Legislative Update: June 20, 2019

Legislative Update: June 20, 2019

The Senate and House of Representatives were in legislative session this week and return to session next week.

House Bill 1069

The House State Government Committee voted on House Bill 1069, sponsored by Representative Aaron Bernstine (R-Lawrence), this week. The bill requires agencies to provide agendas in advance of meetings, so the public can attend and participate in issues that matter to them.

House Bill 985

House Bill 985, sponsored by Representative Frank Ryan (R-Lebanon), which establishes the freestanding Auditor General Employee Qualification Act, was amended on the House floor this week. The bill requires that auditors employed by the Auditor General who conduct forensic and fraud audits be appropriately qualified to conduct such audits and permits the Department of the Auditor General to conduct forensic and fraud audits. PNA worked with the Representative on the confidentiality provision and is now neutral on the bill.

House Bill 849

The House passed House Bill 849, sponsored by Rep. Kate Klunk (R-York) this week. This legislation creates the Disclosing Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Act, which would prohibit employers from requiring employees or prospective employees to sign a nondisclosure agreement as a condition of employment. A Tribune-Review case started a long line of cases that make clear when government is involved in a settlement agreement, the terms must be public and confidentiality clauses are unenforceable as a matter of law.

House Bill 1423

The House Education Committee passed House Bill 1423, sponsored by Representative Jason Ortitay (R-Allegheny) last week, The bill requires the School Safety and Security Committee in the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency to create a threat assessment task force to support the development and ongoing work of threat assessment teams with a duty to develop best practices for public school entities to use in assessing and responding to threats, develop and offer training programs and informational materials, and create model procedures and guidelines for threat assessment teams. PNA is working to ensure that information regarding the teams in accessible. Similarly, the Senate Education Committee passed Senate Bill 729, sponsored by Senator Jay Costa (D-Allegheny).

Senate Bill 690

The Senate Local Government Committee passed Senate Bills 690, 691 and 692, sponsored by Senator Scott Hutchinson (R-Butler, Clarion, Forest, Venango & Warren) this week. SB 690 increases from $1,500 to $6,000 the value of municipal real property below which an incorporated town need not publicly advertise for bids when selling its real property. This legislation is part of a three-bill package. The other two bills similarly amend the Borough Code and Third Class City Code in Titles 8 and 11 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, respectively, and the Second Class Township Code. PNA is neutral on these bills.