In this email update:
WHY the Argall family celebrates July 4th and 8th
Way back on July 8th, 1848, Thomas Argall arrived in New York Harbor on the Roscius from Liverpool, England. This distant ancestor arrived to America at the age of 28 with his wife, Jane, and three children. He moved to Pottsville from Cornwall, England. When I asked an English cousin why the Argall family left Cornwall, the answer was simple: the Irish Potato Famine also devastated Cornwall, the local mines were closing, and they left so they would not starve. The result: Hello, Pottsville! As we celebrate the July 4th Holiday, just think how many of us share similar stories on how we became Americans. Enjoy this special holiday and remember its meaning.
Viel Spass in Kutztown! (Much fun)
After a long, long, week in Harrisburg (left Sunday, returned home late Thursday night), Beth and I enjoyed a visit this week to the Kutztown Folk Festival on Sunday. The PA Dutch foods reminded me of my Grandma Miller’s kitchen, and the dialect….well let’s just say it’s not exactly the way I learned the German language in high school and college. The funny thing is, my mom’s parents, who grew up speaking this dialect back home more than one hundred years ago on their farms on the Montgomery/Berks County line, would have understood every word, while their “more educated” grandson really struggled with the translations.
The festival will be open until July 7th. Here is a link for more details.
Former Intern doing great things!
My Former intern, John Matulevich of St. Clair, will ride cross country to raise money for 2 charities. He plans on biking for 43 days from the Golden Gate Bridge to Garfield Square in Pottsville. He will be biking 90 miles per day to achieve this feat. The goal is to raise money for Hillside SPCA and Back in Black Rescue. John was an intern during the spring of 2017. He is an Eagle Scout who graduated from Bloomsburg University. Keep up the great work, John. I look forward to joining you on the final leg of your ride. You can read more about his planned ride here.
Argall TV Report: Senator for a Day
Last month, I hosted my annual “Senator for a Day” program at Penn State Schuylkill, one of my favorite annual events. The purpose of this event is to familiarize high school students with current issues and the legislative process.
Students from Schuylkill and Berks Counties debated and voted on a variety of bills that have also been discussed in the General Assembly. Bills included lowering the driving age in Pennsylvania, privatizing the liquor industry in the state and proposals to limit the burden of school property taxes.
Area schools that participated in this year’s program included Blue Mountain High School, Fleetwood Area High School, Hamburg Area High School, Kempton New Church School, Mahanoy Area High School, Marian Catholic High School, Minersville Area Jr./Sr. High School, Nativity BVM High School, North Schuylkill High School, Pottsville Area High School, Saint Clair Area Middle School, Schuylkill Haven Area High School, Shenandoah Valley High School, Tamaqua Area High School, Tri-Valley Junior/Senior High School and Tulpehocken High School.
You can watch the show here.
Coal Cracker Kids receive funding from DEP
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) awarded $205,000 to 45 different environmental projects around the state. A group in Schuylkill County received some of that funding. Coal Cracker Kids in Mahanoy City received $3,000 for their street rain garden installation used to help educate members of the community. You can read more about the project here.
Buffington Bridge Bill heading to the Governor’s desk
At the request of the Valley View Park Association, The House and Senate passed a bill to rename a bridge on State Route 4011, Gap Road, Hegins Township, in memory of A. Donald Buffington. Buffington was from Hegins Township and served as a board member of the Valley View Park Association and as a member of the Tri-Valley School Board for several decades. He was a Funeral Director for the former Buffington Funeral Home and the Buffington-Reed Funeral Home, both of Valley View.
Buffington was also active as a baseball coach and was the first Teener League coach from Schuylkill County to win the State Championship in 1970. He was a member of Friedens United Church of Christ in Hegins, Valley View Gun Club, and Valley View Fire Company.
This is a tribute to a gentleman who devoted his life to serving his community to make it a better place!
Unique Insight from Senator Folmer regarding election reform
Senator Folmer (R-48th) is frustrated with the debate over much-needed election reforms. Here is the link for the full article.
Record Revenue from Shale Gas impact Fee
The Public Utility Commission reported that the state’s impact fee on natural gas wells for the most recent reporting period totaled over $252 Million. This broke the 2013 record of $225 million. The impact fee has collected over $1.7 Billion for the state since its enactment in 2012. You can read more about this topic here.