Capitol Quick Hits for 4.20.15

Capitol Quick Hits for 4.20.15

Here are the highlights from news conferences, rallies, and advocacy days held in the Capitol today:

  • Lt. Gov. Mike Stack was joined by legislators and advocates in the Capitol Rotunda this morning to raise awareness about autism spectrum disorder. Lt. Gov. Stack noted that the governor has declared April as Autism Awareness month as recognition of the challenges faced by those with autism and their families.
  • Volunteers with the American Heart Association from across Pennsylvania met in the Capitol Rotunda to advocate for legislation that would add a hands-only, 30 minute CPR training program to the state education curriculum for high school students.
  • Reps. Jake Wheatley (D-Allegheny) and Stephen Kinsey (D-Philadelphia) each honored a musician from their respective cities today in the Capitol Media Center in recognition of National Jazz Month.
  • The Humane Society of Pennsylvania organized an animal welfare rally on the Capitol steps with Sen. Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery) as the opening speaker and Sen. Pat Browne (R-Lehigh) receiving an award for his efforts to protect animal welfare.
  • The PA Coalition against Domestic Violence held an Advocacy Day to urge legislators to support state funding.
  • The Crime Victims Alliance of PA held their annual rally to commemorate National Victims Rights Week in the Main Rotunda.
  • Rep. Dan Frankel (D-Allegheny) held a press conference in the Governor’s Reception Room to recognize April 16, 2015 as “Holocaust Remembrance Day” in Pennsylvania in commemoration of the millions of innocent victims of Nazi atrocities.
  • The Pennsylvania State Nurses Association (PSNA) held a Legislative Day press conference in the Main Rotunda with the theme “The Nurse Hero.” The theme recognizes nurses who take heroic action every day.
  • As part of its 2015 Immigrant Advocacy Day, the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition (PICC) today discussed the issues affecting immigrants and refugees living in the commonwealth and outlined the agenda for the year. 

Monday, April 20, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Event Central
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House Democrats sound off on budget, property tax reform

House Democrats sound off on budget, property tax reform

House Democrats are already chalking up a win in their column for this budget cycle: Being included in the process.

“The good news is, unlike the last four years, House Democrats have been meeting with the governor,” said Minority Leader Frank Dermody (D-Allegheny). “That’s a welcomed change and it’s going well.”

He also said the caucus leadership is excited to see Rep. Stan Saylor’s (R-York) property tax legislation get a committee vote this week as it puts a vehicle in place to input common-ground findings on the issue.

“It’s an indication and a sign that we can hopefully find some common ground on the property tax issue and the rest of the budget issues,” he stated. 

Monday, April 20, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Inside SCI-Camp Hill: Part 1

Inside SCI-Camp Hill: Part 1

The PLS Reporter Goes Inside SCI-Camp Hill's Mental Health Units

The PLS Reporter recently took a tour inside SCI-Camp Hill's mental health units and, over the next week, will present a three part series detailing what it's like at the prison and what these facilities do to help mentally ill offenders.

In this first part, we go through R-Block, the reception unit of SCI-Camp Hill, where new offenders starting their journey through the state corrections process go through to be evaluated and tested.

Monday, April 20, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Senator questions Acting PSP commissioner’s law enforcement certification

Senator questions Acting PSP commissioner’s law enforcement certification

Sen. Lisa Baker (R-Luzerne) sent a letter to Acting State Police Commissioner Col. Marcus Brown Wednesday asking him to verify his training and certification related to the ability to carry a firearm and exercise law enforcement powers in Pennsylvania.

According to Sen. Baker, after meeting with Col. Brown as part of the confirmation process, it was left with her unclear as to whether or not he met the standards for service recognized by the Municipal Police Officer’s Education and Training Commission (MPOETC).

“I think if you’re using arrest powers, it’s an important question we need to clarify,” she told The PLS Reporter about why she sent the letter.

Thursday, April 16, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Committee hears differing views on internet gaming

Committee hears differing views on internet gaming

Talked about as a potential revenue source, the House Gaming Oversight Committee held a public hearing Thursday on the positive points and concerns on legalizing and regulating internet gaming in Pennsylvania.

“What we’re trying to do is…let’s look at the whole thing,” committee Majority Chairman John Payne (R-Dauphin) told The PLS Reporter. “Let’s look at internet, let’s look at fantasy sports, what else do casinos want. How can we help that business in Pennsylvania grow and stay competitive.”

Thursday, April 16, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
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