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House adopts Donatucci resolutions focused on women, civil rights

(Jun 11, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 11 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, announced the unanimous adoption of resolutions she sponsored to bring awareness to issues important to Pennsylvanians. According to Donatucci, House lawmakers on Monday said yes to: Women’s Equality Day ( HR 379 ): The resolution celebrates the accomplishments of the many women who have fought for the right to vote and renews the state’s support for efforts to promote women’s equality. Aug. 26 falls in line with the national recognition of Women’s Equality Day. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Month ( HR 380 ): As many as 5 million women across the United States are affected by polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal disease that can cause irregular ovulation or fertility and makes women more susceptible to serious conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. Although causes for the disease remain unknown, experts identify several factors, including genetics, as suspected causes. To raise awareness of this disease, H.R. 380 recognizes September 2019 as “Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Awareness Month” in Pennsylvania. Peace Day ( HR 381 ): Drawing from the United Nations International Day of Peace and the organization’s arm in Greater Philadelphia’s Peace Day Philly, H.R. 381 designates Sept. 21, 2019 as Peace Day, a day to promote peace, tolerance and acceptance throughout the commonwealth. “It’s reassuring to see my Read more

 

Donatucci seeks support for strengthening notary public seals

(Jun 10, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 10 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci announced she is seeking co-sponsors for her legislation that would crack down on an increasing problem in Philadelphia: home thefts through fraudulent property transfers. “In many cases, homeowners who are in poor health or who don’t have any close family or friends fall victim to this illegal practice. They don’t realize that someone has transferred ownership of their property,” said Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware. Donatucci said her legislation would help to prevent fraud cases by requiring companies or organizations that manufacture notary stamps to be licensed. The manufacturer would be assigned an identification number that would be included on the stamp to prove a legitimate, licensed company made it. In addition, when a notary public begins their commission, they would receive a Certificate of Authorization they would use to purchase a stamp from a list of permitted, licensed manufacturers. Donatucci stated this process would restrict unauthorized people from going to any store or online shop to have an illegal stamp made for themselves. “These unscrupulous people are scheming with someone who isn’t a notary but was able to purchase a seal online. They work together to sign over the property without the true owner knowing that it is happening,” Donatucci said. “With my legislation, we would be taking proactive measures to stop this type of illegal Read more

 

Get free assistance with your Property Tax/Rent Rebate

(Jan 24, 2019)

Forms for Pennsylvania’s Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program for the 2018 tax year are available – and my office 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 2018 and meet all other eligibility criteria. The rebates normally are distributed by the Department of Revenue beginning July 1. So, the sooner you file, the sooner you will receive your money. Read more

 

Harris, Donatucci praise opening of Rowhouse Grocery in Point Breeze

(Jan 11, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 11 – State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., joined state Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila., in praising the opening of a new grocery store in the Point Breeze section of Philadelphia to help an underserved community access affordable, healthy food options. “The opening of this store is truly welcoming news. The city is overwhelmed with food deserts and for people who live in these areas, they may not have the means to travel to get access to fresh foods and produce,” Donatucci said. “I applaud Rowhouse Grocery for providing healthy options in this community.” “This grocery store comes in at a time when there’s more focus than ever before on healthy eating, yet many of our constituents simply don’t have access to the fresh fruits, vegetables and meats they need,” Harris said. “If the products aren’t accessible or affordable to the people we represent, then they simply don’t exist to them. I hope that Rowhouse Grocery gives an opportunity for people to explore meals that are nutritious, yet still affordable.” A food desert is defined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a location without easy access to fresh, health and affordable foods. People who live in food deserts tend to consume foods that are higher in cholesterol, sugar and fat. Rowhouse Grocery is located at 1713 McKean St. in the Point Breeze neighborhood of Philadelphia. Sections of Point Breeze are represented by Read more

 

Donatucci sworn in for 5th term as state legislator

(Jan 01, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 1 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, was sworn in today at the state Capitol to begin her fifth term representing the 185 th Legislative District. “I am honored to continue representing everyone in the 185 th District,” Donatucci said. “I will continue making sure our schools, public safety departments, healthcare facilities, transportation systems and other resources are able to effectively serve all of our residents.” Her legislative goals mirror the recently unveiled Plan4PA , a comprehensive strategy from the House Democratic Caucus that is focused on putting people first. Major components of the plan include job creation, affordable health care, a fair economy and quality schools. Donatucci has served in the House of Representatives since 2011, when she succeeded her late husband, then-state Rep. Robert Donatucci, after winning a special election. The Pennsylvania House of Representatives swearing-in ceremony is mandated by the state constitution to convene at noon on the first Tuesday in January. Today marks the start of the 203 rd legislative session. Read more

