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Ciresi introduces legislation to prevent gift card scams

Ciresi votes to open PA garden centers safely, quickly

(Apr 30, 2020)

HARRISBURG, April 30 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, today announced that the House passed a bill to open garden centers, whose work is critical to helping Pennsylvanians provide food for themselves and the environment, after an amendment supported by Ciresi and fellow Democrats was added on to provide critical health and public safety requirements for employees and customers. The bill must be passed in the Senate before going to Gov. Tom Wolf. Ciresi said the requirements to protect workers are in line with Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine’s direction to keep people safe and calm while reopening the economy. “What we are looking to do is reopen our state safely above all else,” Ciresi said. “We are taking very cautious first steps to open garden centers so that folks can provide food for themselves and others can get back to work in a proper manner that follows our state health department and national CDC guidelines. This legislation, with additional safety and worker protections, brings our policy in line with most of our neighboring states and is critical to making sure our nurseries and garden centers can survive as businesses after this outbreak is over, without sacrificing our public health." Under the bill, all stores that receive a waiver and operate would be required to provide, at minimum, the following protections for an essential employee: Additional hazard pay, Read more


Ciresi offers amendment, continues to push for COVID-19 small business support

(Apr 21, 2020)

HARRISBURG, APRIL 21 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, today announced that although amendments to H.B. 2369 were not approved by the House Commerce Committee, he will continue to push for legislation that would benefit those who have been adversely affected by COVID-19. “I’ve been working diligently with members to create a package of bills that can deal with the crisis at hand and allow us to make a speedy recovery,” Ciresi said. “We have heard from constituents and are pushing to re-open the COVID-19 Working Capital Access loan program, add more non-profits to the eligibility list, and enable more life sciences and research to help develop methods to stifle this pandemic. We need to come together to make sure everyone has their needs met during this time. I look forward to continuing my work with my colleagues and calling for more action to serve our working families who are struggling most.” Ciresi’s amendment would have re-opened the COVID-19 Working Capital Access loan program with a $100 million transfer from the Rainy Day Fund and added non-profits and the life sciences industry to the list of eligible businesses for the program. Ciresi plans to introduce standalone legislation that would accomplish the same goals as the defeated amendment. Ciresi is also in the process of introducing a previously announced bill to create a $50 million grant program for Read more


Ciresi pushes state COVID-19 relief bill package

(Apr 09, 2020)

HARRISBURG, APRIL 9 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, today announced a set of bills to provide relief to those negatively affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. “While I applaud the actions already taken by the state and federal governments, we need to do more to help our constituents – our small business owners, workers who can’t get to their jobs, and homeowners wondering how they’ll pay their property taxes,” Ciresi said. “This is why I have proposed several bills to provide important relief, and signed on as a co-sponsor to many great ideas that my colleagues have unveiled. I am calling on the House to take up these important bills and do more to support those in need right now.” Since the passage of a bipartisan COVID-19 bill package , which included a state income tax filing deadline extension pushed by Ciresi, by the legislature two weeks ago, Ciresi has proposed several new bills to provide relief and would do the following: • Create a $50 million grant program for small businesses to give them crucial relief and make sure that they can reopen after this crisis ends. • Extend the deadline to pay property taxes . Federal, state and local income tax deadlines have already been extended to July 15. • Revive the Pennsylvania COVID-19 Working Capital Access loan program through a transfer of $100 million from Read more


Ciresi thanks first responders and health care workers by calling on community to sound bells in unity on Monday

(Apr 06, 2020)

ROYERSFORD, APRIL 6 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, encourages fire stations and buildings of worship across Montgomery County to show solidarity by extending appreciation to first responders, health care workers, educators and others for their service during COVID-19 stay-at-home orders. First responders and religious leaders, if they choose to participate, should activate sirens or ring bells for up to five minutes on Monday, April 13 (Fire Stations at 7 p.m./ Houses of worship at 7:05 p.m.). Similar displays have occurred in New York. “Since last month, our citizens have shown tremendous resolve, kindness, and poise in the face of unprecedented uncertainty,” Ciresi said. “I cannot thank our EMTs, nurses, doctors, police officers, and all health and safety workers enough for persevering in the face of this invisible enemy. They are keeping us alive. So, I am asking for a public show of solidarity -- that we can all find joy in while staying safely at home.” Ciresi encourages everyone to adhere to the stay-at-home order issued by Gov. Tom Wolf for all 67 counties, in place until at least April 30. Ciresi’s office staff remains available by phone or email, although the physical office is closed. For more information, call 484-200-8265 or email RepCiresi@pahouse.net . ### Read more


Ciresi and Hanbidge sponsor bill to extend deadlines for property taxes due to COVID-19

(Apr 02, 2020)

