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Rozzi and others call on Senate Republican leadership to allow vote on statute of limitations

Rozzi joined by advocates, stakeholders to modernize child sex abuse statutes of limitations

(Sep 21, 2015)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 21 — State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, held a Capitol news conference today to highlight the drastic need for reform of Pennsylvania’s archaic laws affecting victims of child sexual abuse. Rozzi was accompanied by state Sen. Rob Teplitz, D-Dauphin/Perry; Rep. Louise Williams Bishop, D-Phila.; Rep. Tom Murt, R-Montgomery/Phila.; and prominent reform advocates to discuss their respective bills, which are largely modeled after previously introduced legislation that would modify the statute of limitations to allow victims to seek civil action against perpetrators. Rozzi’s House Bill 661 and Teplitz’s Senate Bill 582, which is an identical Senate companion bill, would raise the age for an adult victim of child sex abuse to file a civil claim from 30 to 50 and permit previously time-barred victims to bring suit. "Five million dollars has been allocated in our state budget to ensure the Pope’s safety this week in Philadelphia," Rozzi said. "Hours were spent in last month’s 'mock' House session decrying how we don’t care about funding for rape victims and yet not one finger has been lifted in the past ten years by our leaders to enact laws which will actually stop the culture of abuse in this commonwealth." "There’s no expiration date on the pain survivors endure, there should be no expiration date on when they seek justice," Teplitz said. "Our legislation is a fair and reasonable reform measure that needs to be considered now." Bishop’s House Bill 655 would el Read more


Rozzi slams Republicans for using victims of rape as a political football during budget debates

(Aug 25, 2015)

HARRISBURG, Aug. 25 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, today voted against the state House Republicans’ budget line-item veto override attempts, stating that the votes were an “unconstitutional stunt” that inappropriately attempted to use victims of sexual abuse as justification. Rozzi, who has worked closely with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape, said victim rights groups are focused on expanding the ability of survivors of child sexual abuse to seek justice and accountability and that it is inappropriate to drag these victims into a partisan debate about the state budget. Rozzi pointed out that victims of child sexual abuse constitutes nearly 30 percent of cases at PCAR’s rape crisis centers. “I understand that political differences can cause tempers and tensions to rise, but that is not an excuse for the majority party in the General Assembly to use victims of rape and sexual abuse as a political football,” Rozzi said. “How dare they say they are fighting for these victims when they are also simultaneously blocking legislation that would reform the archaic and arbitrary laws that prevent true justice in our state.” Rozzi noted that statute of limitation reform legislation has been held up in committee by the Republican majority for 10 years. Currently, Rozzi’s reform legislation, H.B. 661, is awaiting consideration from the House Judiciary Committee. “If my colleagues from the other side of the aisle are ready to get serious about doing what is right for the Read more


Rozzi holds Disability Resource Fair

(Jul 30, 2015)

TEMPLE, July 30 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, hosted constituents and community partners this week at a Disability Resource Fair. Rozzi said he hosted this fair to ensure that the people of Berks County knew about state and federal resources available for individuals with disabilities or those taking care of them. The fair also focused on resources available for veterans and for older Pennsylvanians. “Since I have been in office, I have encountered so many families and individuals who are looking for resources to help them address these type issues,” Rozzi said. “By bringing such a diverse program close to home, I hope that we can connect more people and increase opportunities for everyone." At the fair, community partners and disability advocates presented seminars on a variety of topics. Rozzi held an informative legislative update during the event, including a question-and-answer segment. Fair attendees also had the opportunity to visit with a wide range of exhibitors. "I am happy to be able to provide so many resources in one location to my constituents, and I am very grateful to the individuals and organizations that made this Disability Resource Fair such a success," Rozzi said. "I look forward to holding similar events that bring valuable information and resources to the community in the near future." Read more


Rozzi: Republican Math Fails Pa.

(Jul 28, 2015)

Pa. state Rep. Mark Rozzi joined other House Democrats in York to call for a responsible state budget leading to increased education funding and lower property taxes. They say Gov. Tom Wolf was right to veto the Republican budget, which was loaded with funding gimmicks and failed to address the state's $3 billion structural budget deficit, underfunded schools, and skyrocketing property taxes forcing Pennsylvanians out of their homes. Read more


Rozzi hopes to open eyes with the IVIEW program

(Jul 22, 2015)

