Matzie announces more than $261,000 in fire grants

(Oct 09, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Oct. 9 – State Rep. Rob Matzie announced that 11 fire companies in his district will receive $261,012 in state grants for operational expenses incurred as a result of COVID-19. Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, said the grants awarded by the Office of State Fire Commissioner are needed to offset the additional financial burdens created by the pandemic. “Even under the best of times, our fire and rescue workers are forced to operate on shoestring budgets, but the pandemic has complicated things a hundred-fold,” Matzie said. “Rescue operations involve a higher degree of risk, and first responders are facing situations requiring additional protective equipment and other resources. At the same time, restrictions on social gatherings have dried up sources of fundraising. “Securing these grants should help ease the burden on these frontline heroes so they can continue their lifesaving work while staying safe themselves.” Matzie said the following fire companies will receive the following amounts: Allegheny County Leetsdale Fire Department - $23,151. Beaver County Aliquippa Bureau of Fire - $24,247. Ambridge Volunteer Fire Department - $24,110. Baden Volunteer Fire Department - $25,205. Conway Volunteer Fire Department - $23,973. Economy Volunteer Fireman’s Association - Read more

 

Matzie: House unanimously adopts resolution designating October 2020 as ‘Agent Orange Awareness Month’

(Sep 30, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 30 – The House today unanimously adopted state Rep. Rob Matzie’s resolution designating October 2020 as “ Agent Orange Awareness Month” in Pennsylvania. Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, said he introduced H.R. 1019 to keep the spotlight on a critical health issue affecting thousands of Pennsylvanian veterans. “In addition to brutal combat conditions, U.S. troops in Vietnam faced an equally deadly but invisible hazard that would wreak havoc on veterans and their families for decades – exposure to Agent Orange,” Matzie said. “The herbicide, which U.S. forces sprayed to eliminate cover and destroy crops, was contaminated with the deadly chemical dioxin. “After the war, the toll of Agent Orange manifested itself in severe skin rashes, cancers, diabetes, birth defects and a litany of other health issues. Passage of the Agent Orange Act in 1991 relaxed proof requirements for certain illnesses presumed to be caused by the chemical, although some conditions with a suspected link – including the form of aggressive brain cancer that killed John McCain – are still not covered. “Vietnam veterans make up the largest group of veterans in Pennsylvania today. Nearly half a million served during the Vietnam War era, and an estimated 172,000 directly participated in the war . We owe it to the thousands who have died or suffered Read more

 

Matzie: House unanimously adopts ‘Rail Safety Week’ resolution

(Sep 29, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 29 – The House today unanimously adopted state Rep. Rob Matzie’s resolution to raise awareness about the high toll of deaths and injuries from train collisions. Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, said he introduced H.B. 1002 – designating Sept. 21-27 as “Rail Safety Week” in Pennsylvania – to call attention to a preventable hazard that kills and injures too many motorists and pedestrians each year. “Unfortunately, Pennsylvania again this year made the top 15 list of states with the greatest number of highway-rail grade crossing collisions and pedestrian trespassing casualties,” Matzie said. “Perhaps most disturbing, the commonwealth ranks fourth in the nation when it comes to pedestrian trespass deaths and injuries, with 29 deaths and 23 injuries in 2019. That’s an increase from the year before. “People who are walking at night or distracted while on their cell phones may easily fail to appreciate the degree of danger near tracks. For example, pedestrians may not realize that trains overhang tracks by at least three feet in all directions, with loose straps from rail cars extending even further so even if pedestrians are in the right-of-way next to the tracks, they can still be hit. “It’s also important to remember that it can take a mile or more for a train to stop, so that by the time a locomotive engineer sees someone on the tracks, Read more

 

Matzie: Nearly $316,000 to fund new Ambridge playground, spray park

(Sep 24, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Sept. 24 – A $315,528 grant from the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources will fund a major Ambridge playground project including installation of a spray park with water features, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the funding – awarded through DCNR’s 2020 Community Conservation Partnerships Program – will allow development to move forward on the Henning Street project. “This is big for Ambridge and big for our kids,” Matzie said. “Bringing home this kind of money is one of the most important aspects of being a state legislator. “The plans have been in place for a while, but this funding was needed to go forward. Now the borough can move ahead with the project. It will have a new spray park, a concession stand and new playground equipment with safety surfacing. It’s going to be really exciting. “Making sure our communities get the funding they need for projects like this is what I work hard at every single day. Families will have the opportunity to spend time and have fun together here, in Ambridge.” Matzie said the project will also include ADA access, landscaping, and other site improvements. The grant is part of a package of approximately $23.4 million in funding to 158 projects statewide. C2P2 grants fund planning, acquisition and development of public Read more

