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Grandparents raising grandchildren

Route 309 to receive improvements thanks to $800,000 state grant

(Oct 14, 2016)

WILKES-BARRE, Oct. 14 – The Greater Wilkes-Barre Industrial Fund has been awarded an $800,000 grant for the Route 309 Safety Improvement Project, according to state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne. “This project will improve traffic patterns and increase safety. Congratulations to the Greater Wilkes-Barre Industrial Fund for its good work," Pashinski said. Pashinski noted the Route 309 Safety Improvement Project will include road construction and alignment of the Blackman Street Plaza and the intersection of Johnson Street and Route 309, traffic signal installation, and paving, grading and curbing. The Multimodal Transportation Fund was created by Act 89, enacted in November 2013, Pennsylvania’s far-reaching transportation funding plan. For the first time, transit, aviation, rail freight and pedestrian and bicycle modes obtained dedicated sources of funds, putting the modes on a firmer footing for future initiatives. Read more


Students, parents: 2017-18 FAFSA can be filed starting Oct. 1

(Sep 27, 2016)

Please be aware that anyone who will be attending college in the 2017-18 school year will be able to file their FAFSA -- Free Application for Federal Student Aid -- beginning Oct. 1. Previously, the applications were not available until Jan. 1 of the school year. This is an important change, as the FAFSA must be filed each year for any college student who wishes to be considered for state or federal grants. Along with the date change, families will use their previous tax year information, instead of the tax information that would be filed by April of the school year. Both of these changes will make it easier to file the necessary application in a timelier manner and will better coincide with the actual college application process for incoming students. More information about paying for college is available at the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency website, www.pheaa.org . And remember, the first word in FAFSA is FREE, so there is no need to pay anyone to file the application on your behalf. Read more


Pashinski: Keep Turnpike Tolls Affordable

(Sep 07, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski joined the House Democratic Policy Committee in Moosic to discuss rising tolls on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Pashinski says the Turnpike is a vital roadway for commuters and he hopes legislators and Turnpike officials can work together to keep tolls affordable in the future. Read more


DEP awards recycling grants to Luzerne County, Wilkes-Barre

(Sep 02, 2016)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 2 – The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection recently awarded recycling grants to the city of Wilkes-Barre and to Luzerne County, said state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne. A $38,680 grant was given to Luzerne County under the County Planning Grant Program of Act 101 of 1988. It will be used to reimburse up to 80 percent of the costs to revise the county’s solid waste management plan. A $77,935 grant was awarded to Wilkes-Barre under the Recycling Performance Grant Program of Act 101 of 1988. It’s based on the 5,931.70 tons recycled in 2014 and the municipality’s population. “These grants will help both the city and the county improve upon their top-notch recycling efforts,” Pashinski said. “I applaud the residents of Wilkes-Barre for doing a tremendous job by recycling and not throwing out additional waste that unnecessarily ends up in our landfills.” Read more


Letter to the Editor: Expand support for Pennsylvania’s grandparents who are raising grandkids

(Aug 15, 2016)

State Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski deserves great credit for his untiring support of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren and state House Bill 662. Read more


Pashinski: Over $2.5 million in state funding awarded to local projects

(Jul 01, 2016)

HARRISBURG, July 1 – State Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne, today announced that several projects in his legislative district were approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority for more than $2.5 million in grants. "These grants will provide my communities with excellent projects that will create and sustain jobs and enhance the quality of life for the residents," Pashinski said. "I thank Senator John Yudichak for helping to secure the funding for many of these projects and send a special shout out of CFA advisors for their good work and approval." The grants approved in Pashinski's district are: • $100,000 for Huber Breaker Preservation Society, Inc. to develop the Anthracite Coal Region Miners Memorial Park in Ashley; • $130,000 for King’s College to build a multi-purpose facility at the Robert L. Betzler Athletic Complex; • $550,000 for Hanover Safe Streets; • $650,000 for Wilkes University; • $249,465 for the Children’s Service Center to build a new outpatient clinic; • $50,000 for Wilkes-Barre to renovate the Wyoming Valley Art League’s building; • $278,351 for Hanover Township to rehabilitate the Solomon Creek Interceptor, a dilapidated 100-year-old sewer line that runs through Ashley Borough and Hanover and Wilkes-Barre townships. • $181,250 for Wilkes-Barre to renovate the Greater Wilkes-Barre Family YMCA’s rooftop playground, pool and wellness Read more


