Sainato: $335,000 to fund blight removal, housing counseling services for Lawrence County

(Aug 13, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, Aug. 13 – Funding totaling $335,000 to two area organizations will help address blight in Lawrence County and expand housing counseling services for residents, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the Lawrence County Department of Planning and Community will receive $300,000 for a blight removal program, while Housing Opportunities of Beaver County will receive $35,000 to expand housing counseling services for residents. The funding is administered by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency through the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund. “This funding is going to bring exciting developments that change the landscape, quite literally, for the better,” Sainato said. “Funding for the Lawrence County Blight Removal Program will identify neighborhoods where blight removal can kickstart private investment, which will work to rejuvenate the local economy. “At the same time, funding to the housing opportunities organization will allow it to expand its housing counseling to Lawrence County so that more of our residents here have the benefit of developing the solid skills and knowledge they need for successful homeownership. Securing this funding is going to open doors for more Lawrence County residents who need safe, secure housing,” Sainato said. Money comes into PHARE from three sources: Marcellus Shale Impact Fees, Realty Read more

 

Summer 2020 Health Care Report

(Aug 10, 2020)

Rep. Chris Sainato's Summer 2020 Health Care Report Read more

 

Sainato: Nearly $75,000 in funding to ensure area students have access to remote learning

(Aug 07, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, Aug. 7 – Several Lawrence County schools will receive $74,800 in grants to ensure students have the resources needed to access remote and online learning, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today.Sainato said the grants – administered by the state Department of Education through the Continuity of Education and Equity Grant program – include the following: Mohawk Area School District – $33,000 Union Area School District – $21,500 Lawrence County Career and Technical Center – $20,300 “As many classrooms remain closed during the pandemic, remote lessons are providing a lifeline allowing students to remain active and engaged in learning,” Sainato said. “Participating can be a huge challenge, however, for students with limited access to computers or internet access. This funding is going to help remove those barriers by ensuring students are on equal footing when it comes to having the necessary resources to succeed.” Sainato said schools may use the funding to purchase computer equipment, such as laptops, tablets, and internet hot spots, and to provide instructional materials, including paper lessons and coursework. Schools with the highest percentages of students lacking access to resources were given priority in receiving these grants. Read more

 

Nearly $84,000 in COVID safety funding to Lawrence County Career and Technical Center

(Aug 06, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, Aug. 6 – The Lawrence County Career and Technical Center is set to receive $83,699 in federal funding to ensure safe operations, while Union Area School District will receive a $21,500 Continuity of Education Equity Grant, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. The funding to Lawrence County CTC comes from the CARES Act, which authorizes governors to determine the educational use of Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Funds. “By supplying a steady stream of well-trained applicants, our career and tech centers meet an essential need for our working families and our economy,” Sainato said. “Thanks to this funding, students will be able to return to learning secure in the knowledge that administrators have implemented comprehensive measures to keep them safe.” 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 of 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 money has been allocated by the governor, and schools will be able to access the funds in the next week. A complete list of the funding to career and tech schools Read more

 

News release: Sainato: More than $33,500 to New Castle School of Trades for COVID safety

(Aug 03, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, Aug. 3 – Federal funding of $33,568 will help ensure students attending New Castle School of Trades enjoy the safest possible learning environment, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant – part of a package of $28 million in federal funding to postsecondary organizations statewide – will allow school administrators to put critical planning in place. “Securing this funding means that school officials will have a wide range of resources at their disposal – from purchasing personal protective equipment and sanitization supplies to erecting barriers and other structural safety modifications to investing in online equipment – to keep students learning in the safest possible environment. It’s a terrific investment in one of our most important resources – our young adults.” 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 socioeconomically disadvantaged students served by institutions. Read more

 

Summer 2020 Newsletter

(Aug 01, 2020)

Rep. Chris Sainato's Summer 2020 Newsletter. Read more

 

Sainato, Longietti call on governor to lift 25% capacity for restaurants, bars

(Jul 28, 2020)

HARRISBURG, July 28 – Calling it unnecessarily restrictive and damaging to the local economy, state Reps. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, and Mark Longietti, D-Mercer, have written to Gov. Tom Wolf urging him to lift his recent restriction imposing a 25% indoor capacity on restaurants and bars. The lawmakers’ letter calls on Wolf to restore the previous 50% capacity guidelines, saying the new restriction does more harm than good. “The governor is punishing all restaurants and bars for the failure of a few bad actors who are failing to comply with safety guidelines,” Sainato said. “The problem with that approach is that it hurts everyone while failing to get at the root of the problem. “It’s noncompliance with safety procedures – not a particular number of patrons – that jeopardizes community health. We should be focusing on cracking down on the bad apples, not enforcing an overreaching measure that threatens to drive our local restaurants and bars out of business.” Longietti agreed, saying “Reducing the maximum patron capacity to 25% won’t help keep anyone safer; it will merely threaten the viability of restaurants and bars that are trying to comply and do the right thing. “The restriction is especially difficult for our local restaurants and bars because they must compete with businesses in nearby Ohio, which are operating Read more

