PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 21 – State Rep. Joanna McClinton, D-Phila./Delaware, will co-host a weekly radio program from 11 a.m. to noon every Thursday on radio station WTTM, 1680 AM. The program, entitled "Voices from the Inside," will focus on the state's prison system and reducing crime. McClinton will be joined by co-hosts state Rep. Leslie Acosta, D-Phila., Esteban Cabrera and author Hugh Taft-Morales. "I am excited to have this opportunity to discuss our criminal justice system," McClinton said. "This new program will offer a voice to those currently incarcerated and will promote the sharing of ideas between prisoners and us on the outside. Thanks to Rep. Acosta, who developed the idea and invited me to participate in such a meaningful program. "By meeting those currently in prison, I hope that the listeners will understand the need for changes and improvements in our current system. We need to establish more humane methods to house our prisoners and work with them so they can be rehabilitated and can return to society and contribute. We waste so much money incarcerating those who have committed minor offenses and by locking them up for extended periods of time, we make it harder for them to blend back in to society and hold a meaningful job. "Additionally, we will be discussing community programs which may reduce violence and crime." The program will air live at 11 a.m. every Thursday on 1680 AM, and it can also Read more
HARRISBURG, Dec. 9 – The House Transportation Committee today amended and reported out a bill, authored by state Rep. Mike Schlossberg, D-Lehigh, to strengthen provisions intended to keep infants safe while traveling in a vehicle.
"On Monday, at a public hearing held by the House Transportation Committee, I was pleased to see wide, bipartisan support for efforts to improve child safety in Pennsylvania," Schlossberg said. "After a productive and frank discussion, it was clear that there was sufficient support to strengthen my bill by amending it to offer even better protections for our youngest and most vulnerable citizens. I fully support that effort."
House Bill 1551, which originally would have required children younger than 1 to be secured in a rear-facing car seat, was amended by the committee to require children to be secured in a rear-facing car seat while in a vehicle until age 2 unless otherwise stated by the manufacturer’s specification of the car seat in use.
Schlossberg noted that this change to his bill follows recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics. During the House Transportation public hearing, Ted Leonard, executive director of the Pennsylvania AAA Federation, voiced AAA’s support for efforts to enhance the requirement to secure children under age 2 in rear-facing car seats or until that child reaches the maximum height and weight for the car seat as noted by the manufacturer.
"As a father of two young children, I find it hard to belie Read more
HARRISBURG, Dec. 7 – State Rep. Harry Readshaw, D-Allegheny, has introduced H.B 1692, which would make it easier for family members to commit a loved one for drug and/or alcohol treatment.
“Too many families watch their loved ones deal with alcohol or drug abuse problems and can only standby while they spiral into despair, or worse,” Readshaw said. “I have been working with family members, law enforcement, the district attorney, the minor courts and others to ensure that my bill would offer remedies for families seeking help for their loved one.
"I introduced this bill at the request of my friend, a constituent who recently lost his son because of a drug overdose," he added.
Readshaw said that Pennsylvania families are the front lines of the opiate epidemic in this Commonwealth, and this bill is an effort to provide families with another avenue of resources.
House Bill 1692 would provide for involuntary treatment requirements and procedures for individuals suffering from alcohol and other drug abuse; and imposing duties on the Department of Health and the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs. Presuming the person has a reasonable benefit of recovery and the individual presents an imminent danger or imminent threat of danger to self, family or others as a result of alcohol and other drug abuse, or there exists a substantial likelihood of such a threat in the near future, a family member would be able to petition the Court of Common Pleas to initiate proceedings for in Read more
PITTSBURGH, Dec. 2 – State Rep. Harry Readshaw, D-Allegheny announced the state's heating assistance program, LIHEAP, is accepting applications for the winter.
The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program provides federal aid to eligible families to help pay winter heating bills and cover emergency heating equipment needs.
"LIHEAP ensures that qualified households can pay for their heating costs, such as gas, oil or electricity," Readshaw said. "Emergency funds are also available for households without heat or fuel, or those facing cut-off from a supplier.
"My staff can help complete the application."
Household income limits to qualify vary according to family size:
Household Size Maximum Income
The household income level increases by an additional $6,240 for each additional person.
"Since this program is based on federal money, the state budget impasse should not affect the funding for this program," Readshaw said.
Applications also can be completed online at www.compass.state.pa.us, and can be obtained at local county assistance offices, which can be found at www.alleghenycounty.us/dhs/CAO-locations.aspx.
HARRISBURG, Nov. 16 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, and state Rep. Tom Murt, R-Montgomery/Phila., announced today that they will host a private advance screening of the film “Spotlight” on Tuesday, Nov. 17 at the Midtown Cinema, 250 Reilly St. The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape and Turning Point are the event sponsors.
