Capitol Roundup from Rep. Mike Peifer
9/21/2018
Schools Urged to Apply for Safety Grants
The new School Safety and Security Grant Program – established as part of the 2018-19 state budget package – is now open for applications. Schools interested in applying for grants to help with safety equipment and resources should submit their applications by Oct. 12 to the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, which is administering the new program. A total of $52 million in grant funding will be provided to school districts, intermediate units, area vocational-technical schools, charter schools and private residential rehabilitative institutions for a wide variety of projects to improve school safety. The grants can be used for any of 22 specific school safety initiatives listed in the legislation, including such things as hiring school security officers, purchasing security-related technology, completing safety and security assessments, implementing violence prevention curricula, offering counseling services for students, and other programs and services to protect students. The grant money is to be distributed geographically, with no school district receiving more than 10 percent (but eligible for at least $25,000) of the available funds. The money is expected to be distributed by March 2019. To apply or for more information, visit the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency’s website here.

Grants Available for Job Training
Local workforce development boards can apply for $2.5 million in Business-Education Partnership (BEP) grants that will connect businesses and school districts in an effort to expand career opportunities across Pennsylvania. The funding is available through the Department of Labor and Industry to local workforce development boards, which are regional entities that direct federal, state and local funding to workforce development programs in their areas. These partnerships connect schools, employers, parents and students to provide career-related experiences and opportunities through soft-skills development, internships, workplace shadowing and career mentoring, all with the goal of engaging more students in the need for technical skills required by employers. Additional details and the grant application can be found at dli.pa.gov. The deadline to apply is Oct. 31.

Farm Conservation Tax Credits Available
To help farmers implement best management practices (BMPs) to prevent water pollution or purchase conservation equipment, $10 million in tax credits is available through the 2018-19 Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) program. REAP is designed for agricultural producers who install BMPs or make equipment purchases that reduce nutrient and sediment runoff, which improves Pennsylvania’s streams and watersheds. The program is administered by Pennsylvania’s State Conservation Commission. Farmers may receive tax credits of up to $150,000 per agricultural operation for 50 percent to 75 percent of a project’s cost. For projects that include the proposed purchase of equipment, the equipment must be delivered by June 30, 2019. For projects involving the implementation of structural BMPs, all BMPs and BMP components must be completed by June 30, 2020, to be eligible. REAP applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, visit agriculture.pa.gov.

PA Treasury Holding Military Decorations
The Pennsylvania Treasury announced the launch of a new state website dedicated to reuniting military decorations that have been reported as unclaimed property with their rightful owners. The new search function allows users to search their names, or the name of a loved one, to see if Treasury is holding a military decoration as unclaimed property. In addition, users can look through a photo gallery featuring some of the decorations that are in the unclaimed property vault, as well as medals that have been returned to their rightful owners. Military decorations are often reported to Treasury as contents held in a safe deposit box that has gone unclaimed or abandoned. Since 2017, Treasury has returned 58 service decorations, some of which have been in Treasury’s custody for decades, including Purple Hearts, to their rightful owners. Treasury continues to search for the owners of over 500 unclaimed military awards. To search for unclaimed military decorations, visit patreasury.gov.




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