Local officials were sworn into the Pennsylvania 2023-34 legislative session on Tuesday.

State representatives Ryan Bizzarro, Pat Harkins and Bob Merski took the oath of office for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, according to a release.

Rep. Harkins will start his ninth term in the 1st Legislative District, while Rep. Merski will begin his third term representing the 2nd Legislative District. Both Harkins and Merski laid out their plans for the future.

“The new session brings a new chance to accomplish legislative priorities, and for me, protecting workers’ rights and safety is high on that list,” Harkins said. “In the year ahead, I will be reintroducing legislation that would require the state to provide public workers with the same safety protections already available to workers in private companies.”

“I’m excited about representing our district in the year ahead and optimistic about what we can accomplish in the new term,” Merski said. “I’m also looking forward to another year leading the Northwest Democratic Delegation as we work to build on our region’s unique strengths, including our expanding industrial base in the tech and advanced manufacturing fields. 

Rep. Bizzarro, on the other hand, will start his sixth term in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and will be his second term as part of the House Democratic Leadership team – serving as the House Democratic Policy chair.

He also commented on how ready he is to begin the new session and to be working with state Rep. Mark Rozzi, the newly elected Pennsylvania Speaker of the House.

“I’m ready to work for all Pennsylvanians,” Bizzarro said, “and I know Speaker Rozzi – we came into the House together – and I know he has pledged to do the same.”