The Grange is a place for people of all ages to connect with others and with their community. We offer programs to develop leadership skills, build character and provide service to your community. In the spirit of friendship, Grangers accomplish great things while having a great time. Our gatherings are designed to be enjoyable for the WHOLE family.
2017 PA State Grange Royalty
The 2017-18 Pennsylvania State Junior Grange Princess and Prince, Autumn Tworkoski and Tanner Davis; 2017-18 Outstanding Young Patrons Andrew Kieffer, and Denae Zvarick; 2017-18 Pennsylvania State Grange Youth Ambassadors, Grace Wadsworth and Jacob Mengel .
National Convention Day 5 Newsletter
National Convention Day 4 Newsletter
National Convention Day 3 Newsletter
National Convention Day 2 Newsletter
National Convention Day 1 Newsletter
Make sure to read the National Convention Newsletter to stay on top of the latest news!
NO LACK FOR VARIETY IN HARRISBURG RIGHT NOW Vince Phillips, PA State Grange Legislative Director
Budget Fight Continues and Continues and Continues…
It may be Indian Summer elsewhere in the Commonwealth but in Harrisburg, it might as well still be last summer since legislators continue to wrestle with the State Budget. As most know, the legislature passed a spending bill in early July, and then, the harder task began of how to fund the State Budget. Since then, it has been a series of back and forth with the Senate pushing for a tax on Marcellus Shale natural gas extraction and the House trying to pull money from numbers of dedicated funds such as one explicitly directed to help Conservation Districts do their work.
The dust is beginning to clear and there may very well be a final budget by the time you read this issue of Lancaster Farming. Predictions are dangerous but it is likely to include monies from some dedicated funds, borrowing $1.2 billion ahead from Tobacco Settlement money paid to the state each year, and taking $200 million in reserves from an insurance company of last resort for doctors who cannot get standard medical malpractice insurance coverage. This is called the Joint Underwriting Association (JUA).
Lawsuits may still complicate the finale. JUA says it will sue because (it says) it is illegal for state government to seize money from a private sector insurance company. The legislative language says that JUA will be abolished by the state if it does not relinquish its reserve money that the state wants. Meanwhile, a lawsuit was filed attacking Governor Wolf’s intention of borrowing against future profits from the PA Liquor Control Board. So far, there is no lawsuit against Wolf for wanting to take out an equity loan for the Farm Show Complex -- On October 13, the Governor put out a request for bids to those who might want to give PA a loan against its Farm Show Complex property. NOTE: PA State Grange is strongly opposed to taking out an equity loan on the Farm Show Complex.
But, that’s not all that is going on in Harrisburg.
Senate Prescription Price hearing Gets Feisty
On October 24, the PA State Grange testified at a hearing of the Senate Banking & Insurance Committee on the issue of drug price transparency. At issue was Senate Bill 673 sponsored by Senator Don White (R-Indiana). It would force drug manufacturers to provide information on the costs of making drugs, money spend in research versus marketing, and profits. The drug companies’ lobbyist said that SB 673 would not help consumers directly. Part of the Grange testimony rebutted this, saying that drug cost and price transparency will help consumers because regulators would know better when price-gouging occurs and insurance companies would be in a better position to negotiate lower prices from the drug manufacturers if information can be compared with what drug companies are charging elsewhere. The example used was if Epi-pens are found to cost $150.00 in California and Pennsylvania’s price is $600.00, then insurance companies can raise a red flag.
Despite strong questioning from the committee’s Minority Chair Senator Sharif Street (D-Phila.), the pharmaceutical company witness did not provide a satisfactory answer to the Senator on why drug cost/price information should not be disclosed. What the lobbyist did say was that insurance company administrative costs should be targeted instead to reduce insurance costs rather than drug prices which he said were not increasing that much. He did acknowledge that the recent price increase for Epi-pens was the result of a bad actor, one is not a member of Pharma, the drug company membership organization. On their side, the witness from southeast PA’s Independence Blue Cross cited examples of dramatic increases in recent drug pricing from 2012 to 2016:
The bottom line to the hearing was a comment by Senator Dan Laughlin (R-Erie) who said that “consumers are being hosed” by drug companies raising their prices. NOTE: PA State Grange supports prescription cost/price transparency.
Some other happenings of interest to PA State Grange members:
News & Updates
Wayne Campbell,PA State Grange President, Harry Keith, 2017 PA State Granger of the Year, and Stephanie Tiller, National Grange Representative at 145th Annual PA State Grange Convention on Scranton.
Wayne Campbell Re-Elected as President
of the PA State Grange
Mr. Wayne Campbell, a member of Community Grange #1767 in Newport, Pa., has been re-elected as President of the Pennsylvania State Grange at the 145th Annual State Grange Convention which was held in Scranton.
Mr. Campbell has been a life-long member of the PA State Grange. He has held the offices of President/Master on both the Subordinate and Pomona Grange and currently has served on the Executive Committee of the Pomona Grange. He also has served on the State Grange Agriculture Committee for 6 years and was serving on the PA State Grange Executive Committee as Overseer prior to assuming the presidency, upon Elizabeth Downey’s resignation as president in February 2017.
Mr. Campbell shares, "I look forward to working with the members of the Pennsylvania State Grange to grow our organization and make us more visible in our communities over the next year."
Also elected by the Grange delegates at the 145th Annual PA State Grange Convention were to fulfill 2 year terms on the executive committee were: JV Lamb as Overseer/Vice President who is a member of Westfield Grange #1514 in Lawrence County and, Dr. James Diamond to the Executive Committee who is a member of Plumsteadville Grange #1738 in Bucks County.
145th Annual PA State Grange Convention
October 19 - 22, 2017
The Northeast Hosting Committee invites all Grangers to attend the 145th annual session of the Pennsylvania State Grange. Grangers will "Bring their Grange Lights to the Electric City."
2017 Convention Schedule
2017 Proposed Resolutions
President Campbell's Response to Media
on Farm Show Complex Lease
PA State Grange Resolution on PA Real ID:
REAL ID RESOLUTION
BE IT RESOLVED, The Pennsylvania State Grange urges immediate adoption by the General
Assembly of legislation bringing the Commonwealth in compliance with the Federal Real ID
requirements of personal identification required for airline travel, access to Federal facilities,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this legislation include all drivers’ licenses and other forms of
identification issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and those holders of Real
ID-compliant identification not be required to subsidize the transition from present
The delegates at the 144th Annual Session of the PA State Grange deliberated and voted on 53 resolutions during their session in Shippensburg.
Resolutions with final action