HARRISBURG, Aug. 22 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, D-Montgomery, today announced that the Pottstown School District will receive additional funding for its high school automotive department and program. A news conference will be held at 3 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 29 at Pottstown Senior High School, 750 N. Washington St., Pottstown, 19464. The school Auto Shop is located on Adams Street across from the Pottstown YMCA. There will be students on hand to greet visitors and point them in the right direction. The Pottstown School District will celebrate and thank its sponsors for contributing to the much-needed automotive alignment equipment that was installed over the summer. This device will allow students to be trained and tested on a vital piece of automotive technology, while helping them prepare to enter the workforce market with employable skills. In addition to Ciresi, who recommended the Pottstown School District for career and technical education funding from the state, the event will feature: Joe Rusiewicz, executive director of the Foundation for Pottstown Education, who helped secure local and private donors. Mike Hewitt, auto tech teacher. Dave Livengood, Director of Career and Technical Education. Stephen Rodriguez, Superintendent of Pottstown School District. Questions can be directed to Ciresi’s district office at 484-200-8265. Media coverage is invited. ### Read more
LANCASTER, Aug. 22 – State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, will hold his eighth annual Back to School Giveaway from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 25 inside Lancaster Barnstormers’ Clipper Magazine Stadium, 650 N. Prince St. During the event, School District of Lancaster students in grades K-8 will receive a free haircut, backpack, uniform, shoes, and book while also enjoying music, food, games and community activities. Students will also be provided a free meal and free ticket to the 5 p.m. Lancaster Barnstormers game. Students must be in attendance and accompanied by an adult to receive items. Over 1,300 students have already registered to attend. Same-day registration will also be available. Sturla’s staff and other community partners will also be on site to field questions about state-related issues and provide information about state programs and other services. ### ATTENTION NEWS EDITORS/ASSIGNMENT DESKS: Media coverage of this event is invited. CONTACT: Jim Dawes Office of Rep. Mike Sturla Phone: 717-787-3555 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Read more
EBENSBURG, Aug. 22 – Alarmed that several recent state parolees have been arrested for homicide, state Rep. Frank Burns has called for an independent, outside review of the parole process and a halt to new parole hearings until that occurs. Burns, D-Cambria, urgently requested the external review in a letter to Corrections Secretary John Wetzel that was also sent to Theodore W. Johnson, chairman of the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole. “Five recent Pennsylvania prison parolees have been charged with killing six people in just two months. Our process of determining who to release on parole is critically flawed and must immediately change,” Burns wrote. “We cannot sit idly by, watching murder after murder, in the name of soft-on-crime ‘reforms’ that loosen our parole policies. “We should be more focused on protecting innocent Pennsylvanians from senseless death at the hands of convicted criminals that about reducing our prison population at all costs. Please put any new parole hearings on hold until an independent, outside review can figure out why so many unrehabilitated murderers are slipping through your bars and back into society.” Burns noted that he stands with the Pennsylvania State Corrections Officers Association in demanding the review of parole policies and procedures. He called the spate of murders and arrests of recent state parolees “unfathomable” and Read more
ALLENTOWN, Aug. 22 – State Rep. Peter Schweyer, D-Lehigh, and Penn State Extension are partnering to hold a public forum on the threat of the spotted lanternfly. The forum will be from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 28 at South Mountain Middle School, 709 W. Emaus Ave . No RSVP is needed. Master gardeners from Penn State Extension will offer updates on combatting the spotted lanternfly and answer your questions. Attendees can learn more about this invasive insect and how they can help control its impact on the community. The spotted lanternfly can threaten Pennsylvania’s agricultural crops such as grapes, hops and hardwoods, and is affecting the quality of life for residents in heavily infested areas, according to the Department of Agriculture. This event is part of a series of public meetings Penn State Extension is holding across the state to inform residents about the spotted lanternfly and what they can do to stop its spread. Read more
HARRISBURG, Aug. 21 – Following Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross Jr.’s abrupt resignation on Tuesday, state Rep. Jason Dawkins, D-Phila., chairman of the Philadelphia Delegation in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, and its members thanked Ross for his nearly 30 years of service to the city in law enforcement. “It has been an esteemed honor to stand beside Commissioner Ross in our efforts to improve the lives of all Philadelphians, especially to combat the increasing gun violence in the city,” Dawkins said. “Members of the delegation thank him for his nearly three decades of dedicated service to the city of Philadelphia. “However, we are disheartened to hear of the new accusations against the police force. As members of the House of Representatives, we take any charge of sexual harassment, gender or racial discrimination very seriously. “We trust that new leadership within the Philadelphia Police Department, presently under acting Commissioner Christine M. Coulter, will continue to work to overcome any issues of discrimination or harassment existing within the department.” Read more
PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 21 – In response to the shutdown of the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery yesterday and the resulting layoffs, state Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila., issued the following statement: “The Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery has been vital to our economy for over 150 years. Closing this site, which is the largest of its kind on the East Coast, is a nearsighted solution that doesn’t fully consider the impact of the loss of 1,000 good, family-sustaining jobs at the refinery, as well as thousands of jobs at other companies that are affected by the refinery’s operations. Also, thousands of people across the region will see increasing prices at the gas pump and for in-home oil heating. “The refinery has filed for bankruptcy before and I worked with many parties to prevent its shutdown and save jobs then. I’m disappointed that a solution couldn’t be reached at this time to help PES stay open for the employees and contractors who worked there. Although a handful of staff will be kept on board to keep the refinery stable until its fate can be determined, our community will feel the impact of this loss immediately. I always try to find the balance between the environment and economics and I’m continuing to look for a viable solution. “I am hopeful that more answers will emerge about the cause of the fire and the future of the refinery site as the investigation wraps up and the PES Refinery Read more
PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 21 – State Rep. Danilo Burgos, D-Phila., will host his End of Summer Blast, a communitywide festival, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 31 at Rivera Recreation Center, located at 3201 N. Fifth St., 19140. “The End of Summer Blast is a great way to celebrate the end of the summer and to kick-off the upcoming school year,” Burgos said. “I’m proud to host this event to celebrate the 197 th Legislative District community.” The event will include: Food. Face painting. Live performances. Amateur boxing tournament. Burgos and his district office staff will be available to answer questions about state issues and programs. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 21 – State Rep. Donna Bullock today said she is the first and only legislator to represent Pennsylvania during this week’s Clean Energy Legislative Academy in Breckenridge, Colo. The four-day conference brings together a bipartisan group of state legislators and their staff from across the country to learn about emerging energy issues and resources they will need to develop effective clean energy policy in their states. “I’m honored to represent Pennsylvania at this important and informative conference. I plan on learning as much as I can from the seminars and panels and legislators from other states,” Bullock said. “Pennsylvania needs laws that will help fight climate change and convert to renewable energy. I want to bring my experiences from this conference back home to not only share with my colleagues, but to craft legislation that would provide better, efficient energy policies for now and our future.” The Clean Energy Legislative Academy will hit on such topics as climate and air quality, securing our energy future, financial markets response to climate risk, and getting to 100% innovation in clean energy technology. Read more
PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 21 – With voters soon going to the polls and casting their ballots on new voting machine technology, state Rep. Angel Cruz will host an event where people can become familiar and comfortable with these new machines. The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 6 at Cruz’s district office at 3503 North B St., Unit 7, 19134. Representatives from the Philadelphia City Commissioner’s Office will be in attendance to provide demonstrations on how the new machines operate. For more information, constituents can call Cruz’s office at 215-291-5643. Read more
HARRISBURG, Aug. 21 – State Rep. Joe Ciresi, today announced a rally in support of S.B. 44, to be known as Victoria’s Law , that will feature several state senators and representatives, as well as local shelter and rescue representatives. The rally will take place at 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 25 at The Upper Merion Township Building Park, 175 W. Valley Forge Road, King of Prussia, PA 19406. In addition to Ciresi, D-Montgomery, the list of participants includes: Sen. Tom Killion , R-Delaware, co-sponsor of S.B. 44. Sen. Andy Dinniman , D-Chester, co-sponsor of S.B. 44. Rep. Frank Farry, R-Bucks. Rep. Tim Briggs, D-Montgomery. Kristen Tullo , Humane Society of the United States, Pennsylvania state director. Grace Kelly Herbert , Finding Shelter Animal Rescue, president and co-founder. Many other humane legislators and shelter/rescue representatives. Several shelters and rescues will be in attendance with rescue puppies and puppy mill survivors. Supporters are encouraged to wear purple and bring their rescued furry friend. Victoria’s Law is a consumer protection bill that would drive the pet market towards more humane sources by prohibiting the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits in pet stores. The bill is named after Victoria, a German shepherd who bred over 150 puppies during her life in a puppy mill. Victoria passed down an incurable disease to her puppies and unknowing consumers who purchased her puppies were faced with high vet bills and Read more
State Reps. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, and Bridget Kosierowski, D-Lackawanna, announced legislation to promote childhood immunizations and protect Pennsylvania residents from preventable diseases. Read more
HARRISBURG, Aug. 20 – State Rep. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, will hold a Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee hearing on H.B. 1568 , which would establish the Pipeline Safety and Communication Board. The hearing will be held at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 21 in Harrisburg in the Irvis Office Building, room G-50. The media and public are invited to attend. Comitta requested the hearing to address how the state legislature can help Pennsylvanians affected by the Mariner East pipeline in Chester County and other pipelines that will impact communities throughout Pennsylvania in the future. “I appreciate Chairmen Barrar and Sainato for holding a hearing on this important bill. Public safety is paramount along the pipeline as it is with any infrastructure project,” Comitta said. “Timely, accurate, and actionable information is key to ensuring public safety. House Bill 1568 asks to establish regular dialogue among state agencies, the industry, legislators, county and local EMS and the public. Such dialogue should result in well-coordinated safety planning and emergency response. It will also identify gaps in legislation, all with the goal to make sure people are and feel safe.” The hearing can also be viewed via livestream at www.pahouse.com. Read more
