I hope you had an enjoyable holiday season and are ready for 2015. In preparation for the new legislative session, my team and I are reintroducing many of the bills we worked on during the 2013-’14 session. Some highlights:
- Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (SLAPP) – Protecting community organizations from the filing of damaging and frivolous law suits.
- Hate Crimes – Along with Sen. Anthony H. Williams (D-Phila.), I’ll be the prime co-sponsor of a bill to expand the commonwealth’s hate crime protections to include lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens.
- Campaign Finance Reform – Legislation to limit the political contributions of contractors who do work for the commonwealth.
- Direct Shipment of Wine – Allow your favorite wines to be shipped to your home.
- Increased Illegal Gun Penalties – Bigger sentences for illegally carrying a firearm in Philadelphia, making it a third degree felony that requires a mandatory minimum sentence of at least two years.
If you would like more information about these proposals or any other bills, visit www.legis.state.pa.us.
Also in my First District Connection of 2015, I’d like to tell you about:
- Christmas tree recycling;
- Free money from LIHEAP;
- A natural gas main replacement project in Center City; and
- Saving for college.
Please don’t hesitate to call my district office at 215-952-3121, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit 1802 S. Broad St., Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. if you or your neighbors ever need anything.
Sen. Larry Farnese
Recycle Your Christmas Tree
The City of Philadelphia is just about to conclude its annual Christmas tree recycling program. If you want to recycle your tree, drop it off Jan. 17 between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. at any of the city’s 23 recycling locations.
Apply for LIHEAP
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is still accepting applications, but there is a limited amount of money available so make sure you apply right away. Here are this year’s eligibility requirements:
For each additional person in the home add $6,090.
Call us at 215-952-3121 for more information or if you need help filling out your application. You can also call Pennsylvania’s LIHEAP hotline at 866-857-7095 (individuals with hearing impairments can call the TDD number at 1-800-451-5886).
PGW Main Replacement
PGW has started to replace the natural gas mains at the intersection of 19th and Cherry Streets. The project is part of their ongoing work to improve the safety and capacity of its delivery system. Work should be completed by March, so if you have to drive through the construction zone, plan accordingly for possible delays and be cautious of the workers.
Planning for College and its Cost
The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) is reminding college-bound high school seniors and their families to submit their Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. The FAFSA determines a student’s eligibility for financial assistance and is available online at www.fafsa.gov.
For more information about the higher education aid process, helpful FAFSA informational sessions, financial aid deadline reminders and general information about how you can plan for college please visit PHEAA.org.
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