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Williams announces $300K grant for Chester County Home Modification Program

(May 22, 2024)

COATESVILLE, May 22 – Chester County will receive $300,000 from the Department of Community and Economic Development’s Keystone Communities Program for the Chester County Home Modification Program which makes homes more accessible for low-income residents with disabilities. “For many of our residents with disabilities, their houses often feel like potential danger zones as they haven’t been constructed with their unique needs in mind,” Williams said. “By providing for important home accessibility improvements and upgrades that increase safety and mobility, this state grant money will help our residents truly feel safe and secure in their homes.” The Chester County Home Modification Program assists low-to-moderate-income residents of Chester County with permanent disabilities to make their current residences more accessible. The CCHMP allows for a wide range of adaptive modifications, which include, but are not limited to, ramps, lifts, door and hallway widening, kitchen and bathroom modifications, visual doorbells, audio phones and visual phone signalers. Run by DCED, the KCP encourages the creation of partnerships between the public and private sectors that support the growth and stability of neighborhoods and communities; social and economic diversity; and a strong and secure quality of life. Local governments, redevelopment and housing authorities, nonprofit organizations, community development corporations, and business, Read more

Hanbidge and Cephas bill strengthening affordability and accessibility to child care passes the House

(May 22, 2024)

“Incentivizing employer contribution to employees’ child care expenses can help ensure workforce access to parents trying to support families,” Hanbidge said. Read more

Daley highlights bill for mental health training at schools

(May 20, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 20 – As part of Mental Health Awareness Month, state Rep. Mary Jo Daley, D-Montgomery, during a Capitol news conference today highlighted the need for school coaches to receive mental health training. Her legislation (H.B. 1367) would help to ensure that students, parents and guardians, athletic coaches and extracurricular advisors are all made aware of the availability of mental health services within a school and/or local community. The bill would also require that athletic coaches receive mental health awareness training similar to training required of other school personnel. “We expect our school professionals to be there for our children, so with modern concerns facing us, it’s imperative that we keep fresh the training resources that give our teachers and coaches the ability to do their jobs,” Daley said. “Nearly half of America’s youth struggle with mental health before turning 18. Unfortunately, teenagers might not come forward and might be fearful of seeking help because they don’t think it would be ‘mentally tough.’” “I stand today before you as someone who made a comeback from an injury that felt like the end of the world, and it likely would have been if not for the support of my coaches,” said Brynn Neidgh, a student-athlete at York Suburban who spoke in support of the bill. A recent study surveying more than 10,000 Read more

Friel spearheads open letter concerning relationship between CHOP & Medicaid insurers

(May 16, 2024)

State Rep. Paul Friel has authored an open letter, co-signed by 23 additional regional members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, urging AmeriHealth Caritas PA, Keystone First, and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to collectively find a solution that keeps CHOP in-network for coverage under the insurers’ Medicaid plans. Read more

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Area fire departments' challenges highlighted on listening tour

(May 14, 2024)

“How are we going to collaborate to make a difference and put forth legislation that’s going to help everyone across the state? I need to come out and see and talk to the people that are doing the real work. We need to come together and figure some solutions," Borowski said. Read more

House passes O’Mara bill supporting first responders with PTSI

(May 08, 2024)

“My dad was a firefighter in Philadelphia – he was my hero – and he died by suicide in 2003. First responders are heroes, but they’re not superheroes," O'Mara said. Read more

Lawmakers introduce landmark energy bills in Pa. House

(May 08, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 8 – State Rep. Danielle Friel Otten, D-Chester, and state Rep. Aerion Abney, D-Allegheny, today introduced legislation advancing the Shapiro administration’s Pennsylvania Reliable Energy Sustainability Standard (PRESS) and Pennsylvania Climate Emission Reduction (PACER) Program plans for Pennsylvania, respectively. The plans were first announced by Gov. Josh Shapiro in March . A companion PRESS bill was filed in the Senate by state Sen. Steven Santarsiero, D-Bucks, while state Sen. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, introduced the Senate version of the PACER legislation. “Right now in our commonwealth, we must take action to catch up in the race to create clean and reliable energy – to be more competitive, ensure consumers pay less for their electricity bills, and create more jobs and opportunities for our businesses to grow and our workers to get ahead,” Shapiro said. “I have made clear that any energy policy supported by my administration must meet the three-part test of protecting and creating energy jobs, taking real action to address climate change pollution, and ensuring reliable, affordable power for consumers in the long term – and my energy plan is built to do all three. Together with the support of leaders like Representative Abney and Representative Otten in the General Assembly, we’re going to ensure Pennsylvania will continue to be a national energy leader for decades to come.” Read more

Pielli’s business reporting bill heads to governor’s desk

(May 08, 2024)

“In order for Pennsylvania to succeed, we need to be more welcoming to businesses,” said Pielli. “For purposes of efficiency and consistency, my bill would change the requirement so all companies doing business in Pennsylvania have the same reporting date. Read more

Kim plan empowers Pennie enrollees with grants for premiums, expenses

(May 06, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 6 – Individuals who buy health insurance through Pennie could receive a new state subsidy to help pay for their insurance premiums under a proposal introduced by state Rep. Patty Kim, chair of the PA House Insurance Committee. Today, that proposal, H.B. 2234, was favorably voted out of that committee and is ready for a full House vote. Pennie provides excellent health care coverage for hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians who fall outside of traditional work-related coverage options, Kim said, but many families still struggle to meet their deductibles or pay their premiums. More than two-thirds of uninsured people who applied for, but did not purchase, Pennie coverage said it was too expensive. And many Pennie plans have deductibles over $10,000. However, according to Federal Reserve data, 13% of adults are unable to pay a $400 unexpected expense at any given time – meaning many Pennie customers cannot afford their coverage. “We can lift struggling workers up to manage the rising costs of health care with a program that empowers them to pay their bills,” said Kim, D-Dauphin/Cumberland. “From a public policy perspective, small, targeted programs can deliver a difference in people’s lives.” Kim’s proposal answers Gov. Josh Shapiro’s call to create a pilot program giving Pennsylvanians cash subsidies so they can buy health insurance through Read more

Daley legislation to expand use of Alkaline Hydrolysis in PA passes House

(May 01, 2024)

HARRISBURG, May 1 – A Pennsylvania House bill providing for a human cremation process known as alkaline hydrolysis passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives today, said Rep. Mary Jo Daley, sponsor of the legislation. Alkaline hydrolysis, sometimes called water cremation, is a method of cremation that uses an alkaline solution and a pressurized steel chamber to break the body down to an ash component. The combination of the alkaline solution, pressure, and heat creates the ash, similar to flame cremation, which requires high amounts of energy. “As the demand for cremation builds, it’s important to note that heat over 1,600 degrees Fahrenheit is necessary – and that requires a lot of energy consumption in crematoriums,” said Daley, D-Montgomery. “When people think that cremation offers a greener end of life than a burial does, it’s important to keep this perspective in mind.” Water cremation is estimated to use about a quarter of the energy traditional cremations use, according to the Mayo Clinic. "The proposed legislation aims to provide Pennsylvanians with interment choices that are not only kinder but also environmentally sustainable compared to existing options," Daley said. “Complex problems require complex solutions, and it is important to keep up with these advancements in end-of-life care.” “Cremation is typically seen as a more Read more