Workforce Development hits the House floor
Lawmakers say proposed bills will increase access to training, connect employers to workers, and build pathways for stu

The bills would require the departments of education, labor and industry, and agriculture to develop a comprehensive online career resource center; create an inventory workforce development programs at the secondary and postsecondary levels; and provide tax credits to businesses that contribute to career and technical partnership organizations.

A bipartisan package of workforce development bills is on the move this week in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. These bills (HB) aims to move Pennsylvanians beyond minimum wage jobs and into family-sustaining careers. The bills are designed to increase access to training, better connect employers to qualified workers, and build stronger pathways for students entering the workforce.
Identified by bill number, the sponsors and summaries for votes scheduled to be considered in committee or on the House floor this week are listed below:
HB 131, Rep. Barry Jozwiak, R-Berks: Updates state liquor code to match state definition of “alcoholic cider” to match federal definition.
HB 325, Rep. Daniel Deasy, D-Allegheny: Establishes the “Pennsylvania Distilled Spirits Industry Promotion Board.”
HB 327, Rep. Perry Warren, D-Bucks: Modifies language in law allowing municipalities to hold a referendum to allow the sale of liquor.
HB 561, Rep. Sheryl Delozier, R-Cumberland: Allows minors to perform music in a licensed establishment so long as the minor is not compensated and is supervised by a parent or guardian.
HB 265, Rep. Craig Staats, R-Bucks: Expands a database that allows students and potential students to plan where courses, programs, certificates, and diplomas transfer among public schools and institutions of higher education.
HB 297, Rep. Zachary Mako, R-Northampton/Lehigh: Requires the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) to develop materials outlining workforce needs including training opportunities and future earning potential. Also allows for community colleges and other technical and/or trade schools to attend career/college fairs.
HB 334, Rep. Seth Grove, R-York: Requires PDE to establish a standard application for schools to seek approval to establish or renew a classification of instructional program.
HB 393, Rep. Patrick Harkins, D-Erie: Requires PDE, and the departments of Labor and Industry and Agriculture to develop and maintain a comprehensive online career resource center for students, parents, educators and school officials to provide information on the value and impact of career and technical education (CTE), career pathways, data and statistics on employment opportunities and compensation, postsecondary options, and statewide and regional articulation agreements.
HB 394, Rep. Gerald Mullery, D-Luzerne: Requires PDE and the Department of Labor and Industry to conduct a complete inventory of existing workforce development programs at both the secondary and postsecondary levels.
HB 395, Rep. James Roebuck Jr., D-Philadelphia: Allows CTE programs or a cluster of programs to establish occupational advisory committees at the Intermediate Unit (IU) level to serve multiple school districts or Career and Technical Centers (CTCs).
HB 396, Rep. James Roebuck Jr., D-Philadelphia: Requires each local Workforce Development Board (WDB) to include in its membership at least one administrator of a Career and Technical Center whose attendance area is covered by the service area of the WDB.
HB 522, Rep. Mike Tobash, R-Schuylkill/Dauphin: Establishes the “Career and Technical Education Investment Incentive Program,” which would provide tax credits to businesses that contribute to career and technical partnership organizations.
HB 350, Rep. Jim Rigby, R-Cambria/Somerset: Changes rules for tracking precious metal sales and helps law enforcement potentially recover stolen property.
HB 584, Rep. William Kortz, D-Allegheny: Creates a specific fishing license exemption for participants in organized therapeutic fishing activities.
HB 617, Rep. Keith Gillespie, R-York: Provides for a discounted general hunting license for Hunter Trapper Education (HTE) instructors by creating a “Volunteer Instructor License.”
SB 113, Sen. John DiSanto, R-Perry/Dauphin: Require the forfeiture of pension benefits for public employees that are convicted or plead guilty or no contest to any job-related felony offense.
HB 82, Rep. Rob Kauffman, R-Franklin: Makes it unlawful for a person to retain payment, which should go to a health care provider, for his own use.
HB 97, Rep. Kathy Rapp, R-Warren/Crawford/Forest: Amends the Crimes Code by adding “electronic nicotine delivery systems” to the sections that currently make it illegal to sell tobacco products to minors and, for students, to use tobacco products on school grounds.
HB 332, Rep. Seth Grove, R-York: Allows the Superior Court to create a Commerce Court program (modeled after program in Philadelphia).
HB 309, Rep. Tom Mehaffie, R-Dauphin: Requires all day care centers to post their rating as part of the Keystone Stars program.
HB 407, Rep. Kurt Masser, R-Northumberland/Columbia/Montour: Updates the definition of “blight.”
HB 374, Rep. Garth Everett, R-Lycoming/Union: Establishes the “Keystone Tree Fund” to fund a tree vitalization program and a riparian forest buffer grant program, and allows a person to make a $3 contribution to the fund when electronically renewing a driver's license, ID card or vehicle registration through PennDOT's website.
HB 262, Rep. Carl Metzgar, R-Somerset/Bedford: Eliminates the inheritance tax rate for transfers of property to or for the use of a child aged 21 years or younger from a natural parent, adoptive parent or step-parent.
HB 296, Rep. Tarah Toohil, R-Luzerne: Provides a tax credit for families who provide permanency to children in the care of Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services.
HB 538, Rep. Marty Flynn, D-Lackawanna: Establishes a state income tax exemption for Olympic prize winnings and medals received from the United States Olympic Committee on account of competition in the Olympic Games or Paralympic Games.
HB 280, Rep. R. Lee James, R-Venango/Butler): Increases the periods of time allotted for parties to appeal the determination of an Unemployment Compensation (UC) Service Center and the decision of a UC referee.
HB 422, Rep. Sheryl Delozier, R-Cumberland: Creates a building code official “trainee” program.
HB 425, Rep. Ryan Mackenzie, R-Lehigh/Berks: Creates CareerBound, a program to strengthen the connection between Pennsylvania’s students and the next generation of high-priority careers.
HB 64, Rep. Harry Readshaw, D-Allegheny: Amends the Bureau of Professional and Occupations Affairs Act, allowing professionals to carryover accrued continuing education credits for biennial terms.
HB 138, Rep. Christopher Quinn, R-Delaware: Provides further qualifications for license and examinations for physical therapists and physical therapist assistants.
HB 510, Rep. Paul Schemel, R-Franklin: Amends the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Law by permitting a municipality to adopt a resolution instead of enacting an ordinance, unless specifically required by any other state law.
HB 548, Rep. Joe Emrick, R-Northampton: Amends the Borough Code and Third Class City Code to allow officials to set their annual tax millage rate by resolution.
HB 370, Rep. Kate Klunk, R-York: Amends the Agricultural Area Security Law to provide for restrictions, limitations and subdivision on preserved farmland.
HB 404, Rep. John Lawrence, R-Chester/Lancaster: Adds the “Tree of Heaven” plant, a favorite food source of the invasive spotted lanternfly, to the list of noxious weeds in Pennsylvania.
HB 441, Rep. Curt Sonney, R-Erie: Allows wind power generation systems on preserved farmland.
HB 324, Rep. Keith Gillespie, R-York: Allows municipalities to develop micro-enterprise loans to help start small businesses in blighted downtown communities.
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