HARRISBURG, October 24, 2018 — State Senator John Yudichak (D-Luzerne/Carbon) issued the following statement today after Governor Wolf signed Senate Bill 748, the Public Safety Facilities Act:
“I thank Governor Tom Wolf for signing Senate Bill 748, the Public Safety Facilities Act, into law. The bi-partisan legislation ensures a deliberative and informed process will be exercised by the Commonwealth prior to the closure of any state correctional institution or state police barracks. Our state troopers and our correctional officers perform dangerous jobs under stressful conditions. Their families and the communities they serve deserve to be heard before a public safety facility is closed,” said Senator John Yudichak.
Senate Bill 748, bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senators Argall, Baker, Brooks, Fontana and Yudichak requires the DOC or the PSP to notify state and local stakeholders, including local lawmakers at least three months before a planned facility closure announcement. The DOC or PSP must then provide a thorough review of impacts that the proposed closure could have, which includes holding a public hearing in the county where the facility is located. A written report must be produced detailing the recommendations from the stakeholders to the Governor and leaders of the General Assembly. After the written report is submitted, and the DOC or PSP elects to close a public safety facility, they must announce that closure to federal, state and local elected officials where the facility is located, to the employee labor organizations representing employees of the facility, and to the managerial employees of the public safety facility. A public safety facility may close no sooner than four months from the announcement.