Sainato: $10,000 grant will boost pre-k access to healthy food, agricultural ed

(Oct 26, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, Oct. 26 – State grant funding of $9,800 will provide New Castle pre-k students access to healthy foods and new, hands-on lessons in agriculture, state Rep. Chris Sainato announced today. Sainato, D-Lawrence, said the Department of Agriculture grant, awarded under the Pennsylvania Farm Bill’s Farm to School Grant Program, will help the center teach lessons and cultivate interests that can last a lifetime. “Securing this funding will allow Pre-K Kids Learning Center to offer healthy, farm-fresh foods, including local dairy products and produce, so students realize there are alternatives to junk food and learn to make the right choices early on, before bad eating habits set in. “The funding will also allow the center to offer gardening programs and local field trips, to give kids memorable, hands-on experiences that teach about the life cycle and foster a love of growing and the natural world. Those programs also plant the seeds to ensure Pennsylvania has a healthy supply of future farmers to continue our critically important agriculture industry.” The grant is part of a package of funding to 47 projects designed to improve access to healthy local foods and boost agricultural learning for pre-K through 5 th grade students. More information about the funding is available here . Read more

 

Sainato bill would extend disabled veteran tax exemption to surviving spouses

(Oct 07, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 7 – A bill recently introduced by state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, would expand the property tax exemption currently available to Pennsylvania’s disabled combat veterans so that it also benefits the surviving spouses of service members who were killed in action or passed away after receiving a disability rating. Sainato, Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, said he introduced H.B. 1953 – which would amend the state constitution – because he believes Pennsylvania needs to do more to recognize the sacrifices made by military spouses. “Military service resulting in disabling injury or death has a profound, life-altering impact on a service member’s spouse,” Sainato said. “Unfortunately, our laws do not do enough to recognize that sacrifice. Currently, Pennsylvania provides a property tax exemption for veterans who suffered disabling injuries in combat, but our state constitution limits that exemption to the veteran service members themselves. “That limitation creates an unfair result: it deprives the spouse of a military member who died from their injuries an important benefit they would have been guaranteed had their service member spouse survived, but with disabling injuries. My bill would correct that inequity and amend the state constitution to make the property tax exemption available to Read more

 

Sainato: Nearly $300,000 awarded to bolster pregnancy, postpartum supports for women in recovery

(Oct 05, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, Oct. 5 – Grant funding of $296,092 will expand access to pregnancy and postpartum support services for Lawrence County women recovering from substance use disorder, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant to the Center for Community Resources Inc. – administered by the PA Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs – will help the center provide services and make referrals for outpatient treatment. “Pregnant and postpartum women recovering from substance use disorder have a hard road as they work to transition from treatment back to the community and responsible parenthood,” Sainato said. “Securing this funding will help ensure that there are services and supports that pick up where inpatient treatment ends so they don’t have to go that path alone.” The funding is part of a package of more than $12 million in grants announced today to help Pennsylvanians in recovery. That funding is part of a larger package of $55 million in federal money awarded to Pennsylvania through the SAMHSA Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant Program COVID-19 Supplemental Awards. The grant will help the center serve residents in Lawrence, Beaver, Butler and Washington counties. More information about the funding is available here. Read more

 

Bipartisan group advances legislation to benefit veterans in PA

(Oct 04, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 4 – A bipartisan group of five legislators is advancing efforts to remove obstacles for military members transitioning to civilian work under a bill approved unanimously by the House Professional Licensure Committee today. House Bill 1868 – which would increase veterans’ presence on licensing boards and implement other veteran-friendly measures – was introduced by state Reps. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence; Jake Wheatley, D-Allegheny; Zach Mako, R-Lehigh/Northampton; Karen Boback, R-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Wyoming; and Dave Hickernell, R-Lancaster/Dauphin. “Pennsylvania’s military men and women give some of their prime years to serving our country,” said Sainato, who is Democratic chair of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee. “Unfortunately, many face challenges transitioning to civilian work – in part, because of licensing regulations that fail to account for military skills, training and experience. The process can prove challenging for military spouses, as well, because of frequent relocations. “Our bill would help remove those obstacles by adding more veterans and military spouses to state licensing boards, ensuring military experience is properly considered in the review process and providing expedited review, among other measures.” Mako, prime sponsor of the bill, said, “As a member of the Pennsylvania National Guard, I know how difficult it can Read more

 

