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Sainato votes to restore full 2015-16 funding to Lawrence County schools

(Apr 14, 2016)

HARRISBURG, April 14 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, voted to ensure that Lawrence County school districts would receive the funding due to them under budget legislation passed in March. Sainato said he supported the fiscal code do-over ( H.B. 1589 ) so that schools in his 9 th Legislative District and across Pennsylvania would receive money that was taken from them when Gov. Tom Wolf shifted funds to school districts in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Chester-Upland. Because of the funding shift, those three school districts received $101 million of the extra $200 million for public education that was included in the 2015-16 state budget. “The schools in my district can no longer deal with receiving less funding while the urban school districts get more,” Sainato said. “It’s time that all school districts get the funding they need to avoid making any further cuts.” The percentage losses of new money to Lawrence County schools ranged between 8 percent and 43 percent – with Union Area School District facing a 44-percent loss, the steepest among schools in Sainato’s legislative district. Read more


New Castle to receive $274,500 DCED grant

(Apr 08, 2016)

HARRISBURG, April 8 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, today announced that New Castle was approved for a state grant to install curb ramps to increase the accessibility for people with disabilities and to demolish blighted properties. The city will receive $274,500 from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. The funding is provided through the department’s Community Development Block Grant Program. "I'm pleased to see these tax dollars being awarded to New Castle to help officials not only make improvements to enhance the livelihood of the residents, but to make the city more appealing to visitors,” Sainato said. "This type of funding is extremely important as municipal budgets remain tight." Read more


Sainato thanks veterans during event to commemorate end of Vietnam War (with video)

(Mar 29, 2016)

HARRISBURG, March 29 – State Rep. Chris Sainato today joined the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and other elected officials at a Capitol event commemorating the end of the Vietnam War to honor and thank Pennsylvania veterans and their families for their service and sacrifices. Sainato, the Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, said it is only fitting that these veterans are being recognized for their service and sacrifice on the 43rd anniversary of the day the last of our troops departed Vietnam. “Pennsylvania should be very proud because when war occurs, the call goes out and Pennsylvania residents are there,” Sainato said. “When I look at our World War II vets, our Korean and Vietnam vets, and even Operation Desert Storm -- with our National Guard, they answered the call. “When I look out there and see you -- these men and women who served -- and what you went through, we do thank you,” he said at the event. Sainato added that more than 3,100 Pennsylvanians made the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam. The Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs is part of an initiative with the Department of Defense to help Pennsylvanians honor its Vietnam veterans on behalf of the commonwealth. The Vietnam War Commemoration recognized all men and women who served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces between Nov. 1, 1955 and May 15, 1975. Read more


Rep Sainato 2016 Senior Newsletter

(Mar 19, 2016)

Read Rep. Sainato's 2016 Senior Newsletter. 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


Winter 2016 Newsletter

(Feb 05, 2016)

Read Rep. Sainato's Winter 2016 newsletter here. Read more


Winter 2016 Senior Report

(Feb 03, 2016)

Read Rep. Sainato's Senior Report here. Read more


Rep. Sainato Winter 2016 Newsletter

(Feb 03, 2016)

Read Rep. Sainato's 2016 Winter Newsletter. Read more


CHIP offers kids protection and parents peace of mind

(Jan 29, 2016)

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


Pa. Treasury could be holding your unclaimed property

(Jan 01, 2016)

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


PA Power Switch: Ask the right questions

(Dec 30, 2015)

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


Sainato congratulates Lawrence County agencies on grants to help sex abuse victims

(Dec 09, 2015)

HARRISBURG, Dec. 9 – The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency announced at a Capitol news conference today the approval of 44 Penn State Endowment grants to help victims of child sex abuse. A grant for $100,000 was awarded to the CAC of Lawrence County to support the forensic interview/program manager. The Crisis Shelter of Lawrence County also received a grant for $100,000, to be used to hire and train a licensed therapist. “These two agencies are crucial in providing services to help the youth of Lawrence County,” said state Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence. “I congratulate both agencies on receiving these grants so they may help children and adult survivors who were victims of such horrible crimes.” Read more


Sainato honors veterans during Wreaths Across America program at the Capitol

(Dec 09, 2015)

