HARRISBURG – Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint) was back in Harrisburg Wednesday working to restore some level of local control over the governor’s ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, specifically those impacting students, families and business owners.
The first order of business was a vote to override the governor’s veto of House Bill 2787
, a bill that would have given local school officials authority to make decisions about sports, activities and spectators. Although the bill initially passed the House with 155 “yes” votes earlier in the month, two dozen members changed their votes and opted to sustain the governor’s veto on Wednesday. The vote to override was 130-71, five votes short of the two-thirds majority required.
“I am disappointed and frustrated by those members who essentially chose to vote according to the governor’s wishes instead of with those of their constituents,” Causer said. “More than six months into the pandemic, and with virus cases varying widely across the state, the time for the governor’s unilateral, cookie-cutter approach to dealing with COVID-19 has long since passed. School officials were already empowered to make decisions about how to return students to class. It only makes sense they would have the same authority on school-related activities.”
While the override vote failed, Causer was pleased to report the passage of House Bill 2513
, which would ease restrictions on the state’s bars and restaurants to help them survive the pandemic while operating safely.
“The governor’s orders have been especially hard on bars and restaurants that, until recently, were limited to just 25% capacity and other limitations that make it very difficult to keep their doors open and their staff employed,” Causer said. “We need to stand with our small business owners and help them both operate safely and protect their livelihoods.”
The measure passed by a vote of 145-56 and now heads to the governor’s desk.
Representative Martin T. Causer
House Majority Policy Committee Chairman
67th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives