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Neilson: Don't Reward Nuisance Bars

(Jun 24, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Ed Neilson speaks on the house floor, questioning the merits of a proposal to legalize Video Gaming Terminals in Pennsylvania. Read more

 

Neilson: VGTs would harm Philadelphia and surrounding communities

(Jun 22, 2016)

HARRISBURG, June 22 – State Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., today said he voted against an amendment that would have resulted in an explosion of gambling across the commonwealth because it would harm Philadelphia and further embolden nuisance bars throughout the city. “I don’t have a problem with gaming,” said Neilson, who is the only Philadelphia member to sit on the House Gaming Oversight Committee. “I do take issue with any legislation that would allow 75,000 video gaming terminals to pop up across the state basically overnight.” House Bill 2150 was originally introduced to regulate the fantasy sports industry in Pennsylvania and protect consumers using their services. However, an amendment, which Neilson opposed, was offered in the House that would have allowed the use of video gaming terminals at liquor establishments and truck stops. That amendment was unsuccessful. “If the VGT legislation had been amended into this bill and it became law, obviously revenues from the casinos and the lottery would have been affected, which would have directly impacted the amount of funds available for property tax relief and senior programs like PACE. Even a 10 percent loss in casino revenues, which I think is a modest estimate, would have led to serious funding issues and the inevitable loss of casino jobs,” Neilson said. “We have seen that trend in every state that has allowed these machines to take root in their communities. But my largest concern has been and continues to be about t Read more

 

Neilson announces Property Tax/Rent Rebate deadline extension

(Jun 06, 2016)

PHILADELPHIA, June 6 – State Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., announced today that the application deadline for the popular Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program has been extended to the end of the year. "This extension allows everyone who is eligible the opportunity to apply for the rebate program," Neilson said. "I encourage residents to stop by my district office to find out if they qualify and for assistance with applying to take advantage of this rebate on 2015 property taxes or rent." The Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program is available to eligible Pennsylvanians 65 or older; widows and widowers 50 or older; and people with disabilities 18 or older. Homeowners are limited to a $35,000 maximum annual income, while renters' income may be no more than $15,000, although applicants may exclude half of their Social Security income. The maximum standard rebate is $650. The program is supported by the Pennsylvania Lottery and from slots gaming revenue. Applications are available online through the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue at www.revenue.state.pa.us, or by calling 1-888-222-9190. Rebates will be distributed starting July 1. Since the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program’s 1971 inception, older and disabled adults have received more than $5.9 billion in property tax and rent relief. Neilson said constituents can get help filling out the application by visiting his district office, located at 16 Old Ashton Road. While at the office, eligible residents can also apply for a SEPTA Read more

 

Neilson to host SEPTA Key photo ID event

(May 23, 2016)

PHILADELPHIA, May 23 – State Rep. Ed Neilson is hosting an event for older Pennsylvanians and residents with disabilities to obtain their SEPTA Key photo ID cards from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, June 2 at his district office, 16 Old Ashton Road, Philadelphia. SEPTA Key is the modern fare payment and collection system being unveiled by the transit agency. It offers seniors an alternative to using their Pennsylvania driver’s licenses or state-issued ID cards. The new Key cards will have contactless chips, so all riders will have to do is pass it across the face of the validator to pay for their ride. While an appointment isn’t required to attend the event, interested attendees can call Neilson’s office to reserve their spot. For questions, or more information about the event, call Neilson’s office (215) 330-3714. Read more

 

Area ambulance companies receive nearly $29,000 in state grants

(Apr 21, 2016)

PHILADELPHIA, April 21 -- State Reps. Mike Driscoll, Ed Neilson, Jason Dawkins and Kevin Boyle announced today that four ambulance companies in Northeast Philadelphia are sharing nearly $29,000 in state grants. "First responders are essential to public safety, and these grants provide them with resources so they can remain more focused on saving lives than on raising funds," Driscoll said. "These men and women make a tremendous sacrifice, and I applaud their service to our communities." The grants are from Pennsylvania's Fire Company and Volunteer Ambulance Service Grant Program and were awarded in February. In all, 2,538 grants were awarded statewide. The grants are partly funded from gaming revenue. "Northeast Philadelphia relies on these ambulance companies and their volunteers to be there for us when every second counts," Neilson said. "These grants will help them continue to provide this invaluable services to our community." Grant recipients and amounts awarded in Northeast Philadelphia are as follows: • Northeast First Aid Corps – $7,202 • Burholme First Aid Corps Inc. – $7,202 • Rhawnhurst Bustleton Ambulance Association Inc. – $7,202 • Wissinoming Volunteer First Aid Corps – $7,202 "Serving on the front lines whenever there is a fire, accident or other calamity, these essential service providers are among the most worthy recipients of state aid," Dawkins said. "These funds will allow them to continue their mission of providing life-saving services for our Read more

