Representative Mike Turzai
28th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Stephen Miskin
RepTurzai.com / Facebook.com/RepTurzai / www.Twitter.com/SAM1963
TO: Capitol Correspondents, News Editors, Assignment Editors
FROM: Stephen Miskin
Press Secretary to the Majority Leader
SUBJ: House Action for the Week of March 31, 2014
DATE: March 28, 2014
Public Safety Leads House Agenda
The House returns to session on Monday, March 31. As always, House session and most committee meetings will stream live on PAHouseGOP.com. Many events also may be viewed on Facebook.com/PAHouseGOP.
Always working to protect public safety, the House will take up two bills this week aimed at reducing incidents of gun crime and violence in the Commonwealth.
House Bill 1091 (Rep. John Taylor, R-Philadelphia) would establish a new mandatory minimum sentence of two years for the violation of carrying an illegal firearm on public streets or public property in Philadelphia, and grades the offense as a third-degree felony. The measure is similar to an initiative instituted in New York City in 2005, where violent crime has been reduced overall and shootings have fallen to the lowest levels in nearly two decades.
House Bill 1243 (Rep. Todd Stephens, R-Montgomery County) would require the Pennsylvania State Police to send mental health data within 90 days to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is used to check the background of individuals attempting to acquire a firearm nationwide. The bill would additionally require ongoing submissions to the national database within 48 hours of the state police receiving mental health data.
House Bill 1498 (Stephens) would impose a five-year mandatory minimum sentence for felons who illegally and visibly possess a firearm or replica firearm which places the victim in reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury and designates such actions as a “crime of violence.”
Ensuring School Safety and Educational Opportunities Always Priorities
The House returns to the issue of ensuring safety in our schools by taking up House Bill 2063 (Rep. David Maloney, R-Berks County), which would require public and private schools in Pennsylvania and their independent contractors to conduct a thorough employment history review prior to offering employment to any applicant for a position involving direct contact with children.
Members will also consider a bill to reestablish the Governor’s Schools of Excellence. House Bill 2074 (Rep. Karen Boback, R-Columbia/Luzerne/Wyoming) would require a minimum of three Governor’s Schools of Excellence in science, agricultural science, and engineering and technology at institutions of higher education within the Commonwealth. The program was established originally in 1973 with a focus on the arts but was discontinued in 2009. However, Gov. Tom Corbett has proposed to allocate $350,000 for the program for the 2014-15 fiscal year.
The Weekly Schedule
Identified by bill number, the sponsors and summaries for bills scheduled to be considered in committee or on the House floor are posted below. More information regarding these bills can be found at PAHouseGOP.com by clicking on the “Research Bills” tab.
Monday, March 31, 2014
EDUCATION, 10 a.m., Room 140, Main Capitol
- Public hearing on HB 2124 (Rep. Seth Grove, R-York): Overhauls the Commonwealth’s public school construction reimbursement process.
JUDICIARY, 10 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
- Subcommittee on Crime and Corrections’ public hearing on drug courts and the heroin crisis.
HUMAN SERVICES, 11 a.m., Room 60, East Wing
- Public hearing on the federal “Olmstead Decision” and its impact on the intellectual disability waiting list.
COMMERCE, 11:30 a.m., Room 205, Ryan Office Building
- Informational meeting with an overview and discussion of the City Revitalization and Improvement Zone (CRIZ) program.
On Monday, the House will convene at 1 p.m. for legislative business. The members will vote the uncontested calendar and Rule 35 resolutions.
Votes on Second Consideration
- HB 1091 (Rep. John Taylor, R-Philadelphia): Establishes a new mandatory minimum sentence of two years for the violation of carrying an illegal firearm on public streets or public property in Philadelphia and grades the offense as a third-degree felony.
- HB 1163 (Rep. Ron Marsico, R-Dauphin): Establishes the offense of cyber harassment of a child and makes it a misdemeanor of the third degree.
- HB 1243 (Rep. Todd Stephens, R-Montgomery): Requires the Pennsylvania State Police to send all existing mental health data within 90 days to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) and requires ongoing submissions to NICS within 48 hours of the Pennsylvania State Police’s receipt of mental health data.
- HB 1498 (Rep. Todd Stephens, R-Montgomery): Imposes a five-year mandatory minimum sentence for felons who illegally possess firearms and designates the offense as a “crime of violence.”
- HB 1773 (Rep. Chris Ross, R-Chester): Amends the Municipalities Financial Recovery Act with extensive additions and editorial changes.
- HB 2081 (Rep. William Adolph, R-Delaware): Clarifies workers’ compensation coverage of maritime employees to eliminate requirement of dual coverage under both state and federal law.
- SB 33 (Sen. Bob Mensch, R-Bucks/Lehigh/Montgomery/Northampton): Provides protection from employment discrimination and employment termination for individuals who report suspected child abuse.
Votes on Third Consideration
- HB 1317 (Rep. Kevin Boyle, D-Philadelphia): Designates Philadelphia Prison System prisoner transport units as emergency vehicles, allowing them to use flashing lights and sirens.
- HB 1600 (Rep. Dick Stevenson, R-Butler/Mercer): Updates the Real Estate Appraisers Certification law to bring Pennsylvania into compliance with mandatory federal standards regarding appraiser qualifications.
Votes on Concurrence
- HB 316 (Rep. Julie Harhart, R-Lehigh/Northampton): Creates a funding mechanism for children’s advocacy centers and multidisciplinary investigative teams.
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
STATE GOVERNMENT, 9 a.m., Room 60, East Wing
- Public hearing on HR 701 (Rep. Mark Mustio, R-Allegheny): Encourages the state public pension fund fiduciaries to support protection of all pension fund members by embracing new technology capable of uncovering National Best Bid and Offer violations through forensic analysis.
