Post Session Report: June 6, 2011

SB1055, PN1191 (Corman): Appropriates the Governor’s requested amount to fund the administrative costs of the State Employees Retirement System (SERS) for the 2011-12 fiscal year. The bill would appropriate $27,320,000 for the general government operations of SERS.  This appropriation is at the Governor’s requested amount contained in his March budget proposal. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 1056, PN 1192 (Corman): Appropriates the Governor’s requested amount to fund the administrative costs of the Public School Retirement System (PSERS) for the 2011-12 fiscal year. The bill would appropriate $44,107,000 for the general government operations of PSERS.  This appropriation is at the Governor’s requested amount contained in his March budget proposal. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 1057, PN 1193(Corman): Makes an appropriation from the Professional Licensure Augmentation Account and from restricted revenue accounts within the General Fund to the Department of State for operations. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 1058, PN 1194 (Corman): Appropriates funds from the Workmen’s Compensation Administration Fund to the Department of Labor and Industry for expenses necessary to administer the Workers’ Compensation Act and the Pennsylvania Occupational Disease Act.. The bill was unanimously approved

SB 1059, PN 1195 (Corman): Appropriates $58,898,000 in state funds from a restricted revenue account within the General Fund.  The total of $3,900,000 in federal funds is appropriated as follows: $1,501,000 for natural gas pipeline safety, $1,888,000 for motor carrier safety, and $511,000 under ARRA for electric regulatory assistance. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 1060, PN 1196 (Corman):Appropriates $5,189,000 from a restricted revenue account within the General Fund to the Office of Consumer Advocate (OCA) in the Office of Attorney General.  The funding for the OCA comes from the assessment on utilities regulated by the PUC. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 1061, PN 1197 (Corman): Appropriates $1,092,000 to the Office of Small Business Advocate in the Department of Community and Economic Development to provide for the operation of that office for Fiscal Year 2011-12. This bill was approved 48-1.

SB 3, PN 218 (D. White): Prohibits health insurance policies sold through the Pennsylvania Health Insurance Exchange from covering elective abortions. Senator Leach offered Amendment A02629, which adds an exclusion to not apply to a qualified health plan offered in PA through a health insurance exchange. This amendment was defeated 16-33. Sen. McIlhinney offered Amendment A02560, which includes treatment of any miscarriage or complication related to a miscarriage. This amendment was approved 49-0 and the bill will be over as amended.

SB 263, PN 240 (Erickson): Amends the statute that created the Independent Regulatory Review Commission. It adds a definition of ‘acceptable data’ and defines it as “Empirical, replicable and testable data as evidenced in supporting documentation, statistics, reports, studies or research.” This legislation would also require a detailed explanation of any data, which is included in proposed regulations. This explanation would need to include how the data was obtained and why the data is acceptable. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 314, PN 1208 (Tomlinson): Adds a section to Vehicle Code that prohibits the operation of a moving vehicle on a highway while using a wireless communication device to send, read or write a text message.  Senator Tomlinson offered Amendment A02372, which clarifies interactive hands free mode communications mode. The amendment was unanimously adopted. Senator Rafferty offered Amendment A02589, which clarifies primary offense for no seat belt under the age of 18 and no hands free-mode for the violation. The amendment was approved 46-3. The bill went over as amended.

SB 460, PN 1163 (Yaw): Amends Act 60 of 1979 that deals with Oil and Gas Leases. The bill would require that whenever payment is made for oil or gas production to an interest owner, certain information shall be included on the check stub or on an attachment, such as the lease identification number and the total barrels of oil or MCF of gas purchased. The bill was unanimously approved.

SB 1054, PN 1190 (Corman): Provides for the Capital Budget Act of 2011-2012. The bill specifies the maximum principal amount of additional debt to be incurred during the 2011-2012 fiscal year for capital projects itemized in a capital projects itemization bill. The bill was unanimously approved.

Executive Nominations

The Senate unanimously approved the following nominations:

Donald R. Yost, State Board of Barber Examiners
Paulette A. Burnside, State Board of Crane Operators
Jason C. Giurintano, State Board of Crane Operators
Ronald G. Henry, Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission
Roger W. Richards, Erie County Convention Center Authority
Timothy R. Thyreen, Board of Directors of the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance
Kimberly D. Cobaugh, State Board of Examiners of Nursing Home Administrators
Robert DeJesus, M.D., State Board of Examiners of Nursing Home Administrators
Margaret Davison Matisko, State Board of Examiners of Nursing Home Administrators
William B. McIlwaine, Ed.D., State Board of Examiners of Nursing Home Administrators
Michael F. Brinkash, PLS, State Registration Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyor
Robert E. Garlitz, PLS, State Registration Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyor
Thomas D. Gillespie, P.G., State Registration Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyor
David Pennoni, P.E., State Registration Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyor
Carol D. Sides, State Registration Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyor
James J. Szalankiewicz, PE, State Registration Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyor
Theresa A. Craley, State Board of Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists and Professional Counselors
Jennifer Easter, MBA, MPH, State Board of Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists and Professional Counselors
Jeane Violon Singer, PhD, State Board of Examiners in Speech-Language & Hearing