Sep. 27, 2019 / Weekly Roundup

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Legislative Report 
The latest news from the State Capitol
Last Call for Showcasing the Trades Career Opportunity Event

Click here to view video.

My latest Mon Valley Moment video features important updates on our first-ever Showcasing the Trades event, which will be held this Saturday, Sept. 28, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Mon Valley Career and Technical Center, 5 Guttman Ave., Charleroi.

For this event, we have extended an invitation to all our trade unions and other potential employers to share with our future student leaders and current job seekers of all ages the outstanding opportunities, competitive pay and benefits that a trades career can offer them.

Best of all, these family-sustaining jobs are available NOW!

Here’s the list of ready-to-hire participants scheduled to attend:
• Douglas Education Center.
• GMS Corporate.
• Intermediate Unit 1.
• Intermediate Unit 3.
• Intermediate Unit 7.
• International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local # 5.
• International Union of Painters and Allied Trades.
• Mon Valley Initiative.
• Penn Commercial Business and Technical School.
• Plasterers and Cement Masons Local # 526.
• Plumbers and Pipefitters Local # 354.
• Sheet Metal Workers Local #12.
• United Mine Workers of America.
• Waste Management.

Don’t miss this exclusive opportunity to see what new doors are open for the people of the 49th Legislative District. For more information, please contact our Belle Vernon district office at 724-929-2660.
No Public Assistance Funds for Tobacco Purchases


The House recently approved legislation that would prohibit the purchase of tobacco products using public assistance funds on electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards.

House Bill 847 would forbid the use of EBT cards, issued by the Department of Human Services (DHS) to administer public assistance benefits, to purchase tobacco or tobacco-related products. Personal funds on EBT cards, such as child support that is in arrears, would be exempt. The Human Services Code already prohibits the purchase of liquor and alcohol with EBT cards.

The bill now goes to the Senate for its consideration.
PA Farmers Could ‘REAP’ Benefits of $13 Million in Tax Credits

Applications for as much as $13 million in tax credits to farmers who promote sustainable farming practices are now available through Pennsylvania’s nationally recognized Resource Enhancement and Protection Program (REAP).

REAP tax credits benefit agricultural producers who implement best management practices or purchase equipment that reduces the amount of nutrient and sediment runoff and improves the quality of Pennsylvania’s waters.

This is the 12th year Pennsylvania farmers have been able to take advantage of REAP tax credits. As a result of the PA Farm Bill, this year funding has increased to $13 million, up from $10 million.

In addition, farmers may now receive up to $250,000 in any seven-year period, and spouses filling jointly can use REAP Tax Credits.

REAP applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. The basic eligibility requirements are that producers must be in compliance with the PA Clean Streams Law and the Pennsylvania Nutrient and Odor Management Law.

The 2019-20 REAP application packet, as well as other information about REAP, is available on the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s website,
State Issues Warning About New Mosquito-Transmitted Disease

Earlier this week, the Pennsylvania Departments of Agriculture and Health warned Pennsylvanians to take precautionary measures against mosquito bites for themselves and their animals – specifically horses – as the rare mosquito-transmitted viral infection Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) has been confirmed in Erie, Carbon and Monroe counties.

EEE is a virus carried by birds. If a mosquito bites an infected bird it can then transmit the potentially fatal virus to humans, horses and other birds. Because of the high mortality rate in horses and humans, EEE is regarded as one of the most serious mosquito-borne diseases in the United States.

Through mid-September, there have been 18 cases reported to the CDC from across the country in 2019, with the majority of the cases in northeastern or Mid-Atlantic states. Several cases have been fatal.

The symptoms of EEE include a high fever of 103-106 degrees), stiff neck, headache and lack of energy. The symptoms typically show up three to 10 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito and can progress quickly.

Take steps to protect against mosquito bites by consistently using DEET-containing insect repellants and covering exposed skin with lightweight clothing. To reduce mosquito populations around your home, eliminate sources of standing water, such as containers and pots, wading pools, bird baths, gutters and more.

Read more here.
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