BUCKS COUNTY − April 21, 2022 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representative Perry Warren (D-31) announced $873,000 in state funds for Newtown Township to improve pedestrian safety and access in the Newtown Business Commons. The funding comes from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Multimodal Transportation Fund.
“State investments in our transportation keep our community connected and our economy thriving,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “This project will help the Newtown Business Commons close existing trail and sidewalk gaps and improve pedestrian access while better connecting the Business Commons to the community. My Newtown office is on the edge of the Commons, so I have seen firsthand how bustling the area is and the need for these improvements.”
“Like many of our residents I regularly walk and run in the Newtown Business Commons,” said Rep. Warren. “This project will improve pedestrian safety and expand connectivity in and between our communities. It will close existing trail and sidewalk gaps and will help residents and visitors experience all Newtown has to offer.”
The project includes construction of 0.5 mile of five-foot wide concrete sidewalks, stormwater management improvements, construction of ADA curb ramps, improved striping and signage, installation of benches, and landscaping. The Newtown Business Commons sits on 300 acres in Newtown Township, just off the Newtown Bypass, and is home to more than 200 companies, including aeronautical, biomed, biotech, engineering, medical and general office organizations. It also includes a hotel and conference center, the Newtown Post office, and restaurants.
“We are excited and thrilled to learn the township was awarded this multimodal grant from PennDOT,” said Dennis Fisher, Newtown Township Board of Supervisors Chairman. “It will not only help us provide interconnections and link neighborhoods together, but it will also provide us with sidewalks and other infrastructure improvements to revitalize our Business Commons.”
Multimodal transportation fund grants encourage economic development and ensure that a safe and reliable system of transportation is available to the residents of the commonwealth. For more information about the Multimodal Transportation Fund Grants, visit the PennDOT website.
BUCKS COUNTY – March 10, 2022 – State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and John Galloway (D-140), announced today the School District of the Borough of Morrisville will receive $1 million in supplemental funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE).
“This funding for Morrisville School District helps meet a critical need to support the district in providing quality education to all students,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “As I have said many times before, we must increase funding for Morrisville School District by fixing the state funding formula which unfairly shortchanges the district. The $1 million in supplemental funding I’ve advocated for each year helps to close the gap, but it does not meet all of the district’s needs or fix the root cause of the shortfall. I will continue to work with my House colleagues to make those changes, because every student in Morrisville deserves access to a great education.”
The supplemental funding was needed to help the District overcome budget shortfalls created, in part, by the fact that for many years Morrisville has not received its fair share in funding from the state under Pennsylvania’s basic education funding formula.
“I’ve long said the smartest investment the state can make to secure a bright economic future is in the education of our young people,” Galloway said. “The funds will make a real impact in students’ lives by improving educational programs in the Morrisville School District.”
The funding comes from the Ready to Learn Block Grant, a program to enhance learning opportunities for students and provide resources for schools to innovate at the local level.
“The School District of the Borough of Morrisville has faced and risen to the challenges of the past few years. This Ready to Learn Grant will help the district continue and expand programs and learning opportunities for students,” said Rep. Warren. “Thank you to Rep. John Galloway and Sen. Steve Santarsiero and the members of the school board for working together to make this happen for Morrisville students.”
Since 2015, Morrisville School District and its elected officials in the Pennsylvania House and Senate, have worked with the Wolf administration to provide Morrisville School District with $1 million in supplemental funding each fiscal year.
BUCKS COUNTY – April 21, 2021 – State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representative Perry Warren (D-31) announced today the award of Multimodal Transportation Fund Grants to Lower Makefield Township, Newtown Township and Yardley Borough. Lower Makefield Township will receive $353,000, Newtown Township will receive $227,000 and Yardley Borough will receive $95,000 in funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).
“These funding awards are an important opportunity to make improvements to our local transportation infrastructure while providing economic benefits to our communities,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “I enthusiastically supported all of these applications, which will hep residents enjoy the outdoors and drive traffic in our thriving boroughs.”
