Medical Assistance Work Requirement Before Senate

Medical Assistance Work Requirement Before Senate

By Leo Knepper

On Tuesday (April 17) the Pennsylvania House passed HB 2138 with bipartisan support. This legislation would make important changes to Pennsylvania’s Medical Assistance (MA) program. Welfare programs too often measure their success by the number of people enrolled; not how many people achieve independence. HB 2138 reforms the MA program by adding work requirements for able-bodied adults. Work requirements should be a cornerstone of any welfare reform proposal. According to the sponsor of the legislation, Rep. Matt Dowling, 51 percent of able-bodied MA recipients do not work.

At one-time MA was truly limited to the neediest, but that changed with Obamacare. Now nearly 20 percent of the US population are enrolled in MA plans. By adding work, job search, and training requirements, Rep. Dowling is ensuring that people who can work are encouraged to attain independence. It is worth noting that HB 2138 exempts several groups of people from the work search requirements. The exemptions include some of the most vulnerable members of society like pregnant women, people who are in a mental institution, children and senior citizens.

Adding work requirements does increase administrative costs for the state. However, those costs will be more than offset by the savings generated by people who are able to move off of MA. There are thousands of empty skilled labor and manufacturing jobs across the state, helping people prepare for that work and off of public assistance is a win for everyone.

HB 2138 now moves to the Senate.

Mr. Knepper is executive director of Citizens Alliance of Pennsylvania.

Bathroom Bill Headache For Wagner

Bathroom Bill Headache For Wagner

By Carla D’Addesi

A simmering issue is heating up in Pennsylvania’s Gubernatorial Primary to be decided on May 15. Confusing campaign ads and ambiguous language are hiding the truth causing Pennsylvania to appear to be another corrupt swamp in need of draining!

The emerging battle has divided Conservatives and is challenging the paradigm of the Republican Party, turning them against the PA GOP itself!

Let’s simplify the situation for voters.

Current PA Governor, (D) Tom Wolf will be challenged in November by one of three  Republican primary candidates: Laura Ellsworth,  Paul Mango, or  State Senator Scott Wagner.

The divisive issue has to do with the “Bathroom Bill” otherwise known as the PA Fairness Act. Though the “Fairness Act” has a pleasant ring to it, the controversy lies within the ambiguous wording of proposed Senate Bill 974, which seeks to add “gender identity & expression and sexual orientation” to Pennsylvania’s Human Relations Act.

The confusion arises because the language in the Bathroom Bill doesn’t actually include the word “bathroom” but instead says “Public Accommodations.”

The new law would state:

State law prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, sex, ethnicity, age, religion, and handicap, among other characteristics, in the areas of employment, housing, and public accommodations.

Public accommodations are places that provide goods and services such as restaurants, movie theaters, hotels, and public schools.

If sexual orientation and gender identity were added to the anti-discrimination law, which is co-sponsored by Scott Wagner in SB 974, then public accommodations could NOT exclude transgender people from the restrooms that correspond to their gender identity!

What does that mean to your children, their schools and their safety?

Biological males and females will have the right to access bathrooms, locker rooms and showers of the opposite sex!

Biological boys who believe they have a girl’s brain, and are trapped in a boy’s body, will be allowed full access to all girl’s bathrooms, locker rooms and showers.

Biological girls who believe they have a boy’s brain, and are trapped in a boy’s body, will be allowed access to all boy’s bathrooms, locker rooms and showers.

Men who “feel” like women will be permitted to waltz into the women’s locker rooms of the YMCA where my daughters are changing for their swim classes.

My unwillingness to share my locker rooms with men isn’t a matter of mere discomfort. It’s a matter of safety.

Women don’t fear transgenders in the spaces; they fear men in their spaces. How can we distinguish between a transwoman and a predator until it’s too late?

Ironically, women’s shelters, places often sought to escape dangerous men, would be forced to admit men who “feel” like women. According to research published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, as many as 57 percent of the women in shelters report domestic violence as the primary cause of their homelessness. What does it look like when those men are allowed to claim female “gender identity” and follow them in?

Paul Mango, vows to veto any “bathroom bill” legislation that violates privacy for bathrooms and public facilities, ensuring women & children our privacy, safety and protection of religious liberties.

True Conservatives in Pennsylvania plan to elect Paul Mango.