 

Matzie: Grants will ensure elementary school students have access to fresh fruits and vegetables

(Sep 22, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Sept. 22 – Grant funding to two Beaver County elementary schools will ensure students have access to fresh fruits and vegetables for the nutrition they need to stay healthy and succeed in the classroom, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the funding awarded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program includes grants to Highland Elementary School in the Ambridge Area School District and Rochester Elementary School in the Rochester Area School District. “There’s no question that students need a healthy, nutritious diet to learn and thrive,” Matzie said. “Unfortunately, with the pandemic affecting household budgets and store inventories, some families have found it more difficult to keep fresh produce on the table on a regular basis. “Securing this funding will help ensure young students have reliable access to the nutrition proven to promote focus, mental acuity, memory retention and other building blocks of academic success – regardless of household budget or other obstacles.” Matzie said the funding, which was not broken down by district, is part of a package of more than $7 million in grants awarded to 230 elementary schools. Under the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, schools will receive between $50 and $75 per student, based on the federal allocation to the state. Funding Read more

 

Rep. Matzie's Summer 2020 Newsletter

(Sep 21, 2020)

Rep. Matzie's Summer 2020 Newsletter Read more

 

Matzie introduces bill to trace COVID-19 through wastewater

(Sep 18, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 18 – A bill introduced today by state Rep. Rob Matzie would establish a more effective way to trace and detect COVID-19 before it spreads by creating a system of testing for the virus in wastewater. Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, said his H.B. 2883 would establish the Targeted Outbreak Detection Act, creating a wastewater-testing program that is both cost-effective and more efficient than traditional methods of tracking the virus. “While temperature checks and crowd-size limits are helpful in slowing the spread of COVID-19, these techniques are not practical in the long term,” Matzie said. “Testing for the virus in wastewater would allow health authorities to know if the virus is present before people feel ill and inadvertently spread it, providing a critical way to contain clusters before major outbreaks occur.” Matzie said implementing COVID-19 wastewater tracing would be feasible and relatively simple because testing resources are already in place. “Most wastewater treatment systems are already required to perform routine testing of water samples,” Matzie said. “Sending a portion of those samples, on request, to a designated laboratory to test for the presence of COVID-19 would establish a critical early warning system that would arm health authorities with the data they need to better protect our communities.” Matzie said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is Read more

 

Matzie: $175,000 grant awarded for Walker Park stream restoration

(Sep 15, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Sept. 15 – A $175,000 grant from the Commonwealth Financing Authority will fund sediment removal and stream restoration for Little Sewickley Creek in Leet Township’s Walker Park, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the grant – administered by the CFA and funded by the Allegheny County Gaming Economic Development Tourism Fund – will enhance one of the area’s most beloved natural resources “Little Sewickley Creek is a natural gem,” Matzie said. “For decades, it has been designated as a ‘high quality’ trout stocking fishery – one of few area streams to receive that designation. In addition to fishing, the creek draws the community to Walker Park for hiking, community projects and teaching kids about biodiversity and the beauty of nature. “Recently, sedimentation was identified as an issue affecting the stream’s water quality. This grant is going to help fund removal of sediment runoff and restore the existing stream to ensure that this area treasure is preserved for decades to come.” Matzie said a $100,000 grant to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank will benefit the entire region by funding enhancements – new sidewalks, parking and handicap accessibility ramps – for the food bank’s facility. Read more

 

Matzie: Nearly $193,000 in funding will bring targeted support for students

(Aug 25, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 25 – Four grants totaling $192,596 will fund targeted efforts to bolster education for underperforming students in Beaver County schools, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the Governor's Emergency Education Relief funding will allow educators to target support for students most at risk. “Securing this funding is going to help level the playing field for students of historically underserved schools who might otherwise face the risk of falling behind,” Matzie said. “It’s an important investment under any circumstances, but it’s even more critical now – as the pandemic poses challenges to educators and stretches resources – to ensure all students keep pace.” Matzie said the following funding was awarded: Aliquippa School District, Aliquippa Junior Senior High School – $59,457. Ambridge Area School District, Ambridge Area High School – $56,525. Beaver Valley Intermediate Unit – $44,583. Freedom Area School District, Freedom Area Middle School – $32,031. The funding is part of a package of approximately $17 million to help 220 local education agencies including school districts, to improve educational services for approximately 180,000 students at schools designated for Additional Targeted Support and Improvement under the federal Every Read more

