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Friday, June 15, 2012

Capitol Update From Rep. Martin Causer of Turtlepoint

Capitol Update
June 15, 2012
 The latest news from the State Capitol
Budget Negotiations in Full Swing

Budget Hearings Begins Next WeekWith just two weeks remaining in the current fiscal fiscal year, lawmakers and the Corbett administration are busy working out the details of the 2012-13 state budget.

As the state and national economies continue to struggle to recover, state revenues again came in below estimates during the month of May. The $44 million deficit in collections brings the state’s total budget shortfall to $332.9 million. Read this month’s Economic Brief for more details.

Clearly, this is another challenging budget year. I’ll provide another update on the process next week.
 
House OKs In-Depth Study of PA EMS Services

House OKs In-Depth Study of PA EMS ServicesThe state House this week adopted a resolution I authored to call for an in-depth assessment of our emergency medical services (EMS) system in Pennsylvania.

As a former dispatcher and emergency responder myself, I know that efficient and effective EMS services are vital to the health and safety of all Pennsylvanians. I believe our providers are doing a great job, but as a Legislature we have a responsibility to ensure we make the most of the opportunities presented by improved technology, management systems, infrastructure and communications capabilities.

House Resolution 315 calls on the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee (LBFC) and the Joint State Government Commission (JSGC) to study both the financial and administrative effectiveness of the state’s EMS system. The committees specifically are charged with exploring enhancement of the current system through use of existing government and private sector programs, institutions, facilities and infrastructure resources. The committees also are directed to make use of nationally recognized associations and organizations to identify opportunities to make use of the state’s college and university systems to boost training, recruitment and retention. Finally, they will study the possibility of streamlining and restructuring the regional EMS councils.

The report is to be presented to the General Assembly by June 30, 2013.
 
Legislative Reapportionment Commission Approves Final Maps

Legislative Reapportionment Commission Approves Final MapsThe Legislative Reapportionment Commission has approved final maps for Pennsylvania’s House and Senate districts. This vote followed a public comment period and two public hearings to receive input on the proposal.

Under the plan, the 67th District I represent would be changed to include all of McKean County and would continue to include all of Cameron County and most of Potter County. Galeton Borough and Pike Township in Potter County would be moved into the 68th Legislative District represented by Matt Baker. However, it is important to note that such changes will not take place until at least 2014, pending approval of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

Every 10 years, the Legislature is constitutionally required to craft a plan defining new legislative district boundaries to reflect population changes recorded in census data. For the latest updates on redistricting, visit www.redistricting.state.pa.us.

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