Tuesday, August 02, 2005

H.R. 319: Calling for Specified Trade Protection

H.R. 319, P.N. 2033 (GRUITZA) - This resolution, citing “unfair trade practices” concerning Chinese pipe and tube importing, urges the President and Congress of the United States to utilize the China-specific safeguard provision of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended by the U.S.-China Relations Act of 2000, to prevent the dumping of steel pipes, tubes, and fittings on United States markets.

H.B. 1526: Providing for Deliquency Charges within the Consumer Discount Company Act

H.B. 1526, P.N. 1859 (GEIST) – This bill would amend the act of April 8, 1937 (P.L. 262, No. 66), known as the Consumer Discount Company Act.
This bill would supplement existing language in the Consumer Discount Company Law by providing for a delinquency charge of the greater of $20 or 10% of each payment or contract which is in default for more than 15 days.

H.B. 1509: Land Transfer in Westmoreland County

H.B. 1509, P.N. 1843 (TANGRETTI) - This bill would authorize the Department of General Services to grant to the F&L Group, Inc. an easement in Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County, in exchange for improvements on Commonwealth land for the benefit of SCI-Greensburg. The improvements include paving, a privacy fence, and water and sewage connections.

H.B. 1580: Delegating Regulatory Responsibility of Antlered Livestock Operations to the Dept. of Agriculture; Expanding Cervidae Operation Licensing

H.B. 1580, P.N. 1981 (PHILLIPS) - This bill would amend Title 3 (Agriculture).
The bill declares that cervidae (antlered) livestock operations are agricultural enterprises and designates the Department of Agriculture as the agency responsible for regulating all aspects of cervidae livestock operations (cervids behind fences). Additionally, the types of free licenses for which an owner of cervidae livestock may apply is expanded to three classes of license: Hobby, Breeding and Ranch.

H.R. 299: Studying Early Retirement Proposals

H.R. 299, P.N. 1893 (DALEY) – This resolution would direct the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to perform a study of early retirement proposals.
This resolution cites a lack of study in this particular field. The Legislative Budget and Finance Committee is requested to analyze H.B. 130, P.N. 631 (2005), and H.B. 131, P.N. 632 (2005) as they both pertain to retirement enhancements for state employees and public school teachers.

H.B. 1427: Amending Local Tax Law

H.B. 1427, P.N. 1737 (DENLINGER) – This bill would amend the act of December 31, 1965 (P.L. 1257, No. 511), known as the Local Tax Enabling Act.
This bill would further providing for collection of taxes, audits of earned income taxes, earned income taxes, suits for tax collection, penalties and delinquent tax collection costs.

H.B. 600: Providing Tax Credits for Employers of Active Military Personnel

H.B. 600, P.N. 673 (NAILOR) – This bill would amend the act of March 4, 1971 (P.L. 6, No. 2), known as the Tax Reform Code of 1971.
This bill would provide for military tax credits for employers who pay or subsidize the wages of an employee called to active duty.

H.B. 522: Expanding the Definition of Gifts which Public Officials Need to Publicly Record

H.B. 552, P.N. 600 (STERN) – A00890 (TANGRETTI) - This bill would amend the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.343, No.176), known as The Fiscal Code.
This bill would further provide for unclaimed property, in this case, gift cards. This legislation does not apply to gift certificates or gift cards issued by a restaurant.

H.B. 519: Expanding the Definition of Property Subject to Sales Tax

H.B. 519, P.N. 568 (VEON) – This bill would amend the act of March 4, 1971 (P.L. 6, No. 2), known as the Tax Reform Code of 1971.
This bill would expand the already existent definition of sales of tangible property within this State to include sales in which property is shipped from within this State and the purchaser is the Federal Government or the taxpayer is not taxed in the state of the purchaser.

