Senator Culver E-Newsletter

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In this Update:

  • Veterans Assistance Hours at Mount Carmel Office
  • Job Opportunities! Senate Republican Caucus Job Fair
  • Metal Mania Recycling on Earth Day
  • Senate Concludes State Budget Hearings
  • My Questions During Budget Hearings
  • Monthly Appropriations Update Shows Lagging Tax Collections
  • Safely Dispose of Unused Prescriptions on April 22
  • Farmers, Help PA Claim Federal Funding
  • State Grant Deadline is May 1 for PA College Students

Veterans Assistance Hours at Mount Carmel Office

Local veterans or their families are invited to schedule appointments to meet with an American Legion officer at our Mount Carmel district office on Friday, April 21, for help applying for programs, services and benefits.

There are many programs and services available to help Pennsylvania military veterans and their families. This is an excellent opportunity for veterans to learn about their benefits and determine their eligibility.

American Legion Department Service Officer Bill McGovern will be at our office on April 21, from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Veterans or their family members can call our Mount Carmel office at 570-339-5937 to schedule an appointment.

Our office will host veterans assistance hours with McGovern at the same time on the third Friday of each month.

We appreciate everything our veterans have done to protect and defend our nation. We want to help our veterans access every benefit they earned through their service to our country.

Our Mount Carmel office is located at 10934 State Route 61.

Job Opportunities! Senate Republican Caucus Job Fair

The Pennsylvania Senate Republican Caucus is hosting a job fair on Wednesday, April 19, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Rooms 8E-A and 8E-B at the Pennsylvania Capitol.

Attendees should arrive interview ready and bring multiple copies of their resume.

More information, including a list of benefits offered through caucus employment, can be found on this flyer.

Metal Mania Recycling on Earth Day

Earth Day is Saturday, April 22, and you’re invited to participate in the Metal Mania Recycling event from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the rear of Bader’s Fine Furniture Store, located at the intersection of Sunbury Street and Liberty Street, Shamokin.

Please enter on Liberty Street and exit on Orange Street.

The recyclers will be accepting washers, dryers, refrigerators, microwaves, garbage cans, lids, box fans, cookie sheets, file cabinets, metal furniture, pots, pans, small metal appliances, toasters, metal charcoal grills, air conditioners and anything made from metal.

The recyclers cannot accept computers, laptops or television sets.

There is no charge for recycling.

This event is being sponsored by the Faith Alliance for Revitalization (FAR), City of Shamokin Environmental Resiliency Plan, Better Together Group and Shamokin Rotary.

Senate Concludes State Budget Hearings

My colleagues on the Senate Appropriations Committee and I this week finished three weeks of public hearings about the proposed 2023-24 state budget.

The governor proposed a $45.8 billion budget that would increase spending by $1.3 billion and all but deplete the state’s Rainy Day Fund in five years.

Among the key points from this week’s hearings:

Workforce issues, the state’s tax structure and the need to help businesses grow and stay in Pennsylvania drove the conversation during the Department of Community and Economic Development hearing.

The Department of Corrections/Pennsylvania Parole Board hearing covered the state’s recidivism rate and declining inmate population. The costs associated with the 750 vacancies in the Department of Corrections – which results in increased use of overtime – and efforts to protect inmates from human trafficking were also discussed.

Questions about how the Department of Human Services is handling reduced federal emergency funding were raised during the hearing. The conversation also covered the gubernatorial administration’s request for state taxpayers to backfill millions of dollars which expired from the federal government.

The Senate will use findings from the hearings to craft a responsible spending plan with the aim of enacting a final 2023-24 state budget.

You can find video and recaps of every budget hearing at

My Questions During Budget Hearings

As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I participated this week in the state budget hearings described in the previous article.

I asked a variety of questions during the hearings we held this week.

  • There has been a lack of coordination among Pennsylvania’s workforce development agencies. I asked the acting secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development about the steps that are being taken to improve workforce development.
  • During this week’s hearing with the acting secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, I asked her if the recidivism rate among inmates has decreased during the past five years in the commonwealth and how Pennsylvania compares to other states. I also asked about the impact of mental health issues on recidivism rates and if jobs can help reduce the rate.
  • The commonwealth needs to take a holistic approach to help children in need. I asked the acting secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) about the administration’s approach to this issue.
  • Rising insurance costs create concerns about a possible reduction in foster care, adoption and congretate care services. I asked the acting secretary of DHS about the implications for children and families in Pennsylvania.

I will continue to provide updates about the budget process as the Legislature works with the governor to craft a final plan.

Monthly Appropriations Update Shows Lagging Sales Tax Collections

Each month, the Senate Appropriations Committee prepares an update about the state’s financial health. The most recent report shows that sales and use tax (SUT) collections were $25 million, or 2.3%, below estimate for the month. Perhaps more importantly, March’s SUT collections were below March 2022’s collections.

SUT is the second-largest source of revenue for the General Fund and is mostly due on a “pay-as-you-go” basis throughout the year. Closely monitoring these collections for continued weakness could help signify any potential slowing of the economy.

The full update, including the monthly revenue report, is available here.

Safely Dispose of Unused Prescriptions on April 22

Conveniently remove opioids and other unused medicines from your home on Saturday, April 22, as part of the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

More than 13 tons of prescription drugs were disposed of across Pennsylvania in the Prescription Drug Take Back Day held last October.

Find a location to safely dispose of unused drugs here.

Farmers, Help PA Claim Federal Funding

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is collecting responses for the 2022 Census of Agriculture, which impacts funding priorities for numerous programs. Any farmers who have not returned their questionnaires are encouraged to respond by mail or online here.

In addition to directing the use of tax dollars, the census data also informs decisions about policy, farm and conservation programs, infrastructure and rural development, research, education and more.

State Grant Deadline is May 1 for PA College Students

The deadline for students and families to submit their applications for the 2023-24 Pennsylvania State Grant program is May 1. This deadline applies to all renewal applicants and first-time applicants who plan to enroll in a degree program or other college or university (excluding community colleges).

To apply for a Pennsylvania State Grant, applicants must first complete the 2023-24 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Applicants can access the FAFSA online at or Completing the FAFSA online saves time and reduces application and processing errors.

Students and families with questions about the FAFSA or the State Grant Program can call 800-692-7392 for personal assistance.


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