DARBY, Aug. 13 – State Rep. Joanna McClinton, D-Phila/Delaware, will host her annual Delaware County Back to School Community Resource Fair from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 4 at the Darby Recreation Center, 1022 Ridge Ave., Darby. "I love seeing children so excited to start the school year," McClinton said. "I want to encourage that excitement with the school supplies giveaway. The kids aren’t just receiving pens or notebooks. They are being empowered to succeed in school, and when they succeed, we as a community succeed.” Local vendors will provide free haircuts and hairstyles in addition to the free school supplies. Refreshments will be available. “It is a priority that parents and students have access to the critical resources they need to thrive,” McClinton said. “My staff and I will be there to talk to residents about how to improve education in the district, as well as answer any state-related questions they may have.” McClinton said students must reside in the 191 st Legislative District , which includes parts of Philadelphia and all of Darby and part of Yeadon in Delaware County, and must be present to receive school supplies. For more information, call McClinton’s district office at 215-748-6712. Read more
NEWTOWN, Sept. 12 – The Morrisville Municipal Authority was awarded a $1 million state grant to improve its wastewater treatment plant, state Rep. Perry Warren announced today. The plant serves most of Lower Makefield Township, all of Morrisville and Yardley boroughs and parts of Falls Township. The Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program grant is the result of work among the Morrisville Authority, Warren’s office and the Wolf administration. “The plant upgrades will help protect natural resources and save ratepayer money,” said Warren, D-Bucks. “It’s a prime example of the critical role that infrastructure plays in advancing public health, and improving it will positively affect thousands of people here in our communities.” “This award reflects careful planning among the Morrisville Authority, Representative Warren and my administration to address critical infrastructure needs in Lower Makefield, Yardley and Morrisville,” Gov. Tom Wolf said. “The priority of my administration is creating stronger communities, and this project will go a long way toward improving the everyday lives of residents of these communities.” Funding will cover the design, bidding and construction of a pump station and infrastructure conveyance system, including installation of a 30-inch force main, a 42-inch gravity main and road restoration. Warren toured the facility in May with Superintendent Richard Dulay, Read more
State Rep. Carol Hill-Evans, D-York, today announced a $3 million state grant that will support the Primary Crusher Replacement Project in York County from the state Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program. Read more
PITTSBURGH, Sept. 12 – State Rep. Jake Wheatley, D-Allegheny, will be joined by elected officials and advocates in the fight for criminal justice reform and to legalize cannabis during a rally from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 21 at the Pittsburgh City-County Building, 414 Grant St. Wheatley plans to soon introduce legislation that would legalize cannabis for adult recreational use in the commonwealth. If his measure is passed, it would also call for the immediate expungement of all criminal records for any cannabis-related conviction that would then be considered lawful under this legislation. “I’ve long advocated for the legalization of cannabis because it would help the state in many ways including fiscally, along with reducing crime and violence, and it would also help stop the criminalization of minorities who are caught using it,” said Wheatley, who also serves as Democratic chairman of the House Finance Committee. “Nine states and Washington, D.C., have legalized the recreational use of cannabis and it is my hope that Pennsylvania will become the tenth state to do so.” Wheatley noted that over 60 percent of Pennsylvanians support the legalization of cannabis. Last month he launched a petition to support his upcoming legislation and so far it has garnered over 7,000 signatures. The petition can be viewed here . Two years ago, Gov. Tom Wolf signed a medical cannabis bill into law and most recently, Pittsburgh Mayor Read more
PITTSBURGH, Sept. 11 – On the 10th anniversary of the start of Pennsylvania's Clean Indoor Air Act (CIAA), elected officials joined with advocates to celebrate the health benefits of a decade of the law and to call for extending those same benefits to all employees in Pennsylvania. The law took effect on Sept. 11, 2008, creating standardized rules requiring most Pennsylvania businesses to go smoke-free. Since then, the vast majority of businesses in the commonwealth have gone smoke-free. However, due to broad exemptions for bars and casinos, thousands of employees at more than 1,700 businesses are still exposed to tobacco smoke in their workplace. House Democratic Caucus Chairman Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, said, “This is a simple matter of fairness. If you work in most businesses in Pennsylvania, your lungs are protected. But if your job is one of the more than 1,700 that have asked to be exempt from the law, you’re not. It’s been a decade. We know the law works. Let’s make it work for everyone. All Pennsylvania workers have a right to breathe free.” Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa, D-Allegheny, said, “It’s simply unacceptable to improve working conditions for most Pennsylvanians, but selectively choose some workers to be exposed to the known dangers of second-hand smoke. Ten years is already too long. We should pass legislation to improve the health conditions of all workplaces.” Allegheny County passed its Read more
