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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: March 13, 2017 03:26 PM
From: Representative Dom Costa
To: All House members
Subject: Training for Appointed Members of Boards, Commission, Authorities and Agencies
In the near future, I intend to reintroduce House Bill 2193, which aims to better train individuals appointed to boards, commissions, authorities or agencies of the Commonwealth on open records, open meetings and the fiduciary responsibilities associated with their post.

Pennsylvania has hundreds of entities that advise or oversee everything from agricultural land condemnation to workers’ compensation appeals to uniform construction code review. These governing boards rely on citizens willing to be appointed – typically for little or no compensation – and make decisions that touch nearly all aspects of everyday life. While the Administrative Code gives the governor the power to appoint the members of these boards and commissions, there is nothing requiring basic training on how to be an effective board member.

My legislation addresses this problem by requiring the Office of Open Records to provide training on the Right-to-Know Law and the Sunshine Act. It would also require the State Ethics Commission to provide basic training on the fiduciary responsibilities of being a good board or commission member. Individuals appointed or reappointed on or after the effective date would have 90 days to complete the training while those appointed before the effective date would have 120 days to complete the training.

Given the important nature of the work done by our statewide boards, commissions, authorities and other entities, it is essential that individuals are prepared to do the job. Please join me in co-sponsoring this legislation.