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Senator Wayne D. Fontana

Senator Fontana speaks at the annual Memorial Service at the  Monument Parklet in Beechview on Saturday, May 25th.

Senator Fontana toured the Art Institute of Pittsburgh on May 30th and is pictured here with Art Institute of Pittsburgh President George Sebolt and Art Institute’s Chair of the Fashion Department Stephanie Taylor.

Work Study Program for Students

PHEAA PHEAA The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) is offering a State Work-Study Program (SWSP) that will provide students with an opportunity to gain career-related work experience and earn money to pay for their postsecondary education.  The program is made possible through the Pennsylvania General Assembly funding and with the cooperation of the state’s postsecondary institutions and employers. 

Many jobs qualify for SWSP and students can work up to 40 hours a week.  Both students and employers can make up to $3,600 during the summer term.  However, an employer may choose to pay a student more than the fixed award amount. 

Students who are eligible for the program must be:

  • A Pennsylvania resident
  • Enrolled in at least 6 or more credits in an educational institution, in a program of study at least two academic years in length
  • Eligible for a PA State Grant or have unmet financial need after gift aid has been applied
  • Able to benefit from career-related work experience
  • Not in default or pending default on an education loan or owe a State Grant refund

The summer work term runs from May 12, 2013 through August 17, 2013.  Student application filing deadlines for this term are June 30th.

For more information on which employers participate in the State Work-Student Program or to apply, please visit

Today’s job market is extremely competitive and employers are looking for work experience as well as a higher education.  In addition to earning money to finance their education, SWSP provides students with hands-on work experience, which will prove invaluable to their job search. 

Point State Park Fountain Returns!

Point State Park Grand Reopening!This Friday, June 7th, I’m looking forward to participating in the ceremony re-dedicating the Point State Park fountain.  The ceremony will begin at 5 p.m. and is open to the public and will be followed by a free concert at 6:30 p.m., Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros & Donora, the opening act of the 2013 Three Rivers Arts Festival.

The fountain at Point State Park was turned off over four years ago, in April 2009, so a renovation project could begin.  The restoration of the fountain included replacing pumps that were in disrepair, updating the electrical system, and replacing plaza surfaces that were cracked and broken.

The fountain project was funded through the Commonwealth and through business and private donations and was the final piece of a larger renovation to Point State Park that began in 2007.  In the last six years, the park has undergone a series of improvements including a complete renovation of the lawn area, a new irrigation system, new trees and shrubs, reconstruction of the Allegheny and Monongahela wharf areas, new lightings, and a new café.  Please visit for more information on the park’s re-opening, amenities and other information.  I hope to see you there!

Did You Know…

Did you know the fountain at Point State Park was originally dedicated by the Commonwealth on August 20, 1974 upon completion of the park?  The initial planning and construction of the park took 29 years.


Register Today for Skills for Success – Two Workshops Remain!

Skills for Success - The Fontana Series Skills for Success: The Fontana Series. Register Online! The popular Skills for Success: The Fontana Series is winding down at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) – Mt. Washington branch.  Two workshops remain with the next scheduled for this Thursday.

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) If you are currently looking for a job, or are interested in boosting your skills that will help you land a desired position, sign up today for one of these free workshops, which will serve as a great resource for you.  I was proud to partner with CLP in 2011, providing grant funding for this free series aimed at building skills and creating excellent resumes and applications that aid job seekers in achieving the positions they desire.  Whether you have already built a resume and are looking to fine-tune it, if you are starting from scratch and need help with organizing your work history, need assistance with searching for positions online, or require help in improving your interviewing skills, there is a place at one of these free workshops for you.

Rachel Masilamani and Richard Brzustowicz are again leading the Skills for Success: The Fontana Series, bringing over 10 years combined experience assisting library visitors with job hunting, online applications and resume writing.  The series features two separate workshops:  one focused on resumes and cover letters, and the other dedicated to interviews and networking.  The series also contains a career lab where attendees can work on online applications and explore library resources that can assist them in the job searching process.

Job seekers today face fierce competition in securing employment.  Take advantage of this free program, Skills for Success: The Fontana Series, and learn the ins and outs of the job searching process that will give you an advantage. Registration is required for workshops; however, walk-ins are welcome for the career labs.  To register for any of the remaining workshops please call 412-281-7141, ext. 2012 or email

CLP – Mt. Washington
315 Grandview Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15211
Thursday, June 6 – Resumes & Cover Letters
Thursday, June 13 – Interviewing & Networking
Workshops: 1-3 p.m., Career Labs: 3-5 p.m.

Summer Reading Extravaganza

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) is hosting their 13th Annual Summer Reading Extravaganza on June 9th from noon – 5 p.m. The Summer Reading Extravaganza will be held outside, on the lawn, at CLP’s main library in Oakland.  CLP offers Summer Reading Programs for children, teens, and adults and attendees will have the opportunity to register a summer reading account.  You may also pre-register for a summer reading account online by clicking here.

