OPINION: Latest Republican budget plan burns us all

(Sep 07, 2017)

On Tuesday, in the Capitol of the state home to the most famous unstoppable mine fire in the world, 17 House Republicans proposed cutting coal-mine and industrial site clean-up funds to avoid taxing drillers and energy companies. The irony only pales to the absurdity and recklessness of the entire plan. Also filed under heartless, mindless and gutless: Proposed cuts to the Compulsive and Problem Gambling Treatment Fund while attempting to expand gambling across the state; Cuts to the Job Training Fund, Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority, Industrial Development Fund and Manufacturing Fund as the rust belt creeps farther across the state; A suggested raid on the Motor License Fund – which is made up of money drivers already paid to fix roads and bridges that are in historic disrepair. Republican budgeting has become little more than a bonfire of tea party schemes that will consume Pennsylvania, its resources, air, water, health and economy before it burns out. Soon in Pennsylvania, it won’t take an actual fire to destroy a community. It will just take not learning from one. Read more


Rozzi to host free Gun Safety seminar

(Jul 11, 2017)

HARRISBURG, July 11 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, along with the Berks County Sheriff’s Office, will host a free gun safety seminar from 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 15 at the Muhlenberg Township building, 210 George St., Reading. Participants in the seminar will discuss firearms safety, safe firearm storage, and laws pertaining to personal ownership, concealed carry and self-defense, plus more. The event is free for local adults. Children accompanied by a parent or guardian are also welcome to attend. Space is limited. Anyone interested in participating must pre-register by calling Rozzi’s district office at 610-921-8921. Read more


Rozzi announces $40,030 state grant for Reading Public Museum operations

(Jun 01, 2017)

READING, June 1 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi today announced a $40,030 Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission grant for The Foundation for the Reading Public Museum. The Reading Public Museum has displays featuring science and civilizations, a planetarium and a 25-acre arboretum. It also offers educational programs for families, adults and children. The money will augment its operations. “Congratulations to all of the hard workers and volunteers at the Reading Public Museum,” said Rozzi, D-Berks. “They do an outstanding job of preserving and telling the story of our regional history and culture, and their work brings great credit upon everyone who calls Reading home.” The PHMC awarded almost $2 million in grants to 141 eligible museums and official county historical societies from 57 Pennsylvania counties that met the following criteria: Museums located in Pennsylvania with annual operating budgets exceeding $100,000 (excluding capital and in-kind services) and at least one full-time professional staff person. Official County Historical Societies designated as the official historical society for the county. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission is the state’s official history agency. Read more


Rozzi Honors Reading High Boys Basketball Team

(May 24, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Mark Rozzi speaks on the house floor to recognize the Reading High Red Knights for their PIAA 6A Boys Basketball State Championship this season. Read more


Rozzi announces $385,643 in state grants to improve area traffic flow

(May 11, 2017)

HARRISBURG, May 11 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, today announced a total of $385,643.32 in Pennsylvania Department of Transportation grants to improve area traffic signals. The money will pay for the following: a traffic signal modernization project in the Borough of West Reading. West Reading will provide the remaining $33,634 match of the total project cost of $168,170. traffic signal upgrades in St. Lawrence Borough. St. Lawrence Borough will provide the remaining $62,776.83 of the total project cost of $313,884.15 “Countless vehicles travel through this area each day,” Rozzi said. “Improvements and investments to our roads and infrastructure are vital to our local communities, and residents of West Reading and St. Lawrence will benefit from these projects for years to come.” The grant comes from PennDOT’s Green Light – Go Program, which provides state funds for the operation and maintenance of traffic signals along critical and designated corridors on state highways. The Green Light – Go Program was created by Act 89, Pennsylvania’s transportation infrastructure investment plan passed in 2013. Read more


Rozzi pushes to protect victims of human trafficking

(May 08, 2017)

HARRISBURG, May 8 – Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, joined the Pennsylvania Psychological Association Monday in pushing for protection for the victims of human trafficking, particularly children. At the news conference, Rozzi discussed his Safe Harbor in Human Trafficking legislation (H.B. 525), which would make the child victims of human trafficking immune from criminal prosecution. “Human trafficking is nothing short of modern day slavery,” Rozzi said. “Children are especially vulnerable as they never had the chance to develop skills to identify, avoid and resist adults who pose as friends.” Children who are the victims of human trafficking are exploited through prostitution and are frequently provided with drugs by adults who manipulate them and control them, psychologically and physically. In many cases, the children end up charged with related criminal offenses. “We must stop treating these children, who find themselves in the most deplorable of situations, as criminals. They are victims,” Rozzi said, adding that sexually exploited children need to be identified and brought to a safe setting – not jail. “They deserve immunity, not re-victimization. We need to provide them services that will help rehabilitate, educate and get them on the path to being a productive member of society.” Rozzi’s bill would have the Department of Human Services work with other agencies to develop a statewide protocol to Read more