TEMPLE, July 22 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, introduced legislation today that would establish the Infant Vision Information, Education and Wellness program. Rozzi's legislation, House Bill 1478, is intended to increase early detection of vision and potentially life-threatening abnormalities, including cataracts, glaucoma, leukocoria and retinoblastoma, by requiring all newborns be screened for vision abnormalities before leaving the hospital. All newborns who are not born in a hospital would need to be screened within the first 30 days of life. "When a newborn is delivered in a Pennsylvania hospital, almost every part of the body is examined and tested to ensure that baby is healthy," Rozzi said. "The eyes are one major exception to this, though, and this oversight has resulted in serious ailments going untreated." Rozzi said he learned about the seriousness of eye ailments through his chief of staff, Chad Schlanger, whose son, Lawrence, was born with glaucoma. "Lawrence was born happy and seemingly healthy. It wasn't until mother and child were discharged from the hospital that they noticed a cloudiness in Lawrence's eye," Rozzi said. "A highly-skilled ophthalmologist diagnosed Lawrence with glaucoma, and after multiple surgeries and procedures, he is now doing well and staying healthy with medication." Rozzi explained that while Lawrence will have to wear glasses for the rest of his life due to the damage that was done to the optic nerve by high pressure befo Read more


Rozzi and staff lend a vet a hand as part of Operation Renovation

(Jul 10, 2015)

TEMPLE, July 10 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, and his staff teamed up with community partners Thursday to help to renovate a local veteran's home as part of Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Berks' "Operation Renovation." "The brave men and women who've served our country in the armed forced deserve our respect and appreciation and I am happy to be able to do my part," Rozzi said. "Initiatives like Operation Renovation are great because they bring the community together to do something good for one of our neighbors." Rozzi and his staff assisted the homeowner with interior updates of the home, replacing lathe siding on the house and other repairs. Operation Renovation is a week-long event that encourages community members to assist veterans and their families with household repairs and renovations free of charge. Read more


Rozzi: Sham Budget Denies Property Tax Relief

(Jun 27, 2015)

Pa. state Rep. Mark Rozzi voted “no” on a bad Pennsylvania budget that does nothing to help restore school funding cuts that have hurt students in our area and does nothing to reduce property taxes for homeowners. Read more


House passes Thomas bill to modernize Second Stage Loan Program

(Jun 24, 2015)

HARRISBURG, June 24 – State Rep. W. Curtis Thomas, D-Phila., announced today that legislation he authored to modernize and streamline the Second Stage Loan Program has passed the House of Representatives. "I'd like to thank my colleagues in the House and especially the members of the Commerce Committee for their support of this effort. Creating an environment that allows businesses to prosper is a vital component of ensuring a bright future for Pennsylvania," said Thomas, Democratic chairman of the House Commerce Committee. The Second Stage Loan Program, one of eight programs created in 2004 when the Commonwealth Financing Authority was established, provides loan guarantees to commercial lending institutions that make loans to Pennsylvanian businesses in the life sciences, advanced technology or manufacturing industries. The program is intended to help business that are past the startup phase but have not yet matured enough to be able to borrow funds based on their financial strength. House Bill 810 alters the requirements of the Second Stage Loan Program to allow business that have existed for more than seven years to participate. Currently, only businesses that are at least two years but less than seven years old are eligible for the program. The bill would also give the CFA the authority to determine the maximum loan guarantee and adjust it based on market conditions. "The restrictions on the age of the businesses and other components proved to be unnecessarily rest Read more


Rozzi applauds local farmers' and artists' market on grand opening

(Jun 24, 2015)

TEMPLE, June 24 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, is encouraging constituents of the 126th Legislative District to join him at the Antietam Valley Farmers' and Artists' Market for a ribbon cutting and grand opening celebration. The grand opening event will take place at 8 a.m. Saturday at the historic Carsonia Park, 905 Byram St., Pennside. "I am always happy to support events that support our community and local businesses," Rozzi said. "The Antietam Valley Farmers' and Artists' Market is a valuable asset for the area that promotes locally grown food and artisan crafts. I wish them well on their grand opening and I look forward to attending the market regularly." More than 25 vendors will be present at the grand opening event offering goods ranging from fresh meats and produce to a variety of homemade products. The Antietam Valley Farmers' and Artists' Market will take place every Saturday until the end of October. Read more


Rozzi urges Kane to take up new Sandusky case

(Jun 05, 2015)

