Jan. 10, 2020 / Weekly Roundup

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The Weekly Roundup
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol
 
Local Residents Win Big at PA Farm Show


Time is running out to visit the 104th Pennsylvania Farm Show in Harrisburg. The largest indoor exposition of its kind along the East Coast wraps up this Saturday, Jan. 11.

I’ve been at the Farm Show and have had the chance to meet up with residents who either entered their animals or products in competitive exhibits, participated in the many interactive contests, took in the entertaining and educational displays, or tasted the hundreds of different food items made right here in Pennsylvania.

I presented a scholarship check to Erin Comp, who is a graduate of Susquenita High School and an animal science major at Penn State University; met FFA officers; and competed in the Celebrity Draft Horse Competition. What a great week!

Locally, the 86th District is boasting a lot of blue-ribbon entries in this year’s Farm Show. Be sure to check out the list of winners on the Farm Show website!
 
 
Applications for 2020 Pennsylvania House Scholarship Available

High school seniors interested in receiving financial assistance to help pay for college can now apply for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ Scholarship.

Each year the program awards a four-year scholarship to two students preparing for post-secondary education. It is open to graduating high school seniors who are Pennsylvania residents with plans to attend a Pennsylvania college, university or career school as a full-time student.

To qualify, students must have attained a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average in high school. Other factors taken into consideration for the awards are a student’s commitment to community, leadership qualities, extracurricular activities and financial need.

The scholarship program is administered through the Foundation for Enhancing Communities. The application is available through the foundation’s web site here.  The application deadline is March 1.

The scholarship is privately funded by individual and corporate donors; no tax or other public funds are used. Scholarships are awarded through an independent panel of judges chosen by the foundation.
 
 
Does Your Home Contain Radon?

An estimated 40% of Pennsylvania homes have higher levels of radon than national safety standards, due to the state’s geology. However, residents can perform a simple test to detect this gas, which is considered the second leading cause of lung cancer.

Radon is an odorless, colorless radioactive gas that occurs naturally from the breakdown of uranium in soil and rocks and enters homes through cracks in the foundation or other openings. High levels of radon tend to be found in basements, but the gas can be found anywhere in the home.

Winter is a good time to test for radon, because doors and windows are generally closed, providing more accurate results. Simple radon test kits are inexpensive and available at home improvement and hardware stores.

January is national Radon Action Month. For more information on radon, click here.
 
 
Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement Pre-Enforcement Period Underway

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) announced that the required 60-day pre-enforcement period for the statewide Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement (AWZSE) program has begun and will last until March 4.

Pennsylvania’s AWZSE program uses vehicle-mounted systems to detect and record motorists exceeding posted work zone speed limits using electronic speed timing devices. The goal is to protect the lives of motorists, passengers and highway workers.

During the pre-enforcement period, automated speed enforcement units will be deployed in active work zones, but violations will not be issued. Work zones are selected to maximize the effectiveness of the systems and will be marked with signage in advance of the enforcement area. Additionally, locations are posted on the project website, workZoneCameras.PennDOT.gov.

AWZSE systems are only operational in active work zones where workers are present. Once enforcement begins on March 4, registered owners will receive a warning letter for a first offense, a violation notice and $75 fine for a second offense, and a violation notice and $150 fine for third and subsequent offenses. These violations are civil penalties only; no points will be assessed to driver’s licenses.

In 2018, there were 1,804 work zone crashes in Pennsylvania, resulting in 23 fatalities. Since 1970, PennDOT has lost 89 workers in the line of duty. The PA Turnpike has lost 45 workers since 1945.
 
 
2020 Hemp Program Accepting Applications from Growers, Processors

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s 2020 hemp program is now accepting applications from both commercial growers and processors.

The 2020 application period is open through April 1. This year, both growers and processors of hemp are required to apply. The permitting of processors is new for the 2020 program. Each individual property will require its own permit and application. A permit costs $150.

It is the second year for the program, with farmers planting just over 4,000 acres of hemp across 55 counties in 2019.

Hemp was grown in Pennsylvania and throughout the United States until after World War II but became regulated along with marijuana and its cultivation was prohibited. Unlike marijuana, hemp is also grown for fiber and seed, in addition to floral extracts, and must maintain a much lower concentration of the chemical tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, below the 0.3% legal threshold.

For more information on Pennsylvania’s hemp program, click here. 
 
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Office Locations
Perry County Office, 18 West Main Street, PO Box 9. New Bloomfield PA 17068 | Tel: 717-582-8119
Cumberland County Office, 81 Walnut Bottom Road, P.O. Box 705, Shippensburg, PA 17257 | Tel: 717-477-0905
Room 105 , Ryan Office Building, PO Box 202086. Harrisburg, PA 17120-2086 | Tel: 717-783-1593
Email: mkeller@pahousegop.com
TTY: 855-282-0614 
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