Rozzi congratulates local House of Representatives Scholarship winner

(Apr 26, 2017)

HARRISBURG, April 26 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, congratulated Antietam Middle Senior High School senior Kelly Weikel today for winning one of two recently awarded 2017-18 Pennsylvania House of Representative Scholarships. Winners of the scholarship receive a four-year scholarship at the tuition level equivalent of one semester at a State System of Higher Education School. “Congratulations to Kelly for earning this scholarship for her academic performance, commitment to her community and demonstration of leadership,” Rozzi said. “I hope this scholarship provides much needed assistance as she continues her education, because no Pennsylvanian should have to take on unreasonable amounts of debt in order to better themselves.” To be eligible, a student must be a graduating senior living in Pennsylvania with a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade-point average, participate in extracurricular activities, have community and leadership skills and demonstrate financial need. The scholarship program, which is privately funded by individual and corporate donations, is administered through the Foundation for Enhancing Communities. Read more


Rozzi Rallies for Marijuana Decriminalization

(Apr 19, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Mark Rozzi joined marijuana law reform supporters in Harrisburg for a rally about decriminalizing marijuana. Rozzi supports legislation that would make possession of small amounts of marijuana a summary offense with a maximum fine of $100. Read more


Rozzi Pushes For Statute Of Limitations Reform

(Apr 03, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Mark Rozzi led a rally on the Capitol steps to highlight the long overdue need for reform of Pennsylvania’s laws affecting victims of childhood sexual abuse. Read more


Rozzi, advocates, survivors push for statute of limitations reform before vote

(Apr 03, 2017)

HARRISBURG, April 3 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, led a rally on the Capitol steps today to highlight the long overdue need for reform of Pennsylvania’s laws affecting victims of childhood sexual abuse. Last year, the statewide outpouring of support for statute of limitations reform following the attorney general’s release of the Altoona/Johnstown Diocese Grand Jury Report, propelled action on the issue. Last April, H.B. 1947 with Rozzi’s retroactive provision, which would permit past victims of childhood sexual abuse to sue their perpetrators, passed the House overwhelmingly, but was gutted and replaced by Sen. Joseph Scarnati’s version that removed the revival provision. The bill was not moved for a concurrence vote in the House. The legislative debate over H.B. 1947 will carry over this week as S.B. 261 is scheduled for a vote in the House Judiciary Committee Tuesday. The same language that was used to strip the House bill last session is in this year's S.B. 261. Rozzi introduced what he called the “real deal” (H.B. 612), reflecting the recommendations from the four grand jury reports conducted to date. "We owe all victims of childhood sexual abuse a chance at justice,” Rozzi said. “We can compromise on pensions, liquor and the budget. But we should never make deals against protecting children.” “Victims of childhood sexual abuse have waited long enough for reform of our arbitrary Read more


Rozzi announces grant for sewer improvements in West Reading

(Mar 29, 2017)

HARRISBURG, March 29 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, announced today that West Reading will receive a $156,590 grant to replace sanitary sewer infrastructure. The PA Small Water and Sewer grant was approved Wednesday by the Commonwealth Financing Authority. The funding will go to improving sanitary sewer service for customers along an alley from South Fifth Avenue to Linden Road, between Sunset and Sycamore roads. An existing fragile, vitrified clay sewer main and connections will be replaced with 1,364 feet of PVC pipe. “Heavy vehicles use this alley, so this project will prevent future sewer line leaks and breaks,” Rozzi said. “Infrastructure investments are so important to our local communities, and West Reading residents will be able to benefit from this project for years to come.” The PA Small Water and Sewer grants are available for the construction, improvement, expansion, rehabilitation or repair of a water supply or sanitary sewer system. Total project costs must be between $30,000 and $500,000. The Commonwealth Financing Authority was established in 2004 as an independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) to administer Pennsylvania’s economic stimulus packages. It is responsible for funding programs and investments in Pennsylvania’s economic growth. The CFA consists of seven board members: four legislative appointees and the secretaries of DCED, the Office of the Budget and the Read more


RESCHEDULED: Rozzi offers free document shredding opportunity on May 13

(Mar 22, 2017)

State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, invites residents of his district to a free document shredding event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13 at his constituent service office, 4933 Kutztown Road. Read more


PA's HealthyWoman program

(Mar 17, 2017)