A complimentary reception will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., prior to the movie. Remarks will be offered by the sponsors and hosts in support of legislation that would modify the Pennsylvania statute of limitations to allow victims to seek civil action against abusers and the institutions that shield them.
“Spotlight” is the true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child sexual abuse and cover-up within the local Boston Archdiocese.
More information about the event is available by contacting Rozzi’s Harrisburg office at (717) 783-3290. To reserve tickets, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/private-advance-screening-of-spotlight-tickets-19499631924. Seating is limited.
HARRISBURG, Oct. 28 – State Rep. Harry Readshaw, D-Allegheny, will host a flu shot clinic from 10 a.m. to noon on Thursday, Nov. 5 at Concord Presbyterian Church, 1907 Brownsville Road, Pittsburgh, 15210.
Pneumonia shots also will be available.
"The earlier you can get a flu shot, the longer you are protected through the flu season," Readshaw said. "It is important to remember that flu is not just a nuisance. It can be a serious, even fatal, illness, especially for those young children, elderly and anyone who may have a weaker immune system."
While the flu vaccinations are not free, the costs are covered by all Medicare Part B plans as well as many other medical insurance plans. Vaccination recipients must bring their insurance cards when they get their shots.
Readshaw reminds people who may have the flu to see a doctor as quickly as possible. There are treatments which may lessen the severity of the illness if taken quickly enough.
HARRISBURG, July 10 – The state House of Representatives today unanimously passed, and sent to Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk, legislation including language sponsored by Rep. Marty Flynn that would establish an industrial hemp research pilot program in Pennsylvania. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, July 8 – State Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio, D-Montgomery/Phila., today announced the approval of a $2.05 million Commonwealth Financing Authority grant to provide financial assistance for improvements along City Avenue between 50 th and 63 rd streets. The improvements, which qualified under CFA’s multimodal grant allocations, will include new drainage, turning lanes, crosswalks, signal upgrades and lighting. “Revitalization of the City Avenue Corridor has already begun, thanks to new zoning in both Philadelphia and Lower Merion Township and ongoing expansion at Saint Joseph’s University,” DeLissio said. “This ongoing revitalization has been hindered by traffic, drainage and safety issues that this City Avenue Project will address with the help of this grant. “This extremely busy federal highway that is maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is used by thousands of residents and visitors travelling on foot, bicycle, buses and trains to attend classes, work and shop along this section of City Avenue. Greatly improving safety issues for all travelers is a key aspect of this project. “I use City Avenue frequently and can personally attest to the challenges of navigating this corridor in its present state. “This generous grant is a testament to how valuable our community is to the commonwealth,” DeLissio said. Read more
HARRISBURG, July 8 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, has introduced a resolution that would urge the governor and attorney general to initiate a lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies responsible for causing the opioid epidemic. Caltagirone said the aim of H.R. 943 is to hold pharmaceutical companies accountable, close the floodgates of new addicts pouring into our prison and health care systems, and recover the costs of addiction treatment. "Despite being aware that prolonged use of opioids can lead to addiction, certain pharmaceutical companies chose to put profits before patients," Caltagirone said. "Marketing efforts by these companies -- and not any medical breakthrough -- rationalized prescribing opioids for chronic pain and reversed the medical community’s understanding of the dangers of widespread opioid use. "Some companies’ sales pitches included claims that the risk of addiction was less than 1 percent, despite several studies to the contrary from as early as 1992. These tactics were effective," he said. According to the Centers for Disease Control, U.S. sales of prescription opioids quadrupled between 1999 and 2014, even as the resulting prescription-related opioid deaths followed the same trend. "To this day, certain pharmaceutical companies are engaged in fraud, conspiracy and negligence in the development and marketing of these drugs. These tactics have resulted in billions of dollars in Read more
EBENSBURG, July 8 – The sniper-induced deaths of five Dallas police officers underscore why state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, will soon unveil “Blue Lives Matter” legislation designed to put attacks on police and corrections officers on par with ethnic hate crimes. Burns, whose legislation was already in the production pipeline, plans to introduce his bill and seek House co-sponsors as early as Monday. “I respect the difficult job police and corrections officers perform keeping us safe from criminals and I’m appalled that all too often, officers themselves are targeted for assault, ambush or – as we found out in Dallas – death,” Burns said. “If ever there was a group in need of being a protected class, it’s those who put their lives on the line every day to keep the rest of us safe from the criminal element.” Burns said cowardly acts like those perpetrated in Dallas against unsuspecting police officers warrant stiff punishment and a clear message needs to be sent that such targeting will not be legally tolerated. Burns’ bill seeks to give law enforcement officers of the commonwealth or any of its political subdivisions, as well as corrections officers at state or county institutions, protected status under the state’s ethnic intimidation law. As such, the legislation would give them the same treatment as race, color, religion or national origin when it comes to crimes motivated by Read more
