My office has been having a lot of problems with green screens. Getting the lightning bolt with the 501 error code, WID printer problems etc. I just heard from another association member that they are having a lot of issues also. If you are having green screen problems, please let me know and be very specific what those problems are. I will try to find someone at PennDOT to help. If you have already solved the problem please let me know how. Thanks Jo
Hello All – If you receive an email from the association asking for money to be donated, please don’t as it is a scam. The email has this image in the body.
Dear PAOLMA Members,
This week three of the 4 legislative caucuses in the Pennsylvania General Assembly elected their leadership teams for the 2021-22 legislative session which begins in January, 2021. House Republicans chose their team earlier this week as did House Democrats and Senate Republicans today. Senate Democrats will chose their leaders next week.
*Speaker- Bryan Cutler (Lancaster)
Majority Leader- Kerry Benninghoff (Centre)
Majority Appropriations Committee Chairman- Stan Saylor (York)
Majority Whip- Donna Oberlander (Clarion)
Majority Caucus Chairman- Mike Reese (Westmoreland)
Majority Caucus Administrator- Kurt Masser (Columbia/Northumberland)
Majority Caucus Secretary- Martina White (Philadelphia)
Majority Policy Committee Chairman- Martin Causer (Bradford)
* The Speaker of the House is elected by the entire body of the House in an election which will occur on reorganization of the House in January, 2021. Today’s vote was a nominating vote by the Republican Caucus but does not afford Mr. Cutler the Speaker’s position until all Republicans and Democrats vote for the position in January. Democrats have the right to nominate a member of their caucus for Speaker of the House but, of course, would not have enough votes to elect that person unless the Republicans in the majority decided to support the Democrat candidate for Speaker—which is highly unlikely.
Minority Leader- Joanna McClinton (Philadelphia)
Minority Appropriations Committee Chairman- Matt Bradford (Montgomery)
Minority Whip- Jordan Harris (Philadelphia)
Minority Caucus Chairman- Dan Miller (Allegheny)
Minority Caucus Administrator- Mike Schlossberg (Lehigh)
Minority Caucus Secretary- Tina Davis (Bucks)
Minority Policy Committee Chairman- Ryan Bizzarro (Erie)
*President Pro Tempore– Jake Corman (Centre)
Majority Leader- Kim Ward (Westmoreland)
Majority Appropriations Committee Chairman- Pat Browne (Lehigh)
Majority Whip- John Gordner (Columbia/Northumberland)
Majority Caucus Chairman- Bob Mensch (Montgomery/Bucks)
Majority Caucus Secretary- Ryan Aument (Lancaster)
*As in the House Speaker’s position, the Senate President Pro Tempore must be elected by the entire body of the Senate. That vote, with both Republicans and Democrats casting votes, did occur today and Senator Corman has been elected to the position of President Pro Tempore for the 2021-22 legislative session in the Senate
Dear PAOLMA Members,
The counting of General Election ballots in Pennsylvania is still not complete. As of this hour:
Former Vice President Biden has a 49.74%-49.11% lead over President Trump. Under state law an automatic recount of any statewide race is permitted if the winning margin in the race is 0.5% or less. In the presidential race the Secretary of State (Democrat Kathy Boockvar) would have to call for the recount. Boockvar has been heavily criticized in the past month for her department’s administration of the election mechanics in Pennsylvania, and the Speaker of the House and Senate Majority Leader have both publicly called for her resignation in the past week. Finally, the Trump campaign has filed numerous lawsuits in Commonwealth Court regarding voting/counting irregularities and the inability to attend and view the vote counting of mail-in and absentee ballots. One can only wonder the dramatic scene that might occur when PA’s 20 presidential Electors arrive in Harrisburg to cast their votes on December 14, 2020!
The PA congressional delegation did not change. The current field of 9 Democrats and 9 Republicans were all re-elected and will return to Congress for the 117th Session. Democrat Conor Lamb won a close and hard-fought battle in Southwest PA as did Democrats Susan Wild in the Lehigh Valley/Allentown and Matt Cartwright in Northeast PA. Republican Scott Perry was a national target of the DCCC in 2020 but garnered 56% of the vote on the way to victory.
