Bizzarro, Harkins: Grant will help preserve region’s rich Civil War history

(Jan 11, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 11 – A $1,500 grant will help the Erie County Public Library permanently preserve the region’s rich Civil War history, state Reps. Ryan Bizzarro and Pat Harkins, both D-Erie, announced today. The library will use the Historical & Archival Records Care grant to digitize two volumes of books containing handwritten biographical sketches of Erie County Civil War veterans. “Documents like these tell the stories of our local heroes,” Bizzarro said. “The people and events they chronicle are part of the fabric that connects us as a community and gives us a common identity. It’s essential to preserve this history, and the funding announced today is going to do that for generations to come.” Harkins agreed, also noting the importance of document preservation for educational purposes. “Biographical sketches, first-hand accounts and similar documents are essential for preserving our region’s unique history and allowing us to corroborate information from other sources" he said. "Beyond that, they can provide something for students that textbooks can’t – a unique look back from a historical perspective that can make history come alive.” The grant – one of 16 approved by the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission – is administered by the Pennsylvania State Archives, a bureau of the PHMC. More information about the commission – the commonwealth’s Read more

 

Harkins, Merski: $157,160 grant will allow students to explore career pathways in manufacturing, health care

(Jan 10, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 10 – Students from low-income families will have a chance to explore career pathways in the manufacturing and health care industries, thanks to a $157,160 grant to a local workforce development board, state Reps. Pat Harkins and Bob Merski, both D-Erie, announced today. The funding to the Students in the Workplace project will offer about 400 low-income middle and high school students a real-world look at jobs in manufacturing and health care through programs such as job shadowing and career tours. “This grant is going to open doors for area students by bringing them into a real-world setting and letting them envision the possibilities,” Harkins said. “When it comes to career planning, there’s no better way to stimulate kids’ minds than to let them see and experience the real working world beyond the classroom.” Merski agreed, noting, “As essential as classroom learning is, there’s no substitute for letting kids interact with employers and employees in the field. This grant is going to provide for experiences such as job shadowing, soft-skills training and career tours, which will allow students to determine what careers truly excite them and how their own skills match up with real-world opportunities.” Harkins and Merski noted that in addition to providing students a real-world look at manufacturing and health care careers, the project aims to help area businesses and schools partner to Read more

 

Harkins: $141,900 grant will help working families with transportation needs

(Jan 09, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 9 – Working families needing transportation assistance to maintain employment will benefit from a $141,900 grant to a northwest Pennsylvania employment and training program, state Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie, announced today. The funding to the Northwest Workforce Investment Act for transportation barrier remediation will help St. Benedict Education Center Employment, Advancement and Retention Network participants by removing transportation-related problems that can make it difficult for them to retain jobs. “Our region’s hardworking families are doing everything they can to provide for themselves and their kids,” Harkins said. “But sometimes, the lack of reliable transportation is a huge obstacle to maintaining a job. The funding announced today will help EARN participants with the costs associated with license reinstatement, car repairs or other transportation-related expenses. By breaking down transportation-related barriers, we can help make sure these families have every opportunity to succeed.” Under the program, participants become eligible for transportation assistance once they obtain a minimum 20-hour-a-week job. The grant is part of a package of more than $1 million the Department of Human Services is dispersing to provide greater support to people using locally run Employment, Advancement, and Retention Network or EARN programs. The funding comes from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. Read more

 

Harkins takes oath to begin seventh term

(Jan 01, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 1 – State Rep. Patrick Harkins, D-Erie, was sworn in today to a seventh term in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. The swearing-in ceremony in the House chamber marked the beginning of the 203rd legislative session. The state constitution mandates that the legislature convene at noon on the first Tuesday of January each year. Harkins said this session he will renew his push for legislation to provide Occupational Safety and Health Administration job safety protection to public workers. The need for this legislation was inspired by Jake Schwab, a mechanic with the Erie Metropolitan Transit Authority, who lost his life due to a workplace incident in 2014. "This is a battle I’ll keep fighting on behalf of our public employees while they are on the job," Harkins said. "It is unbelievable to me that public employees have less protection than private employees. "I will also continue to work with state Representatives Ryan Bizzarro, Bob Merski and Curt Sonney to remain vigilant in our continued quest to monitor and assist the Erie School District with its many challenges, including funding. We have had extensive discussions with House Republican leadership and have communicated with the governor about the dire situation facing our students." Additionally, the representative will renew his push for solutions to the heroin and drug issues in the communities, while seeking revenue streams via his involvement on Read more

 

Erie area revitalization projects to receive nearly $2 million in funding

(Dec 17, 2018)

Two dozen community redevelopment projects in the Erie region will benefit from nearly $2 million in tax credits. Read more

 