The question of the appropriate school start time has intrigued me for years, and I’m excited to learn about the recommendations to best address this issue. Read more
SCRANTON, Aug. 20 – Area veterans are invited to take part in the monthly support program next week at the office of state Rep. Marty Flynn. A representative from the American Legion Service Office Outreach program will be in Flynn's office – Jay's Commons, 409 N. Main Ave. – from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Aug. 29 to provide information on services available to veterans and their families. The American Legion representatives are available to discuss education, health care and death benefits. Flynn’s office has added Aug. 29 as a second day for local veterans after all available appointments had been booked on Aug. 28. Legion membership is not required to take advantage of the help, but anyone interested in speaking to the advisers should call and schedule an appointment through Flynn’s office at 570-342-4348. Read more
ERIE, Aug. 19 – State Rep. Bob Merski, D-Erie, held a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing today at Mercyhurst University to discuss ways Pennsylvania can bolster its technology workforce. “It’s clear that the tech industry is only continuing to grow, fueled by businesses’ demand for state-of-the-art information technology and cybersecurity services,” Merski said. “Cities like Erie are quickly becoming home to startup tech companies that bring jobs and help stimulate the economy.” Joining Merski were legislators from across the state, including Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster. Sturla added: “Companies need highly skilled workers to compete, and bridging the skills gap is especially challenging in the tech field, which is constantly evolving.Today’s hearing on how we can bolster our tech workforce to keep pace with demand was a great first step.” Testifiers included Dr. Leanne Roberts, provost and vice president for academic affairs, Mercyhurst University; Steven Mauro, vice president of academic administration, Gannon University; and Karl Sanchak, president and CEO, Erie Innovation District. The hearing was one in a series being held across the state on House Democrats’ Plan4PA, focused on putting people first by growing good jobs, providing health care access, creating quality schools and providing training for jobs in a fair economy. More information about the plan is Read more
ERIE, Aug. 19 – A robust and enthusiastic crowd attended the 7 th Annual Senior Fair & Older Living Expo today hosted by State Rep. Ryan Bizzarro, D-Erie. Visitors who packed the first floor of McDowell Intermediate High School this morning browsed dozens of exhibits and filled their bags with program brochures, state applications and free samples. Many participated in free health screenings. Bizzarro said he particularly enjoyed getting to talk one-on-one with seniors around the community. “Today’s event was one of our best yet, and that’s a testament to the energy and enthusiasm of the nearly 1,700 seniors who stopped by,” Bizzarro said. “I had the chance to talk one-on-one with so many seniors in our community, and once again this year, they wowed me with their enthusiasm and their insights. “There are few things more satisfying than seeing the folks I serve coming out to engage with the community and knowing that they’re leaving with a feeling that they’ve learned some new ways to enrich their lives.” Bizzarro will join state Sen. Michele Brooks to co-host a similar free event – the Edinboro Senior Fair – from 10 a.m. to noon on Friday, Sept. 27, at the Edinboro Volunteer Fire Department, 125 Meadville St. in Edinboro. Read more
SPRINGFIELD, Aug. 19 – State Rep. Jennifer O’Mara, D-Delaware, today announced her appointment to the state legislature’s Public Higher Education Commission. The purpose of the commission is to review and make recommendations related to higher education funding, affordability and effectiveness, administration and operations. O’Mara, who also organized the House Student Debt Caucus, will help develop a higher education funding formula for the 14 Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education universities and four state-related universities, which are Penn State, Pitt, Temple and Lincoln universities. Funding for the 18 higher education institutions will be determined on a case-by-case basis considering factors such as goals for higher education, the commonwealth’s higher education needs, graduation, retention and enrollment rates, student debt and financial aid, and any other factors related to higher education and the distribution of funding. The General Assembly would then need to authorize the proposed funding formula. O’Mara said the commission will also review and make findings and recommendations to the commonwealth, consult with and utilize expert advice, hold public hearings, review other states’ higher education funding formulas and develop proposed legislation based on the commission’s findings. “I’m honored and excited to be in a role where I can actively work toward fighting the student debt crisis Read more
“Let me be clear: I support our rate payers and our workers, and I know that Chester Water is the best water available. Let the conversation begin, and let’s stop the politics.” Read more
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
STROUDSBURG, Aug. 19 – As part of her commitment to address community issues, Rep. Maureen Madden, D-Monroe, is holding a town hall meeting. The meeting is scheduled for 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8 at the Eastern Monroe Public Library, 1002 North Ninth St., Stroudsburg. Citizens can voice their thoughts and concerns regarding Property Tax/Rent Rebate, Real ID and other topics of interest. “Hearing constituents’ concerns is a critical part of improving the neighborhood,” Madden said. “It is an opportunity to speak with them and to not only listen to their concerns, but offer real solutions face to face.” Media is invited to attend. Attention News Editors : Please include the following in your community calendar listings if possible: State Rep. Maureen Madden invites you to her town hall meeting from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8 at the Eastern Monroe Public Library, 1002 North Ninth St., Stroudsburg. For more information, please call Madden’s office at (570) 420-2850. Read more
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