“Bikepath, trail, sidewalk – these CFA grants support local projects that enhance our health, our safety and our quality of life. And, these projects provide recreational opportunities and benefits to residents and businesses in all our communities,” said Rep. Warren.
Lower Makefield Township will use the funds for its Woodside Road bike path project, which will run from Makefield Highlands Golf Course to Taylorsville Road, and connect to a new path on Woodside Road. The bike path ultimately provide bicycle and pedestrian access to Scudder Falls Bridge.
“This bike path will be a welcome addition to Lower Makefield Township, providing increased access and safety for cyclists along Woodside Road,” continued Sen. Santarsiero.
The funds to Newtown Township will be used for the second phase of construction of a multi-use trail along Lower Dolington Road. The first phase of the trail was funded through the same grant program and was awarded in 2019.
Of the Newtown project, Sen. Santarsiero said, “The second phase of the multi-use trail along Lower Dolington Road will improve recreational opportunities for walkers and cyclists to safely enjoy the outdoors, benefit the health of our residents and keeping our residents safe.”
The Yardley Borough project will construct approximately 1,200 linear feet of concrete sidewalk along the northern side of North Main Street. The project will also include related stormwater and pedestrian facility improvements.
“Yardley Borough is home to many restaurants and businesses right along North Main Street. Construction of the sidewalk in this area will help customers access these shops, helping our local economy continue to grow and thrive,” said Sen. Santarsiero.
Rep Warren continued, “Senator Santarsiero and I have advocated for these grants, as they represent the state’s commitment to partner with community leaders on pedestrian and cyclist access and safety and the corresponding recreational and economic benefits to our communities.”
Multimodal transportation fund grants encourage economic development and ensure that a safe and reliable system of transportation is available to the residents of the commonwealth. For more information about the Multimodal Transportation Fund Grants, visit the DCED website.
BUCKS COUNTY – December 30, 2020 – State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representative Perry Warren (D-31) announced that Bucks County Conservation District will receive $262,558 in Growing Greener grant funds through the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). With a primary goal of improving the water quality of Neshaminy Creek, the funds will be used for a water quality improvement project at an equine facility in Newtown Township.
The project will implement a variety of water quality management best practices, including the design and installation of waterways and diversions, subsurface drainage improvements, stone lined outlets, fencing improvements, animal heavy use area improvements, rain gutter improvements, a roofed manure storage facility, and the creation of vegetated buffer areas.
“Funding for this project highlights the importance of ensuring our local farms and facilities are equipped with the necessary resources to protect our environment, specifically our waterways,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “The improvements that will be made through this project will both protect Neshaminy Creek and help raise awareness within our local equine community about the importance of conservation.”
“This grant award both helps ensure that we have safe, clean water and recognizes the critical role work of the Bucks County Conservation District in managing and directing the county’s soil, water and natural resources,” said Rep. Warren.
“The Bucks County Conservation District is excited for this opportunity to expand upon our previous efforts to improve water quality with in the Neshaminy Creek Watershed, and especially to be working on a high-density equine operation,” said Gretchen Schatschneider, District Manager for the Bucks County Conservation District.
Additionally, The Heritage Conservancy, located in Doylestown, will receive $26,563 for its Bellwood Preserve Riparian Restoration project, outside of the 10th senate district in Newportville.
The Growing Greener grant program through DEP is used to fund watershed restoration and protection, abandoned mine reclamation and abandoned oil and gas well plugging projects. For more information about Growing Greener grants, visit the DEP website.
BUCKS COUNTY – October 23, 2020 – State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and John Galloway (D-140), announced today that Morrisville Borough School District will receive $500,000 in supplemental funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE). In 2019, Senator Santarsiero and Representatives Warren and Galloway were able to secure an agreement by the state to provide the District with a total of $1 million in supplemental funding. The supplemental funding was needed to help the District overcome budget shortfalls created, in part, by the fact that for many years Morrisville has not received its fair share in funding from the state under Pennsylvania’s basic education funding formula. The first $500,000 of that money was released in 2019. This payment represents the remainder of the supplemental funding under that agreement.
