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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: January 6, 2017 04:04 PM
From: Senator Lisa Baker
To: All Senate members
Subject: Cash Gift Ban
In the wake of revelations and allegations about the conduct of public officials in Pennsylvania which continue to weaken public confidence in the General Assembly, a significant step of amending the Ethical Conduct Rules of the Senate to prohibit cash gifts to Senators and Senate staff from lobbyists, principals, and others who seek to influence the legislative process has been adopted.

Having the cash gift ban incorporated into the Ethical Conduct Rules of the Senate is an important first step, but we should continue pursuing a state law.

Please join me in co-sponsoring legislation to ban legislators, other public officials and public employees from accepting cash gifts from lobbyists, principals, consultants, and others who seek to influence the legislative process. “Cash gifts” will be defined to include U. S. and foreign currency, money orders, checks, gift cards and gift certificates, and prepaid debit and credit cards.

The ban will not apply to a gift from a parent, spouse, child, or other close relative when the circumstances make it clear that the motivation for the gift is a personal or family relationship.

This is a reintroduction of Senate Bill 265 from last session, which was co-sponsored by Senators Vogel, Greenleaf, Yudichak, Fontana, Brewster, Blake, Vulakovich, Ward, Gordner, Alloway, Rafferty, Aument, Stefano, Schwank, Costa, Hughes, White, McGarrigle and Bartolotta.

Thank you for your consideration.

Introduced as SB388