HARRISBURG, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Sid Michaels Kavulich, D-Lackawanna, today announced Carbondale Area School District will receive a $500,000 grant for updates and building and energy related improvements at the elementary, high school and Mount Carmel district buildings. The grant will allow the district to provide new lighting and heating, ventilation and air conditioning improvements as well as investments in energy-saving opportunities in the elementary school building. The district’s Mount Carmel building will also receive needed updates for HVAC, lighting, security, roofing, restrooms and other building energy usage improvements. The district’s high school building will be remodeled and receive additional energy-related improvements. “This funding is crucial to the future of Carbondale Area School District,” Kavulich said. “By updating and improving our schools and district offices, we are providing our students and those who teach them resources needed to succeed, while also alleviating partial financial burdens from local taxpayers. I look forward to working with school and state officials to maximize the potential of this grant.” Kavulich acknowledged Gov. Tom Wolf’s commitment to community development and job creation, and thanked him for the authorization of the funding. The Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, from which this grant was awarded, is a commonwealth grant program overseen by the Office of Read more
ERIE, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Ryan A. Bizzarro, D-Erie, will host his fourth annual free Senior Fair and Older Living Expo with state Sen. Michele Brooks from 10 a.m. to noon Friday, Sept. 14, at Our Lady of the Lake Church, 128 Sunset Dr. Edinboro, 16412. “I look forward to connecting with all of the senior residents I serve,” Bizzarro said. “The Senior Fair provides a wealth of information to constituents related to retirement financial planning, healthcare and housing, among other things important to our older family members and neighbors.” Bizzarro said several local and state organizations and exhibitors will provide health screenings, information about the upcoming flu season, veterans’ benefits information and other useful information for older residents. Bizzarro and his staff will be available to outline how his office can help seniors access programs such as the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program and prescription assistance through PACE and PACENET. No RSVP is required. More information is available by calling Bizzarro’s office at 814-835-2880 or visiting the office at 1101 Peninsula Drive, Suite 209, in the Peninsula Plaza. Read more
UPPER DARBY, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Margo Davidson, D-Delaware, said she applauds Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding, which was announced Friday, was competitively awarded as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to provide municipalities money to reduce gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for taking action to address this crisis,” said Davidson, vice chair of the PA SAFE Caucus. “Gun violence is an epidemic in Pennsylvania. In Upper Darby this past summer, there was an uptick in the number of shootings — a teenager killed at a house party, a storeowner nearly shot to death by a thief, a man shot while fleeing from two Upper Darby teenagers who stole his car. Last week, many parents were terrified to hear there was an online threat of a shooting at Upper Darby High School. Fortunately, someone was arrested before anything happened. “We need to urgently act in order to dramatically reduce gun violence in our area. This needed funding will empower municipalities by giving them greater access to tools and resources to fight this scourge, which is destroying our communities.” The Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is committed to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use Read more
WEST CHESTER, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, today said she thanks Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding was competitively awarded to certain municipalities as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to reduce gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for his leadership in working with local governments to address this crisis,” said Comitta, a member of the PA SAFE Caucus. “This funding is a step in the right direction in empowering our communities to reduce gun violence and create healthier, safer communities.” Comitta said the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is dedicated to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use of new and existing law-enforcement tools, resources to curb effects of addiction and illegal drugs, and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. “Gun violence has claimed the lives of too many Pennsylvanians,” Comitta said. “It is going to take all of us in state and local government working together to put an end to gun violence in Pennsylvania. This is good government putting people first.” Read more
