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Friday, April 20, 2018

Headline Harrisburg by Rep. Matt Gabler

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Headline Harrisburg
Friday, April 20, 2018
The latest news from the State Capitol 
                          
 
Filling In-Demand Jobs Now and in the Future

To help job creators fill in-demand jobs now and in the future, the House is considering a nine-bill bipartisan package this week seeking to improve career and technical education opportunities and enhance science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curriculum.

The package includes measures to promote public-private partnerships; remove barriers for qualified career and technical educators; expand awareness of training opportunities and future earning potential; increase flexibility for innovative secondary career and technical programs; enhance and promote articulation agreements; develop and maintain a comprehensive online career resource center; coordinate state-level career exploration and workforce development opportunities; improve local and occupational advisory committees; and add K-12 teachers to the membership of the Workforce Development Board.

The package was developed following recommendations made by the House Select Subcommittee on Technical Education and Career Readiness, which was created to study and review the Commonwealth’s career and technical education policy.

The bills are expected to receive a final vote in the House the week of April 30.
                
         
Promoting Self-Sufficiency with Welfare Work Requirements

To ensure that public assistance programs can benefit those in legitimate need, the House is advancing three measures designed to encourage self-reliance through work experiences. In other states with work requirements, families have seen their incomes double and have been able to follow their dreams of self-sustainability.

Passing the House this week was House Bill 2138, which would require the Department of Human Services (DHS) to institute work or community engagement requirements for able-bodied Medical Assistance recipients. The work requirements include being employed or attending a job training program for 20 or more hours a week or completing 12 job training program-related activities in a month. Exceptions do apply for those unable to work.

House Bill 2138 has sparked a great deal of debate, especially concerning who it would and would not impact. Here is a list of the individuals who ARE exempt from the work requirements:
  • An enrollee who is attending high school full time.
  • An individual who is receiving temporary or permanent long-term disability benefits.
  • An individual who is under 20 years of age or those who are 65 and older.
  • Pregnant women.
  • SSI beneficiaries.
  • An individual residing in a mental health institution or correctional institution.
  • An individual experiencing a crisis, serious medical condition or temporary condition which prohibits employment, such as domestic violence or a substance use disorder.
  • Those who are a primary caregiver to a dependent under 6 years of age or who is permanently disabled.
Also before the House is House Bill 1659, which would require healthy (able-bodied) adults without children to work, perform community service, participate in a work program or be enrolled as a full-time student in order to receive SNAP (food stamp) benefits.

Another bill advancing to help ensure maximum efficiency of welfare programs is House Bill 1618, which would require the forfeiture of any assistance allotments that are unused after a six-month period.
                  
         
April is ‘Donate Life Month’

To encourage people to give the gift of life, House Resolution 821 was adopted by the House this week to declare April 2018 as Donate Life Month in Pennsylvania.

In Pennsylvania, about 8,000 people are on the organ donation waiting list and, on average, every 18 hours one of them will die waiting for the call that never comes.

The encouraging news is that more people are making the decision to “donate life.” About 4.7 million Pennsylvanians have said yes to organ and tissue donation by adding the donor designation on their driver’s license. More than 138 million Americans are registered donors.

In addition, Pennsylvania driver’s license and ID card holders can support organ donation programs with a $1 donation at the time of application or renewal. To date, nearly $14 million has been generously donated to the fund.

More information is available by clicking here.

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

I worked while I was pregnant with both my children.....That rule may just encourage some public assistance people to stay pregnant...