Carla D’Addesi is a well-respected author and vlogger who has appeared on Fox & Friends, OANN and CBN. She hosts ‘Your Family Matters’  which runs 7-8 a.m., Fridays  1180WFYL. She can followed on Twitter at @CarlaDaddesi and found on Facebook here.

Bathroom Bill Headache For Wagner

Bathroom Bill Headache For Wagner

Charlton Opponent Submits 900 Signatures

Charlton Opponent Submits 900 Signatures
Regina Scheerer, retired teacher

Charlton Opponent Submits 900 Signatures — Regina Scheerer, the retired teacher who is taking on incumbent State Rep. Alex Charlton, delivered nominating petitions containing nearly 900 signatures, Friday, to the  Pennsylvania Bureau of Commissions, Elections and Legislation.

Only 300 signatures are needed.

Unless there are some bizarrely major issues (shenanigans), expect to see Mrs. Scheerer’s name on the ballot for the May 15 Republican Primary.

Charlton was elected to represent Pennsylvania’s 165th District in 2016 replacing long-time incumbent Bill Adolph.

Since then, he has time and again poked his constituents in the eye. He has opposed commonsense reforms aimed at curtailing vote fraud. He has endeavored to maintain the corrupt system that lets money be automatically deducted from the paychecks of public employees to pay for politicking. This politicking often involves supporting things that the employee opposes.

He has refused to fight for pension reform. Did you know that there is someone in this state getting a $477,591 public pension for which you are on the hook? Alex certainly should.

Alex has avoided the fight to abolish the Prevailing Wage mandate which could  shave $25 million off the price of the $125 million Springfield High School project. Why does Alex want to inflict this burden on his elderly neighbors living on fixed incomes?

The final straw for Mrs. Scheerer, though, came Dec. 12 when Alex voted against limiting abortions to the first 20 weeks of pregnancy rather than the existing 24. He was one of six Republicans to do so. Civilized people understand that failing to protect weak and helpless life lead to nihilism and despair. Most of Western Europe bans abortion — with some strict exceptions — at 12 weeks.  Note, this would be 12 weeks gestational age which would be about nine weeks after conception.

Even hip, progressive Sweden and Norway ban them at 18 weeks gestational age.

Alex, however, who ran as a pro-lifer, thinks that’s too oppressive.

The 165th District has 63, 769 residents as of 2011 and consists of Morton Borough;  Springfield Township except for the 2nd precinct of the 3rd Ward; Marple Township except for the 5th Ward; and the 4th and 6th wards of Radnor Township along with 1st Precinct of the 1st Ward, the 1st Precinct of the 3rd Ward and the 2nd Precinct of the 5th Ward.

For the record, Mrs. Scheerer says she will not take the legislative  pension.

Charlton Opponent Submits 900 Signatures

 

 

 

Gay Extremist Gift Gets Wagner Grief

Gay Extremist Gift Gets Wagner Grief
Fun to stay at the YWCA?

Gay Extremist Gift Gets Wagner Grief  — A $5,000 contribution by a gay extremist in 2015 to a political action committee headed by Scott Wagner is getting the GOP gubernatorial hopeful quite a bit of grief.

A lot, lot of grief.

The money was given by Tim Gill to Reform PA PAC,  which Wagner chairs. Wagner won an historic write-in special election in March 2014 to represent the York County-centered 28th District. He campaigned as a Tea Party candidate against corruption, cronyism and indifference by the Republican establishment.

He won a full term that fall.

While Wagner has been outspokenly good on certain issues such as the state’s scandalous pension system, he seems to have managed to get himself most identified with a bizarre crusade to prohibit businesses and institutions from making distinctions based on biological sex.

He has co-sponsored a series of “bathroom bills“, a term with which Wagner wrongly takes issue  as there is no doubt that these bills would  grant by-right access for males calling themselves female to women’s restrooms and girls’ school sports.

Wagner has said that ending privacy for women (and girls) was not his intent and that he merely wants to stop LGBQWHATEVER people from being discriminated by business.

That’s almost as bad, Scott. The elimination of  the concept of “protected groups” should be the goal of decent, thinking people, not their expansion.

Being a member of a “protected group” is not helpful. Business owners — as we’d expect you to understand — base the vast majority of hiring decisions on whether the employee will make life easier. Protected group membership is something that makes business owners walk on eggshells and that is, by far, the main reason protected group members face — understandable — discrimination.

Gays, who are not yet a protected group, certainly aren’t facing economic hardship in this country and that gets us to Tim Gill.

