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Boscola Bulletin

More than $1.3M in DCNR Grants Have Found Their Way to the Lehigh Valley

In the past the week, I have been very proud to announce that the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) has awarded a total of $1,325,000 in grants in the 18th Senatorial District through the Community Conservation Partnerships Program (C2P2) specifically for Community Parks (Development, Planning, Small Community) and Partnerships projects, as well as trail projects and land conservation projects.

The following grants were approved:

  • Wildlands Conservancy, Inc., $500,000,  acquisition of approximately 168 acres in Salisbury and Upper Saucon Townships for the creation of a new preserve and the protection of approximately 19 acres in Upper Saucon Township in the form of a land donation. 
  • Hellertown Borough, $228,200, Rehabilitation and further development of Authority Park. Project includes the renovation of concession stand; construction of comfort station and parking area; installation of fencing; ADA access, project sign.
  • Northampton County, $200,000, Rehabilitation and further development of Wy-Hit-Tuk County Park, located in Williams Township. Project includes construction of a comfort station, pavilions, pedestrian walkways and stormwater management measures; installation of play equipment with required safety surfacing; ADA access, landscaping, project sign and other related site improvements.
  • City of Bethlehem, $210,000, Further development of the Rose Garden
  • City of Bethlehem, $40,000 to prepare a study for the development of a pedestrian bridge over the Lehigh River in Bethlehem City, Northampton County.
  • Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor, Inc., $150,000 to prepare a trail study for the development of approximately 3.9 miles of the D&L Trail in Hanover Township (Lehigh County), Whitehall Township and the City of Allentown.

The C2P2 program is administered by DCNR’s Bureau of Recreation and Conservation to provide financial and technical assistance to local governments, rail and trail organizations, land trusts and other non-profits for park, recreation, conservation and greenway projects.  The Recreation and Conservation grant program is funded with a variety of state and federal funding sources including, the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund (Key 93) which includes Key-Community and Key-Land Trust; the Environmental Stewardship Fund (ESF).

November is Military Family Appreciation Month

Military Family Education Program

Military families know what it means to serve. Every day, they get up and support their service member, standing by during long trainings and deployments. They know the risks, but they accept this life of service anyway.  Military families are the backbone of the military – they keep everything in line on the home front – the fuel that keeps the fire burning. They believe in what their active serving member does on a daily basis makes a difference.

In Pennsylvania, we recognize this dedication and sacrifice from military families and offer a first-in-the-nation benefit, Military Family Education Program. It is open to any Pennsylvania Guard member who re-enlists for 6 years and offers 5 years of tuition-free college education at a PHEAA-approved school for their spouse and children.

The 2020 LIHEAP Season is Now Open!

LIHEAPThe Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) began accepting applications for this season’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) on Nov 1.  The program helps low income families pay their heating bills.  You can apply and check the status of your application on the state’s COMPASS website (www.compass.state.pa.us).  You can also pick up an application in my district offices or download one yourself from the DHS LIHEAP website.

Funding for LIHEAP is provided by the federal government and eligibility is based on the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.  The income limits for this season are as follows:

Household Size Income Limit
1 $18,735
2 $25,365
3 $31,995
4 $38,625
5 $45,255
6 $51,885
7 $58,515
8 $65,145
9 $71,775
10 $78,405

After your application is received you will receive a written notice explaining your eligibility and the amount of assistance you will receive.  Payments are generally sent directly to a utility company or fuel provider and will be credited to your heating account.  Crisis grants may also be available if you have an emergency situation and are in jeopardy of losing your heat.  For more information, please contact the LIHEAP hotline at 1-866-857-7095.

DEADLINE ALERT: Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Deadline Rapidly Approaching

Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Deadline - December 31, 2019REMINDER: The deadline to submit an application to the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue for the 2018 Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program is Dec. 31, 2019.  Applications are available at my district offices, online at www.revenue.pa.gov or by calling 610-868-8667.  As always, my staff would be happy to assist you in preparing your application and submitting it on your behalf.

The Property Tax/Rent 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.  Please keep in mind, half of Social Security income is excluded.

Grants for Those who Assist & Support Veterans & their Families are Available

PA Veterans Trust FundThe Pennsylvania Department of Military & Veteran’s Affairs Veterans’ Trust Fund is NOW accepting grant applications for programs & services benefiting Pennsylvania Veterans.

A combined total of $800,000 in grant funding is available for the 2019-20 grant cycle. 

$650,000 in funding is available for grants of up to $50,000 for the following types of eligible applicants: 

  • veterans’ service organizations (VSOs) with 501(c)(19) status under the Internal Revenue Code; and
  • non-profit organizations with a mission of serving Pennsylvania veterans granted 501(c)(3) status under the Internal Revenue Code.

$150,000 in funding is available for the following types of eligible applicants:

  • individual eligible counties may receive up to the maximum of $20,000 per grant cycle; and
  • the State Association of County Directors of Veterans Affairs may receive up to the maximum of $150,000 per grant cycle.

The deadline to apply is Dec.18. Established in 2012, the VTF builds partnerships w charitable organizations, veterans service organizations & county directors of veterans affairs to fund improved assistance & support for Pennsylvania veterans & their families.

Fun Fact:

November is National Aviation month – did you know that as of April 2019, PA ranks 13th in the nation in the number of public-use aviation facilities with 127 airports, heliports, & seaplane bases?

Aviation

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Offices of State Senator Lisa M. Boscola

www.senatorboscola.com

BETHLEHEM OFFICE
One East Broad Street
Suite 120
Bethlehem, PA 18018
(610) 868-8667
Fax: (610) 861-2184
Toll-free: 1-877-535-1818
EASTON OFFICE
1701 Washington Blvd.
Easton, PA 18042
(610) 250-5627
(610) 250-5629
Fax: (610) 250-1889
HARRISBURG OFFICE
458 Main Capitol Building
Senate Box 203018
Harrisburg, PA 17120-3018
(717) 787-4236
Fax: (717) 783-1257
Senate of PA:
1-800-364-158 (TTY)