HARRISBURG, APRIL 2 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi and Rep. Liz Hanbidge, both D-Montgomery, today announced that they will introduce a bill that would require counties, municipalities, and school districts to give their taxpayers an additional 60 days to pay their property taxes. “During these uncertain times, it’s best to put our taxpayers at ease in any way we can," Ciresi said. "This ensures that they are protected and given additional leeway to pay their property taxes before penalties can be imposed. They have enough to worry about already. Let’s not add an unnecessary burden to our working families.” “The legislature is working hard to craft proposals to help Pennsylvanians navigate the issues caused by COVID-19 and help them stay safe, healthy, and solvent,” Hanbidge said. “ Given the level of financial uncertainty facing many Pennsylvanians during this pandemic, we hope to alleviate some of the financial stress on them by offering temporary property tax relief." This bill would also temporarily waive the statutory requirement that tax collectors must hold office hours during the last two weeks of the discount period, as enforcing such laws would be putting others’ health and safety at risk. Both the federal and state personal income tax deadlines have been moved back to July 15. The lawmakers said similar taxes should follow along with Read more


COVID-19 Legislative Package Passed

(Mar 26, 2020)

This week, the Pennsylvania House and Senate convened remotely for the first time ever, working tirelessly to pass a package of bills to help deal with this global pandemic. Coronavirus mitigation guidelines will continue to remain in effect, but these bills will help us deal with the threat swiftly in this extremely difficult and unsure time. I was proud to vote for all of these bills, but I believe we need to do more to help our struggling small businesses and Pennsylvanians who are out of work, and I will continue to work with my colleagues in the legislature on achieving that. The following bills are headed to Governor Tom Wolf’s desk to be signed into law: House Bill 68 , which would allow those who are out of work because of COVID-19 to collect unemployment compensation and waive the “waiting week” and standard job search requirements. This bill was amended in the Senate this week to include compensation for workers affected by COVID-19. This bill also helps employers by not increasing their Unemployment Compensation taxes for benefits given to employees during this pandemic. House Bill 1232 , which would extend the deadline to file state taxes to match the new federal deadline of July 15th. This bill also would authorize up to $50 million of state funds to be transferred to aid a variety of health care providers including hospitals, emergency services, nursing homes and other entities throughout the commonwealth. Read more


Ciresi amends bill to ensure accurate assessment of manufactured homes

(Mar 25, 2020)

HARRISBURG, MARCH 25 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, said the House today passed legislation that included an amendment he authored to ensure that the latest assessments of manufactured homes would be done with the most recent evaluating manual. House Bill 1564 would set up standards to ensure that counties properly assess the value of manufactured homes during a countywide assessment. It would require an assessor to determine the actual value of a manufactured home by utilizing the value of a manufactured home in the most recent national directory or valuation guide that analyzes manufactured home sales and other relevant data, per Ciresi’s amendment; any depreciation in the value of the manufactured home; the ability of the manufactured home to be transported to another site; and the fair market value of the manufactured home. “I was happy to see the entire House agree with me that if these new assessments are to be done, they should be done with the latest standards and guidelines in mind,” Ciresi said. “My amendment ensures that HB1564 would truly hold up to its title of ‘real assessment value.’ It’s important that we set guidelines to keep these homes at their fair market value. “This was the second vote taken remotely in PA House history,” he added. The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration. More information is Read more


Governor Wolf’s order to close non-life-sustaining businesses, loans and support available

(Mar 20, 2020)

Governor Tom Wolf has ordered all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania to close their physical locations as of 8 p.m. Thursday, March 19, to slow the spread of COVID-19. Enforcement actions against businesses that do not close physical locations will begin at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, March 21. Gov. Wolf’s order is here. A list of life-sustaining businesses is here . If you are having trouble viewing this link due to high web traffic, use this link instead . In extenuating circumstances, special exemptions will be granted to businesses that are supplying or servicing health care providers. The PA Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) has established a new resource account where businesses and staff can submit questions on exemptions regarding the closure of physical locations for non-life-sustaining businesses in the Commonwealth. Businesses seeking exemptions from closure: Please contact ra-dcexemptions@pa.gov . Other questions about closures can be directed to ra-dcedcs@pa.gov . For more COVID-19 business information, DCED has set up a web site that continually will be updated as information becomes available: https://dced.pa.gov/resources . Business Loans and Support The DCED offers working capital loans that could be of assistance to businesses impacted by COVID-19. Resources and information will be posted to Read more


Ciresi supports Wolf’s call for COVID-19 mitigation efforts

(Mar 17, 2020)

