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The Latest News from Your State Representative
Please do not reply to this e-mail, as I am unable to respond to messages sent to this address. You can contact me directly at vgaydos@pahousegop.com or here.
My Thoughts on Protecting Consumer Information and Privacy
I have received many inquiries about why I voted against a bill I was working on trying to improve. While House Bill 1201, Protecting Consumer Information and Privacy was a step in the right direction for the protection of confidential personal information, the final version of the bill that came up for a vote fell short of protecting all personal information everywhere.

As co-chair of the Cybersecurity Caucus, I helped to ensure that private sector entities don’t abuse your personal information, but House Bill 1201 states the attorney general, while conducting an “investigation,” would have the unchecked ability to demand private entities hand over the same confidential information we are trying to protect.

So, under the pretense of protecting personal privacy rights from the private sector, this legislation gives the attorney general too much power without the need to obtain a search warrant, subpoena or consent to access confidential information.

Without more safeguards to ensure that personal data was not misused by government, I voted “no.”

The bill passed the House by a vote of 139-62. It now moves on to the Senate where I hope my colleagues will make the necessary changes to change my vote to “yes” on concurrence.

You can watch comments on House Bill 1201 here.

Beware of Scams for College Entrance Exams
The Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General is warning of scams targeting parents of students who will soon be taking PSAT, SAT and ACT exams.

The scammers claim to be associated with the College Board or other educational organizations while offering preparation materials, duping the target by using their student’s name, address, school and test details, and other personal information.

The scammer starts the call by confirming the student’s address, then asking for parental permission and a deposit for the test prep materials. The scammers claim the deposit will be refunded after the test materials are used and returned. The materials are never sent and the scammer now has your credit card information.
Tips to Remember:
• Always be wary of unsolicited phone calls and emails requesting a payment.
• Never give personal or financial information over the phone or via email to an unsolicited phone call or email.
• Tell the caller that you need to check with your child or partner first and hang up.
• The College Board will never ask for bank or credit card information over the phone or email.

Consumers who have questions or feel they have been victimized by this scam may submit a complaint with the Office of Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection by visiting the website, emailing scams@attorneygeneral.gov or calling the office at 1-800-441-2555.

Self-Assembled Firearms
Last week, I voted “no” on legislation that would seek to ban privately manufactured firearms. First, it is already illegal for a person to sell a privately manufactured firearm or completed receiver in the United States without a serial number on it. It has been since 1968, so this bill is totally unnecessary. But this legislation would immediately make felons out of individuals who own vintage black powder or flint lock firearms.

The goal of any gun legislation should be crime control and this legislation does nothing to address the source of crimes. New York and Maryland spent millions on gun registry databases, even recording ballistic fingerprints and after the high cost it solved zero cases. Since then, both states have abolished their systems essentially because it is a total waste of tax dollars.

In addition, laws prohibiting privately manufactured firearms have already been deemed unconstitutional in a federal court. U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor issued a series of orders, stating the liberty interest of law-abiding citizens, wishing to engage in historically lawful conduct, building their own weapons outweigh the government’s competing interest in preventing prohibited persons from unlawfully possessing firearms.

House Bill 777 passed the House with a vote of 104-97, mostly on party lines.

However, the legislation requires government serialization and tracking of what the bill calls “firearm frames and receivers,” as well as other firearm components.

 Click here to watch
Please watch as I commented in the House chamber. This legislation will cost taxpayers and it won’t solve our crime problems. 

This bill will be moving to the Senate. I urge you to contact your senator and ask that they vote “no” on House Bill 777.

Bills Aim to Support, Promote Startup Initiatives Across Pennsylvania
Along with several of my House colleagues, I was pleased to announce a package of bills designed to support and promote startup initiatives across the Commonwealth.

Aiming to capitalize on Pennsylvania’s many assets, including talented, hard-working people and an ideal geographic location, the measures aim to ensure our Commonwealth can compete with the Silicon Valley, New York, Boston and other startup-friendly areas.

I have introduced legislation that would provide uncapped and non-expiring operating loss deductions to in-state startups. The cap on net operating losses harm new businesses that require large up-front investments and often need years to pay-off. This legislation aims to uncap the net operating loss carried forward by startups in Pennsylvania and allow them to have a non-expiring net operating loss, which can help ensure their long-term sustainability.

New business creation is a large part of building our future. The more we can do to fuel innovation and innovative companies, the better our future will be. However, many new companies operate at a loss in the first few years. By extending the net operating loss carry forward tax deduction both in the amount that can be deducted and the length of time in which one can take the deduction against future gains, Pennsylvania can be competitive with other states. No one should ever have to leave Pennsylvania to start a business.

Additional bills would designate March 18-24 as Commonwealth Startup Week; establish the Student Startup Incubator Network to empower student entrepreneurs to build their companies here; establish the Task Force on Startup Venture Opportunities; and provide uncapped and non-expiring operating loss deductions to in-state startups.

Read more here.

We Cannot Hurt Our Environment!
I support alternative energy. However, House Bill 1842, which claims to set a framework for communities to reap the benefits of solar energy easier, does nothing for decommission and disposal of the solar parts. This legislation would ultimately hurt not help our environment.

