Senior news/August 2017

ANIMAL PROTECTIONS: I recently joined the governor, lawmakers, animal activists and many four-legged friends for the enactment of Act 10 of 2017, the landmark overhaul of Pennsylvania’s animal-protection laws.

The new law is better known as Libre’s Law for the pup left for dead but nursed back to health. Libre’s valiant survival helped sustain momentum for the legislation.

I was proud to champion the legislation, an effort that encompassed several years and numerous bills that I drafted. Over two years ago, I fought for my legislation calling for forfeiture of abused animals after conviction. Today, forfeiture provisions are included in Act 10.

Thanks to Libre, the Humane Society, animal rights advocates, fellow lawmakers and the governor for enacting this important bill!

UTILITY IMPOSTERS: Please be on the lookout for criminals impersonating utility workers.

Seniors home alone during the day are often targets. Imposters, often wearing bogus uniforms, typically divert the resident’s attention while they or an accomplice rob the home.

If someone unexpectedly comes to your door claiming to be from a utility, do not let them inside without proper photo identification. If you have any doubts, call the 800 number on your utility bill. If you have any suspicions about the person’s identity, call 9-1-1 immediately. The operator will be able to verify if any legitimate work is scheduled in the area. 

AUG. 28 SENIOR FAIR: My fifth annual Senior Fair is a great way to learn how best to live healthy and productive lives.

The free event geared toward residents 60 or older is set for 9 a.m. to noon, Monday, Aug. 28, at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center, 301 Peninsula Drive, Erie.

The event features health screenings, light refreshments and information from dozens of vendors. My staff and I will be there to answer any questions about state programs and services.

I hope to see you there!

REBATES IN THE MAIL: Property tax and rent rebates already are in the mail to older homeowners, renters, and people with disabilities across Pennsylvania.

You can apply through Dec. 31 for a rebate check on property taxes or rent paid in 2016, and my offices can help. It costs nothing to apply!

Eligible for rebates are Pennsylvanians 65 or older; widows and widowers 50 or older; and people with disabilities 18 or older. Income limits are $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters. Half of Social Security income is excluded.

The maximum standard rebate is $650.

WE CAN HELP: If you have questions about any state programs or resources, please contact my offices.

My main office in Millcreek at 101 Peninsula Drive, Suite 209 is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesdays. The phone number is 814-835-2880.

My Edinboro office in the Edinboro Municipal Building at 124 Meadville St., Suite 222, is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays. The phone number is 814-734-2773.

My staff is available by appointment weekdays at the McKean Township Municipal Building at 9231 Edinboro Road. Please call 814- 835-2880 to schedule an appointment.

My staff and I enjoy serving you!