HARRISBURG – Legislation by State Senator Doug Mastriano (R-33) that would protect monuments from vandalism was recently assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Senate Bill 1321 aims to strengthen existing state code, as well as implement new deterrents. As part of the bill, the grading and severity of an offense would be based on the cost of the damage. The grading is comparable to Pennsylvania retail theft charges.
Mastriano noted that the measure correlates the costs to fix or replace a monument with the grading of the charge, as well as the fines and period of incarceration.
“Unfortunately, without effective state-level legislation in place to discourage monument vandalism, this type of action has been occurring across our nation,” said Mastriano. “This type of behavior in a free society demands repercussions.”
Mastriano partnered with Senators Dave Arnold (R-48), Judy Ward R-(30) and Dave Argall (R-29) in developing the measure.
As part of the legislation, the State Attorney General would prioritize the prosecution of any matters related to the vandalism of monuments in Pennsylvania.
The federal administration recently issued an executive order concerning historic monuments.