Governor Shapiro Addresses Priorities at CCAP Conference

News Date: Thursday, March 23, 2023

Governor Shapiro
Governor Shapiro spoke on numerous legislative priorities while addressing CCAP membership during the 2023 Spring Conference.

On 9-1-1 
“County Commissioners have made clear that the proper funding for dispatch systems is a top priority when it comes to keeping people safe, and I heard you when you made those pleas. That’s why my budget increases the 9-1-1 surcharge by 35 cents, basically an inflationary index, to generate over $50 million for that system. And then, it ties the funding for that system to cost of living increases, so we’ll keep up with rising costs in the future and we’ll never have to come back to you all being in the position that you’ve been in, having to do more with less.”

On Legislative Representation
“While you’re tasked with keeping people safe, I know you’re also responsible for making sure members of your community get adequate legal representation and a fair shake in our system. But until now you haven’t gotten any help from the Commonwealth to do just that. In fact, the Commonwealth is one of only two states in the nation that provides zero state support for indigent defense. That has resulted in wide disparities in the quality of representation, simply because of where someone lives. That is wrong, and that should no longer be tolerated.”

On Mental Health Funding
“For too long, mental health has been an afterthought when it comes to funding and priorities in Harrisburg. No longer will that be the case. My budget will finally restore full state funding for county mental health services to ensure you have the resources necessary to help the people in your communities. We have to fully equip our counties to make sure we have a comprehensive strategy to put mental health front and center in Pennsylvania.”

On Broadband
“We know that we need high-speed, affordable internet throughout all 67 counties and that simply is not available for a good chunk of our population. More than 25 percent of our population here in Pennsylvania do not have access to high-speed, affordable internet. How can we expect a child to succeed in school without high-speed, affordable internet? How can we expect that small business to plant a flag and say, ‘this is where we are going to hire employees and make our product and sell our widgets’? We can’t do that unless we have access to high-speed, affordable internet. That’s going to require state resources and federal resources.”

On Pre-canvassing
“Republican and Democratic County Commissioners alike have asked for that (pre-canvassing) and I intend to work with lawmakers of both parties to get that done for you and make sure you have the tools necessary to be able to pre-canvass and continue to have free and fair, safe and secure elections where the count gets done maybe a little sooner.”

See more of the Governor's address here