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Women Leading the 175th

Reforms needed to address Charter Crisis

(Mar 02, 2021)

HARRISBURG, March 2 – The charter school crisis has only worsened through the COVID-19 pandemic and a public hearing hosted by state Rep. Mary Isaacson examined the statewide impact on public schools. "Our Pennsylvania Constitution requires that we provide for and maintain a thorough and efficient public education system," said Isaacson, D-Phila. "That constitutional mandate doesn't disappear when there's a global pandemic. COVID-19 has had a huge impact on school districts' budgets throughout our commonwealth, presenting new challenges to meet the constitutional mandate. Being able to have a discussion now with administrators on the front lines of dealing with the impact of COVID-19 and the charter school funding crisis was an important step in working toward solutions." The committee heard testimony from Uri Monson, CFO for the Philadelphia School District, and superintendents statewide including Dr. Shane Hotchkiss, Bermudian Springs School District and chair, Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators Legislative Committee; Ken Berlin, Wattsburg School District, Erie County; Richard Scaletta, General Mclane School District, Erie County; Dr. Brian Bliss, Solanco School District, Lancaster County; David Burkett, Fannett Metal School District, Franklin County; and Jim Estep, Mifflin County School District. “Testifiers were economically and geographically diverse, yet they could agree that the current approach Read more

 

Kinkead, Isaacson: Bill would enable students to easily transfer from community college to PASSHE

(Mar 01, 2021)

HARRISBURG, March 1 -- State Reps. Emily Kinkead and Mary Isaacson have introduced a measure that would make it easier for community college students to transfer to a Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education university. Kinkead, D-Allegheny, said more and more students are beginning their higher education careers at a community college due to increasing costs. To help these students obtain their bachelor’s degree in a timely manner, her bill would provide guaranteed PASSHE university admission for community college students who complete an approved associate degree for transfer program. “Each year, roughly 300,000 students begin their higher education journey at a community college before transferring to another university to finish their degree,” Kinkead said. “Our state has made significant strides to help streamline that transfer process, and this legislation would make that process even easier without requiring students to take on crippling financial debt. Community colleges are critical in making higher education accessible and affordable to the most students, especially as we work to address equity in education and economic opportunity. This program has been quite successful in California and I’m confident our state can reap similar rewards, encouraging students to achieve baccalaureate degrees and improve overall access to cost-effective higher education.” “Every college student’s pathway to higher education Read more

 

COVID/Charter Crisis focus of Tuesday’s virtual House Democratic Policy Committee hearing

(Mar 01, 2021)

HARRISBURG, March 1 -- House Democratic Policy Committee Vice Chair Mary Isaacson, D-Philadelphia, will host a virtual hearing to discuss the charter school crisis exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The hearing will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 2 . To view, the media and public can tune in to www.pahouse.com/policycommittee or the committee’s Facebook page -- @PADemPolicy. Media inquiries may be submitted via email to policy@pahouse.net . Isaacson will be joined by committee Chairman Ryan Bizzarro and Democratic Policy Committee members to examine the impact charter school enrollment during the COVID-19 pandemic has had on public school budgets. The meeting is one in a series collecting information that will help Pennsylvania better recover from COVID-19 and improve access to quality education. Read more

 

Isaacson leads discussion on protecting the Delaware River Basin

(Feb 22, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 22 – At today’s House Democratic Policy Committee Hearing, state Rep. Mary Isaacson highlighted the importance of the Delaware River Basin and Pennsylvania’s role in preservation efforts. Isaacson, who represents the River Wards along the Delaware River from Old Richmond to Queen Village, highlighted the state’s responsibility to fully fund its commitment to the basin. “Pennsylvania has the most square mileage of any state in the basin. While the agreed upon funding contribution was $893,000 annually, the state is only fulfilling $217,000 of that commitment. We must do better. Water quality, recreation and economic development in the region depends on it,” Isaacson explained. The committee heard testimony from Kristen Bowman Kavanagh, deputy executive director of the Delaware River Basin Commission, Dr. Ron MacGillivray, senior environmental toxicologist of the Delaware River Basin Commission, and Beth Brown, director of the Delaware Watershed Program for the Pennsylvania Audubon. “Efforts to defund the Delaware River Basin Commission have greatly impacted their monitoring abilities and this ultimately impacts keeping the waterways clean. Healthy waterways can boost local economies. They attract businesses, recreational users and we have to do our part to give the commission the resources they need to carry out these functions,” state Rep. Ryan Bizzarro, the Policy Committee chairman, said. Read more

