Rep. Bill Kortz reports that he will host his annual Senior Fair from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oct. 13 at the Broughton Volunteer Fire Department in South Park. His fourth annual shred-it event will be held from 10 a.m. to noon Oct. 15 at the West Mifflin #3 Volunteer Fire Company in West Mifflin. Read more
HARRISBURG, July 1 – State Rep. Bill Kortz, D-Allegheny, announced that Port Vue Borough has been awarded a $100,000 grant for recreational opportunities to help build the PVAA Recreation Center. Kortz said the funds were awarded by Commonwealth Financing Authority under the state’s Greenways, Trails and Recreation Program. "Any time I can help secure funding for recreational opportunities in our communities, I do it," Kortz said. "Ballfields, playgrounds and outdoor space improve our region's qualify of life and this project will give our youth a dedicated facility in which to play and practice." The grant will be used to construct the 8,000-square-foot recreation center. There will be turf surfacing for youth football, soccer and cheerleading programs in a climate-controlled area. These programs serve more than 400 children a year. The total project cost is estimated at $287,500. The goal of the Greenways, Trails and Recreation Program is to promote greenways, recreational space, open space, trails, parks and river conservation. The Commonwealth Financing Authority is an independent state agency that administers several funding programs designed to help grow Pennsylvania’s economy, create jobs, and improve cultural and recreational assets in communities statewide. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz took to the House floor to support expanding gaming in Pennsylvania. Kortz says it would bring new revenue in to help with the budget crisis while also supporting social organizations, veterans groups, fire departments and tavern owners. Read more
At a Capitol press conference, Pa. state Bill Kortz comments on a bipartisan proposal to legalize video gaming terminals, or VGT's. Kortz says the changes would help struggling local taverns, VFW's, and fire companies make ends meet while also bringing in revenue for the commonwealth. Read more
HARRISBURG, May 3 – State Reps. Bill Kortz, D-Allegheny, and Karen Boback, R-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Wyoming, called for increased civics education in schools and were joined by state and national leaders in civics education to encourage the Legislature to support House Bill 1858, which would require Pennsylvania high school students to demonstrate a basic understanding of American history and civics as a condition of graduation. Several national studies and surveys have shown that students are unable to answer basic questions about the U.S. government and American history. To address this problem, Kortz and Boback have introduced House Bill 1858, which is adopted from the Civics Education Initiative. The bill would require high school students to pass a test on 100 basic facts of U.S. history and civics from the United States Citizenship Civics Test – the test all immigrants applying for U.S. citizenship must pass. "We need to reconsider our approach to civics education when only one out of four students can pass a citizenship test," Kortz said. "Knowledge of how our government works is essential for democracy to survive." "Our young people today face a crisis of knowledge with respect to their understanding of our country and its founding documents. It is incumbent on us, as lawmakers, to ensure that our education system provides schools with a mechanism to make certain that Pennsylvania’s students are adequately prepared to be Read more
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz honors South Park Eagles wrestlers Jake Wentzel and Greg Bulsak on their consecutive gold medals at the PIAA State Wrestling Championships. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz called for increased civics education in schools and were joined by state and national leaders in civics education to encourage the Legislature to support House Bill 1858, which would require Pennsylvania high school students to demonstrate a basic understanding of American history and civics as a condition of graduation. Read more
DRAVOSBURG, Feb. 25 – State Rep. Bill Kortz, D-Allegheny, said 2016 trout stocking schedules are now available in his constituent service offices. The schedule has an easy-to-read table that allows western Pennsylvania anglers to see an entire year’s worth of stockings at one time. The information is broken down by county, with stream sections and lakes listed alphabetically, and the type of trout being released at each location. "The state stocks our fishing locations from March through November," Kortz said. "The state stocking program shows the commitment to supporting the long tradition of fishing in Pennsylvania." Kortz added, "Remember, a fishing license is required for anyone age 16 or older." License information can be found on the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission website, http://fishandboat.com/license.htm . Kortz said the guides can be picked up at either of his constituent service offices – 751 Pittsburgh-McKeesport Blvd., Dravosburg or 5101 Old Clairton Road, Pittsburgh. Stocking schedules are also available on the Fish and Boat Commission's website, www.fish.state.pa.us . Choose "Fish" from the left menu and click on "Stocking." Read more
DRAVOSBURG, Feb. 23 – State Rep. Bill Kortz, D-Allegheny, reminds Pennsylvanians that there is a new state website which allows online voter registrations as well as changes in a person's current voting information. The website www.register.votespa.com allows new voters to instantly register through a secure website and also allows current registered voters change their address or party affiliation as well. "This new website has already allowed 100,000 voters to register online -- 60,000 of the registrations were for first-time voters," Kortz said. "One of the big drawbacks of our election process is the low voter turnout. I hope that as registration becomes easier, more citizens exercise their right to vote." The deadline to register for the April 26 primary is March 28 and the deadline to request an absentee ballot is April 19. Allegheny County residents can get all the information necessary for requesting and voting by absentee ballot at the county website -- www.alleghenycounty.us -- and clicking on the elections link located under the LIVE tab at the top of the page. Voter registration forms are also available at his office locations: 751 Pittsburgh-McKeesport Blvd., Dravosburg, or 5101 Old Clairton Road, Pittsburgh. Read more
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
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
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
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
In Pennsylvania, you can choose the company that generates your electricity – also known as your electric supplier. This means that you have the power to switch to a competing supplier who can offer the lowest price, or provide a specific service you want, such as “green” or renewable energy. Read more
State Reps. Bill Kortz and Marc Gergely, both D-Allegheny, blasted House Speaker Mike Turzai’s decision to cancel a scheduled day of session today in the midst of a six-month budget impasse.
“Since June 30, our schools, human services providers, counties and all Pennsylvanians have been waiting for the General Assembly to come to an agreement and finish the budget that was supposed to begin on July 1,” Kortz said. “It’s taken longer than expected, but last month all four caucuses and Governor Tom Wolf came to an agreement. Since that time, House Republicans have backed out of the agreed-to framework twice and now, as the Senate has sent most of the budget-related bills to the House, the speaker unexpectedly decides the House needs to take a day off. This is unacceptable and irresponsible.”
State Reps. Bill Kortz and Marc Gergely, both D-Allegheny, applauded this week’s Commonwealth Court ruling that the state Department of Education cannot redistribute gaming funds to charter schools during the current budget impasse.
“This was an issue brought to our attention because of the financial stress schools in our districts were under, thanks in part to the lack of a state budget and required payments the districts had to make to charter schools,” Gergely said. “It’s a simple matter of fairness, and the court system made the right ruling. I’m proud that Representative Kortz and I were among the first to bring this issue of fairness up with the state.”
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz speaks on the House floor in support of expanding video gambling to small clubs and taverns. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz speaks on a House Resolution designating the month of November 2015 as "Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month" in Pennsylvania. Kortz is a co-chair of the Alzheimer's Caucus. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz speaks against the GOP pension plan that will devastate Pennsylvania public workers while not providing any relief to the state's pension problems. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Bill Kortz says the GOP-led changes to the state's pension system puts women more at risk of losing their benefits and hurts families in the process, while bringing no relief to Pennsylvania's pension debt problems. Read more
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