Senator Mario Scavello E-Newsletter

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In this Update:

  • Community Blood Drive NEXT THURSDAY!
  • Northampton County Small Business Grant Program
  • Veterans Assistance Office Hours Have Resumed
  • Emergency Rental Assistance Program Available
  • Legislative Review: Pandemic Response
  • Senate Hearing Explores the Impact of the PA Workforce Shortage
  • DMVA: Important to Safeguard DD-214 Military Paperwork
  • Unclaimed Property Waiting for PA Residents
  • Plenty of PA Trip Ideas Available
  • Around the 40th District

Community Blood Drive NEXT THURSDAY!

Next Thursday, August 5th from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., I will be partnering with the American Red Cross for a Community Blood Drive at my Monroe County district office in Scotrun. CLICK HERE to schedule an appointment. My Scotrun office is located at: 2398 Route 611, Scotrun, PA 18355. We are currently experiencing a severe national blood shortage and need your help! Your donation can save a life!

CLICK HERE to schedule an appointment.

Northampton County Small Business Grant Program

The Northampton County COVID-19 Relief Small Business Grant Program has re-opened and is now accepting applications! Northampton County Council has approved this Grant Program and partnered with the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce to distribute $15 million dollars of ARP Funds to Northampton County small businesses with 100 or fewer employees.

Please visit https://www.lehighvalleychamber.org/norcogrants.html to view or download the eligibility guidelines and to apply for up to $15,000 to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 related expenses.

Please Note: This grant is eligible to businesses that have NOT previously received the Northampton County COVID-19 Relief Small Business Grant.

Deadline to apply: Tuesday, August 31, 2021

For more information or any questions, please reach out to Jessica O’Donnell at 610-673 4010 or Brittany Keal 610-295-9824.

Veterans Assistance Office Hours Have Resumed

Veterans Assistance office hours are again be offered in person at both of my district offices. During the pandemic, this service was still available to assist veterans but only by phone. We are thrilled to once again offer in person appointments with an American Legion Service Officer, conveniently located at my district offices. If you would like to setup an appointment for a veteran please call the office which is most convenient for you.

Pen Argyl (Northampton County):

Appointments are available on the third Wednesday of each month between the hours of 10am and 2:30pm. For appointments please call 610-863-1200

Scotrun (Monroe County): 

Appointments are available on the second Tuesday of each month between the hours of 10am and 2:30pm. For appointments please call 570-620-4326

Emergency Rental Assistance Program Available

The federal eviction moratorium ends Sat. July 31st. Families facing eviction can find help through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP). These state appropriated federal dollars can provide help for renters as well as landlords.

For those residing in Monroe County you can contact Pocono Mountains United Way for more info and to apply. Learn more and apply for assistance today.

For those residing in the Northampton County portion of my district you can contact Third Street Alliance for Women & Children for more info and to apply. Northampton County tenants can start by calling Tenant Navigators Ziana Keith at 610-438-1763 or Elizabeth T. Reyes at 610-258-6272 to begin the application process, or start it online.

Legislative Review: Pandemic Response

When Pennsylvania voters chose overwhelmingly this year to amend the state Constitution and limit the length of a governor’s unchecked emergency powers, they were weighing in on ballot questions created through Senate legislation.

Other measures passed by the Senate this year to safely respond to the COVID-19 pandemic include:

Act 1 of 2021 amending the state Fiscal Code to allocate $569.8 million for Rental and Utility Assistance, $197 million for education programs, and $145 million to support Pennsylvania’s struggling restaurants and taverns as they cope with the devastation created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the governor’s mandated closings and restrictions. 

Act 21 of 2021 ensuring all waivers previously effective under the COVID-19 emergency will remain in effect until Sept. 30, 2021, unless sooner terminated by the authority which initially authorized the waiver.

Act 67 of 2021 allowing family members to safely visit long-term care facilities during a pandemic as essential caregivers. 

Senate Resolution 90 extending the emergency temporary rules adopted to maintain continuity of operations of the Senate during the COVID-19 disaster emergency.

