Senator Yaw E-Newsletter

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Dear Friends,

Hello! Thank you for subscribing to my E-newsletter. I am honored to serve the 23rd Senate District and look forward to working with you toward building a better future for Pennsylvania!

This E-newsletter serves to keep you updated on what is happening throughout Bradford, Lycoming, Sullivan, Tioga and Union counties and what I am doing as your state senator in Harrisburg. I hope that you will find this E-newsletter helpful, and if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.

Gene Yaw
State Senator


Click here to find the latest information on coronavirus from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Wishing You All A Happy & Healthy New Year

As we come to the end of what has been another incredibly difficult year for all of us, this final week of 2021 is an important time for reflection. It is important to remember, that no matter our background or political affiliation, this state is home to all of us, and as your State Senator, I am dedicated to serving all of you.

Ronald Reagan once said that “The person who agrees with you 80 percent of the time is a friend and an ally – not a 20 percent traitor.”  While there are times we may not agree, know that we have more in common than not.  In 2022, it’s my hope that we can look at the good things we have achieved and work together to make our region, and the entire state, a better place to live and work.

My family and I would like to wish all of you a happy and healthy 2022! May it be filled with many blessings and new adventures!

New Preliminary State Senate and House Maps Released

Proposed Senate Map (Portion)

Proposed House Map (Portion)

Every ten years, state legislative districts need to be redrawn to reflect changes in population. On December 16, Pennsylvania’s preliminary maps were released.

These districts are drawn by the bipartisan Legislative Reapportionment Commission which consists of the Republican and Democratic leaders of the state legislature and a “neutral” Chairperson. Once approved by the commission, neither the legislature nor the governor can vote to approve or reject the final maps.  The maps have been challenged in the courts in the past and will likely be challenged again this year.

The Senate map was approved by a vote of 5-0.  The House map, which is much more controversial, was approved by a 3-2 vote.

Under the proposed map, Tioga County would be added to the 23rd Senatorial District, and the western half of Susquehanna County, which I currently represent, would no longer be in the District.  Susquehanna County would be entirely represented by Senator Lisa Baker. 

The other House districts for Bradford, Lycoming, Sullivan, Susquehanna and Union counties will also see significant changes if this proposal is finalized.

From December 16th, the public has 30 days to review the maps and submit comments to the Legislative Reapportionment Commission.  After the public comment period, the Commission will issue its final maps.  Visit this link to view the full maps and share your thoughts.

Bills Passed in 2021: Pandemic Recovery

This fall, the Senate continued its work to lead Pennsylvania from pandemic to recovery by passing legislation extending waivers of an array of regulatory statutes, rules and regulations that were implemented during the COVID-19 response.

This regulatory flexibility ensured continuation of the safe delivery of health care and assistance to vulnerable citizens, permitted more remote work for state-licensed businesses, and more.

Earlier this year, the Senate approved a resolution carrying out the will of voters and terminating the pandemic emergency declaration, ending the governor’s power to close employers, limit occupancy, suspend state statutes or issue stay-at-home orders due to COVID-19. Voters got the chance to weigh in after the Senate approved putting the issue on the May primary ballot.

The Senate also approved the allocation of emergency funds for schools impacted by the pandemic, aid for rental and utility bills, and assistance to support Pennsylvania’s struggling restaurants and taverns coping with the devastation created by the pandemic and the governor’s mandated closings and restrictions.

You can find a complete rundown of key pandemic response bills here.

Comprehensive Probation Reform Approved by Senate

The Senate approved probation reform measures aimed at reducing the amount of taxpayer dollars spent on the system while better integrating probationers into society. The bills will be sent to the House of Representatives for consideration.

Senate Bill 913 provides an opportunity for early release from probation and ensures fewer individuals return to prison by offering incentives that reward positive behavior and participation in education, employment, vocational and drug treatment programming shown to reduce recidivism.

Among other goals, the measure is intended to prevent cases in which technical violations, such as a minor traffic offense, can perpetually extend the clock on an offender’s term and result in re-confinement.

