Contact Information 
District Office
Carriage House Square
2785 Route 115, Suite 103
Effort, PA 18330
Phone: (570) 620-4341
Fax: (570) 620-4349

Tobyhanna Township Building
105 Government Center Way
Pocono Pines, PA 18350
Phone: (570) 643-7683

Capitol Office

Room 423, Irvis Office Building
PO Box 202176
Harrisburg PA 17120-2176
Phone: (717) 787-7732
Voters to Decide Property Tax Issue
7/21/2017
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Weekly Roundup
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol

Voters to Decide Property Tax Issue

 

This fall, voters will have the opportunity to amend the Pennsylvania Constitution to allow local governments to exclude more of a property’s median assessed value for property tax reductions.

Currently, the state Constitution only permits local governments – counties, municipalities and school districts – to exclude up to 50 percent.

The referendum is made possible through House Bill 1285, which recently passed both chambers of the General Assembly this summer. It is identical to legislation, House Bill 147, which cleared both the House and Senate last session – a requirement to amend the Constitution.

Voters will be able to consider the constitutional amendment on the Nov. 7 ballot. Should the people of Pennsylvania vote in the affirmative on this question, the Constitution will be amended as the governor’s signature is not required for it to become law.

Saving Taxpayer Money on Health Care Costs
As a way to help save taxpayer money by reducing health care expenses, the House approved two measures addressing cost-drivers in the state’s Medical Assistance program.

House Bill 1354 would create the Office of Independent Medical Assistance Director, which would be required to post online the number of Medicaid enrollees, costs and a cost analysis to compare budget funds and forecasted expenses on a monthly basis. The office would also be tasked with improving health outcomes and working toward providing budget predictability. This would help ensure greater efficiency within the Medical Assistance program.

House Bill 1532 would allow the Commonwealth to better identify potential abuse of opioids among Medical Assistance enrollees by giving Medicaid organizations access to information in the state’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. The legislation would help save lives by allowing anyone prescribing or dispensing opioids to better recognize potential abusers and stem the tide of this epidemic.

Both bills are now with the state Senate.

Helping Military Families through Hardship
For more than a decade, the Military Family Relief Assistance Program, which is partially funded through a state income tax check-off, has been helping active duty members of the armed forces and their families meet basic expenses when facing extreme financial hardships.

House Bill 984 would ensure that the check-off is permanent, rather than having to be extended. Currently, the check-off has been extended three times and is set to expire on Jan. 1, 2018.

To qualify for assistance, eligible members must have a direct and immediate financial need as a result of circumstances beyond their control. The amount of a grant is based on documented financial need up to a maximum of $3,500.

More information about the program is available here.

Free Cervical Screenings, Mammograms Available

 

Women who are uninsured or underinsured can receive free cervical cancer screenings and mammograms under the Pennsylvania HealthyWoman Program. The program is funded by the Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The program is open to women ages 40-64, who are Pennsylvania residents and have a gross household income below 250 percent of the federal poverty annual guideline, about $61,500 for a family of four.

If breast or cervical cancer is detected through the HealthyWoman Program, the individual may be eligible for free treatment through the Department of Human Services' Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Program.

For more information, click here or call 1-800-215-7494.

Around Our Community 

 

On Saturday, the West End Park and Open Space Commission hosted a wine tasting event at the Blue Ridge Winery in Saylorsburg. All funds raised will support the construction of the Leash Free Dog Park.
 

 

This week, I met with PennDOT officials and learned how recycled asphalt is being used to improve state roads in Monroe County. This process is both environmentally friendly and cost effective. PennDOT expects to save $339,000 on the Camp Akiba Road and Fairview Avenue projects using the recycled asphalt paving technique.  

 

Over the weekend, the borough of Mount Pocono celebrated its 90th anniversary! I had the chance to see many familiar faces and am pictured here with Borough Council President Karl Davis.

 

This week, Sen. Mario Scavello, Rep. Rosemary Brown and I hosted the annual Monroe County Senior Expo in Swiftwater. This year, over 75 exhibitors representing organizations ranging from county agencies, local nonprofits and other community associations joined us.

Thank you for making to this year’s expo a success. Over 1,000 members of the community came out to learn about services available to them. I hope to see everyone on Sept. 16 at my annual Fall Wellness Festival, which will be held at Northampton Community College in Tannersville. Please call our office at 570-643-7683 if you’re interested in being a vendor there.

Small Games of Chance Seminar Set for Aug. 9
I will offer a Small Games of Chance Seminar on Wednesday, Aug. 9, from 6-8:30 p.m. at the American Legion Post 413 in Pocono Lake. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. The seminar will feature State Police Trooper Todd Merlina, who will provide useful information for nonprofits, sports leagues, churches and more regarding our state’s small games of chance laws.

Registration is required due to limited seating. Register by visiting http://www.reprader.com/chanceseminar2017.aspx or call my Pocono Pines district office at 570-643-7683.

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Office Locations
Capitol: Room 423, Irvis Office Building, P.O. Box 202176, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2176 | Phone: (717) 787-7732
Districts: 2785 Route 115, Suite 103, Carriage House Square, Effort, PA 18330 I Phone: (570) 620-4341
Tobyhanna Township Building, 105 Government Center Way, Pocono Pines, Pa 18350 I Phone: (570) 643-7683
Email: jrader@pahousegop.com
 
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