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Thursday, July 30, 2020

Capitol Update by Rep. Martin Causer

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Capitol Update
Thursday, July 30, 2020 The latest news from the State Capitol
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Compliance with Wolf, Levine Orders Not Sustainable for PA Bars, Restaurants

Click here to view video.

Earlier this week, owners of the state’s restaurants, bars and taverns told members of the House Majority Policy Committee, which I chair, the industry cannot survive the governor’s extreme COVID-19 restrictions on indoor dining and bar seating.

On July 15, the governor and Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine issued a statewide order that required restaurants, bars and taverns to reduce their operations to just 25% capacity for indoor dining, while any bars or nightclubs that only serve alcoholic beverages and no food had to close completely. Restaurants are not permitted to use bar seating and drinks can only be served when customers also purchase a meal. The administration has even gone so far as to define what constitutes a meal.

The four-hour hearing featured testimony from business owners and advocates from the PA Restaurant and Lodging Association, the PA Licensed Beverage and Tavern Association, and the PA Federation of Fraternal and Social Organizations. In addition to outlining negative impacts the orders have had on their businesses, several testifiers also offered suggestions to try to help the industry through the pandemic.

McKean County restaurant owner Riki Tanaka was among the testifiers and shared how his businesses have been impacted and what he has done to try to keep his restaurants open.

Video of the full hearing is available here.

Or read more here.                                                                          

Bowing to Pressure, Governor Allows Transparency Bill to Become Law

After threatening multiple times to veto legislation to ensure Right-to-Know (RTK) requests are handled promptly during times of emergency, the governor has allowed House Bill 2463 to become law without his signature.

While it’s disappointing the governor would not enthusiastically sign a bill designed to improve openness and transparency at a time when it is so desperately needed, and even more disappointing that he characterizes the legislation as “thoughtless” and “foolish,” the end result is that the bill is law and members of the public, media and Legislature are finally empowered to get the information we need about how decisions are being made in response to the pandemic.

Act 77 of 2020 enjoyed unanimous, bipartisan support in both the House and Senate, as well as the backing of media outlets across the Commonwealth.
Bringing More Jobs, Opportunities to PA

Legislation to establish a Local Resource Manufacturing Tax Credit to attract private investment and create jobs in the Commonwealth was signed into law last week.

The tax credits will be available to entities that invest in the construction and operation of Pennsylvania manufacturing facilities that use dry natural gas to produce fertilizer and other petrochemical products. The credit would be applied against 20% of a qualified company’s annual tax liabilities.

To qualify, a company would have to invest at least $400 million in the construction of a new manufacturing facility, create 800 new and permanent jobs, pay prevailing wages and benefits, and use carbon capture and sequestration technology when economically feasible. One estimate indicates 4,400 jobs and more than $1.6 billion in economic benefits would be generated from the construction of four manufacturing facilities as provided for in the legislation.

The measure is part of the House Republican GoodJobs4PA Initiative.
Reminder: Veterans Assistance Available

Working to ensure area veterans receive the services and support they need, a representative of the American Legion will be available at my offices in Bradford, Coudersport and Kane in August to discuss issues such as compensation, education, pension, health care and death benefits.

The schedule is as follows:
  •   Kane office: Wednesday, Aug. 5, and Wednesday, Aug. 26, from 9 a.m. to noon. The Kane office is located at 55 Fraley St. Please call 814-837-0880 to schedule an appointment.
  •   Coudersport office: Thursday, Aug. 6, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Coudersport office is located at 107 S. Main St. Please call 814-274-9769 to schedule an appointment.
  •   Bradford office: Wednesday, Aug. 12, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Bradford office is located at 78 Main St., first floor. Please call 814-362-4400 to schedule an appointment.

You need not be a member of the American Legion to participate.
PennDOT Wants to Hear from You

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is seeking motorists’ input on traffic safety and driving behaviors through its annual online Highway Safety Survey. The results help the agency gauge attitudes on highway safety and adjust safety activities to help further reduce crashes and fatalities.

The survey is available on PennDOT’s website through Aug. 17 and should take about five minutes to complete. All responses, including the “comments” fields, are anonymous. The survey is available here.

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Question has anyone seen the sign across from sheetz " trump 2020. vote early, vote often." how many times can you vote? RIGHT.