Senator Phillips-Hill E-Newsletter

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In this update:

  • Bipartisan Effort in Senate to Combat Sexual Harassment in State Government
  • Honoring Veterans
  • York County Sisters Recognized for Their National Miss Agriculture Titles
  • Christmastime in Loganville is Tomorrow – Open House From 9 to 3
  • Act 26 of 2023 Upholds William Penn’s Founding Principles
  • Senate Advances Key Education, School Safety Budget Priorities
  • Greater Transparency, Funding for State-Related Universities Approved by Senate
  • Betsy’s Bookshelf, Now Open!
  • Cheers to 40 Years of the Collage Shop
  • Tax Revenues and PIT Collections Above Monthly Estimate
  • Loans Available for Businesses Creating and Retaining Jobs
  • Protect Yourself with Free Weekly Credit Reports
  • Recognizing National Child Safety and Protection Month
  • Upcoming Thanksgiving holiday office hours

Bipartisan Effort in Senate to Combat Sexual Harassment in State Government

I joined Senate President Pro Tempore Kim Ward and Sens. Tracy Pennycuick and Maria Collett to unveil our bipartisan legislation to address matters of sexual harassment in the workplace within all branches of state government.

The measures come after Gov. Shapiro’s top staffer was accused of sexual harassment but remained in his position of power until a few weeks ago when he resigned. The media uncovered that the claims were serious enough to warrant a $295,000 settlement.

The Pennsylvania Treasury indicated the payments to both accuser and the accuser’s attorneys will be paid out this week, which you can read more about here.

The first bill would require state agencies and the General Assembly to use a third-party to investigate all sexual harassment claims submitted by an employee. The second bill would require public posting of monetary nondisclosure agreements due to sexual harassment or misconduct claim by an employee in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.

Read more about our bipartisan effort here.

Honoring Veterans

Veterans were honored across York County this weekend in celebration of Veterans Day. I was able to participate in several events honoring those who have served our nation.

As I shared last week, I was able to interview United States Navy WWII Veteran Harold ‘Sandy’ Harper at the New Freedom Recreation Council Veterans Day Dinner. Sandy said he signed up for the Navy because “his country needed him.” Thank you, Mr. Harper. We are the grateful beneficiaries of your service! You can find more photos of this event here.

The York County Department of Veteran Affairs held its annual celebration where I was able to present a Senate Citation commemorating U.S. Army Veteran Jeff Hines on receiving the George H. Eyler Meritorious Service Award. In the words of keynote speaker Major General Kurt Ryan (USA-Ret), “the Veteran is the glue that holds us together as a nation.” You can find more photos from this event here.

I was honored to share the gratitude of our community with our Veterans at the Dallastown American Legion. You can find more photos from this event here

Again, we can never say thank you enough to the brave women and men who served our country. We are incredibly grateful for your service and your sacrifice.

York County Sisters Recognized for Their National Miss Agriculture Titles

This week, it was my pleasure to host both the 2023 National Junior Miss Agriculture USA and the 2023 National Petite Miss Agriculture USA in the PA state Capitol! Both are southern York County residents and happen to be sisters!

Macie Rogers was crowned as the 2023 National Junior Miss Agriculture USA and BrookeAnna Rogers was crowned at 2023 National Petite Miss Agriculture USA.

They competed in the categories of interview, introduction, agriculture wear, formal wear, impromptu questions, prepared speeches, photogenic and essay to win their national titles. Congratulations again, Macie and BrookeAnna!

Christmastime in Loganville is Tomorrow – Open House From 9 to 3

Tomorrow (Saturday, Nov. 18) I will host an open house at our district office located at 6872 Susquehanna Trail South in Springfield Township. Our office will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

The open house is part of Christmastime in Loganville. Several local businesses and nonprofits are also hosting events in our area. You can learn more about other participants here.

If you are in the area, please stop by for some light refreshments, view a train display that will delight children of all ages, and enter a giveaway for this year’s state Capitol Christmas tree ornament! 

Act 26 of 2023 Upholds William Penn’s Founding Principles 

William Penn envisioned a Commonwealth where people of all faiths could freely worship how they saw fit without persecution or prosecution. In the early 1900s, the KKK fought to add provisions to state laws that would punish Catholic teachers who wore a necklace with a cross in the classroom.

Up until now, that law remained on our books. In fact, a teacher was suspended without pay for wearing a necklace with a cross in the classroom. She was not mandating her students follow her Christian faith, she was simply displaying her own faith, which is a core tenant of our First Amendment rights and the same vision Penn shared for our state. We have seen other lawsuits attempted against teachers who wear a star of David or other emblems displaying their faith.

Subsequently, every other state that added this prohibition to their laws a century ago has rightfully repealed the law, with Nebraska being the most recent state six years ago.

I think if William Penn was watching our work – two lawmakers of two different faiths – working together across the aisle with faith-based groups to repeal this law – he would be proud.

Pennsylvania was founded on religious toleration and the signing of Senate Bill 84, now Act 26, is a testament to Penn’s vision. Learn more here.

