Jan. 10, 2020 / Weekly Roundup

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The Weekly Roundup
#Listrak\DateStampShort# The latest news from the State Capitol
 
Still Time to Attend the PA Farm Show

No plans this weekend? This Saturday, Jan. 11, marks the end of the 104th Pennsylvania Farm Show in Harrisburg. But there’s still plenty of time to check it out! The show is the largest indoor agricultural exposition under one roof in the nation.

This week, I attended the Farm Show to learn more about Pennsylvania’s top industry and to enjoy the sights and sounds. I also had the opportunity to interview Secretary of Agriculture Russell Redding. Click here to learn more.


Locally, the 124th District is boasting blue-ribbon entries in this year’s Farm Show. Be sure to check out the list of winners on the Farm Show website!


Pictured with me are (above) Mesa and Savannah Brown of Kempton. They competed in the 4-H competition this year. They brought three heifers, two Shorthorns and a Maintainer to the Farm Show. Sierra (below) also competes. These young ladies assist their parents raising a herd of 75, plus about 25 breeding ewes. It was nice talking to them. I will have more pictures from the Farm Show in next week’s email.

 
 
2020 Hemp Program Accepting Applications from Growers, Processors

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s 2020 hemp program is now accepting applications from both commercial growers and processors.

The 2020 application period is open through April 1. This year, both growers and processors of hemp are required to apply. The permitting of processors is new for the 2020 program. Each individual property will require its own permit and application. A permit costs $150.

It is the second year for the program, with farmers planting just over 4,000 acres of hemp across 55 counties in 2019.

Hemp was grown in Pennsylvania and throughout the United States until after World War II but became regulated along with marijuana and its cultivation was prohibited. Unlike marijuana, hemp is also grown for fiber and seed, in addition to floral extracts, and must maintain a much lower concentration of the chemical tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, below the 0.3% legal threshold.

For more information on Pennsylvania’s hemp program, click here. 
 
 
Applications for 2020 Pennsylvania House Scholarship Available

High school seniors interested in receiving financial assistance to help pay for college can now apply for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ Scholarship.

Each year the program awards a four-year scholarship to two students preparing for post-secondary education. It is open to graduating high school seniors who are Pennsylvania residents with plans to attend a Pennsylvania college, university or career school as a full-time student.

To qualify, students must have attained a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average in high school. Other factors taken into consideration for the awards are a student’s commitment to community, leadership qualities, extracurricular activities and financial need.

The scholarship program is administered through the Foundation for Enhancing Communities.  The application is available through the foundation’s web site here.  The application deadline is March 1.

The scholarship is privately funded by individual and corporate donors; no tax or other public funds are used. Scholarships are awarded through an independent panel of judges chosen by the foundation.
 
 
Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement Pre-Enforcement Period Underway

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) announced that the required 60-day pre-enforcement period for the statewide Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement (AWZSE) program has begun and will last until March 4.

Pennsylvania’s AWZSE program uses vehicle-mounted systems to detect and record motorists exceeding posted work zone speed limits using electronic speed timing devices. The goal is to protect the lives of motorists, passengers and highway workers.

During the pre-enforcement period, automated speed enforcement units will be deployed in active work zones, but violations will not be issued. Work zones are selected to maximize the effectiveness of the systems and will be marked with signage in advance of the enforcement area. Additionally, locations are posted on the project website, workZoneCameras.PennDOT.gov.

AWZSE systems are only operational in active work zones where workers are present. Once enforcement begins on March 4, registered owners will receive a warning letter for a first offense, a violation notice and $75 fine for a second offense, and a violation notice and $150 fine for third and subsequent offenses. These violations are civil penalties only; no points will be assessed to driver’s licenses.

In 2018, there were 1,804 work zone crashes in Pennsylvania, resulting in 23 fatalities. Since 1970, PennDOT has lost 89 workers in the line of duty. The PA Turnpike has lost 45 workers since 1945.
 
 
Does Your Home Contain Radon?

An estimated 40% of Pennsylvania homes have higher levels of radon than national safety standards, due to the state’s geology. However, residents can perform a simple test to detect this gas, which is considered the second leading cause of lung cancer.

Radon is an odorless, colorless radioactive gas that occurs naturally from the breakdown of uranium in soil and rocks and enters homes through cracks in the foundation or other openings. High levels of radon tend to be found in basements, but the gas can be found anywhere in the home.

Winter is a good time to test for radon, because doors and windows are generally closed, providing more accurate results. Simple radon test kits are inexpensive and available at home improvement and hardware stores.

January is national Radon Action Month. For more information on radon, click here.
 
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RepKnowles.com
Office Locations
202 East Broad Street, Tamaqua, PA 18252 | Phone: 570-668-1240
61 North Third Street, Hamburg, PA 19526-1501 | Phone: 610-562-3411
314C Main Capitol, PO Box 202124, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2124 | Phone: 717-787-9029
Email: jknowles@pahousegop.com
TTY: 855-282-0614 
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