GOP Appropriations chairmen optimistic about on-time budget

GOP Appropriations chairmen optimistic about on-time budget

As pension reform legislation is likely to wind up shortly in the legislative rearview mirror, all eyes will soon be turning into work on a state budget, which now only has 24 days remaining until the next fiscal year begins and a budget is set to be in place.

 

On Monday, The PLS Reporter caught up with House Appropriations Committee Majority Chairman Stan Saylor (R-York) and Senate Appropriations Committee Majority Chairman Pat Browne (R-Lehigh) for an update on where things stand.

Monday, June 5, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Senate Bill 1 begins advance through House

Senate Bill 1 begins advance through House

Senate Bill 1—the major pension reform bill making its way through the General Assembly—easily cleared the Senate by a vote of 40-9 Monday afternoon. Within only a few short hours, the legislation was quickly taken up by the House State Government Committee where it advanced to full House along bipartisan lines.

Monday, June 5, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Bill to put PWSA under PUC control pushes forward while the water authority temporarily halts its partial lead line replacement program

Bill to put PWSA under PUC control pushes forward while the water authority temporarily halts its partial lead line replacement program

The House Consumer Affairs Committee Monday advanced a proposal—House Bill 1490 introduced by House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-McCandless) and Rep. Harry Readshaw (D-Baldwin)—to place the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) under the oversight of the Public Utility Commission (PUC).

Citing the many issues facing the authority, including multi-million dollar debt, unmetered accounts, incorrect billing, system leaks, noncompliance with federal water quality mandates, and unidentified lead-contaminated water service lines, the lawmakers say those issues call into serious question the sustainability of PWSA and the health and safety of those served by the system. 

Monday, June 5, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
State legislation preempting municipal plastic bag regulation, taxation clears Senate committee

State legislation preempting municipal plastic bag regulation, taxation clears Senate committee

A House bill that cleared that chamber in late April cleared the Senate Finance Committee Monday morning along a party-line vote.

 

The bill, House Bill 1071, has been introduced by Rep. Frank Farry (R-Bucks) and Rep. Mike Hanna (D-Clinton), and is targeted toward municipalities that might be inclined to enact such regulations or fees on recyclable plastic bags typically used at grocery stores and other retail establishments and could potentially hurt the statewide economy.

Monday, June 5, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Health and Human Services consolidation proposal examined by House Democrats

Health and Human Services consolidation proposal examined by House Democrats

The House Democratic Policy committee held a hearing Monday morning to analyze the consolidation of the proposed Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

The Department of Health and Human Services would combine the existing Departments of Aging, Drug and Alcohol Programs, Health, and Human Services into the newly proposed department.

The consolidation efforts are headed by Gov. Tom Wolf in an effort to provide affordable healthcare to all and save funds for the coming and other future budget years, and—along with the consolidation of the Department of Corrections and Board of Probation and Parole—was accounted for in a House-Republican crafted spending plan.

Monday, June 5, 2017/Author: Kyle Maguire
Categories: News and Views
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