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State Rep Justin Simmons Report

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The Weekly Roundup
Friday, January 19, 2018  The latest news from the State Capitol

Cutting Through the Red Tape

This week at the Capitol, state lawmakers and business leaders from across the Commonwealth unveiled a multi-bill package specifically designed to rein in state government overregulation.

The bills include giving the Legislature the ability to initiate the repeal of any state regulation in effect; establishing the Independent Office of the Repealer to undertake an ongoing review of existing regulations; requiring legislative approval of an economically significant regulation; making the permitting process more transparent; requiring each agency to better educate the regulated community regarding implementation of any new regulation and its requirements; and improving the regulatory culture so the application of existing laws is collaborative and not punitive.

Pennsylvania currently has more than 153,000 regulatory restrictions that stretch across every industry. Learn more here.

Opioid Emergency Shouldn’t Impact Second Amendment

To help ensure that residents’ Second Amendment rights are not inadvertently impacted by the governor’s recent declaration of a state of emergency in the fight against opioid addiction, new legislation, which I am co-sponsoring, has been unveiled to protect that right.

Under state law, an emergency declaration criminalizes the open carrying in public or on public property of any firearm – whether a handgun, rifle or shotgun. The intent of this prohibition is to protect communities from looting and criminal behavior in the time of a natural disaster, and would last for the full duration of the declared disaster. While the declaration of disaster for the opioid crisis gives the state tools to use in this public health crisis, the issue regarding the Second Amendment is not necessary and should not be in effect.

The legislation would simply clarify that the prohibition against open carrying of an otherwise lawful firearm only applies if the disaster declaration expressly declares that such a prohibition is required to maintain public safety.

Rebate Forms Available on Monday

Forms for the state’s 2017 Property Tax/Rent Rebate program will be available for download from the Department of Revenue’s website starting Monday, Jan. 22. Paper forms will be available in the coming weeks.

For more information, visit my website at www.RepSimmons.com or click here.

Does Your Home Contain Radon?

An estimated 40 percent of Pennsylvania homes have higher levels of radon than national safety standards, due to the state’s geology. However, residents can perform a simple test to detect this odorless radioactive gas, which can cause lung cancer.

January is national Radon Action Month and a good time to test for radon, because doors and windows are generally closed, providing more accurate results. Simple radon test kits are inexpensive and available at home improvement and hardware stores. Learn more here.

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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
Email: jsimmons@pahousegop.com
TTY: 855-282-0614

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