FOX43 Capitol Beat: State Senator Jay Costa

Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) sat down with FOX43 Morning News anchor Matt Maisel for this week's edition of the FOX43 Capitol Beat.

The two opened their conversation by discussing sexual harassment, specifically as it currently exists in the state capitol building. This week, a number of female state representatives and state senators announced their plans to introduce legislation which would help curtail sexual harassment and assault at the Capitol. Costa said he did not believe the issue of sexual harassment at the Capitol was as severe as some would make it seem, though adding that policies need to change in order to better protect women.

Earlier this week, the state Senate approved funding for Pennsylvania's Children's Health Insurance Plan (CHIP), sending the bill to Governor Tom Wolf's desk. However, Pennsylvania, and all other states, are still waiting on Congress, which has not voted on a CHIP bill dictating how much federal money will go towards the state-administered program. Currently, CHIP covers approximately 180,000 children statewide.

Costa also shared his thoughts on another state budget season which resulted in a late-passed budget for the third consecutive year. Costa blamed the lack of an on-time budget on the legislature's inability to find compromise. Currently, the state House and Senate hold historic Republican majorities, which clashes ideologically with the commonwealth's Democratic governor.

Watch the complete, uncut interview with Senator Costa here on FOX43.com.