 

Neilson votes for medical marijuana bill

(Apr 13, 2016)

HARRISBURG, April 13 – State Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., today supported the final passage of a bill to legalize medical marijuana, sending the legislation to Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk. “Patients shouldn’t be forced to decide between the medicine they need and breaking the law, and when this bill is signed into law they won’t have to,” Neilson said. Neilson said legalizing medical marijuana will help people who are suffering in their daily lives, including children who are experiencing daily seizures, veterans enduring post-traumatic stress disorder and many others who need this medication to relieve their pain. “Today is a good day. The commonwealth will finally allow some of our most vulnerable patients to use this urgently needed medicine,” Neilson said. “Today is a victory for commonsense and compassion.” Under the bill, authorized doctors would be only be able to prescribe medical marijuana for the following conditions: intractable seizures, cancer, HIV/AIDS, ALS, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, inflammatory bowel disease, Huntingdon's disease, Crohn's disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, glaucoma, autism and neuropathic pain and certain spinal cord injuries. The governor has indicated he will sign such legislation. Read more

 

Neilson applauds passage of medical marijuana bill

(Mar 16, 2016)

HARRISBURG, March 16 – State Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., praised today’s House passage of legislation that would legalize the use of medical marijuana in Pennsylvania. “Today, Harrisburg was able to come together in a bipartisan fashion to ensure that citizens in our state who suffer from debilitating diseases can obtain the medicine they need,” Neilson said. “Misunderstandings about this medicine and fears about its potential abuse shouldn’t tie the hands of doctors who are trying to offer relief to their patients.” The House passed an amended version of S.B. 3, which originally passed the Senate in May 2015. The amended bill would require a prescribing doctor to be registered with the Health Department before they could prescribe the use of cannabis. “The need for this medicine has been great and the inability to acquire it has caused real pain throughout this commonwealth,” Neilson said. “I have heard of multiple families moving out of Pennsylvania to a state that allows medical marijuana simply to ensure a child or other loved one has access to the medicine. Patients shouldn’t be forced to decide between the medicine they need and breaking the law, and when this bill is signed into law they won’t have to.” Under the bill, authorized doctors would be only be able to prescribe medical marijuana for the following conditions: intractable seizures, cancer, HIV/AIDS, ALS, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, inflammatory bowel disease, Huntingdon's disease, Crohn's disease, post-t Read more

 

Neilson: Castor Ave. office is closing, but I’m still here to help

(Feb 24, 2016)

PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 24 – State Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., is reminding constituents that although his Castor Avenue constituent service office will be closing at the end of the week, his Old Ashton Road constituent service office remains open and ready to assist them. Due to unforeseen circumstances, Neilson will close his 8100 Castor Ave. constituent service office at 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25. "It is my goal to ensure that each and every resident of the 174th Legislative District has easy access to the services my office can provide," Neilson said. "While it is unfortunate that this office had to close, I am currently looking at other options that would enable my staff and me to offer the same opportunities to the district in a more convenient location." Neilson said his main constituent service office, located at 16 Old Ashton Road, will remain open and can be reached at (215) 330-3714. "My Old Ashton Road office remains fully functional and my staff is equipped to handle a variety of questions about issues related to city, state or federal government," Neilson said. "I hope constituents think of our office as a one-stop shop if they need help with car registrations, signing up for the PACE or PACENET prescription drug programs, obtaining birth or death certificates, or other services." Read more

 

Property Tax/Rent Rebate forms available at my office

(Feb 15, 2016)

Forms for Pennsylvania’s Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program for the 2015 tax year are available at my district office – and my staff is ready to help you file yours for free ! The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians 65 or older, widows and widowers 50 or older, and people with disabilities 18 or older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters. Half of Social Security income is excluded and the maximum standard rebate is $650. Claimants must reapply for rebates every year because they are based on annual income and property taxes or rent paid each year. Spouses, personal representatives or estates may file rebate claims on behalf of deceased claimants who lived at least one day in 2015 and meet all other eligibility criteria. The oft-extended deadline to apply for a rebate on property taxes or rent paid in 2015 is June 30, 2016, and the rebates normally are distributed by the Deparment of Revenue beginning July 1. So, the sooner you file, the sooner you will receive your money. Read more

 

