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Jay Costa

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Jay Costa
Pennsylvania State Senate District 43
In office
Term ends
December 1, 2016
Years in position 17
Minority Floor Leader, Pennsylvania Senate
Base salary$84,012/year
Per diem$157/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First elected1996
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Term limitsN/A
Bachelor'sIndiana University of Pennsylvania, 1979
Associate'sCommunity College of Allegheny County, 1977
J.D.Duquesne University School of Law, 1989
BirthdayNovember 17, 1957
Place of birthPittsburgh, PA
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Jay Costa (b. November 17, 1957) is a Democratic member of the Pennsylvania State Senate, representing District 43. He was first elected to the chamber in 1996. He currently serves as State Senate Minority Floor Leader.

Costa worked in county government as the Register of Wills of Allegheny County from 1992 to 1996.


Costa earned his A.A. degree from the Community College of Allegheny County in 1977, his bachelor's degree from Indiana-Pennsylvania in 1979 and his J.D. from Duquesne University School of Law in 1989. His professional experience includes being a former Attorney and Deputy Sheriff for Allegheny County.

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Costa served on the following committees:

Pennsylvania Committee Assignments, 2013
Appropriations, Ex officio
Rules & Executive Nominations, Minority Chair
Joint State Government Commission


In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Costa served on these committees:


In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Costa served on these committees:


Pension costs

In January 2014, Costa said that Pennsylvania Senate Democrats were skeptical of making changes to the state's retirement plans for future hires. He also said that any proposed changes for current workers and retirees "would be a deal-breaker." Costa stated that he was skeptical that pension costs would reduce other expenditures of the state budget. State Senate Democrats supported measures to increase state revenue through closing tax loopholes, adding taxes to gas drilling companies, and accepting federal dollars from the expansion of Medicaid.[1]



See also: Pennsylvania State Senate elections, 2012

Costa ran in the 2012 election for Pennsylvania Senate District 43. Costa ran unchallenged in the April 24 primary and was unchallenged in the general election, which took place on November 6, 2012.[2][3]

Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJay Costa Incumbent 100% 94,779
Total Votes 94,779


See also: Pennsylvania State Senate elections, 2008

On November 4, 2008, Costa was re-elected to District 43 of the Pennsylvania State Senate.[4]

Costa raised $335,357 for this campaign in which he ran unopposed.[5]

Pennsylvania State Senate District 43
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png COSTA, JAY JR. (D) 101,482

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Jay Costa is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Jay Costa raised a total of $2,694,957 during that time period. This information was last updated on September 9, 2013.[6]

Jay Costa's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Won $1,376,388
2010 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Not up for election $537,579
2008 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Won $335,357
2006 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Not up for election $99,940
2004 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Won $130,714
2002 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Not up for election $97,150
2000 Pennsylvania State Senate, District 43 Won $117,829
Grand Total Raised $2,694,957


Jay Costa won re-election to the Pennsylvania State Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Jay Costa raised a total of $1,376,388.
Pennsylvania State Senate 2012 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Jay Costa's campaign in 2012
Pennsylvania State Education Association$57,500
Pennsylvania Association for Justice$57,000
Western Pennsylvania Laborers$49,000
Operating Engineers Local 66$33,000
Greater Pennsylvania Regional Council of Carpenters$30,700
Total Raised in 2012$1,376,388
Source:Follow the Money


Costa raised $335,357 during the 2008 election cycle.

His top contributors are listed below.[7]

Donor Amount
Pennsylvania Association for Justice $30,000
Pennsylvania State Education Association $20,750
Jewish Community PAC of Pittsburgh $20,000
Richard Simmons $8,500
Unison Health Plan $7,750
Robert Lewis $6,500
David Sunstein $6,000
Pennsylvania Bankers Association $5,000
Douglas Campbell $4,250
Western Pennsylvania Regional Council of Carpenters $4,250
L & M Associates $4,250


Costa and his wife, Roxanne, have three children. They reside in Forest Hills, Pennsylvania.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Pennsylvania State Senate District 43
Succeeded by