Latest News

DeLissio to host 104th Town Hall meeting virtually March 19

(3 hours ago)

PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 26 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio will host her 104 th Town Hall meeting virtually at 10:30 a.m. Friday, March 19. Topics will include information on the state constitutional amendment process including the one and possibly two amendments that will be on the ballot for the May 18 primary election and an update on the COVID-19 vaccine. The mail-in ballot process will also be reviewed. “My virtual town hall meetings have continued to draw new attendees, and I’m pleased to be able to share important information and updates for our community,” said DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila. “Ongoing dialogue with residents of my district is a priority for me, and these virtual events have proven a successful way to keep in touch.” The meeting will be held over Zoom and will also be livestreamed on DeLissio’s Facebook page . Anyone who wishes to participate through Zoom must register by 5 p.m. Thursday, March 18, using this link or by emailing RepDeLissio@pahouse.net . Zoom login information will then be sent. Comments or questions can be posted live or emailed in advance to RepDeLissio@pahouse.net or by leaving a message at 215-482-8726. This is DeLissio’s 1 2 th town hall held virtually since the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak and mitigation efforts necessitated different means to communicate and provide information. Previous town hall meetings can be viewed on Read more

Ciresi joins Gov. Wolf in Unveiling Bipartisan Charter School Accountability Plan to Protect All Students and Taxpayers

(7 hours ago)

“We owe it to our students, families, teachers, and taxpayers to fix a broken and out-of-date 25-year-old charter school law, with issues I’ve seen over 12 years as a school board member,” said Rep. Joe Ciresi. Read more

O’Mara reappointed to Public Higher Education Funding Commission

(Feb 23, 2021)

SPRINGFIELD, Feb. 23 – State Rep. Jennifer O’Mara, D-Delaware, today announced her reappointment to the state legislature’s Public Higher Education Funding Commission. The purpose of the commission is to review and make recommendations related to higher education funding, affordability and effectiveness, administration, and operations. O’Mara, who also organized the House Student Debt Caucus, will help develop a higher education funding formula for the 14 Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education universities and four state-related universities, which are Penn State, Pitt, Temple and Lincoln universities. Funding for the 18 higher education institutions will be determined on a case-by-case basis considering factors such as goals for higher education, virtual learning needs, graduation, retention and enrollment rates, student debt and financial aid, and any other factors related to higher education and the distribution of funding. The General Assembly would then need to authorize the proposed funding formula. “I’m honored to be reappointed to this commission and re-evaluate what higher education institutions need most right now as we continue recovering from COVID-19,” O’Mara said. “We faced unchartered territory in the last year that created countless hurdles in our higher education system. As we begin crafting our annual budget in Harrisburg, I’ll be able to bring these issues to the forefront of the Read more

Howard, Chancellor Greenstein to discuss PASSHE integration March 10

(Feb 23, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 23 – State Rep. Kristine Howard will hold a virtual event on the proposed integration of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education with Chancellor Daniel Greenstein from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. March 10 at www.RepKHoward.com . “The PASSHE system has offered high quality, higher education to Pennsylvanians for decades, but the rising cost of education has either closed the doors to higher education for many potential students or required others to incur high levels of debt,” Howard said. “The proposed merger of some universities in the PASSHE system promises to strengthen the organization, enabling it to continue to provide affordable, quality higher education to Pennsylvanians and their families for years to come .” PASSHE is exploring two possible mergers – the integration of the California-Clarion-Edinboro and the Bloomsburg-Lock Haven-Mansfield schools. Each combination would operate as a single accredited entity with a single leadership, faculty, enrollment management strategy, and budget while honoring local identity.? This month, Greenstein gave the integration progress report to the PASSHE Board of Governors at its meeting, and the b oard will give its response to the plans at its April meeting. If the plans are approved, they will be the focus of two public hearings and a 60-day public comment period. The b oard will review the comments and decide whether to give Read more

