Senator Pittman E-Newsletter

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In this Update:

  • IUP Makerspace Event in Armstrong County
  • Pennsylvania Senate Acts to Target Opioid Overdoses
  • Court Ruling Helps to Safeguard Elections
  • Survey: Sunday Hunting in Pennsylvania
  • YMCA of Indiana County Good Friday Breakfast
  • Destroy Spotted Lanternfly Eggs, Support PA Agriculture
  • PA Broadband Development Authority Unveils Improved Website
  • Mobile Van Connects Veterans with Important Services, Programs
  • Honoring Sacrifice on Gold Star Spouses Day

IUP Makerspace Event in Armstrong County

Pictured with me from L to R: Michael Baker, Chairman, Armstrong Industrial Development Corporation; Dr. Hilliary Creely, Dean of IUP School of Graduate Studies; Dr. Frederick (Rick) Adkins, IUP STEAMSHOP Director and professor in the Department of Mathematical and Computer Sciences; Sean Derry, IUP professor of Studio Art; Rich Fitzgerald, Executive Director of the Southwest Pennsylvania Commission; Jennifer Gilburg, Deputy Secretary of Technology and Entrepreneurship for Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development; Thomas Chernisky, Cambria County Commissioner; Sharon Massey, IUP Studio Art faculty; Patrick Joyal, Southwest Region Director for Gov. Josh Shapiro; and Dr. Michael Driscoll, IUP President

It is always great to participate in events exploring new and innovative ways to engage with students and our surrounding communities.

Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) officials recently hosted a tri-county visioning event at the Northpointe campus for their entrepreneurial “makerspace” initiative. The goal of this enterprise is to address regional needs by sharing resources to expand the impact on the workforce and economic development of Armstrong, Indiana and Cambria counties.

This is a great opportunity to determine collaboration among multiple counties and higher education, while opening doors for students to find career paths here in western Pennsylvania!

Pennsylvania Senate Acts to Target Opioid Overdoses

As part of our ongoing efforts to enhance the health and safety of communities across Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Senate recently passed Senate Bill 1054, introduced by my colleague Sen. Doug Mastriano.

The legislation would require the Department of Health to coordinate with the Pennsylvania State Police to ensure real-time overdose reporting by EMS providers is incorporated into a statewide tracking system known as the Overdose Information Network (ODIN) system.

EMS providers are responsible for handling more than 80% of overdoses annually in Pennsylvania. The access to real-time data helps public officials ensure adequate overdose reversal drug supplies are available, substance use outreach efforts are enhanced and law enforcement investigations are undertaken to interrupt sources of deadly substances.

Court Ruling Helps to Safeguard Elections

The safeguarding of elections in Pennsylvania was boosted by the Third Circuit Court’s recent ruling upholding current Pennsylvania law, requiring voters to date a mail-in ballot for it to be accepted.

Many voters, election officials and good government advocates feel preserving election integrity must be a priority. The first step toward that goal is upholding laws that are already in place. While this may seem obvious, in recent elections some counties accepted and counted undated ballots – despite the state law prohibiting that action.

Applying the election law uniformly across all 67 counties is a significant step forward in the effort to protect the integrity of our electoral process. Senate Republicans will continue to work to protect Pennsylvanians’ constitutional right to free and fair elections.

Survey: Sunday Hunting in Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, Sunday hunting is currently allowed for three days throughout the calendar year: one day during deer rifle season, one day during deer archery season and one day as determined by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

I would appreciate hearing your thoughts on this topic.

When looking at possible changes to our current Sunday hunting law, do you support adding additional Sundays? Decreasing the number of Sundays? Keeping the same number of Sundays?

Please take a moment to visit my website and complete the survey.

YMCA of Indiana County Good Friday Breakfast

Pictures courtesy of fanzo captures 2024

I was honored to attend the 67th Annual Good Friday breakfast, hosted by YMCA of Indiana County.

Thank you to Dr. Marie Cosgrove for sharing your compelling and faith-filled story!

Pictured with me in one of the photos are Gregg Van Horn and Indiana County District Attorney Bob Manzi.

Destroy Spotted Lanternfly Eggs, Support PA Agriculture

Spotted lanternflies are an invasive pest that could damage the state’s grape and wine industries, as well as other types of agriculture.

This time of year, Pennsylvanians can take an important step to control the spotted lanternfly population. While most adult spotted lanternflies have frozen to death, their eggs can survive over the winter. A single egg mass holds 30 to 50 eggs.

The egg masses – which can commonly be found on trees, rocks and equipment stored outdoors – should be scraped into a bag of hand sanitizer. Learn what the egg masses look like during various stages and find more information about how to destroy them here.

PA Broadband Development Authority Unveils New Website

The Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority (PBDA) launched a new website aimed at offering visitors a more intuitive experience.

New features include a navigation panel for locating information; quick links to hot topic resources; real-time data on unserved/underserved locations, projects awarded and funding allocated; and resources that are specifically tailored for various audiences.

Created by the General Assembly, the mission of the PBDA is to expand access to high-speed internet. The authority is accepting applications until April 20 from community anchor institutions and units of local government to fund community projects that enable public work, education and health monitoring.

Mobile Van Connects Veterans with Important Services, Programs

Pennsylvania is home to more than 700,000 veterans and their family members. With such a significant veteran population, the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) works hard to connect veterans and their families with the services and programs available to them.

One way the agency can meet and assist veterans in the communities they live is through one of its two mobile veterans outreach vans. They travel throughout the state to assist veterans in obtaining information and initiating benefit claim paperwork with the assistance of DMVA accredited veteran service officers.

Request a van for a community event such as a sporting event, county fair, parade or festival. The form should be submitted six months but not less than 45 days prior to the event. Requests with less than a 30-day turnaround will be handled on a space available basis only.

Honoring Sacrifice on Gold Star Spouses Day

Friday, April 5, is Gold Star Spouses Day – a day when we pause to reflect on the incredible loss felt by men and women who have lost their partners in the line of duty.

It was first recognized in 2010 as Gold Star Wives Day. Later, it was updated to include any surviving spouse of any person of the United States military who died while a member of the armed forces of our country or who died after such service as a result of an injury or disability incurred during such service.


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