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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 via RepGaydos.com.
Last Tuesday, I joined my colleagues in the House and Senate to hear Gov. Tom Wolf deliver his budget proposal for the fiscal year 2020-21 before a joint session of the General Assembly. Unfortunately, much of what we heard from the governor was more of the same: more spending, more borrowing and more debt.

While some of the proposed spending is necessary, it is also necessary to recognize that our elected officials have a responsibility to the people of Pennsylvania, and to the future generations of Pennsylvanians who will be stuck with the bill for government overspending. Nonetheless, I am confident that we will be able to come together to pass a budget that funds all critical government directives while remaining fiscally responsible to taxpayers. As always, when it comes time to negotiate, it will be your interests that will be foremost in my mind.

On a separate note, I’d like to take this opportunity to once again remind you to sign up on my website to continue receiving these emails. The 60-day blackout period that limits what I can send you prior to an election is fast approaching. By signing up, you can ensure that there is no interruption to your receipt of these weekly updates.

And as always, please feel free to reach out to my office with any questions or concerns you have.


Valerie Gaydos
In this edition:
  •   2020-21 Budget Season Underway
  •   Register for my Upcoming Telephone Town Hall! 
  •   Anti-Human Trafficking Initiative Signed into Law
  •   Local Spotlight: BizTown Comes to Town 
  •   Krystal Biotech Announces New Findlay Township Facility 
  •   Bill to Boost Cancer Treatment Options Awaits Governor’s Signature
  •   REAL ID Enforcement to Begin Oct. 1 
2020-21 Budget Season Underway

Before a joint session of the General Assembly on Tuesday, Gov. Tom Wolf unveiled his 2020-21 state budget with a price tag of more than $36 billion, an increase of $2 billion over the current year’s enacted budget.

I am very concerned about this proposed level of spending and how it would impact our taxpayers and employers. The budget also reflects nearly $600 million in overspending in the current year’s budget. It is important that the governor and his administration abide by the enacted budget he agreed to.

Listen to my official response to Gov. Wolf’s proposal here.

Fortunately, the governor’s address is just the beginning of the annual budget process. The House Appropriations Committee will conduct a series of hearings starting Tuesday, Feb. 18, to delve into the details of the governor’s plan and how state agencies are spending their funding.

For a schedule and live streaming of the hearings, click here. 
Register for My Upcoming Telephone Town Hall!

Mark your calendars! I will be hosting a telephone town hall event on Tuesday, Feb. 25 beginning at 7 p.m.

During this call-in event, I will field your questions live, discussing critical state-related issues and topics important to our area. I invite you to register for the event on my website so that you can participate and make your voices heard.

Telephone Town Hall
Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 7 p.m.
Register for the event here. 
Anti-Human-Trafficking Initiative Signed into Law

I am incredibly pleased to report that one of several human trafficking bills that I championed in the House last month was signed into law this week.

Senate Bill 60 is designed to better protect victims of human trafficking and ensure justice is served by imposing stricter penalties on criminals involved in this heinous crime.

The new law raises the grading of the offense to a first-degree felony and imposes increased fines and jail time. Specifically, the law will raise the additional fine amount to at least $1,000 for a first offense and as much as $50,000 for a third or subsequent offense or where the victim of sexual servitude was a minor at the time of the offense. Jail time could be as much as 20-40 years.

To learn more about additional legislation approved by the House to combat human trafficking, click here. 
Local Spotlight: BizTown Comes to Town

Congratulations to Junior Achievement of Western PA and their Director of Community Development, Robbie Zaremberg, for the recent launch of BizTown in western Pennsylvania. Thanks to sponsors like Gordon Foods, FedEx, Kuraray Noritake, Calgon Carbon Corporation and more, our local students can prepare for their lives and careers in a fun, fast-paced and hands-on environment.

I am pictured above with Pennsylvania Secretary of Community and Economic Development, Dennis Davin. We joined Allegheny County Executive, Rich Fitzgerald, and my House colleague Rep. Jason Ortitay to celebrate the arrival of BizTown in our region.
Krystal Biotech Announces New Findlay Township Facility

As co-chair of the House Life Science Caucus and chair of the Economic Development subcommittee, I am pleased to welcome Pittsburgh's Krystal Biotech, Inc. as they have broken ground on a 100,000 square foot, $75 million to $100 million gene therapy manufacturing facility in Findlay Township (near Pittsburgh International Airport) making it the largest biotech investment in the region to date. This expansion will double the company's employee base, creating 70 jobs.

Krystal's choice to expand in the city where they first established is a sign of confidence in our region's economy, talent, and community. I am thrilled that the company is committed to Pittsburgh.
Bill to Boost Cancer Treatment Options Awaits Governor’s Signature

One of my top priorities in the House this session has been advocating for improvements to the quality and scope of health care available in the Commonwealth.

Continuing that commitment to a Healthier PA, legislation to improve cancer treatment options for patients is now on the governor’s desk awaiting his signature.

House Bill 427 would provide Stage IV metastatic cancer patients access to the medication and treatments prescribed by their doctors, regardless of what their insurance plan typically covers.

Time is of the essence for patients fighting cancer. They should not have to get sicker and sicker before being allowed to try something their doctor is recommending that could extend the length and quality of their lives.
REAL ID Enforcement to Begin Oct. 1

As you have likely heard, the federal government will require all citizens to use a REAL ID or other federally accepted form of identification to board a commercial flight (including domestic flights) or visit a secure federal building that requires ID at the door beginning Oct. 1 of this year.

REAL ID is optional for Pennsylvanians, but if you plan to fly or visit a secure federal building and choose not to obtain a REAL ID, you will need another form of federally accepted identification, such as a U.S. passport or passport card or a military ID.

Federal regulations require that to be issued a REAL ID-compliant product, PennDOT must verify documents that ensure proof of identity; Social Security number; current, physical Pennsylvania address; and all legal name changes. Customers can bring the required documents to any PennDOT Driver License Center.

A list of accepted documents for verification may be found here.

More information about REAL ID in Pennsylvania, including frequently asked questions, can be found at www.penndot.gov/REALID.
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District Office:
1009 Beaver Grade Road, Suite 220, Moon Township, PA 15108 | Phone: (412) 262-3780, Fax: (412) 262-3783
Capitol Office:
Room 428, Irvis Office Building, PO Box 202044, Harrisburg PA 17120-2044 | Phone: (717) 787-6651 |
Email: vgaydos@pahousegop.com