No More Robo Calls on Holidays?
Legislation that responds to widespread consumer complaints about unwanted telemarketing and robo-calls passed the House this week.
House Bill 105 would improve the state’s telemarketing law by making registrations on the do-not-call list permanent, rather than re-registering after five years; prohibiting the calls on legal holidays; requiring telemarketers using a robo-call system to provide an opt-out process within the first few seconds of each call; and requiring robo-calls left on a voicemail to include a toll-free call back number that would directly connect a person to an opt-out process.
These commonsense reforms would make life easier for Pennsylvanians who do not want to receive so many telemarketing solicitations or robo-calls. Registration on the list will not prevent all calls; individuals with an existing relationship with a company, along with charitable and political calls, are exempt.
The bill now goes to the Senate for review.
Around Our Community
It was my pleasure to wish Frances Gavigan a happy 100th birthday on Tuesday, May 16.
The Palace of Indian, an authentic Indian Cuisine in Twin Stacks, Dallas, celebrated its grand opening this week. Congratulations!
It was my honor to attend an event celebrating the 90th Anniversary of Dallas Kiwanis. Several long-serving members were recognized.
Pictured with me (from left) are Bernard Banks, 50-year member; Secretary James Snyder; President Robert Albee; Robert Dolbear, 65-year member; Charles Kishbaugh, 30-year member; Treasurer Beverly Atherholt; and Sen. Lisa Baker.
Make Sure Your Contractor is Registered
To help ensure that consumers are better protected against fraudulent contractors, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed a law in 2008 to require all who perform at least $5,000 worth of home improvements per year register with the attorney general’s office.
The law helps consumers by establishing minimum insurance requirements for contractors; requiring contractors to provide their registration number in their ads and contracts; establishing required contract terms for home improvement contracts; prohibiting unfair business practices; and creating a criminal penalty for home improvement fraud.
Consumers in Pennsylvania are able to verify registration with the attorney general’s office by visiting the Registered Contractors page at http://hicsearch.attorneygeneral.gov/ or by calling 1-888-520-6680.
For more information, click here.
Buckle Up, Ensure Kids’ Safety
With the start of the summer travel season, PennDOT and the Pennsylvania State Police, along with local law enforcement, want to ensure that drivers and their motorists are safe and will conduct their “Click it or Ticket” seat belt enforcement May 22 through June 4. The targeted effort will be especially prevalent at the state’s borders.
Additionally, to help ensure the safety of infants and children in cars, troopers certified as child passenger safety technicians will offer no-cost car seat fittings and inspections at various locations throughout the state. Click here for that list.
According to PennDOT data, unrestrained fatalities decreased from 413 to 408 in 2016. The statewide number of crashes in which people were not wearing seat belts increased to 14,992, compared to 13,534 in 2015.
Pennsylvania’s primary seatbelt law requires drivers and passengers under age 18 to buckle up when riding anywhere in a vehicle. After the age of 18, drivers and passengers must wear a seat belt when behind the wheel or in the front passenger seat. As of August, 2016, Pennsylvania law mandates that children under age 2 be secured in a rear-facing car seat. Children under age 4 must be restrained in an approved child safety seat. A booster seat is required for children until age 8.
Satellite and Outreach Hours Offered Next Week
A member of my staff will be available at the following location next week to provide assistance with Property Tax/Rent Rebate forms, PennDOT paperwork, state-related issues and more.
• Tuesday, May 23, at the Laceyville Borough Building, located at 342 Church St., Laceyville, from 3-5 p.m.
A representative from the University of Scranton Small Business Development Center will be at the Tunkhannock district office also on Tuesday, May 23, from 10 a.m. to noon. The University of Scranton Small Business Development Center provides educational programs and no-cost, confidential consulting services to entrepreneurs looking to start or grow a small business.
Fish for Free on Sunday
On Sunday, May 28, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) will host a Fish for Free day to allow anyone (resident or non-resident) to legally fish on all Pennsylvania waterways. No license is required, but all other fishing regulations will still apply.
This is the first of two dates set by the PFBC to enhance fishing opportunities. The next day is Independence Day, Tuesday, July 4.
This is a great way to expose the next generation of anglers to the outdoors. Find more information here.
Wanted: Veterans to Serve as Mentors on Veterans Court
The Wyoming/Sullivan County Veterans Court is seeking honorably discharged veterans to serve as volunteer mentors to the veterans participating in their veterans court program. The treatment court will provide all training and education for the volunteers. For more information, contact Adriana Serpico at 570-996-2274.