Jan. 20, 2023

Capitol Report
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Recently, I toured Messiah University and met with the school’s president, Kim S. Phipps. I also had the privilege to speak with several students about the many programs and opportunities that the Messiah provides. The school in Upper Allen Township enrolls more than 3,300 students.

Last week, I spoke with Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director Timothy Schaeffer who shared the latest information for Children’s Lake in Boiling Springs. Construction is underway, and the lake should be reopened this fall.

The Capital Region Council of Governments meeting this week provided an opportunity to reconnect with several government and policy leaders, including my colleague Rep. Sheryl Delozier; Shawn Fabian from Herbert, Rowland & Grubic Inc.; and Lower Allen Township’s Commissioners Dean Villone and Jennifer Caron, and manager Tom Vernau.

Earlier this week, I attended the Mechanicsburg Chamber of Commerce’s annual membership dinner and met with local business leaders throughout a variety of trades to discuss current and future needs within our community. Collaboration between government and local industry is key to ensuring long-term success in our local communities.
Inauguration Marks Start of Shapiro Administration

I was honored to attend the inauguration ceremony of Josh Shapiro, who was sworn in on Tuesday as Pennsylvania’s 48th Governor. Austin Davis was sworn in as Pennsylvania’s Lieutenant Governor earlier that morning. The ceremony commemorated a peaceful transfer of power from one administration to the next and I was pleased to join so many of my house colleagues and other leaders from across the commonwealth.
2022 Property Tax and Rent Rebate Applications Available Now

Forms for the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program are now available for eligible Pennsylvanians to begin claiming rebates on property taxes or rent paid in 2022. Remember – you do not need to pay anyone for assistance to apply for the rebates. Help is available from my offices at no charge.

The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older; widows and widowers age 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters, and half of Social Security income is excluded.

The maximum standard rebate is $650, but supplemental rebates for certain qualifying homeowners can boost rebates to $975. The Revenue Department automatically calculates supplemental rebates for qualifying homeowners.

The deadline to apply for a rebate is June 30. Rebates will be distributed beginning July 1, as required by law. Additional information, as well as claim forms, are available here.
Does Some of PA’s Unclaimed Property Belong to You?

The Pennsylvania Treasury estimates one in every 10 Pennsylvanians is owed unclaimed property by the state. You can easily find out if you are one of those citizens by visiting Treasury’s FREE unclaimed property database here.

Unclaimed property can include dormant bank accounts, abandoned stocks, uncashed checks and more. Property is always available for the rightful owner to claim. Tangible property may be auctioned after three years, but proceeds remain available to claim in perpetuity.

Military decorations and memorabilia – often turned over to Treasury from abandoned or forgotten safe deposit boxes – are never auctioned and remain in the vault for safekeeping until a veteran or their family is found. If you are a veteran or family member of a veteran, click here to check the database of unclaimed military items.   

You NEVER have to pay anyone to be reunited with your unclaimed property. If you find property that belongs to you, you may claim it through Treasury’s website or contact my office for assistance. You do not need to hire anyone to help you make your claim.  
Applications for 2023 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. Click here for more information and an application. Deadline to apply is April 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.