H.B. 338: Repealing a Telecommunications Tax

H.B. 338, P.N. 359 (SCAVELLO) – A00126 (SCAVELLO) - This bill would amend the act of March 4, 1971 (P.L. 6, No. 2), known as the Tax Reform Code of 1971.
This bill would repeal the gross receipts tax on wireless telecommunications on January 1, 2006.

H.B. 1648: Changing Eligibility for and Compensation of District Attorneys

H.B. 1648, P.N. 2076 (O’BRIEN) – This bill would amend the act of August 9, 1955 (P.L. 323, No. 130), known as The County Code.
This bill would make changes regarding the eligibility and service requirements and the compensation level for district attorneys in third through eighth class counties. This bill would also make the position of District Attorney within third through seventh (and depending upon certain criteria, eighth) class counties a full-time occupation. Additionally, the following standards would be established for District Attorney eligibility: an increased minimum age from 18 to 25; required admission to the bar at least one year prior to serving as a district attorney; and a two-year requirement of residency in the county of election or appointment prior to taking office.

H.B. 1597: Requiring Registration of Personal Care Residences

H.B. 1597, P.N. 2003 (WALKO) – This bill would enact the Personal Care Resident Registration Act.
This bill would require any personal care residence, defined as a private residence providing care to 3 or less care-dependent persons who are not related to the owner, excluding domiciliary care, to register annually with the Department of Public Welfare. Initial registration would include background checks of all non-care-dependent adults in the residence. This information would be made available to care-dependent persons (or their representatives) living in the residence or considering moving to the residence. This bill would also authorize the Department of Public Works to inspect the residence.

H.B. 1578: Providing for the Offense of Neglect of a Care-Dependent Person

H.B. 1578, P.N. 1979 (GINGRICH) – This bill would amend Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses).
This bill would further provide for the offense of neglect of a care-dependent person, and create the offense of abuse of a care-dependent person. This bill would require the Departments of Aging, Health and Public Welfare to make reports to local law enforcement or the Attorney General when there is reasonable cause to believe a violation has occurred.

H.B. 1525: Removing a Requirement for Hotel Liquor Licensing

H.B. 1525, P.N. 1858 (HARHART) – This bill would amend the act of April 12, 1951 (P.L. 90, No. 21), known as the Liquor Code.
This bill would provide that, upon application and inspection by the Liquor Control Board, hotel liquor licensees will no longer be required to maintain bedrooms for public accommodation.

H.B. 446: Requirements for the Importation of Foreign Liquor

H.B. 446, P.N. 485 (PETRI) – This bill would amend the act of April 12, 1951 (P.L. 90, No. 21), known as the Liquor Code.
This bill would require that all liquor imported from foreign countries into this Commonwealth enter through ports located in-State.

H.B. 93: Providing Incentive to Individuals to Insure Against the Costs of Providing for their Long-term Care Needs

H.B. 93, P.N. 87 (SATHER) – This bill would enact the Long-Term Care Partnership Program Act to be administered by the Insurance Department, Department of Aging, and Department of Public Welfare.
This bill would provide incentives for individuals to insure against the costs of providing for their long-term care needs, provide a mechanism for individuals to qualify for coverage of the cost of their long-term care needs under Medical Assistance without first being required to substantially exhaust their resources, provide counseling services to individuals planning for their long-term care needs, and alleviate the financial burden on the State’s Medical Assistance Program by encouraging the pursuit of private initiatives

H.R. 43: Amending the Social Security Act to Provide for Long-term Caregivers

H.R. 43, P.N. 168 (BISHOP) – This resolution would recommend that the Congress of the United States amend the Social Security Act to provide benefits for long-term caregivers.
Recognizing the economic burden with which long-term caregivers struggle while caring for their loved ones, this resolution urges Congress to provide for assistance.

