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Brennan bill to ease restrictions on municipalities that take ownership of abandoned cemeteries passes House unanimously

(Apr 17, 2024)

“Only private, for-profit companies who sell burial plots to the public should be tasked with registering as a cemetery – not local governments,” Brennan said. “This requirement impedes the work of our already burdened municipalities, who are simply maintaining these burial grounds, not profiting from them. Read more

Lawmakers advocate for awareness, research on Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy

(Apr 17, 2024)

Rep. Lisa Borowski called on the House yesterday to pass her legislation that would raise awareness about Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP) and enhance the accuracy of a SUDEP determination by coroners. Read more

Ciresi bill waiving vehicle registration fees for veterans in PA unanimously passes state House

(Apr 16, 2024)

HARRISBURG, April 16 – In recognition of their valiant service to the nation, the PA House today unanimously passed a bill sponsored by state Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, which would waive vehicle title and registration fees for veterans who were captured, injured or received the Congressional Medal of Honor while serving. “Following their service, veterans return home impacted by their experiences and face financial hurdles as they begin the transition to civilian life, including relocation, finding new homes, applying for jobs and registering their vehicles,” Ciresi said. “We owe it to these heroes to relieve some of the pressure by waiving vehicle registration fees. By permanently removing registration fees for veterans who were injured, captured, or received our highest military decoration, we would show our permanent appreciation for their sacrifices and service.” Currently, recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor, seriously injured veterans, and former POWs pay a $10 vehicle registration processing fee. Under H.B. 105, this fee would be removed, and they would no longer be subject to titling fees. For recipients of the Purple Heart, who currently have to pay titling and registration fees in full, they would no longer be subject to paying either. The bill is now on its way to the state Senate for consideration. Read more

Ciresi bill encouraging historical renovation across PA passes state House

(Apr 15, 2024)

HARRISBURG, April 15 – A bill by state Rep. Joe Ciresi to create a pilot program to help fund the renovation of historic buildings across Pennsylvania passed the House today. Under H.B. 1573 , a two-year program would be administered by the Department of Community and Economic Development to help communities facing the challenges of updating and repurposing historic buildings, an expensive but worthwhile task in the commonwealth, said Ciresi, D-Montgomery. “Pennsylvania is home to some of the country’s most historical and beautiful communities, but with them come the high costs of renovation of older buildings,” he said. “Many of these buildings lack accessibility and weren’t built to meet modern building codes. With this grant program we will support reinvestment in our downtowns, assist with community revitalization, preserve historic properties and neighborhood character, and create jobs.” Improvements would be evaluated based on their ability to facilitate income-generating use of the property, their contribution to economic and community revitalization, and historic preservation and commercial or recreational opportunities for the public. Specifically, the program would help bring mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire-protection systems up to code through the installation of modern equipment such as sprinklers, efficient HVAC systems, elevators and extra stairs. Additionally, grants could be Read more

Shusterman celebrates passage of H.B. 1853

(Apr 15, 2024)

“We’re always looking to improve the lives of seniors in Pennsylvania,” Shusterman said. “By encouraging communication between the Department of Health and nursing home staff, we hope that the exchange of ideas and information between these two groups will lead to a unified effort to provide the best senior care possible. I want to thank my colleagues for their support of this legislation, including my fellow state Representative Kristin Marcell for her co-sponsorship and effort in delivering this legislation.” Read more

Otten bill to expand early intervention services passes House

(Apr 10, 2024)

HARRISBURG, April 10 – State Rep. Danielle Friel Otten’s bill to provide early intervention services to children born to mothers struggling with postpartum depression passed the Pennsylvania House today. House Bill 1593 would expand services to children from birth through two years with mothers diagnosed with or at high risk for postpartum depression, ensuring that these vulnerable children and their families have access to the support they need. Early intervention services can reduce a family’s sources of stress and encourage healthy relationships among children, families and caregivers. Otten, D-Chester, introduced the legislation with a co-prime sponsor, state Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila., who chairs the PA House Children and Youth Committee. “Welcoming a new baby should be a joyous time for a family,” Otten said. “And yet the reality is that a new baby can also mean sleepless days and nights, isolation from friendships, anxiety about stretched finances or missed career opportunities, and physical, hormonal changes that trigger postpartum depression.” “There’s an abundance of research that shows that a child’s development in the earliest years of their life is significantly impacted by the tenor of their earliest formative relationships with their family and loved ones,” Bullock said. “By supporting children and mothers throughout this delicate time and Read more

Shusterman & Davis family law arbitration bill heads to governor’s desk

(Apr 10, 2024)

State Reps. Melissa Shusterman, D-Chester, and Tina Davis, D-Bucks, are excited to announce that H.B. 917 passed the state House of Representatives with full bipartisan support and sent it to the governor.The bill has seen unanimous, bipartisan support throughout the legislative process, from the House’s initial consideration of the bill last year, to its consideration in the Senate, and again with today’s unanimous concurrence in the House. Read more

Pielli’s artificial intelligence content disclosure bill passes PA House

(Apr 10, 2024)

“The bill is simple. If it’s AI, it has to say it’s AI,” Pielli said. “People deserve to know if what they’re looking at is real or not when making purchases. This disclosure will be clear and conspicuous in the same medium as the content generated to help consumers make better-informed and more secure purchases. We also hope to curb possible misinformation by malicious authors who knowingly or recklessly generate and spread this content with the goal of fooling the public.” Read more

House clears Sappey bill to ensure Pennsylvanians’ access to telemedicine

(Apr 10, 2024)

HARRISBURG, April 10 – State House lawmakers today passed legislation introduced by Rep. Christina Sappey, D Chester, that would require insurers to cover telemedicine. “The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light just how critical telemedicine is in providing access to a variety of healthcare services, particularly in rural areas. Special needs families were able to receive therapies with consistency and many of us found mental health services available through telemedicine,” Sappey said. "Studies show that four out of five Americans have used telemedicine at some point in their life. Data also indicates that more than half of telemedicine visits are for mental health conditions—proving how vital telemedicine is in promoting mental health. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania is one of a handful of states that do not require health insurers to cover telemedicine. This leaves Pennsylvanians at serious risk of not receiving care at all, and that’s unacceptable.” Under Sappey’s bill ( H.B. 1512 ) , a health insurer may not refuse to pay or reimburse a participating health care provider or a covered person for a medically necessary and appropriate covered healthcare service provided through telemedicine. Telemedicine does not include care provided solely through voicemail, email or instant messaging. “I am grateful to my House colleagues for voting to Read more

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Bills to limit water and sewer system privatization move from committee to full Pa. House

(Apr 10, 2024)

A 2016 law changed how municipal utilities were valued in an effort to encourage the privatization of struggling municipal systems. But the majority of acquisitions since then have been well-maintained water and sewer systems, and residents in those systems have been hit with exorbitant rate hikes. Read more