Aug. 23, 2019

Road Slide Project Update

Good news to report! Rochester Road is expected to open later today. This week, PennDOT started to work on the landslide repair in Franklin Park.

They fixed two spots where a landslide happened along Rochester Road. PennDOT advises motorists to remain cautious when driving in that area.
Honoring Our Newest Eagle Scouts

 Andrew Scott Briercheck (left) and Henry George Gaffey (right), both from Boy Scout Troop 344, earned the rank of Eagle Scout - the highest achievement of rank a young man can attain in the Boy Scouts of America. We celebrated at their Court of Honor last weekend. Congratulations to Andrew, Henry, their families and Scoutmaster Glenn Cottrell.
 Congratulations to Kenny Behrend on earning the rank of Eagle Scout. He is a member of Troop 81. You can see Kenny out and about doing community service in our area. He gives credit to his family and Scoutmaster Damian Zottoli for their advice and support. It was a treat celebrating with Kenny last weekend.
 Stephen Thompson also attained the rank of Eagle. He is a member of Troop 81. We celebrated his Court of Honor Saturday with his family and Scoutmaster Zottoli, who are equally deserving of congratulations for supporting Stephen.
 It is very exciting to be a part of the Eagle Court of Honor because it’s one of the most exhilarating and important events in a young man’s life. By earning the Eagle Award, the Scout has demonstrated his commitment to himself, community and troop. On Saturday, we had the honor to celebrate with Eagle Scout Adam Snider and his parents. Adam is with Troop 171. Congratulations to Adam, his family and to John Vogt, scoutmaster.
Register for Senior’s ConnectCard at My District Office


Our constituents can register for the Port Authority Senior Citizen ConnectCard at our main district office, located at 125 Hillvue Lane, First Floor, in McCandless. You can also call us at 412-369-2230.

The Senior Citizen ConnectCard permits adults age 65 or older to ride for free on Port Authority vehicles, including buses, light rail and inclines, during all hours of operation. The ConnectCard can be used with other transportation authorities across the Commonwealth by flashing the card to the operator.

It is important to bring valid proof-of-age documentation with you to our office. We will accept a photo driver’s license, PA ID card, passport, PACE ID card, armed forces discharge/separation papers or a birth certificate.

Seniors are reminded that their blue or yellow transit flash passes will continue to be accepted, but if you currently show the driver a Medicare card to ride public transit in Allegheny County or you will soon be turning 65, you will need to get a Senior ConnectCard before Jan. 1, 2020.
Save for Higher Education with State 529 Plan

For families looking to plan for higher education, the Pennsylvania Treasury offers two savings programs: the PA 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan (GSP), in which growth is tied to the rate of tuition inflation, and the PA 529 Investment Plan (IP), in which investment returns are determined by financial markets.

Contributions to PA 529 plans are deductible from Pennsylvania income taxes, grow tax free, and when used for qualified educational expenses, are federal and state tax exempt. Both plans provide flexibility to pay for higher education expenses at most higher education institutions across the country, including colleges and universities, as well as many technical and career schools. The money may also be used to pay for tuition expenses up to $10,000 at elementary or secondary public, private or religious schools.

The PA 529 GSP is offering free enrollment – a $50 savings – for all new accounts opened before Aug. 31. Sign up at and use code “SUMMERGSP” when prompted.                                    

Information about both programs is available here.
Seeking Investigation of PA’s Parole Processes

Responding to a series of murders committed by people recently paroled from the state prison system, the House Judiciary Committee is calling for an investigation of the state’s parole procedures by Inspector General Bruce Beemer.

While the Department of Corrections is rightfully conducting an internal review of these cases to determine if improvements can be made to prevent such tragedies, it is also vital to conduct an independent investigation to ensure every effort is being made to protect public safety.

In a letter to the inspector general, Judiciary Committee Chairman Rob Kauffman (R-Franklin) pointed to the stabbing deaths of three children and a woman, the strangulation parolees as evidence of the need for an investigation.
Savings Program to Support People with Disabilities Experiences Rapid Growth

A state program designed to help people with qualified disabilities save for future disability-related expenses has more than doubled its assets in just one year, reflecting the high level of popularity and need for this savings option.

PA ABLE provides a tax-advantaged way for Pennsylvanians with disabilities and their families to save.

Participation does not jeopardize access to state and federal programs, such as Supplemental Security Income (savings up to $100,000) and Medical Assistance. But it does allow for savings to be used to pay for any qualified disability-related expense including housing, education, health care and assistive technology to improve quality of life.

Administered by the State Treasury, the program has more than $18.4 million in assets, up from $8.6 million in July 2018. More than 2,500 PA ABLE accounts have been opened since the program was launched in 2017.

For more information, visit or call 1-855-529-ABLE (2253).