Two Barrar Bills Approved by House Committee
HARRISBURG – The House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, led by Majority Chairman Stephen E. Barrar (R-Chester/Delaware), today approved several bills dealing with emergency services, higher education for veterans and 9-1-1 operations, including two measures authored by Barrar.

“My legislation would amend our state 9-1-1 Emergency Telephone Law by authorizing the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) to provide county 9-1-1 centers with cost-cutting suggestions,” said Barrar. “It further requires E-911 Wireless Fund disbursements to be applied to the current year only, thus moving away from a cost carry-over system that is quickly bankrupting the fund.”

Barrar noted that legislation similar to his House Bill 583 passed the House last session with broad bipartisan support. PEMA Director Glenn Cannon spoke to the committee in support of the bill, which now heads to the House floor.

The committee also approved House Bill 179, authored by Rep. Bernie O’Neill (R-Bucks), which passed the House unanimously last session as House Bill 1344.

“House Bill 179 would require insurance companies to directly pay EMS providers, regardless of their network participation, for responses to emergency 9-1-1 calls,” said Barrar. “Currently payments are sent to the patient instead of the non-network EMS providers. If the patient does not remit the payment to the provider, it must then chase down these reimbursements at a cost. This legislation is about simply changing the payee line on the check so EMS organizations are promptly and fairly reimbursed for their services. Our volunteer ambulance companies struggle daily, and this bill will provide a more efficient model, greater adaptability, and will prevent the system from collapsing.”

Barrar has listed the enactment of House Bill 179 at the top of his policy agenda for the session.

The committee also advanced Barrar’s House Bill 472, which would allow all veterans and their dependents to attend Pennsylvania public colleges and universities.

“With everything our veterans have done for the United States, offering in-state tuition rates to them is a great way for the Commonwealth to show its appreciation,” said Barrar. “From a practical standpoint, it can often be difficult for a military family that moves every few years to establish residency for college tuition purposes. This legislation will negate that issue. Additionally, veterans are the type of people we want to attract to the state to combat the so-called brain drain.”

The committee also approved Minority Chairman Chris Sainato’s (D-Beaver/Lawrence) House Bill 500, which would include Pennsylvania Civil Air Patrol members in the Emergency Responder Death Benefit Act, and Rep. Jim Marshall’s (R-Beaver) House Bill 119, which would adopt an official EMS Memorial Flag for line-of-duty EMS personnel deaths.

More information about Barrar and his legislative priorities is available at and

Representative Stephen E. Barrar
160th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Nicole Wamsley
Share |