H.B. 493: Providing for a County Records Improvement Fund

H.B. 493, P.N. 532 (PISTELLA) – This bill would amend the act of June 12, 1919 (P.L. 476, No. 240), known as the Second Class County Recorder of Deeds Fee Law.
This bill establishes a County Records Improvement Fund and five dollar charge for each document recorded by the recorder of deeds. The fee would be in addition to the “regular” fee charged by a recorder of deeds. 60% of the additional fee shall go towards a independent fund that will be used to develop and improve office records management and systems in the office of recorder or deeds. The remaining 40% of the money raised by the fee will be used to fund the County Records Improvement Fund, which will be used to bring to standards the management capabilities of all counties. Each county shall establish a County Records Improvement Committee charged with assessing the records management capabilities and records management needs of each office and developing recommendations to the county council.

H.B. 372: Establishing Residency Requirements for New Appointments to Public Offices

H.B. 372, P.N. 399 (CAPPELLI) – This bill would amend the act of June 3, 1931 (P.L. 932, No. 317), known as The Third City Class Code.
This bill establishes that any appointee to a vacancy of a public office must have resided within the city for at least one year continuously immediately prior to the appointment.

H.R. 307: Commemorating the Lillian Marrero Memorial Library in Philadelphia

H.R. 307, P.N. 1927 (CRUZ) – This resolution would urge the City of Philadelphia to name the branch of the Free Philadelphia on Lehigh Avenue the Lillian Marrero Memorial Library.
This resolution honors Lillian Marrero, who was employed as a librarian for 13 years at the Lehigh Avenue branch of the Free Library in Philadelphia. Her exemplary service and special interest in helping children, teenagers and the underprivileged made her an invaluable asset to the community.

H.B. 1413: Providing Economic Incentives to Animal Waste Recycling Facilities

H.B. 1413, P.N. 1701 (CALTAGIRONE) – This bill would enact the Animal Waste Recycling Act. In doing so, this bill would amend the act of March 4, 1971 (P.L. 6, No 2), known as the Tax Reform Code of 1971.
This bill would create economic incentives to spur development of animal waste recycling facilities. Three types of incentives would be authorized: an investment tax credit of up to 75% of the initial cost of the facility, the creation of a special fund to provide low-interest loans to animal waste recycling facilities, and an exemption from the sales and use tax on electricity sold or consumed by the facility.

H.R. 88: Commissioning a Sewage Management and Treatment Task Force

H.R. 88, P.N. 560 (HUTCHINSON) – This resolution would create a joint (House/Senate) task force to study sewage management and treatment issues.
The task force would have three specific missions: determining how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2000 Clean Water Needs Survey applies to the Commonwealth, assessing the ability of treatment plants to meet the compliance goals established in the survey, and identifying how the use of new and innovative technologies can be used to help meet these goals. An advisory committee would be established to assist the task force.

H.R. 326: Encouraging Congress to Increase Funding for the Federal Leaking Underground Storage Tank Fund

H.R. 326, P.N. 2040 (ADOLPH) – This resolution would encourage Congress to release additional funds to the states from the federal Leaking Underground Storage Tank Fund.
This resolution notes that Pennsylvanian distributors and tank owners contribute almost $5 million more to the fund than Pennsylvania received from the fund. Congress is urged to adjust their funding formula.

H.B. 1108: Providing Financial Assistance to Homeowners for Water and Sewage System Related Expenses

H.B. 1108, P.N. 1270 (RUBLEY) – This bill would amend the act of March 1, 1988 (P.L. 82, No. 16) known as the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority Act.
This bill would establish the Water and Wastewater System Connection Funding Program, a financial assistance program, to provide grants and low-interest loans to homeowners for tapping or facilities extension fees and eligible costs related to installation of water or sewage laterals for homes constructed prior to installation of publicly or privately owned water or sewer systems as part of an upgrading or reconstruction project.

H.B. 1419: Providing Additional Payments to Private Residential Rehabilitation Institutions

H.B. 1419, P.N. 1707 (PETRONE) – This bill would amend the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L. 30, No. 14), known as the Public School Code of 1949.
This bill provides additional payments to Private Residential Rehabilitation Institutions (PRRI’s) for reimbursement of indirect special education costs.

