|Concealed Carry and Gun Safety Seminar
I will host another Concealed Carry and Gun Safety Seminar on Thursday, Nov. 16, from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the Goodwill Fire Company, 299 W. Washington Ave. in Myerstown.
The featured speaker will be attorney Joshua Prince, who will discuss Pennsylvania’s concealed carry laws. There may be other speakers as well.
Space is limited. Please RSVP by Thursday, Nov. 9.
Registration is available online at RepDiamond.com, by calling my district office at (717) 277-2101, or via email at Jweister@pahousegop.com.
Seeking to Exempt EMS Personnel from Jury Duty
I have introduced legislation that would exempt emergency services personnel from jury duty in an effort to not compromise public safety.
I believe that our dedicated emergency services folks should be available at all times to respond to threats to public health and safety. Granted, jury duty is a public service, but the volunteer fire and emergency service technicians are charged with saving lives, many times in an immediate fashion. This exemption from jury service should become law so that we will have all of our first-responders ready to go at a moment’s notice.
This bill is needed because it is a commonsense provision to aid in the protection of our communities.
House Bill 1837 is awaiting committee assignment.
Preventing Illegals from Using Welfare Benefits
To help prevent the fraudulent use of public assistance benefits, the House passed legislation this week to further crack down on welfare fraud by requiring proper documentation of citizenship and residency when applying for local and state benefits.
Under House Bill 1095, individuals who apply for benefits directly must provide an acceptable form of identification, or an affidavit certifying their citizenship. The bill would not change any eligibility criteria for the receipt of public benefits. It merely would update Pennsylvania law to ensure compliance with federal law.
The bill would also prohibit individuals from possessing multiple ACCESS cards. Any person who violates this prohibition would be charged with a third-degree felony.
House Bill 1095 now goes to the state Senate.
Celebrate PA Manufacturers
Pennsylvania Manufacturing Week will be observed Sept. 30 through Oct. 6, and will recognize the vital role manufacturers play in our state’s economy and the variety of job opportunities and career paths open to the next generation of Pennsylvania’s workforce.
In total, manufacturing has an economic impact of $84 billion, and is the eighth largest manufacturing industry in the United States.
Throughout the week, Pennsylvania manufacturers and partners will hold events to give students and their families an inside look at today’s modern manufacturing. The weeklong celebration will conclude with National Manufacturing Day on Oct. 6. More information about the industry and events are available here.
Pennsylvania Manufacturing Week and Manufacturing Day are part of a movement to build positive perceptions about manufacturing, draw attention to the variety of career opportunities available, and highlight the industry’s important contributions to our economy.
In helping to promote manufacturing, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives has spearheaded a new law to allow career and technical students to demonstrate proficiency on exams developed by the National Occupational Competency Testing Institute in lieu of demonstrating proficiency on a Keystone Exam. Act 6 of 2017 gives them greater flexibility in meeting high school graduation requirements so they can be ready to enter the workforce.
September Named Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
A House resolution designating September 2017 as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month passed the House of Representatives this summer with unanimous, bipartisan support.
House Resolution 382 is intended to bring awareness to childhood cancer, to encourage young Pennsylvanians who are fighting cancer, and to honor young people who have lost their lives to childhood cancer. The resolution also expresses gratitude to the doctors and nurses who provide special care to patients and families affected by childhood cancer and encourages all residents in this Commonwealth to join the fight against childhood cancer.
According to the American Cancer Society, childhood cancers make up less than 1 percent of all cancers diagnosed each year. An estimated 10,270 new cases are expected to be diagnosed in children under the age of 15 in the United States this year. Childhood cancer rates have been slightly increasing for the past few decades.
Because of major treatment advances in recent decades, more than 80 percent of children with cancer now survive five years or more. Overall, this is a significant increase since the mid-1970s, when the five-year survival rate was less than 60 percent. Still, survival rates vary depending on the type of cancer and other factors.
Although pediatric cancer death rates have decreased by nearly 70 percent over the past four decades, it still remains the leading cause of death from disease among children. About 1,190 children are expected to die from cancer in 2017.