EDUCATION, 9:30 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
- HB 1973 (Rep. Ryan Aument, R-Lancaster): Creates a Hybrid Learning Entrepreneurial Fund.
- HB 2013 (Rep. Jerry Stern, R-Blair): Allows a board of school directors’ vacancy to be filled by a qualified elector of the school district when a school board member is called to active duty in the military or naval forces.
- HB 2106 (Rep. Will Tallman, R-Adams/York): Brings the state statute regarding military recruiter access to school students into alignment with the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
- HR 637 (Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Philadelphia): Urges Congress to approve the United States House resolution to increase dyslexia awareness among schools and other educational agencies.
JUDICIARY/TRANSPORTATION, 10 a.m., Room 205, Ryan Office Building
- Joint informational meeting to discuss Pennsylvania DUI laws with Judge John Kennedy of the York County Court of Common Pleas.
On Tuesday the House will meet at 11 a.m. for legislative business.
Votes on Second Consideration
- HB 942 (Rep. Sandra Major, R-Susquehanna/Wayne/Wyoming): Addresses the recording and indexing of blanket lease assignments and mortgage assignments presented to recorders of deeds for filing and provides standards for recording documents.
- HB 1684 (Rep. Garth Everett, R-Lycoming): Clarifies that the deduction of post-production costs from unconventional shale gas wells may not result in royalty payments less than the guaranteed minimum.
- HB 2063 (Rep. David Maloney, R-Berks): Requires public and private schools in Pennsylvania and their independent contractors to conduct a thorough employment history review prior to offering employment to any applicant for a position involving direct contact with children.
- HB 2074 (Rep. Karen Boback, R-Columbia/Luzerne/Wyoming): Permanently re-establishes the Governor’s Schools of Excellence.
- SB 267 (Sen. Stewart Greenleaf, R-Bucks/Montgomery): Adds “educational” to the Public School Code’s list of valid excuses for being absent from school.
Votes on Third Consideration
- HB 1091 (Taylor, J.)
- HB 1163 (Marsico)
- HB 1243 (Stephens)
- HB 1498 (Stephens)
- HB 1773 (Ross)
- HB 2081 (Adolph)
- SB 33 (Mensch)
- HR 659 (Rep. Doyle Heffley, R-Carbon): Directs the Joint State Government Commission to establish a task force on opiate prescription drug proliferation in the Commonwealth.
Votes on Concurrence
- HB 974 (Rep. Rosemary Brown, R-Monroe/Pike): Requires public school entities to hold a public hearing and vote on whether to acquire automatic external defibrillators for school buildings.
Wednesday, April 2, 2014
VETERANS AFFAIRS AND EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS, 9:15 a.m., Room 205 Ryan Office Building
- HR 536 (Rep. Michele Brooks, R-Crawford/Lawrence/Mercer): Urges Congress and the federal Department of Veterans Affairs to consider authorizing and funding the use of service dogs for veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or other emotional traumas.
- HR 597 (Rep. Seth Grove, R-York): Urges the United States Army to reconsider the temporary suspension of the production of Bradley Fighting Vehicles at the BAE Systems Inc. facility in York, Pennsylvania.
- HR 663 (Rep. R. Lee James, R-Butler/Venango): Urges Congress to pass, and the president to sign, federal legislation adopting the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2013.
- HR 739 (Rep. Paul Clymer, R-Bucks): Urges the president and Congress to freeze any reduction of Army National Guard Troop strength and establish a national commission to review the structure of the Army.
CHILDREN AND YOUTH, 9:30 a.m., Room B-31, Main Capitol
- Informational meeting on Penn State’s Network on Child Protection and Well-Being.
INSURANCE, 9:30 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
- Informational meeting on HB 804 (Rep. Bryan Cutler, R-Lancaster): Enacts special liability protection for emergency physicians and emergency personnel by changing the standard of proof in judicial tort lawsuits.
TOURISM AND RECREATIONAL DEVELOPMENT, 9:30 a.m., Room 39, East Wing
- HB 1989 (Rep. Michael Hanna, D-Centre/Clinton): Designates the Piper J-3 Cub as the official state aircraft.
- HB 2083 (Rep. Jerry Stern, R-Blair): Enables the Department of Community and Economic Development to recapture unused film production tax credits from previous fiscal years so the credits can be reallocated.
LOCAL GOVERNMENT, 10:15 a.m., Room 205, Ryan Office Building
- HB 1903 (Rep. Mauree Gingrich, R-Lebanon): Standardizes the procedure for filling vacancies in the district attorney’s office in counties of the third through eighth class.
- HB 1904 (Rep. Mauree Gingrich, R-Lebanon): Specifies that procedures used to fill vacancies in the office of district attorney are applicable even if the municipality is home rule.
- HB 2089 (Rep. Kate Harper, R-Montgomery): Amends the First Class Township Code regarding property maintenance codes, reserved powers and the Uniform Construction Code.
- HB 2091 (Rep. Kate Harper, R-Montgomery): Amends the Second Class Township Code regarding property maintenance codes, reserved powers and the Uniform Construction Code.
LABOR AND INDUSTRY, Call of Chair, Room B-31, Main Capitol
- HB 1846 (Rep. Marguerite Quinn, R-Bucks): Regulates workers’ compensation reimbursement rates for pharmaceuticals and limits the practice of physician dispensing.
On Wednesday the House will meet at 11 a.m. for legislative business.
Votes on Third Consideration
- HB 942 (Major)
- HB 1684 (Everett)
- HB 2063 (Maloney)
- HB 2074 (Boback)
- SB 267 (Greenleaf)
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