H.B. 1408: Classifying the Offense of Improperly Spending Bond Proceeds

H.B. 1408, P.N. 1974 (SCHRODER) - This bill adds new Section 641 (relating to Improper Use of Bond Proceeds) to the Public School Code of 1949 (P.L. 30, No. 14)
The bill classifies knowingly or recklessly authorizing the improper use of bond proceeds as a misdemeanor. The bill also provides the Attorney General and district attorneys with the authority to investigate and bring charges relating to improper use of bond proceeds. Lastly, the bill mandates all state agencies or departments to report reasonably-suspected violations of this provision to the Attorney General or local law enforcement agencies.

H.B 876: Making Education Support Grants Payable Only to Educational Service Providers

H.B. 876, P.N. 999 (SCHRODER) – This bill would amend the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L. 30, No. 14), known as the Public School Code of 1949.
This bill amends the Public School Code to provide for procedural changes for the reimbursement process of educational support services grants, by making educational support grants payable only to the provider of these services, not the parent or guardian. This would hope to limit the opportunity for fraud on the part of the parent or guardian.

H.B. 1222: Increasing School District Information Listed on the State Report Card

H.B. 1222, P.N. 1435 (STAIRS) - This bill would amend the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L. 30, No. 14), known as the Public School Code of 1949.
This bill adds information to be reported on schools and school districts for the report known as the State Report Card. Among the new statistics added will be the following: the number of schools achieving and not achieving yearly progress targets, the number of schools meeting specific target performances in different areas of study, the number of schools with higher levels of newly enrolled students, and the number of schools with significant levels of students with limited English proficiency.

S.B. 147: Requiring the Dept. of Education to Provide Technical Assistance to Schools that Do Not Meet Adequate Yearly Progress Targets

S.B. 147, P.N. 132 (RHOADES) - This bill would amend the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L. 30, No. 14), known as the Public School Code of 1949.
This bill amends the Public School Code of 1949 to require the Department of Education provide technical assistance to schools that do not meet adequate yearly progress (AYP) targets and to establish a clearinghouse of information for these school districts.

S.B. 158: Land Transfer in Erie

S.B. 158, P.N. 704 (Earll) – This bill would transfer responsibility of almost six miles of State Route 4018 to the city of Erie and four miles of Bayfront Parkway (from Lincoln Ave east to Sixth Street) to the Commonwealth, pending the approval of Erie’s city council.
This bill calls for the city council’s approval to be reported to PennDOT within 14 days and for the Department of Transportation to publish notice of the approval to the Legislative Reference Bureau within 30 days.

H.B. 1281: Memorializing the Timberwolves Memorial Highway in Snyder County

H.B. 1281, P.N. 1585 (Harris) – This bill would designate a portion of State Route 104 as the Timberwolves Memorial Highway.
The portion of State Route 104 within Snyder County, between State Route 45 and the Snyder-Union County Line, would be designated as the Timberwolves Memorial Highway in honor of the 104th Infantry Division of the U.S. Army. The 104th participated in campaigns in Western Europe during World War II and sustained heavy casualties. The bill would also authorize the erection of signs that would display the designation.

H.R. 4: Calling for Examination of Funding Allocations Based on PA Population Shifts and Client Growth

H.R. 4, P.N. 443 (Petri) – This resolution cites the need for the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to examine how new shifts in population and client growth call for the reconsideration of the manner in which State aid is distributed.
This bill would charge the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee with the tasks of studying existing State aid formulas, analyzing population-based and client-based aid funding formulas, and determining how to best incorporate these findings into the development of updated State aid formulas.

H.B. 1522: Altering Municipalitiy Requirements for Construction Code Officials and Third Party Agencies

H.B. 1522, P.N. 1855 (Creighton) – This bill would amend the Pennsylvania Construction Code Act (November 10, 1999; P.L. 491, No 45)
Regarding permitted municipality administration and enforcement of the act, proposed changes would require all municipalities to enlist the services of an increased minimum of at least three construction code officials or third-party agencies. Municipalities that employ the use of departmental reviews and inspections need only enlist the services of two other third-party agencies.

