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House Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: December 22, 2014 11:47 AM
From: Representative Jake Wheatley, Jr.
To: All House members
Subject: Drug Screening for Certain Candidates (former HB 1934)
In the near future, I will be re-introducing legislation – former House Bill 1934 – amending the Pennsylvania Election Code to require candidates for certain offices to submit to drug testing.

As you know, the Pennsylvania Election Code currently requires candidates for state and local public offices to submit nominating petitions to the Secretary of the Commonwealth and local county election boards, respectively. My proposal would require candidates for any state office, municipal office, school board, or party office to submit to drug testing, at their own expense, no later than ten days before submitting a nominating petition. At the time of filing, such candidates for office must submit the drug screening results and a drug screening certificate of compliance with their nominating petitions in order for them to be eligible to be placed on the election ballot.

You may be wondering why I would introduce such a proposal. In the past, bills have been introduced that would require recipients of public assistance to submit to drug screening in order to be eligible to receive public assistance. Legislation has also been proposed that would have required constables, deputy constables, and public and private school employees to submit to pre-employment drug screening. It is my opinion that if this body is to consider subjecting others to drug screening requirements, then we should hold ourselves to the same standard.

Public officials at all levels are asked to uphold the trust placed in them by their constituents. In order to preserve that public trust and to truly serve the best interests of our constituents, we must hold ourselves to the same standards, including drug screening or other requirements, we set for our constituents as a condition of public employment or public assistance. As such, it is only fair that candidates for state and local office submit to drug screening prior to holding office.

Please join me in sponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as HB84