 

Protecting the Delaware River Basin focus of House Democratic Policy Committee hearing Monday

(Feb 19, 2021)

HA RRISBURG, Feb. 19 -- At the request of state Rep. Mary Isaacson, the PA House Democratic Policy Committee will host a virtual hearing to discuss the Delaware River Basin and the value it brings beyond the region. The hearing will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Feb. 22 and can be viewed at www.pahouse.com/policy or the committee’s Facebook page -- @PADemPolicy. The public and media are encouraged to tune in and can submit questions to policy@pahouse.net . Chairman Ryan Bizzarro, Isaacson and members of the Democratic Policy Committee will discuss the health of the Delaware River Basin, the resources and economic activity it generates, and state and federal efforts to improve water quality. Isaacson serves the 175th Legislative District representing the River Wards along the Delaware River from Old Richmond to Queen Village and has taken an active role in preserving and enhancing the economic and environmental vitality of the Delaware River Basin. Read more

 

State Grant Programs Now Open for Applications: Feb. 16 Update

(Feb 18, 2021)

STATE GRANT PROGRAMS NOW OPEN FOR APPLICATIONS: Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Hemp Promotion, Education and Export Promotion Matching Grant Program (Funding Source: General Fund) Who May Apply : Nonprofit agricultural product promotion and marketing organizations. Use : Projects aimed at increasing sales, export or consumer awareness of Pennsylvania hemp products. Eligible projects may include regional or national promotion. Funds : Reimbursement grants up to 50% of project costs. The minimum matching grant is $1,000. A total of $253,000 will be available statewide. Application Deadline : March 5 More Information : See the February 13, 2021, PA Bulletin at Pennsylvania Bulletin (pacodeandbulletin.gov) . Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture: Federal Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (Funding Source: Federal Fund ing ) Who May Apply : State and local organizations, producer associations, academia, community-based organizations, and other stakeholders. Use : Projects that will increase visibility and competitiveness of the state’s horticultural specialty crops including fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, culinary herbs and spices, medicinal plants and nursery crops. Funds : Requests may be made for a minimum of $20,000, provided the amount reasonably represents the cost of the Read more

 

Philadelphia House Democratic Delegation responds to allegations against Philly Fighting COVID

(Jan 28, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 28 – The Philadelphia House Democratic Delegation sent a letter today to Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley demanding answers to the COVID-19 vaccine problems between the city and Philly Fighting COVID, the organization tasked with administering vaccines to Philadelphia residents, according to the delegation’s chairman, state Rep. Jason Dawkins, D-Phila. “This is a completely unacceptable turn of events,” Dawkins said. “The people of Philadelphia have relied on the city to ensure they are able to access vaccines in this critical time, and if this organization is who was designated to do the job, not only did they fail to vaccinate but also failed the people of the city by then compromising their personal information. What’s worse, to then learn the organization’s CEO was allegedly taking vaccine home. If this is true, it is completely unacceptable. How did this organization even get chosen to administer the city’s plan? It is disturbing and upsetting, and answers must be given. We all have a right to know.” “People in my district are struggling to get the vaccine while this guy is taking them home,” said state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila. “I’m not a lawyer, but it seems to me that what he did was illegal, and he needs to be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.” Kenyatta represents the 181st Legislative Read more

 

Troubleshooting PUA claims: How to reopen/reactivate a PUA claim

(Jan 28, 2021)