I was a “no” vote. Please listen to my remarks as I commented in the House chamber.

The legislation passed the House along party lines.

Landslide Update!
Landslides are a major issue in western Pennsylvania. Helping citizens and communities mitigate or recover from major catastrophic events, such as those caused by landslides, is precisely where government assistance should be applied.” – Rep. Valerie Gaydos

Recently, WPXI-TV Channel 11 in Pittsburgh did a follow-up story on the landslide that happened in Moon Township about a month ago.

Work continues on Beaver Grade Road that was impacted by the landslide.

This incident still leaves homeowners in limbo. The trauma is overwhelming. It is even more shocking when damage caused from landslides is not covered under normal homeowners insurance.

House Bill 589, legislation I introduced along with my colleague Rep. Emily Kinkead (D-Allegheny), is a bipartisan piece of legislation that would add coverage of landslides, slope movement and sinkholes to an existing program in the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) that currently only covers mine subsidence assistance and insurance. This measure would have far-reaching impacts in safeguarding residents against nature’s often unpredictable forces.

The lack of landslide protection leaves many Pennsylvanians exposed to the financial fallout and creates a large burden on communities in a multitude of ways.

Reporter Alyssa Raymond interviewed me. Please watch the story!

Due to heavy rain in our area this week, we have received reports of more landslides and flooding. I will keep you updated.

It’s Time to Act on Voter ID Constitutional Amendment
With a voter identification constitutional amendment having languished in committee for nearly a year, despite bipartisan support for the concept among both the public and lawmakers, House Republicans have launched a discharge petition in an attempt to advance the measure.

Under the rules of the House, discharge petitions require the signatures of at least 25 Democrats and 25 Republicans to be successful. With 22 House Democrats previously having supported the constitutional amendment proposal, I am hopeful we can finally put this question to the voters so they can have the final say.

Requiring ID each time a person casts a ballot would help prevent election fraud, including voting under a fictitious registration, voting multiple times by registered voters in multiple states, impersonating another voter and illegal immigrant voting. There is broad support for expanded voter ID requirements, with a 2021 poll by Franklin & Marshall College showing 74% of Pennsylvanians in favor. This includes 95% of Pennsylvania Republicans, 47% of Pennsylvania Democrats and 77% of Independents.

View Monday’s press conference about the issue here.

Taco Day at My District Office
Pictured with me is Terry O’Rourke Donoghue, headmaster from Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School.  
I purchased Tacos for my staff! Jessica Cerchiaro, executive director of communications and forensics coach from Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School (OLSH), delivered the Moe's Southwest Grill Taco Kits to help the school’s annual fundraiser.

A portion of the proceeds help to benefit the Moon Township Library.

The following day, Terry O’Rourke Donoghue, headmaster of OLSH, dropped off a school pennant to add to my office collection.

Moe’s Southwest Grill is located on Campbells Run Road.

I always enjoy seeing great leaders in our community and appreciate how many great students reside in the 44th District.

Pictured with me is Jessica Cerchiaro, executive director of communications and forensics coach.

Tree Planting Day in Leetsdale
Did you ever ask yourself why we take the time to plant trees and flowers? They improve our air quality by filtering harmful dust and pollutants such as ozone, carbon monoxide and sulfur dioxide from the air we breathe. Trees and flowers give off oxygen that we need to breathe.

I had a great time planting with members of TreeVitalizePittsburgh, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy and Leetsdale Borough Council. We planted more than 20 trees of all varieties.Thanks to Sen. Devlin Robinson for joining me.

More than 60 volunteers planted 24 trees on Broad Street and in Kohlmeyer Park. A sugar maple in Kohlmeyer Park was dedicated to Buddy Kretzler, son of Walter and Henrietta Kretzler and brother of Susan Kretzler-Falcone.

Scuba Diving Training
Thank you to the River Rescue Team at Crescent Township Volunteer Fire Department, Crescent Township Police Department and Steel City Scuba, for showing me your skills and letting me dive alongside you at the Introduction to Diving Demonstration at the Moon School Pool.

This day was a practice dive and training session for those who expressed an interest in trying scuba diving, potentially going on to get open water certification and eventually be a part of the river rescue team. The department has a history of being the river rescue unit in that stretch of the Ohio River and this will help in regional searches.

Crescent Township Police Officer Alex Lee was my dive buddy! It was good to get back in the water to recertify my own Open Water Diver Certification.

Trout Season Opens Saturday!
Good luck to all the anglers heading out this weekend for the opening day of trout season on Saturday, April 6. For everything you need to know about fishing in the Commonwealth, including licensing and stocking information, visit  fishandboat.com or check out the FishBoatPA mobile app. 
Let's Get Connected

Our District

Web Site

Office Locations
District Office:
1005 Beaver Grade Road, Suite 106, Moon Township, PA 15108 | Phone: (412) 262-3780, Fax: (412) 262-3783
Capitol Office:
Room 428, Irvis Office Building, House Box 202044, Harrisburg PA 17120-2044 | Phone: (717) 787-6651 |
Email: vgaydos@pahousegop.com