Pa. joins in nationwide investigation of opioid companies

(Jun 16, 2017)

Glad to gain a valuable ally in the fight against opioid abuse. I served with Attorney General Josh Shapiro in the House and sent him a letter in February asking Pennsylvania to sue Big Pharma. Read more

 

Attorney general’s investigation into opioid marketing and sale falls in line with Burns’ call for lawsuit against ‘Big Pharma’

(Jun 15, 2017)

EBENSBURG, June 15 – Encouraged by news that Pennsylvania’s Attorney General has joined a consortium of state top prosecutors investigating drug manufacturers’ role in the opioid crisis, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, is hopeful the findings will spur the lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies that he called for earlier this year. Burns said today’s announcement that Attorney General Josh Shapiro is among those investigating possible unlawful practices in the marketing and sale of opioids falls directly in line with letters Burns sent to Shapiro and Gov. Tom Wolf in February. “I urge you to file a lawsuit against any and all pharmaceutical companies responsible for this crisis because of their negligence in informing consumers of the dangers of these types of drugs and their ruthless promotion of their use,” Burns wrote. “’Big Pharma’ is lining its pockets and the wallets of doctors who prescribe these medications, while the number of people addicted and affected in the commonwealth continues to rise.” Regarding today’s news, Burns said it’s clear that drug manufacturers’ role and potential legal culpability in the opioid plague have gotten the attention of Shapiro, his former Democratic colleague in the House of Representatives. “I commend the attorney general for making this bold move – and if the evidence leads where I think it will, I encourage Mr. Shapiro to file Read more

 

Cambria, Cresson and Jackson townships approved for community development grants

(Jun 13, 2017)

Rep. Frank Burns reports that Cambria, Cresson and Jackson townships have been approved for community development grants totaling almost $272,000. “Improvement initiatives funded with these grants are important to keeping the region up to date," Burns said. Read more

 

PA House bill proposes mandatory drug treatment for overdose victims

(Jun 09, 2017)

My bill that would require drug overdose survivors to seek treatment within 30 days is getting attention across the state. Here's a TV news segment that perfectly encapsulates why I'm doing this. Read more

 

Burns: Upper Yoder Township gets $195,967 grant for traffic signal upgrades

(Jun 09, 2017)

Money comes from red light violations in Philadelphia EBENSBURG, June 9 – Noting that his reminder to apply from a year ago has paid off, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, today announced a $195,967 grant to Upper Yoder Township for signal upgrades at Woodmont Road and Menoher Boulevard (State Route 0271). Burns said the source of funding – PennDOT’s 2016 Automated Red Light Enforcement Program – comes from red light violations in Philadelphia. An eight-member committee then distributes the money statewide for relatively low-cost projects that improve safety, enhance mobility and reduce congestion. “Last year, I wanted to make sure that municipalities in the 72 nd Legislative District were aware of this grant opportunity, so I publicized it and offered them application assistance by contacting any of my constituent service offices,” Burns said. “It’s great to see that Upper Yoder Township is getting nearly $200,000 – and I hope that we have additional successes in next year’s round of funding.” Burns said the grants can be applied for and used for improvements to traffic signals, roadways at intersections with traffic signals, or school zones – and such things as installing guiderails or making roadside safety enhancements. Burns said any municipality interested in applying for 2017 funding should contact one of his offices. Read more

 

Summer jobs for $15 an hour available through DCNR in the Altoona area

(Jun 07, 2017)

If you're interested in earning $15 an hour for summer work as an outdoor crew leader, here are the details. Read more

 

Burns: Require drug overdose survivors to get addiction treatment within 30 days, sue ‘Big Pharma’ for contributing to the crisis

(Jun 07, 2017)