A “Red Wave” swept through the 3 PA row offices– each currently held by a Democrat. Democrat Josh Shapiro will now adjust his focus to running for Governor in 2022 after narrowly defeating a no-name Republican with 50.6% of the vote. His victory was not a surprise but the margin leads one to pause. In a historic race, Republican Tim DeFoor becomes the first person of color to be elected to one of Pennsylvania’s 3 statewide row offices as he has easily been elected Auditor General. A bright political career begins! Incumbent Treasurer Joe Torsella (D) is in trouble and still trails Republican Stacy Garrity by 81,000 votes in his re-election bid. This seat may flip in the next 24 hours.
One State Senate seat is still too close to call and Allegheny County will continue to count mail-in and provisional ballot votes through Tuesday of this week to determine the outcome. A Republican challenger leads incumbent Democrat Jim Brewster by 400 votes with 3,200 ballots to count. If Brewster loses, the Republican majority in the State Senate will be 29-20-1. Of course, if he wins, that will shift to 28-21-1. Too close to call and both sides appear optimistic. Currently Republicans have lost one incumbent in Southeast PA and Democrats have lost a member in Southwest PA—continuing the statewide trend that eastern PA is a growing Democrat demographic and western PA is growing as a Republican base.
In the House it appears that the Republicans will grow their current majority to 113-90 over the Democrats with the surprising upset occurring for current House Minority Leader Frank Dermody. Again, in Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), where the counting continues, Leader Dermody is trailing. If he loses, as anticipated, the Republicans will have flipped 4 Democrat seats and lost one Republican seat.
In a not-so-scientific practice I have tracked the change of membership in the General Assembly in Pennsylvania every two years since the early 1990’s and have generally concluded that, on average, the 253 seats see a 13%-16% change in membership after these biennial elections (with one or two cycles being notable exceptions). If current election results hold the Assembly will see a 12.2% turnover as a result of the 2020 election.
Leadership elections for each of the four caucuses in the Senate and House had been scheduled for tomorrow, November 10th, to select new leadership teams for the 2021-22 session of the General Assembly. The uncertainty of election outcomes has forced the postponement of three of the four caucus leadership elections to a later date. Only House Republicans will elect their new leadership team on November 10th. Senate Republicans have postponed until November 12th. The Democrat caucuses are still waiting to decide on new dates.
Finally, legislatively, there is a good chance that the General Assembly will schedule session for November 16-18, 2020 to enact the remainder of the 2020-21 fiscal year budget. As you may recall, Pennsylvania funded a budget in late May, 2020 for only the first 5 months of the fiscal 2020-21 year to end on November 30, 2020. The General Assembly will now return to fund the remaining 7 months of government operations and programs. Upon completion of the remaining budget the General Assembly is expected to recess for the year, the 2019-20 legislative session will conclude by constitutional mandate on November 30, 2020 and a new General Assembly will be sworn in during the first week of January 2021.
We will try to provide a very brief synopsis of the 2020 election in Pennsylvania once all votes have been counted and the Department of State publishes final and official results in all races.
Dear PAOLMA Members,
The results from Pennsylvania’s General Election voting are incomplete.
Two factors contribute to what may be a three-day wait for final results in all elections in Pennsylvania.
Since the 2018 election the General Assembly and Governor Tom Wolf enacted law that allowed for mail-in voting, drop-box voting and the prohibition of straight ticket voting. In mid-September the Democratic-controlled Supreme Court issued an Order based on a suit filed by the Republican party in Pennsylvania. The complaint sought to have all ballots in Pennsylvania, of whatever type, counted by the conclusion of Election Day, 2020. The Supreme Court held that ballots arriving after Election Day, November 3, 2020, could still be counted as long as they are either postmarked by November 3rd or it is proven that they were not sent after November 3rd. Ballots must be received by November 6, 2020 at 5:00 PM. The US Supreme Court decided not to hear two cases filed in late October by the Pennsylvania GOP so the state Supreme Court Order stands.
As a result, many county courthouses in Pennsylvania have not fully completed the counting of ballots. Only 46% of ballots have been counted in Philadelphia City/County. About the same in Allegheny County (Pittsburgh). Counting was suspended last night in those locales and continues at 9:00 AM this morning. Because the Court did not mandate the counting of mail-in and drop ballots prior to election day as ballots came into the courthouses, these larger jurisdictions have piles of uncounted ballots in their possession this morning.
