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House Democrats fight to keep renters, homeowners Safe at Home

In the News: Dept. of Human Services name change better reflects mission

(Dec 08, 2014)

House Bill 993, which renamed the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare as the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services, was signed into law as Act 132 during the 2013-14 Legislative Session.According to advocates for the change, renaming the department was long overdue, and as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported, the name change better reflects the department’s mission.“[The name change] is a good first step,” said Bob Nelkin, president of the United Way of Allegheny County, one of numerous Pittsburgh-area nonprofits that was involved in the renaming campaign.“The second step is to recognize that these are important, vital services. … These services are vital to helping people live in a safe and dignified way,” such as helping frail seniors, helping foster children and helping people with disabilities.”Pennsylvania was the only state still using the name Department of Public Welfare.In order to mitigate costs associated with the transition, the law also allows the department to use the name Department of Public Welfare on badges, licenses, contracts, deeds, stationery and any other official documents until existing supplies are exhausted.The act also establishes an anonymous Department of Human Services fraud tip line to report suspected fraud or abuse. It can be reached at 1.844.DHS.TIPS. Read more

 

Apply for health insurance by Feb. 16

(Dec 07, 2014)

The open enrollment period for health care coverage is now underway. If you or someone you know is in need of health insurance, please consider visiting the federal Marketplace at www.HealthCare.gov. Applicants have until Feb. 16, 2015 to enroll. Everyone, no matter what age, needs health insurance. A random accident or unexpected illness could put you in danger of losing not only your good health but also your financial future. Read more

 

Marcellus Shale tax would provide valuable revenue to Pennsylvania

(Dec 06, 2014)

As Pennsylvania faces a nearly $2 billion structural deficit brought on by years of Republican budgeting full of one-time gimmicks and smoke and mirrors, a Marcellus Shale tax could provide much needed help in closing the hole left by Republican leadership. Read more

 

Dermody: Four years of Corbett’s disastrous agenda leaves huge hole in Pennsylvania’s budget

(Dec 05, 2014)

For the past four years, House Democrats have vigorously fought against Gov. Tom Corbett’s misguided agenda. We fought against his devastating cuts to our schools because we realize Pennsylvania’s children deserve the best education possible. We fought against his handouts of corporate tax breaks to prevent Pennsylvania’s middle class from shouldering too much of a tax burden. We advocated for a reasonable Marcellus Shale tax, as every other gas producing state has, to ensure drillers are paying their fair share for our resources. Read more

 

HEROIN: What you need to know about Pennsylvania’s Good Samaritan Law

(Dec 05, 2014)

Landmark legislation passed during the 2013-14 Legislative Session now allows first responders, including law enforcement, fire fighters, EMS or other organizations the ability to administer a medication known as naloxone, a life-saving opioid-overdose antidote. The law also allows individuals such as friends or family members who might be in a position to help a person at risk of experiencing an opioid-related overdose to obtain a prescription for naloxone. Additionally, Act 139 provides immunity from prosecution for those responding to and reporting overdoses. Read more

 

PHOTOS: Navy marks 73rd anniversary of attack on Pearl Harbor

(Dec 04, 2014)

The U.S. Navy marked the 73rd anniversary of the attacks on Pearl Harbor with a ceremony at the Pennsylvania State Capitol Building on Dec. 5. Read more