Thank you for subscribing to my E-newsletter. I am honored to serve the 36th Senatorial District and look forward to working with you toward building a stronger Pennsylvania. This E-newsletter serves to keep you updated on what is happening throughout Lancaster County and what I am doing as your State Senator in Harrisburg – I hope that you find it helpful! Should you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please DO NOT reply to this email; instead, please feel free to contact me here.
In this Update:
Promoting Economic Growth and Attracting New Employers
To make Pennsylvania more economically competitive and ensure it is an attractive place to live and work, I joined my colleagues Sens. Tracy Pennycuick (R-24), Greg Rothman (R-34), and Judy Ward (R-30) to unveil a pro-growth tax reform package of bills.
Senate Bill 345 would quicken the reduction of the commonwealth’s Corporate Net Income (CNI) tax by immediately dropping it to 7.99% and then reducing it an additional point every January until it falls to 4.99%.
To bring family-sustaining jobs to the commonwealth and grow existing Pennsylvania businesses, Senate Bill 346 will gradually increase the Net Operating Loss (NOL) carryover limit from the current 40% to 80% over four years.
Senate Bill 347 will help the commonwealth’s small businesses by allowing them to use the NOL deduction. This accounting tool, which gives small businesses greater control over their financial positions, is already available to large corporations – creating a disparity between the two.
Learn more about this initiative here.
Senate Republicans Announce Priorities and Principles for 2023-24 Session
With the two-year legislative session getting into full swing, I joined colleagues this week in announcing Senate Republican priorities and principles for 2023-24.
Our legislative efforts will be focused on protecting jobs, empowering families and defending freedoms.
Protecting Pennsylvania jobs requires a comprehensive approach that includes ensuring energy independence, promoting workforce development and continued improvement of our infrastructure.
Empowering Pennsylvania families means providing healthy and safe communities, addressing mental and behavioral health needs, and guaranteeing access to high-quality educational opportunities.
Defending freedom means keeping government out of the lives and pockets of citizens as much as possible, and instilling confidence in the electoral process.
Senate Republicans will build on our successful efforts last session that were focused on:
Senate Republican leaders discussed our 2023-24 priorities and principles here.
Join Me for an Open House on March 10
To give community residents the opportunity to meet with my staff and me to discuss any state-related questions or concerns, I will be hosting an open house on Friday, March 10, from 3-6 p.m. The office is located at 301 E. Main St. in Lititz.
The event will also highlight the services offered at my district office, and light refreshments will be available.
Addressing the Student Loan Crisis
For some Pennsylvanians, education is key to their professional success and upward mobility. However, on their journey to being trained for family-sustaining jobs, many people have no choice other than using student loans to finance their education.
At this point, the student loan crisis cannot be ignored. We must address it in a reasonable and feasible manner, one that serves the needs of students, taxpayers, and institutions of higher education alike.
Learn more about my response to the student loan crisis here.
Senate Votes to Restrict Diversion of Transportation Funding
To bolster funding for Pennsylvania’s transportation infrastructure, the Senate passed legislation to restrict the diversion of transportation funding out of the Motor License Fund. The bill now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.
The Motor License Fund obtains revenue from transportation charges, including the gas tax, vehicle registration fees and driver license fees. These funds are required by the Pennsylvania Constitution for the design, construction and maintenance of the state and local highway network. However, a large portion is transferred to the Pennsylvania State Police for statewide highway patrol operations.
Senate Bill 121 dedicates the transportation charges to road and bridge safety projects, while ensuring the Pennsylvania State Police receive reliable, sustainable funding from sources beyond the susceptible Motor License Fund. The bill caps transfers from the Motor License Fund at $250 million in 2023-24 then reduces the transfer by $50 million annually. The bill seeks to end the transfers by 2028-29 and allocate all transportation fees for road and bridge improvements.
Senate Urges President Biden to Restart Keystone XL Pipeline
I joined with Senate colleagues in passing a resolution calling on President Biden to allow completion of the Keystone XL pipeline to create nearly 60,000 jobs and strengthen our energy independence in uncertain times.
Senate Resolution 9 urges the president to restart and expedite the completion of the Keystone XL pipeline, which had its permit canceled through an executive order on his first day in office.
A report from the U.S. Department of Energy showcased that the construction of the pipeline would have generated between 16,149-59,468 jobs annually and contributed $3.4 billion to the United States Gross Domestic Product. Incredibly, while President Biden blocked American jobs, he waived sanctions on the Russian firm responsible for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline between Russia and Germany.
The resolution will now be transmitted to President Biden and members of Congress, including the entire Pennsylvania Congressional delegation.
Welcoming Bear Creek Students to the PA Capitol
State Rep. Tom Jones and I met with fourth grade students from Bear Creek Elementary School in Elizabethtown Area School District to discuss our state government and how it serves its citizens. We’re always happy to host constituents in our beautiful State Capitol building!
Interest-Free Loans Available to Lancaster County Students
Lancaster Dollars for Higher Learning is offering interest-free loans valued between $1,800-$2,000 to those who wish to pursue post-secondary education full-time.
To qualify, students must be residents of Lancaster County and must be attending accredited post-secondary institutions full-time in the 2023-24 academic year. Additionally, students need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students can apply for a maximum of four loans (one each academic year), and the checks are sent directly to the students’ schools to be applied to their tuition expenses.
Loan recipients have a six-month grace period after graduation or withdrawal from school; they must then begin their loan repayment at $110 a month. Students may also choose to pay off their loans early.
Applications will be accepted online here through April 28.
My ‘Face the State’ Segment Covers Important Issues
This week, I appeared on CBS 21’s Face the State.
I appreciated the opportunity to talk with host Joel Smith about social media and mental health, the train derailment in East Palestine, accelerating business tax reductions, and proposed constitutional amendments on voter ID, regulatory process reform, and statute of limitations.
Watch the full video of our discussion here.
Homeowner Septic Program Helps Cover Cost of Septic Systems, Sewer Hook-ups
Functioning on-lot septic systems, laterals and connections to a public sewer system are essential for public health but are expensive to repair or replace.
The Homeowner Septic Program offers affordable loans for the repair or replacement of on-lot septic systems and sewer laterals, or a first-time sewer connection from an existing home. The revamped program now features:
The program is funded and administered by Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST) and the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA).
For more information or to start the PENNVEST application process, homeowners should contact a participating lender or PHFA at 1-855-U-Are-Home (827-3466), then press “0” to be connected with the Customer Solutions Center. Information on the program is also available here. Lenders interested in participating should visit the PHFA website for more details.
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