Dec. 16, 2019 / Weekly Roundup

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Weekly Roundup
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol
Protecting Pennsylvania Taxpayers

Members of the Commonwealth Foundation and I met with the Patriot News editorial board Wednesday to discuss the Taxpayer Protection Act. Getting this act on the books would be a great first step toward putting Pennsylvania’s fiscal house in order. This legislation would amend the Pennsylvania Constitution to limit the growth of future spending in relation to the combined rate of inflation and population growth over a three-year period – bottom line – it wouldn’t allow the state’s budget to grow faster than our state’s economy.

The Commonwealth cannot continue down the same slippery budgeting slope. Because of our budget chicanery, we annually implement a creative concoction of taxes, fees and financial shifts, squeezing businesses and taxpayers at every conceivable corner to cover perpetual runaway spending.

I have written about the Taxpayer Protection Act before. To read my column, click here.
Financial Reform Bills to Improve PA’s Fiscal House

On Wednesday, Dec. 18, I will be joined by fellow representatives as we roll out our financial reform package to strengthen the financial management of the Commonwealth. No dollar collected, held or spent by state government belongs to the government.

The bills, including my House Bill 1991, would reduce state borrowing, improve the state’s credit and strengthen Pennsylvania’s Rainy Day Fund.

The press conference to discuss the bills will be available on my website, Tune in to watch it live starting at 9:30 a.m.
Successful Meeting on Water Issues in Newberry Twp.

I held a meeting on Thursday to ensure Newberry Township residents facing water quality issues are informed on what is happening to alleviate this problem. The speakers included representatives from the state Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Health and SUEZ Water.

I want to thank everyone who attended. I hope the meeting was informative and helpful.
Building Our Workforce, Training Opportunities

The Department of Labor and Industry (L&I) is now accepting applications for $6.6 million in PAsmart Apprenticeship grants to help more workers “earn while they learn” and gain the hands-on skills for good jobs in high-growth industries.

Building on the House GoodJobs4PA initiative launched earlier this year, the grant program is designed to build a diverse talent pipeline into the building and construction trades; expand registered apprenticeships and pre-apprenticeships in non-traditional industries with an emphasis on health care, manufacturing and information technology; and support registered apprenticeships and pre-apprenticeships through ambassador networks across the Commonwealth.

Eligible applicants include organizations that serve as sponsors or intermediaries of registered apprenticeships including businesses, community-based organizations, economic development organizations, industry associations, labor organizations, local education agencies, local workforce development boards, nonprofit organizations, post-secondary institutions, public libraries and STEM ecosystems.

The deadline to apply is Jan. 10, 2020. Grant materials, requirements and information about the bidder’s webinars are available on the department’s website here.
Tis the Season!

It's time to get into the holiday spirit. The Capitol Christmas tree is shining bright after the official tree-lighting ceremony this week. The 18-foot tall Douglas Fir tree comes from Crystal Spring Tree Farm in Lehighton, Carbon County, and was donated by the Pennsylvania Christmas Tree Growers Association.

This year’s tree is decorated with more than 800 LED lights and 500 ornaments created by senior citizens and preschoolers across the state. The tree will remain on display in the Capitol Rotunda throughout the holiday season.
House in Session This Week

The House is back in session this week. You can stay up on all the latest news on my website, and the House GOP site,, where you can also find this week’s schedule.
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