Tuesday, October 24, 2017

HB 203, PN 2519 (Longietti) – Amends Title 20 (Probates, Estates and Fiduciaries Code) by increasing the dollar amount of wages, salary or employee benefits that may be paid directly to the family of a decedent, without requiring letters of administration. Specifically, the bill increases the amount from $5,000 to $10,000.  A vote of 50-0 was recorded.

SB 625, PN 702 (Brooks) – This bill requires the POW/MIA flag to be displayed at Commonwealth roadside rest areas and welcome centers where with the United States flag is also displayed.  Senator Brooks offered amendment A04530, which clarifies that the POW/MIA flag may be flown from existing flag poles and that it may be removed when the U.S. flag is flown at half-mast.  The amendment was agreed to via voice vote and the bill went over in its order as amended.

SB 676, PN 1022 (Gordner) – The bill amends the Workers’ Compensation Act to reform the Uninsured Employers Guaranty Fund (UEGF) and strengthen liability and compensation provisions for out-of-state employers.  Senator Gordner offered amendment A04351.  This amendment places limits on wage loss payments when a judge accepts- and finds credible- only the testimony of a claimant (without other supporting evidence) during claim petition proceedings.  The amendment was adopted, 48-2, and the bill went over in its order as amended.

SB 900, PN 1201 (Boscola) – This bill authorizes the transfer of land from Lehigh County to Whitehall Township, Lehigh County.  A vote of 50-0 was recorded.

SB 921, PN 1250 (Browne) – This is a land conveyance bill.  It authorizes the conveyance of land located in Allentown and Bethlehem to TCA Properties for fair market value.  The property was previously used as a state hospital.  A vote of 50-0 was recorded.

SB 827, PN 1050 (Killion) – The bill amends Title 20 by enacting the Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, and providing for user direction, agreements and disclosures of digital assets.  Senator Killion offered amendment A03583, which was technical in nature.  The amendment was agreed to via voice vote.  The Senate agreed to the bill as amended and re-referred it to the Appropriations Committee.

HB 1388, PN 2599 (Irvin) – The bill amends The Insurance Company Law of 1921 to extend the date by which the Pennsylvania Children’s Health Insurance Program expires from December 31, 2017 to December 31, 2019.  Senator Costa motioned to revert to the prior Printer’s Number (PN 1749), but the motioned failed by vote of 19-31.  On behalf of Senator White, Senator Corman offered amendment A04543.  This amendment removes language prohibiting reimbursement under the CHIP program for certain gender or sex transition services.  The amendment provides that children are only prohibited from receiving reimbursement for sex/gender reassignment surgery under CHIP.  The amendment was adopted, 32-18, and the Senate agreed to the bill as amended.

SR 168, PN 1260 (Langerholc) – This resolution requires the Joint State Government Commission (JSGC) to establish an advisory committee to conduct an analysis of the impacts of removing 3rd through 5th class counties from the emissions testing program and to report its findings and recommendations to the Senate within one year.  The Senate adopted the Resolution via voice vote.