Rep. Harkins' 2019 Capitol Scenes Calendar

(Dec 03, 2018)

Click on the link above to download Rep. Harkins' 2019 Capitol Scenes Calendar. Read more

 

Heating aid via LIHEAP now open

(Nov 05, 2018)

The 2018-2019 Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program – LIHEAP – is accepting applications for heating assistance grants. LIHEAP offers cash grants of $200 to $1,000 that are sent directly to the utility company to defray heating costs for eligible households, and crisis benefits of up to $600 for households in immediate danger of being without heat. Remember: These are grants and do not have to be repaid. This season’s income guidelines for both LIHEAP cash and crisis grants are $18,210 for an individual, $24,690 for couples and increases for each additional person in the household. Please click here for more LIHEAP information. Please consider visiting my office if you need help filing a LIHEAP application. Besides my office, LIHEAP information is available by: Contacting local County Assistance offices by phone or in person. Calling the LIHEAP Client Helpline at 1-866-857-7095 or PA Relay at 711 for the hearing impaired. Applying online at https://www.compass.state.pa.us . Read more

 

Harkins: Erie City, Iroquois school districts receive safety grants

(Nov 01, 2018)

Both Erie City and the Iroquois school districts have been chosen to receive $25,000 state safety grants. Read more

 

$182,000 to fund coastal projects along Lake Erie

(Oct 19, 2018)

Lake Erie’s coastal region will benefit from five educational and environmental projects thanks to more than $182,000 in state grants. Read more

 

Harkins: Constituent from 1st Legislative District to be recognized for contribution to intellectual disability and autism community

(Oct 18, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 18 – A constituent from the 1 st Legislative District will be recognized on Monday, Oct. 22 by the Pennsylvania Advocacy and Resources for Autism and Intellectual Disability for her contribution to the intellectual disability and autism community, announced state Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie. Hope Noblit, an Erie resident, will be recognized and will receive an award Monday at the organization’s “We Are Worth It” awards ceremony taking place in Harrisburg. Noblit was nominated by Erie Homes for Children and Adults and will receive the Western Region Self Advocate Employee of the Year award. “I’m happy to announce that a resident in our district is making leaps and bounds in contributing to the intellectual disability and autism community,” Harkins said. “The 1 st Legislative District is filled with wonderful, amazing people. Hope Noblit is a testament to that statement, and I’m glad to know she is a positive, hard-working member of our community. Congratulations, Hope!” PAR serves and supports Pennsylvania’s children and adults with autism and intellectual disabilities. They are the largest and most active association of intellectual disability and autism service providers in Pennsylvania. Read more

 

Harkins: More than $450,000 in state funding awarded to 1st Legislative District

(Oct 12, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 12 – State Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie, today announced that the 1 st Legislative District was awarded a $459,217 Recycling Development and Implementation Grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. The grant can be used for a number of things. Funding eligibility is allocated for expanding recycling processing facilities, installing data collection systems on recycling vehicles, continuing or creating curbside recycling programs, developing educational materials or operating leaf compost facilities. “Keeping our communities clean is key to ensuring a healthy environment,” Harkins said. “Our region has always made an effort to support recycling programs and initiatives, and this funding will only enhance our ability to do so. I’m grateful the commonwealth awarded our district this crucial funding that will in part lead to a cleaner, healthier lifestyle in the 1 st Legislative District.” Harkins said the funding will be shared by two municipalities in his district. Erie City was awarded $350,000 . Wesleyville Borough received $109,217 . Nearly 200 county and municipal governments were awarded grants for recycling collections, education and leaf litter pickup. Up to 90 percent of approved recycling program costs are eligible under the grant program. For more information on the grants, visit the DEP’s website . Read more

 

Harkins, Bizzarro announce more than $120,000 in Safe Schools Targeted grants awarded to Erie County

(Oct 04, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 4 – State Reps. Pat Harkins and Ryan Bizzarro, both D-Erie, today announced $122,000 in state funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s competitive Safe Schools Targeted Grant program was awarded to a number of Erie school districts. The funding, geared toward creating a safer environment for students, will be used for numerous initiatives covered under the grant program, including funding for programs to prevent and reduce violent incidents; purchasing security/safety-related equipment; training and compensation for school resource officers; and training and compensation for school police officers, who are directly employed by school districts. “The awarding of these grants to our Erie schools is much-needed, especially during an unfortunate time when schools no longer are viewed as a safe haven for students,” Harkins said. “This funding will help reverse that mindset, providing our schools with the needed resources to ensure students are able to learn in a safe, controlled environment.” Bizzarro added: “School safety is of the utmost importance to the Erie Delegation and legislators across the state. Our students should have the freedom to thrive in an academic setting without the worry of a horrendous event taking place within the school. I’m happy to see the initiative taken on behalf of the commonwealth to provide this crucial funding that will play a large role in protecting our Read more

