In this update:
Protecting Parental Rights in Education
As the son of a school librarian, I voted for two bills to give parents a voice in discussions of gender identity and sexual orientation in Pennsylvania schools. Both bills were approved by the Senate.
The bills were introduced in response to concerns from parents that inappropriate discussions were taking place in classrooms without their knowledge. These bills will ensure that parents, not the government, have the final say over when their children are exposed to explicit content.
Senate Bill 1277 would require districts to identify sexually explicit content in school curriculum and materials and notify parents that their child’s coursework includes such content. Senate Bill 1278 would prohibit classroom instruction on gender identity and sexual orientation for pre-kindergarten through fifth-grade students.
PA Court Blocks Wolf’s Bridge Tolls
With inflation and rising gas prices causing significant hardship for many Pennsylvanians, the last thing drivers need is another new fee.
The Commonwealth Court blocked the Wolf Administration’s plan to toll 9 bridges today, including the Lenhartsville Bridge on I-78 and bridges that cross the Lehigh River on I-80. This plan was created WITHOUT legislative approval and has faced opposition from PA drivers, businesses, and local and state government officials.
Argall Report: Eckley Miners’ Village
The July edition of my monthly TV program features a recent visit I made to Eckley Miners’ Village in the Hazleton area with Senator John Yudichak (I-14).
Eckley Miners’ Village, just like neighboring Jim Thorpe, Pottsville, and Tamaqua, showcases the history of our region. It’s one of the many attractions that continues to bring visitors to the area to appreciate the unique culture of the region that helped drive the Industrial Revolution.
This edition will air on:
This and all previous editions are also available on my website.
House Begins Impeachment Investigation of DA Larry Krasner
The state House of Representatives voted to create the Select Committee on Restoring Law and Order this week to review Philadelphia’s record-setting levels of gun violence and consider the impeachment of District Attorney Larry Krasner.
Krasner’s soft on crime approach led to a record number of homicides in 2021 and widespread concerns from residents about the safety of their city. Members of the Senate have criticized Krasner for his soft on crime approach, including the Senate’s only Independent, Senator John Yudichak (I-14), and President Pro Tempore Jake Corman (R-34).
Protecting the Integrity of Women’s Sports
Women should not be forced to compete against biological males in sports. I voted to send Rep. Barb Gleim’s Fairness in Women’s Sports Act to the governor.
The bill passed with a bipartisan vote and will preserve the increased athletic opportunities female students have gained over the past half century in this country.
Watch an interview I did with WFMZ on the bill here.
Dead People Receiving Welfare Benefits?
The Center Square recently published an article about my bill to crack down on welfare fraud which was approved by the Senate on a 30 to 20 vote. I introduced this bill because we should be ensuring the benefits go to those in genuine need – NOT dead people. An audit found nearly $700,000 in benefits were paid to dead recipients.
Read the full article here.
More Natural Gas Funding for Local Projects?
Marcellus Shale impact fees brought in over $230 million in 2021, the second highest total ever. The money collected funds many important programs in Pennsylvania, including the Growing Greener program, water and sewer infrastructure grants, soil and water conservation districts, and county and municipal governments where shale gas development occurs.
This money will help support many important projects across Pennsylvania, including the ongoing efforts to clean up the Schuylkill River (pictured above), which was once one of the dirtiest, most polluted waterways in the country before funding like this and dedicated volunteers began to restore it. Learn more here.
Have a Happy Independence Day
If the ongoing state budget debates allow us, on Monday, Rep. Tim Twardzik (R-123) and I will again join the annual 4th of July Parade in Port Carbon. Ever since I first participated in this parade as a young boy in the 1960s, I’ve enjoyed this holiday tradition!
It’s important to remember why we celebrate this uniquely American holiday. I’m cosponsoring a resolution by Senator Doug Mastriano recognizing the importance of the Declaration of Independence.
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