Sainato: Nearly $385,000 awarded to help local students stay connected

(Oct 01, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, Oct. 1 – Grant funding of $383,660 will help ensure students in two Lawrence County school districts don’t fall behind because they lack the tech tools to stay connected. Sainato, D-Lawrence, said New Castle Area School District was awarded $273,880 – including $219,880 for technology equipment and $54,000 for internet services – and the Laurel School District was awarded $109,780 – including $104,200 for tech equipment and $5,580 for internet services. “Kids can’t compete in a modern academic setting without reliable access to technology and the internet,” Sainato said. “Unfortunately, providing those resources can be challenging for some families. Securing this funding will help Laurel and New Castle Area school districts bridge that digital divide by ensuring household income never stands in the way of connectivity.” Sainato said the grants are part of a package of $20 million in funding to school districts statewide under the Emergency Connectivity Fund, a temporary fund created through the American Rescue Plan and administered by the Federal Communications Commission. The fund helps schools and libraries cover costs associated with digital devices such as laptops, tablets, Wi-Fi hotspots, modems, routers and broadband connectivity purchases for off-campus use by students, educators and library patrons who currently lack Read more

 

Sainato co-hosts news conference highlighting free services for veterans

(Sep 15, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 15 – Highlighting the multiple ways Veterans Service Officers can assist Pennsylvanians who served our nation was the focus of a news conference today at the state Capitol co-hosted by state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence. Sainato, who is Democratic chairman of the PA House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, said he wants to be sure Pennsylvania veterans and their families are aware of the broad range of free services these trained, accredited professionals can provide. “For their valor and service to our nation, Pennsylvania’s veterans deserve the best programs and services our state can offer,” Sainato said. “Part of that means ensuring veterans and their families have the help they need navigating the system and accessing those services. That’s where Veterans Service Officers come in. “Pennsylvania has a broad network of trained, accredited VSOs who can assist with nearly every veteran-related service, from recovering lost paperwork and filing claims to advocating at VA hearings and helping families secure benefits. They can also help veterans review their eligibility for programs and services to determine whether they may be newly eligible based on changed circumstances or policies. “It’s invaluable assistance, and it’s all free.” The news conference was held in conjunction with “Veterans Service Officers Day at the Capitol,” which Read more

 

Sainato: New Castle elementary schools awarded more than $100,000 to boost access to fresh fruits and vegetables

(Aug 04, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, Aug. 4 – Grant funding of $101,010 will expand access to fresh fruits and vegetables for New Castle grade-schoolers, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the funding awarded under the USDA’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program includes two separate grants to New Castle Area School District elementary schools. “In a world where junk food is everywhere, we need to make sure kids have easy access to nutritious alternatives like fruits and vegetables, which can help them stay healthy and fight off sickness,” Sainato said. “That’s more important than ever as kids return to the classroom this year.” Sainato said the grants are part of a package of more than $7 million awarded to 288 elementary schools statewide under the FFVP. Funding priority was given to the schools with the highest rates of students eligible for free and reduced-price meals. More information about the grants is available here , and a full list of the schools receiving funding is available here . Read more

 

Sainato: More than $200,000 awarded to modernize New Castle traffic signal

(Jul 07, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, July 7 – A $201,600 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will give the green light to modernizing upgrades at a busy New Castle intersection, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant – awarded under PennDOT’s Green Light-Go Program – will fund important safety-related upgrades to the traffic signal located at the intersection of Taylor Street, East Washington Street/Route 65 and Butler Avenue. “It’s great to know that modernizing improvements are on the way for this intersection,” Sainato said. “The funding is going to allow for much-needed upgrades, including installation of new signal heads and support structures; a new signal controller and cabinet; an updated vehicle detection system; and pedestrian accommodations, including ‘walk’ signal heads, pushbuttons, curb ramps and signage. “It all spells greater safety and smoother traffic flow for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists.” The grant is part of a package of more than $15.6 million awarded for signal upgrades in 50 municipalities statewide under the Green Light-Go program. Green Light-Go grants reimburse municipalities for updates to improve traffic signal efficiency and operation. The grants can be used for projects such as installation of LED technology; traffic signal retiming; developing special event plans; monitoring Read more

 

Sainato announces nearly $109,000 in fire, EMS grants

(Jun 29, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, June 29 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced that eight fire and EMS companies in his district have been awarded $108,974 in state grants for training, equipment and other operating costs. “Frontline workers faced new risks and huge obstacles fundraising because of the pandemic,” said Sainato, who is Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee. “Securing this funding is going to help get critical resources into the hands of those who continue to protect us so vigilantly.” Sainato said these fire and EMS companies will receive the following amounts: Hickory Township Volunteer Fire Co. – $11,520. Mahoning Township Volunteer Fire Dept – $12,411. Neshannock Township Volunteer Fire Co. – $14,193. North Beaver Township Volunteer Fire Dept. – $12,054. Pulaski Township Volunteer Fire Co. – $12,233. Pulaski Township Volunteer Fire Co. (EMS) – $8,993. Shenango Township Vol. Fire Dept. – $25,159. Union Township Volunteer Firemans Association – $12,411. The grants come from the Fire Company and Emergency Medical Service Grant Program, which is administered by the Office of the State Fire Commissioner. Eligible projects include Read more