 

Harkins: $150,000 awarded to 1st Legislative District

(Sep 18, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 18 – A state grant totaling $150,000 was awarded to the 1 st Legislative District, state Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie, announced today. The funding, granted by the Commonwealth Financing Authority, was requested on behalf of Erie City for the renovation of Bayview Park. “I’m happy to announce the funding that will go toward the renovation of Bayview Park,” Harkins said. “The upgrades to the park that will come by way of this funding will not only benefit those who regularly utilize the park’s equipment, but also will leave a lasting impression on first-time visitors.” The project will consist of constructing a walking path; purchasing and installing benches; trash and recycling receptacles; a bike rack; repairing and resurfacing basketball courts; resurfacing the existing tennis court as a multipurpose court; and replacing and moving existing playground equipment to a more central location within the park. Harkins thanked the Commonwealth Financing Authority board for approving the grant. The CFA is a seven-member board created to administer and fund projects from programs that are part of the Economic Stimulus Package passed by the General Assembly in 2004. The entity falls under the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. Read more

 

8/15/18 – Technical Education and Career Readiness – Erie

(Aug 15, 2018)

Materials from House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing hosted by State Rep. Pat Harkins. Read more

 

Harkins, Policy Committee explore tech ed and career readiness

(Aug 15, 2018)

ERIE, Aug. 15 – State Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie, hosted a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing to discuss how students can better prepare themselves for their future through technical education and career readiness at the Erie County Technical School. Harkins, who served as Democratic chairman of the Select Subcommittee on Technical Education and Career Readiness, helped to review secondary career and technical education programs and postsecondary institutions throughout the state, and later developed recommendations in order to enhance programs to meet the needs of future employers. He was joined by state legislators from across the state. “Talking about career and technical education is important because it provides students with skills they need in order to be successful should they chose to attend college or take a different route,” Harkins said. “More than 120 school districts throughout the commonwealth offer career and technical education because they realize it’s imperative in the 21 st century.” The committee heard testimony from Dr. H. Fred Walker, director, Erie County Technical School, Joe Tarasovitch, principal of the Erie County Technical School and Pam Mackowski, the director of career and technical education/adult education from Erie’s Public Schools/Erie High School. Testimony, photos and video from today’s hearing will be available at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee . The meeting is one in Read more

 

Harkins to hold Policy Committee hearing on technical education and career readiness Wednesday in Erie

(Aug 10, 2018)

ERIE, Aug. 10 – In aligning with the House Democratic Caucus’ Plan4PA, state Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie, announced that he will host a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing to discuss technical education and career readiness. The hearing will be held at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 15 at the Erie County Technical School’s cafeteria, located at 8500 Oliver Road. Harkins, who served as Democratic chairman of the Select Subcommittee on Technical Education and Career Readiness, said he requested the hearing because expanding and improving career readiness education is needed in order to meet the demands of the future workforce. Harkins will be joined by a number of state representatives from across the Commonwealth, including Policy Chair Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster. The current agenda is: 9 a.m. Welcome and opening remarks 9:10 a.m. Panelists: Dr. H. Fred Walker , director, Erie County Technical School Joe Tarasovitch, principal, Erie County Technical School Pam Mackowski, director of career and technical education/adult education, Erie’s Public Schools/Erie High School 10 a.m. Closing remarks The meeting is one in a series being held across the state on the House Democrats’ Plan4PA that includes putting people first, good jobs, quality schools and fair taxes. Visit www.plan4pa.com for additional information about the Plan4PA and www.pahouse.com/policycommittee for Policy Committee Read more

 

Harkins: Schools awarded grants for fresh fruits and vegetables

(Jul 31, 2018)

Grants have been awarded to the Erie City School District and the Iroquois School District, in order to provide students with fresh fruits and vegetables during the school day, announced state Rep. Pat Harkins, D-Erie. The 2018-19 grants are funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, whose goal is to expand the variety of fruits and vegetables in schools by increasing consumption among students with the hope of impacting their present and future health. “When children eat healthy it benefits their overall well-being,” Harkins said. “These grants are essential in providing students with good nutrition that will hopefully lead them to make healthier choices leading into adulthood.” Below is a list of schools with the amount they received: Diehl Elementary School $27,639. Edison Elementary School$28,471.50. GECAC Community Charter School $18,648. Jefferson Elementary School $26,473.50. McKinley Elementary School $30,469.50. Iroquois Elementary School$38,073. The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program first started in the commonwealth in 2004 and is now in every state. Schools must have a free and reduced meal eligibility of 50 percent or more in order to qualify for the grants. Nearly 200 elementary schools across Pennsylvania were selected to receive the grants that total almost $5 million. Read more