LEVITTOWN, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Tina Davis, D-Bucks, thanked Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million in funding to be distributed across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding was competitively awarded as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to provide municipalities with the funds to implement strategies aimed at reducing gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for working with local governments to address this crisis,” said Davis, a member of the PA Safe Caucus. “This funding is a step in the right direction in empowering our communities to reduce gun violence and create healthier, safer communities.” Davis said the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is committed to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use of new and existing law-enforcement tools, resources to curb effects of addiction and illegal drugs, and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. “Gun violence is an everyday reality for too many Pennsylvanians,” Davis said. “It is going to take all of us in state and local government working together to put an end to gun violence in Pennsylvania. This is good government putting people first.” Read more
On this, the 17th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York City; Washington, D.C.; and Somerset County, Pa., and on the United States as a whole, we reflect on our painful past, but are grateful for how much our nation has accomplished in the face of tragedy. It is painful to remember that day, and it will always be painful. But let us not forget the stories of heroism, courage and bravery that reflect the very core of what it means to be American. Let us never forget the first responders who saved lives in New York City and Washington D.C., or the group of courageous passengers who saved lives by fighting back on that plane that crashed in Somerset County. Were it not for them, the loss could have been much worse. The actions of our soldiers, firefighters, EMTs and police officers are courageous. Today, we reflect on what now is the most somber occasion for our nation. We also mark this occasion by sharing not only in our grief, but in our patriotism and overwhelming pride for our country. Today is a date that will always be sacred in America. Our backgrounds and our lives may differ greatly, but there is a common thread that holds us all together and connects us on a very deep level; that is that this country has shaped those lives, this country has affords us all opportunities and allowed many of us to see our dreams and the dreams of our children come true. That common thread is that we all take pride in our country and its people. Read more
ALLENTOWN, Sept. 10 – State Rep. Peter Schweyer today announced he will host several events in his district next week to assist constituents. “I’m pleased to host my monthly Medicare assistance program and veterans assistance outreach as well as my annual car seat safety check,” Schweyer said. “Hosting events like these make it possible for my constituents to learn about many programs available to them. In the case of the car seat safety check, constituents are able to ensure they are safely transporting the children in their lives.” An APPRISE counselor will be present at Schweyer’s office – 1912 S. Fourth St. – from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 18 for people wishing to sign up for Medicare, or those who want to change their plan. The counselor is also available to answer questions about Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans, Programs for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly and various low-income assistance programs. Appointments are required by calling Schweyer’s office at 610-791-6270. Schweyer’s office will also host a car seat check for families from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20 at the Neighborhood Center, 417 N. Seventh St. The event will allow safety officials to help families make sure children are protected while traveling with properly installed car seats in vehicles. Appointments are not necessary for this event. A representative from the American Legion will be in Schweyer's Read more
NANTICOKE, Sept. 10 – State Rep. Gerald Mullery, D-Luzerne, will sponsor a free shredding event for residents of the 119th Legislative District from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 15 at Crestwood High School. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 10 – State Rep. Emilio Vázquez, D-Phila., invites constituents to a series of office meet-and-greet events he is hosting at his satellite office, 1421 W. Susquehanna Ave., Suite 197, Philadelphia. The first event will take place from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20, and will be held at the same time on the third Thursday of each month through November. “This type of event in particular allows me to hear firsthand from my constituents about the issues most important to them, and to update them on legislative developments in Harrisburg," Vázquez said. Vázquez said he and his staff will discuss the ways the office can connect constituents to state-related programs and services, such as the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, among others. No RSVP is required. For more information, constituents can contact Vázquez’s office at (215) 425-5708. Read more
HARRISBURG, Sept. 10 – State Rep. Helen Tai, D-Bucks, today announced she is introducing a resolution directing the Joint State Government Commission to study the mental health provider shortage in Pennsylvania and issue a report no later than one year after its adoption. The commission’s report would explore the factors behind the MHP shortage, make projections on the number of providers in the future and offer recommendations to stop and reverse the shortage. “Access to mental health services and providers are key to addressing so many of the problems Pennsylvanians struggle with each day, including substance abuse disorders, school safety and rising rates of suicide,” Tai said. “As the demand for mental health services has grown, there continues to be a shortage of mental health providers to meet their needs. We cannot ignore this worsening crisis, which is why I issued a co-sponsorship memo today to bring on as many of my fellow legislators as possible to join in support of this important resolution.” If adopted, the resolution would require the JSGC in its report to, at a minimum: Identify the factors behind the MHP shortage in Pennsylvania; Make projections on the number of MHPs in Pennsylvania in five and 10 years; Determine how telemedicine can be used to extend the mental health workforce in rural counties; Determine how Pennsylvania government entities can encourage more people to enter and remain in Read more
