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Reichley Report


Newsletter for the People of the 134th Legislative District

Lehigh County: 1245 Chestnut Street, Unit #5, Emmaus, PA 18049 Phone: (610) 965-9933
Berks County: Bally Brook Industrial Park, 20 North Front Street, Bally, PA 19503 Phone: (610) 845-1425

Spring 2010

Dear Neighbor,
I have a number of events scheduled for March, so please mark your calendar if you’d like to attend any of them. For more
information on any of the events listed, directions to the event or to R.S.V.P., please call my district office at (610) 965-9933.
As always, for further information about what’s going on in Harrisburg, please check out my Web site at
You’ll find interactive V-clips – short video updates about important issues occurring each week in Harrisburg – as well as complete
text of all press releases, radio clips, a list of upcoming events, and photos from the Capitol and around the 134th District.
Also, please contact me at if you would like to receive our updates and newsletters over the Internet.
Interested persons can also follow my activities on and I have a Facebook fan page. Links to those sites are also on
my Web page, at

Upcoming Events
College Tuition Assistance Seminar Town Meetings Set for March
hosted by • Saturday, March 20
Reps. Doug Reichley (R-Berks/Lehigh) 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.
and Gary Day (R-Berks/Lehigh) Bally Senior Center
Wednesday, March 3 425 Chestnut St., Bally
7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Upper Macungie Township Building, • Thursday, March 25
8330 Schantz Rd., Breinigsville 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Emmaus Fire Company No. 1
Energy Expo 50 South 6th St., Emmaus
Tuesday, March 9
6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. • Saturday, March 27
Lower Macungie Community Center 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.
3400 Brookside Rd., Macungie Lehigh Lodge
2100 Route 100 South, Macungie
Special Needs Awareness Day
Saturday, March 13 • Wednesday, March 31
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Integrated Health Campus Building Cetronia Fire Company
250 Cetronia Rd., Allentown 18 South Scenic St., Allentown
Governor Proposes $1.2 Billion Budget Increase
Revenue collections running $525 million below estimates
On Feb. 9, Gov. Ed Rendell proposed a $29.03 billion budget for fiscal year 2010-11 that:
 Spends $26.27 billion in General Fund revenue.
 Spends $1.29 billion more than 2009-10 fiscal year.
 Increases spending by 4.6 percent.
 Relies on $2.6 billion in federal stimulus money, which will run out after this fiscal year.
 Assumes $800 million in new state bailout money will be approved by federal government.
 Eliminates state funding for many museums and higher education facilities.
 Increases spending for education, corrections, welfare and debt service.

Gov. Rendell proposes:
 $874 million in new taxes earmarked for a new ‘Stimulus Transition Reserve Fund.’ This includes:
 $531.5 million in new sales tax revenue achieved by lowering the sales tax to 4 percent but broadening the
tax, and removing the sales tax exemptions on 74 currently untaxed categories, such as non-prescription
drugs, dry cleaning, textbooks and beauty products.
 $140.2 million in business taxes, and removal of the sales tax discount incentive for businesses.
 $41.6 million tax on smokeless tobacco and cigars, amounting to 30 percent of the sales price.
 $160.7 million in taxes on natural gas extraction.

Pension Spike
 Gov. Rendell announced his plan to increase the employer contribution rate to Public School Employees Retirement
System (PSERS) to 5.78 percent rate. The current rate is 4.78 percent.
 PSERS recommended 8.22 percent employer contribution in Dec. 2009. Both the state and school district pay into

the PSERS fund ensuring its solvency.

 Gov. Rendell’s plan does nothing to convert those hired in the future to a defined contribution plan.

Table Gaming Coming House Passes Bill Banning Texting, Hand-

to Pennsylvania Held Cell Phone Use While Driving
Despite efforts to bring tighter A proposal to make it illegal to use a hand-held cell phone while driving
enforcement and background checks to has passed the House. The bill still awaits action in the state Senate and would
Pennsylvania’s current gaming laws, a new have to be signed by the governor before it can become law.
act has been passed to expand gambling to The proposal seeks to reduce the number of accidents caused by distracted
include table games. driving resulting from hand-held cell phones and other devices. Hands-free cell
I voted against the legislation because phone use would be permitted.
of the lack of reforms and diversion of I was glad to work on developing language, which received bipartisan
funds away from property tax relief. support, to improve traffic safety and reduce distracted driving.
Many House members supported If enacted, House Bill 2070 would allow a police officer observing a driver
an amendment to the state gaming law texting or using a cell phone to pull over the driver and issue a warning or fine.
to transfer the background checks now The summary offense carries a $50 fine and any applicable surcharges.
performed by the Pennsylvania Gaming The fine would be doubled in a work zone or school zone. Seventy-five
Control Board to an independent agency like percent of the fine revenue will be used for a statewide driver awareness program
the Attorney General, or the Pennsylvania to discourage distracted driving.
State Police which already investigates
licensees, board members and key staff. Carole Holder of Lilac Corner Farms in Slatington,
Also, the new law does not provide was at the 94th Pennsylvania Farm Show on Thursday,
further property tax relief to homeowners. Jan. 14,
This was the original intent of the law showing her
legalizing slot machine gambling. dairy goats,
I offered an amendment to use the Felicity
(left) and
state’s share of table games revenue to help
prevent the coming teachers’ pension fund
spike. This would have help to protect
property owners from future increases in Rep. Reichley with his daughter at
the school district property tax. the burial of the Emmaus 2009 Time
Unfortunately, the House majority Capsule on Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009, at
decided that revenue from licenses and the Emmaus Public Library.
fees from table gaming would go into the
General Fund. On Dec. 3, State Fire Commissioner Ed Mann attended
With no additional revenue being a Fire Company and Emergency Responder Grant
deposited into the Property Tax Relief Seminar held at the Kasych Pavilion at the Lehigh
Fund, table games may actually lower the Valley Hospital. Rep. Reichley toured the trauma unit
amount of revenue set aside for property with the commissioner and Amy Grill, BS, NREMT-
P, EMS, and Inter-Facility Liaison for Lehigh Valley
tax relief.
Health Network.