EBENSBURG, June 7 – As part of a multi-pronged effort to combat opioid abuse, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, has introduced H.B. 1501 , which would require those who experience a drug overdose event to seek addiction treatment within 30 days. In Burn’s vision, funding for that treatment would come from pharmaceutical companies that have promoted the opioid crisis, as he earlier this year wrote letters to Gov. Tom Wolf and Attorney General Josh Shapiro urging a state lawsuit against “Big Pharma” for fostering the problem while lining its own pockets via prescription drugs. “On the one hand, we need to have accountability and responsibility on the part of those who overdose. They should either accept treatment or go to jail, because repeatedly reviving them with naxalone without solving their underlying problem is insane,” Burns said. “On the other hand, taxpayers who had nothing to do with causing this epidemic shouldn’t be asked to foot the bill for treatment. Payment should come from those who profited by promoting the problem.” Burns’ bill is companion legislation to a similar proposal in the state Senate, S.B. 654 , which seeks to toughen existing state law relating to drug overdose response immunity. “While I support the good intention of Act 139, the Drug Overdose Good Samaritan Law, we have learned from first responders that they have been repeatedly called to the same location for the Read more

 

Letters to Gov. Wolf, Attorney General Shapiro urging state opioid lawsuit

(Jun 06, 2017)

I wrote letters to Gov. Tom Wolf and Attorney General Josh Shaprio, urging them to consider a state lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies that have promoted the opioid crisis. Read more

 

Burns resolution declaring ‘National Police Week’ unanimously passes House

(May 10, 2017)

EBENSBURG, May 10 – Continuing his strong commitment to law enforcement, state Rep. Frank Burns today announced that May 14 through 20 will be “National Police Week” in Pennsylvania, per his resolution unanimously approved by the House. Burns’ H.R. 16 also designates May 15 as “Police Officers Memorial Day” in the commonwealth. “It is important that all citizens know and understand the duties, responsibilities, hazards and sacrifices that law enforcement personnel face every day,” said Burns, D-Cambria. “On a daily basis, they serve the people by safeguarding life and property, by protecting them against violence and disorder, and by protecting the innocent from deception and the weak from oppression.” Burns said that in 1962 President John F. Kennedy signed a proclamation designating May 15 as “Peace Officers Memorial Day” and that week in which that date fell as “Police Week.” Since then, tens of thousands of law enforcement officers from around the world participate each year in numerous events to honor those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. Beginning in 1982, Burns said, a memorial service began in Senate Park, Washington, D.C., during what is now called “National Police Week.” Burns is the founder of the legislative House Blue Lives Matter Caucus. He is also the prime sponsor of H.B. 158 , the Blue Lives Matter bill that would make Read more

 

Burns resolution urging elimination of OxyContin prescriptions for teens clears House committee

(May 08, 2017)

HARRISBURG, May 8 – Hoping to weaken the link between prescription drugs and opioid addiction , state Rep. Frank Burns today announced progress on his resolution seeking to pressure the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to reverse its decision to allow OxyContin to be prescribed for 11- to 16-year-olds. Burns’ H.R. 17 cleared the House Human Services Committee unanimously and now heads to the full House for consideration. Burns noted that despite its status as an extended-release version of the opioid oxydocone, OxyContin was approved by the FDA in 2015 for prescribing to children as a pain management medication. “In recent years, we’ve all become aware that the highly addictive nature of opioids means that many adults are ‘hooked’ on legally prescribed medicines, then turn to illicit and more dangerous drugs like heroin to maintain their habits,” Burns said. “Given what we know, I ask you: Does it make sense to prescribe opioids to an 11-year-old?” While the state legislature has no direct say in the decisions of a federal government agency, Burns said his goal is to use the legislature’s bully pulpit to help convince federal rule-makers that they should reverse course. “Four out of five new heroin users started out misusing prescription pain medication, which resulted in heroin overdose deaths nearly quadrupling from 2000 to 2013 – and it’s only gotten worse since then,” Burns Read more

 

Burns: Community Leaning Center grant opportunity opens

(May 01, 2017)

