COVID-19 Legislative Package Passed
This week, the Pennsylvania House and Senate convened remotely for the first time ever, working tirelessly to pass a package of bills to help deal with this global pandemic. Coronavirus mitigation guidelines will continue to remain in effect, but these bills will help us deal with the threat swiftly in this extremely difficult and unsure time. I was proud to vote for all of these bills, but I believe we need to do more to help our struggling small businesses and Pennsylvanians who are out of work, and I will continue to work with my colleagues in the legislature on achieving that.
The following bills are headed to Governor Tom Wolf’s desk to be signed into law:
- House Bill 68, which would allow those who are out of work because of COVID-19 to collect unemployment compensation and waive the “waiting week” and standard job search requirements. This bill was amended in the Senate this week to include compensation for workers affected by COVID-19. This bill also helps employers by not increasing their Unemployment Compensation taxes for benefits given to employees during this pandemic.
- House Bill 1232, which would extend the deadline to file state taxes to match the new federal deadline of July 15th. This bill also would authorize up to $50 million of state funds to be transferred to aid a variety of health care providers including hospitals, emergency services, nursing homes and other entities throughout the commonwealth. Additionally, Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana regulations, which were set to expire in May, would be extended until November 2021. I had written legislation to delay the state tax filing deadline and I’m happy to see it has now made it into the bill package headed to the Governor.
- Senate Bill 422, which aims to move the Pennsylvania primary from April 28th to June 2nd, just for this year, to protect voters and poll workers.
- Senate Bill 751, which would allow the Secretary of Education to make changes to the emergency school code and waive the 180-day requirement for this academic year and ensure that our teachers are still getting paid.
I am extremely proud of the effort put forth by my colleagues in the General Assembly and our Governor. Do what you can to stay home and stay safe as we work to protect you and your loved ones.