Pashinski: On-Time Budget Helps Schools

(Jun 30, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski says the House passed an on-time state budget with an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote that delivers an extra $250 million in funding for schools and gets vital funding to social service agencies without broad-based tax increases. Read more


Pashinski: Help Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

(Jun 27, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski highlights his H.B. 662, which would create a Kinship Navigator Pilot Program to connect grandparents raising their grandchildren to local and state resources. Pashinski was joined at a news conference at the state Capitol in Harrisburg by Beth O’Boyle, a grandmother from Luzerne County tasked with raising her grandchild. Pashinski says many times grandparents raising their grandchildren don’t have a support network, and find it difficult to obtain legal advice or access to rehabilitation services. As part of his legislation, Pashinski has provided a resource on his legislative webpage, www.pahouse.com/Pashinski, that provides links and information on topics that could be beneficial to grandparents and their grandchildren. Read more


Pashinski urges Senate action to help grandparents raising grandchildren

(Jun 27, 2016)

HARRISBURG, June 27 – State Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne, today held a Capitol news conference to request the Senate move on his bill that would help benefit grandparents who are the sole caregivers of their grandchildren in Pennsylvania. House Bill 662, which has been in the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee for more than a year, would create a Kinship Navigator Pilot Program to determine the needs of kinship caregivers, focusing on grandparents raising grandchildren, and assess the feasibility of establishing a statewide Kinship Navigator Program. Pashinski said there are more than 240,000 children in Pennsylvania who are being taken care of by family members. Of those children, 191,000 are being raised by 80,000 grandparents. "These grandparents face many challenges raising their grandchildren including no support network, no access to legal service or direction to service organizations, and no information on relief funds and rehabilitation services for grandparents and grandchildren," he said. "On average, it costs $27 a day to keep a child in foster care in Pennsylvania, which adds up to nearly $2 billion a year. The grandparents who are raising their grandchildren are saving the taxpayers serious money, so these grandparents deserve some reasonable assistance." Pashinski said he has provided a resource on his legislative webpage ( www.pahouse.com/Pashinski ) that provides links to resources and information on Read more


Grandparents raising grandchildren

(Jun 27, 2016)

Get help finding answers and assistance here Read more


Pashinski votes against flawed gaming expansion amendment

(Jun 23, 2016)

HARRISBURG, June 23 – State Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne, today released the following statement after the vote on a gaming expansion amendment failed in the House of Representatives: “While I support bringing video gaming terminals into the commonwealth, I voted against the amendment that would have allowed 75,000 VGTs to flood the gaming market overnight. The legislation would have permitted five of these machines at liquor establishments and truck stops. It would have completely saturated the gaming industry and, in the long run, have done more harm than good to our small businesses, bars and taverns. “The overflow would also have had a negative flow of revenue -- anywhere between $80 million and $200 million -- to the Pennsylvania Lottery, which provides funding for programs for our senior citizens. “I currently have legislation, House Bill 1458 , that would allow three video gaming terminals in restaurants, bars and clubs with a valid liquor license. The legislation would not only help these small businesses compete with the casinos, but it would also help reduce the property tax burden that homeowners are continuously facing.” Read more


Pashinski supports bill expanding PACENET coverage for seniors

(Jun 07, 2016)

HARRISBURG, June 7 – State Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne, voted for legislation that would expand prescription drug coverage to more than 32,000 older Pennsylvanians by increasing income eligibility guidelines for the PACENET program. The House voted unanimously in support of H.B. 2069, which would increase the annual maximum income limits in the state’s Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract for the Elderly Needs Enhancement Tier from $23,500 to $31,000 for a single person and from $31,500 to $41,000 for a married couple. "Many of our seniors are struggling to get the things they need and something as vital as getting prescription medications shouldn’t break the bank," Pashinski said. "I believe we must do everything we can to assure that our seniors get the services and assistance they need and bumping up the income limits for the program would be a huge benefit." The last time income limits were adjusted was in 2003, but laws, known as COLA moratoriums, have been enacted periodically since 2008 to help seniors keep their prescription drug coverage. The laws keep Social Security cost-of-living adjustments from being counted as income and prevent many seniors from being pushed out of the program. The current moratorium was enacted in 2015 and is due to expire at the end of 2017. The income limits for the first tier of prescription drug assistance, PACE, remain at $14,500 or less for individuals and $17,700 or less for a Read more