Neilson promotes National Senior Independence Month

(Feb 10, 2016)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 10 – The Pennsylvania House of Representatives unanimously adopted a resolution today, sponsored by state Rep. Ed Neilson, D-Phila., which designates the month of February 2016 as "National Senior Independence Month" in Pennsylvania. "I empathize with older Pennsylvanians who want to do everything possible to stay in the homes that they spent years working for, and my loved ones have expressed similar desires to me and my family," Neilson said. "According to the American Association of Retired Persons, 86 percent of adults over 45 years of age would prefer to stay in their current residence as long as possible, and I can’t blame them. I believe it is appropriate for the state to look at every opportunity to make that desire a reality for as many seniors as possible." Neilson said that National Senior Independence Month serves as an opportunity for senior citizens to evaluate their current living situation, recognize the strengths and weaknesses in their daily routine and make adjustments for a better lifestyle. "While living independently can pose challenging for some older Pennsylvanians, a few simple changes to home or lifestyle could end up making all the difference. Ensuring that a home is well taken care of and that there aren’t any obvious risk to a senior’s health or well-being will go a long way in keeping them in their home," Neilson said. Neilson said that older Pennsylvanians who are interested in staying in their home should routinely Read more

 

PACE prescription programs benefit seniors

(Feb 10, 2016)

PACE, PACENET and PACE plus Medicare are Pennsylvania's prescription assistance programs for older adults, offering low-cost prescription medication to qualified residents, age 65 and older. As of this year, the legislature passed a law excluding Social Security Medicare Part B premiums from being counted towards income levels. Read more

 

CHIP offers kids protection and parents peace of mind

(Jan 29, 2016)

Pennsylvania has a Children's Health Insurance Program that provides free and low-cost health insurance to children. CHIP is not welfare – it covers children of working parents whose employers don't offer coverage and who can't afford private insurance. If you can't afford health insurance for your children, chances are they are eligible for CHIP. Read more

 

Pa. Treasury could be holding your unclaimed property

(Jan 01, 2016)

Each year, the Pennsylvania Treasury receives millions of dollars of unclaimed property. It is estimated that roughly one in 10 Pennsylvanians has unclaimed property. Read more

 

Neilson, Driscoll blast canceled session during budget impasse

(Dec 23, 2015)

HARRISBURG, Dec. 23 – State Reps. Ed Neilson and Mike Driscoll, both D-Phila., questioned today’s move by Republican House leaders to adjourn without taking up a bill that would end the nearly six-month state budget impasse. “I don’t understand why we aren’t in session right now voting on a budget compromise that has been largely agreed to by all parties involved,” Neilson said. “We were supposed to be in session on Sunday, but Republican leaders canceled it. We were supposed to be in session on Monday, but Republican leaders canceled it. Now, I have to return to Northeast Philadelphia and tell my neighbors that, because of the unwillingness of a few, the state will continue to be unable to fund counties, human service providers and nonprofits. The Philadelphia School District is just weeks away from being unable to open their doors and they try to pull this. It’s nothing but nonsense.” Senate Bill 1073, a General Appropriations bill that reflects the spending framework agreed to by Gov. Tom Wolf, House Democrats, Senate Democrats and Senate Republicans, passed the House yesterday on second consideration and was scheduled to receive its third and final consideration today, but the chamber’s GOP speaker abruptly canceled session. “This move to adjourn pulled by House Republican leaders is an unconscionable decision, especially as many individuals across this commonwealth are suffering because of this extended budget impasse,” Driscoll said. “Now, House Republicans are on Read more

 

Neilson on Dyslexia Awarenss Month

(Oct 19, 2015)

Pa. state Rep. Ed Neilson thanks the House of Representatives for unanimously adopting his resolution recognizing October 2015 Dyslexia Awarenss Month in Pennsylvania. Neilson recounts his son's struggle with the learning disorder as the inspiration for his efforts. Read more

 

Neilson: Ready to Serve

(Aug 25, 2015)

Pa. state Rep. Ed Neilson was sworn in as a member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and outlines his priorities in his new role in state government. Read more

 

Neilson sworn in to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives

(Aug 25, 2015)

HARRISBURG, Aug. 25 – State Rep. Ed Neilson was sworn into office today to represent northeast Philadelphia’s 174th Legislative District in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. “I am glad to be back in Harrisburg and I am ready to get to work advocating for the people of Philadelphia,” Neilson said. “While there are many important issues to tackle, ending the budget impasse is one of my top priorities. Too often partisan ideals get in the way of workable policy and it is my hope to change that.” Neilson’s legislative interests include job creation, improving public safety, increasing educational opportunities throughout Philadelphia, addressing the problem of absentee landlords, and honoring and protecting the elderly. “Ensuring our children are ready for a modern workforce is essential to the future prosperity of this commonwealth, and the only way to prepare a modern workforce is with a world-class education system,” Neilson said. “Of equal importance to me is how our city and state treats the elderly in our communities. I'm looking forward to working with my colleagues to create real and effective solutions to those issues." Before winning a special election Aug. 11, Neilson served as an at-large city councilman and as a state representative for the 169th Legislative District, which was located in northeast Philadelphia but has since been relocated. Neilson, who is a lifelong member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98, also served as Read more