Politics

Senator Vogel Continues Push for Telemedicine Initiatives in Pennsylvania

Technology can help overcome the barriers to quality patient care created by distance and reduce the costs of those services, according to Senator Elder Vogel (R-Beaver), the author of legislation aimed at promoting telemedicine in Pennsylvania. Senate Bill 780 specifically defines telemedicine as “the delivery of health care services provided through telecommunications technology to a patient by a healthcare practitioner who is at a different location.” It also establishes guidelines regarding who can provide telemedicine services, and provides clarity regarding insurance company reimbursement for those services. “Telemedicine is transforming healthcare and it is something our state should embrace and encourage,” Senator…


Public Community Event Tonight Regarding HIRA

The Christian Chamber Commerce of Western Pennsylvania will be holding an open forum tonight to discuss the purchase of the old Youth Development Center in New Castle. The purchase of the former Youth Development Center has many community members, including government officials State Representative Bernstine, State Representative Sainato and Senator Vogel, concerned about the potential owners. Hira Educational Services is a Muslim-based company who claims to aid in Muslim schooling but after reviewing the companies tax records and finance history, local government officials question the companies financial reliability and have asked Governor Tom Wolf to reconsider the sale. The event…


New Castle Approved for Medical Marijuana Growing Facility

Since Pennsylvania approved legislation permitting the sale of medical marijuana, a former factory located in New Castle has been chosen as one of the first 12 medical marijuana grower/processors in Pennsylvania. The 30,000 square-foot former factory located at 911 Industrial Street in New Castle is expected to be operational within six months, and is anticipated to relieve some of the financial distress in the local community and create 100-150 “good-paying” jobs once the operation reaches full potential, the New Castle News site reports. Keith Morgan and Richard Genderson of Holistic Farms located in Haverford, Pennsylvania, are the visionaries behind the…


Summer Paving Contract Approved

Ellwood City council members unanimously voted yesterday to approve the 2017 summer paving contract with Wampum-based Youngblood Paving. Over a hundred-thousand less than last years paving project, the $239,778.86 contract is expected to cover the expenses to pave 17 blocks of streets, including the entire length of Pittsburgh Circle. 11 Blocks of Pittsburgh Circle, Glen Avenue for one block from Keystone Way to Pittsburgh Circle, three blocks of First Avenue from North Street to Gregg Street, and two blocks of Gregg Street from Wampum Avenue to First Avenue are to be repaved. Under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act the…


Senator Vogel to Host Veterans’ Specialist at New Castle District Office

Senator Vogel announced today that he will host a veterans’ specialist in his New Castle District Office to assist constituents with various issues related to their military service. Stephanie Bengoa of the American Legion Veterans Assistance Program will be available on Wednesday, June 21 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Senator Vogel’s New Castle Office (1905 W State St New Castle). No appointment is necessary. Ms. Bengoa can assist veterans and their families understand the benefits they have earned, enroll in the V.A. health care system, assist with the appeals process, and much more. Please bring any documentation and…


Residents Cautioned about Non-Official Third-Party Bill Pay Site

While many Borough of Ellwood City residents should soon be receiving their May utility bills, they are urged to be aware that a third-party website is appearing in search results for “Ellwood City online bill pay”. When any variation of “Ellwood City online bill pay” is typed into a search engine, a clickable link comes up just a few links below the actual Ellwood City Borough online bill pay website, which is currently still suspended for updates. The third party bill pay site URL is www.doxo.com/info/borough-ellwood-city-pa.  While doxo.com is a legitimate third-party bill payment service, similar to online bill payment…


Borough Offices Closed in Observance of Flag Day

Flag Day is an annual event that commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States, which happened on June 14, 1777, by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. Though Flag Day is observed nationwide, it is not a federal holiday. Pennsylvania is the only state to establish June 14 as a state holiday for Flag Day. Borough Offices will be closed today, June 14th in observance of Flag Day. The federal buildings, including the post office, should remain open as normal.  


Bernstine, Solomon Bill Would Prepare PA Students to Enter Workforce

HARRISBURG – In a bipartisan effort to prepare Pennsylvania’s youth for the 21st century workforce, state Reps. Aaron Bernstine (R-Beaver/Butler/Lawrence) and Jared Solomon (D-Philadelphia) introduced legislation which would allow high school students to obtain real-world work experience while still in school. House Bill 1522 would establish a pilot grant program which would encourage schools and local businesses to collaborate to provide work-based learning opportunities for high school students. “As we work to prepare students for the 21st century workforce, this legislation would allow job creators to help transform our education system. When I came to Harrisburg, I wanted to develop…


Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Deadline Extended to End of Year

The Property Tax/Rent Rebate program deadline for older adults and residents with disabilities to apply for rebates of rent and property taxes paid in 2016 has been extended to December 31, 2017, according to Senator Elder Vogel Jr. The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older; widows and widowers age 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters, and half of Social Security income is excluded. Forms and other information are available online at www.revenue.pa.gov or by calling, toll-free, (888) 222-9190….


Bernstine Backs Pension Reform to Better Protect Taxpayers

HARRISBURG – Rep. Aaron Bernstine (R-Beaver/Butler/Lawrence) issued the following statement after the House of Representatives’ bipartisan vote to reform Pennsylvania’s two public pension systems, which have a combined unfunded liability of more than $62.7 billion: “While this legislation won’t make all our pension problems disappear, it represents a meaningful step that will reduce our massive unfunded liability by more than $5 billion. Most importantly, it shifts financial risk away from our hard-working taxpayers.  Every dollar we add to our pension debt threatens the quality of our schools and the paychecks of our taxpayers, and we need to stop adding to…