HARRISBURG, July 7 – State Rep. Joanna McClinton said a Cobbs Creek teenager has been awarded a $1,000 college scholarship from the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus. The PLBC recognized 10 Pennsylvania high school seniors as scholarship recipients last week during a program at the state Capitol. One winner is from McClinton's district: Ricardo Burton Jr. of Cobbs Creek, who will attend Temple University this fall. "I am incredibly pleased to have presented Ricardo one the scholarships from the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus," McClinton said. "The scholarships are the caucus' way to help make higher education a reality for hardworking students of color in Pennsylvania, and this young man certainly fits the bill. I wish him much success as he embarks on his future academic plans." Burton graduated from Franklin Learning Center in June with a 3.5 grade-point average. He was active in sports and other extracurricular activities and community service, while holding down a part-time job. Burton plans to study business management at Temple. The scholarship program was initiated in 2010. Students are selected based upon their academic success, leadership, extracurricular and community participation, and financial need. "This scholarship program is an excellent opportunity to encourage minority students to pursue a higher education, while also providing incentive for students who are still in high school," McClinton Read more
PHILADELPHIA, July 7 – State Rep. Kevin Boyle, D-Phila./Mont., is hosting two events at his Fox Chase office during the month of July. A Department Service officer from the American Legion will be available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, July 18th., in Boyle’s district office at 7801 Hasbrook Ave in Fox Chase to assist with Veteran service issues . The service officer is able to answer questions and offer assistance in completing paperwork for Veterans’ services. Appointments are available and walk-ins are accepted. Rep. Boyle will also be partnering with the Fox Chase Cancer Center to host his annual mobile mammography event outside of his district office at 7801 Hasbrook Ave in Fox Chase. Women interested in receiving a breast screening are required to make an appointment . Appointments are available starting at 9 a.m. Additional requirements include: Must be 40 or older. Name and address of one of your doctors. Prescription from your doctor. May not be breast feeding nor have breast fed within the last nine months. Must not have had a breast cancer diagnosis within the past three years. Must not be under treatment for breast cancer. Must not have had a mammogram in 12 months. Must be able to board the van and stand while being examined. For more information on either event, please call his district office at 215-695-1016. ### CONTACT: Amanda Zellner Phone: 215-331-2600 Email: email@example.com Read more
ERIE, July 7 – State Rep. Ryan A. Bizzarro, D-Erie, said he is pleased to honor Dr. Wei-Shin Lai with a House of Representatives citation for her recognition as Entrepreneur of the Year, awarded annually by Ernst & Young. Lai, CEO of AcousticSheep LLC, was presented with the EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2016 Award in the Retail and Consumer Products category in the Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia region. “Our community is very proud of Dr. Lai’s recent accomplishments. This citation is just one way of showing that her recognition was not only noticed, but also applauded by everyone in Erie, as well as the House of Representatives,” Bizzarro said. After winning the regional award, Lai is now eligible for consideration for the Entrepreneur of the Year national award, hosted in Palm Springs, Calif., in November. “It is great knowing that so much innovation and creative thinking is happening within the Third District. We are very pleased to have Acoustic Sheep headquartered right up the road from us, and wish nothing but continued success for Dr. Lai and her colleagues.” AcousticSheep is an Erie-based company which strives to “create a world of happy, healthy and well-rested people with its comfortable headphones, allowing for easy sleep and enjoyable exercise. The company was formed in 2007 by Lai and her husband. Read more
SCRANTON, July 6 – Older residents with questions about Medicare or health insurance coverage should visit state Rep. Marty Flynn’s office during his monthly outreach Monday, July 11. Read more
HARRISBURG, July 6 – State Rep. Joseph Petrarca, D-Westmoreland/Armstrong/Indiana, today introduced his bill to abolish the gasoline tax increases slated for next year and beyond. "Gas prices are an important part of the discussion as tens of thousands of Pennsylvanians take to the roads for vacations this summer," Petrarca said. "And while gas prices might be falling, there's a limit to how far the prices can drop because of the amount of state and federal taxes imposed on each gallon of gas." Pennsylvania collects 51.4 cents on each gallon of gas sold in the commonwealth. That's nearly double the average collected nationwide. The latest state gasoline tax increase, expected to be as much as 10 cents in January, is the result of a law Gov. Tom Corbett signed in 2013 to uncap the Oil Company Franchise Tax, the tax on wholesale gasoline purchases. Although the OCFT is a tax on wholesalers, the tax has been passed down to drivers at the pump. Petrarca's bill would cancel the statutorily required January increase, keeping the wholesale price level, effectively preventing future gasoline tax increases based on this formula. "I did not support the 2013 law because it was going to increase gasoline prices, and now it's expected to increase them by another 10 cents in January. An increase in the gas tax hurts all of us, but especially for people on limited means or who live on fixed incomes. Pennsylvania already has the highest Read more
