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In this Email Update:
Persian Gulf Conflict Veterans Benefit Program extension
The deadline for Pennsylvania veterans to apply for the Persian Gulf Conflict Veterans’ Bonus has been extended to August 31, 2018.
The bonus is designed to ensure that veterans who courageously served and risked their lives during the Persian Gulf Conflict receive the proper benefits they are entitled to.
The bonus for qualifying, active-duty service members is $75 per month, with up to a $525 maximum. An additional $5,000 is available to the surviving family of personnel whose death was related to illness or injury obtained during the line of duty in Operations Desert Shield or Desert Storm. Service members who were declared prisoners of war may also be eligible to receive an additional $5,000.
In order to qualify for the program, service members must meet the following criteria:
For more information on how to apply for the bonus, please click here.
Route 222 road projects
As many of you have requested, here is the updated Pennsylvania Department of Transportation schedule for the long-delayed design of three projects on Route 222 between Reading and Kutztown, designed to increase the safety of travelers and decrease the long delays on this busy route:
The Route 222/662 intersection is due to begin construction this summer at a cost of $10.2 million.
The Route 222/73/Genesis Drive intersection is due for bids towards the end of 2017 at a cost of $22 million.
The Route 222 Widening from the Reading Bypass to the Kutztown Bypass is currently in the beginning stages of design. The anticipated start date of construction is in 2021 at a cost of $80 million.
North of the Kutztown Bypass, Route 222/Long Lane intersection is being designed at the moment and due to be bid late next year at a cost of $9 million.
Funds from Act 89 of 2013, the comprehensive transportation funding bill, has finally begun to jumpstart several important infrastructure projects statewide. To read more about transportation projects going on in your area, click here . I will continue to work to see this long-needed highway improved. In my mind, the sooner, the better!
“Senator for a Day” program at Penn State Berks
This month’s edition of the Argall Report features local high school students who participated in the “Senator for a Day” program at Penn State’s Berks Campus.
Students from Wilson, Schuylkill Valley, Berks Catholic, Conrad Weiser, Tulpehocken and Blue Mountain Academy were given the opportunity to debate and vote on mock proposals regarding various state-related issues that are currently facing the legislature.
It is always refreshing to see students who are actively involved and interested in state government and the issues that affect their daily lives.
Kudos to this year’s participants!
For more information about the seminar or to view program listings, please click here.
You can also watch the report here.
The Woods in Your Backyard workshop
On February 20th the Schuylkill County Conservancy, DCNR – Bureau of Forestry, Penn State Cooperative Extension – Master Gardeners, Penn State University – Schuylkill Campus, and the Schuylkill Conservation District are hosting a “Woods in Your Backyard” workshop for landowners who own 10 acres of property more or less.
The workshop provides landowners with the opportunity to learn about ways to enhance their property through various landscape planning techniques for recreation and wildlife, as well as ways to demonstrate environmental stewardship with their land.
The workshop will be held at Penn State’s Schuylkill Campus from 8 a.m. – noon at a cost of $15 for an individual and $25 for a couple.
To learn more about the workshop or to register, please contact Lorie Reichert at the Schuylkill Conservation District at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 570-622-3742 ext. 102.
Congratulating Blue Mountain School District superintendent, Dr. Robert L. Urzillo
Last week I joined with Representative Jerry Knowles to present a congratulatory citation to Dr. Urzillo on his retirement as superintendent of Blue Mountain School District and to recognize him for his 42 years of service in the field of education.
Since 1973, Dr. Urzillo has been dedicated to the growth and expansion of our educational system and the academic success of our students.
In his most recent role as superintendent of Blue Mountain School District and also the former superintendent of Conrad Weiser School District in Western Berks County, Dr. Urzillo has been an important educational figure in our schools, and he will certainly be missed.
Congratulations again to Dr. Urzillo and best of luck in future endeavors!
I am pictured here with Dr. Urzillo, Representative Knowles, and Ali Rhoades Hobbs, legislative aide to Representative Tobash.