MONTGOMERY, MARCH 17 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, today announced that all Montgomery County residents should distance themselves and heed the guidance of the Department of Health during the state’s COVID-19 disaster declaration. Governor Tom Wolf has ordered all restaurants and bars to close their dine-in facilities starting today for 14 days to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Businesses that offer carry-out, delivery, and drive-through food and beverage service may continue to do so, but eating and drinking inside restaurants and bars is temporarily prohibited. “It may seem like a large step to take, but a global pandemic and state emergency such as this requires us to be the most vigilant,” Ciresi said. “If we take these larger measures seriously, we can prevent the spread of this virus and be done with it quicker. If you are a younger and more able-bodied person, please take this opportunity to check in on your older or less abled neighbors. Check the Pennsylvania Health Department website for updates on what you can do to stay safe. Take care of yourselves and try your best to isolate during this time.” Businesses that do not adhere to this order could face enforcement actions. If you face a shortage of hours or displacement due to coronavirus concerns, check our state unemployment compensation website to see if you qualify. The administration has strongly urged that all Read more


Ciresi announces temporary district office closure

(Mar 12, 2020)

POTTSTOWN, March 12 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, announced today that his district office at 301 N. Lewis Road in Royersford is closed for the foreseeable future in order to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus . Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf this afternoon outlined further notices for Montgomery County, which can be found here . “My staff and constituents’ health are too important to jeopardize during this health emergency, and I encourage everyone who can to employ social distancing and stay at home unless it’s imperative to journey out for work or to seek care and necessities. My advice is keeping with this afternoon’s address from Governor Tom Wolf and Health Department Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine,” he said. “Additionally, I participated in a conference call with Montgomery County Commissioners Val Arkoosh and Ken Lawrence. As you may have heard by now, there are four new presumptive positive COVID-19 cases in the county, bringing the total to 13. “In an effort to get these numbers to drop, Dr. Arkoosh and Montgomery County announced today that all public and private schools will be closed for the next two weeks, beginning tomorrow, Friday, March 13. “I support the state and county’s efforts to stymie this virus in its tracks by limiting our interactions, especially with large groups of people. To do our part, our offices in Royersford and Pottstown will be closed Read more


Ciresi announces $17K grant for Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust

(Mar 05, 2020)

MONTGOMERY, MARCH 5 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, today announced that a $17,290 grant has been approved for the Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust. “Railroads have a rich history in Pennsylvania,” Ciresi said. “As the Keystone State, transportation of goods has always been a hallmark of what we do. I’m grateful that this money will be used to preserve this historical site. I was happy to fight for the allocation of these funds, and I’m even happier to see this money coming back to our community.” Cultural and Historical Support Grants are to provide general operating support to Pennsylvania museums and official county historical societies that are not directly supported by other state agency operating support programs. An eligible museum must have an annual operating budget exceeding $100,000 and at least one full-time professional staff person. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission received 153 applications. All applicants were eligible. Fifty-six official county historical societies applied for support grants and 12 qualified in the museum category. The number of counties to receive funding increased from 57 to 58 of the 67 counties. Museums outside of Philadelphia with budgets between $100,000 and $3.5 million receive a grant based on 1.235% of their operating budget, with grants no less than $4,000. For more information, reach out Read more


Miss my latest Tele-Town Hall? Listen to the discussion here.

(Feb 27, 2020)

Find out what our friends and neighbors had to say about the issues that matter to our community. Read more


School safety grants awarded around Montgomery County

(Feb 26, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 26 – Montgomery County state representatives today announced school safety and security grants awarded to school districts throughout the county. The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency’s School Safety and Security Committee awarded a total of $53.7 million in school safety grants. Montgomery County awards are as follows: Abington School District: $455,550 Agora Cyber Charter School: $143,226 Cheltenham Township School District: $45,000 Colonial School District: $45,000 Hatboro-Horsham School District: $45,000 Jenkintown School District: $30,000 Lower Merion School District: $45,000 Lower Moreland Township School District: $40,000 Methacton School District: $221,370 Norristown Area School District: $467,756 North Montco Technical Career Center: $150,000 North Penn School District: $45,000 Perkiomen Valley School District: $45,000 Pottsgrove School District: $40,000 Pottstown School District: $490,000 Souderton Area School District: $460,437 Springfield Township School District: $40,000 Spring-Ford Area School District: $45,000 Upper Dublin School District: $45,000 Upper Merion Area School District: $45,000 Upper Moreland School District: $40,000 Upper Perkiomen School District: $40,000 Western Montgomery Career & Technology Center: $72,994 Wissahickon School District: $45,000 Below are reactions from Democratic state Read more


Ciresi introduces legislation to benefit first responders

(Feb 07, 2020)

State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, introduced House Bill 2273 on Monday to benefit first responders. The bill would waive vehicle registration fees for volunteer first responders who use their own vehicles to travel to emergencies. Read more


Ciresi determined to find mass transit solution for commuters

(Feb 06, 2020)

State Rep. Joe Ciresi traveled via mass transit from his home in Montgomery County to Philadelphia Thursday morning to illustrate the tremendous amount of time and effort commuters experience every day heading to work. Read more


Ciresi applauds education cost-saving reforms in budget proposal

(Feb 04, 2020)

State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, released the following statement regarding Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposed 2020-21 budget unveiled today. Read more