Gill is the mega-rich gay extremist who wants to “punish” those who question his lifestyle choices. This always means stifling debate about legitimate concerns and usually means personal destruction. He is a bad, corrupting man.

Gay Extremist Gift Gets Wagner Grief

 

 

 

 

Gender Policy Change Pitch Made In Penn Delco

Gender Policy Change Pitch Made In Penn Delco

By John Haenn

Advocates of fluid definitions of gender found themselves stymied and flustered by simple questions from the audience and school board at last night’s (Dec. 18) Penn Delco (Pa) School Board meeting.

They were on hand to support a proposed new policy that would add “gender identity” to a student’s accepted identity even if it differs from the birth certificate.

This would effectively give by-right access to traditionally gender-segregated places and athletic teams to all desiring such access regardless of biology.

Testifying for a policy change were Samantha King, who directs the sex and gender clinic  at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP); counselor Erica Smith; and Quinton Cruise of the Pennsylvania Youth Conference, an LGBTQ advocacy group.

School Superintendent George Steinhoff noted that the district now handles such matters of confusion on a case-by-case basis with the emphasis on protecting the child. He questioned their claim that failing to adopt a general policy would violate federal law as an Obama-era directive had been rescinded.  Ms. King said court battles were  occurring but conceded that he was correct. School Board Solicitor Mike Puppio would also point out that there are no laws binding on this.

School Director Lisa Esler noted that CHOP’s website suggested that single-room bathrooms as an option for children having difficulty. She said that the school district has those including one in the nurse’s office.

“Single use bathrooms might not be close,” Ms. King responded. “Also kids might get sick using the nurse’s bathroom.”

Mrs. Esler asked Cruise if any research had occurred regarding  the impact and emotional distress on the 99.9 percent of the student population in currently segregated areas. He became noticeably flustered and removed himself from the podium. Ms. King stepped in to rescue him.

“Someone not trans can also use single-use bathrooms,” she said which didn’t really answer the question.

Mrs. Esler asked if the policy would extend to adult visitors at the school.

“It doesn’t matter because adults use faculty facilities anyway,” said Ms. King.

Then the audience took over.

“How do you handle mean kids, bullies?” one person asked.

“Bathrooms are just unsafe,” Ms. King answered. “Adding gender identity to the polices helps address bullies.”

“Should there be a security guard in the bathroom now?” one person asked.

“Students can handle this,” said Ms. King. “Friends and going into the bathroom with a buddy. The non-bullies and trans students can use the special bathrooms.”

“We’re already complying, this is a waste of time,” said one person.

“You don’t comply because you have no policy,” said Ms. King. “You don’t comply because you can’t use any bathroom you want.”

The board discussed the matter. Director Georgia Stone pointed out that the district is not in the best position to help students decide who they are.

“This impacts too much, lives, families and friends, future,” she said. “This should be left to the courts on a case-by-case basis.” She noted that the district would of course comply with a court order.

Several residents made public comments. One said “This is a far reach” as there are already unisex bathrooms, the district is accommodating and that there already are bullying policies. One said “getting changed in a locker room is already stressful,” and a new policy should be enacted before it gets worse. Another said “all students need to be given equal rights”. Another who moved into the district a year ago from Chester County said “I know students are bullied and some decide to be home schooled. Students are mean.”

Gender Policy Change Pitch Made In Penn Delco

Gender Policy Change Pitch Made In Penn Delco

 

 

 

Usual Republican Suspects Stop Anti-Corruption Bill

Usual Republican Suspects Stop Anti-Corruption Bill  — On Dec. 12, the usual Republican suspects in Chester and Delaware counties voted against a bill that would have banned political contributions from automatically being deducted from the paychecks of public employees.

There is no morally justifiable reason for a nay vote.  You doubt this? Name one. Give us one reason why money promised to a person for his labor should be taken without his consent and given to back a cause with which he may not agree.

SB 166 was an extremely mild bill. It only applied to public employees and allowed for deductions for union matters including salaries.

And it still couldn’t pass.

The usual Republican suspects are, from Delco,  Steve Barrar (R-160), Nick Miccarelli (R-162), Jamie Santora, (R-163),  Alex Charlton (R-165), and Chris Quinn (R-168), and. from Chesco, Harry Lewis​  (R-74) Becky Corbin (R-155)​ and Duane Milne (R-167).

