Thanks For Attending My Senior Expo
A great time was had by all at our Senior Expo, held on Friday at Tunkhannock Area High School. Thank you to our presenters and to all those who attended.
Thank you to Wyoming County District Attorney Jeff Mitchell and Detective David Ide for bringing a prescription drug drop-box to our expo. It is a much-appreciated service.
Alex McCarthy, an intern at my office, assisted with the event.
Tax Amnesty Nets State $114 Million
Pennsylvania’s latest Tax Amnesty Program brought in $114.5 million, surpassing the $100 million net revenue previously estimated.
The Tax Amnesty Program waived all penalties and half of the interest for eligible individuals or businesses that applied to the program and paid delinquent state taxes between April 21 and June 19, 2017. Taxpayers who were eligible but didn’t participate in the program will now be assessed a 5 percent penalty.
Tax amnesty is not a forgiveness of debt but a reduction in fines to encourage payment. Anyone who took advantage of this program will not be eligible to do so again should the Commonwealth enact a subsequent amnesty program.
The proceeds generated will apply toward the 2016-17 fiscal year, which ended June 30.
Turn Around, Don’t Drown
With summer weather leading to increased storms, heavy rains and flash flooding, residents are reminded of a 2012 law that encourages people to turn around, don’t drown.
Under the law, motorists who ignore temporary police barricades and drive through flooded areas during and after storms could face fines.
Specifically, anyone who requires rescue, towing or medical care after ignoring a barricade or warning sign can be fined $250 to $500 and have points assessed to their driving record. They may also be forced to pay restitution for the cost of their rescue.
The law is designed to discourage motorists from driving around road-closed signs and putting themselves, as well as emergency responders, in danger. As little as six inches of moving water can knock a person down and one foot of water can sweep a vehicle away.
More information about flood safety is available here.
DEP Accepting Applications for Small Business Advantage Grants
The Department of Environmental Protection is inviting manufacturers, retailers, service providers, agricultural businesses and other small businesses to apply for a total of $1 million in Small Business Advantage Grants to finance pollution prevention and energy-efficiency projects.
The program operates on a first-come, first-served basis that provides up to 50 percent reimbursement matching grants, up to a maximum of $7,000 to $9,500, depending on the project. Eligible projects must save the small business a minimum of $500 and at least 25 percent annually in energy consumption or pollution-related expenses.
The grant program runs from July 25, 2017, through June 30, 2018, or until funds are exhausted.
For the first time, applications must be submitted online at www.esa.dced.state.pa.us/Login.aspx.
More information is available at this link.
Schedule Your Capitol Tour Early
Beginning Aug. 1, the Capitol tour office will be taking group reservations for the 2017-18 school year. The late spring and early summer seasons are the busiest times for Capitol tours, so make your reservation as early as possible.
You can call the Capitol tour office directly at 1-800-868-7672 or call my office at 717-260-6139. When you call, have your group name, total number of participants and best contact information ready. Individuals may make reservations or join a tour group at the time of their visit.
Tours are available Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday, Sunday and most holidays at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. The Capitol is closed for tours New Year’s Day, Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Weekday tours begin at the top of the hour and every half hour. The tours last between 30 and 45 minutes depending on the size of the group.
For more information, click here.
Support Local Police at National Night Out Events
Tuesday, Aug. 1, is National Night Out, an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships to make our neighborhoods safer, better places to live.
Wilkes-Barre City Crime Watch is sponsoring National Night Out from 1-5 p.m., Sunday, July 30, on Public Square, to enhance the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement.
For more information about the national event, click here. https://natw.org
Outreach and Satellite Hours Offered Next Week
A member of my staff will be available at the following locations:
• Tuesday, Aug. 1, from 10 a.m. to noon at Mehoopany Township Municipal Building, located at 237 Schoolhouse Road, Mehoopany, and then at the Meshoppen Borough Building, located the intersection of Canal Street and Route 267 in Meshoppen from 1-3 p.m.
• Wednesday, Aug. 2, at the Dalton Borough Building, located at 105 West Main St., Dalton, from 10 a.m. to noon.
On Wednesday, Aug. 2, the American Legion will hold office hours at the Tunkhannock district office, located at 133 West Tioga St., Suite 4, in Tunkhannock from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
A claims consultant from the American Legion will provide the assistance. Area veterans may seek assistance and information pertaining to specific benefits and programs. Additional meetings will be held on the first Wednesday of every month.
For more information and to register, visit www.RepBoback.com or call her Tunkhannock district office at 570-836-4777.
Healthy Habits and Wellness Event Set for Aug. 9
I will host a Healthy Habits and Wellness Event, along with Misericordia University, on Wednesday, Aug. 9, at Misericordia’s Insalaco Hall from 3-7 p.m. The event will feature over 25 vendors and will include special informational presentations.
Presentations will cover a range of topics, including Keeping Safe on Facebook and Social Media, Healthy Food Preparation, Yoga and You, Paint and Relax, and more.
PennDOT will be on site to share information about teen driving safety, and the Luzerne County District Attorney’s office will bring a prescription drug drop box for the safe disposal of medication.
This is a free event. For more information, visit www.RepBoback.com or call her offices at (570) 675-6000 or (570) 836-4777.
Price of National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Senior Pass Set to Increase
On Aug. 28, the price of the America the Beautiful – The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior Pass will increase for the first time since 1994. The additional revenue will be used to enhance the visitor experience in parks.
The price will increase from $10 to $80. U.S. citizens or permanent residents 62 years or older are eligible for the Senior Pass. For more information and to purchase your pass before the price increases, visit https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/senior-pass-changes.htm.
Scenes from the Little League State Tournament
It was my pleasure to throw out the first pitch at the Little League State Tournament last weekend in Fleetville.
Pictured with me are Jerry and Allison Decker. Allison sang the Star Spangled Banner at the Little League State Tournament.
Catcher Ethan Stevenson signed a baseball for me.
Pictured with me is Tom Kilmer, the baseball field’s namesake.
Around Our Community
Members of the Luzerne County Association of Realtors visited my office this week.
Thank you to all those who attended our nonprofit, anti-fraud seminar on Tuesday. It was a great success!
It was my pleasure to speak at the press conference announcing Keystone College’s newest expansion project.