Yaw announces his run for re-election
State Sen. Gene Yaw, R-Loyalsock Township, has announced his intention to seek re-election to the 23rd Senatorial District encompassing Lycoming, Bradford, Sullivan, Union, and Susquehanna counties.
“I was elected to protect and promote the interests that are important to the people of our region,” he said. “I travel to every part of my district keeping an ear to the ground and understanding the issues that matter most to residents.”
Yaw said while in office he has steadfastly fought to preserve the natural gas Impact Fee, which brings tens of millions of dollars to counties and municipalities annually.
Elected to the Senate in 2008, Yaw has sponsored bills which became part of those signed into law as the 2019 ‘Farming First Package,’ designed to ensure the state’s agriculture remains competitive and profitable.
Yaw said he has supported and advocated for legislation and funding to make schools safer.
He presently serves as chairman of the board of directors for the Center for Rural Pennsylvania, a bipartisan, bicameral legislative agency that serves as a resource for rural policy within the General Assembly. Through the Center for Rural Pennsylvania, Senator Yaw has worked with Democrats to combat the state’s heroin and opioid epidemic by being at the forefront of the prescription drug monitoring program, limiting opioid prescriptions to minors, targeting drug dealers, supporting medication assisted treatment and improving access to health services to save lives.
Yaw led the request to solicit the attorney general’s help in dealing with post-production costs across leased property in the Northern Tier. He was also the prime sponsor of the PIPE Program, which is designed to increase the availability and accessibility of locally produced natural gas to area businesses, public buildings, hospitals and residences.
Yaw has authored several bills in the state Legislature to ensure clean water in streams and waterways.
Among his priorities in coming years are addressing the severance tax issue and the Regional Green Gas Initiative as it relates to waste-coal cleanup.
He also hopes to tackle the cleanup and maintenance of streams, especially in the 23rd District, as well as his bills addressing fertilizer and water quality and nutrient procurement.
He sits on a number of boards and commissions, including as chairman of the Chesapeake Bay Commission, a tri-state legislative body that advises the legislative branch of state government to identify critical environmental needs, evaluate public concerns, and ensure actions to sustain the living resources of the Chesapeake Bay.
He serves as chairman of the Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, vice-chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Infrastructure and Government Operations. He is also a member of the Judiciary, Law and Justice, Agriculture and Rural Affairs, Banking and Insurance, and the Senate Majority Policy Committee.
He is a member of the Joint Legislative Air and Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee, a member of the Environmental Quality Board, a member of the Pennsylvania Aggregate Advisory Board and a member of the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority.
Yaw has secured state funding for local projects and initiatives within the 23rd District that include downtown and streetscape improvements, parks and recreation, sewer and water, transportation infrastructure, healthcare and senior housing. He has also supported the appointments of local residents to state boards and commissions, including the Pennsylvania Game Commission, the Fish and Boat Commission, the Milk Marketing Board, Bloomsburg University, Lock Haven University, and Mansfield University.
In 2015, Yaw was named “Legislator of the Year” by the Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health for his work to address the growing heroin epidemic plaguing the state.
Yaw is also the recipient of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Award for his voting record in support of small businesses in the state.
In recent years, he has been the recipient of the Distinguished Citizen of the Year Award from the Susquehanna Council, Boy Scouts of America, the Lycoming College Alumni of the Year Award, the CAPPA Community Partner Award, the Central Pennsylvania State of Israel Bonds Israel Unity Award, the Pennsylvania Winery Association Industry Supporter Award, the Pennsylvania College of Technology Centennial Leadership Award, and the Pennsylvania Water Environment Association Public Official of the Year Award. He has also received recognition from Lycoming College and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation for his work to promote clean water and the hellbender as the official ‘State Amphibian,” as well as from the Bradford County Veterans Memorial Park Association for his work to ensure that the local men and women who have served in the armed forces are remembered.
Prior to running for the Senate, Yaw served as Lycoming County solicitor for 17 years and was named County Solicitor of the Year in 2004. He has also served as general counsel to the Pennsylvania College of Technology for more than 20 years and now serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of that institution.
Yaw is a graduate of Montoursville High School, attended Bucknell University, and earned degrees from Lycoming College and the American University School of Law in Washington, D.C.
Yaw is a United States Army veteran and a life member of the VFW and a life member of the NRA.
He is also a member of the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, Ducks Unlimited and the Nittany Lion Club.
A Lycoming County resident, Yaw is married to Ann S. Pepperman.
He has two children, Scott and Mackenzie, and two grandchildren, Samantha and Sydney.