Application deadline for Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program extended until Dec. 31

(Jun 07, 2016)

As anticipated, the deadline to file a 2015 Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program application has been extended from June 30 to Dec. 31, 2016 and my office is here to help! The Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians 65 and older, widows and widowers age 50 and older, and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The maximum standard rebate is $650, but supplemental rebates can boost rebates up to $975. My offices can help with the applications. Please don’t assume you are not eligible. Half of Social Security income is discounted, and claimants are not disqualified from rebates solely because of Social Security cost-of-living-adjustments. Read more


Pashinski: Background Checks Make Sense

(May 10, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski talks about how many people are caught each year trying to purchase a gun who aren't allowed to and why making background checks universal for all purchases in Pennsylvania is long overdue. Read more


Pashinski applauds Wilkes-Barre receiving DCED Early Intervention Program grant

(May 09, 2016)

HARRISBURG, May 9 – In an effort to strengthen its fiscal capacity, the city of Wilkes-Barre will receive a $60,000 grant through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development’s Early Intervention Program, said state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Luzerne. The purpose of the Early Intervention Program is to establish short-term and long-term financial and managerial objectives pertaining to revenue and expenditure trends and policies to build a strong fiscal capacity. The grant will be used for city leaders to develop and implement a five-year financial management plan and operational strategy to address fiscal difficulties in a timely and planned manner. "Wilkes-Barre and city officials have worked hard over the years to improve the fiscal stability of our city," Pashinski said. "I am pleased Wilkes-Barre is the recipient of this valuable grant which will provide the new administration the opportunity to strengthen the financial status of our city. "With proper planning, they will have the opportunity to design a financial plan that will be fiscally prudent and productive for the citizens of Wilkes-Barre for many years to come." As part of the plan, city leaders must hire a consultant, create and adopt a multi-year plan that identifies the city’s top three to five priorities, details the actions to be achieved and gets public input, and must evaluate and adjust the plan based on a master schedule that Read more


Pashinski: Helping those in need with Medical Marijuana

(Apr 13, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski speaks about the House’s passage of a medical marijuana bill Wednesday that will help deliver vital medicine to people who are suffering. The bill now goes to the governor to be signed into law. Read more


House Professional Licensure Committee holds hearing on Pashinski Music Therapy Licensure bill

(Mar 23, 2016)

HARRISBURG, March 23 – The House Professional Licensure Committee recently held a hearing on state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski’s bill that would establish a state Board of Professional Music Therapy Licensure in Pennsylvania. “There’s a major difference between a music therapist and someone who either teaches or performs music,” Pashinski said. “A music therapist takes that art and uses it with a patient to stimulate their mind, help them physically, suppress certain emotion, ignite certain parts of their brain, and help them overcome their disability.” Those who testified on H.B. 1438 include officials from the American Music Therapy Association, Pennsylvania State Task Force for Music Therapy and Autism Society Greater Harrisburg, as well as parents of children who benefit from music therapy. One advocate said while Pennsylvania has 10 music therapy schools, which is the highest number in the U.S., 30 percent of graduates said they had difficulty obtaining employment as a music therapist in the commonwealth. “Many music therapy graduates are having to leave Pennsylvania in order to obtain full-time employment,” said Nicole Hahna, assistant professor of music therapy, Slippery Rock University. “Additionally, lack of licensure in Pennsylvania has meant that graduates are often not able to apply for music therapy positions that require licensure.” Pashinski said in addition to creating a state Read more


Pashinski: Music in Our Schools Month

(Mar 16, 2016)

Pa. state Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski talks about the importance of music education in our schools, as part of his resolution to recognize March 2016 as Music in Our Schools Month in Pennsylvania. Read more


Property Tax/Rent Rebate forms available at my office

(Feb 15, 2016)

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 prescription programs benefit seniors

(Feb 10, 2016)

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