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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.
With the conclusion of Appropriations Committee hearings this past Thursday, my colleagues and I will soon get back to work for the people of Pennsylvania. The House Health Committee also held a public hearing last week, the subject of which being the medical effects and regulatory background of the hemp product CBD. We discussed the steps necessary to ensure its safe use, and I outlined my concerns in an article you will find below.

The House returns to session next week as we enter the next stage of the budget process. I look forward to keeping you posted on the latest developments as the House begins to craft legislation that will eventually become this year’s state budget.

If you enjoy these weekly emails, be sure to keep up with me on Facebook , Twitter  and Instagram for the latest news from Harrisburg and our district.    


Valerie Gaydos

In this edition:
  •   Health Committee Examines CBD in Public Hearing
  •   Hearings on Governor’s $36 Billion Budget Proposal Conclude 
  •   Local Spotlight: Funds for Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens and the Borough of Sewickley 
  •   Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement Program in Effect 
  •   Turnpike Commission Offering Summer Jobs
Health Committee Examines CBD in Public Hearing

My colleagues and I in the House Health Committee held a public hearing last week to discuss the impact of cannabidiol (CBD) in medical treatment, and the current state of CBD regulation in the Commonwealth.

CBD is a valuable curative, but it must be made safe. It turns out that there is a loophole that allows CBD produced from industrial hemp to go untested for anything other than THC level. That means that the things you buy with CBD in it are not always tested for things like heavy metals, bacteria and other things that can make you sick. This must be fixed to ensure safe use.

I questioned testifiers before the House Health Committee about regulation, testing and labeling of industrial hemp and CBD in the Commonwealth.

 Listen to my line of questioning here.
 You can watch the hearing in its entirety by clicking here.
Hearings on Governor’s $36 Billion Budget Proposal Conclude

The first step of the budget process is now complete, as the House Appropriations Committee concluded its in-depth review of our state agencies’ funding needs last Thursday.

Over the last three weeks, members of the committee have examined overspending by the Wolf administration during the current year’s budget. The committee heard testimony from state agencies in order to identify areas of problem spending or items that should have been anticipated during the budget negotiation process.

With the hearings now finished, lawmakers can move forward with developing a state budget that funds the core functions of government while also being considerate of the taxpayers who will foot the bill.

Additional information about the 2020-21 state budget proposal, as well as archived video of the budget hearings, may be found here.
Local Spotlight: Funds for Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens and the Borough of Sewickley

I recently had the honor of presenting a check for $50,000 in grant funds to the Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens which will go toward the construction of a new, state-of-the-art welcome center. Senator Pam Iovino joined me in presenting this funding, which was awarded by the Gaming Economic Development Fund.

We also presented $150,000 in grant funds to the Borough of Sewickley for improvements to War Memorial Park, including the restoration of the park stream and the replacement of a culvert.
Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement Program in Effect

As of Wednesday, March 4, drivers speeding through certain active work zones in the state could find themselves being cited for the offense through the new Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement (AWZSE) program.

Designed to slow traffic and improve safety for both highway workers and travelers, the program is being operated by a partnership of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) and Pennsylvania State Police.

Beginning this week, motorists found to be speeding will receive a warning letter for a first offense, a violation notice and $75 fine for a second offense, and a violation notice and $150 fine for third and subsequent offenses. These violations are civil penalties only; no points will be assessed to driver’s licenses.

In 2018, there were 1,804 work zone crashes in Pennsylvania, resulting in 23 fatalities, and 43% of work zone crashes resulted in fatalities and/or injuries. Since 1970, PennDOT has lost 89 workers in the line of duty. The PA Turnpike has lost 45 workers since 1945.
Turnpike Commission Offering Summer Jobs

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is now accepting applications for its summer employment program. Available positions include toll collector, maintenance, clerical, engineering and information technology.

All eligible applicants must be at least 18 years of age and completed a secondary education program such as high school or GED and be enrolled in a postgraduate program at the time of hiring. Applicants will also be subject to a Pennsylvania criminal background check screening.

All applications must be submitted online at www.paturnpike.com/employment, and applicants should select “Summer Work” in the first step of the registration process. Copies of online applications should be sent to my Harrisburg office by Friday, April 10.
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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