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In this Email Update:
Opioid epidemic community forum
Addressing the growing opioid epidemic that is harming our communities is critical. In an effort to create an open dialogue, I will be joining a number of elected officials, law enforcement officials, healthcare professionals and community advocacy groups at a community forum hosted by Coordinated Health to discuss the opioid problem.
This event will provide the public with the opportunity to ask questions and voice their concerns about opioid abuse and prevention.
The community forum will be held on Saturday, August 6 at the Parkland High School Auditorium near Allentown from 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
More information about the forum can be viewed here.
Schuylkill County Addictions Awareness and Recovery Solutions event
The Schuylkill County Drug and Alcohol Program will be presenting the Schuylkill County Addictions Awareness and Recovery Solutions Event in order to increase awareness about addiction in our communities and offer tools and information about recovery and treatment for individuals who have been impacted by substance abuse.
Some of the topics that will be discussed at this event include treatment options, mental health and legal issues, as well as support for individuals and their families who are recovering from addiction.
The event will be held on Thursday, September 1 at Martz Hall in Pottsville from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. The guest speaker at the event will be Chris Herren, a former NBA player and nationally recognized speaker on recovery.
For more information about the event or to reserve a table for your agency or organization, please contact the Drug and Alcohol Administrator, Melissa Chewey, at 570-621-2890 ext. 104 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Handling the summer heat
As we continue into the summer season with a few heat waves here and there, it is important that we use our electricity wisely in order to endure the hot temperatures.
Here are some tips from FirstEnergy that residents can use inside their homes during the summertime:
For more tips on how to stay cool during the heat, click here.
DCNR and DEP grants for planting trees along Pennsylvania’s streams
In order to improve water quality in Pennsylvania, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) are providing grants to landowners who are interested in planting trees along streams to help achieve this goal.
According to the departments, the state’s goal is to plant 95,000 acres of streamside buffers by 2025. By planting trees along waterways, this blocks land sediments and nutrients from going into the water and also helps to provide cooler water temperatures for living organisms in the streams.
DCNR is providing $500,000 to a pilot program for this year. The DCNR Community Conservation Partnership Program grant round will be open on August 1, 2016 until September 15, 2016. Local governments in the state, non-profit organizations and educational organizations are eligible to apply.
For more information about the grant program, please click here.
Pennsylvania Farm Conservation Tax Credit Program applications available
Applications for the 2016-17 Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) program tax credits are now available for Pennsylvania farmers.
Created in 2007, REAP provides farmers with incentives to utilize best management practices or buy equipment and materials that reduce negative environmental impacts such as erosion on Pennsylvania’s watersheds and streams. Since its establishment, REAP has given over $50 million in tax credits to 3,900 projects.
Farmers who are interested in this program are qualified to receive tax credits of up to $150,000 per agricultural operation for 50-75 percent of the project’s cost.
For more information about REAP and how to apply, please click here.
Drought watch for Berks and Schuylkill counties
DEP recently issued a drought watch for Berks and Schuylkill counties, along with 32 other counties across the state given the low amounts of precipitation, decreasing groundwater levels and low stream flows.
Under the drought watch, it is advised that a 5 percent reduction take place for non-essential water use. DEP will notify all water suppliers in counties that have drought declarations in order for them to take the necessary measures to examine their water supplies and revise their drought contingency plans as needed.
In order to reduce water use, DEP recommends the following actions:
For more information about the drought and water conservation efforts, please click here.