School Safety Grants Awarded
5/3/2019
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Weekly Roundup
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol

School Safety Grants Awarded

Earlier this week, the School Safety and Security Committee, of which I am a member, awarded $40 million in School Safety and Security Grants to school districts across the state, including Burgettstown Area, Trinity Area and West Allegheny in the 46th Legislative District.

The 17-member committee within the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency was created as part of Act 44 of 2018, a comprehensive school safety law passed in 2018. One of its duties is to help distribute the two-phase $52.5 million grant program. In the first portion, which was awarded late last year, each school district that applied received $25,000 for safety initiatives, including school safety assessments, security equipment, trainings and to hire school resource officers. The second part, which was awarded this week, was a competitive program.

Those receiving grants are:
• Burgettstown Area School District – $122,762.
• Trinity Area School District – $60,056.
• West Allegheny School District – $89,243.
                                   

Good News for PA Budget, Taxpayers
We have some great economic news to report related to the state budget!

State revenue collections are more than $828 million ahead of estimates with two months to go in the current fiscal year. But that does not mean we should be spending it all.

House and Senate Republicans came together earlier this week to stress our intention to devote much of the additional funding to building up the state’s reserves for the next “rainy day” to help ensure we can weather the next economic slowdown.

The Commonwealth’s revenue growth is the result of pro-growth policies and our commitment to standing up for taxpayers – and standing against excessive taxes and spending proposed by the governor over the last several years.

We will continue that commitment through this year’s budget negotiations. A final 2019-20 state budget is due by June 30.

Find further details on Pennsylvania’s revenues here.

Watch the press conference here.
 

Government Done Right – Pennsylvania Needs an Upgrade
House Republicans are devoting the month of May to giving our state government a long-overdue upgrade.

Having “government done right” means upgrading to a more effective and efficient government while providing core services. It means repealing out-of-date laws, reexamining the effectiveness of some state boards and commissions, and putting a stop to the red tape and overregulation that has tied the hands of job creators and hampered economic progress.

We kicked off the effort this week by passing House Bill 762 to require state agencies to designate a regulatory compliance officer to facilitate better understanding of new and existing regulations and boost compliance rates among affected businesses.

We also passed House Bill 509, which would boost transparency in the permitting process by requiring agencies to post information online and create an accessible tracking system for applicants to check the status of their applications.

Finally, we started a spring cleaning of sorts to get rid of some our most outdated, irrelevant laws. These include measures that regulate when things can or cannot happen on Sundays, such as movie times, baseball and football games and even playing music. Other laws we are working to repeal include antiquated sections of our Public School Code and the Scotland School for Veterans’ Children, which closed in 2009.

You can read more about what we are doing to improve Pennsylvania’s government here.
 

Prevent Lyme: Check for Ticks
With May designated as Lyme Disease Awareness Month in Pennsylvania, individuals who spend time outdoors should check themselves for ticks and be aware of the symptoms of Lyme disease and other tick-related ailments.

The first line of defense against Lyme is to take precautions in the outdoors by using insect repellent with DEET, wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants, checking for – and promptly and properly removing – any ticks, and showering shortly after exposure.

If bitten, an individual should monitor the area for the next month. Symptoms of Lyme disease include fever, fatigue, headache, muscle aches, joint pain, a bull’s eye rash may appear, and other symptoms that can be mistaken for viral infections, such as influenza or infectious mononucleosis.

Pennsylvania has led the nation in confirmed cases of Lyme disease for three straight years.

Last year, a $500,000 grant was provided to East Stroudsburg University (ESU) to allow all Pennsylvania residents to have ticks (found on them or a family member) tested for free by the university. The Tick Lab is located within the Dr. Jane Huffman Wildlife Genetics Institute at ESU. Click here to access the Tick Lab website with all the details.

For tips about how to protect yourself from Lyme disease, click here.
 

Weekly Update Via Facebook
Most weeks, I provide a Facebook Live update about what is happening in the 46th Legislative District.

To watch my Facebook Live, please visit Facebook.com/RepOrtitay and like the page.
 
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Office Locations                                                                                                                                                                      
300 Old Pond Road, Suite 205A, Bridgeville, PA 15017 | Phone: (412) 221-5110
Room 143-A, East Wing, PO Box 202046, Harrisburg PA 17120-2046 | (717) 787-1281
Email: jortitay@pahousegop.com
 
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