John Lawrence was elected to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in 2010 to serve the people of the 13th Legislative District. A lifelong resident of southern Chester County, John is committed to bringing a common sense, reform-minded approach towards governing. The son of a small businessman and grandson of a dairy farmer, John grew up with a firsthand view of the challenges faced by the owners of local, family-run businesses.
John has been outspoken about the need for government reform. He has authored legislation combining redundant government services, eliminating government waste, and requiring legislators to submit for drug testing. Leading by example, John declines a state pension, state car, per diems, and other “perks” awarded to legislators.
A strong voice for fiscal responsibility, John chaired the Speaker’s Debt Commission to review outstanding Commonwealth debt with an eye toward reforming Pennsylvania’s bond issuance procedures and reducing overall state liabilities. House Bill 83 of 2018 proposed key reforms to change how Pennsylvania issues debt, paying down the principal faster and saving taxpayer dollars by significantly reducing the amount spent on interest. Despite near-unanimous bipartisan support in the House and Senate, Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed this legislation. John has also drafted legislation increasing oversight of “lease-backed” debt, a practice by which over $700 million in state-backed debt has been issued without approval of the General Assembly.
After learning that longstanding Pennsylvania law compelled victims of domestic violence to pay alimony pendente lite to their abusive spouse during divorce proceedings, John authored Act 102 of 2018. Enacted with broad bipartisan support, this critical legislation eliminated the possibility of domestic violence victims being required to financially support their convicted abuser, a situation that previously occurred regularly in courtrooms across the state. John’s legislation put an end to this unbelievable and cruel practice.