 

Heating aid via LIHEAP now open

(Nov 01, 2018)

The 2018-2019 Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program – LIHEAP – is accepting applications for heating assistance grants. LIHEAP offers cash grants of $200 to $1,000 that are sent directly to the utility company to defray heating costs for eligible households, and crisis benefits of up to $600 for households in immediate danger of being without heat. Remember: These are grants and do not have to be repaid. This season’s income guidelines for both LIHEAP cash and crisis grants are $18,210 for an individual, $24,690 for couples and increases for each additional person in the household. Please click here for more LIHEAP information. Please consider visiting my office if you need help filing a LIHEAP application. Besides my office, LIHEAP information is available by: Contacting local County Assistance offices by phone or in person. Calling the LIHEAP Client Helpline at 1-866-857-7095 or PA Relay at 711 for the hearing impaired. Applying online at https://www.compass.state.pa.us . Read more

 

Senior prescription program expanded to help more people

(Oct 23, 2018)

Our seniors should never have to choose between paying for medicine and paying for heat or rent or food. I was proud to put people first and stand up for a stronger PACE program by voting for this legislation. Read more

 

Donatucci: House passes breast, cervical cancer screening bill

(Oct 17, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 17 – More women would have access to lifesaving breast cancer screenings through legislation introduced by state Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, which unanimously passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives today. Donatucci’s bill H.B. 562 would amend the Pennsylvania Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Screening Act to expand screenings to low-income, underinsured and uninsured women 30 to 65 through the Department of Health’s HealthyWoman Program. Currently, only women 40 to 49 are eligible for the program. Donatucci is a member of the Women’s Health Caucus, which is championing this bill as part of the Pennsylvania Agenda for Women’s Health. “About one in eight women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime and some will be diagnosed with it at a young age. Many of them win the battle due to early detection,” Donatucci said. “We must ensure every eligible woman in the commonwealth has access to these potentially life-saving screenings.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates eight out of every 100,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer every year. According to Breastcancer.org, more than 40,000 women in the U.S. are expected to die this year from breast cancer, despite the decrease in death rates since 1989. House Bill 562 will now go to the Senate for consideration. ### CONTACT: Daniel Bixler House Read more

 

Philadelphia Delegation remembers state Rep. Mike O’Brien

(Oct 16, 2018)

State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, chair of the Philadelphia Delegation of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, released the following statement today in response to the passing of Rep. Mike O’Brien, D-Phila. “On behalf of the Philadelphia Delegation, our prayers are with Mike’s family during this extremely difficult time. We’ll never forget his kind heart, positive attitude, and undeniable passion he exhibited in both Harrisburg and Philadelphia. “His accomplishments, endless knowledge, and determination as a state representative were truly an inspiration to all of us. Mike always put his community first by leading the charge for a fair, balanced and on-time state budget, while fighting for better schools, family sustaining jobs, and a safe environment. “Today, the Pennsylvania Legislature didn’t just lose a distinguished member but a loving husband, devoted father, and genuine friend whose legacy will live on forever,” Donatucci said. Gov. Tom Wolf ordered the commonwealth flag be lowered to half-staff at the Capitol Complex and at all public buildings and grounds throughout the state in honor of O’Brien. They will remain at half-staff through sunset on the day of his interment. Read more

 

Republicans kill worker protection proposals in committee; silence supporters

(Sep 24, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 24 – House Democrats on the Labor and Industry Committee walked out of a meeting today, citing Majority Chairman Rob Kauffmann’s second time silencing open debate over worker protection bills and his apparent agenda to only consider and advance partisan bills in this shortened fall session. Republicans advanced five bills, all of which Committee Minority Chairman John Galloway said are anti-worker special-interest bills: H.B. 297 would make it legal to pay construction workers less for certain work. H.B. 861 would make it illegal to require employers to provide sick leave or adopt equal pay provisions, even in places where local governments have already made these protections law. H.B. 1781 would allow employers to ask that workers sign away their workers compensation rights. H.B. 2571 seeks to prohibit public workers from deducting their union and fair share dues to the organizations that represent them. H.B. 2593 would widen the timeframe for union resignation. “Not one of these Republican bills helps a worker stay safe on the job or get paid fairly,” said Galloway, D-Bucks. “If this committee is what stands between Pennsylvania workers and unfair laws, then they are sorely misrepresented. “We walked out in solidarity with workers, whom government is sworn to protect.” Democrats who attempted to amend in protections for families with children with disabilities, veterans, Read more

