Senator Argall E-Newsletter

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In this update:

  • Punishing Looters and Thieves
  • The Foul Odors MUST STOP
  • Keeping Pennsylvania Tax Dollars out of the Hands of War Criminals
  • Happy Hanukkah!
  • Wreaths Across America Convoy Stops in Blue Mountain
  • Mahanoy Area’s Nick Ortiz Spends a Day in the Capitol
  • Telephone Town Hall: The Housing Shortage and Unfair Taxes
  • Drug-Free Calendar Contest Winners Visit Harrisburg
  • Celebrating Bill of Rights Day

Punishing Looters and Thieves

My bill to punish looters was approved with strong bipartisan support in the House of Representatives and Senate and has been signed into law by the Governor.

Retail theft has become a plague on employers large and small in recent years. The widespread looting that occurred in Philadelphia just a few weeks ago was shocking to see – but the spike in these crimes affects communities across Pennsylvania. A recent study by Forbes ranked PA as the fifth highest state for organized retail crime in the nation.

We must take harsh action to deter these criminals and protect family-sustaining jobs in Pennsylvania.

The Foul Odors MUST STOP

Rep. JoAnne Stehr I continue to hear from residents in many western Schuylkill County communities about the nasty smells that too many people are encountering in their homes. It’s frustrating to me that the company, Natural Soil Products, continues to fail to properly address this issue, despite fines from the PA Department of Environmental Protection and months of complaints.

If you continue to suffer from these noxious smells, please register the nature and the time of your complaint at the DEP hotline: 570-826-2511. In addition, please do not hesitate to contact any of my local offices if you have additional information which will help us to resolve this issue, which has already impacted too many people for FAR TOO LONG.

Keeping Pennsylvania Tax Dollars out of the Hands of War Criminals

My bill to ban the Russian government from receiving Pennsylvania taxpayer dollars won unanimous, bipartisan approval in the House and has been signed into law by the Governor.

We’re approaching the second anniversary of the start of the war, and Ukraine still holds strong against the unprovoked onslaught of the Russians. Despite the innumerable war crimes and thousands of fallen soldiers and civilians, a recent report noted that Russia has lost 87% of the total number of active-duty ground troops it had prior to their invasion.

My constituents of Ukrainian descent have been loud and clear – we need to keep PA taxpayer dollars out of the hands of the war criminals who aim to conquer the home of their distant cousins.

Happy Hanukkah!

Last weekend, Rep. Dane Watro, our spouses, and I were invited to the Hazleton Jewish Community Center’s annual Hanukkah celebration at the Agudas Israel Synagogue. Thank you for the kind invitation and for allowing us to take part in your beautiful traditions. To all who celebrate: Chag sameach!

The theme of Hannukah – or the festival of light – is one of community, courage, and the acknowledgment that miracles do exist. For over 2,000 years the Jewish people have celebrated this important holiday as a time for joy and togetherness. Even though the world may seem dark now, as we all continue to grapple with the aftermath of Hamas’ barbaric antisemitic attacks, there is still hope for a better tomorrow.

Wreaths Across America Convoy Stops in Blue Mountain

Blue Mountain Middle School hosted a beautiful Wreaths Across America ceremony on Thursday morning to remember and honor our brave veterans who fought to preserve our freedom.

Every year, a convoy of trucks travels from Maine to Arlington National Cemetery carrying wreaths for the headstones of the thousands of veterans buried on that hallowed ground. It’s widely considered the “largest veterans parade in the nation.”

Mahanoy Area’s Nick Ortiz Spends a Day in the Capitol

I welcomed Nick Ortiz to the Capitol this week to show him a busy session day in the Pennsylvania Senate.

Nick is a senior at Mahanoy Area High School. He’s a class officer and focuses much of his time supporting local volunteer groups. He plans to pursue a degree in Criminal Justice once he graduates from high school.

If you know a local student who is interested in shadowing me for a day, please contact any of my offices.

Telephone Town Hall: The Housing Shortage and Unfair Taxes

Thank you to everyone who joined Rep. Watro and me for our telephone town hall earlier this week – we had hundreds of constituents join us. We heard a lot about the need for new housing in our area and how our archaic system of school property taxes unfairly penalizes many homeowners.

I’ll be sharing the results of the three poll questions on my Facebook page.

Drug-Free Calendar Contest Winners Visit Harrisburg

Rep. Doyle Heffley and I welcomed some very special guests to the Capitol this week!

Katherine Diehl from Lehighton Area Elementary Center, Manylah Mirco from Panther Valley Intermediate School, and Amelia Tubbs from S.S. Palmer Elementary School in Palmerton were winners of the PA Office of Attorney General’s annual Drug-Free Calendar Contest. They created original artwork with a drug-free message and were among 13 students in all of Pennsylvania that were selected as winners. Congratulations on a job well done!

You can see their winning submissions here.

Celebrating Bill of Rights Day

Friday, Dec. 15, is Bill of Rights Day, when we recognize how the first 10 amendments to the Constitution give us rights that are uniquely American. For 232 years, these amendments have given us the right to speak our mind, defend our families and worship as we see fit.

We hold those liberties – and the others that make up the Bill of Rights – dear and cherish how they impact our daily life as the true framework of our society.

Bill of Rights Day was first observed on the document’s 150th anniversary when former President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued a proclamation dedicating Dec. 15 as the day to recognize our God-given rights.

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