Update on Pennsylvania House lawmakers

    By: Scott Detrow

    This year’s General Assembly session has been underway for about three months. Here is a look at what lawmakers in one of Pennsylvania’s two chambers have been up to.

    By: Scott Detrow
    scott_detrow@pubradionews.net

    This year’s General Assembly session has been underway for about three months. Here is a look at what lawmakers in one of Pennsylvania’s two chambers have been up to.

    Transcript:
    So what exactly has the House of Representatives been doing since gaveling into session in January?

    A lot of attention has been focused on how to spend Pennsylvania’s portion of the federal stimulus package, but committees have been meeting and votes are being cast.

    To date, 1,130 bills have been introduced. 73 of them have reported out of committee. Of those, 36 have cleared the Appropriations Committee, as well, and 21 have been passed by the full House.

    Bob Caton, a spokesman for House Speaker Keith McCall, says some of the legislation has been substantive.

    Caton: “Just last week we passed a bill allowing parents and guardians to extend health insurance benefits to their children up to the age of 29. And given this economic climate, you have a lot of students graduating from college and having to move home and work part time and not have full-time insurance available to them. So this is definitely improving access.”

    Most early votes have been bipartisan, with near-unanimous approval from members. The insurance measure passed 190-2.

    More controversial measures, like Governor Rendell’s video poker proposal, likely won’t be addressed until later on in the session.

    Listen:
    Click on the play button below or right click on this link and choose “Save Link As” to download.

    [audio: reports20090327house.mp3]

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