“This funding for Morrisville School District helps meet a critical need to support the district in providing quality education to all students,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “These funds will ensure the district can continue to meet the needs of its students and faculty, as it works to protect the health and safety of its teachers and students amid the ongoing pandemic. As I have said many times before, I am a strong advocate for increasing funding for Morrisville School District by fixing the state funding formula which unfairly shortchanges the district. I will continue to work with my House colleagues to make those changes, because every student in Morrisville deserves access to a great education.”
“This supplemental funding is critical to maintaining Morrisville School’s staffing and services,” said Rep. Warren. “Superintendent Jason Harris and Board President Damon Miller have worked diligently with us to ensure that Morrisville students continue to receive a great education. This funding is more than a bandage, but we still need a comprehensive adjustment of state funding for the Morrisville School District, and Sen. Santarsiero, Rep. Galloway and I continue to work with the Governor’s office and PDE to achieve appropriate funding for Morrisville schools.”
“This grant money will provide critical aid to the Morrisville School District as it faces increased needs arising from the Covid-19 pandemic,” Galloway said. “At a time when both teachers and students are struggling to adapt to the challenges posed by the pandemic, this funding will provide greater access to the resources needed for both educators and students to succeed. We are all committed to providing Morrisville children with the best education possible.”
Since 2015, Morrisville School District and its elected officials in the Pennsylvania House and Senate, have been working with the administration of Governor Wolf to provide Morrisville’s schools with $1 million in supplemental funding each fiscal year to help close the gap. In May, Sen. Santarsiero and Reps. Warren and Galloway sent a letter to Governor Wolf requesting supplemental funding for Morrisville School District, while requesting a review of the funding formula used to allocate state funds to the district.
BUCKS COUNTY – September 24, 2020 – State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and Wendy Ullman (D-143) announced $320,000 in Community Conservation Partnership Program grants through the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR).
Newtown Borough will receive $70,000 for the development of the Bird-in-Hand property.
“The funds going to Newtown Borough to develop the Bird-in-Hand property will benefit the community by increasing accessibility to the area through the creation of pedestrian walkways, while also making improvements to the grounds that will highlight the historic home and lot,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “The partnership between the borough and the Commonwealth to preserve this property shows the commitment of both Newtown Borough and the state to developing outdoor community spaces for all to enjoy.”
“This historic property is a Newtown treasure,” said Rep. Warren. “Borough Council creatively structured a plan to purchase, protect and preserve the Bird-in-Hand lot, and this state grant helps the Borough improve this historic property for the benefit and enjoyment of our residents and for generations to come.”
Doylestown Borough will also receive $250,000 for the development of the Broad Street Gateway Park.
“Last week I had the honor of participating in the groundbreaking for the new municipal complex in Doylestown, which includes the Broad Street Gateway Park development across the street,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “These additional state grant funds for the development of the park is a celebration of open space that will create a beautiful community gathering place in the heart of Doylestown Borough.”
“Parks are centers of community-spaces where people from all walks of life can enjoy nature and each other’s company,” Rep. Ullman said. “By supporting the development of the Broad Street Gateway Park, this grant money will help transform an unsightly brownfield – the former PennDOT maintenance yard — into a welcoming, green oasis for generations to come.”
For more information on the Community Conservation Partnerships Program Grants, visit the DCNR website.
BUCKS COUNTY – August 17, 2020 – State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10), along with Representatives Perry Warren (D-31), John Galloway (D-140), and Wendy Ullman (D-143) announced $1,763,403 in Small Water & Sewer Program grant funds through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), are coming to seven local municipalities.
