Monday, January 31, 2005

Stealth legislation update

Ed Goppelt over at hallwatch.org demonstrates the pattern of behavior in Harrisburg lately, in which major legislation is sneaked into play as an amendment mere hours before the other legislation comes up for a vote, giving other legislators little or no time to find out what they're putting into law, let alone subject it to an open debate. We posted previously here about how changes in homeowner rights in zoning decisions got undermined as part of a bill on trash collection fines, but other examples include the protection of factory farms, legalization of slot machines (!), and handling of domestic partner benefits.
For example Senator Vincent J. Fumo authorized statewide gambling by amending a bill having to do with fingerprinting of racetrack employees. The original HB 2330 was just 2 pages long. After being amended the Bill ballooned to a 146 page blueprint for the creation of a new industry whose fees would fund property tax relief.
Looks like it's averaging almost one of these games per legislative year, and it's time for somebody to put the brakes on this and make sure that major issues get discussed before new regulations are passed.

(via PhillyFuture)

1 Comments:

Blogger PSoTD said...

And yet, there will be hardly a peep about this from the Capitol Press Corps... oh, they might whine a bit about it, but they don't hammer this home as an issue. Obfuscating legislative maneuvres in the dark is the devil they know...

3:56 PM  

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