I am pleased that you are reading my e-newsletter. These e-newsletters provide information about issues, events and activities in Harrisburg and around the 14th Senatorial District.
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Property Tax/Rent Rebate Outreach Events
Every year, my staff helps hundreds of residents apply for the Property Tax/Rent Rebate program. We have scheduled a number of events in the district to help residents apply for this invaluable program over the next month. You can also always visit my district offices in Nanticoke or Jim Thorpe if you need assistance.
Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway Trains Return!
The Reading and Northern Railroad and Borough of Jim Thorpe recently announced that they have resolved their amusement tax dispute. The Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway ceased rides on November 25 as a result of the dispute, but the train excursion is now back in operation, with its first rides being last weekend during Jim Thorpe’s Winterfest celebration.
I appreciate the efforts of Jim Thorpe Borough officials and local business leaders who worked with Reading & Northern Railroad to ensure the trains will continue to run and tourism will continue to thrive in beautiful Jim Thorpe.
The Reading and Northern Railroad also recently announced the completion of a $14 million bridge in Nesquehoning that will connect the company’s Reading and Lehigh Divisions, which will help expedite freight travel between the Reading and Scranton area. Public funding and a 30 percent match from the Reading and Northern Railroad was used to construct the bridge.
Senate Bill 906 is Vetoed by Governor Wolf
Last week, Governor Wolf vetoed Senate Bill 906, a bipartisan bill which would have created the Task Force on the Closure of State Facilities to analyze and manage the closure of any state center and prevent the closure of those centers for a minimum of 5 years.
Senator Baker, Brooks, Hutchinson and I were profoundly disappointed by the Governor’s veto. The Administration’s decision to close White Haven and Polk State Centers ignores the voices of families and mounting data that underscores the shortcomings of limiting choices on how best to serve individuals with intellectual disabilities. Furthermore, the Governor’s veto of Senate Bill 906 is devastating for the family members, the dedicated employees and the individuals with intellectual disabilities who call White Haven and Polk State Centers home.
Hazleton Red Carpet Breakfast
I was happy to speak at the Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce’s Red Carpet Breakfast Series. The breakfast is one of the region’s best forums to talk policy, politics and progress on growing the economy in northeastern Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania “Do Not Call” List Now Permanent
Legislation providing for a permanent “Do Not Call” List has been signed into law as Act 73 of 2019. Additional provisions require a telemarketer using robocalls to provide an opt-out process for the called party within the first few seconds of each call and to include a toll-free call back number that directly connects a person to the opt-out process if a message is left. Telemarketing calls are also now prohibited on legal holidays. The “Do Not Call” List is administered and maintained by the Office of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
According to the Office of the Attorney General, all consumers previously registered are permanently enrolled and not required to re-register. Click here to enroll on the “Do Not Call” List and here to verify your number is registered and/or submit a complaint.
Good luck THON dancers!
The Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon, or THON kicks off on February 21. THON is the largest student run philanthropy in the world and is a year-long effort which raises funds and awareness for the fight against childhood cancer, culminating with a 46 hour, no sitting, no-sleeping dance marathon.
I am so proud to be a Penn State Alum and support this important cause. Best of luck to all the dancers and everyone who works with THON. Cancer cannot win!
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