May. 10, 2019

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

Statement on Rep. Brian Sims Harassment of Peaceful Protestors
“The actions of Rep. Sims are reprehensible and amount to bullying and harassment of peaceful protestors. Rep. Sims is openly encouraging cyber bullying of individuals who are peacefully and lawfully exercising their constitutional rights. Offering cash to his social media followers to publicly identify teenagers who are protesting Planned Parenthood is beyond the pale. These actions are beneath the dignity of the office that Rep. Sims holds and are reprehensible. Bullying, no matter the form, is a huge challenge in today’s society. Instead of setting an example to live up to, Rep. Sims is openly and defiantly encouraging the harassment of teenagers and seniors.

“Rep. Sims needs to issue a formal apology to those he harassed and to the constituents he serves. Further I believe his actions warrant an investigation by the House Ethics Committee. The actions taken by Rep. Sims are serious and are a concern to public safety.”
                                                         

Constituent Breakfast

 
In addition to town halls and other events where I update constituents on what is happening at the Capitol and they let me know what is on their minds, I recently held a constituent breakfast at the Great American Saloon in Red Lion. We spoke about property taxes, the Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program, the possible closure of TMI and other nuclear plants, automation in today’s workforce, work requirements for welfare recipients, and Second Amendment rights. We had a great crowd and good discussion.
 

Protecting Our Second Amendment Rights
One of the biggest rallies we have each year at the Capitol is our Second Amendment Rally and the one we held Monday was most impressive. Pennsylvanians are passionate about their rights and they let legislators and the government know it with an overflowing attendance in the Rotunda. The speakers included Kelly Ann Pidgeon, Armed and Feminine LLC; Eric Pratt, executive director, Gun Owners of America; Joshua Prince, chief counsel, Firearms Industry Consulting Group; and Tim Schmidt, United States Concealed Carry Association.

The annual rally began in 2006, when dozens of state lawmakers and hundreds of citizens from across the Commonwealth joined forces in this grassroots event in support of the Second Amendment and Article 1, Section 21 of the Pennsylvania Constitution which clearly states: “The right of the citizens to bear arms in defense of themselves and the State shall not be questioned.”
 

Expanding Education Opportunities
More students and their families would have access to additional educational options under legislation approved by the House this week to expand the successful Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program. I voted in favor of House Bill 800, which would increase funding for the program by $100 million to $210 million, providing tens of thousands of additional Pennsylvania families the ability to choose a school that best fits their students’ needs.

In order to ensure that the scholarship program can continue to grow to meet demand, the legislation would also establish an automatic escalator, increasing the EITC scholarship cap by 10% whenever 90% of the tax credits are claimed in the prior year.

To allow more middle-class families access to this program, the bill would increase the maximum annual household income by $10,000 (to $95,000, before add-ons per child), while guaranteeing that once a student has received a scholarship, he or she will remain eligible through high school graduation regardless of changes to family income.

The EITC program provides tax credits to businesses that make contributions to approved scholarship organizations offering scholarships to children in kindergarten through grade 12, educational improvement organizations providing funding for innovative educational programs in public schools, and pre-kindergarten scholarship organizations offering scholarships to children enrolled in pre-kindergarten programs. The bill now moves to the Senate for its consideration.
 

Improving CPR Education to Save Lives
This week the House passed Senate Bill 115 aimed at teaching students cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to help them save lives. The bill would require the Pennsylvania Department of Education to work with the Department of Health and other stakeholders to develop curriculum that could be used by schools across the state. The aim is to help reduce the more than 350,000 cardiac arrests that occur outside of a hospital each year by preparing students to save lives through CPR and the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED). The bill now heads back to the Senate for concurrence.
 

Celebrating Our Small Businesses
 
This week marks Small Business Week in Pennsylvania. Small businesses are the backbone of the Commonwealth’s economy, employing over 2.5 million people. In fact, 99.6% of employers in the state are small businesses. I have been working hard to help Pennsylvania’s small businesses thrive and grow by cutting the red tape that creates barriers to growth and cleaning up our outdated laws.
 

New PHEAA Loan Program

 
PHEAA has announced a new student loan program for Pennsylvania students who need help paying for college after exhausting their eligibility for gift aid, such as the PA State Grant Program, and low-cost federal student loans. The PA Forward Student Loan Program is a borrower-friendly suite of low cost alternative student loans that will be available to Pennsylvania borrowers, beginning with the 2019-20 academic year. To learn more about PA Forward loans and to access an application when they become available in 2019, please visit PHEAA.org/PA-Forward.

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Office Locations
100 Redco Avenue (Just off of Route 74) Red Lion, PA 17356 | Phone: (717) 244-9232
Toll-Free: 1-800-3SAYLOR (1-800-372-9567)
245 Main Capitol Building, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2094 | Phone: (717) 783-6426
Email: ssaylor@pahousegop.com
TTY: 855-282-0614 
 
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