HARRISBURG, Dec. 9 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, today joined supporters of veterans at the state Capitol to lay a holiday wreath to honor veterans and active-duty military members. The Gold Star Mothers of America and The Blue Star Mothers of America have partnered with the Wreaths Across America program to remember the fallen, honor those who serve, and teach children the value of freedom. Sainato said the program is a great way to honor our veterans. “Throughout our history, many brave men and women have answered the call to serve their country, and paid the ultimate price. This is not in vain,” Sainato said. “Their bravery and commitment is proof of the courage and determination of the American people.” Sainato said wreath-laying ceremonies at national and state cemeteries across the country will be held concurrently at noon on Saturday, Dec. 12. The Wreaths Across America program began almost in 2007 in Maine, where the Worcester Wreath Co. found itself with an excess of wreaths. The company decided to have them placed on the headstones of veterans at Arlington National Cemetery. Since then, more than 100,000 wreaths have been donated in its mission to “Remember; Honor; and Teach” about the sacrifices made by our veterans. Read more


Sainato Honors PA National Guard

(Dec 08, 2015)

Pa. state Rep. Chris Sainato takes to the House floor to honor and say thank you to the men and women of the Pennsylvania National Guard for their centuries of service to the Commonwealth on National Guard Day. Read more


National Women's Health Week begins Sunday

(May 08, 2015)

To encourage women to take care of their health, I joined my colleagues in the state House in adopting a resolution that recognizes May 10-16 as National Women's Health Week in Pennsylvania Read more


Spring 2015 Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee newsletter

(Apr 23, 2015)

Here's an update from the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee. Read more


Sainato launches new veterans vans

(Apr 22, 2015)

State Rep. Chris Sainato, Democratic chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, helped the Disabled American Veterans Transportation Network dedicate new vans for use by DAV volunteers to assist Pennsylvania veterans in getting to medical appointments and facilities. Read more


Lawmakers seek criminal investigation of Penn National’s withdrawal from Lawrence County casino project

(Apr 14, 2015)

HARRISBURG, April 14 – Six state lawmakers are asking Attorney General Kathleen Kane to investigate allegations that Penn National withdrew from a casino and horse racetrack project in Lawrence County to block it from competing with a nearby casino the company owns. State Rep. Chris Sainato, one of the authors of the letter, said allegations of fraud and criminal conduct contained in a lawsuit filed against Penn National are troubling. "I, along with my colleagues have called on Attorney General Kane to promptly investigate these allegations, which include alleged criminal conduct, and to take all appropriate action," said Sainato, D-Lawrence. "Clearly, the citizens of Lawrence County would be harmed by lost tax revenue, economic stimulus and jobs if these allegations prove true and if the project were lost." "State and local officials have invested time and energy to bring this project to the area," said state Sen. Elder Vogel, another author of the letter. "We want to make sure that the entire process has been conducted in an honest manner." Sainato and Vogel, R-Lawrence/Beaver/Butler, represent Mahoning Township, which is the site of the proposed project. The letter also is signed by state Reps. Jaret Gibbons, Mark Longietti, Robert Matzie and James Marshall. Penn National had partnered with Endeka Entertainment for the casino/racetrack project in Mahoning Township, known as Lawrence Read more


Less than six months remain to apply for Persian Gulf veterans bonus

(Mar 12, 2015)

The state Department of Military and Veterans Affairs is reminding Pennsylvania veterans that they have until Aug. 31 to apply for a special one-time payment to honor their service and sacrifice if they served on active duty in the Persian Gulf Theater of Operations between Aug. 2, 1990, and Aug. 31, 1991. The bonus pays $75 a month for qualifying, active-duty service members, up to a $525 maximum, for those who served in in Operations Desert Shield or Desert Storm. An additional $5,000 is available to the surviving family for personnel whose death was related to illness or injury received in the line of duty. Service members who were declared prisoners of war may also be eligible for an additional $5,000. The department is reviewing all denials, but new applications are required to reopen a claim. Almost 11,000 Persian Gulf veterans have applied for the one-time cash bonus program since the department began accepting applications in 2008. Instructions on how to apply are available by visiting www.persiangulfbonus.state.pa.us . Read more