Jul. 07, 2017

The Weekly Roundup
The latest news from the State Capitol
                          
State Budget Spending Plan Now on Governor’s Desk

With strong bipartisan support, the House sent to the governor a $32 billion budget that invests in key areas while also starting the process to reinvent state government by eliminating duplicative services and reducing overall costs to encourage reform and innovation.

House Bill 218 supports additional funding for schools, pension obligations and services for those with intellectual disabilities, but demands additional savings across state government agencies and programs, including Medicaid. The budget also shows savings from the shrinking prison population.

We’re now working on additional legislation to finalize the entire 2017-18 budget package.
                
         
Perry County Bridge to be Replaced

Construction for the new Route 850 (Fort Robinson Road) bridge, spanning Bixler Run in Northeast Madison Township is scheduled to begin the week of July 10 and be completed by mid-September. Drivers will be directed to follow a detour along Route 17, Airport Road and Route 274.

The project is part of PennDOT's Rapid Bridge Replacement Program, which includes 558 spans statewide.
                  
         
Protecting Veteran Integrity

Unscrupulous individuals who seek to benefit financially by falsely identifying themselves as veterans will face criminal penalties under legislation signed into law recently.

Act 9 of 2017, which takes effect in 60 days, seeks to protect the honor and valor of America’s veterans by making any misrepresentation of military service or honors for financial benefit a third-degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in prison and up to $2,500 in fines.

Examples of such criminal behavior range from lying to receive veteran or health care benefits to fraudulently obtaining preference in a government contract or a job reserved for a veteran. This new law is designed to help preserve the reputation of legitimate veterans.
                  
         
Saving Children and Pets from Hot Cars

Legislation is now before the House that seeks to protect children and pets that are left inside dangerously hot vehicles.

House Bill 1152 would provide civil immunity for any damage that may be done to a vehicle when forceful entry is necessary to rescue a child. The immunity only would apply when the person acts reasonably under the circumstances, has a good-faith belief that the child is in imminent danger and makes an effort to notify law enforcement.

House Bill 1216 is similar in that it would provide civil immunity to police officers, humane society police officers and firefighters for property damage resulting from forcibly entering a vehicle to rescue an animal.
                  
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