 

Sainato: $32 million to fund wastewater treatment plant upgrades

(Jul 22, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, July 22 – Combined grant and loan funding totaling $32 million will allow the New Castle Sanitation Authority to make major improvements to its wastewater treatment plant, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the funding from the Pennsylvania Infrastructure and Investment Authority – including approximately $19.13 million in grant money and a low-interest loan of about $12.87 million – will pay for important equipment renovations and upgrades. “Effective wastewater treatment is as important to public health as it is to the environment,” Sainato said. “In addition to keeping our waters safe for recreation and protecting beneficial plant and animal life, treatment prevents the environment from degrading and allowing harmful bacteria and chemicals to contaminate our drinking water. “The funding awarded today will permit the sanitation authority to make major improvements necessary to keep the plant operating at peak efficiency, including construction of a new anoxic tank and renovation of an activated sludge system and other equipment. It’s a terrific investment that will yield health and safety benefits for our community for years to come.” Sainato noted that an earlier phase of the project to upgrade aging equipment received Pennvest funding in July 2019. The grant is part of a package of $66 million in funding to water infrastructure Read more

 

Sainato: $8,000 grant to help guard against wildfire threat

(Jul 21, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, July 21 – An $8,000 grant to the Hickory Township Volunteer Fire Co. will help firefighters guard against the threat of wildfires and brushfires, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant from the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources will fund key resources at a time when they are most needed. “Hot, dry weather leaves our rural communities and forestland especially vulnerable to the risk of brush and wildfires, which under the right conditions can pose a grave danger to life and property,” Sainato said. “Our volunteer firefighters stand ready – as always – to protect us from the threat, even with limited resources. “This funding is welcome news because it should help the company pay for training, equipment such as mobile radios and water supply apparatus, and other resources that can keep our volunteers better equipped and better protected.” The grant is part of package of nearly $592,000 to 109 volunteer firefighting companies statewide. Recipients are selected based on vulnerability and adequacy of existing fire protection, and assistance is granted on a cost-share basis, with recipients supplying matching funds. More information is available by visiting this page . 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

 

Sainato: Grant of more than $102,000 for new senior living facility

(Jul 14, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, July 14 – A renovation project to convert several New Castle buildings into a new, state-of-the-art senior housing facility in Lawrence County got a boost today with approval of a $102,456 grant, announced state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence. Sainato said the grant approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority under the High Performance Building Program will help fund New Castle Real Estate LLC’s project to renovate four buildings into the future New Castle Wellness Center – a long-term senior housing facility with ancillary services, including up to 400 beds. “Our Lawrence County seniors deserve the safest, most habitable living environment we can provide,” Sainato said. “That means a facility designed with safety and comfort in mind, and one that incorporates state-of-the-art design and materials. “The funding awarded today will help ensure that the new facility provides the safest possible surroundings, that it complies with the highest possible standards for indoor air quality and energy efficiency, and that it accommodates the needs of all residents – from the most vulnerable to the hardiest. I can’t wait to see the new project take shape.” Sainato said the project will include rehabilitation of the former nursing school on the property and will consist of renovations to three multi-storied buildings and fourth single-story building, all totaling 188,870 Read more

 

Sainato: More than $3.3 million to combat area homelessness

(Jul 10, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, July 10 – Lawrence County Social Services will receive more than $3.35 million in funding to help district residents and those in surrounding counties who are struggling with homelessness or the threat of homelessness, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant – part of CARES Act funding provided through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – will help ensure that housing is available for residents and working families at a time when safe, affordable shelter is critical. “As the pandemic has swept through our state, the scourge of homelessness – once only a vague threat for so many hardworking families – is now a painful reality,” Sainato said. “Our working families are the backbone of our economy, and if our communities are to make a full economic recovery, it’s essential that all residents have a safe, secure place to call home. Securing this funding is going to help make that happen.” Sainato said that Lawrence County will share the grant with 14 other counties, including Beaver, Cameron, Centre, Clearfield, Clarion, Elk, Fayette, Forest, Greene, Jefferson, McKean, Potter, Venango and Warren counties. The grant is part of a package of nearly $19 million in funding to 52 counties statewide to help end or prevent homelessness caused by the pandemic. The funding is the first of two allocations of Emergency Read more

 