President Trump leads former Vice President Biden statewide by about 675,000 votes—but with many uncounted ballots in Allegheny County and Philadelphia County (and the Democratic-vote rich ring counties of Southeast PA) this margin will shrink and may disappear completely. Statewide, 57% of the total vote has been reported.
Congressional races are still undecided although it appears that Republican Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-1) is holding a comfortable lead and that suburban Philadelphia district is carrying Republican at the top of the ticket and down ballot as well.
Conservative Congressman Scott Perry (PA-10) appears to have held off the challenge of PA Auditor General, Democrat Eugene Depasquale in that central PA seat..
Democrat “Wunderkind” Conor Lamb (PA-17) is in a close tussle in his suburban Pittsburgh seat where President Trump is faring very well. With so many ballots still uncounted in Allegheny County it is foolhardy to predict this race at this time—but this will be a close vote at the end. Republican Sean Parnell has been a formidable opponent.
Pennsylvania’s 50 Member State Senate is currently in Republican Majority (28-21-1). Republicans were worried about losing control of the majority there, but this morning they appear to have picked up one or two western PA Democrat seats while only losing one suburban Philadelphia seat. A final majority for Republicans in the State Senate might be (30-19-1) or (31-18-1). The Republicans will hold a comfortable majority in the State Senate in the 2012-2022 legislative session.
The State House is currently in Republican majority at 110-93. Pre-election predictions had Republicans losing seats and, perhaps, the majority for the coming session. It now appears that a comfortable Republican majority will hold in the State House for the 2021-2022 legislative session. Incumbent western PA Democrat House members are fighting for their lives to remain in office as the “red wave” is now beginning to consume Pennsylvania west of the Susquehanna River. However, Republican House members in the Philadelphia suburbs still have to wait for the results of tens of thousands of uncounted ballots, and are predicted to lose some of their seats. It is just too early to know the final numerical make-up of the House of Representatives for next session although it is pretty clear that the Republicans will be in charge.
PA Attorney General Josh Shapiro (D), Democrat State Treasurer Joe Torsella, and the Democrat (Philadelphia-based) candidate for State Auditor General in that open seat race, are all trailing their Republican opponents. All three Democrats live in the Democratic-rich registered counties of Philadelphia and suburban Philadelphia. Shapiro is the prohibitive Democrat favorite to be the party’s 2022 nominee for Governor in PA. Torsella is also considering a run for Governor or the US Senate in 2022 on the Democrat ticket. Current results would derail some pretty significant political careers. BUT with less than half of Philadelphia’s ballots still uncounted and many uncounted ballots still in the ring counties surrounding the City, the complexion of these races is likely to change dramatically.
Bottom line: most of the Republican “red” counties in Pennsylvania have reported in their full vote counts for the 2020 General election. Many highly registered Democrat counties have as many as half their ballots still uncounted and unreported. Courthouses have until Friday at 5:00 PM to finalize those counts.
Please look for an update from me on the 2020 election results from Pennsylvania in the coming hours!
Dear PAOLMA Members,
This morning the House Transportation Committee considered and voted out HB 1509 sponsored by Rep. Barry Jozwiak (R-Reading) by a vote of 19-6. All 15 Republican committee members were joined by Democrat committee members Donatucci (Philadelphia), Neilson (Philadelphia), O’Mara (Springfield, Delaware County), and Warren (Bucks) in passing the legislation out of committee.
As you know, HB 1509 was written to mandate a 2-in-1 vehicle sticker to demonstrate legal registration and physical inspection of every vehicle in PA which would be placed on the rear license plate. In a compromise between Transportation Committee Chairman Tim Hennessey
(R-Pottstown/Elverson) and Mr. Jozwiak, and in order to garner more rank-in-file support, Mr. Hennessey offered a “gut and replace”
amendment to HB 1509 which changed the legislation to a simple mandate that a registration sticker needed to be affixed to the license plate.
Inspection stickers shall remain where they are currently required by law. That amendment was passed by the Committee on an 18-7 vote with all Republicans and Democrats Donatucci, Neilson, and Warren voting in favor of the amendment. Rep. O’Mara stated later in the meeting that she supported the final bill but had voted against the amendment because she actually supported the concept of a 2-in-1 sticker.