 

Sainato: $850,000 awarded to fund veteran housing, fight blight

(Jun 10, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, June 10 – State grants totaling $850,000 will support veterans facing mental health issues and help Lawrence County fight blight, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the funding – administered by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency through the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund – will go in part to help those who have sacrificed the most for the community. “Veterans have paid some heavy prices for their service, and some continue to live with post-traumatic stress and other mental health issues,” said Sainato, Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee. “Part of the funding awarded today will be used to help renovate a former Red Cross Building into a Fairweather Lodge for veterans with mental health needs. It’s hard to imagine a better investment than one that promises to bring hope to those who have sacrificed so much for the rest of us.” Sainato said additional funding will support community revitalization by allowing the county to continue with successful efforts to clear localized blight. The grants include: $250,000 to Human Service Center for the Veterans Fairweather Lodge Program. $400,000 to the Lawrence County Department of Planning and Community Development for its blight removal program. $200,000 to the Redevelopment Authority Read more

 

Sainato: Nearly $50,000 awarded to bolster Lawrence County probation services

(Jun 09, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, June 9 – Grant funding of $46,366 will enhance Lawrence County probation programs and services, state Rep. Chris Sainato announced today. Sainato, D-Lawrence, said the grant from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency will fund programs and resources that help the county steer offenders away from crime and toward more successful outcomes. “What happens during probation can strongly influence whether an offender makes a successful transition to work and the community or returns to a pattern of repeat crimes,” Sainato said. “Today’s funding is going to support Lawrence County’s probation officers and other staff as they work to help guide offenders back on the path to productive lives with their families – and away from the kind of destructive behaviors that lead to recidivism. “Taxpayers benefit from fewer incarcerations, and our community regains responsible wage earners who can contribute back to the economy.” Sainato said that in addition to the direct grant to benefit probation services, the county will benefit from nearly $50,000 in grant funding to the Adams County Children’s Advocacy Center, which will use the funding to train therapists in Lawrence and several other counties on specialized treatment for child victims of sexual abuse. Read more

 

Sainato, colleagues unveil bipartisan bills to benefit Pa. veterans

(Jun 09, 2021)

HARRISBURG, June 9 – Continuing his efforts to improve life for Pennsylvania’s veterans, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, joined fellow lawmakers today at Soldiers’ Grove to highlight a package of bills that would improve services for the commonwealth’s large veteran community. Sainato, Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, said the bi-partisan bill package, “For Those Who Served,” would expand state resources and make life easier for veterans and their families. “The package includes my bill to supplement the Veterans’ Trust Fund with $1 million from the billions Pennsylvania is receiving under the American Rescue Plan,” Sainato said. “As Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, I have seen firsthand how grants from the fund can provide veterans in need with transportation, housing and other essential services. Tapping into this federal funding is a unique opportunity that would directly benefit those who have served and sacrificed so much for us. “Our committee worked together, in true bi-partisan fashion, to approve these bills for the benefit of our heroes, and I’m hopeful we’ll see them soon passed and signed into law.” Sainato said some of the bills include: H.B. 1389 , which would strengthen the Veterans Trust Fund by supplementing it with $1 million in American Read more

 

Sainato: More than $136,000 awarded for renovation, repair of historic Lawrence County sites

(Jun 02, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, June 2 – State grants totaling $136,250 from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission will fund critical renovations for several Lawrence County historic sites to ensure their continued safe and efficient operation, state Rep. Chris Sainato announced today. Sainato, D-Lawrence, said the funding awarded under the Keystone Historic Preservation grant program will support needed electrical, cooling and masonry work, among other renovations. “Lawrence County has some beautiful old buildings that give us a unique landscape and showcase our region’s fascinating history,” Sainato said. “At the same time, many sites also welcome residents for practical activities, so keeping them safe for visitors is as important as preserving them for historical purposes. Securing these grants is going to help us accomplish both.” Sainato said the grants include the following: $100,000 to Hoyt Center for the Arts for a mechanical system project The project will increase the center’s capacity to host public programming in the Hoyt West Period House through installation of a VRF cooling system on the ground level and rehabilitation and enhancement of interior lighting, wiring and receptacles throughout. $31,250 to Human Services Center for office space improvements The project will allow the behavioral center to make needed structural improvements to the historic Read more