Sainato: Hoyt Art Center to benefit from nearly $2,000

(Jul 06, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, July 6 – A beloved Lawrence County museum and art center will receive $1,930 in funding to help support operations during the pandemic, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant to Arts and Education at the Hoyt – part of CARES Act funding awarded through th e Pennsylvania Council on the Arts – will ensure Hoyt can resume functioning as the community’s creative hub as restrictions are lifted. “The pandemic impacted just about every business and organization in our region, including our beloved Hoyt Art Center, which does so much to keep our community engaged,” Sainato said. “From exhibits and classes to youth programs, the center serves our need for arts education and creative outlets, gives expression to local voices and builds civic pride. Equally important, it creates jobs and helps support our local economy. “At a time when things still seem far from normal, residents being able to return to familiar programs and places at the Hoyt will remind us about our ability to endure, together, as a community. This funding is going to help make that happen.” Pennsylvania arts and cultural organizations received a total of $2.3 million in pandemic relief. Grants were awarded through both the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. More information about the funding is available here. Read more

 

An inconvenient lifesaver

(Jun 30, 2020)

You have no doubt seen the headlines about the increased spread of COVID-19 in Southern states, as well as in the nearby Pittsburgh area. Fortunately, Lawrence County has fared well during this recent spike, and we remain in the Green phase, meaning all businesses are allowed to be open, although some are operating at reduced capacities. I am sharing the graphic below to remind everyone of the guidelines for the Green phase. I am also echoing the Vice President, the Governor of Texas, the Governor of Ohio, and our own Governor in a bipartisan request that all Lawrence County residents wear a mask when they are within six feet of others and when they enter buildings other than their own homes. In fact, just like in Texas, our state requires mask-wearing by employees and customers in any place of business. Wearing a mask is an inconvenience. I often have to remind myself to put mine on when I make a trip to the grocery store or when I go to the floor of the House of Representatives to cast votes. Masks can be itchy, warm, and just plain uncomfortable. But new research has shown that wearing a mask significantly reduces the spread of COVID-19. It's true that a single virus particle is smaller than the holes in a mask, but the virus is almost always contained within a larger water droplet. In addition, overwhelming evidence proves wearing a mask does not pose a threat to oxygenation levels -- health care professionals wear masks all day for their entire careers. Read more

 

Sainato: Small business grant program accepting applications June 30

(Jun 29, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, June 29 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, is advising local small businesses impacted by COVID-19 that the Statewide Small Business Assistance Program will begin accepting applications Tuesday, June 30. “This grant program funded by the CARES Act is aimed at helping small businesses hurt by the pandemic get back on their feet,” Sainato said. “Eligible businesses can use the funding in a number of ways, from paying utility bills and rent accrued while closed to purchasing safety-related items and equipment. "There will be several rounds of funding under the program, with the first beginning tomorrow. I’m encouraging all eligible businesses in our community to apply.” Sainato said that to be eligible to apply, and business must: Have 25 or fewer full-time equivalent employees prior to Feb. 15, 2020. By physically located, certified to do business, and generate at least 51% of its revenues in Pennsylvania. Have annual revenue of $1 million or less prior to the impact of COVID-19. The program includes a total of $225 million in CARES Act funding: $100 million for small businesses hurt by COVID-19, $100 million for businesses owned and operated by socially and economically disadvantaged people and $25 million for loan deferrals and losses for lenders. Grants will range from $5,000 to $50,000, based on annual revenues. Read more

 

Sainato: Grant for nearly $20,000 to enhance stormwater management

(Jun 26, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, June 26 – A grant of $19,999 to the Lawrence County Conservation District will help the county better manage stormwater runoff by funding installation of a “green alley,” state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the grant from the state Department of Environmental Protection – which will fund both the project itself and workshops to educate residents about stormwater and green infrastructure – will address an ongoing issue affecting community health. “Stormwater runoff can affect every corner of our community, including alleyways,” Sainato said. “Because they’re often made of non-permeable materials like concrete or asphalt, paved alleys can generate polluted runoff that seeps into surrounding areas. “Converting these areas to ‘green alleys’ with the use of permeable materials transforms them into attractive spaces that absorb and filter stormwater runoff. The result is a cleaner, greener, safer environment for our residents.” The grant is part of a package of $434,168 in Environmental Education Grants to 55 projects that will engage youths and adults in environmental justice, climate change, and/or water quality improvement, expanding their understanding of these issues in Pennsylvania and providing skills to take responsible action to protect their environment. Read more

 

Spring 2020 Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Newsletter

(Jun 25, 2020)

Rep. Sainato's Spring 2020 Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee Newsletter. Read more

 