The awards to local municipalities under the grant are:
- Doylestown Borough will receive $138,169 for its North Main Street Water Main Project,
- Bedminster Municipal Authority will receive $319,136 for its Stonebridge- Pennland Farms Water Systems Interconnection Project,
- Doylestown Township Municipal Authority will receive $157,065 for its South Water Tank Rehabilitation project,
- Falls Township Authority will receive $452,834, with $215,036 going to its Penn Village Water Main Lining project, and $400,000 going to its Sanitary Sewer Inflow and Infiltration Reduction project,
- Morrisville Borough will receive $122,008 for its Melvin Avenue Basin Improvements Phase II project,
- Perkasie Regional Authority will receive $200,000 for its Ridge Road Sewer Extension project, and
- Yardley Borough will receive $211,989 for its North Main Street Sidewalk Drainage Phase II project.
“These projects will help make critical improvements to our municipal water and sewer systems, strengthening our infrastructure to protect our environment and maintain quality drinking water for our community,” said Sen. Santarsiero.
“The Morrisville grant will enhance the delivery of water to our residents and business by meeting water quality best management practices, and with the landscaping it will be more aesthetically pleasing. It is a win-win for Morrisville,” said Rep. Warren. “The Yardley Borough grant for Phase II of the North Main Street sidewalk drainage will enhance safety and accessibility for Yardley and northern Lower Makefield residents and will be an economic boost to downtown businesses and the entire community. Yardley Borough Council has been working on this project for a long time, and it is great that the state is supporting the project.”
“Working in partnership with local municipalities to support key infrastructure projects is more important than ever to make sure essential services are provided to our citizens,” said Rep. Ullman. “Securing state support ultimately lessens the cost impact on our municipalities, and thus on local taxpayers.”
“These funds for both Falls Township and Morrisville will help make important improvements to our local water and sewer systems,” said Rep. Galloway. “I am glad to see projects in my district, and across the county, receiving funding for these much-needed updates.”
Small water and sewer grants are awarded to fund projects that assist with the construction, improvement, expansion, or rehabilitation or repair of a water supply system, sanitary sewer system, storm sewer system, or flood control projects.
For more information on DCED’s Small Water and Sewer program, visit the DCED website.
MORRISVILLE − May 1, 2020 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and John Galloway (D-140) held a virtual press conference today to discuss the critical need for funding to support Morrisville School District. They were joined by representatives of Morrisville School District and Morrisville Borough.
The legislators called on Governor Tom Wolf and the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) to review demographic data that has been used to calculate the state funding Morrisville School District receives. The shortfall in funding stems from an unintended consequence in the way that both the existing and new funding formulas are calculated for Morrisville (a conclusion supported by the fact that even under the new, so-called fair funding formula, Morrisville actually receives less support from the state than under the older allocation).
For the 2020-21 fiscal year, the formulas are based in part on a projected 5-year median household income in Morrisville of nearly $75,000, well above some of the most challenged districts in the state. But that number is not accurate. It is not limited to the income of people living within the municipal – and, therefore, school district – boundaries of Morrisville Borough. Instead, it includes large numbers of residents in nearby Lower Makefield Township and Yardley Borough, who share the 19067 zip code with their neighbors in Morrisville. When looking only at Morrisville residents, the median household income drops to $53,000. As a consequence of this issue, Morrisville School District has been unfairly underfunded for a number of years.
“Despite the school board’s prudent management of the district finances, Morrisville School District continues to suffer blatant inequity due to a calculation error in the funding formula. Through no fault of their own, the students, teachers, and support staff of Morrisville are forced to bear this burden,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “There is a constitutional obligation to provide ‘a thorough and efficient system of public education’ to all of Pennsylvania’s children, and even during our current public health crisis, this remains one of our most important responsibilities and is why we’re requesting this critical assistance.”
“The funding formula deals with 500 different school districts in an incredibly diverse state,” said Rep. Galloway. “There are going to be anomalies, and one of those was Morrisville.”