EBENSBURG, May 1 – A competitive grant program that provides federal funds to establish community learning centers that provide academic, artistic and cultural enrichment opportunities for students and their families is now accepting applications, according to state Rep. Frank Burns. Burns, D-Cambria, said opportunities offered through the 21 st Century Community Learning Centers Grant must occur during non-school hours or periods when school is not in session, to help students attending high-poverty and low-performing schools to meet state and local standards in core academic subjects. Burns also said the centers must also offer students a broad array of activities that can complement their regular academic programs, to offer literacy and other educational services to their families. “I encourage all education-related entities in the 72 nd Legislative District to look into this program and, if interested, to apply,” Burns said. The 21 st CCLC Grant is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. In addition to academics, grantees may also use the funds to carry out a broad array of activities that advance student academic achievement and support student success, including before- and after-school, summer, Saturdays and holiday programming. A minimum of 50 percent of daily programming must directly target reading, math and science enrichment, with the balance of activities occurring on a rotational basis. More information can be Read more

 

Technical support center bringing more than 200 jobs to Johnstown region

(Apr 26, 2017)

As I said in this Tribune-Democrat story, I welcome this new employer to Lower Yoder Township and believe they'll find an eager, qualified work force. Read more

 

Burns Applauds Job Creation

(Apr 25, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Frank Burns, who has made economic development a top priority, hailed an announcement that 251 full-time jobs are coming to Lower Yoder Township this summer. Read more

 

Burns: 251 jobs coming to Lower Yoder Township continues fulfillment of goals laid out at October public hearing

(Apr 25, 2017)

EBENSBURG, April 25 – State Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, who has made economic development in the 72 nd Legislative District a top priority, hailed today’s announcement that 251 full-time jobs are coming to Lower Yoder Township starting this summer. Burns said the decision by Convergys Corp., a global customer management service provider, to invest $2.7 million and lease a nearly 27,000-square-foot facility, falls in line with the goals laid out at the House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing on economic development he hosted in Ebensburg in October. “I chose economic development to focus on for a reason – and that reason was to bring new jobs to our area,” Burns said. “This is the second major jobs-related announcement we’ve had in the past two months, so we’re obviously on the move and getting attention from outside employers. Let’s hope that trend continues.” In February, Burns announced a $1.9 million state grant to help create a Business Aviation Management Degree Program at Saint Francis University, in a cooperative venture with John Murtha Johnstown-Cambria County Airport. “I welcome Convergys Corp. to Lower Yoder Township and am confident they’ll find an eager, qualified work force that will justify the firm’s multi-million-dollar investment,” Burns said. Read more

 

Burns rallies support for PHEAA scholarships for volunteers while participating in Cambria County Fire School

(Apr 24, 2017)

PATTON, April 24 – The Volunteer Recruitment Service Scholarship Act proposed by state Rep. Frank Burns to help boost sagging membership in the unpaid emergency services field took center stage during a noon news conference yesterday at the Cambria County Fire School. Before suiting up to engage in scheduled afternoon training sessions with firefighters, Burns, D-Cambria, outlined the merits of his H.B. 48 , which would provide state scholarships to fire company, ambulance service and rescue squad volunteers. Burns said he drafted the bill with a two-fold mission: as a means to allow emergency services to attract and retain volunteers, and as a way to help young people defray the cost of higher education while introducing them to important community service. “We are all aware of the serious manpower shortages facing, in particular, the volunteer fire departments that have served our communities so well for so long,” Burns said. “The situation is reaching crisis proportions, and I believe that offering Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency scholarships to volunteers is one way to think outside the box to solve this problem.” Under Burns’ bill, recipients would be required to be a member of a volunteer organization for at least six months and maintain active volunteer status, have graduated from high school or have received a high school equivalency diploma. They would also have to enroll in a degree-producing curriculum Read more

 

Burns resolution declaring April as ‘Occupational Therapy Month’ approved by House