Sainato: More than $1.7 million to combat regional homelessness

(Jun 23, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, June 23 – Area families struggling with homelessness will benefit from federal funding of more than $1.72 million dedicated to increasing affordable housing opportunities, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said Lawrence County will distribute the funding – provided through the federal Emergency Solutions Grant program – to communities within the county as well as 19 other counties in the region. “Homelessness robs even the most loving and responsible families of the basics of a secure, promising life," Sainato said. "The condition is affecting more families than ever as our community copes with hardships created by the pandemic. “This funding is going to be incredibly useful in helping our communities fight homelessness by providing affordable housing, emergency shelter and other resources to residents who want only to return to productive lives in the community.” Sainato said the funding – administered by the state Department of Community and Economic Development – is part of a package of nearly $5.5 million in funding under the ESG program that will fund rapid rehousing, homelessness prevention, street outreach, and emergency shelter, among other resources. Priority for funding is given to applicants representing areas of the commonwealth that do not already receive a direct allocation of Emergency Solutions Grant funding from the Read more

 

Sainato encourages dairy farmers to apply to new federal program

(Jun 22, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, June 22 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, is encouraging dairy farmers who have suffered losses due to COVID-19 to apply for relief under a new federally funded program. The Dairy Indemnity Program – funded through the federal CARES Act and administered by the state Department of Agriculture – will distribute $15 million in funding to dairy farmers throughout the state who have sustained economic losses as a result of discarded or displaced milk during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Our dairy farmers are no strangers to adversity: for more than a decade they have worked to overcome extreme economic challenges posed by declining consumption and a shrinking market,” Sainato said. “Despite the odds, these farms manage to contribute billions to Pennsylvania’s economy. “When the pandemic struck, closing schools, restaurants and offices, it dealt an immediate, unexpected blow to farmers, forcing them to dump thousands of gallons of milk. The new Dairy Indemnity Program will provide a measure of relief to this important industry by offsetting some of those losses and helping farms continue operating. I’m urging all eligible farms to apply as soon as possible.” Sainato said any dairy farm that suffered losses because of discarded or displaced milk during the COVID-19 emergency disaster may apply for assistance. Farms with documented losses will receive a minimum of $1,500, Read more

 

$1.25 million to rehabilitate Lawrence County housing

(Jun 16, 2020)

NEW CASTLE, June 16 – Federal funding of $1.25 million will help ensure that more Lawrence County residents have safe places to call home, state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, announced today. Sainato said the funding from the federal HOME Investment Partnerships Program includes a $750,000 grant to Lawrence County for a project to rehabilitate 18 existing owner-occupied homes and a $500,000 grant to Shenango Township for a project to rehabilitate 12 owner-occupied homes to be administered by Lawrence County Community Service. “Our homes are our havens – places where we go to protect and care for our loved ones – and that’s especially true today, when the world feels like a more dangerous and unpredictable place,” Sainato said. “Unfortunately, when budgets are stretched thin, basic living expenses can quickly eat up money for special projects such as home renovations. “Thanks to this funding, those projects can go forward, and more families in our community will be able to come home to a safe place.” The funding – which the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development provided to the state Department of Community and Economic Development – is part of a package of $10 million in grants statewide under the HOME program, which is designed to expand and preserve housing for low- and very low-income families. Read more

 

Sainato: $335,000 to fund blight removal, housing counseling services for Lawrence County
Aug 13, 2020

Summer 2020 Health Care Report
Aug 10, 2020

Sainato: Nearly $75,000 in funding to ensure area students have access to remote learning
Aug 07, 2020

Nearly $84,000 in COVID safety funding to Lawrence County Career and Technical Center
Aug 06, 2020

News release: Sainato: More than $33,500 to New Castle School of Trades for COVID safety
Aug 03, 2020

Summer 2020 Newsletter
Aug 01, 2020

Sainato, Longietti call on governor to lift 25% capacity for restaurants, bars
Jul 28, 2020

Sainato: $32 million to fund wastewater treatment plant upgrades
Jul 22, 2020

Sainato: $8,000 grant to help guard against wildfire threat
Jul 21, 2020

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

Sainato: Grant of more than $102,000 for new senior living facility
Jul 14, 2020

Sainato: More than $3.3 million to combat area homelessness
Jul 10, 2020

Sainato: Hoyt Art Center to benefit from nearly $2,000
Jul 06, 2020

An inconvenient lifesaver
Jun 30, 2020

Sainato: Small business grant program accepting applications June 30
Jun 29, 2020

Sainato: Grant for nearly $20,000 to enhance stormwater management
Jun 26, 2020

Spring 2020 Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Newsletter
Jun 25, 2020

Sainato: More than $1.7 million to combat regional homelessness
Jun 23, 2020

Sainato encourages dairy farmers to apply to new federal program
Jun 22, 2020

$1.25 million to rehabilitate Lawrence County housing
Jun 16, 2020