The Senate voted unanimously in favor of House Bill 464, the so-called “Hannah Montana legislation,” which would prohibit the use of automated ticket purchasing software for the purchase of entertainment tickets over an Internet Web site.

The bypass allows a mass purchaser to buy tickets faster than the general public can access them. The purchaser will then typically scalp the tickets for profit.

Violation of this law would be considered a misdemeanor and the perpetrator would be required to pay a fine of $5,000.  Each ticket bought through the use of ticket purchasing software would be considered a separate incident.

Last year the House unanimously passed a similar bill but the bill died in the Senate. 

The bill is now in the House Rules Committee with the Senate’s technical amendments.


The Senate passed House Bill 961 unanimously. The bill would reauthorize the state recycling fee until January 1, 2020. The fee is currently slated to sunset at the end of 2012.  The grants issued from the monies collected by this fee are distributed to localities to aid them in planning and carrying out curbside recycling mandates.  The grants are given out in three-year cycles.

Beginning in the fiscal year 2009-2010, through and including fiscal year 2012-2013, $1.250 million will be transferred annually from the Recycling Fund to the Used Tire Pile Remediation Restricted Account. 

The bill now goes back to the House.


By a 39-10 vote, the Senate passed Senate Bill 81, which would allow members of the governing board of a public authority to have an interest in a liquor distributor or importing license, even if that public authority has an interest in one or more retail licenses or acts as a landlord for a retail license. 

The bill would also allow an entity to obtain both a manufacturer’s or limited winery license and a hotel, restaurant or retail license to be used at the same location.  More than one location may be licensed in this way.

The legislation would also permit licenses, which allow an individual to operate a winery or other facility that involves the manufacturing, producing and distilling of alcohol, to be transferred from one person or place to another.  Applicants for a transfer would be assessed a filing fee of up to $700.

Senate Bill 81 would also allow implementation of a customer relations marketing program, which would offer customers coupons or discounts on certain products.

In addition, the bill would not allow a state store to be placed within a dry municipality without a referendum approving the location.

Finally, no store would be allowed to have an interior connection with another business that permits the consumption of alcohol.  Stores that currently fit that description, that are not licensed by the board, must cease operation when their current lease is up or by January 31, 2015.

The bill is now in the House.


The Senate passed Senate Bill 85, which would to allow the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Environmental Quality Board to have an independent counsel to assist in matters that come before the board.  All communication between the independent counsel and the board members would be considered privileged. 

The Environmental Quality Board is a 20-member independent board that adopts all of the DEP’s regulations.

The DEP would appoint the independent counsel.

The legislation was prompted by concerns that the same counsel currently serves both the department and board. 

The measure now goes to the House.

The Senate unanimously approved Senate Bill 1186, which would allow the Department of Military Affairs to arrange for burial details for veteran soldiers who are to be interred in the Washington Crossing National Cemetery. 

The department currently has the power to arrange for burial details for veteran soldiers who are to be interred in the Indiantown Gap National Cemetery and the National Cemetery of The Alleghenies.

            The bill is now in the House Veterans Affairs and Military Preparedness Committee.


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