Committee Approves Ward’s Bill to Help Community-Based Volunteer Organizations Fighting Cancer

HARRISBURG – The Senate Law and Justice Committee approved a bill today that would aid local organizations dedicated to fighting cancer, according to the bill’s sponsor, Senator Judy Ward (R-30).

Under current law, many community-based organizations and non-profits are eligible to apply to the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board for a wine and spirits auction permit for special events of up to four days with a payment of $30 per day.

Senate Bill 61 would expand this list of eligible organizations to include any non-profit organization which has been in existence for at least five years, is registered with the PA Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations, and is also recognized as a community-based voluntary organization committed to fighting cancer.

A number of types of organizations are already covered by the law, including groups that provide hospice care, service dogs for individuals with disabilities, emergency response, museum support, higher education, non-profit hospital services and many other volunteer and non-profit community groups. Nationally recognized cancer-fighting groups, such as the American Cancer Society, are also eligible under current law, but many local groups are not.

Ward noted that she was inspired to introduce the bill by a local organization from Blair County that helps battle breast cancer by raising money for mammograms and local hospitals.

“The support provided by local groups can have an enormous impact on the lives of patients. We need to assist these smaller groups who can make the biggest difference for individual cancer patients,” Ward said. “Passing this bill will benefit all parties involved in the fight against cancer, including local charities, individuals suffering from this disease, and their families and loved ones.”

Following committee approval today, Senate Bill 61 was sent to the full Senate for consideration.

CONTACT:  Cheryl Schriner (717) 787-5490

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