 

Harkins: New state spending plan would bolster career training and workforce development without increasing taxes

(Jun 20, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 20 – State Rep. Patrick Harkins, D-Erie, announced today that he voted in favor of the state’s new $32.7 billion spending plan, citing the bill’s emphasis on strengthening education and workforce development while also addressing school safety needs. “The bill the House passed today would fund educational, career training and workforce development resources while at the same time providing the critical funding needed to enhance school safety in the commonwealth,” Harkins said. “I have been emphasizing the importance of securing our schools for months, and now, with legislation and dollars, we can make that happen. “At the same time, the bill would accomplish key goals without imposing any new taxes or fees on residents, and it would allow us to replenish the state’s Rainy Day Fund so that we’re prepared to address future needs that may arise. “It may not be a perfect bill, but it would address some of the commonwealth’s most pressing needs without imposing the burden of added taxes, and for that reason, I voted for it. The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration. Read more

 

Harkins: Qualified Opportunity Zones will breathe new life into Erie communities

(Jun 18, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 18 – State Rep. Patrick Harkins, D-Erie, announced today that five areas in the 1st Legislative District, which he represents, have been approved by the U.S. Treasury Department as Qualified Opportunity Zones. The Erie communities were nominated under a federal program that gives private investors tax incentives for investing capital gains in distressed, low-income communities. “I’m excited by the prospect of better jobs and housing opportunities that private investment can bring,” Harkins said. “Infusion of capital can stimulate the kind of development that will breathe new life into these low-income communities and open doors for the hardworking families living there.” Under the program – which is administered by the U.S. Treasury Department under the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act – states nominate a certain percentage of census tracts as Qualified Opportunity Zones. Private investors receive tax benefits for investing capital gains in these areas and adjacent tracts. Pennsylvania had 1,197 low-income census tracts eligible for Qualified Opportunity Zone status and was given the opportunity to nominate 25 percent, or 300 tracts. In April, Gov. Tom Wolf announced that he had made the nominations after gathering input from various sources across the state and examining where areas of need intersected with investment opportunities. Read more

 

Harkins: Grant will help teachers bring industry insights to classroom

(Jun 15, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 15 – A $50,000 “Teacher in the Workplace” grant will help Erie county educators strengthen their curricula with information about real-world business and industry trends, opportunities and needs, according to state Rep. Patrick Harkins, D-Erie. “This funding will allow teachers direct access to local businesses, where they can learn about the latest in-demand careers and the skills that will help students master them,” Harkins said. “Teachers can then carry this cutting-edge information back to students. When it comes to business and industry, there’s no substitute for learning based on real-world knowledge.” The grant, which was awarded to the NWPA Teacher in the Workplace workforce development board, is one of 48 grants, totaling more than $2 million, to programs statewide. The grants are funded through federal money made available from the Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act. Read more

 

Bizzarro, Harkins: Grant will help preserve region’s rich Civil War history
Jan 11, 2019

Harkins, Merski: $157,160 grant will allow students to explore career pathways in manufacturing, health care
Jan 10, 2019

Harkins: $141,900 grant will help working families with transportation needs
Jan 09, 2019

Harkins takes oath to begin seventh term
Jan 01, 2019

Erie area revitalization projects to receive nearly $2 million in funding
Dec 17, 2018

Rep. Harkins' 2019 Capitol Scenes Calendar
Dec 03, 2018

Heating aid via LIHEAP now open
Nov 05, 2018

Harkins: Erie City, Iroquois school districts receive safety grants
Nov 01, 2018

$182,000 to fund coastal projects along Lake Erie
Oct 19, 2018

Harkins: Constituent from 1st Legislative District to be recognized for contribution to intellectual disability and autism community
Oct 18, 2018

Harkins: More than $450,000 in state funding awarded to 1st Legislative District
Oct 12, 2018

Harkins, Bizzarro announce more than $120,000 in Safe Schools Targeted grants awarded to Erie County
Oct 04, 2018

Harkins: $150,000 awarded to 1st Legislative District
Sep 18, 2018

8/15/18 – Technical Education and Career Readiness – Erie
Aug 15, 2018

Harkins, Policy Committee explore tech ed and career readiness
Aug 15, 2018

Harkins to hold Policy Committee hearing on technical education and career readiness Wednesday in Erie
Aug 10, 2018

Harkins: Schools awarded grants for fresh fruits and vegetables
Jul 31, 2018

Harkins: New state spending plan would bolster career training and workforce development without increasing taxes
Jun 20, 2018

Harkins: Qualified Opportunity Zones will breathe new life into Erie communities
Jun 18, 2018

Harkins: Grant will help teachers bring industry insights to classroom
Jun 15, 2018