Senator Pittman E-Newsletter

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In this Update:

  • Family Sustaining Jobs and Customer Affordability Key to PA Electricity Policy
  • Indiana Office Window Display
  • Westmoreland County Association of Township Supervisors
  • Transportation Roundtable Meeting
  • Student Government Seminar with Senator Hutchinson
  • Senate Finishes Review of Shapiro’s Budget Proposal
  • PennDOT Shares Roadwork Info with Motorists
  • Protect Your Family from Dangerous Radon
  • Help is Available for Problem Gambling
  • Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Family Sustaining Jobs and Customer Affordability Key to PA Electricity Policy

Comprehensive energy policy remains at the forefront of our legislative focus for the commonwealth. The best way to swiftly advance meaningful discussions around energy policy is for Gov. Josh Shapiro to remove the anvil of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and drop his appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Detrimental job losses and increased electricity costs imposed directly on consumers necessitates immediately closing the chapter of RGGI.

It now appears the governor agrees with the Commonwealth Court’s ruling asserting a cap-and-trade program for electric generation is a tax on electricity and would require legislative approval. The governor correctly points out it is time we stop losing to Ohio; however, any cap-and-trade program applying solely to electric generation in Pennsylvania and not our competitors, does not fit the bill.

Families are feeling the strain of inflation and increased household expenses, which must be a chief concern when implementing any changes to energy policy. Pennsylvania needs to put electric generation, grid reliability and consumer affordability first, and our Pennsylvania Senate Republican Majority will continue to focus on initiatives to promote investment and innovation here in Pennsylvania.

Indiana Office Window Display

Students from the graphics and electronic media and digital communications programs at the Indiana County Technology Center (ICTC) recently designed a new display for one of the windows at my Indiana District office. The display highlights the offerings of the ICTC and several current students. I have already had several people stop by the office requesting more information about current ICTC offerings in response to the display.

Mrs. Melaney Brubaker instructs the ICTC digital communications program and Mr. Jon Krecota is the graphics and electronic media instructor. Thanks to these individuals and all the faculty and students who stepped up to help make this wonderful display.

Pictured with me from left to right are Kelly Fox, ICTC school counselor, Cyndi Loveridge, Brooke Esposito, Siera Shirley, Johanna Welch, Brianna Harris, Catherine Akers, Elizabeth Dillon, Avery Orr and Emilia Campisano.

Westmoreland County Association of Township Supervisors

I was pleased to participate this week in the legislative roundtable portion of the 113th Annual Convention of the Westmoreland County Association of Township Supervisors.

It was good to see many familiar faces and a few new folks as well. I appreciated the thoughtful dialogue about area priorities, and the perspectives on how we can better help our local communities. Thank you for inviting me to take part in this important discussion!

Transportation Roundtable Meeting

I recently joined fellow Senate and House colleagues for a visit to the Swank Construction offices located in Westmoreland Business and Research Park in Westmoreland County. Swank was largely responsible for the design and construction of the new Fern Hollow Bridge in Pittsburgh, following the January 2022 collapse.

We discussed the importance of public-private partnerships, working together to be efficient with critical transportation dollars, completing projects in a timely manner along with a few other transportation-related topics.

Joining me from left to right are Bob Latham, Associated Pennsylvania Constructors; Rep. Jill Cooper; Rep. Jim Struzzi; Andrew Swank, CEO of Swank Construction; Jim Minor, CFO of Swank Construction; and Sen. Jay Costa.

Student Government Seminar with Senator Hutchinson

I recently had the pleasure of participating in Sen. Scott Hutchinson’s Student Government Seminar held at Penn Western University in Clarion.

The day provided high school students the opportunity to serve as members of the General Assembly for a day and develop, debate and vote on legislation while interacting with elected officials, legislative staff and government relations individuals. I enjoyed the engaging discussions and debate with the students.

Senate Finishes Review of Shapiro’s Budget Proposal

The Senate Appropriations Committee finished the last of its review of Gov. Josh Shapiro’s budget proposal, which totals more than $48.3 billion and would increase state spending by 7.1% above the current year’s budget. The governor’s proposal would completely drain the state’s savings and relies on income and spending estimates that are unrealistic.

The Department of Revenue and Governor’s Budget Office hearing focused on the report issued by the non-partisan Independent Fiscal Office that indicates a $24 billion gap between Shapiro’s spending plans and the revenue the state expects to collect in the next five years. These projections show it will be all but impossible to balance budgets in the next five years without deep spending cuts and massive tax increases.

At the Department of Health hearing, the committee questioned why – as with other departments – the budget shows level funding over five years, which denies legislators the information to accurately assess the ultimate impact on taxpayers. Shapiro proposed spending $4 million to pay the medical debt of certain Pennsylvanians, and members asked for details about how the money will be distributed and if the program will necessitate additional staffing.

Having completed the official review of Shapiro’s budget proposal, the Senate will use its findings from the hearings to craft its own spending plan, with the goal of enacting a final 2024-25 state budget. Find video and recaps of every budget hearing at

PennDOT Shares Roadwork Info with Motorists

As the weather improves, there will be more roadwork. To inform motorists about construction projects that are underway, beginning this year or being bid, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation offers an informational portal.

It has a mapping application for highway and bridge projects that allows users to obtain information about roadwork projects.

For travel information, visit or call 5-1-1. 511PA is Pennsylvania’s official travel information service, which provides travelers with reliable, current traffic and weather information, as well as links to other transportation services.

Protect Your Family from Dangerous Radon

Radon is an odorless, invisible, radioactive gas that can enter your home from the ground through cracks in the foundation. It increases cancer risks and is the second leading cause of lung cancer.

Pennsylvania has one of the most serious radon problems in the country. Approximately 40% of Pennsylvania homes have radon levels above the Environmental Protection Agency’s action guideline.

Find information how to test your home’s radon level and find certified radon mitigation contractors here.

Help is Available for Problem Gambling

Problem Gambling Awareness Month, observed in March, promotes prevention, treatment and recovery services.

Sadly, hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians experience gambling-related problems, including family, financial, legal and emotional issues. Gambling problems can be mild or very serious, and can worsen with time.

Individuals seeking treatment for compulsive or problem gambling can call Pennsylvania’s helpline at 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) to connect with local help. People can also text 1-800-522-4700 or live chat.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Saint Patrick, who lived in the fifth century, is the patron saint of Ireland and was credited with bringing Christianity to the country.

Even though the Irish have observed St. Patrick’s Day as a religious holiday for more than 1,000 years, the first St. Patrick’s Day parade actually took place in America. Records show the first parade was held on March 17, 1601, in a Spanish colony in what is now St. Augustine, Fla.

“May your troubles be less and your blessings be more, and nothing but happiness come through your door.” – Irish blessing


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