In this update:
Public workshop focuses on Third Class Cities in Pennsylvania and their economic health
The Senate Local Government Committee and Senate Majority Policy Committee held a joint public workshop with mayors and leaders of various Third Class Cities throughout our region, including York City Mayor Helfrich.
The workshop, chaired by my colleagues Senators Martin (R-Lancaster) and Argall (R-Schuylkill/Berks), focused on what the cities are doing well and any tools or resources they need to be more vibrant.
Most of the discussion highlighted the adverse impact of property taxes on local residents.
The Lancaster Online covered the public workshop and looked at a few key takeaways based on testimony. You can read their story here.
You can watch the event in its entirety below.
Questioning Governor Wolf’s veto of significant election reform and a path to pay for his unfunded mandate
Earlier this week, I voiced my disappointment about Governor Wolf’s veto of a bill that passed both the House and Senate with bipartisan support. The bill would have provided county elections officials with funding to pay for the majority of an unfunded mandate ordered by Governor Wolf to update all voting machines ahead of the 2020 Presidential Election.
The bill would have also eliminated a straight party voting in Pennsylvania. We are one of eight states that has straight party voting as an option on the ballot. The proposal to eliminate this option is sponsored by Senator Lisa Boscola (D-Lehigh/Northampton). When the bill was voted on in the Senate last month, it passed with bi-partisan support. I discuss why the governor had different ideas in an op-ed that you can read here.
$317 million deposited into the state’s Rainy Day Fund
Included in this year’s state budget package was a significant deposit into our state’s Rainy Day Fund. The Rainy Day Fund is a state savings account to be used during an economic downturn. There were many attempts to spend all of this money, but I and many of my colleagues believed this funding would be best utilized to insulate our state from any drastic (and costly) consequences in the event of another recession.
This week, state Treasurer Torsella officially deposited $317 million into the state’s Rainy Day Fund. The total balance of our state’s Rainy Day Fund is $340 million.
A large part of our state’s economic success is due to legislative efforts to curb spending requests of various governors. Fiscal responsibility is vital to the success of the Commonwealth.
Providing context to a recent violation of state Senate rules during ABC 27’s “This Week in Pennsylvania”
Last Sunday, I joined Dennis Owens, Abe Amoros and Chris Nicholas to discuss the recent events that unfolded on the Senate Floor in the last week of June.
We also discuss a bill the governor vetoed that would provide funding flor counties to purchase new voting machines that the governor ordered, and eliminate straight party voting options on ballots (we are one of eight states that allows straight party voting), which I outlined in my op-ed earlier in this email update.
Please take a few minutes to watch my interview and our discussion here.
Stocking Muskie with Rep. Gillespie in the Susquehanna River
On Monday, I had a great day on the Susquehanna River with Rep. Keith Gillespie (R-York) and leadership from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission!
Thanks to the commission for inviting us to help them stock Muskie along the Susquehanna in Wrightsville from the boat launch at John Wright Restaurant! It was great to see the feedback from so many anglers who did not know the commission stocked Muskie in the Susquehanna.
I am joining the commission for a similar event next week at Lake Marburg. Stay tuned!
Beware of fictitious callers regarding the Property Tax/Rent Rebate program
The Department of Revenue is warning Pennsylvanians to beware of a scam targeting Property Tax/Rent Rebate recipients.
Callers are claiming to be from the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue in order to seek bank account information to deposit rebate funds.
Please know that the department does NOT collect such info over the phone.
It’s best to never give out personal information from unsolicited callers, regardless of who they claim to represent.
For more information on this scam, please visit the department’s website here.
Congratulations to Curtis Dom of Troop 50 for achieving Eagle!
Congratulations to Curtis Dom of Troop 50 in Spry on achieving the rank of Eagle Scout! It was an honor to present him with a citation from the Senate of Pennsylvania.
Curtis, the son of Aaron and Janette Dom, cleaned out a closet and installed shelves, racks, clothing bars and totes at York Dance Expressions. He also installed a mailbox and acoustic paneling at the studio. Well done, Curtis!
Lively discussion on state issues with York’s Sophisticated Ladies Red Hat Group
Thank you to York’s Sophisticated Ladies Red Hat Group for the wonderful lunch and conversation about state issues on Tuesday!
I really appreciated their thoughtful insights and gracious hospitality! These conversations are critical in my role as state Senator to hear feedback on issues I am championing in the Senate.
New law protecting dogs in hot cars goes into effect – learn what you can do!
The Humane Society of Pennsylvania partnered with AAA to inform Pennsylvanians about a new law I supported to make sure our four-legged friends and family members are protected throughout this summer.
If you are traveling with your dog this summer, please know the dangers of leaving him or her in a hot car. While the temperature outside may be 80 degrees, it is 114 degrees inside an idle car after 30 minutes!
Below is a helpful guide put together by the Humane Society and AAA for your review to make sure all pets are protected this Summer. If you see a dog left behind in a hot car, please call 911.
YoCo Bloom Grants given to seven local businesses
Congratulations to the seven small businesses awarded a YoCo Bloom Grant today! Thanks for growing & investing in York! Does your small business want to apply for a grant? Contact the York County Economic Alliance.
To learn more about the seven downtown York businesses that were recently awarded grants, check out this article from the York Daily Record here.
Upcoming PennDOT projects
PennDOT has several projects planned throughout York County, including the following:
From July 15-18, weather permitting, York County PennDOT maintenance crews will remove the top two-inches of asphalt and resurface portions of the northbound and southbound Interstate 83 ramps at Exit 8 for Glen Rock. You can learn more about this project here.
Paving will start next week (July 14-15) between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. along Route 462, West Market Street ramp to eastbound U.S. 30. You can learn more about this project here.
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