Ceremony to Honor Vietnam-Era Veterans
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U.S. Rep. Tom Marino, state Rep. Lynda Schlegel Culver and I toured the Sunbury Generation Power plant in Shamokin Dam on Monday, Feb. 19. The purpose of the tour was to hear directly from business owners about how government at both the federal and state levels can positively support businesses, and to discuss the impact of the recent federal tax changes. We also visited other local businesses in Snyder County.
Vietnam Veterans Invited to Pinning Ceremony on March 28

If you are a veteran of the Vietnam era, I hope you will join Rep. Lynda Schlegel Culver and me, along with the office of Sen. Pat Toomey, at a pinning ceremony to commemorate National Vietnam Veterans Day.

This ceremony will take place on Wednesday, March 28, at 2 p.m. at the Selinsgrove VFW Post 6631, located at 940 Route 522, in Selinsgrove.

Veterans who served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces at any time between Nov. 1, 1955, and May 15, 1975, regardless of station location, will be eligible to receive a lapel pin at this ceremony. Family members are invited to attend the ceremony with veterans.

Advanced RSVP is required before Friday, March 23, by calling 570-966-0052.
Budget Hearings to Conclude Next Week

The final set of budget hearings is coming up next week, with the departments of Education and Human Services, as well as the Pennsylvania State Police, Office of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General, Gaming Control Board and Budget Secretary Randy Albright scheduled to appear before the House Appropriations Committee.

The purpose of the hearings is to dig deep into the governor’s proposed $33 billion budget, assess how various departments and agencies are spending your tax dollars and determine if their funding requests for the next fiscal year are reasonable and responsible. As a member of the committee, I am working hard to identify ways to cut excessive spending and improve efficiencies to help you keep more of your hard-earned money.

The hearings can be viewed live at www.PAHouseGOP.com, with archived videos posted within 24 hours of the hearing. A 2018-19 state budget is due by the end of the fiscal year, June 30.
Online Learners Now Eligible for State Grants

A new law will soon allow college students who take more than half of their classes online to have permanent access to financial aid.

Act 5 of 2018, formerly House Bill 1653, expands a successful pilot program created in 2013 that permitted students who take more than 50 percent of their credits online from a college or university headquartered and located in the Commonwealth to receive state grants through the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA).

During the 2014-15 grant award year, more than 5,900 students received grant awards, totaling $8.52 million because of the pilot program.

The new law will take effect with the 2018-19 academic year. More information about college financial aid is available at www.pheaa.org.
New Law Addresses Accidental Harvest by Hunters

A new law seeks to protect and encourage honest hunters by addressing situations in which hunters may erroneously harvest an animal and turn the animal into the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

Presently, a hunter who harvests a deer or turkey of the wrong sex or accidentally takes two can turn the animals into a wildlife conservation officer and receive a new tag, pay a small fine and suffer no license revocation. Act 3 of 2018, formerly House Bill 359, expands that protection to the other two big game animals, bear and elk.

The new law does not change any of the other penalties hunters face for illegal out-of-season kills, except for the elimination of license revocations in those instances where the hunter self-reports and surrenders the animal.

Restitution for mistakenly killing bear or elk has been set at $100 for each animal killed. Violators who are on a payment plan to repay penalties and who are making on-time payments, may not have their hunting or trapping privileges suspended for failure to pay penalties.
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