DeLissio appointed to Children’s Trust Fund board

(Feb 19, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 19 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., has been appointed to serve on the board of the Children’s Trust Fund for the 2021-22 legislative session. The mission of the Children’s Trust Fund is to prevent child abuse and neglect in Pennsylvania. “We as adults have no greater responsibility than keeping children safe. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to work with the Children’s Trust Fund to support community programs that protect kids and strengthen families,” DeLissio said. “I’ve long been committed to helping shape policies that are in the best interests of our citizens and our children are indeed cherished citizens. We have a collective responsibility to ensure that all children in the commonwealth thrive and have every opportunity to grow up in a safe and nurturing environment.” DeLissio was appointed to serve on the Children’s Trust Fund board by House Speaker Bryan Cutler. This legislative session, DeLissio was named minority chair of the House Children and Youth Committee, which reviews bills pertaining to the youngest citizens of Pennsylvania. Read more

Kirkland issues statement on COVID-19 vaccine rollout

(Feb 19, 2021)

“I’ve heard the frustration from residents of my district about the slow rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine. Many community members were excited about the potential of a new vaccine provider location supposed to open yesterday in Chester, only to be let down when no doses were available." Read more

Ciresi: Pharmacist-administered vaccinations must be covered by health insurers

(Feb 18, 2021)

“Now more than ever, it’s imperative we ensure affordable, potentially life-saving immunizations administered by pharmacists are covered by all health insurers.” Read more

Ciresi appointed to Special Education Funding Commission

(Feb 17, 2021)

The SEFC, which was established in 2013, reviews and makes recommendations regarding special education funding in the commonwealth. Its focus over the last two years has been reviewing the formula that directs state funding to school districts in Pennsylvania that have the greatest need for additional resources based upon the cost of each special education student. Read more

Shusterman authors legislation to bolster small businesses, reform state lobbying practices

(Feb 17, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 17 - State Rep. Melissa Shusterman introduced three pieces of legislation that would boost Pennsylvania’s economy and reform the commonwealth’s lobbying laws. Shusterman’s H.B. 267 would ensure that early and mid-stage businesses using the Second Stage Loan program create more job opportunities in Pennsylvania, and businesses that receive loan guarantees are not only located in Pennsylvania, but stay in Pennsylvania. “The Second Stage Loan Program provides vital assistance to help businesses grow and thrive, and we want to make sure we’re boosting Pennsylvania’s economy, too,” Shusterman said. “This bill would provide a stronger economy and create sustainable jobs in my district and around the state.” The Second Stage Loan Program is a loan guarantee administered by the Commonwealth Financing Authority that guaranteed loans made by commercial lending institutions to life science, advanced technology or manufacturing businesses. The program provides banks with an extra measure of security to encourage them to provide early-stage companies with working capital. Shusterman said that in order to receive a loan guarantee, her bill would require businesses to remain and conduct services within the commonwealth. Shusterman’s lobbying reform legislation, H.Bs. 268 and 269 , both currently await consideration in the House State Government Committee. House Bill 268 would institute a Read more

Mullery, Hanbidge introduce bill to improve overburdened unemployment compensation system

(Feb 17, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 17 -- In response to numerous Pennsylvanians reporting difficulties applying for and receiving unemployment benefits amid the COVID-19 pandemic, state Rep. Gerald Mullery, D-Luzerne, and state Rep. Liz Hanbidge, D-Montgomery, have introduced a bill to make critical improvements to PA’s Unemployment Compensation system. “There is no question that the COVID-19 pandemic has overburdened our UC system; however, that is unacceptable for the thousands of Pennsylvanians trying to make ends meet and put food on their tables,” Mullery said. “Our proposal would simplify some of the most common roadblocks folks applying for benefits say they are running into.” House Bill 549 would make the following changes to the UC Law: Permanently eliminate the “waiting week” that makes claimants ineligible for benefits during the first week of unemployment. Eliminate credit weeks from the process of verifying income, which too regularly causes delays in benefits and confusion amongst employers and claimants. Eliminate severance pay requirements to minimize the occurrence of claims being sent to UC examiners for review, which further delays claims processing. Streamline the Shared Work Program to help claimants access benefits in a timelier manner. Said Hanbidge: “This past year has created numerous, insurmountable challenges for families and the time for action is now to get people paid Read more