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In this Email Update:
My monthly TV show focuses on the Senate Appropriations Committee’s three-week series of budget hearings regarding Governor Wolf’s proposed 2015-16 state spending plan.
Watch the program here.
The program focuses on concerns I raised during the hearings, including several questions regarding the governor’s proposal for a temporary property tax cut in exchange for permanent increases in the Sales Tax and the Personal Income Tax. Highlights are included from hearings with representatives from the Governor’s Office of the Budget, the Independent Fiscal Office and the Departments of Agriculture, Corrections, Education, Environmental Protection and Revenue.
Learn more about the hearings here.
The program will air on:
Whether maintaining your property or engaging in recreational and leisure activities, Pennsylvania residents in all 67 counties should be vigilant about preventing exposure to deer ticks and Lyme disease, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PaDOH).
Prevent contracting the disease through the prompt and careful removal of the tick with tweezers, followed by application of rubbing alcohol to the bite area and your hands. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer details on the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease.
Motorists heading out for work or play are being asked to Remember to Steer Clear of road crews, emergency personnel, and law enforcement as they perform their jobs. Pennsylvania motorists have been involved in 10,586 work zone crashes resulting in the loss of 128 lives over the past five years. To avoid penalties under the Steer Clear Law, drivers who are approaching an emergency responder should slow down and move over at least one lane whenever possible. Violators face a $250 fine for failure to move over or slow down and a doubling of fines for traffic violations occurring in emergency response areas. A 90-day license suspension can also be imposed for a violation resulting in injury to workers.
When entering a posted work zone, turn on your vehicle’s headlights. Current law provides for a 15-day license suspension for exceeding the posted speed limit in an active work zone by 11 miles per hour. Motorists convicted of homicide by vehicle in an active work zone face up to five years of additional jail time.
On Thursday, my friend and colleague, Senator Mike Folmer (R-Lebanon), joined me in Pottsville to discuss a proposal he authored to provide for the legalization of medical marijuana. As a cosponsor, I thought it was important to bring interested individuals from the community together to discuss the issue further.
The 2014 county population estimate by the U.S. Census Bureau for Schuylkill County finds the population declining from 148,289 in 2010 to 145,797 in 2014 representing a 1.7 percent decrease. This marks the first time since the mid-1880s that the population has fallen below 146,000.
The decline is due in large part to death rate outpacing the birth rate by 2,142, as well as 350 residents leaving the county over the four-year period.
The Center for Rural Pennsylvania estimates Schuylkill County’s population will grow to 154,676 by 2020, and over 165,000 by 2040.
Berks County’s population during the 2010 Census was 411,587.
The estimate in 2014 was 413,691. The county’s population is expected to increase to 440,143 by 2020 and over 495,000 by 2040.
UGI Utilities, Inc. is upgrading pipelines throughout the City of Pottsville. The construction project also provides an opportunity for homes and businesses without natural gas service to convert to natural gas. Individuals and businesses along the project route should contact UGI if interested in converting to natural gas during construction at 1-800-652-0550.
PACE/PACENET Program will be reaching out to all of its enrollees in an effort to update various demographic information, including address, telephone numbers and emergency contacts. If you are enrolled in PACE/PACENET, please fill out the form and send it back in its prepaid envelope. The information has no effect on participation with these programs.
The form also includes a section to learn more about other valuable benefits that may be available to enrollees, including Medicare Extra Help/LIS, Property Tax/Rent Rebate, LIHEAP and SNAP/food stamps