Since 2015, Morrisville School District and its elected officials in the Pennsylvania House and Senate, have been working with the administration of Governor Wolf to provide Morrisville’s schools with $1 million in supplemental funding each fiscal year to help close the gap. However, even with this supplemental funding, it is increasingly difficult for the district to survive. For example, in the 2020-21 school year, the district is faced with a budget deficit of close to $1.2 million.
“I’ve spent a lot of time in the Morrisville school district, reading to the kids at Grandview, walking the halls of the high school with Superintendent Harris and Board President Miller, attending football games and other events, and it is a special place,” said Rep. Warren. “The $1 million extra funding is more than a band-aid, it’s a bandage, but it is and always has been a short-term fix. We need a real long term funding solution. Our kids deserve to continue to have the great educational and co-curricular opportunities that we, the board, administration, teachers and staff, and the community have worked so hard to provide for them.”
“Morrisville is more than just numbers,” said Morrisville Superintendent Jason Harris. “In spite of the volatility in the costs to educate students and meet mandated costs, our Board, staff and administration have supported programs which have yielded some remarkable results… School budgets are a constant source of strain and stress on any district. However, in Morrisville, with its limited tax base and other streams of revenue, spikes in Special Education costs put an even greater strain on an already strapped resource. The District often relies on the use of grants to support programs.”
“Despite the efforts Morrisville School District has made regarding educational opportunities and facility upgrades, the continuation and sustainability of those efforts are in jeopardy,” said Damon Miller, President of the School Board of the Borough of Morrisville. “The issues and effects of these trends the Morrisville School District faces are not ones that will stop at the school district borders. As Morrisville declines, so too will neighboring communities as those effects bleed into our surrounding townships. We are asking for the state to step in and provide assistance in not only helping the students of Morrisville receive an equitable education as their peers in surrounding districts, but also the Morrisville community as a whole.”
“Even though the district and the borough government are separate entities, we are attached at the hip,” said Ted Parker, Morrisville Borough Council President. “The district has not been receiving what it should from the state.”
The funding issue has further been exacerbated during the Coronavirus pandemic, as distance learning replaced traditional classroom learning. Nearly 600 of the over 800 students in Morrisville School District currently do not have the resources to participate in distance learning. Morrisville School District applied for the Continuity of Education and Equity Grant (CEEG) to help fund the purchase of Chromebooks and hotspots, but the application was denied, likely in part due to the same flaw in calculating the level of need in Morrisville described above.
In light of this discrepancy, Sen. Santarsiero, Reps. Warren and Galloway, and representatives from Morrisville Borough and Morrisville School District joined together in requesting assistance from the Office of the Governor, that an amount equivalent to what the district would have received under the CEEG program be granted to the school district as soon as possible so that Morrisville can purchase the needed equipment in time to cover the remainder of this school year.
The full text of the letter sent to Governor Wolf is available here.
The full recording of the press conference is available here.
BUCKS COUNTY − May 1, 2020 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) along with State Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and John Galloway (D-140) sent the following letter to Governor Wolf to request an increase in funding for Morrisville School District:
LOWER MAKEFIELD — January 17, 2020 — State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) was joined by state Representative Perry Warren (D-31) and Jim McCaffrey, of McCaffrey Food Markets, today at DeLorenzo’s Tomato Pies in Yardley, Pennsylvania for a press conference on the referendum that is expected to be on the ballot during the next election in Lower Makefield Township (LMT). This ballot referendum would give residents the opportunity to vote to allow the sale of alcoholic beverages in Lower Makefield Township, which currently is the only municipality in Bucks County that operates as a dry municipality.
In June of last year, Sen. Santarsiero had the state liquor code amended to reduce the number of signatures required to get a referendum on the ballot to a flat 500.
“This is about giving the people of Lower Makefield a choice,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “Whether the referendum passes or not, that decision should be made by the residents. That’s what this referendum is all about.”
