May. 29, 2020

HARRISBURG – State Rep. Jim Rigby (R-Johnstown ) issued the following statement in reaction to Cambria and Somerset counties being transitioned to the “green phase” on Friday, June 5, as part of the governor’s plan to reopen Pennsylvania during the COVID-19 pandemic:

“Even though I’ve been focused on the safety of my constituents and moving the 71st District and the entire state forward in the midst of this pandemic, my first thought after hearing Gov. Wolf’s announcement was, ‘Why didn’t this happen weeks ago?”

“In early April, Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 statistics peaked. I understand hindsight being 20/20 and the need at the time to ensure these statistics were in fact a high-water mark. Nevertheless, Cambria and Somerset counties’ case numbers paled in comparison to larger areas. Still, we were incorrectly grouped with that of Alleghany County and restricted from moving forward.

“The people I represent are in a delicate situation, in that we had existing financial challenges before the pandemic. The efforts I see to renew our spirit and support local small business weren’t helped by a governor who put an artificial cap on growth by not allowing business owners the choice of whether or not to open. The lack of confidence that was instilled in our citizens by not trusting them to do the right thing and adhere to CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines did nothing for our morale.

“What’s next? Only time will tell. People are no doubt excited and/or relieved that we’ve back come and reached this point. In our exuberance, we need to remember to act safely and responsibly, respect others who may not yet feel comfortable with this designation and support our friends, neighbors and local businesses as the transition continues.”

Representative Jim Rigby
71st Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Scott B. Little
717.260.6137 (office), 717.497.5967 (cell) /