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Governor’s prolonged shutdown devastated Pennsylvania employees

By PA Senate

Jul 15, 2020

HARRISBURG – The Senate Majority Policy Committee, chaired by Senator David G. Argall (R-Schuylkill/Berks) released a report that highlights a series of committee meetings held with regional employers, employees, health officials, chambers of commerce, and other concerned groups that were affected by Governor Wolf’s executive order to shut down businesses.  

“What we have experienced in Pennsylvania over the past five months is nothing short of a roller-coaster economy,” said Senator Argall. “The Governor’s unilateral actions have taken both a mental and economic toll on our citizens. We went from a period of record-low unemployment to a period of high unemployment. Some employers needed to make the heart-breaking decision to close their businesses forever while those employers that were lucky enough to weather the storm are no longer focusing on making a profit- they’re focusing on surviving. Employees that were forced to stay home turned to a broken unemployment system administered by the Department of Labor and Industry.”

The Senate Majority Policy Committee held four separate workshop discussions on the regional economies of Pennsylvania:

  • Tuesday, March 26 – the safe rebuilding of western PA’s economy
  • Tuesday, June 16 – the economy of northeastern PA’s economy and COVID-19
  • Wednesday, June 25 – the economy of southeastern PA’s economy and COVID-19
  • Tuesday, June 30 – the economy of southcentral PA’s economy and COVID-19

“The series of workshops told us one thing,” Senator Argall continued.  “All of us, the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the Governor, need to work together and develop real plans to safely rebuild our economy while ensuring the health and safety of our citizens. These two goals should never have been mutually exclusive, and no one should have to choose to either potentially sacrifice their health or their livelihood.”

The workshops were requested by Senator Camera Bartolotta (R-Beaver/Greene/Washington), Senator Bob Mensch (R-Berks/Bucks/Montgomery), and Senator Scott Martin (R-Lancaster). Recommendations for panelists also came from the senators that represent those respective regions of the Commonwealth.

More information including videos of the workshops and a copy of the report can be found on the committee’s website at

Regional Report of PA Economies and Covid-19

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