 

Matzie: Nearly $125,000 in funding to ensure special needs students continue learning

(Aug 20, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 20 – Grant funding of $124,872 to eight area school districts and schools will help ensure Beaver County students with special needs do not fall behind because of the pandemic, announced state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny. “Suspended classroom learning during the pandemic has been difficult for all students, but students with special needs – who benefit greatly from in-person learning – are particularly vulnerable to losing skills,” Matzie said. “This funding is going to help level the playing field by giving teachers resources to provide real-time learning and other supports to keep these students learning and thriving.” Matzie said the districts will receive the following funding: Aliquippa School District – $14,211 Ambridge Area School District – $36,011 Baden Academy Charter School – $5,000 Central Valley School District – $14,139 Freedom Area School District – $14,146 Hopewell Area School District – $17,087 Quaker Valley School District – $19,278 Rochester Area School District – $5,000 The funding is part of a package of $20 million to 678 local school districts and other local education agencies. The sources include $15 million in Governor’s Emergency Education Relief funding and $5 million from the Department of Read more

 

Matzie participates in PIAA Oversight Committee hearing on fall youth sports

(Aug 18, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 18 – State Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, issued the following statement today after attending a hearing on high school athletics with Robert Lombardi, director of the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association. “Today, as a member of the PIAA Oversight Committee, I participated in a joint House and Senate hearing regarding high school athletics. PIAA Executive Director Robert Lombardi provided testimony and answered questions from committee members as to the planning and preparation for the upcoming fall sports season during the COVID-19 pandemic.” ATTN EDITORS AND ASSIGNMENT DESKS: Video of the Q&A is available here. Read more

 

Matzie: $1.1 million to fund multiple sanitation system upgrades for area

(Aug 17, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 17 -- Six grants totaling $1.1 million from the state Commonwealth Financing Authority will fund critical repairs and upgrades to stormwater and sewer systems serving area communities, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. “Investments in our stormwater and sewer infrastructure are essential for keeping clean water flowing to our communities,” Matzie said. “Many of these structures are aging, and system failures can interrupt service, burden taxpayers and even pose health dangers. Securing this funding will keep this critical infrastructure functioning efficiently and help prevent more costly repairs in the future, saving taxpayer dollars and safeguarding community health.” Matzie said the projects funded by the PA Small Water and Sewer Program include: $300,000 to the Creswell Heights Joint Authority for emergency gas generators at its treatment plant and two booster stations to address water outages caused by power failures. Total project cost is $467,955, with $70,194 committed. $210,000 to the Economy Borough Municipal Authority for trenchless rehabilitation of the borough’s sanitary sewer system for the Sunset Hills neighborhood. Total project cost is $500,000, with $75,000 committed. $200,000 to Harmony Township for removal and replacement of the deteriorating storm and sewer system along the 8 th Street. Total project cost Read more

 

Matzie: More than $1.8 million in funding will combat homelessness, improve opportunities for vulnerable residents

(Aug 14, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 14 -- Area residents struggling with homelessness, addiction and other obstacles will have some new opportunities for affordable, accessible housing and related services thanks to $1.84 million in funding to several regional organizations, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the funding – administered by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency through the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund – will serve some of the area’s most vulnerable. “Securing this funding will help restore quality of life to residents who are struggling because of the pandemic, opioid addiction, violence and other hardships,” Matzie said. “This will bring help for single moms who have escaped domestic violence and are working to become self-sufficient; for residents with disabilities needing accessible, affordable housing; and for people who are homeless and struggling with opioid addiction. “This is the kind of investment that sends a message to the most vulnerable in our community that there is hope on the horizon and that we will not forget them.” Matzie said the projects funded include: Allegheny County Department of Human Services: Home 2020 -- $1 million. Allegheny County Department of Human Services: Mobility Counseling Program -- $300,000. United Way of Southern Pennsylvania: Housing Read more

 

Matzie: Nearly $47,000 to Freedom Area School District to ensure online learning

(Aug 07, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 7 – A $46,900 grant to the Freedom Area School District will ensure students have the resources they need to access online learning, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the funding – administered by the state Department of Education through the Continuity of Education and Equity Grant program – will ensure no student gets left behind when it comes to remote learning. “While online learning can’t replace the benefits of actual classroom experience, it does offer an important way to keep our kids engaged and learning during the pandemic,” Matzie said. “Unfortunately, lack of access to technology or the internet threatens to sideline some students. We can’t let that happen – access to good public education should never depend on a student’s ZIP code. This funding is going to help ensure every student – regardless of financial means – has the tools necessary to participate and thrive. Grants under the CEEG program are designed to help provide access and inclusion for all learners by bridging the gap for students with limited ability to participate in continuity of education. The grants may be used to purchase computer equipment, such as laptops, tablets and internet hot spots, or used toward providing instructional materials, such as paper lessons and coursework. Schools with the highest percentages of Read more