 

Donatucci announces $254,413 grant for the 185th Legislative District

(Sep 19, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 19 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, today announced that more than $250,000 in funding has been awarded from the Pennsylvania Small Water and Sewer Program for a project in the 185th Legislative District, which covers portions of Delaware and Philadelphia counties. The grant – approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority – will help fund a project to replace 430 feet of sewer lines, 33 street laterals, and three manhole covers on Apple Street in Colwyn Borough, Delaware County. “Aging infrastructure can lead to major consequences, so it’s crucial to address these issues as quickly as possible,” Donatucci said. “This project for Apple Street helps residents throughout the borough through the reduction of inflow and infiltration.” The sanitary sewer along Apple Street is in poor condition due to a sinkhole developing along this line of pipe. The line has been televised, and shown to be in dire need of replacement. The total cost for the project is $299,310. The CFA was established in 2004 as an independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development to administer Pennsylvania’s economic stimulus packages. It is responsible for funding programs and investments in Pennsylvania’s economic growth. The CFA consists of seven board members: four legislative appointees and the secretaries of DCED, the Office of the Budget and the Department of Banking and Read more

 

Summer 2018

(Aug 29, 2018)

Read my summer 2018 newsletter. Read more

 

Donatucci announces $4.67 million to modernize Oregon Ave. corridor

(Jul 12, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, July 12 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, today announced the awarding of a $4.67 million state grant for traffic signal upgrades and other improvements to the Oregon Avenue corridor. "This is one of the largest grants being awarded in this round throughout the entire state. I'm pleased to work with Governor Tom Wolf and PennDOT to support increased safety and mobility along one of South Philly's busiest roadways," Donatucci said. The state's "Green Light - Go" program will provide $4.67 million to modernize 23 intersections along the Oregon Avenue corridor with the installation of traffic controllers, communications equipment to connect back to the city’s traffic operations center, pavement markings and disability-access curb ramps. Green Light - Go funding may be used for a range of improvements including, but not limited to: light-emitting diode (LED) technology installation, traffic signal retiming, developing special event plans and monitoring traffic signals, as well as upgrading traffic signals to the latest technologies. ### Read more

 

Donatucci, Stack to host 'Pathways to Pardons' July 23 in Sharon Hill

(Jul 06, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, July 6 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, and Lt. Gov. Mike Stack will host a "Pathways to Pardons" event at noon Monday, July 23 at the Good Neighbor Senior Center-Community Center, 1085 Hook Road, Sharon Hill, 19079. Donatucci said those in attendance can learn how the pardon process works in Pennsylvania and work toward a pardon for past convictions. "This event is a resource for those in need of a second chance. A pardon can allow citizens to better themselves and support their families," Donatucci said. The program will be interactive and questions from the audience will be welcome. For more information, or to RSVP, contact Beatrice Poe in Donatucci’s Sharon Hill office at (610) 522-2290. ### Read more

 

Donatucci: We must keep fighting for workers’ rights

(Jun 27, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, June 27 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, chairwoman of the Philadelphia Delegation, released this statement after the U.S. Supreme Court’s Janus decision on unions: “The high court’s decision was a step in the wrong direction for our families and the working class. It is because of unions that we have an eight-hour work day, rules limiting underage labor and workers who truly believe in what public service is all about. “This outcome will harm public servants such as nurses, teachers, school district workers, police, firefighters and social workers, in addition to driving down wages for everyone, eliminating health insurance for many working families and making workplace accidents and deaths more likely. “Just this month, 1,500 airport workers at the Philadelphia International Airport secured their first union contract, more than doubling their wages in the process and ensuring workplace protections for the men and women who make the airport work. Thousands of health-care workers across the commonwealth have joined SEIU Healthcare PA in recent years and adjunct faculty members at colleges and universities across the state have been joining unions in droves. “Every resident, not only in Philadelphia but across the commonwealth, will be harmed if we allow the attacks on working families to continue. We must make it easier, not harder, for men and women to join together to form strong unions and fight for good Read more

