State Rep. Martin Michael Schmotzer has issued a news release to thank the residents of Pennsylvania's 22nd House District for the opportunity to serve them. Schmotzer's term in the House comes to a close today, Nov. 30.
"It's been an honor to serve and represent the people of the 22nd District," Schmotzer said in a statement released this week, "from Brookline and Beechview to Baldwin (Township) and Whitehall (Borough). I kept all my promises to you. I had a 100-percent voting record, I didn't take the health care coverage, and I showed up for work every day.
"The most important votes I cast were probably those dealing with the (state) budget," the Democrat and longtime Baldwin-Whitehall School Board member from Whitehall said. "I was adamantly opposed to locking in last year's nearly $1 billion cut to K-12 education and other unnecessary cuts made by the governor (Tom Corbett) and his party. We have a booming gas industry that can afford to pay its fair share of taxes rather than having homeowners shoulder too much of the burden through higher property taxes or children enduring more cuts to their education. And our state laws still include the Delaware loophole that lets big out-of-state companies like Wal-Mart dodge Pennsylvania taxes on the profits they make here.
"The new state budget I voted against also locks in place last year's 10-percent cut to the Community College of Allegheny County, and it cuts 10 percent from county human services such as mental health services and services for at-risk children and people with intellectual disabilities.