Nov. 23, 2022 / Press Release

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#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol
Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is such a cherished time to remember how blessed we are. From my family to yours, may you all have a safe, healthy and happy Thanksgiving.

In honor of the Thanksgiving holiday, state offices will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 24, and Friday, Nov. 25. My offices will be closed as well. PennDOT Driver License Centers will be closed Nov. 24-25 as well, though many services are available online at

If you are traveling, be sure to check for the latest traffic and weather information.                                   
Improving Health Care Delivery

A new law adopted by the General Assembly earlier this fall will help improve the timely delivery of health care services by reforming the prior authorization process in the Commonwealth.

Act 146 of 2022 aims to simplify the prior authorization process, making it more effective, consistent and transparent. The law will require insurers to make available an electronic communications network that permits prior authorization requests to be submitted electronically, and authorizations and adverse determinations to likewise by returned electronically. It also gives the Pennsylvania Insurance Department authority over external reviews of benefit determinations under the Affordable Care Act.

With the new law, the Commonwealth joins 44 other states that already have external review authority. The major provisions of the law take effect in January 2024.             
New Law Examines Opportunity to Boost PA’s Energy Exports

Pennsylvania can and should be a leader in the production and export of clean energy sources. That’s why we adopted a new law, Act 133 of 2022, creating a task force to study opportunities to make the Port of Philadelphia an export terminal for liquefied natural gas (LNG).

With similar thinking, the House unanimously passed my resolution (House Resolution 238) to examine how small modular reactors could be best used in Pennsylvania. Small modular reactors are nuclear fission reactors that can provide clean energy despite weather conditions and sunshine.

The LNG task force will study what obstacles are currently preventing Philadelphia from becoming a leader in exporting LNG. The taskforce will be charged with creating a report and recommendations to be presented to the General Assembly and the administration. The taskforce will be made up of people representing the General Assembly, natural gas industry, Philadelphia building trades and PhilaPort.

An LNG export facility in the Commonwealth could help reduce carbon emissions globally, further U.S. energy independence, promote peace for European allies who would no longer rely on tyrannical governments for their energy supply, create good-paying jobs, and make energy cheaper for families and job creators across Pennsylvania.
Update on ID.Me

Starting Nov. 9, all Unemployment Compensation (UC) claimants will be prompted to verify their identity upon logging into the UC dashboard. This is an additional security measure to protect claimants’ personal information and thwart would-be fraudsters.

When you log in using PA UC login information, you will then be prompted to enter your login information. You’ll have to do this only once, and it will be simpler than the first time you completed verification. If you need help, visit this website.
Deadline Nears for Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program

Older adults and Pennsylvanians with disabilities have until Dec. 31 to apply for the state’s 2021 Property Tax/Rent Rebate program.

The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older; widows and widowers age 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters, and half of Social Security income is excluded.

Applicants who are approved for a 2021 rebate will also receive an additional one-time bonus rebate equal to 70% of their original rebate amount. You can find more information on the one-time bonus rebates by visiting

For additional information and applications, click here. You can also call my Hershey office at 717-534-1323 to have an application mailed to you.
Safety Tips for this Hunting Season

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Firearms deer season opens Saturday, Nov. 26. As you prepare to head out to our fields and forests, be sure to keep safety in mind. The Pennsylvania Game Commission offers these important tips:

Basic Safety
  •   Positively identify the target – Be sure you are shooting at legal game and not another hunter. And never shoot at sounds or movement.
  •   Stay in the zone! Hunters should be spaced 25 to 40 yards apart, and always in sight of one another. Each hunter’s zone of fire spans about 45 degrees directly in front of the hunter. Never shoot at game moving between you and someone else.
  •   Plan your hunt! Let someone know where you're hunting and when you'll return.
  •   Buckle up! If you hunt from an elevated stand, always wear a full-body, fall-restraint device as soon as your feet leave the ground until they return.
  •   Keep fit! Hunting is hard work. Don't become a statistic. Keep physically fit. Start with a check-up and follow your doctor's advice.
  •   Stay found! Become familiar with your hunting area. Learn how to use a map and compass or GPS unit. Be prepared for emergencies. Carry a basic survival kit and know how to use it.
  •   Be seen! Wear or display the required amount of fluorescent orange clothing.

Firearms Safety
  •   Handle all firearms as if they’re loaded. Never assume they are unloaded and double check to be sure.
  •   Always point the muzzle in a safe direction and don’t put your finger on the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
  •   Unload and place your firearm on the ground before crossing a fence, log or other obstacle, or climbing a tree.
  •   Shoot only when a safe and adequate backstop exists. Don’t shoot at hard, flat surfaces, water or a target on the horizon.

For more information, visit the Pennsylvania Game Commission website at
My wife and I recently enjoyed the Hershey Food Bank and Community Outreach Feed The Need 2022 fundraiser at Hershey Country Club. It was a lovely evening in support of a great cause.
To kick off NationalApprenticeshipWeek, Secretary Jennifer Berrier from Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry joined us at Insulators and Allied Workers Local 23 in East Hanover Township. This new training center prepares our future workforce.
I recently joined VFW Post 9639 in Shellsville in celebrating its 75th anniversary. My thanks to the post for all it does for youth, veterans and the community as a whole.
So many Middletown Home residents served in the military. On Nov. 11 (Veterans Day), they invited me to participate in a program that was a beautiful tribute to that spirit of service. I especially welcomed the chance to hear from Air Force veteran Harry Fink.
Cub Scouts Pack 203, Hershey, invited me to speak about government service as the children worked toward their "Building a Better World" badge. I'm already confident these Scouts are going to be instrumental in building a better world.