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Friday, April 7, 2017

Capitol Update



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Capitol Update
Friday, April 07, 2017 The latest news from the State Capitol
                      
Area Farm Bureau, 4-H Members Visit Capitol 
              
 
I was happy to welcome Port Allegany students and 4-H members Marcus Murphy, Evie Russell and Devon Briggs to the Capitol on Monday!

 
Thank you to members of the McKean/Potter and Potter/Tioga Farm Bureaus for traveling to Harrisburg on Tuesday for Farm Bureau Day at the state Capitol! I was also honored to address members of Farm Bureaus across the state during the annual luncheon in Harrisburg.
                           
                             
 
Working Toward an On-Time, Fiscally Responsible Budget
                
The state House approved a $31.52 billion budget proposal this week that includes no new taxes or borrowing and actually spends less than the current year’s budget. It is a fiscally responsible plan that respects the people who have to foot the bill – the taxpayers. It focuses on the core functions of government, such as education and public safety, and aims to improve efficiencies by eliminating duplication of services and limiting bureaucracy.

The budget proposal included in House Bill 218 cuts spending by more than $245 million compared to the current year’s budget and by more than $800 million compared to the plan put forth by Gov. Tom Wolf in February. The cuts are aimed at ensuring bureaucratic efficiencies while maintaining necessary programs and services.

We’ve been working to rein in spending since the Rendell years, but that has become more difficult in the Wolf administration. This year, the governor changed course by offering a budget that made a number of cuts, and while I do not agree with all of them and would prioritize the available funding differently, it was good to at least see some acknowledgement from him that our government needs to be more efficient.

It is important to note we are still early in the budget process. Negotiations are ongoing, and I fully expect the proposal will be modified over the next two months as we approach the June 30 deadline. I will continue to advocate for a final budget that best serves the needs of rural Pennsylvania.
                         
                      
 
Keeping Jobs in Cameron County
                        
With support from the state Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), Embassy Powdered Metals Inc. will acquire American Sintered Technologies (AST) in Cameron County and retain both companies’ existing workforces.

Embassy will invest more than $3 million in the purchase, which includes AST’s real estate and machinery and equipment assets. Embassy has committed to retaining a combined total of 96 full-time employees from the two companies over the next three years.

Embassy received a funding proposal from DCED that includes a $250,000 Pennsylvania First Program grant and $32,400 in WEDnetPA funding for employee training.
                         
                                  
 
Mentored Youth Trout Day This Saturday
                          
Looking for an opportunity to get your kids to enjoy the great outdoors? The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission is hosting its Mentored Youth Trout Day this Saturday, April 8. Youth under the age of 16 can join a mentor (adult) angler who has a current fishing license and trout permit to fish for trout. Click here for more information about the program. 

Next Saturday, April 15, marks the opening day of trout season. For more information about fishing licenses or regulations, to check the online stocking schedule, or to download the FishBoatPA app, click here.
                                     
                       
 
Veterans Assistance Available Monday in Bradford
                    
Melissa Davis of the Veterans of Foreign Wars will be available at my Bradford office this Monday, April 10, from 1-3 p.m. to assist veterans and their family members with issues such as compensation, education, pension, health care and death benefits. No appointments are necessary and you need not be a member of the organization to receive assistance. The office is located at 78 Main St., first floor, in Bradford.

Can’t make it? For information about future veterans outreach dates and locations, click here

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