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The administration of Gov. Tom Wolf is more “agenda driven” than “science driven” in keeping much of Pennsylvania shut down to the detriment of thousands of workers and businesses, says state Rep. Frank Ryan.
“Decisions made by the executive branch have literally shut down the entire state economy. In restricting operations in many businesses — such as real estate, construction and garden centers — Pennsylvania stands virtually alone among the states coming to grips with this crisis,” said Ryan, who is seeking reelection of the 101st Legislative District.
“The administration speaks of being science-based when in reality it has been non-transparent, inconsistent and, in the case of senior care, negligent in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis. In this case, science-based really means agenda-driven science, which ALWAYS leads to horrible consequences.”
Rep. Ryan noted that he was among county leaders who had signed a letter supporting the phased opening of Lebanon County — a move backed by the refusal of District Attorney Pier Hess Graf to prosecute businesses reopening contrary to the Wolf shutdown.
Rep. Ryan says he favors returning the state to normalcy on a regional rather than a county basis because there are often large differences in the state of the disease’s spread within a county. More densely populated City of Lebanon, for example, should not be treated the same as rural parts of the county, he said.
Despite assurances from the Pennsylvania secretary of health that such an approach would be considered, the department of health has adhered to county-based evaluations.
“The health department appears to be narrowly focused on the effects of the disease with little or no concern about the physical, emotional and economic damage being wrought by this prolonged shutdown,” said Rep. Ryan. “Meanwhile, the lives of our citizens hang in the balance.”
Rep. Ryan’s television interview with ABC27 linked here explains his position clearly. In it, the secretary of health seems open to an approach different than the current one.
“Whatever the objective of the administration’s agenda, it certainly is not the overall well-being of Pennsylvanians,” said Rep. Ryan, who is completing his second two-year term in the state House.
The 101st district includes the city of Lebanon; the boroughs of Cornwall, Mount Gretna and Palmyra; and the townships of North Cornwall, West Cornwall, North Londonderry, South Londonderry and South Annville.