Scavello: Senate Passes Plan to Establish a New Funding Stream for Pediatric Cancer Research

HARRISBURG – Senator Mario Scavello (R-40) supported legislation passed by the Senate today that could raise more than $100 million in private donations over the next 10 years to support childhood cancer research.

Senate Bill 74 establishes a tax credit program for qualifying donations to a Pennsylvania pediatric cancer research hospital. The program would be capped at $10 million per year over the next 10 years.

More children die from cancer than any other disease, and currently, only four percent of National Cancer Institute research dollars are spent on pediatric cancer.  Since 1975, pediatric cancer incidence rates have increased every year.

“This is an effective way to use state tax credits to raise tens of millions of dollars for research to combat childhood cancer,” Scavello said. “Cancer is a scourge and a stubborn disease that continues to claim the lives of too many citizens. It’s especially heartbreaking when children are involved, and we should do all we can to prevent these tragedies.”

In addition to supporting pediatric cancer research, Senator Scavello was also responsible for the creation of the Spinal Cord Research Program and was a champion of funding Lyme disease prevention in annual budgets.

The Senate vote today is part of a series of actions designed to save the lives of children. Act 73 of 2018 allowed Pennsylvanians to donate $5 to the Pediatric Cancer Research Fund when electronically renewing a driver’s license, photo identification card or vehicle registration. Act 39 of 2017 created space on state tax forms for taxpayers to voluntarily designate a contribution for pediatric cancer research.

Senate Bill 74 will now go to the state House of Representatives for consideration.

 

CONTACT: Christine Zubeck czubeck@pasen.gov (717) 787-6123