In this update:
Merry Christmas to You and Yours
This holiday season, I would like to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas. May you enjoy the real gifts of love, peace, and happiness.
Our community is filled with wonderful Christmastime traditions – from tree lighting ceremonies to breakfast with Santa.
One of the most unique and world-renowned ceremonies is the Glen Rock Carolers. Established by a group of English immigrants, in 1848, the group is comprised of community members who meet annually to sing in the streets of Glen Rock from midnight on Christmas Eve until dawn on Christmas day.
Earlier this year I was able to visit, learn more about the longstanding tradition, and present a Senate Citation to commemorate the 175th anniversary of the Glen Rock Carolers! I wish all the members a safe and jolly route as they take to the streets again to bring tidings of great joy through song to all!
You can learn more about the tradition and take a virtual tour of the Glen Rock Carolers Museum here.
Bill to Combat Package Thefts Signed into Law
The Senate passed legislation to combat porch pirating – the theft of packages delivered to people’s homes – and it was recently signed into law.
Senate Bill 527, now Act 41 of 2023, implements specific penalties for theft of mail, which includes a package, bag, or letter. In Pennsylvania, theft of mail is currently charged based solely on the value of the item taken.
According to Forbes, Americans spent $1.7 trillion shopping online since 2020 and nearly eight in 10 Americans have had a package stolen in 2022. Pennsylvania now joins eight other states that have already made porch pirating a felony.
New Law Gives Young Adults Strong Financial Literacy Foundation
Legislation to provide students with basic money management skills was recently signed into law. Specifically, it requires completion of a half-credit personal finance course to graduate high school.
Recent estimates calculate there are more than 350 million American-owned credit card accounts, and, on average, credit card owners have about four cards apiece. Families in the United States are approaching approximately $1 trillion dollars in credit card debt and more than $15 trillion dollars in debt overall.
Just this week it was reported that roughly 40% of all student loan borrowers who had their student loan payments put on pause by the federal government are not paying back their student loans since payments were due starting last month.
The course will give high school students the understanding they need about topics like credit and credit scores; savings and investments; college, home and auto loans; and planning for postsecondary education and retirement. Stay tuned for a future podcast episode as I will be sitting down with the prime sponsor of this legislation in the New Year. Subscribe to my podcast here.
Sharing the Holiday Spirit with PA Veterans
If you would like to support our veterans and military families this holiday season, making a monetary donation goes a long way toward helping the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs provide members, veterans and their families with essential programs and services that would not be available otherwise.
Donations can be made by mail or online. They are tax-deductible, and gifts of any amount are appreciated. Learn more about making a donation.
Celebrating the Holidays with CAM Innovation
Thank you to the team at CAM Innovation for the facility tour and invitation to participate in your annual holiday luncheon! CAM Innovation stands in the forefront of designing and assembling custom machines that reach every corner of the globe. They also happen to have a remarkable team that has an undeniable commitment to excellence and craftmanship.
Touring York College’s Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist Program
Our region continues to struggle with nurse shortages and workforce development challenges. I was pleased to see firsthand how York College of Pennsylvania is working with WellSpan Health to resolve these local challenges. I had the opportunity to meet with future certified registered nurse anesthetists who taught me how to do an epidural and intubate their simulation mannequins.
You can find more photos on my Instagram.
AptAvian – Early Detection of Avian Influenza in Jacobus
Our agriculture community continues to grapple with and share concerns about avian influenza impacting our large chicken population throughout Southern York County. Fortunately, AptAvian, an avian influenza lab, has significant technology to detect avian influenza before symptoms appear with the birds.
By utilizing detection kits, farmers can add an additional layer of protection to isolate and prevent large scale euthanasia. I appreciated the opportunity to tour this facility and see how this York-based lab is helping York County farmers each and every day.
Visiting Misericordia Nursing and Rehabilitation Center
It was a pleasure to see how Misericordia Nursing and Rehabilitation Center keeps standards high in their facility located in East York. They are currently the only 5-star CMS rated nursing home and rehabilitation center in York County and were able to share with me some of their staffing troubles brought on my state mandates.
Drive Safely During Inclement Weather
Pennsylvania has nearly 40,000 miles of roads – which translates to 96,000 snow-lane miles – that must be maintained during inclement weather so people can travel safely.
The approximately 2,200 PennDOT-owned and rented plow trucks have in-truck technology that logs and shares data in real time so the public can monitor the routes of their interstate and expressway travels on www.511PA.com.
Of course, drivers should avoid the roads until they have been cleared, if possible. Anyone who must travel is urged to use extra caution by slowing down, increasing their following distance and avoiding distractions. Read more winter driving tips here.
Celebrating Eagle Scouts
Last weekend, I had the honor of recognizing four young gentlemen for achieving the rank of Eagle Scout!
Mitchell Brown, a member of Troop 43 in Dallastown, refurbished the area around the flagpole of Southern Area Fire and Emergency Rescue – SAFER including removing vegetation and installing pavers and benches, for his Eagle Scout project.
Johnathan Ayd, Gavin Kuczynski, and Ethan Wilson of Troop 811 also achieved the rank of Eagle Scout! Johnathan built 13 benches for the Genesee Valley Outdoor Learning Center for his Eagle project. Gavin designed a wetland box for the Eden Mill Nature Center for his Eagle Project. Ethan built 16 bat boxes and 4 owl boxes for the Genesee Valley Outdoor Learning Center for his Eagle Project.
Well done, gentlemen!
100th Anniversary of the Famous Hot Weiner
This week, I had the pleasure of presenting the Famous Hot Weiner a Senate Citation celebrating its 100th anniversary! Joined by State Reps. Kate Klunk, Torren Ecker, and Dan Moul, we all congratulated the family-owned business for its third generation of leadership and being a continual a Hanover staple!
You can find more photos on my Facebook.
ICYMI: Face the State Interview
Last Sunday morning, I appeared on CBS 21’s Face the State with Joel D. Smith. You can watch our interview here (at around the 9:00 mark).
Holiday Office Hours
Please be advised that due to the holidays, below are our office hours for the next few weeks.
Friday, Dec. 22: Closed
Normal office hours resume on Tuesday, Jan. 2.
You can always access many state resources on our online office at SenatorKristin.com.
Also, PennDOT Driver License Centers will be closed on Dec. 23 and 25 for Christmas, and on Dec. 30 and Jan. 1 for New Year’s. Customers may still obtain a variety of driver and vehicle products and services online through PennDOT’s Driver and Vehicle Services website.