(Apr 04, 2017)

HARRISBURG, April 4 – State Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, said his H.R. 15 designating April as “Occupational Therapy Month” in Pennsylvania was adopted unanimously by the House today. “The health and productivity of the citizens of Pennsylvania depend on the effective use of health care resources, including the important services of occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants,” Burns said. “Their work helps people overcome the effects of illnesses, injuries and any other conditions that keep them from living life to its fullest.” Burns said both the American Occupational Therapy Association and Pennsylvania Occupational Therapy Association have also declared the month of April 2017 as “Occupational Therapy Month,” in honor of these dedicated professionals. “Occupational therapy practitioners help citizens achieve participation in their favored everyday activities and occupations, through the use of client-centered evaluation and intervention strategies,” Burns said. “The services of occupational therapy are available to citizens of Pennsylvania through hospitals, rehabilitation hospitals, home health agencies, schools, clinics, psychiatric facilities, community-based service centers and nursing homes.” Read more

 

Burns: $400,000 grant to replace Jackson Township wastewater lines

(Mar 29, 2017)

EBENSBURG, March 29 – State Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, today announced a $400,000 state grant to the Jackson East Taylor Sewer Authority to replace sewer lines at Leisure Village Mobile Home Park in Jackson Township. Burns said the project includes installing 3,300 linear feet of 8-inch sewer main, 72 service laterals with 5,700 feet of 4-inch sewer pipe and 11 manholes, at a total project cost of $500,000. “The existing lines are undersized and have poor alignment, which results in inflow and infiltration problems,” Burns said. “I’m very happy to inform my constituents that state funding will cover four-fifths of the cost of this vital infrastructure improvement project.” The state grant arrives through the Department of Community and Economic Development’s PA Small Water and Sewer grant program, which funds activities to assist with construction, improvement, expansion, or rehabilitation or repair of a water supply or sanitary sewer system. Eligible projects must have a total project cost between $30,000 and $500,000, and funding is available for municipalities and municipal authorities. Read more

 

Burns hosts annual Pet Food Drive in conjunction with April being ‘Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month’

(Mar 24, 2017)

EBENSBURG, March 24 – Seizing the opportunity to remind folks that he favors stiffer animal abuse penalties, state Rep. Frank Burns will host his annual Pet Food Drive from April 1 through 30 at his four offices and in participating 72 nd Legislative District schools. Burns, D-Cambria, noted that April is an opportune time to start the drive, as it is “Prevention of Cruelty to Animals” month. He is asking residents to donate non-perishable pet food items, either in the classrooms of participating schools or at one of his four constituent service offices: 535 Fairfield Ave., Lower Yoder Township, Johnstown, 15906; 119 S. Center St., Ebensburg, 15931; 112-A Munster Road, Portage, 15946; or Patton Senior Center, 405 Park Ave., 16668 (9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays). In addition to schools, Burns is coordinating this drive with a local animal protection organization. As in years past, Burns will arrange for school pickup and delivery of the items to that county organization. “Residents of the 72 nd Legislative District have always shown great support for this effort – we literally get truckloads of donated pet food items from the schools – and I’m confident that they’ll do so again,” Burns said. “This cause is something that’s near and dear to all of our hearts.” Burns also noted he has been a staunch advocate of toughening the commonwealth’s animal abuse penalties, Read more

 

Burns supports law enforcement, favors 30-day delay before releasing officer names in shooting incidents

(Mar 23, 2017)