The Senate also approved Senate Bill 904, to allow probation meetings to be held remotely, and Senate Bill 905, to improve the scheduling of probation and parole meetings. 

Veterans’ Trust Fund Grant Opportunities Available

The 2021-22 Veterans’ Trust Fund (VTF) is now accepting grant applications for programs and services benefiting Pennsylvania veterans.

The Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) will award up to $1 million in VTF grants to non-profit organizations, veteran service organizations and county directors of veteran affairs across the state. Grant applications must be received no later than 2PM on Wednesday, January 19, 2022.  To learn more, click here.

A Special Recognition

L to R:  Janenne Goliash, Valorie Huckabee and PA State Rep. Tina Pickett

Earlier this month, Janenne Goliash of my staff presented Valorie Huckabee with a Senate Congratulatory Senate Citation, which I sponsored, on her retirement from South Waverly Borough in Bradford County.  Valorie served the borough, as well as Athens and South Waverly Sewer authorities for over 40 years.  Thank you for your service Valorie and enjoy your well-deserved retirement!

USDA Accepting Funding Applications for Several Programs

Funding Opportunities for Rural Infrastructure

Water and Waste Disposal Loan Guarantee Program
USDA Rural Development helps private lenders provide affordable financing to qualified borrowers to improve access to clean, reliable water and waste disposal systems in rural areas. Application Deadline: Ongoing

Broadband ReConnect Program
USDA Rural Development offers loans, grants, and loan-grant combinations to facilitate broadband deployment in areas of rural America that currently do not have sufficient access to broadband. Application Deadline: Feb. 22, 2022

Telecommunications Infrastructure Loans and Loan Guarantees
USDA Rural Development  loans and loan guarantees for the construction, maintenance, improvement, and expansion of telephone service and broadband in rural areas. Application Deadline: Ongoing

Funding Opportunities for Community and Economic Development

Biofuel Producer Program
USDA Rural Development offers this NEW program to make payments to U.S. based producers of advanced, cellulosic, or conventional biofuel, biomass-based diesel or renewable fuel to offset unexpected market losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Specific requirements apply. Federal Register. Read the full stakeholder announcement here. Application Deadline: Feb. 11, 2022, to

Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP)
USDA Rural Development program which provides loans and grants to Microenterprise Development Organizations to help microenterprises startup/grow through a Rural Microloan Revolving Fund and provide training and technical assistance to microloan borrowers and micro entrepreneurs. RMAP FY22 Funding Announcement. Application Deadline: To the RD State Office no later than 4:30 p.m. (local time): Dec. 31, 2021, March 31, 2022 and June 30, 2022

Economic Mobility Corps
The Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund teams up with AmeriCorps to place service members in CDFIs to enhance their capacity to provide financial literacy, planning, budgeting and other counseling activities. Application Deadline: Jan. 5, 2022

Farm to School Grant Program  
USDA Food and Nutrition Service offers this grant to plan, establish, and/or sustain a “Farm to School” program that improves access to local foods and nutrition/agriculture resources in schools. Farm to School Grant Applicant Resources Page. Planning Tool-kit. Application Deadline: Jan. 10, 2022

Digital Humanities Advancement Grants
Institute of Museum and Library Services and The National Endowment for the Humanities
Joint agency grant to support innovative, experimental and/or computationally challenging digital projects at different stages of their lifecycles, from early start-up phases through implementation and sustainability. Application Deadline: January 14, 2022

YouthBuild Grants
U.S. Department of Labor (DOL)
DOL’s Employment and Training Administration offers funding to organizations to support apprenticeship services for education, occupational skills training and employment services for at-risk youth while performing meaningful work for their communities. Application Deadline: Jan. 21, 2022

Multi-Family Housing Non-Profit Transfer Technical Assistance Grants
USDA Rural Development offers grants to qualified nonprofits and public housing authorities to provide technical assistance to qualified borrowers and applicants to facilitate the acquisition of properties. Application Deadline: Feb. 8, 2022

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