 

Sainato: $1.25 million awarded to help rehabilitate Lawrence County homes

(May 20, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, May 20 – Grant funding of $1.25 million will help bring safer living conditions for low-income residents in Lawrence County by financing needed renovations to owner-occupied homes, state Rep. Chris Sainato announced today. Sainato, D-Lawrence, said the funding under the HOME Investments Partnership Program will help some residents address code deficiencies that have prevented access to other home-related assistance programs. “The challenges of the past year have highlighted the importance of having a safe, secure place to call home,” Sainato said. “With the pandemic straining budgets everywhere, low-income residents have found it tougher than usual to make needed home repairs. In some cases, homes are facing code deficiencies that have prevented residents from accessing other important programs, such as weatherization assistance. Today’s funding is going to help them move forward with those repairs so they can protect their families.” Sainato said the grants include the following funding: $750,000 to the city of New Castle to rehabilitate 18 owner-occupied homes (to be administered by third-party provider Lawrence County Community Action Partnership). $500,000 to Lawrence County to rehabilitate 12 owner-occupied homes (with grant administration by third-party provider LCCAP). Eligibility will be owner-occupied homes deferred from the county’s Read more

 

Sainato: $75,000 awarded to help fund new canoe/kayak launch in New Castle

(Apr 13, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, April 13 – A $75,000 grant awarded by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission will help fund design and construction of a new canoe and kayak launch that will provide area boaters easier access to the Shenango River, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant to Human Services Center under the Boating Facility Grant Program will help finance the center’s plans to add the launch to its one-acre property located in New Castle. “We’re so fortunate here in Lawrence County to share our home with part of the Shenango River, which was recently named River of the Year by Pennsylvania voters,” Sainato said. “In addition to the natural beauty, the river provides a great source of healthy exercise for the many residents in our area who enjoy canoeing and kayaking. “Access to the river has not always been as convenient as it could be for many residents here in New Castle because the closest public boat launch facilities are several miles away. This funding is going to help bring those boaters one step closer to the water’s edge so they can spend less time commuting and more time doing what they love.” Sainato said that in addition to the launch, the project includes plans for the construction of an ADA-accessible fishing pier and installation of a small walking trail, picnic tables, benches and other minor site amenities. Read more

 

Sainato: District schools slated to receive nearly $32 million to keep students learning during pandemic

(Mar 30, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, March 30 – School districts in the 9th Legislative District are expected to receive approximately $31.7 million in federal funding to ensure programs, services and safety measures are in place as more students return to the classroom, state Rep. Chris Sainato announced today. Sainato, D-Lawrence, said the funding will help schools address a broad range of needs, from educational and building supplies to special programs that will counter learning loss and progress gaps resulting from the pandemic. “The pandemic created a slew of challenges for school districts, including how to keep kids engaged during a confusing and disruptive period and how to ensure a safe learning environment. As more of the school community becomes vaccinated and we see a full return to classroom instruction, districts will be focused on bringing students back up to speed and ensuring supports are in place for those who may have fallen behind. Securing this funding is going to help make that happen.” Sainato said allocations to school districts are as follows: Laurel School District - $1.4 million. Mohawk Area School District - $2.5 million. Neshannock Township School District – $1 million. New Castle Area School District - $18.1 million. Shenango Area School District - $2.9 million. Union Area School District - $1.8 million. Wilmington Area Read more

 

Sainato urges bars, restaurants to apply to COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program

(Mar 15, 2021)

NEW CASTLE, March 15 – The COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program is now open in Lawrence County, and state Rep. Chris Sainato is encouraging local bars, restaurants and other businesses in the hospitality industry to apply as soon as possible. “The pandemic’s impact has spared few businesses, but for the many mom-and-pop bars and restaurants in our community that have faithfully complied with mitigation measures, COVID has been devastating,” Sainato said. “Now, with the CHIRP grants available, these Lawrence County businesses so important to our community will have an opportunity to share in nearly $1 million in funding. “I encourage every eligible hospitality industry business in our community – bars, restaurants, caterers, food service businesses and others – to apply as soon possible to start the process of getting meaningful relief flowing. Today’s news that the administration will be loosening restrictions April 4 by increasing indoor dining capacity to 75 percent and permitting resumption of bar service and alcohol purchases without food should also help this critically important industry back on the path to economic health.” Sainato said eligible businesses may apply here for grant funding available in increments of $5,000 up to $25,000. To qualify, a business must: have a NAICS code beginning 721 or 722 in the hotel, motel, Read more

