State lawmakers face a long to-do list when they return to session later this month

Written by on May 17, 2021

Pennsylvania lawmakers have begun a short break and will reconvene later this month.

By Sam Dunklau

May 13, 2021

When they return, they’ll have plenty to tackle, chief among them: the next state spending plan, due by the end of June.

Even though taxes aren’t due for a few more days, the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue says the state has already taken in $1 billion more than expected this year.

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Pennsylvania is also getting an extra $7 billion from the American Rescue Plan.

Senate Democrats like Minority Leader Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) are eager to spend that on education and child care.

“Our businesses, our workers and our families need programs, programs and support systems that will help us navigate through what we’re calling the new normal,” Costa says. 

Separate from the budget, the Senate has yet to vote on a measure to give childhood sexual abuse survivors more time to sue their abusers.

Survivors like one-time Senate candidate Shaun Dougherty are urging Republican Majority Leader Kim Ward (R-Westmoreland) to bring it up for a vote:

“She doesn’t have to vote for it. She can vote against it, but it should come to the floor for a vote. I mean, I can’t tell you how exhausted I am. But I’m not going to stop coming,” Dougherty says.

The House, meanwhile, could soon be debating voting law changes.  

GOP Rep. Seth Grove (R-York), who’s leading that effort, has said he wants a package voted on by next month.

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