Here's this week's schedule for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. Information has been supplied by Rep. Mike Turzai, Republican Majority Leader.
Updating Pennsylvania Child Protection Laws
In light of the recent sexual abuse scandals involving students, the House passed and sent to the Senate for consideration the Child Exploitation Awareness Education Act, House Bill 19 authored by Rep. Mauree Gingrich (R-Lebanon County).
The legislation would require the Pennsylvania Department of Education to develop an age-appropriate child exploitation awareness curriculum to be included in the health curriculum for children in grades K-8. The curriculum would teach children to recognize sexual abuse and to identify certain behaviors in adults, such as grooming, that can lead to sexual abuse.
Next week, the House will continue its focus on child protection by moving a series of bills which passed out of the Judiciary Committee, chaired by Rep. Ron Marsico, R-Dauphin County. The bills were developed from recommendations of the Task Force on Child Protection, which was formed in the wake of the Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal. The task force presented a final report to the General Assembly last year that included a number of recommendations for improving Pennsylvania’s child welfare system.
The House Children and Youth Committee, chaired by Rep. Kathy Watson (R-Bucks County), will begin to hold several meetings and hearings on a package of bills based on the task force recommendations.
The Weekly Schedule
Identified by bill number, the sponsors and summaries for bills scheduled to be considered in committee or on the House floor are posted below. More information regarding these bills can be found at PAHouseGOP.com by clicking on the “Research Bills” tab.
Monday, February 11, 2013
EDUCATION, 11 a.m., Room 60, East Wing
- HB 2 (Rep. Bernie O’Neill, R-Bucks): Creates a legislative commission to recommend a formula to distribute state funding for special education.
- HB 555 (Rep. Justin Simmons, R-Lehigh/Northampton): Requires that school districts provide Megan’s Law website information to aid parents in determining safe walking routes to and from school and school bus stops.
- HR 53 (Rep. Gary Day, R-Berks/Lehigh): Establishes a select committee on school safety and security.
VETERANS AFFAIRS AND EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS, 11 a.m., Room 205, Ryan Office Building
- HB 119 (Rep. Jim Marshall, R-Beaver): Establishes an “Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Memorial Flag” to honor EMS personnel who have died in the line of duty.
- HB 179 (Rep. Bernie O’Neill, R-Bucks): Requires insurers to pay emergency medical services (EMS) claims directly to an EMS agency for 911 calls.
- HB 472 (Rep. Stephen Barrar, R-Chester/Delaware): Provides in-state tuition rates at community colleges and state-related/state-owned institutions of higher learning for veterans, military and civilian personnel, along with their spouses and dependent children, so long as they are a resident of the Commonwealth on the first day of the semester.
- HB 500 (Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Beaver/Lawrence): Includes members of the Pennsylvania Civil Air Patrol in the Emergency Responder Death Benefit Act.
- HB 583 (Rep. Stephen Barrar, R-Chester/Delaware): Advances consolidation, regionalization and joint purchasing measures among county 911 centers.
GAME AND FISHERIES, Call of Chair, Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
- HB 126 (Rep. David Maloney, R-Berks): Increases the availability of certified hunter education courses in public schools.
- HB 353 (Rep. Dave Reed, R-Indiana): Reduces the safety zone distance for trapping within any waterway, watercourse, marsh, pond, or dam from 150 yards to 50 yards for properly licensed furtakers and maintains the 150-yard safety zone for trapping near a school, daycare, or playground.
- HB 410 (Rep. Matt Baker, R-Bradford): Guarantees that the right to hunt, fish and harvest game will forever be preserved.
On Monday, the House will convene at 1 p.m. for legislative business. The members will vote the uncontested calendar and Rule 35 resolutions.
Votes on Second Consideration
- HB 121 (Rep. Curt Sonney, R-Erie): Allows for the direct shipment of wine to residents of the Commonwealth and requires that the wine shipper charge the 6 percent sales tax and the 18 percent Johnstown Flood Tax for all shipments to the Commonwealth and remit the tax to the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue.
- HB 316 (Rep. Julie Harhart, R-Lehigh/Northampton): Establishes a funding mechanism to help existing Child Advocacy Centers and establish new Child Advocacy Centers.
- HB 328 (Rep. Sheryl Delozier, R-Cumberland): Requires that courts have a complete record regarding whether a child subject to a proceeding has been abused or is the subject of a child abuse investigation.
- HB 350 (Rep. Todd Rock, R-Franklin): Establishes the crime of intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing serious bodily injury to a child under the age of 12 as a first-degree felony and establishes the crime of intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury to a child under the age of four as a second-degree felony.
- HB 404 (Rep. Ron Marsico, R-Dauphin): Establishes the crime of intimidation or retaliation of a victim or witness in child abuse cases and penalties.
