Weekly Update: Creating New Jobs, Combatting the Heroin and Opioid Epidemic, and Improving Education Standards

By: The Office of Governor Tom Wolf

January 19, 2018

This week, Governor Wolf wrote a letter to President Trump asking for more federal support to combat the heroin and opioid epidemic. Since taking office, the governor has expanded access to naloxone for schools, first responders and emergency personnel, provided funding for 45 Center of Excellence, and launched a Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. Just last week, he declared this epidemic a statewide disaster emergency. This week’s letter to President Trump stresses the need for more funding to continue to combat substance abuse disorder in the commonwealth, as well as the need to work together to save lives and protect communities.

Continuing his jobs that pay initiative, the governor outlined his proposal to modernize Pennsylvania’s outdated overtime rules. The new rules will phase in over four years, and increase the salary threshold that requires employers to pay overtime to most salaried workers. When fully implemented, these modernized rules will increase the wages of half a million salaried workers in Pennsylvania.

“It’s simple, if you work overtime, then you should get paid fairly for it. This important step will put more money into the pockets of hardworking people and will help expand the middle class in Pennsylvania,” Governor Wolf said.

On Thursday, Governor Wolf announced that VF Corporation will expand into Pennsylvania, creating more than 175 new jobs in Lebanon County. Later that day, the governor also received news that Pittsburgh and Philadelphia are two of 20 cities being considered for Amazon HQ2. Amazon is expected to invest over $5 billion in construction and create as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs for the location the company chooses. The governor will continue to work with both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to demonstrate to Amazon that Pennsylvania is a tremendous place to build a business, equipped with a skilled workforce characterized by a combination of education and experience.

“It is no surprise that Pennsylvania’s two world-class cities have made the shortlist for Amazon’s HQ2,” said Governor Wolf. “Pennsylvania’s strategic location in the heart of the East Coast, nationally ranked educational institutions, and a workforce equipped to support future growth makes it prime for Amazon’s second headquarters in North America.”

Education is a key to our successful workforce, and this week Governor Wolf announced federal approval of the commonwealth’s most comprehensive federal education blueprint since 2002. Pennsylvania’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provides critical resources to schools and a flexible framework through which teachers can teach and students can learn. The governor will continue to invest in Pennsylvania’s schools so students have training to obtain good paying jobs in the commonwealth.

Governor Wolf’s Week, January 14, 2018 – January 20, 2018

Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Thursday, January 18, 2018
Friday, January 19, 2018

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