The Summer Reading Extravaganza will also showcase several live performances and offer exciting family-oriented activities throughout the day.  For more information, please visit           

Many community libraries throughout Allegheny County offer summer reading programs as well.  The Scott Township Library is hosting a kickoff event on June 15th for their Summer Reading Program at 6 p.m.  Their Summer Reading Club begins on June 9th and runs through August 10th.  Anyone interested in joining can register at

Other community libraries will be participating in the Allegheny County Library Association Summer Reading Club, including Green Tree Public Library and the Andrew Carnegie Free Library.  To register for the County Library Association’s Summer Reading Club, please visit or contact your community library for more information.

Storm Season Tips

Duquesne LightAs we approach summer and encounter unstable weather patterns from time to time, Duquesne Light is reminding its customers that storms can cause power outages.  While they are committed to safely restoring power as quickly as possible when outages occur, Duquesne Light is encouraging everyone to prepare a storm kit to reduce the inconvenience when an outage occurs.  If a storm is imminent, it also is a good idea to charge cell phones and tablets, as they might be the only working devices in the home should power outages occurs.

To be prepared for a potential power outage, a readily-accessible storm kit should include:

  • Flashlights and extra batteries
  • Matches and a supply of candles
  • Battery-powered radio with fresh batteries
  • Water for drinking and cooking
  • Telephone that doesn’t require electricity to operate (cordless phones will not work in a power outage)
  • Canned goods and a manual can opener
  • First-aid kit and supply of prescription medicine

Family members who rely on medical equipment such as respirators, ventilators, oxygen concentrators, suction machines, medication compressors, or other life sustaining devices should be sure to have a backup plan for power outages.  Portable generators, battery backups, or reserve oxygen tanks and determining places where they can go during an extended power outage should be considered.  Always consult a qualified electrician before using temporary electrical sources such as portable generators.

To learn more about staying safe during a power outage please visit Duquesne Light's website.

Farm Stand Project

Farm Stand ProjectCommunity Farm Stands will open to the public on June 19th for the 2013 season and remain open through November 21st.  This program, started by the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank in 1993 makes fresh produce available to neighborhoods with limited access to grocery stores.  The Farm Stands will be open to anyone interested in purchasing fresh food.  In addition to accepting cash, the Farm Stands accept Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) checks and SNAP (formerly food stamps) benefits.

The Food Bank operates 13 Farm Stands throughout the greater Pittsburgh area at selected times on Wednesdays and Thursdays and the Farm Stands are stocked with produce purchased directly from local farmers.  To view a full schedule and location of Farm Stands, please visit the Farm Stand Project website.  You may also call 412-460-3663, ext. 216 for more information.

Brookline Business Feature

PitalandThis week’s featured Brookline business is Pitaland, located at 620 Brookline Boulevard.  In operation since 1969, Pitaland offers a variety of Mediterranean foods and baked goods.  Pitaland operates a café, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, sells wholesale products and has catering services.  You can reach the store at 412-531-5040 or visit them online at

Please continue to support local merchants during the Brookline Boulevard Streetscape Project and remember:

Brookline is open for business!

Upcoming Events in Beechview

Saturdays this summer the Beechview Area Concerned Citizens will once again be hosting the Market Place Flea Market.  Vendors will be set up in the Market on Broadway IGA parking lot on Broadway Avenue from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

The 2nd annual Taste of Beechview is scheduled for June 22nd from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. in the business district along Broadway Avenue.  Farm stands, local restaurants and food trucks will be on hand for the festival of food.

The Citiparks’ Farmers’ Market in Beechview begins on June 27th.  It will run each Thursday from 3:30 – 7 p.m. in the parking lot of St. Catherine of Siena Church, located at 1810 Belasco Avenue.

Brighton Heights Citizens FederationBrighton Heights Street Fair

Pittsburgh Retail and the Brighton Heights Citizen Federation will be hosting the California Markets on California Avenue starting Saturday, June 8th and continuing on the second Saturday during the months of July, August and September.  The street fair will feature local farmers, food, drinks, crafts, art and community activities for everyone along California Avenue between Termon and Davis Avenues in Brighton Heights.  Vendors will be set up between the hours of 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.  For more information please visit

Canton AvenueFontana Fact

Canton Avenue, located in the Beechview neighborhood in the city of Pittsburgh, is the steepest officially recorded public street in the United States.  Only 1/10 of a mile in length, Canton Avenue has a grade of 37 percent meaning that for every 100 feet of roadway the elevation increases 37 feet.

Offices of State Senator Wayne D. Fontana

  Brookline District
932 Brookline Blvd.
Pittsburgh, PA 15226
Phone: 412-344-2551
Fax: 412-344-3400
543 Main Capitol
Box 203042
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Phone: 717-787-5300
Fax: 717-772-5484
Kennedy Township
Kenmawr Plz.
524 Pine Hollow Rd
Kennedy Twp, PA 15136
Phone: 412-331-1208
Fax: 412-331-2079
Beechview Satellite
1660 Broadway Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15216
Phone: 412-343-2080
Fax: 412-343-2418
Point State Park Fountain Returns! Pitaland Pre-Register Farm Stand Project Duquesne Light Brighton Heights