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Thursday, April 13, 2017

Capitol Update

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Capitol Update
Thursday, April 13, 2017 The latest news from the State Capitol
Members of the House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee visited the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank in Harrisburg recently to learn more about its operations and about Feeding Pennsylvania, a network of eight regional food banks with 2,600 community partners across the state. In addition to a brief tour of the facility, a roundtable discussion with representatives from food banks across the state, lawmakers and officials from statewide agriculture groups was also held. A primary topic of discussion was efforts to work with the agriculture community to obtain fresh produce, eggs and dairy products for people in need that may otherwise be wasted. Learn more about Feeding Pennsylvania at
House OKs Bill to Eliminate Inheritance Tax on Certain Transfers
Legislation to eliminate the inheritance tax for transfers of property from a parent to a child age 21 and younger passed the state House recently. Currently, property transferred from a parent to a minor child is subject to an inheritance tax rate of 4.5 percent.

However, property transfers from a child age 21 or younger to a natural parent, adoptive parent or step-parent are exempt from the tax, and House Bill 291 seeks to exempt property transfers from the tax in the reverse order. This would be especially beneficial to farmers who often leave the family farm to their children.

The measure now goes to the Senate for consideration.
Tax-Free Savings Accounts for People with Disabilities Now Available
Tax-free savings accounts aimed at helping people with disabilities save money for future care and services are now available through the Pennsylvania Treasury. The PA ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) accounts are structured similar to tuition savings accounts and allow people with disabilities, their family members and friends to contribute up to $14,000 per year to a maximum account limit of $511,758. Once the limit is reached, accounts can continue to earn interest.

Withdrawals from the account will be exempt from both state and federal income taxes as long as the funds are used for “qualified disability expenses.” These include, but are not limited to, education, housing, transportation, employment training/support and assistive technology.

For more information about the accounts and eligibility, click here
Reminder: Career Fair for Potter County Juniors, Seniors
The Potter County Education Council will host its annual career and job fair for high school juniors and seniors on Thursday, April 20, from 9-11:30 a.m. at the Northern Potter Field House in Ulysses.

Local and regional businesses, industries and employers of all sizes are invited to meet with local juniors and seniors about job opportunities. They need not have current job openings to participate, just a willingness to help educate youth about potential local careers.

There is no cost for employer participation, but participants are asked to pre-register with Janine Morley at the 814-274-4877 by April 12. More information is available at
April is Donate Life Month
To raise awareness of the life-saving benefits of organ donation, House Resolution 209 passed the House recently to designate April 2017 as National Donate Life Month in Pennsylvania.

According to Donate Life America, more than 33,000 transplants brought life to patients during the last year. However, more than 118,000 men, women and children still need organ transplants. In Pennsylvania, almost 8,000 people are on the organ transplant list and, on average, every 18 hours one of them will die waiting for the call that never comes.

About 4.6 million Pennsylvanians have said “yes” to organ and tissue donation by adding the donor designation on their driver’s license. In addition, more than 134 million people, or about 54 percent of the adult population in the United States, are registered donors.

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