Update and Reminder on Handicapped Parking Spaces
12/21/2018
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Legislative Update

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 The latest news from the State Capitol


Update and Reminder on Handicapped Parking Spaces
As each of us travel to various medical, professional or business facilities and seek parking, we readily see spaces that are reserved for those with disabilities. Sadly, we also note that some people who are not properly authorized to use these spaces do use them. Such misuse shows neither proper respect for those who do have disabilities, nor for the law.

According to the Commonwealth’s parking lot construction standards, approximately 4 percent of a parking lot is allocated for parking spaces for people with disabilities and even less space is available for an access aisle. Given the limited availability of disabled parking spaces, individuals who legally hold a disabled parking placard or plate need these spaces to be protected and properly enforced.

This year the General Assembly passed Act 144 of 2018 in an effort to modernize Pennsylvania’s disabled parking laws. Specifically, the law prohibits a person from obstructing a vehicle or part of a curb ramp or the access aisle (typically marked with diagonal lines) adjacent to a parking space reserved for a person with disabilities. Violators would face a fine of $100 to $300. The law also permits municipalities and local authorities to designate a particular space on a public street for a particular person or vehicle.

Pennsylvania law authorizes towing and/or penalties for vehicles that are illegally parked in spaces marked for people with disabilities. In order to park in one of these designated spaces you must obtain and display either a person with disabilities placard or registration plate from PennDOT. These placards and plates are universal and accepted in all 50 states. You must meet certain criteria and have your disability certified by an authorized health care provider, law enforcement or a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Regional Office Administrator.

For additional information, click here. For assistance in obtaining or submitting an application for a placard or registration plate, please feel free to contact my district office.
                                   

Keep Kids Safe: Follow School Bus Safety Laws
There have been too many tragic stories in the news lately about children getting hit by vehicles when getting on or off a school bus. These crashes can be avoided if motorists obey the Pennsylvania School Bus Stopping Law which requires motorists to stop at least 10 feet away from school buses that have their red lights flashing and stop arm extended.

These crashes can be avoided if motorists obey the Pennsylvania School Bus Stopping Law which requires motorists to stop at least 10 feet away from school buses that have their red lights flashing and stop arm extended.

Motorists must stop when they are behind the bus, meeting the bus or approaching an intersection where a bus is stopped. Motorists following or traveling alongside a school bus also must stop until the red lights have stopped flashing, the stop arm is withdrawn, and all children have reached safety.

A common question is whether a motorist must stop on a multi-lane highway when a bus is stopped. The answer is yes, a motorist must stop unless they are in the opposing lane of a highway divided by a physical barrier. Physical barriers include grassy medians, traditional or cable guide rails, or concrete median barriers. If there is no physical barrier between lanes, all lanes of traffic must stop if a school bus stops with its red lights flashing and stop arm extended.

Penalties for failure to obey school bus safety laws can result in a $250 fine, five points on a driving record and a 60-day license suspension.

Click here for more information and tips on school bus safety.
 

New Legislative Session Begins Tuesday, Jan. 1
The Pennsylvania House of Representatives will begin the 2019-20 Legislative Session on Tuesday, Jan. 1, with members taking the oath of office.

The oath will begin at noon and the ceremony will also include the adoption of House rules, election of the Speaker of the House and a joint session with the state Senate to certify election results. Live streaming of the entire ceremony will be available here.

After swearing-in, stay up-to-date on the latest news out of Harrisburg by subscribing to my legislative updates here and by following me on Facebook.
 

103rd Farm Show Kicks off Jan. 5
Celebrating one of Pennsylvania’s top industries, the Pennsylvania Farm Show near Harrisburg will kick off Saturday, Jan. 5. The show will run through Saturday, Jan. 12.

The Farm Show, which features 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive exhibits and 300 commercial exhibitors, emphasizes the importance of agriculture in daily life, highlights the latest in ag technology and advancements, and offers attractions for all ages.

Admission to the show is free, but parking is $15 per vehicle. Shuttle service is provided.

For all the latest news about the Farm Show, follow it on Facebook or visit  farmshow.pa.gov.
   
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Office Locations
Harrisburg Office: B-13 Main Capitol Building, PO Box 202170, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2170  | (717) 787-6740
District Office:10752 Bustleton Ave., Suite C, Philadelphia, PA 19116  | (215) 330-3711
Email: Mwhite@pahousegop.com
     
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