To be fair, both the House and Senate have passed versions of so-called "distracted-driving" bills.
Now the House is considering two measures: one to ban texting while driving, and one that would bar drivers under 18 from using any cell-phone device and ban talking on hand-held phones for all other drivers.
A spokesman for House Majority Leader Mike Turzai (R., Allegheny) says he expects the chamber will pass the texting-ban bill, sponsored by Sen. Robert Tomlinson (R., Bucks) as early as this week and send it back to the Senate for final passage.
"Our goal is to get it back to the Senate and to the governor's desk," said Steve Miskin.
A second bill, sponsored by Rep. William Kortz (D., Allegheny), that would ban all handheld cell-phone use was slated for a vote on Tuesday, but on Monday Miskin said it would be delayed.
The House and Senate have been at loggerheads for six years over how to craft distracted-driver legislation that would be acceptable to a majority of members.
At issue has been whether to list driving offenses as primary or secondary offenses and whether to combine texting and talking on cell phones or address them in separate bills.
While the Pennsylvania legislature has struggled to reach agreement, 34 states and the District of Columbia prohibit drivers from texting behind the wheel, and at least eight states have passed laws barring drivers from talking on handheld cell phones. New Jersey bars both.
As the distracted-driving debate drags on in the Pennsylvania General Assembly, at least one driver-safety bill will become law.
Gov. Corbett was scheduled to sign on Tuesday legislation that would increase training for young drivers and limit the number of passengers they can carry.
The new law would limit teen drivers to one passenger - immediate family excepted - for the first six months after they received a junior license and expand behind-the-wheel training from 50 hours to 65.
While the number of fatalities nationally linked to distracted driving has fallen by 6 percent (from 5,838 in 2008 to 5,474 in 2009), a Virginia Tech study concluded that texting and driving is even more dangerous than drinking and driving.
Rep. Josh Shapiro (D., Montgomery), who has been a strong supporter of safe-driving legislation, said he would offer amendments to strengthen the Tomlinson bill, which he contends was "watered down" in the House Transportation Committee.
The Tomlinson bill originally addressed both cell-phone talking and texting, banning all cell-phone use while driving and establishing texting as a so-called primary offense, or one that would provide law enforcement grounds on which to stop a driver.
Instead, the cell-phone banning language was dropped and texting is now a secondary offense, meaning a driver would have to be cited for another driving offense first.
"You'd have to have an accident and then be cited," said Shapiro. "That's absolutely the wrong approach."
Miskin said the House would take up cell-phone talking and texting in separate legislation that would be considered on separate days.
"For years they have been trying to put this all in one bill," said Miskin. "We believe they should be separated."
As to the sudden delay of the vote on the handheld cell-phone ban, Miskin said it would be back on the calendar at a later date.
That news didn't sit well with Shapiro, who said final passage of bans on both roadway hazards was long overdue.
"My hope is that Republican leadership puts aside differences to address the needs of road safety and pass a comprehensive distracted driving bill." he said.
Contact staff writer Amy Worden at 717-783-2584 or firstname.lastname@example.org or @inkyamy on Twitter.