Pennsylvania House Vote Signals Support For Child Sex Abuse Window In Bill Form

The state House of Representatives showed solid support Tuesday for enacting a two-year lawsuit window for child victims of sexual abuse as a regular bill, two weeks after the Legislature gave its first round of approval to a similar constitutional amendment.

The 148 to 53 vote set the table for a final vote in the chamber, and if the House gives its final OK, the state Senate and governor would still need to approve it. The Republican leader’s office said the final vote could occur Wednesday.

The prime sponsor, Rep. Jim Gregory, R-Blair, noted his amendment would allow lawsuits outside the statute of limitations against both public and private entities.

“All public and private defendants are treated the same to ensure that all victims are treated equally,” Gregory said before the successful vote on his amendment.

Nearly all House Democrats voted yes, while the majority Republican caucus was closely divided.

A proposal by Rep. Brett Miller, R-Lancaster, would have delayed implementation of the bill unless and until the constitutional amendment is enacted. Miller said he wanted to “advance the issues of the people” while also defending the constitution’s legal protections for defendants.

It was defeated by a vote of 64-137.

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