|Congratulations Williamsport Regional Airport!
A groundbreaking ceremony was held this week for the new terminal at Williamsport Regional Airport by the Airport Authority Board. The new terminal will replace a structure built in 1947. My staff represented me at the event.
The project, supported with $5 million in funding from PennDOT, will feature a 30,000-square-foot terminal with state-of-the-art passenger processing and security systems when completed. The airport terminal has had scheduled passenger service since 1936, except for five years during World War II.
For more information about PennDOT’s support for aviation, click here.
2017 Shooting Expo Coming Sept. 30
My staff and I will have a legislative information table at the 2017 Shooting Expo Saturday, Sept. 30, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Consolidated Sportsmen of Lycoming County, State Route 87, outside Montoursville. The event is sponsored by National Sporting Goods.
In addition to our table, there will be informational displays from various groups, companies and manufacturers.
The event is designed for the entire family, as a safe youth shooting area will be provided. This is a free event.
For more information, click here.
Prepare Yourself for Emergencies
As the nation comes together to help those impacted by Hurricane Harvey, Pennsylvania officials are reminding residents that National Preparedness Month begins Sept. 1. Throughout the month, households, businesses and communities are encouraged to prepare and plan for emergencies.
Well before emergencies strike, simple steps can be taken to prepare a family, school, workplace or community for any type of incident that would disrupt the day-to-day routine. Citizens are encouraged to visit ReadyPA.org to find sample checklists, contact lists and other preparedness tools to take advantage of before an emergency occurs. In particular, people should think about loved ones who may have special needs that could inhibit their ability to help themselves.
Follow @ReadyPA on Twitter and like facebook.com/BeReadyPA for additional helpful tips and information.
$1 Fishing Licenses to be Offered on Labor Day
To encourage the love of fishing, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission is offering two special fishing opportunities to fish on Labor Day, Sept. 4.
The first is a $1 license for adult residents and non-residents good for Labor Day only.
The second opportunity is the Mentored Youth Panfish Day. This provides youth anglers, who have obtained a free mentored youth permit or have purchased a voluntary youth license, an opportunity to fish on 19 Panfish Enhancement lakes. Panfish include bluegill, pumpkinseed and redear sunfish, which are collectively called sunfish; black and white crappies; and yellow perch.
The 19 lakes will be open to all anglers all day, but only mentored youth participants (adults and kids) may keep fish under the minimum size.
More information is available here.
To participate in the mentored youth program, adult anglers (16 years or older) must have a valid Pennsylvania fishing license and be accompanied by a youth. Accompanying youth anglers must have either a free PFBC-issued permit or a purchase a voluntary youth fishing license. Both permits and licenses can be obtained at GoneFishingPA.com.
New Law Gets Tough on Animal Abusers
Animals now have greater protection thanks to a tough, new law targeting those who abuse animals which took effect Monday, Aug. 28.
Act 10 of 2017, also known as Libre’s Law, strengthens existing animal cruelty laws and makes it easier to prosecute a person who knowingly mistreats, abuses or neglects an animal.
Specifically, the new law outlines three tiers of cruelty and neglect, with charges ranging from a summary offense for denying an animal food or shelter to a third-degree felony for intentionally torturing an animal or causing serious bodily injury or death.
The new law also requires convicted animal abusers to forfeit their animals, sets limits on how long an animal can be tethered outdoors, and clarifies penalties for abusing a horse.
Hunter-Trapper Education Boosts Safety
Interested in hunting or trapping in Penn’s Woods? By law, all first-time hunters and trappers, regardless of age, must successfully complete Hunter-Trapper Education (HTE) training before they can buy a Pennsylvania hunting or trapping license.
A training certificate, which is recognized throughout North America, is awarded when the individual passes the test at the end of the course. Individuals must be at least 11 years old to enroll in a class. The training is designed to produce safe, responsible, knowledgeable and involved participants. Due to hunter education, hunting is safe and getting safer.
Two options are available to complete the course -- in a classroom or entirely online (for those who are 16 years of age or older). Click here to learn more about HTE and view other training programs available.
PHEAA Encourages Caution with Solicitations
The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) reminds students and families to be extremely cautious if solicited by any company offering financial aid application assistance, scholarship searches or student loan debt relief, such as through loan consolidation, loan cancellation, loan forgiveness or defaulted loan assistance. These companies typically charge significant upfront fees for services – sometimes through non-existent programs – that are readily available for free from the federal government.
To find financial aid opportunities, parents and students should research FREE sites such as EducationPlanner.org, MySmartBorrowing.org, StudentAid.ed.gov and StudentLoans.gov. In addition, NerdWallet’s Watch List names companies that charge for fraudulent or questionable debt relief services.
Students and families who believe they have been targeted or victimized by a scam should complain to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Traveling Over Labor Day? Check Traffic Conditions on 511PA.com
Travelers can log onto 511PA.com to check current traffic impacts from construction, traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 770 traffic cameras. The service is free and available 24 hours a day.
511PA is also available through a smartphone application for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1, or by following regional Twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website.
Travelers are always reminded to buckle up, put their phones away and stay sober when behind the wheel.
In other PennDOT news, driver license and photo centers will be closed Saturday, Sept. 2, through Monday, Sept. 4, for Labor Day. Customers may still obtain a variety of driver and vehicle products and services online through PennDOT’s Driver and Vehicle Services website, dmv.pa.gov.