|Posted:||March 14, 2018 12:34 PM|
|From:||Representative Michael N. Corr|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Creation of a Select Committee to Investigate School Violence|
|Whenever tragedy strikes in this country, there is often an emotional reaction where the general public or particular groups call for immediate action, including new legislation, to prevent the particular event from recurring. In response to this outcry, state legislatures and Congress occasionally enact remedial measures in the form of additional appropriations or substantive laws. On other occasions, legislative bodies conclude, after careful deliberation, that government action is unwarranted and may even be counterproductive.
The recent murders in Parkland, Florida are part of a disturbing series of horrific crimes against children, teachers, and administrators that leave no doubt that government action is required. Names such as Columbine and Sandy Hook are all too familiar to each of us and there have been many more school shootings over the past few decades. Pennsylvania is not immune from such violence with several school shootings having occurred here, most notably at an Amish school in Lancaster County in 2006. Each of these events have common facts that raise questions about numerous matters including the availability of and access to firearms, mental health treatment, school security, and law enforcement resources.
In the immediate aftermath of the latest tragedy several co-sponsorship memoranda for proposed legislation have been circulated with undoubtedly more to come. While these efforts are laudable, a piecemeal approach may be inadequate to the task without first attempting to identify all potential issues. Furthermore, various proposals will likely run through different standing committees on different timelines.
I believe a more comprehensive and coordinated approach is required. To that end I am proposing a resolution for the creation of a Select Committee with the mandate of identifying and investigating issues related to these school shootings and making recommendations in a formal report to mitigate the risk of this happening again in Pennsylvania. From this report an appropriate legislative solution can emerge.
There are no more important responsibilities of government than protecting the lives and liberty of the people. I believe that fulfilling these responsibilities can be accomplished through careful examination of the myriad issues surrounding these tragic events.
Please join me in co-sponsoring this House Resolution.
Introduced as HR784