Oct. 22, 2018

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Weekly Roundup
The latest news from the State Capitol
Bill to Curb Welfare Abuse Approved

I proudly cast my vote in support of Senate legislation to ensure public assistance goes to those who truly need it the most.

Specifically, Senate Bill 6 addresses the eligibility of high-level felony drug dealers and non-compliant sex offenders, which were contained in bills that passed the House last session with overwhelming bipartisan support.

The legislation also puts controls on how and where EBT cards can be used. The bill would prevent the cards from being used at casinos and adult entertainment venues. It also requires the Department of Human Services and the Office of Inspector General to work together to detect and root out benefit fraud and requires lottery winnings of more than $600 to be counted as a resource for calculating welfare eligibility.

The bill now goes to the governor for his signature. 

Possible Veto Looms for Work Requirements Bill


Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed legislation that would have ensure those who can work, do work in order to receive Medical Assistance (MA) program benefits. This legislation would have set enabled able-bodied recipients on a path to employment while also receiving assistance. The legislation was written in a manner so as not to negatively impact those who need assistance.

Under the House Bill 2138,
able-bodied MA recipients would have had to work 20 hours a week or complete 12 job training-related activities a month. These requirements are very similar to those imposed on residents who receive benefits through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance programs.  These requirements were originally implemented under President Bill Clinton and have bipartisan support.


The bill also outlined numerous exemptions to ensure our most vulnerable residents aren’t negatively impacted by this legislation. The exemptions include: 


  • Those who are physically disabled.
  • Those who have a mental disability.
  • An individual who is under 19 years of age.
  • Seniors 65 years or older.
  • Pregnant women.
  • Those who are primary caregivers to a dependent child under 6 years of age.
  • Social Security beneficiaries.
  • An individual who experiences a crisis, serious medical condition or temporary condition which prohibits employment, such as domestic violence or a substance use disorder.
  • Those who are the primary caregiver for a person who is permanently disabled or in hospice.
    For more information about the bill, click here
    Honoring our Veterans

    It was my privilege to join a representative from U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey’s office to honor two Korean War veterans – Earl L. Nicholas (left) and William H. Dangro (right) – who are residents of the 92nd District last week at the VA Hospital in Lebanon. These brave men received the Korean Ambassador for Peace Medal. Thank you for your service to our great nation, gentlemen. 
    Ensuring Ambulance Companies are Fairly Compensated

    Legislation to require reimbursement to ambulance companies for care provided, even if no transport takes place, is on the governor’s desk following House approval this week.

    This is a major step forward to better support ambulance services on which we rely to help save lives. As soon as an ambulance leaves the station and when emergency responders arrive on scene and use medications or other equipment to treat a patient, there is a cost. Under current law, if the patient declines transport to a hospital, the ambulance company is not reimbursed.

    House Bill 1013, which I voted for, would require private insurers and Medicaid to reimburse for treatment without transport as long as the following conditions are met: The Basic Life Support or Advanced Life Support unit must be dispatched by a county 911 center, and the EMS provider must have provided emergency medical services even though transport was declined.

    Another proposal, which I also supported, to increase Medicaid reimbursement for ambulance calls was incorporated into the 2018-19 state budget. The increases take effect Jan. 1.

    This is great news for ambulance companies, especially those that serve rural areas. 
    Honored to Receive Award

    I was honored with an award from Americans for Prosperity (AFP) because of the A rating I received. The rankings are based on votes on issues such as budgets and spending, corporate welfare, criminal justice reform and labor.

    Pictured with me (left in photo) are AFP-PA Deputy State Director Anna McCauslin and State Director Beth Anne Mumford. 
    Poster Contest Encourages Youth to Know When, Know How

    I want to let children of the 92nd District know they can take part in the state Liquor Control Board’s 27th Annual Alcohol Awareness Poster Contest. This year’s theme is based on the agency’s new alcohol education campaign “Know When, Know How.” This campaign teaches parents how to start a conversation with their children about the dangers of underage drinking.

    The contest is open to all Pennsylvania students in kindergarten through 12th grade, including those who are homeschooled or in private or parochial schools. Students may enter through their schools, clubs, Scout troops or individually.

    Entries must feature a clear no-use message about underage drinking and may be created using any artistic medium. Students are encouraged to use positive messages and images, such as the benefits of being alcohol free or alternatives to underage drinking.

    Several students with winning entries will receive $50, and one student from each grade (K-12) will receive $25. Some of the winning designs may be reproduced in various formats and distributed across Pennsylvania.

    Entries must be postmarked no later than Friday, Nov. 16. For additional information about submission dates, guidelines and prizes, review the contest guidelines and entry form available at lcb.pa.gov under “Education,” then “Poster Contest.” 
    Meeting with Library Officials

    I had the privilege of meeting with the director of the Dillsburg Area Public Library and the Red Land Community Library at the Capitol. I enjoyed hearing about all the programs the libraries offer. Keep up the great work! 
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    Email Address: DKeefer@pahousegop.com