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Speaker Sam Smithís Bills to Downsize the Legislature Pass House

December 18, 2013- Mike Davies
HARRISBURG- Two bills to amend the state constitution to downsize the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and the Senate have been approved by the state House in Harrisburg.
House Bill 1234, authored by Speaker of the House Sam Smith (R-Jefferson/Armstrong/Indiana), would reduce the House of Representatives to 153 members from 203 and companion legislation would reduce the Senate to 38 members from its current 50. Speaker Smith said he introduced the bills because he feels a smaller legislature means state government will be more productive and receptive to the needs of the citizens.

(Smith cut :18) ďItís the first step of a constitutional amendment that would reduce the size of the House and the Senate, two separate bills, and itís been my belief and certainly an overwhelming majority agreed that a smaller legislature I think will allow us to just be more responsive to the needs, to the diverse nature of Pennsylvania and produce a better product at the end of the day.Ē          

The constitutional amendment process requires the bills to be debated and passed in two consecutive sessions of the General Assembly and approved in a referendum vote by the people of Pennsylvania. The bills now move to the Senate for consideration.

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