- HB 414 (Rep. Bernie O’Neill, R-Bucks): Requires that a court, in a child custody matter, has information regarding the child with respect to whether the child has been identified as a victim of child abuse by a party or a member of the party’s household.
- HB 493 (Rep. Matt Gabler, R-Clearfield/Elk): Redefines the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Project (RACP) program and reduces the RACP debt ceiling.
Votes on Third Consideration
- HB 34 (Rep. Kate Harper, R-Montgomery): Requires the design, construction, and renovation of state-owned or state-leased buildings to comply with specified energy and high-performance building standards.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
CHILDREN AND YOUTH, 9:30 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
- Informational meeting with an overview of the child welfare system in Pennsylvania and special focus on the response to child abuse.
HUMAN SERVICES, 10 a.m., Room B-31, Main Capitol
- HB 315 (Rep. Gene DiGirolamo. R-Bucks): Supplements funding for Human Services.
- HB 317 (Rep. Gene DiGirolamo, R-Bucks County): Establishes the Pharmaceutical Accountability Monitoring System (PAMS) database within the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs to monitor the prescription and dispersal of Schedule II, III, IV and V drugs.
JUDICIARY, 10 a.m., Room 205, Ryan Office Building
- HB 23 (Rep. Glen Grell, R-Cumberland): Comprehensive revision of the Uniform Arbitration Act.
- HB 31 (Rep. Mauree Gingrich, R-Lebanon): Amends the Crimes Code to provide for the offense of neglect of a care-dependent person and creates the offense of abuse of a care-dependent person.
- HB 89 (Rep. Ron Marsico, R-Dauphin): Discontinues sales of Drug Awareness Resistance Education (DARE) license plates and transfers all money in the DARE license plate fund to the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency to provide grants to Child Advocacy Centers.
- HB 90 (Rep. Rick Saccone, R-Allegheny/Washington): Authorizes the issuance of an administrative subpoena.
- HB 286 (Rep. Deberah Kula, D-Fayette/Westmoreland): Provides courts with guidelines to follow during custody disputes and divorce proceedings, to help courts identify families at risk for abduction, and to provide methods to prevent the interstate or foreign abduction of children.
- HB 321 (Rep. Marcy Toepel, R-Montgomery): Establishes a sentencing enhancement for the offense of child pornography.
- HB 342 (Rep. Marguerite Quinn, R-Bucks): Prevents courts from disclosing the names of minor victims of sexual or physical abuse to the public.
On Tuesday the House will meet at 11 a.m. for legislative business.
Votes on Second Consideration
- HB 272 (Rep. Bernie O’Neill, R-Bucks): Allows licensed dentists from other states or countries to obtain a restricted faculty license to teach in Pennsylvania.
- HB 290 (Rep. Michele Brooks, R-Crawford/Lawrence/Mercer): Revises the Local Option Small Games of Chance Act to clarify definitions, permit new games and address other concerns raised by affected organizations and clubs.
- HB 336 (Rep. Kate Harper, R-Montgomery): Authorizes the Commissioner of the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs (BPOA) to expunge the disciplinary record of a licensee, registrant, certificate holder or permit holder.
- HB 378 (Rep. Dom Costa, D-Allegheny): Seeks to implement new training in recognizing and reporting child abuse in the mandated training for both police officers and minor judiciary.
- HR 45 (Rep. Tom Caltagirone, D-Berks): Directs the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency to undertake a study on the expansion and funding of Child Advocacy Centers in Pennsylvania.
Votes on Third Consideration
- HB 121
- HB 316
- HB 328
- HB 350
- HB 404
- HB 414
- HB 493
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
EDUCATION, 8:30 a.m., Room 205, Ryan Office Building
- Informational meeting on the implementation of the teacher educator effectiveness system and the adoption of the department’s new performance profiles.
AGING AND OLDER ADULT SERVICES, 9:30 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
- Informational meeting with presentation on aging demographics in Pennsylvania.
JUDICIARY/SUBCOMMITTEE ON CRIME AND CORRECTIONS, 9:30 a.m., Room 140, Main Capitol
- Public hearing on the closures of State Correctional Institution Cresson and State Correctional Institution Greenburg.
STATE GOVERNMENT, 10 a.m., Room B-31, Main Capitol
- HB 201 (Rep. George Dunbar, R-Westmoreland): Places limitations on the membership of evaluation committees that review contract proposals under the competitive sealed proposal method of procurement.
On Wednesday the House will meet at 11 a.m. for legislative business.
Votes on Third Consideration
- HB 272
- HB 290
- HB 336
- HB 378
Thursday, February 14, 2013
CONSUMER AFFAIRS, 9 a.m., Room 140, Main Capitol
- Public hearing on Natural Gas Distribution Service.