How to reopen/reactivate a PUA claim : Log in to your dashboard Select “File for Weekly Benefits” Then select “File Your Weekly Certification to Continue Your Claim” You will see the message “You currently have a claim established however it is inactive.” Click on “here.” It will seem as if you are opening a new claim. The system knows you are only attempting to reopen the claim you already have established. Click Next. You will see the Welcome to Pennsylvania’s Pandemic Unemployment Portal Page. Click next. The next eight pages are pre-populated based on your initial claim information. You will click next after verifying the information is correct on each page. If it is not correct, you should make updates at this time. Note: This includes things such as your email, address, date of birth, education information and employment status. You will also be asked the COVID questions. PLEASE NOTE THAT FOR THE MAJOR DISASTER INFORMATION QUESTION YOU SHOULD SELECT COVID -19 NOT COVID 19 -2 If you reported that you are self-employed, the system will ask for you 2020 wages. This is an error. You should enter all 0s for those wages. You will also need to answer if you have worked since you last filed for weeks. If you have worked, you must click the “I have worked since my last Read more

 

Isaacson takes oath for second term

(Jan 05, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 5 – State Rep. Mary Isaacson took the oath of office at the state Capitol today to begin her second term representing the 175th Legislative District in Philadelphia. Read more

 

Isaacson announces $14 million in grants for Philadelphia projects

(Dec 28, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Dec. 28 - – State Rep. Mary Isaacson, D-Phila., today announced that $14 million in state funding will go to organizations in the 175 th Legislative District for improvement projects. “I am so happy to be able to secure this funding for these many worthwhile projects in our district,” Isaacson said. “Everything from historical sites to schools to businesses that employ residents here, these projects and the organizations undertaking them will touch the lives of so many people in the 175 th district. I’m thankful the governor is keeping grant programs like this on track when we need them the most.” Grants will go to the following projects: $3 million for Biomeme. $2 million for Independence Historical Trust. $500,000 for Fishtown Library and Recreation Center. $1 million for Equal Justice Center. $2 million for Reading Terminal Market. $500,000 for Restoring Pennsylvania's Birthplace: Carpenters' Hall. $500,000 for Walnut Street Theater. $1 million for Wills Eye Hospital. $500,000 for Roman Catholic High School. $2 million for Imvax Cell Immunotherapy Production Center. $1 million for the National Liberty Museum. The grant money is part of the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, a commonwealth grant program that is administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and Read more

 

State lawmakers call for end to family deportations from Berks ICE facility

(Dec 02, 2020)

Legislators ask for release of families, children in face of COVID pandemic, unsanitary conditions Read more

 

Statement on police shooting death of Walter Wallace, Jr.

(Oct 28, 2020)

The death of Walter Wallace, Jr. is not only a tragedy and a failure of our criminal justice system, but an indictment of our lack of access to mental health services and treatment. I offer my most sincere condolences to his family and loved ones. I join other elected officials in calling for a thorough investigation into the death of Walter Wallace, Jr. and the events leading up to his death. I also continue to call for further use of de-escalation techniques instead of lethal force and to demand that police officers are not the only first responders present when mental health issues arise. I have been in constant communication with local and state officials as well as the police department. While the investigation into the full scope of what happened on Monday, Oct. 26 is underway, we are asking that the people of Philadelphia act to facilitate justice and not add to the heavy sorrow Mr. Wallace's family is experiencing. Peaceful protest should never be discouraged, but the violence, looting and destruction of our communities along the Riverwards these past two evenings has nothing to do with demanding justice for Walter Wallace, Jr. and his family. We must honor his family’s calls to stop the chaos. I know that communities are in pain, as yet another black man’s life was lost right in our own City and calls across the country for justice have still gone unanswered. We must join together and continue to fight for sweeping reforms so that this never Read more

 

The Patience To Ensure Every Single Vote is Counted

(Oct 16, 2020)