Senate Advances Key Education, School Safety Budget Priorities

The Senate approved budget implementation language by a vote of 45-5 that will drive out critical funding to schools and present a more streamlined approach to school safety.

House Bill 301 allocates funding for several critical priorities that were included in the 2023-24 state budget, including:

  • An additional $150 million for education tax credits to provide scholarships to students through the existing Education Improvement Tax Credit and Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit programs.
  • $14.5 million in funding for career and technical schools.
  • $295 million for Ready-to-Learn Block Grants.
  • More than $261 million for community colleges.
  • More than $76 million in special education funding for intermediate units.
  • $10 million to create a new Educator Pipeline Support Grant Program to provide grants to student teachers.
  • More than $70 million in state aid to public libraries.
  • $7 million to assist distressed schools.

The bill would also ensure greater collaboration in keeping children safe in the classroom by consolidating school safety programs and operations under the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD), which currently manages the highly successful School Safety and Security Grant Program created by Senate Republicans in 2018.

Learn more about other ways the bill helps students and schools here. Unfortunately, House Democrats gutted key provisions of this measure, including an effort to help students trapped in failing schools. House Republicans tried to bring up and advance the Senate-passed version but lost on a party-line vote.

Greater Transparency, Funding for State-Related Universities Approved by Senate

The Senate approved House Bill 1556, which would require greater transparency from state-related universities. The bill would ensure the institutions provide additional information in its annual Right-to-Know Law filing, including information related to contracts, financial statements, faculty, compensation, enrollment, courses and meeting minutes. Thank you to Rep. Kate Klunk for spearheading this effort!

The legislature also approved and the governor signed into law funding for the state-related universities, including an increase for Penn College of Technology. I recently toured Penn College of Technology to see the pipeline they have from education to family-sustaining careers. York County is home to many Penn College of Technology graduates, who work tirelessly for our local employers in skilled and specialized positions that are desperately needed in today’s economy. The return on investment for those students is incredible as they stay in Pennsylvania, work for Pennsylvania-based companies, fill major needs within our workforce, pay taxes, and raise a family in our community.

According to existing law, funding in the bill is directed to provide tuition discounts for in-state students, and universities are required to meet strict financial reporting requirements as a condition of receiving the money.

Betsy’s Bookshelf, Now Open! 

Congratulations to Betsy’s Bookshelf on its official ribbon cutting! I am so glad my team was able to join in the celebration while I was in session at the state Capitol.

Betsy’s Bookshelf has great options for all readers. You only pay half of the cover price on any book on the shelves, including newest releases and trending shelves! You can also earn store credit by trading in your pre-loved books.

Cheers to 40 Years of the Collage Shop

Congratulations to my dear friend, Whitney Morgan, on celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Collage Shop! While the Collage Shop was established in 1983, Whitney has owned and operated it since July of 2009 and truly made it an integral part of the York community.

The boutique offers fashion, home décor, gifts and other products, but they also stay active in the community supporting a variety of organizations. Cheers to 40 years and best wishes for the future!

Tax Revenues and PIT Collections Above Monthly Estimate

Each month, the Senate Appropriations Committee prepares an update about the state’s financial health. The most recent report shows that General Fund tax revenues were $118.6 million, or 3.9%, above the monthly estimate. However, total General Fund revenue collections for the first four months of the fiscal year are still below estimate by $47.5 million.

Personal Income Tax collections exceeded October’s estimate by $35.6 million, or 2.8%, but remain below estimate for the fiscal year by $77 million, or 1.5%.

The full update, including the monthly revenue report, is available here.

Loans Available for Businesses Creating and Retaining Jobs

Low-interest loans and lines of credit are available to eligible businesses that commit to creating and retaining full-time jobs and for the development of industrial parks and multi-tenant facilities.

The money can be used for land and building acquisitions, machinery and equipment purchases, working capital and accounts receivable lines of credit, multi-tenant facility projects and industrial park projects.

Learn more and apply online here.

Protect Yourself with Free Weekly Credit Reports

The three national credit reporting agencies – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion – permanently extended a program allowing you to check your credit report at each agency once a week for free.

Visit to request free copies of your credit reports. Other sites may charge you or be fraudulent sites set up to steal your personal information.

By reviewing your credit report, you can easily discover if information has been mistakenly reported about you or if someone opened credit in your name. Reporting mistakes and identity theft can help you build a strong credit score that will benefit you when you need to borrow money, secure a rental home and even apply for a job.

Recognizing National Child Safety and Protection Month

National Child Safety and Protection Month is dedicated to recognizing the dangers children may face and taking steps to prevent those challenges.

We have passed bills to provide child identification kits to parents to help identify and return missing children and to allow parents to surrender their unharmed baby at participating urgent care centers.

Other bills would protect them on their way to school by increasing penalties for drivers who refuse to stop for school buses and extending and revamping the school bus stop arm automated enforcement program.

Upcoming Thanksgiving holiday office hours

Please be advised of our office hours next week for the Thanksgiving holiday:

Monday, Nov. 20: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Nov. 21: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Nov. 22: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Thursday, Nov. 23: Closed – Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, Nov. 24: Closed

Saturday, Nov. 25: Shop Your Local Small Businesses!

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