 

Matzie: Beaver County Career and Technology Center to receive nearly $120,000 to ensure safe operations

(Aug 07, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 7 – The Beaver County Career and Technology Center is on track to receive $119,044 in federal funding to help the center implement safety plans for students and staff, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. The funding comes from the CARES Act, which authorizes governors to determine the educational use of Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Funds. "Our career and technical students are ready to get on with their lives, but the pandemic and related safety concerns have temporarily derailed education and career planning,” Matzie said. “Now, thanks to this funding, our talented young adults will soon be back on track for learning, and our area employers will be able to count on a continuing supply of well-trained applicants.” The funds may be used for a variety of resources, including protective equipment, hand sanitizer/cleaning products; equipment or technology to take classrooms online; installation of barriers or other protective devices in building structures; and the purchase health apps to assist in contact tracing and monitoring of students. The funding is part of a $10.2 million package allocated to career and technical schools throughout the state. The governor has allocated the money, and schools will be able to access the funds in the next week. Grants were calculated based on the allocation formula for federal Perkins CTC grants, which Read more

 

Matzie: $21,500 in COVID-19 relief funding for Beaver County libraries, historic, social service organizations

(Aug 05, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 5 – Grants totaling $21,500 will help Beaver County programs, libraries and cultural attractions impacted by the pandemic, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced today. Matzie said the grants – provided by the Pennsylvania Humanities Council under the PHC CARES Program – include the following: Beaver County Historical Research and Landmarks Foundation – $3,000. Laughlin Memorial Library – $4,500. B.F. Jones Memorial Library – $5,000. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Beaver County – $4,500. Harmonie Associates d/b/a Friends of Old Economy Village – $4,500. “Each of these organizations plays such an important role in our community, from supporting youth in need and engaging residents in learning and community programs, to preserving our history for future generations and spurring tourism that boosts our local economy,” Matzie said. “Unfortunately, each has felt the impact of the pandemic, which has closed doors and put a halt to fundraising events. Securing this funding will help these important programs resume operations and ensure that they do so safely.” The grant is part of package of $780,500 in emergency relief grants under the PHC CARES Program – funded by the CARES Act – to 140 Pennsylvania cultural nonprofits that have been impacted by the pandemic. The goal of the Read more

 

Matzie: More than $5.2 million in COVID safety funding to regional universities, colleges, tech institutes

(Aug 05, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, Aug. 5 – Grant funding totaling more than $5.2 million will help ensure students and staff returning to universities and tech schools in Southwest Pennsylvania this fall will benefit from the safest possible learning environments, announced state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny. Matzie said the funding – which includes nearly $300,000 to the Community College of Beaver County – will allow administrators to move forward with plans to protect students and staff from COVID-19. “Securing this funding means that the Community College of Beaver County and other schools in the Southwest region of the state will have a wide range of safety options at their disposal,” Matzie said. “Schools may use the funding for resources such as cleaning and sanitization supplies, personal protective equipment, barriers and other structural modifications and technology to support online learning.” Matzie said that of more than $5.2 million going to schools in the Southwest region of the state, nearly $2.7 million will go to schools in Allegheny County, while approximately $2.5 million will go to schools in Beaver, Butler, Cambria, Fayette, Indiana, Lawrence, Washington and Westmoreland counties. Administered by the state Department of Education, the federal funding was based on both the shares of total enrollments by each postsecondary sector and the number of Read more

 

Hazard pay grants now available to support frontline workers

(Jul 17, 2020)

HARRISBURG, July 17 – Workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic could see hazard pay through funding advocated for by the Pennsylvania House Democrats. Eligible employers can now apply for $50 million in available grants to offer hazard pay to frontline workers in life-sustaining industries. Throughout the COVID-19 health crisis, the Pennsylvania House Democratic Caucus has fought to support frontline workers and worked to ensure federal CARES Act dollars were allocated as part of the state budget package. Businesses in the following industries are eligible to apply for the grant funding: Health care and social assistance Food manufacturing Food retail facilities Public transit and ground passenger transportation Security services Janitorial services to buildings and dwellings More information on the grants is available here . Since the very beginning of the pandemic, and during 2020-21 budget negotiations, House Democrats have advocated for fair compensation and protections for frontline workers. Democratic state representatives from across Pennsylvania lauded the opening of the new grant program. Northeast Region Rep. Maureen Madden, D-Monroe : "I am a strong advocate for better wages and conditions for all workers. During times of financial uncertainty, hazard pay is crucial for all frontline workers facing increased exposure to the COVID-19 Read more