PHILADELPHIA, July 5 – State Rep. Vanessa L. Brown, D-Phila., will host an informational luncheon for local residents who currently own or are looking to start a small business. The lunch will be held at 1:30 p.m. Thursday, July 14 at the Dornsife Center for Neighborhood Partnerships, 3509 Spring Garden St. The luncheon is designed to help local residents navigate state regulations as they expand, start or relocate small business in Pennsylvania. Local business and financial institutions will be on hand to answer questions and offer advice, as well. "This is a great opportunity for those looking to increase business and those considering, or in the process of, starting a small business," Brown said. "There is a lot of state assistance for current and new businesses, including grants and low-interest loans. Minority businesses can also learn about special state programs that allow minority-run businesses to compete in the state bidding process." Although the lunch is free, an RSVP is required. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (215) 879-6615 . In addition to the business information, Brown's staff will be available to assist with other state programs, such as CHIP and Medicaid. ### Read more
HARRISBURG, July 6 – State Rep. Mike Hanna, D-Centre/Clinton, is reminding and encouraging residents in the 76 th District to participate in a concealed carry seminar from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, July 19 at the Milesburg Community Center. Pre-registration is required for the event. Hanna said this educational seminar will teach gun owners how to apply for and receive a concealed carry permit. “Everyone should learn the facts about Pennsylvania’s concealed carry laws,” Hanna said. “My event in Clinton County was a huge success and I am eager to hold a second seminar on this topic. This is an excellent opportunity for residents to learn their rights and responsibilities.” Hanna said there is no charge for the event, but pre-registration is required. Residents may register online at www.pahouse.com/hanna or by calling Hanna’s district offices in Milesburg at 814-353-8780 or Lock Haven at 570-748-5480 . The Milesburg Community Center is located at 101 Mill St., Milesburg, PA 16823. Read more
NANTICOKE, July 6 – State Rep. Gerald Mullery, D-Luzerne, announced he will offer constituent outreach in July at various locations throughout the 119th Legislative District. The schedule is as follows: 10 a.m. to noon July 19, Nanticoke Active Adult Senior Center, 145 E. Green St., Nanticoke. 10 a.m. to noon July 20, White Haven Borough Building, 312 Main St., White Haven. 10 a.m. to noon July 21, Plymouth Active Adult Center, 160 E. Main St., Plymouth. 10 a.m. to noon July 26, Mountain Top Active Adult Center, 460 S. Main Road, Mountain Top. Residents can receive help on a variety of state matters, including the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program, the PACE/PACENET prescription drug program for seniors, unemployment compensation, hunting and fishing licenses, the Children's Health Insurance Program, consumer protection, and many more. Mullery said constituents may visit his district office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday at 156 S. Market St., Nanticoke. The number is 570-740-7031. Residents can also stop by his Freeland office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday at 532 Centre St. The number is 570-636-3500. Read more
State Rep. Vanessa Lowery, D-Phila., said she is pleased to announce that Fairmont Park at Kelly Drive is getting spruced up because of a state grant totaling $180,000. The grant is being given to the city's Department of Parks and Recreation to aid in the upgrades at the park. Brown said the funding comes from the Commonwealth Financing Authority and is made available through the local share account established in the state gaming law. “The awarding of this funding is major boost to the city of Philadelphia because Fairmont Park is used literally by thousands of people on a daily basis. The revitalization project will enhance economic development and contribute to the growth of our city,” Brown said. The Commonwealth Financing Authority administers and finances projects and is an independent agency created by the legislature. The agency oversees the state’s Building PA, Business in Our Sites, PennWorks, New PA Venture, Capitol Investment, New Pennsylvania Venture Guarantee, Tax Increment Financing Guarantee, Second Stage Loan and other programs. These programs are aimed at using targeted state investments for economic development in all regions of the state. To find out more about CFA programs, visit www.newpa.com . Read more
State Rep. Leanne Krueger-Braneky, D-Delaware, today announced three grants for Aston Township totaling $882,525 from the Commonwealth Financing Authority’s Act 13 Program.
“This funding will be used to help complete projects vital to Aston Township and the entire 161st Legislative District,” Krueger-Braneky said. “I look forward to seeing the improvements and the economic and environmental benefits they will provide for our community.”
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