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Caltagirone introduces bill to eliminate school property taxes for struggling seniors

Caltagirone: Recycling plant creating 100+ local jobs

(Oct 04, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Thomas Caltagirone joined the House Democratic Policy Committee to discuss the importance of discarding single-use plastics properly. He explained how recycling is bringing more than a hundred jobs to the Reading area. Read more

 

Reps. Caltagirone and Rozzi, Sen. Schwank announce more than $250,000 in grant money for Berks County

(Sep 17, 2019)

Rep. Thomas Caltagirone announced $252,821 in grant funding has been approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority to support recreation improvement efforts in Berks County. Read more

 

Caltagirone announces more than $800,000 in grants for Berks County

(Sep 16, 2019)

State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone announced today that six grants totaling $811,639 had been awarded to Berks County initiatives through the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency and the Victims’ Services Advisory Committee. Read more

 

Caltagirone Discusses Solutions To Juvenile Justice System

(Sep 11, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Thomas Caltagirone joined the House Democratic Policy Committee in Philadelphia to discuss keeping children out of the criminal justice system through community youth courts. He explains the work that needs to be done to ensure young people receive the help they need to stay on the right path. Read more

 

Caltagirone working to update schools, preserve health of students

(Sep 05, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Thomas Caltagirone joined the House Democratic Policy Committee to discuss the need for funding to update aging school buildings across the commonwealth. Read more

 

Caltagirone announces more than $174,000 in grants for children, schools in Reading

(Aug 29, 2019)

Reading School District was awarded $164,223, while I-Lead Charter School in Reading was awarded $10,018 through the Assistance of Homeless Children & Youth Hurricane Education Recovery grants. Read more

 

Caltagirone to hold free paper shredding event in Reading

(Aug 19, 2019)

The event will take place from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 7 in the parking lot of Tom Masano Auto Retailers USA at 841 W. Wyomissing Blvd. in Reading. Read more

 

Caltagirone Working for Environmental Justice

(Aug 14, 2019)

Democratic Chairman of the House Urban Affairs Committee Rep. Tom Caltagirone attended a public hearing about environmental justice in an effort to improve industrial remediation and reducing air, water and soil pollution in Pennsylvania’s low-income and minority communities. Read more

 

Caltagirone announces $1.5 million grant for Reading project

(Aug 01, 2019)

The $1.5 million grant is expected to fund repairs to terra-cotta units and the replacement of cracked marble panels. The building’s current roof, which has deteriorated, will be replaced to prevent water from entering the building. Read more

 

Down Payment Assistance Program to be introduced in Reading with funding help from state

(Jul 22, 2019)

READING, July 22 – State Rep. Tom Caltagirone, D-Berks, today announced that the Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Berks Inc. has been selected to receive support from the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency to help more city residents achieve homeownership. “I’m thrilled to see state support for a program to help make homeownership a reality for hard-working families and individuals in the city of Reading,” Caltagirone said. “Purchasing a home can be out-of-reach for some, but the Down Payment Assistance Program will enable low- to moderate-income members of our community clear the hurdle of pulling together funds for a down payment. “This program will help make dreams a reality in our community.” Caltagirone said NHS has been awarded $150,000 in funding from the statewide housing trust fund known as PHARE, to implement the program. NHS will use those Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement funds to introduce a Down Payment Assistance Program in the city of Reading. The program will use the strengths and expertise of private and public sector partners to assist low- to moderate-income borrowers achieve the dream of homeownership. PHARE, which is managed by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, was established in 2010 to provide the mechanism to allocate certain state or federal funds to assist with the creation, rehabilitation and support of affordable housing throughout Read more

 

