Monthly Archives: April 2016


Petition – Constitutional Amendment To the Pennsylvania Constitution Regarding Section 8

 It is up to the citizens to impress on the legislature their will to see the issue resolved.  Look in the right hand column at the top and click to sign the petition.  When you do, it will be emailed to all York County elected legislators and the leadership of the Pennsylvania State House and Senate.

PA-Pension-Spike

Call For Constitutional Amendment To the Pennsylvania Constitution

 

It is clear the Pensylvania Legislature will not reform pensions and their own benfits without the intervention of citizens.  They have repeatedly failed to enact reforms to try to reforn an unsustainable pension system that is driving us deeper and deeper into bankruptcy.  Unless we, as taxpayers acto counter the overwhelming influence of uion campaign donations, nothing will change.  We owe it to our children and grandchildren to mobilize and force the necessary changes to the system to begin to right the ship of state that is sinking quickly under a mountain of debt.

 

Article 2, Section 8 of the Pennsylvania Constitution passed in 1874 says this:

“Compensation”

The members of the General Assembly shall receive such salary and per diem for regular and special sessions as shall be fixed by law, and no other compensation whatsoever, whether for service upon committee or otherwise. No member of either House shall during the term for which he may have been elected, receive any increase of salary, or mileage, under any law passed during such term.”

In 1874 there was no health insurance, there were no pensions.  It is clear the framers of that constitution intended only that the legislature should draw only salary and mileage as their compensation.  Of course, as legislatures who see ambiguity in their governance are wont to do, they have of course amended this on their own via statute.  They have in the process created a huge conflict of interest when it comes to the issues of compensation and benefits not only for the legislature but for the state government as well.  They can no longer sit as the objective representatives of the taxpayers interest.  Theirs come first and the main constituent of their power base, state employees come second.  That is why Pennsylvania is bankrupt today.  This conflict of interest led them to a huge increase in salary and benefits to themselves and the state employees in 2000 that has led us to the point where we are over $53 Billion dollars in debt…just on unfunded pension obligations.  The entire pension structure is clearly unsustainable, yet, the legislature refuses to act.

Pennsylvania also has the largest and most expensive legislature in the nation. They meet throughout the year (the only legislature that does so).  Four states meet only bi-annually, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota and Texas, many would argue these states are bastions of personal liberty and economic vibrancy while Pennsylvania has a sluggish economy, a confiscatory property tax system and declining populations.  We can never fix what issues we have to face without changing the dynamic of having a legislature that has forgotten its limitations and to whom it owes its fealty.  Therefore, The York 912 Patriots are putting forth the following petition for all Pennsylvanian’s to express their wishes.

 

Petition – For a Constitutional Amendment to the Pennsylvania Constitution

 

Wherefore the Legislature of the State of Pennsylvania has transgressed the authority granted it under Article 2, Section 8 of the Constitution of 1864.

Whereas, the citizens of Pennsylvania are entitled to first loyalty by their elected officials.

Whereas, the Legislature of Pennsylvania has brought financial danger and ruin by seeking to increase the wealth of its members by its own votes to the detriment of all Pennsylvania citizens.

The citizens do hereby demand the legislature either place on the ballot for the people to decide, an amendment to the Pennsylvania Constitution:

Article 2 Section 8 is amended as follows:

“Compensation

The members of the General Assembly shall receive only such salary as is authorized by law as exists at the time of their election, and fixed per diem expenses for regular and special sessions as amounting to the amount of $200.00 per day for all districts located more than 60 miles by direct line from the capital to their nearest border, limited to the maximum of $ 30,000.00 per fiscal year.  In the event that no budget shall be passed by the legislature and allowed to become law by the Governor prior to August 1st , the salaries and all other  reimbursement of legislators, the Governor and all appointed Cabinet Officers  and Department Officers shall be suspended until the budget shall be passed and become effective in law.   No legislator will receive any increase to his pay and benefits throughout his elected career, save the usual adjustments to Health benefits during their term.

From this date forward, no elected member of the Legislature, the Governor and any Cabinet member shall be entitled to any form of pension benefit or retirement compensation tied to their service as an elected official, nor shall they be entitled to any benefits of health, death or accidental death insurance for any period other than the period during which they are sworn as official elected representatives of the State of Pennsylvania. No elected official may receive an increase in pay or reimbursement during any uninterrupted term of their service, extending to subsequent reelections.”

 It is up to the citizens to impress on the legislature their will to see the issue resolved.  Look in the right hand column at the top and click to sign the petition.  When you do, it will be emailed to all York County elected legislators and the leadership of the Pennsylvania State House and Senate.