In this update:
Prioritizing the state’s IT future under the Office of Information Technology
The Senate of Pennsylvania acted this week on a series of bills aimed at improving our state’s information technology and prioritize cybersecurity across all of state government, which are detailed below.
Legislation was approved by the Senate that would create the new “Office of Information Technology” and require cybersecurity best practices across state agencies. Under the measure, the Office of Administration would house the Office of Information Technology (OIT). The role of the OIT would be to establish a strategic plan for future IT projects across state government, as well as manage and maintain all future IT procurement within state agencies.
The state’s information technology total spend amount equates to the fourth largest state agency with more than $1.2 billion expended every year. We know our reliance on technology will only continue to grow and this forward-thinking effort prioritizes our state’s IT with a vision toward the future, as well as will put in place protocols to best protect the sensitive data state agencies store.
You can read more about this legislation here.
Senate advances legislation to prohibit taxpayer funds from paying ransomware attacks
My legislation that prohibits taxpayer dollars at the state and local levels from paying for ransomware attacks received the approval of the Senate of Pennsylvania this week.
We have seen an increase in ransomware attacks in governmental entities at all levels, as well as against critical infrastructure across the United States.
This bill defines ransomware and imposes significant penalties on the act of possessing, using, developing, selling or threatening to use ransomware in Pennsylvania. Governmental entities are also able to sue criminals and recoup legal fees under the legislation.
The bill would also require the state’s Office of Administration to provide annual reports on the number of ransomware attacks on state agencies, as well as implement best practices across all agencies to mitigate impacts of potential ransomware attacks in state government.
You can read more about my legislation here.
Victims of data breaches with state agencies would be provided with timely notifications under recently approved Senate bill
After multiple stories about the data breach within the unemployment compensation system, and victims not officially notified by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, the Senate approved legislation that would require victims of a data breach with state agencies to be notified within seven days.
The legislation also requires third-party entities that contract with the state to also provide notification of a breach of personal information. This was included in the legislation after the Department of Health, and their third-party vendor tasked with COVID-19 contact tracing – Insight Global – had personal health care information exposed on publicly accessible websites. Victims were notified through the media and not by the department or Insight Global.
The bill ensures that victims are notified in a timely manner. You can read more about this legislation here.
Celebrating Chief Tony Myers and 36 years of service to southern York County
Last week, we celebrated the retirement of Shrewsbury Volunteer Fire Company’s Chief Tony Myers, who capped off an incredible 36-years of service to southern York County communities.
Chief Myers originally began his tenure as Chief of the Shrewsbury Volunteer Fire Company in August of 1985. Chief Myers also served a lieutenant with the Baltimore County Fire Department from 1982 through 2010. He has persevered and protected the health, safety and welfare of his fellow York Countians.
We are grateful for the more than three decades of volunteer service of Chief Myers and wish him well in his much-deserved retirement. Thanks again, Chief!
FestivICE highlights future of York County Trail Towns
FestivICE returned for its eighth year and second year partnering with the York County Trail Towns Program.
I joined the leadership from the York County Economic Alliance and Northern Central Railway to outline the state’s ongoing commitment to York County Trail Towns. The Trail Towns Program continues to ignite opportunity in several communities by leveraging our treasured amenity – the Heritage Rail Trail – and other outdoor recreational assets we have throughout York County.
We continue to see the growth and expansion of this program that lifts our communities and the small businesses along the trail. Thank you to all of the local sponsors that supported this year’s FestivICE!
Reminder: Please take my latest survey on proposed constitutional amendments
My latest legislative survey is seeking YOUR feedback on various proposed constitutional amendments included in Senate Bill 106. The issues range from enacting a voter identification requirement to addressing the growth of executive orders over the last several years. If you have an opinion, please take a few minutes, and share your thoughts with me here. If you have friends or neighbors who reside in the 28th District, please forward the survey to them, as well!
I appreciate as many comments as possible on this critical issue.
Take my survey here.
If you missed my latest podcast episode, Sen. Ryan Aument and I sat down to discuss a few of the proposed constitutional amendments included in Senate Bill 106. Sen. Aument is the sponsor of these proposed changes. You can listen to our conversation here. Subscribe to my podcast and listen to past episodes here.
Local job openings
PA CareerLink shared with me its latest list of local job openings, which you can view below. You can also find job postings shared with the York County Economic Alliance here.
The Senate of Pennsylvania reconvenes for voting on Monday, January 24, at 1 p.m. You can watch session live and review our agenda at SenatorKristin.com/session.
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