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Senator Argall

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In this email update:

  • Finding savings for Pennsylvania’s taxpayers
  • Which governor has allowed the most bills to become law without a signature?
  • Highlighting the successes of the Schuylkill County Land Bank in 2017
  • Recognizing Martha Bertolet, Hamburg Borough Council President
  • Produce grower certification training course in Berks County
  • Improving our communities
  • Scholarships available for students pursuing a career in agriculture
  • Scenic 2018 calendars available for purchase

Finding savings for Pennsylvania’s taxpayers

Eliminating wasteful government spending, cutting out fraud and abuse within our state’s agencies and protecting taxpayer dollars is a critical goal.

Senator Scott Wagner (R-York) recently introduced legislation which would require requested reports by an elected official to the Office of Inspector General be made public, since taxpayer dollars are used to conduct these investigations.

As a co-sponsor of this important legislation, this initiative will help us to improve state government and better serve Pennsylvania’s residents.

Read more about the bill here.


Which governor has allowed the most bills to become law without a signature?

Article IV, Section 15 of the Pennsylvania Constitution states that if a bill is not signed or vetoed within 10 days by the governor, it shall automatically become law. Since 1975, there have been 35 instances when a governor allowed a bill to automatically become law after 10 days.

Governor Wolf is responsible for 21 laws without his signature, accounting for 60 percent of all laws without a signature since 1975.

Below are the total number of bills that became law without a signature of the governor, by year and administration:


Highlighting the successes of the Schuylkill County Land Bank in 2017

The Schuylkill County Land Bank was created in December 2015 with the purpose of improving our communities through the rehabilitation and revitalization of properties throughout Schuylkill County.

Since its establishment, it has witnessed considerable success during its first two years of operation. Some of the Lank Bank’s accomplishments this past year included:

  • The acquisition and rehabilitation of a house in Minersville. The house was donated to the land bank by Wells Fargo and was recently sold to a first- time buyer, as pictured below:
  • The approval of $200,000 by the PA Department of Community and Economic Development for the demolition of ten properties in Mahanoy City, Minersville, and Shenandoah. The properties will be demolished by June 2018.
  • The approval of $175,000 in funding through the PA Housing Finance Agency to rehabilitate tax delinquent houses in Ashland and Delano Township that have been acquired by the Land Bank at the judicial sale stage. Bids for rehabilitation work will be received by the end of the first quarter of 2018. The properties will be sold to first-time home buyers.
  • The submission of an application on behalf of Frackville Borough to complete a master plan for the first block of North Lehigh Avenue that will guide the Borough and the Land Bank in redeveloping properties along this street.

The positive, ongoing transformation of many of our local communities would be seen as a marvel to my parents’ ancestors, local coal miners, teachers, farmers, and factory workers who came to this region in search of a new life. We see it here every day: Because of grassroots teamwork, “left behind” communities here are much improved, but no one denies that much work remains undone.

Here’s to a successful 2018!


Recognizing Martha Bertolet, Hamburg Borough Council President

On December 26, Representative Jerry Knowles and I had the opportunity to recognize Martha Bertolet on her retirement from the Hamburg Borough Council after 25 years of dedicated service.

Along with her service to the Hamburg Borough Council, Martha has been an active member of her community.

Thank you again Martha for your service to the Hamburg community!


Produce grower certification training course in Berks County

On Thursday, January 18, Penn State Extension will be hosting a produce grower certification training course in Leesport, Berks County.

The purpose of the course is to provide Pennsylvania’s produce growers with information and training on compliance requirements as laid out in the federal Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

During this training, produce growers will learn about a number of important topics such as produce safety, worker health and hygiene, postharvest handling and sanitation, and how to create a farm food safety plan.

For more information about the training program, please click here.


Improving our communities

As we enter a new year, what better way to start it off right than to help our fellow citizens and work to improve our communities?

Pictured: Blue Mountain Academy’s ASSIST Team. These young individuals were featured in my September e-newsletter for their hard work and commitment to helping their fellow citizens through initiatives such as food/supply drives for the needy and visiting local residents in nursing homes.

I am encouraging residents in the 29th Senate district in Berks and Schuylkill Counties to nominate their friends and neighbors who serve their communities and help their fellow citizens each and every day.

When submitting your nominations, please provide the following information:

  • Your full contact information – phone, address, email address.
  • Your nominee’s contact information – phone, address, email address. Nominee must reside in the 29th Senate district in Berks and Schuylkill Counties.
  • A detailed explanation of what your nominee has done for their community.

Periodically in my e-newsletter, I will feature an individual who has been nominated for their public service.

Please email your submissions to: dargall@pasen.gov or on my website here.

I look forward to reading about these good Samaritans!


Scholarships available for students pursuing a career in agriculture

The Farm Credit Foundation for Agricultural Advancement will be providing ten scholarships to local students who are planning to pursue a career in agriculture.

Each scholarship is worth $10,000 and all high school seniors or current college students who reside in the MidAtlantic Farm Credit’s territory are encouraged to apply.

The application deadline is Friday, January 12, 2018.

For more information about the scholarship program and how to apply, please click here.


Scenic 2018 calendars available for purchase

Order your 2018 Pennsylvania calendars now and be ready to flip the page on 2017.

Find striking wildlife photos along with helpful hints for hunting and the outdoors in the 2018 Pennsylvania Wildlife Calendar. Proceeds of all products sold through the Outdoor Shop support the preservation, conservation, and management of Pennsylvania’s wildlife resources and habitats.

Enjoy vintage artwork from the PA Angler & Boater Magazine featured throughout the PF&BC’s 2018 collector calendar. Discover lovely outdoor scenery in photographs from across PA captured in the 2018 State Parks Calendar. Each purchase raises dollars for conservation and recreation.

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Toll Free: 1-877-327-4255

Harrisburg Office
Senate Box 203029
171 Main Capitol
Harrisburg, PA 17120-3029
717-787-2637
717-783-8657 FAX

Email: dargall@pasen.gov

District Offices
 

One West Centre Street
P.O. Box 150
Mahanoy City, PA 17948
570-773-0891
570-773-1675 FAX

61 North Third Street
Hamburg, PA 19526-1501
610-562-3411
610-562-6895 FAX
(Shared with Representative
Jerry Knowles)

100 North Centre Street
Pottsville, PA 17901
570-621-3400
570-622-6629 FAX
(Shared with Representative Mike Tobash)

Spring Township
2850 Windmill Road
Spring Township, PA 19608
1-877-327-4255

237 West Broad Street
Tamaqua, PA 18252
570-668-1240
570-952-3374 FAX
(Shared with Representative
Jerry Knowles)

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