In this Edition
Senate Approves Bill That Helps Students Facing Extended School Absences
Students who face an extended absence from school due to injury or illness can suffer not only academically, but also emotionally due to a lack of interaction with their peers. The Senate recently passed a bill I authored that would use new technology to allow homebound students to participate in classroom activities remotely.
The bill would create a grant program to make telepresence education equipment available to a broader number of students. The equipment – which resembles an I-pad mounted to a Segway – allows students to learn and interact with their classmates in real time.
More information about the bill is available here.
Senate Panel Passes Bill Supporting Volunteer Fire Companies
Volunteer fire companies provide a vital service to our communities by donating their time and energy to protect our lives and property. Unfortunately, these organizations face significant financial challenges due to the cost of new equipment and training.
The Senate Finance Committee unanimously passed a bill last week that I authored to help volunteer fire companies keep more of the funds they generate during fundraising events. The bill would exempt these organizations from paying sales tax on food and beverages sold during fundraisers.
More information about the bill is available here.
Down Syndrome Awareness Day Recognized in Harrisburg
Our region is blessed by many extraordinary individuals who are living enjoyable, meaningful and productive lives with Down syndrome. In honor of all of the ways they make our lives and our communities brighter, I am proud to lead efforts in the General Assembly to recognize their contributions and give them an opportunity to enjoy all life has to offer.
I recently authored a resolution recognizing March 21 as Down Syndrome Awareness Day in Pennsylvania, and I joined my colleagues in support of a bill that would ban abortions on the sole basis of a Down syndrome diagnosis. I plan to introduce similar legislation in the Senate soon.
I was joined by two very special guests in Harrisburg for a news conference regarding this topic: Chloe Kondrich, a young girl from Pittsburgh with Down syndrome who was the inspiration behind passage of Chloe’s Law in 2014, and her friend Mikayla Holmgren, who was the first woman with Down syndrome to compete in a Miss USA pageant.
More information about efforts to celebrate and protect individuals who have Down syndrome is available here.
Collective Bargaining Transparency Bills Introduced
The salaries and benefits of public-sector employees are among the biggest expenses for state and local taxpayers. These expenses are almost always negotiated behind closed doors, robbing taxpayers of the opportunity to see how public officials are negotiating with your tax dollars.
I recently joined with Senator Ryan Aument to introduce legislation that would bring much-needed transparency to the collective bargaining process. Our bills would ensure this information is publicly available through the state’s Sunshine Act and Right To Know Law.
Additional details about the bills are available here.
Telephone Town Hall Covers Property Taxes, Prescription Costs and More
I appreciate the hundreds of community residents who listened in and submitted questions during my telephone town hall on March 18. The discussion included a wide range of topics, including the legalization of recreational marijuana, property tax elimination, prescription drug costs, and many more issues of interest to Lancaster County.
If you missed out on the most recent telephone town hall, click here for audio from the event. As always, feel free to contact me to share your questions and thoughts on the issues facing our communities by clicking here.
A very special thanks to all of the local students who took part in my recent student government seminar at the Capitol Building in Harrisburg. I was very impressed with the creativity and passion that our local students show when discussing issues that affect our community!
Concealed Carry Seminar Scheduled for May 29
On May 29, 2019, I am teaming up with Representative Cutler to host a concealed carry presentation on firearm laws pertaining to concealed carry. The event will be held from 7:00-8:30 p.m. at the Kinzer Fire Company located at 3521 Lincoln Highway East, Kinzer PA. Residents in the 13th Senatorial District can RSVP for the event online at http://www.repcutler.com/ccseminar2019.aspx or by calling my district office at 717-397-1309. Seating is limited so don’t wait to register!
Save the Date: Event Honoring Local Veterans Scheduled for May 30
I look forward to co-hosting at event honoring our local veterans along with Representatives Bryan Cutler and Brett Miller on May 30 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at Millersville VFW Post 7294, located at 219 Walnut Hill Road.
More details about the event will be available in the weeks ahead on my website at www.senatorscottmartinpa.com.
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