View in browser

Welcome to "Mike's Memo," an update on what's happening in the 48th Legislative District, the State Capitol, and the progress of my legislative priorities. If you haven't done so already, please take a few moments to visit my website at to learn more about issues that may affect you and your family.

Week of October 19, 2015

PCADV Commemoration to Domestic Violence Victims
In honor of October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV) held their annual commemoration to the domestic violence victims killed in the past year in Pennsylvania. Unfortunately, over 100 victims were killed in the past year, including some in the 48th Senatorial District.

I took part in the commemoration by reading the following victims’ names:
Stacey Pennington, Allison Vaughn, Ameyanna Sanchez, Kelley Jo Snyder, Nuria Kudlach, Andrea Roberts and Ellen Jackson.

Misinformation on Senate Bill 971 from Campaign for Liberty
I can’t express how disappointed I am with the Campaign for Liberty which claims my Senate Bill 971 (the Fourth Amendment Protection Act) “authorizes the arming of police drones with weapons.” SB 971 does no such thing.

Section 4, “Permitted use” establishes a drone moratorium to July 1, 2017, with some exceptions taken from other state laws: emergencies or major disasters, Amber alerts, searches and rescue operations “to protect life, health or property.” Since weaponized drones are already flying over American airspace, failure to advance any measure to restrict their use over private property will result in their continued use and proliferation.

I am working to take a stand against the use of drones – including armed drones. I would have been happy to work with Campaign for Liberty to clarify the language in SB 971. Rather, they chose to claim these provisions “authorizes the arming of police drones with weapons” and “allows for armed drones in Pennsylvania.” Again, SB 971 does no such thing. Too bad Campaign for Liberty didn’t give me the courtesy of a phone call. Such bombast is difficult to fathom, which has shaken my confidence in their ability to be honest brokers of information.

Senate State Government and Finance Committees Joint Public Hearing
The Senate State Government Committee, which I chair, and Senate Finance Committee, chaired by Senator Eichelberger, held the second joint public hearing to assess state government expenditures and programs. Video and testimony can be seen here.

Bills Pass Senate, Go to House
All bills passed unanimously unless otherwise noted.
Senate Bill 296 – (47-2) increases penalties for “Swatting” (making false reports to public safety agencies);
Senate Bill 501 – (26-23) “Mary’s Law,” which limits government entities from collecting political and PAC moneys on behalf of private organizations (also “paycheck protection”);
Senate Bill 648 – establishes separate snowmobile and all-terrain vehicle funds;
Senate Bill 748 – eliminates mandatory Pennsylvania State Police escorts of super-sized load vehicles and replaces them with certified pilot escorts;
Senate Bill 772 – updates the Professional Psychologists Practice Act;
Senate Bill 791 – amends the Second Class Township Code providing for removal of elected officers who fail to perform their duties;
House Bill 239 – amends the County Pension Law relating to supplemental benefits.

Bills Pass Senate, Go to Governor for Further Action
Senate Bill 925 – CDL permit and license updates;
House Bill 904 – amends the First Class Township Code relating to property maintenance codes;
House Bill 906 – amends the First Class Township Code relating to removal of elected officers who fail to perform their duties;
House Bill 910 – amends Act 35 of 1953 relating to removal of elected officers who fail to perform their duties.

Bills Signed into Law by Governor
Senate Bill 513 – Act 45 – allows transportation of residual waste;
Senate Bill 875 – Act 47 – promotes the beneficial use of treated mine water;
House Bill 33 – Act 42 – amends the Municipalities Planning Code to allow appointment of municipal residents to serve as alternate members on planning commissions;
House Bill 75 – Act 43 – requires pharmacies outside Pennsylvania to register with the State Board of Pharmacy to fill prescriptions for Commonwealth residents;
House Bill 315 – Act 44 – allows minors to be employed as youth sports officials.

Congressman Ryan Costello Lebanon Community Office Hours
Congressman Ryan Costello will hold community office hours in my Lebanon District Office (Room 101 Municipal Building, 400 South 8th Street, Lebanon) from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the following dates: Tuesday, October 20; Tuesday, November 17; Tuesday, December 1, and; Tuesday, December 15. Any questions can be directed to Congressman Costello’s Wyomissing office at (610) 376-7630.

Contact Information
Please feel free to contact me at any time on state-related issues that are of concern to you. I may be reached through my website or my Lebanon or Harrisburg offices.

When contacting my office by e-mail, mail, or telephone, please be sure to share your e-mail, telephone number, and address so that we can follow up with you in a timely manner. Many inquiries can be handled with a phone call or email.

Was this message forwarded to you? Visit my website if you would like to receive your own copy of "Mike's Memo."

If you no longer wish to receive "Mike's Memo," please click here to unsubscribe.

Privacy Policy
2015 © Senate of Pennsylvania