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Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro has signed and implemented various executive orders since he took office in January 2023. These executive orders relate to diversity, equity, and inclusion, economic growth, education, establishing standard response times for applications, infrastructure, and technology. Governor Shapiro has reestablished five Governor’s Advisory Commissions, established the Pennsylvania Office of Transformation and Opportunity, eliminated the four-year college requirement for most state government jobs, improved the state’s licensing, permitting, and certification processes, created the Commonwealth Workforce Transformation Program, and established the Commonwealth Office of Digital Experience.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

On June 6, 2023, Governor Shapiro signed executive orders reestablishing five Governor’s Advisory Commissions – including the Commissions on African American Affairs, Asian American and Pacific Islander Affairs, Latino Affairs, LGBTQ Affairs, and Women – and established a new Commission on Next Generation Engagement. The Governor’s Advisory Commissions recommend policies and legislation that impact Pennsylvanians and help ensure the communities they represent have a voice in state government. These advisory commissions will ensure all Pennsylvania communities, regardless of appearance, origin, sexual orientation, and religion, have a role in the Administration.

Economic Growth

On January 24, 2023, Governor Shapiro signed an executive order establishing the Pennsylvania Office of Transformation and Opportunity within the Governor’s Office and the Economic Development Strategy Group. This office will be a one-stop-shop for businesses looking to grow and will work to reignite the economy by fostering innovation, supporting transformational economic development, and creating real opportunities for businesses and workers in Pennsylvania.


On January 18, 2023, Governor Shapiro signed an executive order eliminating the four-year college degree requirement for most state government positions. This allows job seekers to vouch for their skills and work experience, making it easier for Pennsylvanians to enter the public sector. The Shapiro Administration will also launch a new website allowing applicants to easily search for open positions that make a four-year degree optional.

Establishing Standard Response Times

On January 31, 2023, Governor Shapiro signed an executive order to improve Pennsylvania’s licensing, permitting, and certification processes, beginning a comprehensive review of how long it takes agencies to process applications and how workers and businesses apply online. This will help establish a date-certain for each license, permit, or certificate by which applicants will hear back. Moreover, if applicants do not receive a response by the specified date, the agency is responsible for refunding the application fee. Agencies will have 90 days to send information to the Governor’s office, which will then review, analyze, and establish efficient application processing times for all occupational permits or licenses based on agency recommendations.


On July 31, 2023, Governor Shapiro signed an executive order creating the Commonwealth Workforce Transformation Program (CWTP). This job training program provides workforce development grants to ensure that companies, contractors, unions, and others working to build Pennsylvania’s infrastructure have the necessary skilled workforce. CWTP allows organizations carrying out infrastructure work funded by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) or the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) to receive up to $40,000 for each trained new worker. Under the CWTP, Pennsylvania will reserve at least 3% of all funding from the IIJA and IRA to fund workforce development and on-the-job training. This translates to approximately $400 million for workforce training in Pennsylvania over the next five years, supporting as many as 10,000 new jobs.


On April 25, 2023, Governor Shapiro signed an executive order establishing the Commonwealth Office of Digital Experience (CODE PA) to improve online services for Pennsylvanians by making interactions online more efficient. CODE PA will work to provide digital services that are human-centered, reliable, user-friendly, and accessible to all Pennsylvania residents. Interactions are entirely online, with the number of users increasing. For instance, in 2023, nearly half a million people filed sales tax returns using the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue’s myPATH system.

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