Environmental and permitting hurdles
are among the greatest challenges facing the future of Pennsylvania’s
dairy industry, according to information presented at a joint meeting of
the House and Senate Agriculture and Rural Affairs committees earlier
The meeting was held at Penn State’s
Ag Progress Days in Centre County, and the goal is to help lawmakers
identify and adopt policies that will support and enhance the dairy
industry, which represents the largest sector of the state’s agriculture
Dairy farms, dairy processors and
other related industries represent thousands of jobs and billions of
dollars for our state’s economy, but our dairy industry is struggling.
It is growing at a slower rate than that of other top dairy-producing
states, and in fact, the state was just bumped from its spot as the
fifth highest dairy-producing state in the nation.
While there are a number of factors
influencing this downturn that we cannot control, such as dry weather
and changing markets and consumer demands, we heard about a number of
things we can do to help, including developing more reasonable
environmental policies and proactive economic initiatives to encourage
growth and expansion here in the Commonwealth.
I had a great time at Ulysses Old
Home Day last weekend and was especially honored to take part in the
memorial dedication at Tri-Town Fire and Ambulance Company. Pictured
left to right are: Potter County Commissioner Paul Heimel, Congressman
Glenn "GT" Thompson, Ulysses Mayor Maryjane Haskins, me, Potter County
Commissioner Doug Morley, and Tri-Town Chaplain Jason Reed. Thank you to
the men and women at Tri-Town and all of our volunteer fire and
ambulance personnel for your service!
Fire, EMS Grant Program to Open Sept. 7
The 2016-17 grant program for fire
companies and ambulance services will be open for applications starting
on Sept. 7.
These important public safety grants
may be used for construction or renovation of a unit’s station, the
purchase or repair of equipment, training or debt reduction. The maximum
grant amount is $15,000 for fire companies and $10,000 for volunteer
ambulance services. Since its inception, the grant program has provided
nearly $4.5 million in funding to fire and ambulance companies in the
A total of $30 million will be
awarded through the program, which is funded through state gaming
For more information about the program, click here. The application period closes on Oct. 21.
Slow Down for School Buses
As students head back to school,
it’s a good time to refresh our memories about school bus safety.
Pennsylvania law requires that
motorists stop at least 10 feet away from school buses when their red
lights are flashing and their stop arm is extended. Motorists following
or traveling alongside a school bus must also stop until the red lights
have stopped flashing, the stop arm is withdrawn, and all children have
Penalties for failure to obey school
bus safety laws can result in a $250 fine, five points on a driving
record and a 60-day license suspension.
Parents are reminded to ensure that
their children are at the bus stop early to avoid rushing. Students
should stay where the bus driver can see them while boarding or exiting
Click here for more information and tips for school bus safety.
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