The Pennsylvania Department of Health is offering a program to provide free breast and cervical cancer screenings to Pennsylvania residents. Early detection is, of course, key in fighting these debilitating diseases, so I strongly encourage anyone who has not had recent testing done to learn more about this opportunity. For those who meet eligibility requirements, HealthyWoman offers clinical breast exams, mammograms, pelvic examinations and Pap smears, and follow-up diagnostic tests for abnormal results. Eligibility is based on age, Pennsylvania residency, income and insurance status. For a full list of eligibility requirements and details on the program, please click here . Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among women, and since the risk increases with age, it’s vitally important to schedule regular checkups with your doctor or use the HealthyWoman program. As always, if you had any questions or concerns about any state government-related issue, please don’t hesitate to contact my office. Read more


CANCELED -- Rozzi offers free document shredding opportunity at upcoming event

(Feb 21, 2017)

State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, invites residents of his district to a free document shredding event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 11 at his constituent service office, 4933 Kutztown Road. Read more


Rozzi releases statement on Solebury School and introduction of the Real Deal

(Feb 17, 2017)

State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, released the following statement today about the Bucks County Solebury School Grand Jury Report released earlier this month and his introduction of H.B. 612. The report summarized decades-long widespread sexual abuse of dozens of students at the elite private school, but no charges could be brought against perpetrators because of the expired statute of limitations. House Bill 612, known as the Real Deal, would eliminate the criminal and civil statute of limitations for childhood sexual assault claims and allow for a revival of the civil window. Read more


Rozzi announces $246,512 grant for West Reading

(Feb 16, 2017)

State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, announced today that West Reading has received a $246,512 grant from the Keystone Communities program to go toward community revitalization. Read more


Pa. granted extension on REAL ID compliance

(Jan 20, 2017)

Pennsylvania received a limited extension through June 6 to update driver’s licenses to meet requirements under the federal REAL ID Act of 2005, but the General Assembly must still act quickly to comply. Without action, Pennsylvanians could be denied access to federal facilities and eventually even airline travel. Specifically, Pennsylvanians will need federally approved ID for air travel beginning Jan. 22, 2018, and with the limited extension we will need a federally approved ID to access federal buildings, nuclear power plants and military bases beginning June 7, 2017. Rest assured, I am following this issue very closely and am doing everything possible to ensure that we pass comprehensive changes to comply with the federal government. Please visit https://www.dhs.gov/real-id/pennsylvania for the most up to date information on the requirements and remember that my office can help you obtain a birth certificate or driver’s license. Read more


Rozzi invites constituents to marijuana decriminalization town hall

(Jan 09, 2017)

State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, today invited constituents to join him at a town hall from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 701 Penn St. in Reading to discuss the pros and cons of decriminalizing marijuana. Read more


myCOMPASS Mobile App available now

(Dec 13, 2016)

The myCOMPASS PA online app is now available for download on the Apple and Google Play app stores for use on iPhones and Android smartphones. Among other features, myCOMPASS PA will allow individuals to take photos of necessary documents and upload them directly to their case files through a secure, safe environment. Other key features include: Users will be able to view benefits details after logging in to their myCOMPASS account; Individuals can view their processing status of their applications; and Update case-related information such as address, phone number, email address, and voter registration. In the two weeks after it launched in the Apple store, 4,669 users downloaded the app with 13,680 clients viewing the status of their benefits, 1,568 documents were uploaded, and the app received a 5-star rating. myCOMPASS PA is estimated to save an average of $3.2 million per year by reducing mail processing time, manual information entry, call center calls, postage and printing. Read more


Gold, Blue Star Moms team with Wreaths Across America to honor veterans

(Dec 08, 2016)

TEMPLE, Dec. 8 – The Central Pennsylvania Chapters of the Gold Star Mothers of America and the Blue Star Mothers of America will partner with the national Wreaths Across America organization for the annual wreath-laying ceremony at noon Saturday at the Capitol in Harrisburg, said state Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, who will participate in the ceremony. Wreaths Across America is a nonprofit organization founded to continue and expand the annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Ceremony. Its mission, “Remember, Honor, Teach,” is carried out in part by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies each December in all 50 state capitols. The keynote speaker will be Col. David E. Wood, chief of staff of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard’s 28th Infantry Division. John Brenner, chairman of the Pennsylvania State Veterans Commission, also will speak. State Rep. Stephen Barrar, Republican chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness, will preside over the ceremony. Individual wreaths, signifying every branch of the armed services, will be formally presented by respective representatives of the military in addition to the remembrance wreath. The ceremonial wreaths are provided by the Worcester Wreath Co. as a donation to the Wreaths Across America campaign. Staff Sgt. Ian Bowling of the U.S. Army Soldiers' Chorus and the Central Dauphin High School choir, under the direction of John Madas, will perform at the ceremony. Read more