H.B. 1468, S.B. 596: Land Transfer in Beaver County

H.B. 1468, P.N. 1786 (Ramaley)
S.B. 596, P.N. 616 (Lavalle)

– This would create an Act for a Conveyance in Abridge Borough. This bill would authorize, with the approval of the Governor and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, the Department of General Services to accept a 0.07 acre tract of land in the Borough of Ambridge, Beaver County donated to the Commonwealth by Harmonie Associates, Inc.

H.B. 1048: Amending Municipal Pension

H.B. 1048, P.N. 1204 (O’Neill) – This bill would amend the Municipal Police Pension Law (1955 P.L. 1804, No. 600)
Regarding pension funds and annuities for local and regional police departments, proposed is an amendment that would raise the monthly limit of existing pension plans for length of service increments after five years of completed service exceeding twenty-five years from $100 to $500. Lastly, provisions of the act which provide that pensions shall be computed at one half of the monthly average salary shall not apply to departments under a home-rule charter that provide pensions in an amount greater than half of the monthly average salary.

H.B. 469: Altering Absentee Ballot Eligibility

H.B. 469, P.N. 508 (E. Z. Taylor) – This would amend the Pennsylvania Election Code, Act 320 of 1927, P.L. 1333. This bill would provide that those who become, on or after the first Friday before an election or a primary, unable to appear at their polling place due to either physical disability or unforeseeable obligation are entitled to absentee ballots.
Such electors would be required to complete and file with the court of common pleas in the county in which they are eligible to vote the information pertinent to an Emergency Application. Upon confirmation of voter eligibility, the elector would be issued an absentee ballot which, upon completion, must be marked prior to 8:00 P.M. on the day of the election.

H.B. 138: Altering the Definition of Comparative Negligence

H.B. 138, P.N. 139 (Turzai) – This bill would amend Title 42 (Judicial and Judicial Procedure) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes by repealing and then reinstating law regarding comparative negligence

H.B. 1650: One Day Tourist Fish License

H.B. 1650, P.N. 2489 (B.Smith) This bill provides for a one day tourist license, at the cost of $25, to be issued without regard to requirements for special permits, including trout and salmon permits.

H.B. 1528: Eliminating the Annual Taxidermy Licensing Fee

H.B. 1528, P.N. 1877 (Wilt) - This would amend Title 34 (Game).
This bill would eliminate the licensing and associated annual fee of taxidermy.

H.B. 1320: Illegalizing the Sale, Possession, or Release of the Snakehead Fish

H.B. 1320, P.N. 1568 (Reichley) - This would amend Title 30 (Fish).
This bill would restrict the sale, possession, importation, or release of snakehead fish. This bill would also establish the violation of this policy as a misdemeanor of the third degree.

H.B. 994: Barring Commonwealth from Decreasing Special Education Funding to any School District

H.B. 994, P.N. 1140 (STAIRS) This would require the Commonwealth to pay each school district for special education either the same amount as the previous year, or an amount equal to:
The district’s market value divided by either a.) the personal income aid ratio or b.) .5, whichever is the larger denominator; the product of which would be multiplied by the district’s expenditures on special education programs (including related costs such as salaries, maintenance services, books, and supplies related to special education, but not including administrative instructional support, pupil personnel, appraisal services, psychological testing, speech pathology and audio services, supervision speech pathology and audio services, social work services, computer assisted instruction services, instruction and curriculum development services, instruction staff development services, legal services, principal office services, medical services, nursing services, transportation services, and staff development) three years prior to the year in which expenditures are to be made.

