Our Property Tax Reform Legislation Was The Topic of Discussion at House Finance Committee Public Hearing
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The latest news from PA State Representative Rosemary Brown

District of Character
The “District of Character” is an initiative I created to enhance character development and promote daily reminders for residents of the 189th District about how we can create a stronger community without policy changes. No one is perfect, but we can always work to improve our character daily.
September word of the month is “Sensitivity.”
“Being aware of the feelings of others and reacting accordingly.”

Our Property Tax Reform Legislation Was The Topic of Discussion at House Finance Committee Public Hearing

On Thursday, Sept. 6, House Bill 2329, introduced by myself and Rep. Marcia Hahn, was brought before the House Finance Committee during a public hearing. This legislation would establish a property tax reform program to enable school districts to exclude up to 100 percent of a primary homeowner’s school property tax bill.

I want to thank those who came to testify at this week’s hearing as well as Chairman Bernie O’Neill and those on the House Finance Committee for hearing testimony regarding our legislation.
Pike County Senior Expo

I am co-hosting the 2018 Senior Citizens Expo with Rep. Mike Peifer on Friday, Sept. 14, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the Dingman Township Fire Hall, 680 Log Tavern Road in Milford, off State Route 739. The expo will feature more than 50 exhibitors. Admission is free. Light refreshments will be offered. Free flu shots will be provided by CVS Pharmacy. Prescription Drug Take-Back will be provided by Pike County Sheriff’s Office. Pike County Transportation is offering convenient, free transportation to this year’s expo for Pike County residents ages 65 and older. You must register in advance for this service by calling 570-296-3408 or 866-681-4947 by Sept. 11. For more information, please contact my district office at 570-420-8301 or Peifer’s office at 570-226-5959.

Lyme Disease and Tick-Borne Disease Prevention Seminar

I will be hosting a Lyme Disease and Tick-Borne Disease Prevention Seminar on Saturday, Sept. 15, from 9:30-11:30 a.m., at the East Stroudsburg University Innovation Center, 562 Independence Road, Room 336. Speakers for this seminar include Jackie Zulli, director of Legislative Affairs and Policy for Pennsylvania Lyme Resource Network; and Nicole Chinnici, director of ESU Northeast Wildlife DNA Laboratory. This is a free event, but you must register in advance by calling 570-420-8301. For more information, please contact my district office at 570-420-8301.
Happy Birthday!

Throughout the year, my office reaches out to our constituents on their birthdays to wish them a great day and to let them know about the services my office has available. House rules prevent certain types of mass communication and outreach 60 days prior to an election, including these types of calls. Happy birthday to all of you celebrating life during this timeframe. Many blessings!
PennDOT Making Plans to Roll Out REAL ID

Starting Sept. 4, eligible Pennsylvania residents who wish to obtain a REAL ID may begin the pre-verification process. Customers who received their first license before September 2003 and want to obtain a real ID will need to bring the required documents to a Driver License Center so they can be verified in person. (Residents who received their first license after September 2003 have been able to pre-verify since March.) Those documents include:
o Proof of identity (original or certified copy of a birth certificate with a raised seal or valid U.S. Passport). Please contact my office if you need a birth cerfiticate. Processing times can take several months.
o Unlaminated Social Security card.
o Proof of all legal name changes (marriage certificate or court order).
o Two proofs of current, physical Pennsylvania address (current, unexpired PA license or ID and a no more than 90-day-old bank statement or utility bill with the same name and address).
PennDOT staff will scan the documents to the customer’s record, and when REAL IDs are available in March 2019, the customer can opt into the REAL ID program online, and their REAL ID product will be sent through the mail.

To obtain a REAL ID, customers will pay a one-time fee of $30, plus a renewal fee (current renewal fee is $30.50 for a four-year non-commercial driver’s license or a photo ID). The expiration date of their initial REAL ID product will include any time remaining on their existing non-REAL ID product, plus an additional four years, unless the customer is over age 65 and has a two-year license.

This expiration date structure means that the customer won’t “lose” time for which they’ve already paid. After the initial REAL ID product expires, the customer will pay no additional fee, beyond regular renewal fees, to renew a REAL ID product.

When REAL IDs are available, customers will have three options for obtaining a REAL ID product: pre-verified customers may order their REAL ID online; they can visit a PennDOT Driver License Center, have their documents verified and scanned, pay the one-time fee, and their REAL ID product will be mailed to them within seven to 10 days; or they can visit one of up to 13 REAL ID Centers and receive their REAL ID product over-the-counter at the time of service.

PennDOT is in the process of retrofitting six of its existing driver’s license centers to allow for over-the-counter issuance of REAL ID (Williamsport, Wilkes-Barre, Rockview in Centre County, Erie, Altoona and South 70th Street in Philadelphia) and adding five new locations in the following regions: Pittsburgh, King of Prussia, Allentown, Harrisburg and Lancaster.

REAL ID is optional for Pennsylvania residents. A federally accepted form of identification must be used as identification to board a commercial flight or visit a secure federal building on and after Oct. 1, 2020. There is no requirement that any resident obtain a REAL ID and PennDOT will continue to offer standard-issue driver’s licenses and photo IDs.

More information about REAL ID in Pennsylvania, including frequently asked questions and information on documents required for REAL ID, can be found at  penndot.gov/REALID.
Pick-Up the Poconos Pick-Up Day on Sept. 29

My staff and I will be participating in this year’s Pick-Up the Poconos Pick-Up Day. This event will be taking place on Saturday, Sept. 29, from 9:30 a.m. to noon, rain or shine. Volunteer locations depend on which township and corresponding roadway you choose when signing up.

This project is being led by the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau, Middle Smithfield Township, along with the county commissioners and the Monroe County Council of Governments. I stood alongside these groups at a press conference they held on Aug. 31 as they announced this official county-wide litter pick-up day.

The goal of this event is to continue to keep the Poconos looking clean and beautiful by ridding it of the litter that lines many of its roads. Please consider signing up for this event, please click here.

Congratulations, Chef Nicola!

I recently stopped in at the re-opening of The Crescent Lodge and caught up with chef/manager, Nicola, and his wife, Melisa, during their soft opening of the first Chef Nicola Signature Restaurant. The food was delicious, and it was so nice to see the restaurant filled with wonderful people from our community.

Just a reminder: If you are encountering an issue with state government, please feel free to contact my district office. We are here to help you with the following services:      
 - Driver’s license and vehicle registration applications and renewals. 
 - Assistance with PennDOT paperwork (lost cards, changes, corrections, special registration plates, vanity plates, and temporary placards for disabled persons).                         
 - PACE and PACENET applications for seniors.                         
 - State Motor Vehicle and Driver Licensing Work.
 - Voter registration forms and absentee ballot applications.                         
 - State tax forms.                         
 - Student aid applications.                         
 - Free state maps, state park information, and PA Vacation Guides.                         
 - Copies of legislation and tours of the State Capitol.                         
 - Referrals to agencies to resolve state-related matters. 
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Office Locations
143 Seven Bridge Road, East Stroudsburg, PA 18301 | Phone: (570) 420-8301
164A East Wing, PO Box 202189, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2189 | Phone: (717) 260-6171
Email: rbrown@pahousegop.com
TTY: 855-282-0614
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