Gov. Wolf’s commitment to pipeline safety is good news for Chester County

(Feb 07, 2020)

With pipelines crisscrossing my district, I was very happy to hear Gov. Wolf include pipeline safety and oversight initiatives in his 2020-21 budget plan. Pipeline safety and accountability are enormous concerns in Chester County, and I have worked to ensure those concerns are heard in Harrisburg. In addition to meetings with Energy Transfer Partners, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, and the Public Utility Commission, I also met with Gov. Wolf multiple times to discuss my concerns – and those of my constituents – regarding this issue. Additionally, at my invitation, the governor visited Chester County to tour pipeline sights. The seeds of these meetings bore fruit this past week, as evidenced in the governor’s budget address. The governor has displayed a deeper insight in these matters, and I am very enthusiastic about his prioritization of pipeline issues and his call for immediate legislative action to address glaring gaps in existing law: As it stands, no state agency has authority to review intrastate pipeline routes, essentially allowing pipeline operators to site through densely populated high-consequence areas. Pipeline operators are not currently required to provide pertinent information to schools and childcare centers located near pipelines. Operators are not required to provide residents and municipalities with notification regarding drilling activities at least five days in Read more


Southeast Delegation elects Malagari treasurer

(Feb 05, 2020)

The House Democratic Southeast Delegation today elected state Rep. Steve Malagari, D-Montgomery, treasurer. Read more


Wolf highlights Sanchez gun safety bill in budget address

(Feb 05, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 4 – Gov. Tom Wolf highlighted state Rep. Ben Sanchez’s bill requiring gun owners to report lost or stolen firearms in his budget address today as part of his plan to reduce gun violence in the Commonwealth. Sanchez’s H.B. 1288 would require any owner or other person lawfully in possession of a firearm who suffers the loss or theft of a weapon to report it to law enforcement within 72 hours of the discovery. If a person fails to do so, he or she could be charged with a summary offense. “I’m pleased that Governor Wolf singled out my commonsense gun safety bill, which would require stronger reporting requirements for lost and stolen firearms and help keep guns off the streets,” said Sanchez, D-Montgomery. “The bill would deter gun trafficking by making firearm owners more accountable for their weapons and make our communities safer for all of us.” If H.B. 1288 becomes law, Pennsylvania would join a growing list of other states such as Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island and the District of Columbia that require the reporting of lost or stolen firearms. Sanchez’s bill previously was introduced by former state Rep. Madeline Dean, and has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee. Read more