State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Katie Meyer covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.

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Date set for joint session on opioid abuse

Written by Katie Meyer, Capitol Bureau Chief | Sep 20, 2016 8:22 PM

Several lawmakers spoke at a rally for the Heroin, Opioid Prevention and Education (or HOPE) Caucus in the Capitol rotunda. (Photo by Katie Meyer/WITF)



(Harrisburg) -- A joint legislative session focusing on Pennsylvania's opioid crisis has been tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 28. 

Lawmakers are planning to focus on several bills already in the works, in hopes of getting them on the governor's desk before the November election.

House GOP spokesman Stephen Miskin said some new legislation could potentially be in the mix as well.

Governor Tom Wolf initially called for a special legislative session in June. But with only a handful of voting days before the election, he decided instead to opt for the joint session.

The session will primarily be an opportunity for Wolf to speak before both chambers to draw focus to the opioid issue.

At an opioid and heroin prevention rally in the Capitol, Wolf said getting legislation passed soon is key.

"After consultation and discussion with the leaders of the four caucuses, I know we can work together to make a profound and positive impact on the people of Pennsylvania by dealing with this issue before the elections," he said.

Joint sessions are rare--usually they're reserved for budget presentations and swearing-in of lawmakers.

House GOP spokesman Stephen Miskin said the last non-budget-related joint session he can recall was for former governor Tom Ridge's farewell address in 2001.

Published in State House Sound Bites

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