The Usual Republican Suspects sounds like a great movie. Maybe we can get Bryan Singer to direct it.  Who would Kevin Spacey play? Maybe Val DiGiorgio. We can call him Keyser So So.

By the way, if you care about the labor movement and if you care about workers — which union bosses obviously do not — crusade to end automatic deductions for union fees for everyone.

Automatic paycheck deductions hurts labor . Why do the massive amount of money obtained from these involuntary deductions go to causes and candidates such as lobbying for unfair trade pacts and stopping pipelines, which are obviously against the interests of labor?

Hmmm?

Without this guaranteed income the union leaders would actually have to heed the will of those they claim to represent.

The most successful lobbying group in America is the NRA. Suppose if its officials got paid no matter what it did? You think they’d work as hard?

They’d work about as hard as the union bosses do for their constituents, and private access to firearms would have long ended.

Usual Republican Suspects Stop Anti-Corruption Bill

Usual Republican Suspects Stop Anti-Corruption Bill

 

Barrar Charlton Save Corrupt Dem Piggy Bank

Barrar Charlton Save Corrupt Dem Piggy Bank — The Republican-controlled Pennsylvania House, yesterday (Dec. 12), squashed a senate bill that would have stopped the automatic deductions of money used as political contributions from state worker paychecks.

The contributions overwhelmingly go to Democrats and left-wing causes. SB 166 would have ended the practice.

Every Democrat present voted nay as did 26 Republicans including the Delaware County contingent. That would be you Steve Barrar (R-160), Nick Miccarelli (R-162), Jamie Santora, (R-163),  Alex Charlton (R-165), and Chris Quinn (R-168).

What is even the point of voting Republican? These guys certainly don’t seem to be trying to make our lives easier. Their own, yes, but not ours.

Barrar Charlton Save Corrupt Dem Piggy Bank
Barrar Charlton Save Corrupt Dem Piggy Bank
Piggy bank saved for another day.

SB 76 Fails To Ease Tax Burden Says Lisa Esler

SB 76 Fails To Ease Tax Burden — Lisa Esler, who is one of our favorite people and is a Penn Delco school director, had a 14-minute interview, today, Nov. 30, with Gunther Rewind concerning SB 76. The proposed legislation would prohibit homes from being taxed to fund schools.

Lisa notes that this reform does not solve the tax burden issue and that  state legislature is not interested in taking the simple, commonsense steps necessary to do so.

She says the prevailing wage mandate increases construction and maintenance  projects between 10 and 30 percent and should be simple to repeal with an honest government. She notes unnecessary state mandates such as paid teacher sabbaticals. She points out the crushing $70 billion-and-rising pension shortfall. She mentioned how the right to strike by teachers inevitably means tax increases.

And while nobody should be taxed from their home, Lisa is 100 percent correct that  Harrisburg is not serious about fixing things.

You can find Lisa’s interview here.

SB 76 Fails To Ease Tax Burden

SB 76 Fails To Solve Tax Burden Problem

Prevailing Wage Ban All Gain No Pain

Prevailing Wage Ban All Gain No Pain — President Trump minutes ago signed significant reforms that he points out will significantly improve our health care system while costing the taxpayer nothing.

Sort of like what would happen if Pennsylvania repealed its prevailing wage law.

The 1961 law  requires labor cost to be be paid at a rate set by the state for most public construction projects.

It is estimated  to increase the cost of these projects by 20 percent.

In other words, a new high school costing $150 million under the prevailing wage law would cost $120 million without it. In other words all gain and no pain just by crossing out some words on a piece of paper.

Are you listening Springfield residents? Alex Charlton? Tom McGarrigle?

Prevailing Wage Ban  All Gain No Pain

Prevailing Wage Ban All Gain No Pain

 

Property Tax Referendum Explained

Property Tax Referendum Explained  — The Republican State Committee has distributed an explanation of the Nov. 7 ballot question on whether school districts may exempt homes from property taxes.

We are republishing it. Hat tip Donna Ellingsen.

Chairman’s Update

Dear State Committee Members:

This November, there will be a referendum on the ballot that could shape the future of Pennsylvania’s property tax system. Below I have included a research packet with information of the referendum along with background references.

The referendum, which would amend the PA Constitution, could allow for significant reductions in property taxes. I encourage you to education your voters about this referendum and to use this as an opportunity to bring conservative voters to the polls, which will help our whole ticket.

