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In this email update:
Frackville Hometown Heroes dedication ceremony
This past Memorial Day weekend, I attended several ceremonies to honor our courageous men and women who selflessly sacrificed their lives for our freedoms and liberties. These men and women, without a doubt, truly embody the definition of patriotism.
On Saturday morning, I joined hundreds of local residents for the Frackville Hometown Heroes dedication ceremony where 180 banners were presented in honor of our local veterans who gallantly served our country and sacrificed their lives.
We sat across the street from the banner honoring a longtime friend of mine, the late Dr. Max Kaplan, a World War II veteran. As we paid our respects to our brave men and women in the military who died to protect our democratic values and principles, a key quote from the British prime minister of the World War II era, Winston Churchill came to mind: “Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government—except for all those other forms that have been tried.”
Coaldale Memorial Day services
In my comments, I referred to a letter I recently found from Congressman Ivor Fenton to my grandmother Argall in 1943, when she was trying to recruit a garment factory to come to the small town of Middleport so that the local women could support the war effort:
While some of you have heard me explain in the past that I don’t come from a political family and my parents often joked that perhaps they brought the wrong baby home from the hospital, my grandmother, Helene Howells Argall, was very involved in the civic life of her small town.
During my comments, I also noted my mother’s most vivid World War II memory (she was 10 when the war ended). My mother recalled that when her neighbors received the news that their son had been killed in action, the entire neighborhood could hear them crying. While Mom could not remember much from that era, she remembered that sad day on N. Front St. in St. Clair for many decades.
A special thank you to Coaldale’s veterans groups for their commitment to improving our veterans’ memorials to honor these patriots for their unwavering service to our nation.
Read more about the services from the Times News here.
The bipartisan fight against blight in our communities
On Tuesday morning, I joined Representative Neal Goodman, Minersville Borough Manager Bob Mahalchick, Minersville Borough Council Member Walter Miscavage, and Schuylkill County Commissioners Gary Hess and George Halcovage for a press conference celebrating the first building to be torn down as part of the $1.4 million in funding received for the Schuylkill County demolition program.
The former American Legion building in Minersville will be turned into a community park honoring Pennsylvania’s military veterans. The Minersville community should be very proud to note that Schuylkill County’s renewed revitalization effort has started right here, at the gateway to their community.
The new funding will cover approximately 50 qualified demolition projects throughout Schuylkill County over the next few years.
Of course, these blight remediation efforts would not have been made possible without the bipartisan cooperation, team work and assistance from several state and local government officials and their partners.
Commissioner Hess commended this bipartisan work saying, “This is a resurgence in Schuylkill County – a resurgence, from the local, county and state level all working together to make our communities bright and beautiful again.”
Read more about this project from the Republican Herald here.
“Network of Care” website for veterans
On Wednesday, Representatives Goodman, Tobash and I held an event at the Pottsville Career Link to share a comprehensive website highlighting all of the benefits available to veterans.
The “Network of Care” is an innovative database that helps service members returning home from duty to navigate through the many programs and services that are offered by numerous grassroots organizations and federal, local and state governmental agencies and departments.
The Network of Care database was created in conjunction with the National Association of Counties, and includes information about job opportunities, crisis support services and news and magazine articles geared towards veterans and their families.
Learn more about the event here.
Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission grants awarded
Berks and Schuylkill Counties were recently awarded with cultural and historical support grants by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC).
Since its establishment, the PHMC has been committed to promoting economic development in Pennsylvania by attracting residents and tourists to the many historical sites and museums that are located throughout our state.
The grant funding provided will allow the state’s museums and historical societies to continue to carry out their core functions and duties of providing citizens with historical knowledge and educational opportunities.
The following grants were received in Berks and Schuylkill Counties:
3rd Annual Service to Youth & Community Breakfast
On Thursday morning, I attended the Boy Scouts of America Hawk Mountain Council’s 3rd Annual Service to Youth & Community Breakfast at the Hawk Mountain Scout Reservation.
Each year, this breakfast provides individuals and businesses with the opportunity to learn more about Scouting programs in Berks, Schuylkill and Carbon Counties. The event also recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to their communities.
As a volunteer Scout leader, I have witnessed first-hand the positive impact that this organization has made in helping our youth not only to develop the necessary life skills and values of hard work, comradery and service, but also in helping these young individuals to become active, productive members of their communities for many years to come.
Congratulations to this year’s award recipients: the Distinguished Citizen honoree: Jim Miller of Auburn, the President of Miller Brothers Construction; and the Service to Youth & Community honorees: Jerry Beaver of Pitman and David Fry of Mahanoy City.
Concealed Carry Seminar
On Wednesday June 7, Representative Goodman and I will be sponsoring a concealed carry seminar at Minersville Area High School.
Schuylkill County Sheriff Joseph Groody and Berks County Sheriff Eric Weaknecht will be speaking with residents about Pennsylvania’s concealed carry laws and the importance of safe gun practices.
We hope to see you there!
Pennsylvania State Council of Farm Organizations Seminar
On Thursday, I attended a community service seminar regarding compliance requirements in the federal Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that was presented by the Pennsylvania State Council of Farm Organizations (PSCFO) and the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.
During this seminar, farmers and members of the agriculture community learned about risk management in the areas of food safety and crop insurance. They were also given advice regarding important questions they should ask insurance agents in order to make sure their specific needs are met.
A special thank you to the PSCFO and the Department of Agriculture for putting this event together, as well as the Lewistown Grange for hosting this event!
Pennsylvania Career Guide
Last month, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry announced the release of the 25th edition of the Pennsylvania Career Guide.
The Pennsylvania Career Guide is a resource for both students and individuals who are looking to either enter the workforce or continue their education. The Pennsylvania Career Guide provides comprehensive information about various services and opportunities in Pennsylvania, an assessment individuals can take to gauge their interest in a potential career field, data on employment and wages, as well as tools to help students with their post-graduation plans.
For an online copy of the Pennsylvania Career Guide, click here.
To receive a printed copy, please contact the Center for Workforce Information & Analysis (CWIA) at firstname.lastname@example.org or by dialing 1-877-493-3282.
The Senate is scheduled to convene on Monday, June 5 at 11 a.m. You can watch session live and view the voting calendar on my website.