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Friday, October 31, 2014

Capitol Update by Rep. Martin Causer

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Capitol Update
Friday, October 31, 2014 The latest news from the State Capitol

What’s Happening at Denton Hill State Park

Many people have been in contact with my office about the possibility that Ski Denton at Denton Hill State Park may not open this season for financial reasons.
Rest assured that I share your concerns and disappointment.

The park is a wonderful place enjoyed by so many of us in the area, and it has great potential to offer year-round recreation. Despite years of calling on the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) to step up and invest in the park’s infrastructure, the facility has been virtually ignored by state officials. Considering the financial boost the state gets from the thousands of acres of state-owned land in our region, it is certainly fair to expect some of that money to be invested here at

I have spoken with DCNR in recent weeks about this situation and am encouraged the department has agreed to conduct a feasibility study to identify ways to not only improve skiing at the park but also open up other year-round recreational

Please know I am committed to working with the concessionaire, DCNR and Sen. Joe Scarnati to do all we can to keep the ski area open. And by working together, I believe we can look forward to a brighter future for Denton Hill State Park.

Bucktail Regiment Memorial Bridge Dedication

Many thanks to the Smethport American Legion and McKean County Historical Society for putting together a fantastic program for the dedication of the Bucktail Regiment Memorial Bridge in Smethport last weekend. The Route 6 bridge over Marvin Creek was designated in honor of the regiment under Act 99 of 2014, which I sponsored. The Bucktails were a group of young recruits from Cameron, Elk, McKean and Tioga counties who rose to the defense of the Union following the bombing of Fort Sumter in April 1861. It was so named because its members adopted the tail of the whitetail buck as their badge of honor and adorned their caps with it. 


Congratulations Emporium!

It was my pleasure to present a citation in honor of Emporium’s 150th anniversary. Pictured with me are Pat Garrigan, Pat Vogt, Rick Bauer, Ben Newton, Mayor Bruno Carnovale, Luann Reed and Borough Manager Don Reed.


Update on New Gun Rights Law

Last week, I wrote about legislation passed by the General Assembly to further deter local governments from passing their own gun laws or ordinances (which already is a violation of state law). House Bill 80 was signed into law earlier this week as Act 192 of 2014 and will take effect in 60 days. The law gives legal standing to any person who has been adversely affected by any regulation put forth or enforced in violation of state law, and to seek injunctive and declarative relief, as well as to recover damages.

New Law Helps Seniors Keep Property Tax/Rent Rebate Eligibility

With just over two months left to apply for the 2013 Property Tax/Rent Rebate program, a new law aims to insure continued eligibility for people who received Social Security cost-of-living increases this year.

Under Act 156 of 2014, any homeowner who receives Social Security, was paid a property tax rebate in 2013 for claim year 2012 and had annual income up to $35,298 last year would still qualify for a rebate for the 2013 claim year. Similarly, renters who receive Social Security, were paid a rent rebate in 2013 for claim year 2012 and had annual incomes last year up to $15,128 would qualify and are encouraged to apply. Claims already filed that meet these parameters are under automatic review by the Department of Revenue.

The deadline to apply for the 2013 Property Tax/Rent Rebate program is Dec. 31. For additional information and assistance, contact my offices in Bradford (78 Main St., first floor, 814-362-4400) or Coudersport (107 S. Main St., Room 1, 814-274-9769) or visit

Additional information about the law is available here

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