HARRISBURG, Sept. 7 – State Rep. Perry Warren joined other state legislators aboard the historic A.J. Meerwald Tall Ship Friday to tour the Delaware River Basin. Warren, D-Bucks, was among the members of the Joint Legislative Air and Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee on the legislative briefing and tour, setting out from Bristol Wharf. The day’s events included educational briefings from the Delaware River Basin Commission on managing the flow of the Delaware River, water quality monitoring programs, and the water supply and permitting process, as well as a presentation from the Bayshore Discovery Center. “The Delaware River Basin plays an important role in our community and the state, and this tour was an excellent chance to learn more and get a deeper understanding of the issues affecting the river and the water we drink,” Warren said. “Conservation of our water and waterways is one of our top priorities.” Read more
HARRISBURG, Sept. 7 – Members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus applauded the announcement made today by Gov. Tom Wolf that more than $1.5 million in funding will be allocated across the commonwealth to help reduce gun violence. "The crisis created by the illegal gun violence epidemic cannot be averted without those on the frontlines of this fight having access to the resources and tools needed to do the work of healing those affected,” said state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., PLBC chairman. “The PLBC is proud to stand with Governor Wolf as we begin to ensure that our communities have the support and tools needed to begin to address this public health crisis." “The PLBC has been working hard to address gun violence in our community as a public health issue, because we understood that resources follow public health concerns. Today’s grant is a result of our collective work with Governor Wolf, city officials, and local advocates,” said state Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila., vice chair of the PLBC. “As a member of the School Safety and Security Committee, I hope to bring more resources to Philadelphia to address gun violence in and around our schools.” “It is no secret there is a gun violence epidemic in the commonwealth. From Philadelphia to Pittsburgh and all points in between, shootings are taking lives one or two at a time, destroying our communities and families,” said state Rep. Chris Read more
PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 7 – After five months of construction, state Rep. Ed Neilson applauded the reopening of the Frankford Avenue Bridge that crosses the Pennypack Creek. Neilson attended the ribbon cutting for the reopening, which was officiated by PennDOT and the city of Philadelphia. “Many people have been anticipating the reopening of this bridge, myself included, and it is great to see that happen, ahead of schedule too,” Neilson said. “In the past two years, the state has invested nearly $1.8 billion in my district and surrounding areas for construction and improvement projects. The work done on this bridge is yet another great investment for the people of Northeast Philadelphia and the surrounding communities.” During the five-month closure, crews repaired part of the stone arch, reconstructed damaged stone masonry walls, rebuilt sidewalks and replaced the bridge barrier with a new crashworthy bridge barrier. Built in 1697 and reconstructed in 1893, the U.S. 13 (Frankford Avenue) bridge is a three-span stone masonry and concrete closed spandrel arch structure. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the bridge is 73 feet long, 50 feet wide and carries about 14,745 vehicles a day, including SEPTA’s Route 66 trolley. Read more
HARRISBURG, Sept. 7 – State Rep. Austin Davis, D-Allegheny, today announced the city of McKeesport received a $149,999 state grant to support gun violence reduction initiatives through the McKeesport Gun Violence Reduction Program. “I’m happy to announce this state funding that will assist McKeesport in reducing gun violence,” Davis said. “The safety of our citizens is of the utmost importance, and this funding will assist the GVRP in successfully carrying out their mission of making the 35 th Legislative District a safe place everyone is proud to call home.” Davis said the funding will be used for personnel and consultant-related costs, equipment and outreach programs. The McKeesport Gun Violence Reduction Program is a multi-faceted approach that includes the use of proactive policing strategies, youth and family interventions, and the hiring of a community outreach specialist. The program includes partnerships with the McKeesport Police Department, Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office, Allegheny County Health Department, Allegheny County Juvenile Probation, Pennsylvania Adult Probation, Magisterial District Judge Eugene Riazzi, McKeesport Housing Authority, McKeesport School District, the Health Communities PartnerSHIP, and area ministerium. Today’s funding for Davis’ district is part of a $1.5 million funding package disbursed to eight commonwealth municipalities for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Read more
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