Reading High awarded environmental awareness grant

(Jun 28, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 28 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, announced today Reading High School has been awarded a $3,000 grant for environmental education from the state Department of Environmental Protection. The grant will help the school expand its STEAM and environmental education programs, while transforming its interior courtyard into a Living Learning Laboratory. Students and faculty of the school’s Green Committee made plans to redesign the space with a habitat garden and living environmental lab for outdoor classes. “It’s exciting to see the organization and planning efforts of Reading High School’s students and faculty pay off in the form of this grant,” Caltagirone said. “This project will help transform an under-utilized area of the school as well as bolster the type of educational programs Reading High can provide. “The school has found a way to adapt to changing times, taking students outside a traditional classroom and exposing them to the type of programs that will better prepare them for the real world.” The Environmental Education Grant Program awards money each year to support environmental education efforts. DEP has awarded more than $10 million in grants throughout Pennsylvania since the program began in 1993. Public and private schools, colleges and universities, non-profit organizations and businesses can all apply through the program. Read more

 

Caltagirone statement on passage of 2019-20 budget

(Jun 25, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 25 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, issued the following statement about today’s passage of H.B. 790 , the 2019-20 budget. “With every budget we work to find a compromise in order to best serve Pennsylvanians,” Caltagirone said. “Although I am extremely disappointed in not having any business tax credits or additional means of funding in place for pediatric cancer centers, this budget does a lot of good. My bill would have allocated $10 million in tax credits to businesses per year for the next 10 years to ensure that our children do not have to suffer from this disease as they have in the past. Pediatric cancer is the leading cause of death by disease among children in the United States between 1 and 14 years old, and not including any way to address this issue for our most vulnerable children is quite concerning. “The silver lining to this budget is our investments in our education and schools. Governor Mifflin School District will receive $6.6 million next year, a 3.5% increase, while Reading School District will see a 3.8% increase up to $145 million for basic education funding. Special education funding will also increase to approximately $2.3 million for Governor Mifflin, a 6.1% increase and Reading will have an increase of 9.9% at $13 million. I’m looking forward to seeing what our school districts can do with these additional resources and delighted that they get the chance. “Ultimately, Read more

 

Caltagirone: Traffic signal tax exemption needs clarification

(Jun 18, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 18 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, today announced that H.B. 1168 has been approved by the House Finance Committee. “This bill is all about fixing an interpretation of tax exemption for traffic signals,” Caltagirone said. “I want to make sure that our local municipalities are protected from paying hidden fees to collect more revenue. The way that the law is currently being interpreted leads to higher costs for our local municipalities. We need to clarify the language of this law so that costs continue to stay low for the maintenance and installation of traffic signals. In my opinion, the current narrow interpretation is absurd.” The tax code provides an exemption from the state Sales and Use Tax for traffic signals as long as the traffic signal will be transferred to a tax-exempt governmental entity. In the past, the Department of Revenue exempted all the materials used to install traffic signals, but under the last administration the department narrowed the interpretation to only exempt the light assembly – the housing that holds the red, yellow and green light. More information on this or other state-related matters is available by contacting Caltagirone’s district office at 610-376-1529. ### CONTACT: Daniel Bixler House Democratic Communications Office Phone: 717-787-7895 ext. 6221 Email: dbixler@pahouse.net Read more

 

Caltagirone applauds Wolf administration for tax credits

(Jun 18, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 18 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, today thanked Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration for its support of rehabilitation projects in Berks County. “These Historic Preservation Tax Credits will go a long way toward rehabilitating a vacant office building, and turning a separate industrial building into apartments for local artists,” Caltagirone said. “I want to thank Governor Tom Wolf, Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis Davin, and Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission Executive Director Andrea Lowery for putting our communities first and investing in projects that will revitalize historic spaces and create new opportunities right in our district.” A $200,000 tax credit has been awarded to Thomas A. Willson Co. in Reading, to rehabilitate an industrial building into apartments for artists in the GoggleWorks complex. Another $50,000 tax credit has been allocated to Corbit Brothers Building in Reading, to upgrade an office building in the Callowhill Historic District. For more information about historic preservation or community development in Pennsylvania, visit the PHMC website or the DCED website . ### CONTACT: Daniel Bixler House Democratic Communications Office Phone: 717-787-7895 ext. 6221 Email: dbixler@pahouse.net Read more

