Jan. 19, 2024

Capitol Report
The latest news from the State Capitol
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Hidden Creek Park Receives Grant Award

Hidden Creek Park, located in Silver Spring Township, was awarded $209,530 from the Commonwealth Financing Authority (CFA) Tuesday under the Greenways, Trails, and Recreation Program (GTRP).

The grant money received will be used to improve the park’s usability, by transforming a currently unpaved trail into a paved one, as well as increasing the park’s appeal to the Silver Spring community with the installation of new pickleball courts. The addition of new benches along the planned, newly paved trail will also be funded by this grant.

I am thrilled to see Hidden Creek Park receive this funding to improve an already fantastic part of the Silver Spring community. It is important to make sure that our community spaces are enjoyable for all ages, and with this funding Hidden Creek Park will become a more vibrant and inviting community space for the citizens of Silver Spring Township.

Mechanicsburg Chamber Hosts Annual Dinner

On Wednesday, I attended the Mechanicsburg Chamber of Commerce’s annual dinner. It was great to meet with our local business leaders and congratulate Mary Kuna, the chamber’s incoming president! Mary is also the president of the Cumberland County Housing and Redevelopment Authority and she will be an asset to our local chamber.

In the Classroom at Mechanicsburg Area School District

I had a great time connecting with students and teachers at Upper Allen Elementary and Mechanicsburg Middle schools this week! It’s always a pleasure to be in the classroom connecting with the future leaders of our communities and the Commonwealth! We had great conversations with the principals and superintendents about workforce needs and how the students at these schools have the opportunity to collaborate because of the unique floor plan of the building. A big thank you to the students, faculty and staff for welcoming me into their offices and classrooms!

An Evening with Leaders in the Capitol Region

This week, I attended the Capitol Region Council of Government’s (CapCog) annual dinner and reorganization meeting. It was great to join Harrisburg-area leaders for a discussion about the issues and events impacting our communities.
Human Trafficking Community Workshop Monday

Join me, Upper Allen Township, the Upper Allen Woman’s Club and community stakeholders and non-profits for a workshop about human trafficking in our community. Together, we can help put an end to their horrendous crime.

EXPANDED Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Now Open

The application period for the state’s 2023 Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program is now open for eligible Pennsylvanians to begin claiming rebates on property taxes or rent paid last year.

Income limits increased this year to $45,000 annually for both homeowners and renters, so if you were earning too much to qualify before, you may be eligible now. Remember to exclude 50% of Social Security when determining your income.

The law I supported to increase income limits also increased the maximum rebate to $1,000.

The program is open to residents age 65 years and older; widows and widowers 50 years and older; and people with disabilities 18 years and older.

Remember – you do not need to pay anyone for assistance to apply for the rebates. Apply online at mypath.pa.gov, or contact my office for help. Additional information about the program is available here.
Applications for 2024 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 15.

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.
$155 Million in Grants Available for School Safety, Security

The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) has approved a framework to invest more than $155 million in federal and state school safety funding:  

  •   $90 million for noncompetitive school mental health grants.
  •   $32.2 million for competitive school safety and security grants.
  •   $18.6 million for formula-based school safety and security meritorious grants.
  •   $14.5 million for targeted school safety grants for nonpublic schools.

Applications and information about each of these grants, including eligibility criteria and application instructions, can be found on PCCD’s School Safety and Security webpage. PCCD staff will also host informational webinars and provide other resources to assist school entities and eligible applicants as they navigate these funding opportunities.

The seven-week application period will close on Thursday, Feb. 29.
Applications Now Being Accepted for Fishing, Boating Education Grants

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) is now taking applications for its popular R3 Education Grant Program through March 1.

The R3 grant program was established to support partner organizations by providing hands-on education for the “recruitment, retention and reactivation” of anglers and boaters in Pennsylvania.

Organizations eligible for funding include school districts, universities and colleges, community and civic groups, sporting and conservation organizations, and local recreation departments.

The grants reimburse qualifying organizations up to $25,000 for eligible expenses for projects conducted from approximately July 1, 2024, through June 30, 2025. The grant requires a minimum 25% match of total project costs. At this time, applications for multi-year grants are not being accepted.

More information about the R3 grant program can be found here.