As always, please reach out to me with any questions or comment.

Sincerely,

Val

Research Packet | 2017 Property Tax Ballot Referendum 

TOP LINE: A November ballot question will ask voters whether local taxing authorities should be able to exempt residents from paying property taxes on their homes.

What would the ballot question do?

Nothing would change immediately if the ballot question passed in November.

  • School districts, counties & municipalities would have the option to exempt taxpayers’ primary residences from property taxes.
  • Note: commercial and industrial properties would still be taxed if a local government or school district enacted the exemption.

Under current law,  taxing authorities can choose to exempt taxpayers from paying up to 50 percent of the median assessed value of all homes.

  • The proposed change would expand that exemption, making it possible for local governments to exempt ALL taxpayers from paying ANY property taxes on their primary residence.

The official text of the ballot question:

“Shall the Pennsylvania Constitution be amended to permit the General Assembly to enact legislation authorizing local taxing authorities to exclude from taxation up to 100 percent of the assessed value of each homestead property within a local taxing jurisdiction, rather than limit the exclusion to one-half of the median assessed value of all homestead property, which is the existing law?”

Why is the ballot measure being championed by lawmakers? 

As reporter by the Philadelphia Inquirer:

  • Rep. David Maloney, R-Berks, who sponsored the bill that created the ballot question, said he receives weekly — and sometimes daily — complaints about property taxes from his constituents, especially those who are retired and live on fixed incomes.
    • “I had an elderly lady walk into my office unexpected,” he said. “She pulls out her property tax bill out of her pocketbook and said, ‘Sir, I can no longer pay this. Do you know how to help me?’ ”

Background information of property taxes:

  • In Pennsylvania, systems in place for property assessments and distributing school funding have sparked additional complaints about the real estate tax system.
  • Currently, property owners pay tax rates set by their county, school, and municipal governments.
  • FACT: School taxes account for the largest share of property-tax bills, and Pennsylvania’s school-funding system has long been criticized.

How do Pa. property taxes compare with other states’?

Statewide, property tax collections account for about 30 percent of local and state tax revenue, according to a study by the Tax Foundation.

  • Our tax rates are among the HIGHEST in America; Pennsylvania homeowners pay, on average, 1.46 percent of their home value in taxes, according to another Tax Foundation report, which ranks the state 10th nationwide for the highest effective tax rate. New Jersey, by comparison, has the highest effective tax rate of any state, at 2.44 percent.
  •  ***Pennsylvanians pay about $14 billion a year in school property taxes alone***

Opposition:

Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials

  • Jay Himes, Executive Director

Mr. Himes has said his group thinks the option to eliminate property taxes for primary residences is a good idea — as long as a sound revenue replacement is found.

  • But Mr. Himes and his association strongly oppose the Property Tax Independence Act and efforts to eliminate the school property tax. Under that bill, school districts would continue charging for property taxes to cover their existing debt until it is paid off, and county and local property taxes would remain the same. That would lead to even more unequal payments for homeowners depending on their school district, Mr. Himes said, and would not be total elimination of the tax.

School officials also oppose the loss of local school board control over education funding under proposals to eliminate the school tax.

  • “We don’t have a perfect tax system in place for school districts and we haven’t had one for decades,” Mr. Himes said. “It, however, is an inordinately complex and difficult issue because otherwise we’d of had a solution by now.”

Events on the horizon:

If the ballot measure is adopted by Keystone State voters, the legislature would need to find alternative sources of revenue before taxing authorities could move forward with enacting property tax exemptions.

Advocates for the Property Tax Independence Act say that the referendum could help them achieve the elimination of school property taxes.

  • Sen. David Argall, R-Schuylkill, is the prime sponsor of that effort, which has attracted support from both Democrats and Republicans. It was defeated after Lt. Gov. Mike Stack broke a tie vote on it in 2015.
  • As reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer:
    • Mr. Argall said he is open to amendments to his bill, which still lacks enough votes to pass. If the measure passes this fall, for example, he could amend his bill to eliminate school property taxes only for primary residences rather than all properties.
      • “It gives us more flexibility,” Mr. Argall said of the ballot question. “I believe it helps us to build some additional support for the concept across the state.”

 

Property Tax Referendum Explained

Property Tax Referendum Explained  -- The Republican State Committee has distributed an explanation of the Nov. 7 ballot question on whether school districts may exempt homes from property taxes.