 

Caltagirone praises Urban Affairs for reporting bills out of committee

(Jun 12, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 12 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, and Democratic chair of the House Urban Affairs Committee, today gave his thanks to the committee for reporting his bills out of committee with overwhelming support. Caltagirone’s two-bill package would accomplish two goals: House Bill 896 would expand the eligibility criteria for the Neighborhood Assistance Program to include homeless housing assistance projects located within land bank jurisdictions. House Bill 897 would expand the power of existing land banks to enter into partnerships with organizations in the private sector to create local solutions to address the lack of housing for the homeless population within their communities and would exempt all land bank transactions from both state and local realty transfer taxes. “I want to thank my colleagues for their support on this legislation,” Caltagirone said. “Between the two bills that I have sponsored, I truly believe that we can make a difference fighting against blight and homelessness across our state. Several other states have passed creative solutions to alleviating chronic poverty and the homelessness that follows. It is time Pennsylvania joins with them by working on substantive solutions tailored to our unique needs.” The Joint State Government Commission's 2016 study on homelessness concluded that one of the primary causes of homelessness is a lack of affordable housing. While some can take Read more

 

Caltagirone announces state grant awarded to Olivet Boys & Girls Club of Reading

(May 01, 2019)

READING, May 1 – State Rep. Tom Caltagirone, D-Berks, announced that the Olivet Boys & Girls Club of Reading received a competitive state grant for community-based programs aimed at reducing violence. The Community Violence Prevention/Reduction Grant program awarded the Olivet Boys & Girls Club Youth Development program $350,594 in grant monies. “My office worked closely with Olivet Boys & Girls Club of Reading on its grant application. I am very pleased that the application was successful. Nothing is more important than our children’s safety,” Caltagirone said. Caltagirone said the grant was awarded by the School Safety and Security Committee, which is under the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. Read more

 

Caltagirone introduces bill to eliminate school property taxes for struggling seniors

(Apr 15, 2019)

HARRISBURG, April 15 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, announced today that he has introduced a bill that would eliminate school property taxes for Pennsylvania seniors who qualify under the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program. House Bill 1247 would aid struggling senior homeowners who qualify under the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program by paying for all their school property taxes. This legislation would eliminate the cap on the maximum rebate allowed under the program. Funding for this proposal would come from the State Lottery Fund, the Property Tax Relief Fund and the General Fund. “Seniors living on fixed incomes find it difficult to pay for school taxes,” Caltagirone said. “They’re finding they can’t afford to live in the homes in which they raised their children. It’s unfair. “It’s time to help out our seniors who’ve shouldered their share of the tax burden for years.” People who qualify for the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program are 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 half of Social Security income is excluded. Spouses, personal representatives or estates may also file rebate claims on behalf of claimants who lived at least one day in 2017 and meet all other eligibility criteria. The maximum standard rebate is $650, but supplemental rebates for qualifying homeowners can boost rebates Read more

 

Caltagirone to hold free paper shredding event

(Apr 15, 2019)

READING, April 15 – State Rep. Tom Caltagirone will host a free paper shredding event on April 27. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to noon April 27 at the parking lot at Tom Masano Auto Retailers USA at 841 E. Wyomissing Blvd., Reading 19611. “I want to help my neighbors protect themselves from identity theft,” said Caltagirone, D-Berks. “While the incidences of internet identity theft are growing, people still are more likely to become victims by more traditional means, such as improperly discarding credit card data or other personal information. That’s why I’m pleased to be able to make this free service easily available for residents.” Residents can bring up to three bags or boxes of paper containing personal information – such as canceled or unused checks, bank or credit card statements or tax records – to have it shredded on site. Anyone with questions may call Caltagirone’s office at (610) 376-1529 . Read more

 

Reading company receives CFA grant

(Mar 26, 2019)

