|Join Me for a Free Gun Law Seminar
Rep. Garth Everett and I will be hosting a series of Gun Law Seminars in October. Presenters will include Lycoming County Judge Marc Lovecchio, who will discuss Pennsylvania’s Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground laws; Lycoming County Sheriff Mark Lusk, who will explain rules and regulations surrounding licenses to carry firearms; a police officer, who will discuss how to safely interact with the police when carrying a firearm; and an officer from the Pennsylvania Game Commission, who will discuss firearm carry laws as they relate to hunting seasons.
The events are scheduled as follows:
Seating is limited and advance registration is required. To RSVP, click here, or contact the district office by calling (570) 321-1270 or emailing Kristi Marshall at email@example.com.
- Thursday, Oct. 18, 6-8 p.m. at Mountain View Alliance Church, 1515 Cemetery St., Jersey Shore.
- Tuesday, Oct. 23, 6-8 p.m. at Old Lycoming Township Volunteer Fire Co., 1600 Dewey Ave., Williamsport.
- Wednesday, Oct. 24, 6-8 p.m. at Hughesville Volunteer Fire Co.,2 S. Railroad St., Hughesville.
House Votes to Change Statute of Limitations
In a historic, bipartisan vote, the House passed legislation this week that would eliminate the criminal statute of limitations for prosecutions of sexual abuse of minors and extend the civil statute of limitations for lawsuits alleging sexual abuse of minors until the victim reaches 50 years of age.
The bill would waive sovereign and governmental immunity for claims, and it would open a two-year statute of limitations window for those victims claiming abuse who are beyond the age of 50.
According to statistics, one-third of victims of child sex abuse disclose the incidents when they are still children, while another one-third never disclose. For the remaining one-third, studies show that the average age to disclose is 52.
This legislation, Senate Bill 261, includes several of the recommendations outlined by the state attorney general after the August release of a report alleging widespread cover-up of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church across the state and dating back generations. The bill now goes back to the Senate for concurrence.
Organizations Given Option of Carrying EpiPens
To help save lives in emergency situations, the House unanimously approved legislation this week that would allow law enforcement and a variety of organizations and businesses to carry epinephrine auto-injectors, known as EpiPens.
House Bill 126 would permit a number of entities – law enforcement, recreation camps, colleges, universities, day cares, youth sports leagues, amusement parks, restaurants, places of employment and sports arenas – to stock a supply of EpiPens in the event a patron comes in contact with an allergen and has an anaphylactic reaction, which could be fatal.
Under the bill, a designated employee must receive training in how to recognize signs and symptoms of severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis; standards and procedures for the storage and administration of an epinephrine auto-injector; and emergency follow-up procedures. Immunity would be granted for those who reasonably administer the EpiPen in good faith.
Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE) reports that as many as 15 million individuals have food allergies, and 6 million of those individuals are children. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports the prevalence of food allergies in children increased by 50 percent between 1997 and 2011.
The bill has been sent back to the Senate for agreement.
Williamsport Earns Tree-Planting Grant
Williamsport has received an $8,281 grant to plant trees in the city through TreeVitalize, a public-private partnership established by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, to help build capacity within communities to plan for, plant, and care for trees, and to offer educational trainings to help citizens understand the diverse benefits of trees and the importance of properly planting and maintaining them. Learn more about the program here.
Keeping Your Septic System Safe
This past week – Sept. 17-21 – was designated SepticSmart Week, and is a good time to check your system to ensure it is in working order.
More than one in five households in the United States depend on individual onsite or small community cluster systems (septic systems) to treat their wastewater. These systems are used to treat and dispose of relatively small volumes of wastewater, usually from houses and businesses located in suburban and rural locations not served by a centralized public sewer system.
In keeping with the national observance, the Pennsylvania Septage Management Association (PSMA) offers the following tips to keep your septic system in good working order: inspect it annually, pump the tank every three to five years, don’t overload the commode, conserve water, plant trees away from tanks, redirect rain water and protect it during cold weather.
More information is available here.
Emergency Alert to Sound Test Next Week
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) on Oct. 3.
The wireless portion of the test commences at 2:18 p.m. EDT, and the EAS portion follows at 2:20 p.m. EDT. The test will assess the operational readiness of the infrastructure for distribution of a national message and determine whether improvements are needed.
The WEA test message will be sent to cell phones that are connected to wireless providers participating in WEA. During this time, WEA compatible cell phones that are switched on, within range of an active cell tower and whose wireless provider participates in WEA should be capable of receiving the test message. Some cell phones will not receive the test message, and cell phones should only receive the message once.
The EAS test is made available to EAS participants (i.e., radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers) and is scheduled to last approximately one minute. The test message will be similar to regular monthly EAS test messages with which the public is familiar.
The WEA system is used to warn the public about dangerous weather, missing children and other critical situations through alerts on cell phones. The national test will use the same special tone and vibration as with all WEA messages (i.e. tornado warning, AMBER Alert). Users cannot opt out of receiving the WEA test.