 

Sainato demands answers from state in vaccine rollout hearing

(Feb 08, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 8 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, demanded answers at a House Policy Committee meeting on the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, urging state officials to bring greater consistency and accountability to the process. Sainato cited missteps that have created logistical problems and questioned why the state does not have a centralized system in place. “At today’s vaccine rollout policy hearing, I demanded answers regarding why the state decided to adopt the CDC’s recommendations several weeks ago to expand the list of people eligible to get the vaccine when we did not have the assurance that there were enough doses coming in to take care of those people,” Sainato said. “We added about 4 million people to the eligible list, but with 160,000 or 175,000 people actually receiving vaccines, it will take months before we even get to the next round. Now, many first responders, frontline workers and eligible teachers in the classroom can’t even get the vaccine. We need accountability and transparency regarding how this poor decision was made – and how to prevent similar missteps in the future. “I also demanded answers regarding why there is no centralized system for vaccine distribution in place. Right now, vaccine distribution is a mess. There are so many older adults who have no computer access and who are unable to get on a list. It Read more

 

Sainato lauds passage of bill to involve National Guard in vaccine rollout

(Feb 05, 2021)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 5 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, applauded the unanimous House passage of a measure that would enlist the state National Guard to speed the state’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout. House Bill 326 originated in the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, and Sainato, who is Democratic chairman of the committee, said it is the first step toward shoring up a state rollout plan that has been sluggish and frustrating to residents. “The No. 1 issue in our state right now – and a matter we need to resolve before we can get our economy going and keep our residents healthy – is to get these COVID-19 vaccines in people’s arms and to do it as quickly as we can,” Sainato said. “I have been hearing from seniors and other residents with illnesses in our community who are eligible for the vaccine but can’t even get an appointment or get on a list to get the vaccine. It’s time to do something about that. “Later, there will be time to analyze what went wrong with the rollout. But now is not the time for finger pointing; now is the time to mobilize. We have one of the largest and most talented National Guards in the nation, and they are ready to help assist with the rollout and make it the efficient operation it needs to be. Passage of this legislation is going to be the first important step in that direction.” Read more

 

As Pa.’s vaccine rollout stumbles, House will vote on whether to turn it over to National Guard

(Feb 04, 2021)

Residents have been encountering frustration and delays over a vaccine rollout that is leaving some eligible residents without access even as their neighbors in adjacent counties are able to get the vaccine. Read more

 

Sainato: $10,000 grant will boost pre-k access to healthy food, agricultural ed
Oct 26, 2021

Sainato bill would extend disabled veteran tax exemption to surviving spouses
Oct 07, 2021

Sainato: Nearly $300,000 awarded to bolster pregnancy, postpartum supports for women in recovery
Oct 05, 2021

Bipartisan group advances legislation to benefit veterans in PA
Oct 04, 2021

Sainato: Nearly $385,000 awarded to help local students stay connected
Oct 01, 2021

Sainato co-hosts news conference highlighting free services for veterans
Sep 15, 2021

Sainato: New Castle elementary schools awarded more than $100,000 to boost access to fresh fruits and vegetables
Aug 04, 2021

Sainato: More than $200,000 awarded to modernize New Castle traffic signal
Jul 07, 2021

Sainato announces nearly $109,000 in fire, EMS grants
Jun 29, 2021

Sainato: $850,000 awarded to fund veteran housing, fight blight
Jun 10, 2021

Sainato: Nearly $50,000 awarded to bolster Lawrence County probation services
Jun 09, 2021

Sainato, colleagues unveil bipartisan bills to benefit Pa. veterans
Jun 09, 2021

Sainato: More than $136,000 awarded for renovation, repair of historic Lawrence County sites
Jun 02, 2021

Sainato: $1.25 million awarded to help rehabilitate Lawrence County homes
May 20, 2021

Sainato: $75,000 awarded to help fund new canoe/kayak launch in New Castle
Apr 13, 2021

Sainato: District schools slated to receive nearly $32 million to keep students learning during pandemic
Mar 30, 2021

Sainato urges bars, restaurants to apply to COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program
Mar 15, 2021

Sainato demands answers from state in vaccine rollout hearing
Feb 08, 2021

Sainato lauds passage of bill to involve National Guard in vaccine rollout
Feb 05, 2021

As Pa.’s vaccine rollout stumbles, House will vote on whether to turn it over to National Guard
Feb 04, 2021