PHILADELPHIA, April 12, 2011 – State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams issued the following statement:

“This is an especially crucial week in the state Senate, as my colleagues will give final consideration to Senate Bill 1, the Opportunity Scholarship and Educational Improvement Tax Credit Act. This is one of the most significant pieces of legislation that we will address this session, perhaps in our legislative careers – and surely one of the most impactful.

“It is with deep disappointment that I will not be able to travel to Harrisburg to cast my vote in person or attend session for the next few weeks, as I am recuperating from a medically necessary procedure. The unfortunate timing of this convalescence may be necessary, but it has not tempered my passion for this issue; if anything, my enthusiasm has intensified, especially given SB1’s successful passage out of the appropriations committee. I remain passionately engaged and will cast my vote in strong support of this bill from home.

“We are so close, so close to achieving meaningful change for countless families across Pennsylvania.

“For months on the floor, in private conversation and from the steps of the Capitol, I’ve made the case as to why we can’t wait ‘another year.’ Generations of children have been forced to wait, and they have been deprived of the education they deserved, solely because their zip code or family income doomed them to a failing school in a failing system. We have the power to change that. Right now.
“Today, hundreds of voices – parents, students and other concerned Pennsylvanians – will ring throughout the capitol, pleading with their elected representatives to give them a better alternative, to let them truly choose their future. SB 1 will do that. I stand as living proof of the vast impact choice can have on a child’s life.

“In preparation for this vote, I pray my colleagues think about all of these things, but particularly about that child focusing on how to dodge violence in school instead of concentrating on a math equation, the parent working two jobs in hopes of giving that child a better life, only to see those efforts toppled by an underperforming school.

“We have heard from the voices that matter. Let’s put their issues first. Let’s vote for SB1.”

CONTACT: Mike Nixon
267.248.9100 ( tel:267.248.9100 )