Jul. 22, 2020

HARRISBURG – Gov. Tom Wolf plans to veto a transparency bill that received unanimous support in the Legislature, continuing his attempts to quash the right of the public and press to question state government officials. In response, local House Republicans from York and Adams counties, which include Reps. Seth Grove (R-Dover), who authored House Bill 2463; Kate Klunk (R-Hanover); Dawn Keefer (R-Dillsburg); Dan Moul (R-Gettysburg); Torren Ecker (R-Abbottstown); Mike Jones (R-York Township) and House Appropriations Chairman Rep. Stan Saylor (R-Red Lion) issued the following statement:

“Since taking office in 2015, Gov. Tom Wolf has worked to shut down transparency in Pennsylvania. Within two days of taking office, he fired the head of the Office of Open Records, even though he did not have the authority to do so, leading to a taxpayer-funded court battle to have the director reinstated.

“Earlier this year, Wolf held press conferences behind closed doors, preventing the media from openly questioning the man who was making all the decisions about the state’s response to COVID-19. At the same time, he directed state agencies not to answer Right-to-Know (RTK) requests, preventing the public and the press from obtaining information they have a right to access. This was all done while Wolf claimed to be transparent and attempted to champion his openness.

“Actions speak louder than words and Wolf’s actions show he may talk the transparency talk, but he certainly does not walk the transparency walk. Most recently, he said he will veto House Bill 2463 to require state agencies to answer the public’s questions submitted through RTK requests during emergencies. In his attempt to justify why he plans to veto the legislation, his administration has outright lied about what the bill does. The legislation does not alter the current RTK law, it merely requires state agencies to answer the requests.

“We are calling of Wolf to sign House Bill 2463. If he truly wants a government that works, then he should sign the legislation to ensure one of its key components – the ability of the public to raise important questions – is not infringed upon even during emergency declarations.”

York and Adams Counties Republican Delegation
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Greg Gross