News You Can Use
6/30/2017
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New SEPTA Fares in Effect Tomorrow
I want to remind you that SEPTA’s new transit and regional rail fares will go into effect on Saturday, July 1. In keeping with the recommendations of the Pennsylvania Transportation Funding and Reform Commission, SEPTA has adopted a policy of making periodic fare adjustments, with the last increase in 2013.

For more information, click here.
Push Out the Pusher Program Underway
Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub collaborated with Rep. John Galloway to kick off a new “Push Out the Pusher” program to encourage residents to report drug activity. This new program is another effort to combat the heroin epidemic in our area.

Residents who report drug activity that results in a conviction will receive a $5,000 reward through the Bucks County Crime Stoppers. To report a tip, call 215-345-3784, or your local police department.
General Assembly Passes Budget

The House on Friday passed a $31.99 billion spending plan for the new fiscal year. While the budget we received back from the Senate spends more than what we sent them in April, I believe this is a fair budget that funds government while not increasing taxes. That is why I voted “yes.”

The 2017-18 fiscal year budget is just a 0.2 percent increase in spending over last year but also makes a substantial $100 million increase in Basic Education Funding for a total of $5.995 billion for the year. Pre-K Counts and Head Start funding also increased by $30 million to $226.5 million and Special Education Funding would now stand at $1.122 billion thanks to a $25 million increase.

But this budget clearly is not just about spending. It reflects cost-saving measures, such as merging the separate Department of Human Services and Department of Health into a singular, more efficient agency, to be known as the Department of Health and Human Services. The Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs and the Department of Aging will remain separate agencies. The budget would also merge the Department of Corrections with Probation and Parole. These mergers will help eliminate government redundancies.

The General Assembly still has to complete its revenue part of the budget and I anticipate that will happen next week. In passing this budget bill, we established a responsible spending number. We fully recognize the need to present to our constituents our plan to pay for this. Stay tuned!

Pay Turnpike Fines During Amnesty; Avoid Fees, Suspension

Pennsylvania motorists with unpaid tolls, violations or invoices are being offered partial amnesty by the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission before a new law takes effect that would suspend vehicle registrations for such violations.

Act 165 of 2016 allows the Turnpike Commission to request PennDOT to suspend the vehicle registration of any Pennsylvania motorist who has six or more unpaid turnpike violations, and/or unpaid invoices totaling $500 or more.

Enforcement of the new suspension rule takes effect on Friday, Aug. 4. Until then, toll violations that have not been placed with a collection agency may be settled by paying all violations or invoices in full. All administrative fees will be waived.

For more information, go to www.PATurnpike.com and click on “E-ZPass Violations” under the “Tolls/E-ZPass” at the top of the page.

Independence Day Reminders

This Tuesday, July 4, is our nation’s 241st birthday and marks the signing of the Declaration of Independence in nearby Philadelphia.

There will be plenty of celebrations, including right here in Bucks County, over the week and on Independence Day. Click this link to find events near you. I urge you all to celebrate safely and responsibly. Information about fireworks safety is available here.

If you are traveling this holiday, or anytime over the summer, check out www.511pa.com for traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 770 traffic cameras.

Also on July 4, my office and PennDOT’s driver license service centers will be closed. PennDOT customers can still obtain a number of driver and vehicle products and services, including all forms, publications and driver training manuals, online through PennDOT’s Driver and Vehicle Services website, www.dmv.pa.gov.

Have a safe and happy July 4!
 

                                   
July 4 Marks PA’s Second Fish-for-Free Day

The second Fish for Free Day in Pennsylvania will be held Tuesday, July 4. On Tuesday, state residents and non-residents do not need a fishing license to fish Pennsylvania’s waterways. All other fishing regulations apply.

To make the fishing experience more convenient, people can borrow equipment from dozens of fishing tackle loaner sites across the state. Click here for the complete list of loaner sites.
                                   
Numerous Nearby Staycation Options

Why spend time and money traveling far away when there is plenty to do here at home in Bucks County! Whether you are seeking out a historic museum or a relaxing park, there are ample recreational opportunities in your own backyard. The locations listed below are nearby, and great for day trips. Our area offers a variety of things to do which meet a wide range of interests. So when deciding where to take your family this summer, remember that great memories can be made right here at home.

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1032 N. Easton Rd, Doylestown, PA 18902-1055 | Phone: (215) 489-2126
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