 

Matzie: More than $146,400 to help those struggling with opioid use disorder return to work

(Jul 02, 2020)

AMBRIDGE, July 2 – Beaver County residents struggling with opioid use disorder will benefit from a $146,444 grant to fund employment support services, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced . Matzie said the federally funded Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration grant will support services such as vocational assessments, resume writing, interviewing skills, job placement and transportation assistance related to employment. “Opioid use disorder has robbed decent, hardworking people of formerly productive lives,” Matzie said. “So many want simply to get back on their feet and recover their independence. With this funding, we can offer them the skills and resources they need to take that first and most important step – gainful employment.” Life’s Work of Western PA will use the grant – which is part of a package of $2 million in SAMHA funding to 14 organizations statewide – to provide services to residents struggling with opioid use disorder in Beaver, Allegheny, Westmoreland, Washington, Fayette and Greene counties. The grants are administered by the state Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs. Read more

 

Matzie: House passes police reform bills to improve officer hiring, training

(Jun 24, 2020)

HARRISBURG, June 24 – The House today unanimously passed two bills that would improve policing in the commonwealth by ensuring hiring agencies have full access to a candidate’s background information and by enhancing officer training, state Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, announced. “These are common-sense bills that set us on the path to real reform,” said Matzie, who said he voted for both bills because they promise to improve law enforcement’s ability to hire and maintain the best-qualified people for the job. Matzie said H.B. 1841 would require employers to disclose employment information to law enforcement agencies conducting background checks and also create a database to track officer disciplinary actions so agencies would be aware of potential red flags before hiring an officer who has separated from another agency. “Most employers conduct background checks,” Matzie said. “In an area as critical as law enforcement, it’s only practical that important information would be included in those checks.” Matzie said a second bill, H.B. 1910 , would require mandatory training for officers on interacting with people of diverse racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds and on the use of force and de-escalation methods. It would also require officers to be evaluated for post-traumatic stress after a lethal use-of-force incident. “Police officers have a Read more

 

Matzie announces more than $261,000 in fire grants
Oct 09, 2020

Matzie: House unanimously adopts resolution designating October 2020 as ‘Agent Orange Awareness Month’
Sep 30, 2020

Matzie: House unanimously adopts ‘Rail Safety Week’ resolution
Sep 29, 2020

Matzie: Nearly $316,000 to fund new Ambridge playground, spray park
Sep 24, 2020

Matzie: Grants will ensure elementary school students have access to fresh fruits and vegetables
Sep 22, 2020

Rep. Matzie's Summer 2020 Newsletter
Sep 21, 2020

Matzie introduces bill to trace COVID-19 through wastewater
Sep 18, 2020

Matzie: $175,000 grant awarded for Walker Park stream restoration
Sep 15, 2020

Matzie: Nearly $193,000 in funding will bring targeted support for students
Aug 25, 2020

Matzie: Nearly $125,000 in funding to ensure special needs students continue learning
Aug 20, 2020

Matzie participates in PIAA Oversight Committee hearing on fall youth sports
Aug 18, 2020

Matzie: $1.1 million to fund multiple sanitation system upgrades for area
Aug 17, 2020

Matzie: More than $1.8 million in funding will combat homelessness, improve opportunities for vulnerable residents
Aug 14, 2020

Matzie: Nearly $47,000 to Freedom Area School District to ensure online learning
Aug 07, 2020

Matzie: Beaver County Career and Technology Center to receive nearly $120,000 to ensure safe operations
Aug 07, 2020

Matzie: $21,500 in COVID-19 relief funding for Beaver County libraries, historic, social service organizations
Aug 05, 2020

Matzie: More than $5.2 million in COVID safety funding to regional universities, colleges, tech institutes
Aug 05, 2020

Hazard pay grants now available to support frontline workers
Jul 17, 2020

Matzie: More than $146,400 to help those struggling with opioid use disorder return to work
Jul 02, 2020

Matzie: House passes police reform bills to improve officer hiring, training
Jun 24, 2020