The local referendum process is governed by the Bucks County Board of Elections (BOE) and requires a minimum of 500 resident signatures to be collected during a petition period, which will take place between January 28 and February 18, 2020. The petitions will then be filed and reviewed by the BOE’s solicitor and the BOE must vote to approve the ballot question before it appears on the ballot.
Jim McCaffrey, along with other restaurant owners in the area, have launched an awareness campaign to promote the referendum. More information on this campaign can be found at www.YourTownYourChoice.com.
To view the full press conference, click here.
Sen. Steve Santarsiero represents the 10th Senatorial District, which includes: Bedminster Township, Buckingham Township, Chalfont, Doylestown, Doylestown Township, Dublin, East Rockhill Township, Falls Township, Haycock Township, Hilltown Township, Lower Makefield Township, Morrisville, New Britain, New Britain Township, New Hope, Newtown, Newtown Township, Perkasie, Plumstead Township, Sellersville, Silverdale, Solebury Township, Telford, Tullytown, Upper Makefield Township, West Rockhill Township, and Yardley.
HARRISBURG – October 18, 2019 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and John Galloway (D-140) announced nearly $60,000 in grants will be awarded to schools in their districts through the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s (PDE) Office for Safe Schools.
The PDE announced $7.2 million in Safe Schools Targeted Grants, awarded to schools to prevent and reduce violent incidents. The grants are used to purchase safety and security-related equipment, and grants can be used to fund training for staff and police officers.
Bucks County Technical High School will receive $25,000 for the purchase of equipment, while Council Rock School District and Pennsbury School District will receive $19,783 and $19,900, respectively, for school safety programs.
“With these grants, our children have a greater opportunity to learn and grow in a safe educational environment,” Sen. Santarsiero said. “Improving school safety has been, and will continue to be, a constant focus for me. No child, teacher, or staff member should have to go to school in fear.”
“Investment in schools is an investment in our future,” Rep. Warren said. “Anything we can do to protect our children and improve the safety of our schools remains one of my top priorities. These grants attempt to eliminate incidents before they happen, through training and the purchase of new equipment.”
“These funds will ensure that the students in our community can thrive in the safest setting possible,” Rep. Galloway said. “I’m confident that this will aid in creating not only a safer, but more productive learning environment.
The announcement came on the same day that Morrisville Free Library was awarded a $52,500 Keystone Grant to replace the slate roof on its 108-year-old building.
PDE’s Office for Safe Schools offers four types of safety grants: equipment grants of up to $25,000; program grants of up to $20,000; School Police Officer grants of up to $40,000; and School Resource Officer grants of up to $60,0000. Each grant is aimed to assist schools in reducing disciplinary actions and promoting an environment of greater productivity, safety and learning.
You can learn more about grants awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Office for Safe Schools by visiting the department’s webpage.
HARRISBURG − October 17, 2019 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) and state Representatives Perry Warren (D-31) and John Galloway (D-140) announced the award of a Keystone Grant totaling $52,500 to Morrisville Free Library for the replacement of the slate roof of the library’s 108-year-old building.
“With this generous grant, Morrisville Free Library can continue to provide invaluable resources to our community,” Sen. Santarsiero said. “For decades, Morrisville Free Library has taught our children the joy of reading, provided students with the tools necessary to learn, and has hosted countless events for children, seniors, businesses, and community groups.”
“Libraries in our community offer an invaluable service as free learning centers to preschoolers, students, adults and seniors,” said Rep. Warren. “In other words, everyone in the community benefits from a strong library system. We’re fortunate enough to live in a community where we have one, a place where the only thing you need to pursue knowledge is a desire to learn and a free library card.”
“I’m glad to see the Morrisville Free Library will be receiving some much-needed upgrades,” said Rep. Galloway. “This has been a long-standing establishment in our community, and I’m confident that these funds will ensure its continued prosperity as a place to learn and gather.”