 

Donatucci: House committee advances breast, cervical cancer screening bill

(Jun 22, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 22 – State Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, today announced her bill that would increase eligibility for breast and cervical cancer screenings in Pennsylvania was unanimously voted out of the House Health Committee. House Bill 562 would amend the Pennsylvania Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Screening Act by allowing low-income, underinsured and uninsured women ages 30 to 65 to qualify for the screenings through the Department of Health’s HealthyWoman Program. Currently, only women ages 40 to 49 are eligible for the program. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates eight out of every 100,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer every year. “About one in eight women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime and some will be diagnosed with it at a young age. Many of them win the battle due to early detection,” Donatucci said. “We must ensure every eligible woman in the commonwealth has access to these potentially life-saving screenings.” According to Breastcancer.org, more than 40,000 women in the U.S. are expected to die this year from breast cancer, despite the decrease in death rates since 1989. House Bill 562 will now go to the full House of Representatives for a vote. Read more

 

Donatucci: House committee votes on gun safety legislation

(Jun 19, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 19 – The House Judiciary Committee today voted on several gun safety bills, including legislation authored by state Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila., which would deal with people with mental health issues and firearms. House Bill 273 would establish a voluntary "no firearm purchase list" that the Pennsylvania State Police would maintain. A person could request to be placed on the list for at least one year and up to five years. State police also would inform a person 20 days before his or her time ends on the list and provide a way for reenlistment should that person desire. “This bill is similar to legislation that created the existing voluntary gambling self-exclusion list. It would help people who are struggling with mental or physical health issues and who fear they may be a danger to themselves or others,” Donatucci said. “If my legislation could save at least one life, then it is truly worth it.” In addition to Donatucci’s bill, the following pieces of legislation were voted out of the committee and will now go to the full House of Representatives for a vote: H.B. 2060 – Would require a person to surrender his or her firearms 48 hours after being convicted of domestic violence. H.B. 2227 – Would prohibit someone who could be an extreme risk of causing harm to himself, herself or others from possessing firearms. H.B. 2275 – Would prosecute someone convicted of attempted rape, Read more

 

Deadline extended for Pa. Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program

(Jun 11, 2018)

I'm happy to announce that the deadline for the 2017 Pennsylvania Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program has been extended to Dec. 31, 2018. 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 2017 and meet all other eligibility criteria. Applications can also be filed online at www.revenue.pa.gov . There is NO charge to apply for this program. If you need assistance with applying, please contact my office. Read more

 

PHEAA Reminds Students of Approaching 2018-19 PA State Grant Application Deadline

(Apr 24, 2018)

The 2018-19 PA State Grant application filing deadline is Tuesday, May 1. This deadline applies to all renewal applicants and first-time applicants who plan to enroll in colleges, universities, or a college transfer program at 2-year public or private colleges (except community colleges and designated Pennsylvania Open Admission institutions). Additionally, unlike a student loan, a grant is gift aid which does not have to be repaid. To apply for a PA State Grant, applicants must first complete the 2018-19 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Applicants can access this form online by clicking here or here . In addition to completing the FAFSA, first-time applicants must also submit a completed PA State Grant Form. First-time applicants who submit the FAFSA online will be automatically redirected to the SGF by following the onscreen prompts on the confirmation page. First-time applicants who have already submitted their FAFSA but have not completed the SGF will receive an email directing them to PHEAA’s secure Account Access site for completion. Both applications are free to submit. First-time applicants who plan to enroll in a community college, business, trade, or technical school, a hospital school of nursing, a designated Pennsylvania Open Admission institution, or a non-transferable 2-year degree program at a community, 2-year or 4-year college have until Aug. 1, 2018 to complete their PA State Grant application. Students and families are Read more

 

Donatucci Fighting to End Gun Violence

(Apr 18, 2018)

At a House Judiciary Committee special hearing on gun violence & public safety, Pa. state Rep. Maria Donatucci testified on her legislation to create a voluntary "no firearm purchase list" in Pennsylvania, and speaks about the overall scourge of guns in Philadelphia. Read more