Senator Tom Killion E-Newsletter

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Killion Report - AeroAggregates

Spotlight on AeroAggrates

I recently visited AeroAggrates in Eddystone.  This cutting-edge company converts the equivalent of tens of millions of recycled glass bottles every year into lightweight construction materials.  AeroAggrates helps protect our environment while providing tremendous construction products.


Top Rating by Leading Environmental Groups

Last week, I was honored to be recognized for my work on environmental issues.  I received a 100% legislative scorecard rating by Pennsylvania’s leading environmental organizations.

This rating is based on a perfect environmental voting record during the current 2017-2018 legislative session.  The groups that issued this rating include the Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania, Sierra Club of Pennsylvania, Clean Water Action of Pennsylvania and PennEnvironment.

You can view the environmental scorecard ratings of state legislators here: https://www.conservationpa.org/scorecard


 

On August 14th, I toured Aston Township with Deputy Secretary Rick Vilello of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development.  He was given an overview of the wonderful things happening in the community.  Aston recently received a $1 million state grant to update and expand the Aston Township Fire Department’s Green Ridge Fire House.


Summer Environmental Event A Success

 

On August 11th, Representative Chris Quinn and I hosted our 100% Renewable Energy Expo at Penn State’s Brandywine Campus.  PennEnvironment was a partner for this event, which included a forum on renewable energy efforts in our state.

Attendees were able to discuss clean energy solutions for their homes and communities with expo vendors.  The forum portion of the event was conducted by PennEnvironment and highlighted legislation that Representative Quinn and I are co-sponsoring to move Pennsylvania to 100% renewable energy by the year 2050 (Senate Bill 1140 and House Bill 2132).

Below are a few photos from this successful event.  Protecting our environment and making 100% renewable energy a reality will continue to be top priorities for me in the Senate.


Innovative New Scam Alert System for PA

Scammers take advantage of countless vulnerable Pennsylvanians every year.  This is especially true for older adults, who are a prime target of scammers.

This month, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro unveiled an innovative new program to protect Pennsylvanians from scammers.  State residents may now easily sign up for text alerts notifying them of new scams and for tips about how to avoid becoming a victim of scammers.

You are able to sign up for the Attorney General’s new scam alert system and learn more about the program here:  https://www.attorneygeneral.gov/consumer-alerts/


Protecting Patients – How to File a Complaint

PA healthcare facilities are licensed and regulated to ensure the safe delivery of services, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health. 

An individual receiving inadequate services through an inpatient healthcare facility, such as a hospital or a nursing home, or an outpatient healthcare facility, like an ambulatory surgical facility, home care agency, or an outpatient physical/speech/occupational therapy clinic, may file a confidential complaint. 

Healthcare facility complaints may be filed by calling the PA Department of Health at 1-800-254-5164 or by completing this online form: http://apps.health.pa.gov/dohforms/FacilityComplaint.aspx

Personal Care Home problems should be reported to 1-877-401-8835. 

Complaints about a medical professional, including doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals licensed by the PA Department of State should be submitted through the appropriate online form to initiate an investigation.  This can be done here:   https://www.pals.pa.gov/#/page/default


Section of Lenni Road to be Closed

Residents and commuters in the Middletown Township and Chester Heights area should be aware that part of Lenni Road will be closed from August 27th until mid-November.  This closure is due to SEPTA work on the Elwyn-to-Wawa Service Restoration project.

More information about this road closure and its location can be found here: http://septa.org/rebuilding/pdf/lenni-detour-handout-8.13.18.pdf


SEPTA Senior Update

I encourage older adults in the area to visit my district offices if they need a SEPTA Key Senior ID Card.  This has been one of the most requested services offered in my offices.  With this in mind, I wanted to pass along the following information we recently received from SEPTA:

“SEPTA reminds seniors that the PA Senior Citizen Transit ID Cards (yellow and blue paper cards) are being phased out.  Effective September 1st, seniors will need a SEPTA Key Senior ID Card or a valid Pennsylvania Driver’s License or Non-Driver Photo ID with a magnetic strip on the back (issued prior to July 2017) to receive the Senior fare discount.

“The phase out of the paper cards coincides with the start of an additional benefit for Seniors.  Starting September 1st, the $1.00 fee for Regional Rail rides for travel within Pennsylvania will be eliminated. Discounted half-fares will remain in place for seniors traveling to-and-from New Jersey and Delaware. SEPTA’s Senior Free Ride Program for travel on Transit is funded by the Pennsylvania Lottery.

“Most seniors who regularly ride SEPTA have already made the switch to SEPTA Key – with more than 150,000 Senior Key Photo IDs already issued.  To assist Seniors in applying for their cards prior to September 1st, SEPTA is extending hours at our Headquarters Building (Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM) and  Suburban Station’s Accessible Travel Center (M-F; 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM) where same-day cards are issued.