Morrisville Free Library is one of 19 public libraries across 12 counties in Pennsylvania that have been awarded $3.25 million in Keystone Grants to use toward improving physical facilities. Keystone Grants are funded through the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund. The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries, Bureau of Library Development, administers the public library portion of this program. Grants of up to $750,000 may be used for planning, acquisition, construction and rehabilitation of public libraries, and must be matched dollar-for-dollar.
For more information on Keystone Library Grants and the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund, please visit the State Library of Pennsylvania’s website.
BUCKS COUNTY − July 12, 2019 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10), and state Representative Perry Warren (D-31) held a press conference near the Scudder Falls Bridge interchange in Lower Makefield to announce SB 451 and HB 329, legislation that would alleviate some of the burden placed on Pennsylvania-based drivers and businesses whose tolls are used to build roads and bridges across the Commonwealth.
SB 451 and HB 329 would provide a tax credit to cover 50 percent of a taxpayer’s toll-related expenses for the taxable year, up to $500. Tolls incurred while traveling on the Pennsylvania Turnpike, as well as all toll bridges operating under the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission or the Delaware River Port Authority, would be eligible for the tax credit.
“Commuters, families, and businesses across southeastern Pennsylvania, who regularly pay tolls to maintain our roads and bridges, deserve the tax relief outlined in SB 451. With this tax credit, local commerce can thrive and expand,” Sen. Santarsiero said.
This legislation is the latest in a series of infrastructure improvements that Santarsiero has fought for over the years. During his time as township supervisor in Lower Makefield, Santarsiero advocated for a sound barrier along I-95, and as state representative in the 31st district, he fought the repeal of a longstanding reciprocity agreement between Pennsylvania and New Jersey on income taxes.
In the House, Rep. Warren introduced HB 329, which mirrors SB 451.
“This legislation will reduce the cost of commuting, reduce business costs, and will spur economic development,” Rep. Warren said. “Through a commuter tax credit, we are looking to benefit our community and build our economy.
The full press conference can be viewed here. Click the links provided to view SB 451 and HB 329. A briefing on both bills is also included as an attachment.
BUCKS COUNTY – March 28, 2019 – The Morrisville Fire Company was awarded $200,000 in state grant funding for a new fire engine, according to State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10), State Representative Perry Warren (D-31), and State Representative John Galloway (D-140). The new engine is a 2020 Pierce Arrow XT heavy duty rescue pumper with a 500-gallon tank and 2000 gpm pump.
“The service that Morrisville firefighters provide to the community is invaluable and will greatly benefit from the addition of this new engine,” Sen. Santarsiero said. “Ensuring local fire companies are equipped to handle the emergencies they face on a daily basis will continue to be a top priority of mine.”
“With this loan, the Morrisville Fire Company can purchase a new fire truck that is as top-notch as the men and women who volunteer for it,” Rep. Warren said.
“This engine will be a great addition to the Morrisville Fire Company and reflects my commitment to funding local emergency services,” Rep. Galloway said.
The Morrisville Fire Company applied for the grant through the Volunteer Loan Assistance Program (VLAP) and is administered by the Office of the State Fire Commissioner.
NEWTOWN, BUCKS COUNTY – February 15, 2019 – On the one year anniversary of the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10), State Representative Perry Warren (D-31), and former State Representative Helen Tai joined students and gun safety advocates in front of Council Rock North High School to call for the passage of safe storage firearm legislation.
Senator Santarsiero is the primary sponsor of Senate Bills 137 and 138. SB 137 requires the safe storage of a firearm when the gun owner resides with a person who may not lawfully possess a firearm; SB 138 requires safe storage regardless of who resides with the gun owner.
Santarsiero, Warren’s predecessor in the State House, has been a leading advocate for gun violence prevention legislation since 2012 when, shortly after the tragedy in Newtown, CT, he offered legislation to require background checks on all gun purchases. He began Thursday’s press conference by noting that the fight to end gun violence has been a long one.