TEMPLE, June 5 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, today said Attorney General Kathleen Kane should reconsider her decision to not take up the criminal complaint Anthony Spinelli Jr. filed against Jerry Sandusky – and is urging his General Assembly colleagues to support his legislation that would extend the statute of limitations in child sexual abuse cases. Rozzi said he believes Spinelli, who was reportedly assaulted by Sandusky in 1988 at a recruitment camp at Penn State, deserves his day in court. Spinelli filed a criminal complaint last year but no action has been taken by the Office of the Attorney General because Kane claims the statute of limitations has elapsed. "For victims of child sexual abuse, the pain and suffering never goes away. The perpetrators often suffer no consequences because of arbitrary time limits imposed on victims. But this case is different, Mr. Spinelli should be well within his rights to file a criminal complaint and Attorney General Kane should do everything within her power to pursue the case," Rozzi said. "This situation highlights the absurdity of statute of limitations laws for child sexual abuse cases. The legal system should be supportive of victims and not allow abusers to hide behind a technicality." Rozzi's legislation, H.B. 661, would raise the age at which an adult victim of child sex abuse could file a civil claim from 30 to 50 and allow previously time-barred victims to bring a suit to court. Rozzi is also supporting a Read more


Rozzi proposal seeks to increase early detection of eye abnormalities

(May 26, 2015)

TEMPLE, May 26 – In an effort to increase early detection of vision and potentially life-threatening abnormalities, state Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, said he intends to introduce legislation that would establish the Infant Vision Information, Education and Wellness program. Rozzi's proposal would ensure that all newborns are screened for vision abnormalities before leaving the hospital. All newborns who are not born in a hospital would need to be screened within the first 30 days of life. "The intent of the IVIEW program is to ensure every child in this commonwealth is properly screened for possibly debilitating vision abnormalities that potentially could cost them their vision or even their lives," Rozzi said. "The good news is that screening for these abnormalities is a simple process and early treatment often can resolve the underlying issue." Rozzi said the ailments that the IVIEW screening could detect include cataracts, glaucoma, leukocoria and retinoblastoma. The IVIEW program, which would be established within the Department of Health, also would provide all parents with information about the merits of continued screening and details about needed follow-up care. "A simple eye test can make a world of difference for children born with these abnormalities," Rozzi said. "I look forward to introducing my legislation shortly to address this crucial issue. Rozzi said the IVIEW program would bring Pennsylvania closer to meeting the current American Acade Read more


Rozzi thanks supporters for successful Statute of Limitations Reform Lobby Day

(Apr 15, 2015)

HARRISBURG, April 15 – After a strong showing of support from legislators, advocates and victims, state Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, called today’s lobby day in support of reforms to statute of limitations reform in cases of child sexual abuse a success. Read more


Rozzi: Advocates to lobby for statute of limitations reform bills

(Apr 14, 2015)

HARRISBURG, April 14 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, announced today that survivors and advocates for statute of limitations reform in cases of child sexual abuse will be at the state Capitol to encourage House Judiciary Committee action on bipartisan legislation to protect victims better. Read more


Spring 2015 Rozzi Report

(Apr 13, 2015)

This January marked the beginning of my second term as your state representative. I am honored and humbled to serve you and represent the 126th Legislative District in the General Assembly. This session, my legislative priorities include property tax relief, public safety and small business development. I will also continue my work to help protect victims of sexual abuse. Read more


Rozzi to serve as keynote speaker at SARCC dinner

(Apr 10, 2015)

HARRISBURG, April 10 – As keynote speaker at the Sexual Assault Resource and Counseling Center’s annual dinner, state Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, will share his personal experience as a victim of sexual abuse. Read more


Rozzi to host free vehicle etching event

(Apr 06, 2015)

TEMPLE, April 6 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, will host a free vehicle etching event in an effort to combat vehicle theft in Berks County. Read more


The Facts About Child Protection Laws

(Mar 30, 2015)

Over the last two years, nearly two dozen child protection laws were enacted in Pennsylvania. The new laws are working to keep children safer here in Berks County Read more


Legislature needs information on medical marijuana

(Mar 24, 2015)

I attended a joint public hearing of the House Health and Judiciary committees in Philadelphia to get information on medical marijuana. It's time for the state to allow the medicine, especially for children with epilepsy. Read more


FREE VIN Etching Event

(Mar 20, 2015)

Auto theft is one of the largest property-related crimes committed in Berks County. That is why I’m hosting a free vehicle etching event to help protect your vehicle. Read more


Rozzi announces career technical center’s ‘out of this world’ opportunity

(Mar 06, 2015)

HARRISBURG, March 6 — State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, today announced the Reading Muhlenberg Career Technology Center will be involved with making parts for the international space station. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is partnering with the Reading Muhlenberg CTC Shop to machine parts for use by space station astronauts. John Keck, liaison between NASA and the local career and technology center, will visit Reading Muhlenberg CTC at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, March 10 to examine students’ progress. Read more