Seniors who have not yet signed up to get their new SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID Card can also do so at the offices of many local elected officials, including state senators and representatives and Philadelphia City Council members. Registration is also available at the Transportation Management Associations (TMA) of Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties. Please allow four weeks for delivery of the card.

“To receive a SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID Card, applicants must fill out an application and show one of the following forms of identification:

  • Pennsylvania Driver/Non-Driver ID
  • Birth Certificate or Baptismal Certificate
  • Yellow PACE Card (Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract for the elderly)
  • Statement of Age Verification from the U.S. Social Security Administration
  • Armed Forces Discharge/Separation Papers
  • Resident Alien Card or Passport/Naturalization Papers”

Strong Start to PA’s New Fiscal Year

Pennsylvania’s 2018-2019 fiscal year that started July 1st is off to a strong start.  This is due in part to robust economic activity around the Commonwealth.

The total General Fund revenue in Pennsylvania for July 2018 was $2.24 billion.  Revenue collections were $152.9 million more than July 2017, which is a 7.3% increase over last year.  Most important, the strong year-over-year increase resulted mainly from increased tax revenue collections, which grew by 7% over July 2017.

A healthy revenue projection for the new fiscal year was one of the primary reasons the General Assembly was able to balance the state’s 2018-2019 budget without a tax increase.

Here is a comparison to date of Fiscal Year 2018-19 vs. Fiscal Year 2017-18:

  • Total General Fund revenues were $152.9 million, or 7.3%, higher than last year at this time.
  • General Fund tax revenue was $143.9 million, or 7%, higher than last year.
  • Corporate net income tax collections were $15.2 million, or 25.6%, higher than July 2017 collections.
  • Sales and use tax (SUT) collections were $98.7 million, or 10.8%, higher than FY 2017-18 as of July.
  • General (i.e. non-motor) SUT collections were 9.7% higher than last year.
  • SUT collections on motor vehicle sales were 18.3% higher than July 2017.
  • Personal income tax (PIT) collections exceeded last year’s collections by $31.2 million, or 3.8%.
  • PIT collections from withholding were 2.4% higher than July 2017 collections.
  • Non-withheld PIT collections (i.e. estimated and annual payments) were 24.9% higher than last year, although July is not a large non-withheld PIT collection month.
  • Realty transfer tax (RTT) collections of $32.7 million were $7.7 million, or 19%, less than last year.
  • $25 million was transferred in July 2018 to the Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund pursuant to Act 58 of 2015.
  • $17.4 million was transferred in July 2017 to the Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund pursuant to Act 58 of 2015.
  • Absent this additional transfer amount in July 2018, gross RTT revenues were essentially flat compared to last year.
  • Inheritance tax collections of $85.1 million were ahead of last year by 2.5%.
  • Cigarette tax collections of $65.3 million were $14.2 million, or 17.8%, less than July 2017. Cigarette tax collections continued a multi-year trend of lagging prior years’ collections.
  • Non-tax revenues of $31.2 million were $9 million more than last year.
  • Motor License Fund revenues of $231.6 million were $17.1 million, or 6.9%, lower than July 2017 collections.

Assistance for Veterans Available

My partnership with the Pennsylvania American Legion to assist veterans at my Brookhaven office, located at 4110 Edgmont Avenue is continuing this month.  A representative from this organization will be at my office on Wednesday, September 26th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

I would like to encourage veterans and their families who have questions about benefits and programs to schedule an appointment for these assistance hours.  Appointments can be made by contacting the office at (610) 447 – 3163.  This service will be offered the fourth Wednesday of each month.

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How I Can Help

My offices provide many services to families in our area. Here are some of the ways we can help.

  • Free notary service
  • Pennsylvania birth certificates
  • SEPTA Key Senior Photo IDs
  • PennDOT assistance with driver’s licenses and forms
  • Information on financial assistance for higher education
  • Assistance with preparation of Property Tax/Rent Rebate applications
  • Citations from the Pennsylvania Senate for notable local accomplishments and family milestones
  • Assistance with PA insurance programs: Medical Assistance and CHIP
  • Fishing and hunting information
  • Pennsylvania personal income tax forms
  • Pennsylvania road maps
  • Requests for copies of legislation, bills and regulations
  • Requests for literature for students and senior citizens
  • Tours of the State Capitol for individuals or groups
  • Unemployment compensation issues
  • Assistance with state agency related issues

How to Contact Me

Please visit my website at www.SenatorKillion.com.

I have staffed two offices in the district to provide you with top-notch constituent service and provide answers to legislative inquiries. Both offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Locations are noted below.

If you are having any problems with state agencies or need help with an issue relating to government, my staff and I will be happy to assist you.

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