Pennsylvania will be a key battleground state in this election, and we all can agree: every citizen 18 years of age and older has the right to vote and do so safely this November, whether that be in-person or by mail. Every vote will be counted. Every vote matters, and it is both our democratic and civic duty to shape our future by exercising our right to vote. Because of COVID-19, experts anticipate a large number of mail-in ballots, which take time to count. In fact, we saw this in our primary election. This means that instead of the projected winners we are all used to seeing reported on election night, it is very likely that the results of the general election will not be known in time for the 11 p.m. news – and there is no legal requirement they have to be known on Election Day. It’s vital to be patient and allow every vote to be verified and counted as we have throughout American history. Until those votes are finished being tallied, we must respect the integrity of our democratic process and wait patiently for the final certified results. 2020 will be an election like no other, with projected historic turnout and public health challenges. Every vote cast must be counted, and the democratic will of the majority must be respected. This is the cornerstone of American democracy. Register to vote. If you choose to vote by mail, apply for your ballot as soon as you can and, when it arrives, fill it out and return it right away – Read more

 

Sept. 18, Email: Weekly update from Harrisburg and home!

(Sep 18, 2020)

Sept. 18, 2020 email. Read more

 

Sept. 11, Email: Weekly update from Harrisburg and home!

(Sep 11, 2020)

Sept. 11, 2020 email. Read more

 

Burgos, Hohenstein and Isaacson join advocates to promote legislation to help undocumented individuals apply for a driver's license

(Sep 08, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 8 – State Rep. Danilo Burgos, along with state Reps. Joe Hohenstein, Mary Isaacson, all D-Phila., today joined the Driving PA Forward Coalition at the Saint Francis of Assisi Church to highlight their legislation to help undocumented individuals apply for a driver's license. “Our bill is about making Pennsylvania roads safer by requiring that all residents pass the mandatory written and vision examinations and road test to obtain a driver’s license,” Burgos said. “An additional benefit is that the revenue generated from application costs to PennDOT and purchases on car insurance policies would greatly benefit Pennsylvania’s economy -- a much needed relief as our economy struggles to gain stability in the wake of the pandemic.” Concurring with Burgos, Hohenstein pointed to immigrants comprising a substantial population of Pennsylvania’s workforce, especially as essential workers during the pandemic. "It’s not an exaggeration to say that immigrants have a large role in keeping our country running," Hohenstein said. "One in six people fulfilling essential roles during the pandemic is an immigrant. Many are our doctors, nurses and healthcare providers. Others are farm workers who sow, tend and harvest our food. Others prepare and serve us our food. All should have access to an official driver's license from the state in order to continue Read more

 

Sept. 3, Email: Please, opt in to keep receiving email updates from me

(Sep 03, 2020)

Sept. 3, 2020 email. Read more

 

Thomas Jefferson University wins grant funding from state in race for novel coronavirus vaccine

(Aug 27, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA , Aug. 27 – State Rep. Mary Isaacson said she is excited that Thomas Jefferson University will continue its efforts to create a COVID-19 vaccine with $508,480 in state funding announced today by Gov. Tom Wolf. According to Isaacson, T homas Jefferson University was awarded funding from COVID-19 Vaccines, Treatments, and Therapies project funds available to support the rapid advancement of vaccines, treatments and therapies by qualified biotechnology entities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The project is part of $10 million in funding awarded by Wolf to 23 entities in concert with the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. “I am thrilled to see a quality research university like Thomas Jefferson University be given the opportunity to advance its efforts to fight a global pandemic that has dramatically changed our lives this year,” Isaacson said. “As the coronavirus began its spread, Thomas Jefferson sprang into action, working with researchers and manufacturers to join in the fight for a safe and effective vaccine that will need to be available to billions of people across the globe. “I congratulate our talented researchers at Thomas Jefferson for winning this project funding and thank Governor Wolf for his leadership in getting project funding like this into very capable hands.” Projects awarded funding through DCED include those that will study the use of cancer medications Read more

 

GOP leaders should move legislation to stop eviction proceedings on working people during a state of emergency

(Aug 27, 2020)