H.B. 692: Increase of Compulsory School Age to 18 (Excluding Home-Schooled Students)

H.B. 692, P.N. 785 (E.Z. TAYLOR) This would amend the Public School Code, Act 14 of 1949, P.L. 30.
This would increase the compulsory school age until reaching age 18, an increase from current law setting this age at upon reaching age 17. The compulsory school age requirement would not apply to a student in a home education program who has completed graduation requirements as demonstrated to the School District Superintendent.

H.B. 256: Universal Diabetes Screening Test

H.B. 256, P.N. 279 (CRAHALLA) This would amend the Public School Code, Act 14 of 1949, P.L. 30.
This would add to the list of health services provided to every school child a screening test for diabetes.

H.B. 740: Municipal Retirement

H.B. 740, P.N. 831 (DALLY) This would amend the Pennsylvania Municipal Retirement Law, Act 15 of 1974, P.L. 34.
This would extend crediting and purchasing municipal retirement benefits, which under current law are limited to members of the military service during war, armed conflict, and National emergencies, for all military service.

H.B. 1446: Home-Based and Community-Based Services Accountability

H.B. 1446, P.N. 1744 (GINGRICH) This would create the Home-Based and Community-Based Services Accountability Act.
A home-based and community-based services manager would be required to privately meet a consumer at least once a month, without the presence of the provider or any other person, although a registered nurse would be permitted to be present.
A care manager would at least annually review and determine such a customer’s services and care plan.
The Area Agency on Aging would have overall responsibility for such a customer’s care management and would coordinate supportive customer services.
A provider would be required to obtain a criminal history record and a communicable disease screening of an employee. Both types of record would be required to be updated every five years.
No provider or employee would be allowed to be appointed a guardian of a consumer, act under a power of attorney for a consumer, be a beneficiary of a consumer’s insurance policy or annuity, or serve as executor a consumer’s estate.

H.B. 1370: Cognitive Impairment Support Services Certification

H.B. 1370, P.N. 1658 (WOJNAROSKI) This would create the Cognitive Impairment Support Services Certification Act.
The Aging Department would certify a qualified person with a cognitive impairment services certificate. To become a qualified, a person would complete a court on caring for a person with cognitive impairment within an adult daily living center in addition to required training and staff orientation.
The Aging Department and the Public Welfare Department would create rules and regulations to providing a facility with a cognitive impairment support services certificate. The procedures such rules and regulations would cover would include admission, discharge, and transfer of clients with cognitive impairment, availability of wandering space, provision of therapeutic activities, physical design, safety requirements, electronic monitoring, staffing, and notification procedures when a resident with cognitive impairment wanders away from the facility. In order for a facility to receive a cognitive impairment support services certificate, the facility administrators would have to be so certified. An administrator would be required to demonstrate proficiency in diagnosing dementia and related disorder, communication techniques, knowledge of behavioral symptoms of dementia, conflict avoidance and conflict resolution techniques, dementia care, and knowledge of resources for people with dementia and their families.
Before a certified facility discharges or transfer a client with cognitive impairment, the facility would be required to provide a responsible family member or legal representative with at least 30 days notice of such intent. Such discharge or transfer would require the approval of said family member or legal representative as well as a physician.

H.B. 259:Licensing and Regulation of Adult Living Residences

H.B. 259, P.N. 282 (WATSON). This would create an act concerning the licensing and regulation of adult living residences.
The Intra-Governmental Council on Long Term Care would make recommendations on rules and regulations concerning assisted living residences.
The Public Welfare Department would be the lead agency in licensing and regulating adult living residences. The Department would have the right to inspect, with full access, an assisted living residence. Residences found to be facing health and safety risks would be relocated by the Department in conjunction with appropriate local authorities.
Fees for a license or license renewal of a provider would range from $50 to $500 according to the number of beds. A provisional six month license would be available for a licensee with certain violations that can be corrected during that time.
An administrator of such a facility would be required to complete a minimum of 120 hours of approved instruction, pass a test, and undergo 36 hours of continuing education every two years.