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State Representative Justin Simmons Report

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The Weekly Roundup
Friday, September 15, 2017  The latest news from the State Capitol

A Budget That Puts People First

In working to complete the 2017-18 budget package, the House this week approved legislation to generate enough revenue to close the projected budget gap. The “Putting People First” revenue package stands up for taxpayers by providing a fiscally responsible plan which contains no new or increased taxes or borrowing.

The revenues to fund the $1.5 billion deficit from 2016-17, as well as the anticipated revenue needed for the current budget of approximately $600 million, would come from legislative reserves; transfers from special accounts with excess or dormant funding; other fund transfers; multi-year agency lapsed funds; gaming reform proceeds; liquor transfers; and the sale of a portion of the Tobacco Settlement money.

The various transfers are not expected to negatively impact any current or future program or service to state residents. The measure now goes to the Senate for concurrence. Learn more here.

Helping Our Veterans

Legislation to help veterans and their spouses by enhancing their eligibility for state programs and services passed the House this week.

House Bill 980 would exempt 100 percent of a veteran’s federal disability compensation or pension from income calculations for any state program or benefit, such as the PACE and PACENET prescription drug programs or Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). (Under current law, the Property Tax/Rent Rebate program already excludes this income.)

In addition, the legislation would extend the exclusion of the compensation benefits to the veteran’s unmarried surviving spouse. The bill now goes to the state Senate.

Click here to view a large image.

Thanks for Coming!

We had a great turnout for the Concealed Carry Seminar I hosted last week at the Se-Wy-Co Fire Company. My thanks to everyone who attended and to our presenter, Attorney Joshua Prince, who provided lots of good information on a gun owner’s rights under Pennsylvania law.

Keeping Your Personal Info Safe

In light of recent news about a data breach at Equifax, a national credit-reporting agency, residents are encouraged to learn more about identity theft and how to protect their information from being used fraudulently.

It is unknown how many Pennsylvanian consumers the breach has affected; however, the Office of Pennsylvania Attorney General is leading a national investigation into the data breach.

In the meantime, consumers are urged to be proactive in monitoring their credit reports and financial account statements, such as credit cards and utilities, and in reporting any suspicious activity to the attorney general office’s hotline at 1-800-441-2555 or atscams@attorneygeneral.gov.

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RepSimmons.com
Office Locations
21 N. Main Street, Unit 9, Coopersburg, PA 18036 | Phone: (610) 282-0160
191 Main St., Suite 104, Emmaus, PA 18049 I Phone: (610) 965-5830
 56 W. Fourth St., Second Floor, Red Hill, PA 18076 I Phone: (215) 679-3152
5 East Wing, PO Box 202131, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2131 | (717) 783-1673

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