HARRISBURG, March 26 – Simpler Way Nutritionals LLC was awarded a state grant to develop value-added process for developing infant formula and nutraceutical products from Pennsylvania-sourced milk, state Reps. Tom Caltagirone and Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, announced today. The $460,375 grant will help Simpler Way Nutritionals LLC to produce products that will enable the consumer to easily determine the source of the infant formula and nutraceutical products, and assure them that their purchases result from a process that promotes animal health. The project includes funds for research, development and marketing. “Parents from all over the world will feel secure feeding their babies nutritional formula produced from the quality milk of our Pennsylvania dairy farmers, creating much-needed jobs right here in Reading,” Caltagirone said. “I’m glad that this grant will be used to help develop products that bring nutritional benefits from the youngest to the oldest of our residents, while also providing a shot in the arm to our state's dairy industry,” Rozzi said. The grant was approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority through its Pennsylvania Dairy Investment Program. The Pennsylvania Dairy Investment Program provides grants to encourage research and development, organic transition, value-added processing and marketing grants in support of Pennsylvania’s Dairy Industry. The program is administered jointly by the state Read more

 

Caltagirone bill to fight blight and help small businesses passes House

(Mar 21, 2019)

HARRISBURG, March 21 – State Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, D-Berks, announced that the Pennsylvania House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly (192-2) to pass H.B. 324, which would offer municipalities a new mechanism to reduce blight while supporting local microenterprises. Microenterprises employ one to five people. The legislation now heads to the Senate for consideration. “Developing microenterprises would not only help create jobs, but also make our communities more attractive places to live and work,” Caltagirone said. “If enacted, the bill will enable cities and communities like Reading to utilize existing administrative entities, including municipal authorities, acquire blighted property and issue loans to microbusinesses, providing more opportunities to re-use downtown buildings and support small businesses. The passage of this bill would be a big win for economic development and community revitalization in Pennsylvania.” Introduced by Rep. Keith Gillespie, R-York, H.B. 324 would allow for the creation of programs to provide loan assistance to low-income Pennsylvanians to establish microenterprises and real property tax abatement for properties used to develop such businesses. “As Democratic chair of the Urban Affairs Committee, I am proud of this bill which would help redevelopment entities, local governments and businesses to work together to improve the physical and economic quality of life in their communities,” Read more

 

Caltagirone: Recycling plant creating 100+ local jobs
Oct 04, 2019

Reps. Caltagirone and Rozzi, Sen. Schwank announce more than $250,000 in grant money for Berks County
Sep 17, 2019

Caltagirone announces more than $800,000 in grants for Berks County
Sep 16, 2019

Caltagirone Discusses Solutions To Juvenile Justice System
Sep 11, 2019

Caltagirone working to update schools, preserve health of students
Sep 05, 2019

Caltagirone announces more than $174,000 in grants for children, schools in Reading
Aug 29, 2019

Caltagirone to hold free paper shredding event in Reading
Aug 19, 2019

Caltagirone Working for Environmental Justice
Aug 14, 2019

Caltagirone announces $1.5 million grant for Reading project
Aug 01, 2019

Down Payment Assistance Program to be introduced in Reading with funding help from state
Jul 22, 2019

Reading High awarded environmental awareness grant
Jun 28, 2019

Caltagirone statement on passage of 2019-20 budget
Jun 25, 2019

Caltagirone: Traffic signal tax exemption needs clarification
Jun 18, 2019

Caltagirone applauds Wolf administration for tax credits
Jun 18, 2019

Caltagirone praises Urban Affairs for reporting bills out of committee
Jun 12, 2019

Caltagirone announces state grant awarded to Olivet Boys & Girls Club of Reading
May 01, 2019

Caltagirone introduces bill to eliminate school property taxes for struggling seniors
Apr 15, 2019

Caltagirone to hold free paper shredding event
Apr 15, 2019

Reading company receives CFA grant
Mar 26, 2019

Caltagirone bill to fight blight and help small businesses passes House
Mar 21, 2019