Latest Pennsylvania State General Assembly News

Republicans aim new bills at shutdowns of schools, athletics

Aug. 10, 2020 7:36 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Republican state lawmakers in Pennsylvania say they want to give parents more power to let their children repeat a year of schooling if they feel their child didn't get the education they needed or missed out on a year of athletics amid shutdowns during the pandemic. Rep. Jesse...

Lawmakers hear schools face range of challenges in reopening

Aug. 5, 2020 1:30 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania state lawmakers heard about the slew of challenges ahead when schools reopen during a pandemic, as two days of hearings that ended Wednesday offered little reason for optimism. In hours of testimony before the House Education Committee, school officials and other experts...

House speakers get reprieve from criminal history plaques

Jul. 29, 2020 1:37 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The portraits of three former Pennsylvania House speakers who went to prison on corruption-related charges have received a reprieve of sorts. In one of his last acts in office, Mike Turzai, who in June resigned from his post as House speaker and his House seat, quietly ordered the...

FILE - In this Feb. 27, 2020 file photo, former state Sen. Mike Folmer leaves the Lebanon County courthouse, in Lebanon, Pa.  Folmer is headed to county jail for possession of child pornography in a case that prompted him to resign and plead guilty. Folmer, a Republican who represented a district in Lebanon County, spoke in court Tuesday, July 21 before being sentenced to one to two years in county jail.  (Dan Gleiter/The Patriot-News via AP, File)

Ex-state Sen. Folmer gets jail in child porn possession case

Jul. 21, 2020 12:01 PM EDT

LEBANON, Pa. (AP) — A former Pennsylvania lawmaker was sentenced to jail on Tuesday for possession of child pornography in a case that prompted him to resign from the state Senate and plead guilty. Mike Folmer, a Republican who represented a district in Lebanon County, spoke in court before getting one to...

Lawmakers move to limit a governor's disaster powers

Jul. 15, 2020 8:49 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The Republican-controlled Legislature on Wednesday completed the first step in lawmakers' drive to amend Pennsylvania's constitution and strip future governors of some of their authority under emergency declarations. The Senate approved it, 33-17, a day after the House. The measure...

Republicans mount new challenge to governor's pandemic power

Jul. 14, 2020 6:18 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The Republican-controlled Legislature on Tuesday mounted another effort to strip some emergency disaster powers from Gov. Tom Wolf, as well as future governors, in the latest partisan fight over how the Democrat has handled the coronavirus pandemic in Pennsylvania. The House of...

First George Floyd-inspired bills become law in Pennsylvania

Jul. 14, 2020 11:24 AM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The first bills passed by Pennsylvania’s Legislature in response to widespread protests over police brutality and the killing of George Floyd became law Tuesday with Gov. Tom Wolf's signature. The two bills, which passed the House and Senate unanimously last month, are...

Vetoed petrochemical tax break bill revived in Pennsylvania

Jul. 12, 2020 4:42 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania state lawmakers could vote on legislation this week that provides millions of dollars in tax breaks to turn natural gas into fertilizer and other chemicals, emerging from closed-door negotiations after Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed a similar bill earlier this year, officials...

First police-reform bills after protests go to governor

Jun. 30, 2020 5:52 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf will sign the first bills passed by Pennsylvania’s Legislature in response to widespread protests over police brutality and the killing of George Floyd, his office said Tuesday. The Senate passed the bills unanimously after the House passed both unanimously last...

Pennsylvania lawmakers begin passing police reform bills

Jun. 24, 2020 5:48 PM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's House and Senate began passing legislation Wednesday spurred by widespread protests over police brutality and the killing of George Floyd, including legislation designed to prevent “bad apples” from continuing to find employment in police departments. All...