As House lawmakers prepare to return to voting session on Tuesday, Sept. 1, it’s a good time to take stock. The legislature was able to accomplish a lot and in bipartisan cooperation in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. We worked together for several weeks to set up financial programs, resources, and health and safety protections for people, businesses and our healthcare infrastructure. Now, not so much. As the summer wears on, bipartisan cooperation has given way to political posturing, effectively shutting down any kind of additional supports and protections for the people we as a collective body are meant to serve. And, that has put us on the eve of another crisis. In a few short days, scores of working people who lost their jobs as result of the COVID-19 pandemic and others will have a new burden to bear. Gov. Tom Wolf’s moratorium on evictions is set to expire on Monday, Aug. 31, and he is prohibited from renewing it with executive powers beyond that date. The legislature can and must step in. Legislation ( H.B. 2404 ) I have introduced with Allegheny County Democratic state Rep. Summer Lee is critical for giving working families a measure of security in the continuing COVID-19 health crisis. It can be voted on at any time. The only force stopping it is the majority party in Harrisburg. Under the legislation, people who are unemployed, separated from their employment or unable to find employment when an epidemic or Read more

 

Isaacson announces grant for Penn Treaty School

(Aug 25, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 25 – Penn Treaty School has been awarded a grant to improve educational services for its students during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to state Rep. Mary Isaacson, who represents the Fishtown neighborhood in which the school resides. Isaacson said Penn Treaty is receiving $61,022 in Governor’s Emergency Education Relief program funds, which are designed to improve educational services for students at schools designated for Additional Targeted Support and Improvement under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act authorizes governors to determine the educational use of these funds. “Schools across the city are working very hard to set up online learning for the start of the school year with an eye toward in-person instruction later on, and additional funding is crucial in helping our schools achieve their goals,” Isaacson said. “It is especially critical for schools that are identified as needing extra support to ensure the needs of their students are being met. I am grateful to see this funding going to the Wolf Pack at this critical time.” Grants were calculated based on elements of the federal Title I, Part A formula, including the number of economically disadvantaged students and other school enrollment data. More information on the grants is available here . Read more

 

Reforms needed to address Charter Crisis
Mar 02, 2021

Kinkead, Isaacson: Bill would enable students to easily transfer from community college to PASSHE
Mar 01, 2021

COVID/Charter Crisis focus of Tuesday’s virtual House Democratic Policy Committee hearing
Mar 01, 2021

Isaacson leads discussion on protecting the Delaware River Basin
Feb 22, 2021

Protecting the Delaware River Basin focus of House Democratic Policy Committee hearing Monday
Feb 19, 2021

State Grant Programs Now Open for Applications: Feb. 16 Update
Feb 18, 2021

Philadelphia House Democratic Delegation responds to allegations against Philly Fighting COVID
Jan 28, 2021

Troubleshooting PUA claims: How to reopen/reactivate a PUA claim
Jan 28, 2021

Isaacson takes oath for second term
Jan 05, 2021

Isaacson announces $14 million in grants for Philadelphia projects
Dec 28, 2020

State lawmakers call for end to family deportations from Berks ICE facility
Dec 02, 2020

Statement on police shooting death of Walter Wallace, Jr.
Oct 28, 2020

The Patience To Ensure Every Single Vote is Counted
Oct 16, 2020

Sept. 18, Email: Weekly update from Harrisburg and home!
Sep 18, 2020

Sept. 11, Email: Weekly update from Harrisburg and home!
Sep 11, 2020

Burgos, Hohenstein and Isaacson join advocates to promote legislation to help undocumented individuals apply for a driver's license
Sep 08, 2020

Sept. 3, Email: Please, opt in to keep receiving email updates from me
Sep 03, 2020

Thomas Jefferson University wins grant funding from state in race for novel coronavirus vaccine
Aug 27, 2020

GOP leaders should move legislation to stop eviction proceedings on working people during a state of emergency
Aug 27, 2020

Isaacson announces grant for Penn Treaty School
Aug 25, 2020