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What's Happening in the #PAHouse week of Jan. 20, 2020

On Tuesday, Jan. 21, the House returns to session with a focus on bills aimed at addressing human trafficking. Legislation will increase penalties for anyone knowingly patronizing a victim and anyone connected to trafficking victims. Other bills assist victims and aim to increase resources and protections. The package of bills passed through the committee process last week and are scheduled for floor consideration Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Weekly Schedule

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Committee Meetings/Hearings:

Education, 11 a.m., G-50 Irvis Office Building

• Public hearing on HB 1897, which would require full-time cyber education programs in public school districts.

Human Services, 11 a.m., B-31 Main Capitol

• HB 1895 (Rep. David Rowe, R-Union/Snyder): Would amend the Mental Health Procedures Act to protect the rights of people in treatment to be free from abuse, neglect and exploitation.

• HR 344 (Rep. Angel Cruz, D-Philadelphia): Would urge the attorney general to pursue legal actions regarding the opioid crisis.

• HR 642 (Rep. Jeanne McNeill, D-Lehigh): Would direct the Joint State Government Commission to conduct a study to determine ways to better connect survivors of sexual assault and rape to mental health services.

Insurance, 11:30 a.m., 60 East Wing

• Informational meeting on HB 2200, association health care plans reforms.

Environmental Resources and Energy, Call of the Chair, 60 East Wing

• HB 1779 (Rep. Parke Wentling, R-Mercer/Crawford/Erie/Lawrence): Would amend the Dam Safety and Encroachments Act by adding a definition for “Groin Structures” and exempt such structures from Submerged Lands License Agreement fees.

Judiciary, Call of the Chair, G-50 Irvis Office Building

• HB 437 (Rep. Joshua Kail, R-Beaver/Washington): Would update domestic relations law as it relates to contempt powers of the court in custody cases.

• HB 1984 (Rep. Kerry Benninghoff, R-Centre/Mifflin): Would amend the Adoption Act so that victims of rape can terminate parental rights of the rapist without having to re-marry.

• HR 657 (Rep. Barbara Gleim, R-Cumberland): Would designate the week of Feb. 8-15, 2020, as “Court Reporting and Captioning Week” in Pennsylvania.

SESSION:

On Tuesday, session will begin at 1 p.m.

Votes on Second Consideration:

• HB 161 (Rep. Barry Jozwiak, R-Berks): Would reclassify the offense of trafficking of infants as a first-degree felony from a first-degree misdemeanor.

• HB 2174 (Rep. Natalie Mihalek, R-Allegheny/Washington): Would prohibit defendants from introducing evidence of a human trafficking victim’s past sexual victimization and allegations of past sexual victimization in any prosecution related to human trafficking.

• HB 2175 (Rep. Meghan Schroeder, R-Bucks): Would expand the list of sexual offenses whereby an expert may testify in sexual assault cases.

• HB 2176 (Rep. Marci Mustello, R-Butler): Would add certain prohibited activities that, if committed, constitute the crime of unlawful contact with a minor.

• HB 2177 (Rep. Valerie Gaydos, R-Allegheny): Would expand the list of sexual offenses that require offenders to attend and participate in a Department of Corrections program of counseling and therapy designed for incarcerated sex offenders.

• HB 2178 (Rep. David Rowe, R-Union/Snyder): Would amend Pennsylvania’s child custody statute to require that a court consider whether a party or member of that party’s household has been convicted of human trafficking prior to awarding child custody to that party.

• SB 60 (Sen. Kristin Phillips-Hill, R-York): Would increase penalties relating to human trafficking and enhance funding for programs and services for trafficking victims.

• HR 618 (Rep. Wendi Thomas, R-Bucks): Would recognize the month of January 2020 as "National Human Trafficking Awareness Month" in Pennsylvania.

• HR 648 (Rep. Rosita Youngblood, D-Philadelphia): Would recognize the bravery and professionalism of the Philadelphia Police Department during the events of Aug. 14, 2019.

Votes on Third Consideration:

• HB 283 (Rep. Justin Simmons, R-Lehigh/Montgomery/Northampton): Would amend the Right-to-Know Law to permit a state or local agency to charge additional fees for the search, review and duplication of records that have been requested and will be used for a commercial purpose.

• HB 1737 (Rep. Austin Davis, D-Allegheny): Would grant the same protections to land banks that are presently given to redevelopment authorities when they are dealing with brownfields.

• HB 1981 (Rep. Parke Wentling, R-Mercer/Crawford/Erie/Lawrence): Would consolidate statutory language relating to the PA Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) into the History Code.

• HB 2088 (Rep. Pam Snyder, D-Greene/Fayette/Washington): Would designate the Sheriff Brian A. Tennant Memorial Bridge in Greene County, the PFC Joseph Frank Duda Memorial Interchange in Fayette County, and the CPL Denny Ray Easter Memorial Interchange in Fayette County.

