We are certainly in a very different time as we confront this crisis.
The League is committed to serving our members and continuing our mission to strengthen, empower and advocate for effective local government.
The League’s Governmental Affairs’ staff has been tracking relevant legislation related to the coronavirus crisis. Please view the summaries of federal legislation, as well charts tracking state legislation, below. The charts will be updated as bills move.
- Chart of State Enacted Legislation
- Chart of State House Bills
- Chart of State Senate Bills
- Act 15 (SB 841) – Local Government Remote Voting, Approvals, and Property Tax Extensions During the COVID-19 Emergency Declaration
- Act 17 (HB 1869) – Basic Life Support Ambulance Staffing Waivers and the Heart and Lung Act
- Act 17 of 2020 Provides Sixty Days of COVID-19 Full Salary Benefits
In addition to the charts above, The League recently sent an action call regarding unemployment compensation. You can also read an article explaining this issue in greater detail, and you can view an unemployment compensation solvency fee sample letter here.
Please see the action call below.
|Unemployment Compensation Reimbursement |
Dear Municipal Members:
The League has been working for weeks to resolve an important issue concerning reimbursement to municipalities for unemployment compensation claims. We need your help.
The Issue: Payment of the annual “solvency fee” to the PA Department of Labor and Industy and acceptance of these late payments for “good cause.”
The federal CARES Act and Pennsylvania’s Act 9 of 2020 provide the opportunity for those municipal employers of reimbursable status with the Department of Labor and Industry to receive reimbursement for unemployment compensation claims related to COVID-19. Under the CARES Act, reimbursable employers can receive 50% reimbursement for their unemployment costs. Act 9 authorizes automatic payment of 100% of costs if the employer has paid the annual solvency fee to the PA Department of Labor and Industry. This fee is not required, but if paid, is typically due by the beginning of December for the following year and is calculated by multiplying .0018 times the previous year’s gross payroll.
Under the PA Unemployment Compensation Law, the Secretary of Labor and Industry can accept late payment of the solvency fee for “good cause” which is not defined in the Law. The League has been making the argument for many weeks that the current pandemic meets the “good cause” standard. We believe the Governor can direct Labor and Industry to accept late solvency fees from municipalities that wish to pay, therefore entitling them to 100% reimbursement for claims. If late solvency fees are accepted by the Department, each municipality will need to run its calculations and decide if paying the fee makes financial sense. This article provides more detail on this issue.
The Ask: It is important that you contact your House and Senate members and ask them to publically support the Governor issuing an Order that identifies the pandemic as “good cause” under the Unemployment Compensation Law and directing the PA Secretary of Labor and Industry to accept late solvency fees from those municipalities who wish to pay. The Governor needs to know that his Order will have bi-partisan support.
The Commonwealth has an obligation to remove hurdles that stand in the way of local governments receiving federal funds that are available.
Please contact your House and Senate member today!
If you have any questions regarding this Action Call, please contact the League’s Executive Director, Rick Schuettler, at firstname.lastname@example.org or the League’s Director of Governmental Affairs, Amy Sturges at email@example.com.
Thank you for your assistance with this important issue.