Committee Minority Democrat Chairman, and former PennDOT employee, Mike Carroll (Hughestown) vigorously debated in opposition to the bill using the typical hackneyed arguments proffered by PennDOT for close to a decade. The removal of stickers saves PennDOT $3 Million per year, stickers are an inconvenience to the consumer, consumers cannot get a sticker if they renew registration or register on-line on the PennDOT website (which is incorrect), many other states have eliminated the use of license plate stickers (also incorrect), and stickers are stolen and clipped from plates forcing drivers to pay more money for duplicates.
Republican committee members Rep. Doyle Heffley (Weissport) and Rep.
John Lawrence (West Grove) made cogent, impassioned, and even personal arguments for bringing stickers back to the license plates.
Thanks to all of the PAOLMA members who have contacted committee members in the past few days to educate them about this important issue and this legislation. We encourage you to now go back to each representative you communicated with and personally thank them for their support of the HB 1509 and for their vote to send the bill to the Floor of the House for consideration. Only Democrats Mike Carroll, Ed Gainey, Sara Innamorato, Steve Kinsey, Kyle Mullins, and Mike Schlossberg did not support passage by voting “No”. Saying “THANK YOU” is an important component of the legislative process and we cannot stress enough how important it is for all of us to thank our friends and the supporters of HB 1509. We encourage you to do so soon.
HB 1509 will now proceed to the House Floor for a vote. It must receive consideration on three days in the House. First Consideration occurred this afternoon and a final vote will be held on Third Consideration. Such has yet to be scheduled by House leaders.
Representative Jozwiak immediately began working with our Association today to convince House Republican leaders to bring the bill up for a Floor vote soon. In the coming days we will communicate how you can help “whip” rank-in-file member votes in support of HB 1509 to assure passage in the House.
Congratulations!!! Today was a good day for PAOLMA and our membership. The Committee vote was another important step in the legislative process, and while there is plenty of work yet to be done on this legislation, we are proud of your efforts and thank you for the great work that has been done to reach this important milestone!
Board of Directors
Dear PAOLMA Members,
The House Transportation Committee is expected to consider HB 1509, sponsored by Representative Barry Jozwiak (R-Reading) , at its committee meeting on Thursday, September 17, 2020 at 10:00 AM in Room G-50 of the Irvis House Office Building in the Capitol Complex in Harrisburg.
WE NEED YOUR HELP IN THE NEXT THREE DAYS CONTACTING MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE TO ASK THEM TO VOTE “YES” ON HB 1509!!!!
HB 1509 currently amends Title 75 to require a 2-in-1 registration and inspection sticker. The bill will be called up by House Transportation Committee Chairman Representative Tim Hennessey (R-Pottstown/Elverson) who will immediately offer an amendment (A04099) to the bill that will gut and replace the current language in the bill and simply require PennDOT to issue validating registration stickers upon the issuance or renewal of a vehicle registration to indicate that registration is complete (a copy of the original bill and the intended amendment is attached to this email).
PAOLMA SUPPORTS both the amendment of offered by Chairman Hennessey and the newly amended version of HB 1509 that will exist after his amended is voted into the bill.
PLEASE ASK COMMITTEE MEMBERS WITH WHOM YOU SPEAK TO VOTE “YES” ON THE CHAIRMAN’S AMENDMENT TO HB 1509 AND TO VOTE “YES’” ON FINAL PASSAGE OF THE BILL IN COMMITTEE.