HARRISBURG, March 23 – Siding with the belief that their premature release could spur vigilante-style behavior and unfairly tarnish reputations, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, voted this week to temporarily delay divulging police officer names in shooting or serious injury cases . Burns voted in favor of H.B. 27 , which would create a 30-day cooling off period before the names of any law enforcement officers involved in a firearm-discharge or use-of-force incident while on duty could be publicly released. However, under the legislation supported by Burns, the names could be released sooner, provided the official investigation into such an incident is concluded. “In these inflammatory times, we’ve seen one too many cases where a partial video, lying witnesses or incomplete information prompt a social media rush to judgement, which is disproven once all the facts are in,” Burns said. “If our legal motto is that everyone is innocent until proven guilty, that right must extend to members of law enforcement.” Burns last year voted in favor of an identical bill (H.B. 1538), which passed the House 151-32 and also passed the Senate, only to be vetoed by the governor. This time around, he co-sponsored H.B. 27 even though it was introduced by a Republican, and the measure passed the House with even more support, 157-39. “It’s no secret that opposition to this bill is coming mostly from big-city legislators,” Burns Read more

 

Burns fights for U.S. workers: ‘Stop contractors from hiring illegals’

(Mar 21, 2017)

EBENSBURG, March 21 – U.S. jobs should go to U.S. workers, which is why state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, is again backing a measure to require construction industry contractors to verify that their employees are legal citizens. Burns previously sponsored H.B. 1881 and plans to do so when it’s reintroduced for the current legislative session, stating, “This bill is about saving Pennsylvania jobs, by penalizing unscrupulous contactors who hire illegals for personal gain.” Under the bill, private construction contractors would have to have their employees approved by the E-Verify system run by the Department of Homeland Security. Construction firms that hire illegal workers would face penalties affecting their licensing and would risk debarment for willful violations. Burns believes this legislation would level the playing field for contractors who do the right thing and hire legal workers. “If we are serious about stopping illegal immigration, then we must stop companies from hiring and exploiting illegal workers for profit,” Burns said. “Currently, there are 35,000 illegals working in the construction industry. These are jobs Pennsylvanians should have.” Burns acknowledges that for generations, immigrants have come to the United States in search of a job; however, he is also aware that illegal immigration is a constant drain on our country’s resources. “It’s time we hold corporate America Read more

 

Pa. joins in nationwide investigation of opioid companies
Jun 16, 2017

Attorney general’s investigation into opioid marketing and sale falls in line with Burns’ call for lawsuit against ‘Big Pharma’
Jun 15, 2017

Cambria, Cresson and Jackson townships approved for community development grants
Jun 13, 2017

PA House bill proposes mandatory drug treatment for overdose victims
Jun 09, 2017

Burns: Upper Yoder Township gets $195,967 grant for traffic signal upgrades
Jun 09, 2017

Summer jobs for $15 an hour available through DCNR in the Altoona area
Jun 07, 2017

Burns: Require drug overdose survivors to get addiction treatment within 30 days, sue ‘Big Pharma’ for contributing to the crisis
Jun 07, 2017

Letters to Gov. Wolf, Attorney General Shapiro urging state opioid lawsuit
Jun 06, 2017

Burns resolution declaring ‘National Police Week’ unanimously passes House
May 10, 2017

Burns resolution urging elimination of OxyContin prescriptions for teens clears House committee
May 08, 2017

Burns: Community Leaning Center grant opportunity opens
May 01, 2017

Technical support center bringing more than 200 jobs to Johnstown region
Apr 26, 2017

Burns Applauds Job Creation
Apr 25, 2017

Burns: 251 jobs coming to Lower Yoder Township continues fulfillment of goals laid out at October public hearing
Apr 25, 2017

Burns rallies support for PHEAA scholarships for volunteers while participating in Cambria County Fire School
Apr 24, 2017

Burns resolution declaring April as ‘Occupational Therapy Month’ approved by House
Apr 04, 2017

Burns: $400,000 grant to replace Jackson Township wastewater lines
Mar 29, 2017

Burns hosts annual Pet Food Drive in conjunction with April being ‘Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month’
Mar 24, 2017

Burns supports law enforcement, favors 30-day delay before releasing officer names in shooting incidents
Mar 23, 2017

Burns fights for U.S. workers: ‘Stop contractors from hiring illegals’
Mar 21, 2017