• HB 2116 (Rep. Matthew Dowling, R-Fayette/Somerset): Would designate a bridge on a portion of State Route 669 in Somerset County as the Sergeant Stephen M. Minick Memorial Bridge.

• HB 2117 (Rep. Matthew Dowling, R-Fayette/Somerset): Would designate the bridge on a portion of State Route 2004 in Somerset County as the Airman Michael L. Menser Memorial Bridge.

• SB 790 (Sen. Joseph Scarnati, R-Cameron/Clearfield/Clinton/Elk/Jefferson/Mckean/Potter/Tioga): Would create the "Conventional Oil and Gas Wells Act" for the regulation of conventional oil and gas wells.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Committee Meetings/Hearings:

Children and Youth, 9:30 a.m., G-50 Irvis Office Building

• HR 119 (Rep. Brian Kirkland, D-Delaware): Would recognize emotional abuse of children and its deleterious effect on all individuals in this Commonwealth.

• HR 180 (Rep. Jake Wheatley, D-Allegheny): Would call on the Joint State Government Commission to conduct a study of the Commonwealth’s current return on investments regarding after-school programs and provide feedback on developing a means to capture outcomes for the purpose of bolstering return on investments for after-school programs

• HR 320 (Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Philadelphia): Would urge the Department of Human Services to investigate child abuse in all institutional settings and make recommendations.

• HR 641 (Rep. Ryan Mackenzie, R-Lehigh/Berks): Would designate Jan. 23, 2020, as "Maternal Health Awareness Day."

• HR 645 (Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Philadelphia): Would recognize the month of January 2020 as "National Mentoring Month.”

Local Government, Call of the Chair, G-50 Irvis Office Building

• HB 1677 (Rep. Robert Freeman, D-Northampton): Would establish the Tax-exempt Property Municipal Assistance Act.

• HB 2044 (Rep. Kurt Masser, R-Northumberland/Columbia/Montour): Would repeal a 1919 law which states that a public dance or public ball cannot be held in a city of the first, second or third class without a permit from the mayor and paying a fee of $1 for each event.

• HB 2055 (Rep. Pam Snyder, D-Greene/Fayette/Washington): Would allow for the creation of Rural Broadband Authorities.

SESSION:

Votes on Second Consideration:

• HB 1236 (Rep. Todd Polinchock, R-Bucks): Would establish the Smoke Alarm Device Responsibility Act, which would strengthen smoke alarm requirements for leased properties.

• HB 1536 (Rep. Brett Miller, R-Lancaster): Would create new penalties, including driver's license suspensions, for careless driving and reckless driving resulting in the death, serious bodily injury or bodily injury of a vulnerable highway user.

• HB 2039 (Rep. Jason Ortitay, R-Allegheny/Washington): Would amend the Taxpayer-Funded Advertising Transparency Act, which requires certain notifications in media advertising.

• HB 1710 (Rep. Tim Hennessey, R-Chester/Montgomery): Would establish U.S. Semi-quincentennial license plates.

• HB 1711 (Rep. Tim Hennessey, R-Chester/Montgomery): Would establish heritage license plates.

• HB 1712 (Rep. Tim Hennessey, R-Chester/Montgomery): Would establish corporate logo fleet license plates.

• HB 1755 (Rep. David Zimmerman, R-Lancaster): Would require the State Conservation Commission to submit annual reports to the General Assembly.

• HB 2018 (Rep. Gerald Mullery, D-Luzerne): Would authorize the transfer of land at the Plymouth Readiness Center within Plymouth Borough.

• HR 641 (Rep. Ryan Mackenzie, R-Lehigh/Berks): Would designate Jan. 23, 2020, as "Maternal Health Awareness Day."

• HR 645 (Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Philadelphia): Would recognize the month of January 2020 as "National Mentoring Month.”

• HR 644 (Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Philadelphia): Would designate Jan. 19-25, 2020, as “Healthy Weight Week” and Jan. 23, 2020, as “Women’s Healthy Weight Day” in Pennsylvania.

• HR 650 (Rep. Tom Mehaffie, R-Dauphin): Would recognize the 110th Anniversary of the Milton Hershey School.

• HR 658 (Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Philadelphia): Would recognize Jan. 27, 2020, as "International Holocaust Remembrance Day" in Pennsylvania.

Votes on Third Consideration:

• HB 161 (Jozwiak)

• HB 2174 (Mihalek)

• HB 2175 (Schroeder)

• HB 2176 (Mustello)

• HB 2177 (Gaydos)

• HB 2178 (Rowe)

• SB 60 (Phillips-Hill)

All of House session and most committee meetings will stream live on PAHouseGOP.com. Research legislation at this link.