House Resolution 106 terminating the pandemic emergency declaration and ending the governor’s power to close employers, limit occupancy, suspend state statutes or issue stay-at-home orders due to COVID-19.

You can find a full list of bills of note passed by the Senate in 2021 here.

Senate Hearing Explores the Impact of the PA Workforce Shortage

The economic impact of the workforce shortage facing Pennsylvania employers was the topic of a public hearing Wednesday by the Senate Community, Economic and Recreational Development Committee.

Pennsylvania is facing a serious workforce crisis that is threatening our employers and slowing our economic recovery. Businesses across the Commonwealth have been forced to curtail their hours of operation or even close because of a workforce shortage. The panel heard from the PA Chamber of Business and Industry, local employers and the PA Restaurant and Lodging Association in order to fully identify the employers’ needs and the role the General Assembly can play in creating an environment for economic growth and job creation.

You can view hearing video and more here.

DMVA: Important to Safeguard DD-214 Military Paperwork

The Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs urges veterans to safeguard their DD-214. For veterans who have lost this important document, or family members who cannot locate it on a veteran’s behalf, the DMVA can assist in retrieving an official copy.  

The DD-214 is issued by the U.S. Department of Defense upon a military servicemember’s retirement, separation or discharge from active duty. It contains information needed to verify military service for benefits, retirement, employment and membership in veterans’ organizations. Without this key document, there could be a big delay when veterans seek benefits earned through their service to our nation.

The DMVA can also assist with locating the DD-215, which is used to correct errors or make additions to a DD-214, helping to assure that veterans have accurate discharge documentation.

Anyone needing assistance from the DMVA to locate their DD-214/215, or other military documentation, can call toll-free 1-800-547-2838 or email RA-REQ@pa.gov. More information about locating military documents can be found by visiting the Records Request Program 

Unclaimed Property Waiting for PA Residents

Millions in unclaimed property is secured in the Pennsylvania Treasury vault. An updated website has been launched to help residents look for and retrieve their unclaimed property. 

Dormant accounts from financial institutions and other entities must be reported to the PA Treasury by April 15 each year. The vault includes tangibles such as jewelry, coins, collector cards and war medals previously abandoned in safe deposit boxes. In fact, one in 10 state residents have unclaimed property waiting for them.

Whether your search yields enough for a latte or a steak dinner or more, take a few minutes to enter into the Treasury’s database your name and the name of family members. For additional assistance, you may contact the Bureau of Unclaimed Property at 800-222-2046.  

Plenty of PA Trip Ideas Available

There’s plenty of summer left and plenty of ideas for getting away in our beautiful Commonwealth.

VisitPA.com can help you find day trips and more to lakes and beaches, experience hiking and camping, sample city life or explore our rich history.

Resources are available to help you plan your trip. You can also order a Happy Traveler Guide or view it online.

Around the 40th District

Saturday we congratulated the newest Eagle Scout of Troop 41, Dominic Martocci! Dominic constructed a beautiful gazebo at the Roseto Ball Park. Best wishes Dominic in all your future endeavors!

This past Sunday, we presented Joshua Richter of Troop 76 in Nazareth with a senate citation for achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. For his Eagle Scout project Joshua built a gaga ball pit at Life Church in Lower Nazareth Township. Joshua is pictured here with his parents Sharon and Marc. Congratulations Joshua! Best wishes in all that you do going forward!

This morning we helped cut the ribbon on the new Sheetz located on Route 611 in Scotrun. SHEETZ believes its important for their employees to stay involved with their local community. At new store openings, SHEETZ donates money to benefit both the state and local chapters of Special Olympics as part of their grand opening ceremonies. They also collect money for Special Olympics year-round in donation cans on the counters in our stores. Through donation cans and employee contributions, they have raised more than $2.5 million dollars for Special Olympics since 1991.

Also they actively work with the Salvation Army to identify needy families and collect their holiday wish lists. Through their Sheetz For the Kidz program, they made the season brighter for over 9,700 children in each of their operating areas last year! Thrilled to welcome such a community minded company to the area!

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