In this Update:
Commonwealth Court Rules RGGI Energy Tax Violates PA Constitution
There was a significant victory for Pennsylvanians this week with the ruling issued by the Commonwealth Court affirming the RGGI Electricity Tax violates our state Constitution. PA Senate Republicans have been unwavering in our commitment to advocate for communities across our commonwealth who would be harmed by the RGGI Electricity Tax. At a time when families continue to feel the strain of inflationary pressure, we must look for ways to decrease, not increase, the cost of electricity. Click the photo above to watch my video about this important development.
The Commonwealth’s participation in RGGI may only be achieved through legislation duly enacted by the Pennsylvania General Assembly, and not merely through the rulemaking promulgated by DEP and EQB. Gov. Wolf’s decision in 2019 to unilaterally force Pennsylvania to join RGGI was a failed, harmful, and unconstitutional policy.
With this decision we have the opportunity to finally close a tumultuous chapter and move forward to determine the best legislative solution to foster greater energy independence, while ensuring the responsible development of our God-given natural resources.
Speaking at the PMA and PA Chamber Monthly Business Briefing
On Monday, I had the opportunity to speak during a joint business briefing held by the Pennsylvania Manufacturers’ Association and the Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry. While there certainly are challenges in Harrisburg with divided government, we have made some good progress over the last 10 months. I have been working with my colleagues to deliver commonsense policies and legislative initiatives for the benefit of communities throughout the commonwealth. You can watch this briefing by clicking on the photo above.
Westmoreland County Senior Expo
Thank you to all who attended and the vendors who provided information on their services and donated wonderful door prizes.
It was nice to see a few familiar faces and chat with folks!
Students Visit My Indiana Office
I appreciated a group of students from Calvary Baptist Academy stopping by my Indiana office during their recent field trip throughout the community.
These 1st through 4th graders had many thoughtful questions and good listening skills.
It’s always wonderful to see our youth engaged and interested in their government!
Town Hall Meeting in Washington Township
Thank you to all who participated in my Town Hall meeting in Washington Township, Westmoreland County. I greatly valued hearing concerns and thoughts on various issues that are impacting our local communities and state government. The opportunity to have a discussion like this, offers an important perspective as we work together to strengthen Pennsylvania.
A special thanks to Washington Township VFC for the hospitality and use of their facility.
Senate Passes Bill to Fight Opioid Epidemic
The Senate recently passed legislation aimed at keeping up with the rapid introduction of new drugs to commonwealth communities. It would be a significant step toward ensuring dangerous substances don’t slip through the cracks into our communities without being controlled.
Senate Bill 959 would enable faster prosecution by allowing Pennsylvania to automatically follow the federal government’s Drug Enforcement Administration classification for drugs. Drug traffickers constantly update these chemical compounds, and Pennsylvania scheduling has struggled with inefficiency. Automated scheduling will save the lives of our loved ones and more effectively fight the effects the opioid epidemic has on our communities.
As the bill would only apply to new controlled substances, it would not impact Pennsylvania’s scheduling of cannabis or its availability for medical marijuana patients.
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Grants Available to Organizations Benefitting Veteran Employment
To help veterans as they transition from serving our country to resuming civilian life, funding is available for organizations that connect veterans with jobs.
The grant opportunity is designed to assist veterans who have received a discharge other than dishonorable, members of the reserves and guard, and spouses of veterans and service members in securing employment.
Applications for the Veterans Employment Grant Program must be submitted by Wednesday, Nov. 15, at 4 p.m. Learn more and apply online here.
Funding to Improve Local Transportation and Pedestrian Safety
Grants are available to municipalities, businesses and other organizations to improve local transportation and pedestrian safety. The funding aims to ensure a safe and reliable system of transportation is available to Pennsylvania residents.
Funding for priority investments is available through the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s Multimodal Transportation Fund. Apply online by Monday, Nov. 13, at 4 p.m.
Turn Those Clocks Back This Weekend
Daylight saving time will end at 2 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 5, so Pennsylvania residents should turn their clocks back one hour before going to bed on Saturday night.
Biannual time changes can be a great reminder to check or change the batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms. Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms should be replaced every 10 years and located near bedrooms and on each level of the residence.
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