If you live or have stores near any of the following committee members please contact the representative’s HARRISBURG office by email, text, or telephone before Thursday with the above request. Members included:
Rep. Rosemary Brown (R-East Stroudsburg) email@example.com
Rep. Lynda Culver (R-Sunbury) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Mindy Fee (R-Manheim) email@example.com
Rep. Marcia Hahn (R-Wind Gap) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Doyle Heffley (R-Weissport) email@example.com
Rep. Aaron Kaufer (R-Luzerne) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep John Lawrence (R-West Grove) email@example.com
Rep Jim Marshall (R-Beaver Falls) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Mike Peifer (R-Hawley) email@example.com
Rep. Greg Rothman (R-Camp Hill) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Lou Schmitt (R-Altoona) email@example.com
Rep. Meghan Schroeder (R-Buckingham) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Todd Stephens (R-North Wales) email@example.com
Rep. Martina White (R-Philadelphia) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Mike Carroll (D-Hughestown) email@example.com (Minority Democrat Chairman of House Transportation Committee)
Rep. Maria Donatucci (D-Philadelphia) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Ed Gainey (D-Pittsburgh) email@example.com
Rep. Sara Innamorato (D-Pittsburgh) RepInnamorato@pahouse.net
Rep. Stephen Kinsey (D-Philadelphia) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Kyle Mullins (D-Dunmore) email@example.com
Rep. Ed Neilson (D-Philadelphia) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Jennifer O’Mara (D-Springfield Delaware County) email@example.com
Rep. Mike Schlossberg (D-Allentown) firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Perry Warren (D-Yardley) email@example.com
The message in your conversation with each member should include:
- Since stickers were removed from plates in 2017 PA has seen a loss of millions of dollars in registration fees because drivers are simply not re-registering their vehicles (lost $22 M in 2017, lost $10 M in 2018);
- Registration numbers in 2019 dropped so much that PennDOT refuses to publish the figures on their website as is usually expected;
- The bill DOES NOT increase fees or costs to register a vehicle;
- Without stickers there is a chance for an increase in uninsured motorists;
- Without stickers there is a likelihood of many more unregistered and unsafe vehicles on PA roads.
Given the current times and attitudes in PA and America it may not be a good idea to discuss that stickers help law enforcement authorities identify unregistered (and perhaps uninsured) vehicles. In particular, Democrat members of the committee may oppose the bill thinking that it increases law enforcement authority and reach. Be careful!
Please email a quick synopsis of any conversations you have with members of the Committee by close of business on Wednesday, September 16, 2020 to Jo Naccarato.
THANK YOU for your help and support!!
The Board of Directors
Yesterday, Governor Wolf announced a $225 Million grant program for Pennsylvania small businesses that have been impacted by Covid-19.
This funding comes from the $2.6 Billion of federal CARES Act available to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
The Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) will oversee three funding options available to eligible businesses, while Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) will distribute the grants to eligible businesses.
Use the link to review the Governor’s Press Release on the new program. We should talk soon if you believe this program might be of value to you. We will keep you informed as we learn more about the program. If PAOLMA Members need help please have them contact me.
All the best!!
Dear PAOLMA Members,
Earlier this afternoon, Governor Tom Wolf vetoed HB 2388 (Rep.
Mihalek-R-Allegheny County) which would have provided all messengers and agents with a blanket industry waiver from the DCED Business Closure Order of March 19, 2020. We have not read his veto message related to the bill yet. I will confer with the PAOLMA Board soon in order to consider our next steps regarding this issue.
Thank you for the support and effort you expended in order to get this legislation enacted. Your contact with members and staff of the General Assembly was pivotal in having the bill pass both the Senate and House. It is unfortunate that Governor Wolf could not support the opening of your businesses at this time.
Dear PAOLMA Members,
This afternoon the House of Representatives agreed to concur on Senate amendments to HB 2388 (Mihalek-R-Allegheny County) in a vote of 123-79. The House concurrence means the bill is now headed to Governor Tom Wolf’s desk for signature or veto. Governor Wolf has 10 days to sign or veto the bill. He could do nothing with the bill which, by the language of the PA Constitution, would mean the bill is automatically enacted into law.
109 Republicans and 14 Democrats supported the bill including the following Democrats:
We need your help in contacting any Democrat House members who represent your stores or your place of residence. We want you to call and email those Democrat House members and ask them to call Governor Wolf and encourage him to sign HB 2388 so that you can return to work. Clearly, if you live or work in a district represented by one of the 14 Democrats who voted for this bill (see above), we need you to ask them to contact the Governor soon and encourage his signature on the bill. This must start on Friday morning as Governor Wolf can act on the bill at any time now.
Tomorrow, PAOLMA Board Chairman John Yurconic will also be sending a letter to Governor Wolf on behalf of the Association requesting that he sign the bill so that you and your employees may return to work.