Oct. 11, 2019

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My Senior Expo is Coming Oct. 17
Mark your calendars! My Senior Expo is coming to the Montgomery Township Community and Recreation Center, 1030 Horsham Road in Montgomery Township, on Thursday, Oct. 17, from 10 to noon.

Exhibitors from local and state agencies, medical organizations and a variety of senior-focused organizations will be on hand to share their expertise and information on services and issues important to seniors.

Seniors and other interested residents can enjoy complimentary refreshments. Rite Aid will be providing flu shoots to seniors free of charge.

This event will help seniors become knowledgeable about the services and programs available to help them lead more active and productive lives. I encourage all older residents and their family members to attend this highly informative event.

Also, we will be collecting canned goods for local food pantries. Whatever you can give would be a big help.

The event is free. For more information, contact my office at 215-368-5165.

I’ve Been Elected Chair of Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing
I’m pleased to report that I have been elected chairman of the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing. This is a tremendous honor, but one that comes with great responsibility.

The Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing was formed by the General Assembly in 1978 to create a consistent and rational statewide sentencing policy promoting fairer and more uniform sentencing practices.

The commission adopts sentencing guidelines to be used in court to determine the appropriate sentence for defendants who plead guilty or nolo contendere to, or who were found guilty of, felonies and misdemeanors.

The guidelines are intended to help judges promote sentencing equity and fairness by providing them with a common reference point for sentencing similar offenders convicted of similar crimes.

I was appointed to the commission by House Majority Leader Bryan Cutler, and elected chairman by the commission, which is made up of four judges, four legislators, a prosecutor, a defense attorney and a law professor.

As a legislator, I have fought hard to protect victims of violent crimes. Last month, the House passed three bills I crafted to strengthen the penalties for felons who commit crimes with illegal guns. I will continue working to ensure victims of crimes receive the justice they deserve.

REAL ID Deadline Less Than One Year Away
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is reminding customers that federal enforcement of the REAL ID Act will begin at airports and secure federal facilities nationwide starting on Oct. 1, 2020.

As of that date, you will have to have a federally accepted form of identification – such as a Pennsylvania REAL ID driver’s license or identification card, or a U.S. passport/passport card or military ID – to board a commercial flight (including domestic flights) or visit a secure federal building that requires ID at the door.

Since March 2019, when REAL ID first became available in the Commonwealth, more than 400,000 Pennsylvanians have chosen to get a REAL ID-compliant product. Based on data from other states with optional REAL ID programs, PennDOT anticipates that approximately 1.3 million of its customers will get a REAL ID before the federal enforcement deadline next year.

Federal regulations require that to be issued a REAL ID-compliant product, PennDOT must verify a variety of documents to prove a person’s identity, including documentation of name changes, as well as their Social Security number and place of residence.

For information about required documents, how to get them verified and other frequently asked questions about REAL ID, click here.

Medicare Open Enrollment Starts Oct. 15
The state Department of Aging is reminding beneficiaries of the Medicare open enrollment period starting Tuesday, Oct. 15, and continuing through Saturday, Dec. 7. During this time, you may make changes to your current Medicare coverage, as well as join, switch or drop Medicare Advantage or Prescription Drug Coverage plans.

Pennsylvania offers a free health insurance counseling program, APPRISE, through the local Area Agency on Aging. APPRISE counselors are specially trained staff and volunteers who can provide objective, easy-to-understand information at no cost to you. They can help you understand Medicare eligibility, enrollment, financial assistance programs and coverage options, among other Medicare-related topics.

For more information, contact the local Area Agency on Aging or call the toll-free APPRISE Helpline at 1-800-783-7067, which is available Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Information is also available here.

Recognizing Domestic Violence Awareness Month
With approximately 95,000 victims seeking services through the Commonwealth’s domestic violence programs each year, the state House unanimously approved House Resolution 467 designating October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Pennsylvania.

Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior used to establish power and control over an intimate partner, causing both physical and emotional harm. Victims may be subjected to abuse, harassment, threats, vandalism, trespassing, burglary, theft and stalking.

As one of the most chronically underreported crimes, domestic violence affects men and women in all racial, ethnic, religious, educational, social and economic backgrounds.

More information about domestic violence and services available to help victims is available here.

PennDOT Closures for Columbus Day Weekend
All PennDOT driver license and photo centers, including its full-service center in Harrisburg, will be closed Saturday, Oct. 12, through Monday, Oct. 14, in observance of Columbus Day. Customers may still obtain a variety of driver and vehicle products and services, including all forms, publications and driver-training manuals, online through PennDOT’s Driver and Vehicle Services website,  dmv.pa.gov.
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  Office Locations
  515 Stump Road, North Wales, PA 19454 |  Phone: 215-368-5165
  4A East Wing, PO Box 202151, Harrisburg PA 17120-2151  |  Phone: 717-260-6163
  Email:  Tstephen@pahousegop.com
  TTY: 855-282-0614