“I know this has been a long and often frustrating road for those of us who have been working on this issue for years now. But as we stand here today on the first anniversary of the shooting in Parkland, Florida, we must rededicate ourselves to this task. There have been 377 mass shootings since then, 20 alone here in Pennsylvania, including the murders at Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. Enough is enough,” he said.
In the House, Rep. Warren introduced HB 532, which mirrors Santarsiero’s SB 137. Rep. Briggs (D-149) is the primary sponsor of HB 525, requiring the safe storage of firearms in homes where children may be present.
“It’s time to stop this culture of gun violence,” Rep. Warren said. “It’s time to take concrete steps to keep guns out of the hands of people who will do with them harm. It’s time to stand up for our schools, for our children, for our families and communities, and I’m proud to be here today with my colleague to do this.”
Former Rep. Helen Tai, who championed safe storage legislation while in the House last year, spoke about the widespread support for gun safety legislation and the local impact not of not having these laws in place.
“The overwhelming number of Americans and Pennsylvanians want common sense gun safety laws passed,” former Rep. Tai said. “These laws would prevent countless children from accidental deaths or shootings and would’ve prevented Cosmo DiNardo, who was legally banned from possessing a firearm, from using his mother’s gun to murder four young men.”
Samantha Duckworth, a senior at Council Rock High School North, talked about her experiences as a young student growing up around the constant school shootings across the country.
“It’s scary to go to school,” Duckworth said. “It’s scary to live with the fear that you might get gunned down one day in your classroom. A year ago at Parkland, something changed for a lot of students. We saw ourselves in the faces of the students who died that day. Marjory Stoneman Douglas School is a lot like Council Rock North. The teachers there are a lot like our teachers, the students there are a lot like our students, and the classes they have there are a lot like our classes, so that day for a lot of us we realized this really can happen to us.”
A statement by Shira Goodman, executive director of CeasefirePA, praised the Bucks County lawmakers for standing up for the safety of fellow citizens.
“CeaseFirePA is pleased that Sen. Santarsiero, Rep. Briggs, and Rep. Warren are focusing on safe storage of firearms,” Goodman stated. “The absence of such laws in PA makes us less safe. There are many homes where law abiding gun owners live with people who are not legally allowed to possess firearms — because of their age, criminal history or another prohibiting factor. It is the responsibility of the gun owner to prevent access to those people — for their own safety and for public safety. Safe storage laws educate and motivate good practices, prevent suicides and homicides, and keep us safer. Pa should join other states that have such laws.”
Santarsiero ended the event with a charge and a challenge. “Before the torch is passed to the generation represented by these students here with us today, let those of us who currently have the power to pass legislation and affect change, act. We need to protect everyone in our community,” he added. “Requiring safe storage is simple, reasonable and will save lives. Let’s make it the law of this commonwealth. Let’s pass this legislation.”
The 10th Senatorial District includes: Bedminster Township, Buckingham Township, Chalfont, Doylestown, Doylestown Township, Dublin, East Rockhill Township, Falls Township, Haycock Township, Hilltown Township, Lower Makefield Township, Morrisville, New Britain, New Britain Township, New Hope, Newtown, Newtown Township, Perkasie, Plumstead Township, Sellersville, Silverdale, Solebury Township, Telford, Tullytown, Upper Makefield Township, West Rockhill Township, and Yardley.
The 31st Legislative District includes: Lower Makefield Township, Morrisville, Newtown, Newtown Township, and Yardley.
Sen. Santarsiero has district offices in Doylestown and Newtown and can be reached via email at SenatorSantarsiero@pasenate.com. Visit the district website at www.senatorstevesantarsiero.com.
Rep. Warren has a district office in Yardley and can be reached via email at RepWarren@pahouse.com. Visit the district website at www.pahouse.com/Warren.