State Representative Jerry Knowles (R-124th) announced he is seeking re-election to the Pennsylvania State House.
"While Republican leadership ended Rendell's out-of-control spending, there is still much to be done to get our state back on track," Knowles said. "We've begun taking real steps to make Pennsylvania more attractive to small businesses and industries that create jobs, but we must do more and that's why I'm seeking re-election."
This year Gov. Corbett signed Republican legislation into law to curb lawsuit abuse, reform the unemployment compensation program, and eliminate waste, fraud and abuse from the welfare system. Equally important for taxpayers, the legislature passed the state budget on time for the first time in eight years while cutting $1 billion in spending from the year before and required all state budget and spending be easily available on the internet for review by taxpayers.
"Harrisburg is finally starting to put taxpayers and job creators first, but we are far from done," Knowles said. "As a former small business owner, I will continue to fight for taxpayers and work with our industrial community, business leaders, and local governments to recruit and retain good jobs in Berks, Carbon, and Schuylkill counties."
Knowles is also the prime sponsor of legislation (House Bill 629) that would provide property tax relief for senior citizens. The Knowles bill would allow Pennsylvania property taxpayers over the age of 65 making an annual income of less than $40,000 per year to apply for 100 percent property tax relief. Their taxes would be paid to local school districts from the Property Tax Relief Fund.
"I will continue the fight to abolish property taxes once and for all," Knowles said. "Step one is to help seniors in danger of losing their homes and that's what my legislation does - it protects seniors and begins to end property taxes for everyone."
Knowles highlighted his leadership on reform and called for continued transparency and reform to further protect taxpayers. "I have led by example on reform by refusing a taxpayer-paid car and refusing automatic per diems," he said.
"Jerry Knowles is fighting to create jobs and protect taxpayers," said Daryl Metcalfe, Chairman of the House State Government Committee. "He's stood with me in opposing illegal immigration, cutting government spending, and doing what's right for our families, seniors, and future generations. Jerry's an effective legislator and we need him in Harrisburg now more than ever."
A former small businessman and proprietor of a successful retail grocery store in Tamaqua, Knowles also served his community as a full-time police officer and local elected official.
Knowles is a 1966 graduate of Marian High School, Tamaqua, and Thaddeus Stevens Trade School, Lancaster (1969). He is a member of the South Ward Fire Co., the Knights of Columbus Council 2711, Elks Lodge 592, and the Lions Club, all of Tamaqua. Knowles was named the Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce 44th Annual Citizenship Award winner for distinguished service to his community and just last year received the 2011 Shamrock Award from the Panther Valley Irish American Association.
He was originally elected to the State House in a June 2009 special election to fill the seat vacated by Senator Dave Argall. He is married to the former Lorraine David of McAdoo for 38 years. They have two sons and a grandson.