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Senator Wayne D. Fontana
Senator Fontana attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Red Balloon Early Learning Center
Senator Fontana attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Red Balloon Early Learning Center Senator Fontana attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Red Balloon Early Learning Center
Senator Fontana attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Red Balloon Early Learning Center in Scott Township on Oct. 5 to celebrate their expansion of high-quality pre-K classrooms made possible by an increased state investment of pre-K education in the 2018-19 state budget. The event included a roundtable discussion on the importance of early education and provided an opportunity for Senator Fontana to read a story to the children.

Legislation to Protect Victims of Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence MonthDomestic violence murders in Pennsylvania totaled 117 in 2017 – the highest level in a decade – with two-thirds of those cases involving gun violence.  Ten of the deaths were in Allegheny County.  The Pennsylvania Senate made great strides in protecting victims of domestic violence last week with passage of House Bill 2060 (HB 2060).  This legislation will tighten gun access for people who have been convicted of domestic violence or subject to a protection-from-abuse (PFA) order.  Pennsylvania now joins seven other states in passing similar measures taking firearms out of the hands of abusers. 

HB 2060 will require people convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence crimes to surrender their firearms within 24 hours.  Currently, these individuals have 60 days to hand over their firearms.  The bill also makes it mandatory for people who are subject to final PFA orders, which last up to three years, to relinquish their guns as well.  Before passage of this law, a final PFA could only be granted by a judge, after a hearing had taken place.   Lastly, HB 2060 closes loopholes in the law that allow people to hand over their firearms for storage to family members or friends.  Now, they will be required to surrender guns to the authorities like law enforcement, a firearm dealer, or their attorney. 

HB 2060 was widely supported by Moms Demand Action, a gun safety group formed in 2012 after the Sandy Hook school shooting, CeaseFire PA, various domestic violence groups and law enforcement agencies.  Governor Wolf is expected to sign the bill into law which will go into effect in about six months.

Although HB 2060 is not perfect legislation, it is long overdue and a step in the right direction.  The sobering statistics are a reminder that Pennsylvania’s laws needed to be rewritten to protect the innocent victims, many whose lives were taken way too soon.  Because of passage of HB 2060, abusers will no longer be able to hold onto or have easy access to their firearms and I am hopeful that this will reduce the number of incidents committed. 

Shredding Event – This Saturday!

Shredding Event October 13 With Rep. Dan Deasy and Rep. Anita Kulik, we will be hosting a shredding event on Saturday, Oct. 13 in McKees Rocks. It will be held from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. (or until the shred trucks are full) at the McKees Rocks Shopping Center, located at 114 Chartiers Avenue.

Documents will be shredded on-site by a reputable and bonded company.  Also, all papers must be loose, no binder clips or paper clips, and documents cannot be in binders.

With consumer fraud and identity theft continuing to be an issue, we are hosting these events to not only to raise awareness and promote prevention, but also to provide individuals with the opportunity to have unneeded, confidential documents destroyed free of charge.  You may bring documents that contain personal information such as social security numbers, credit card numbers and bank account numbers. 

Additionally, this year, Deputy Sheriff Joe Cirigliano will be on hand to collect any unused, unwanted, or expired medications as part of Allegheny County Sheriff Bill Mullen’s Project D.U.M.P. initiative.  This program allows residents to bring any unused, unwanted or expired medications so they can be properly disposed.

Grants and Rebates for Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently launched new grant and rebate programs for zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) charging and fueling stations to increase options for ZEV owners and encourage more people to consider these clean vehicles for their next car. The funding comes from Pennsylvania’s $118 million settlement with Volkswagen Group of America for cheating on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency emissions tests.

The grants and rebates are available through Governor Tom Wolf’s Driving PA Forward initiative. The goal of the initiative is to permanently reduce nitrogen oxide (NOx) pollution from vehicles.

Up to $3 million in grants is available for acquisition, installation, operation, and maintenance of ZEV fast-charging equipment and hydrogen fuel cell equipment through 2019. Grants are awarded as reimbursements after completed projects, with a maximum amount of $500,000. The amount awarded depends on the charging or fueling capacity of the proposed equipment. Application deadlines are 4 p.m. on January 25, July 15, and December 16, 2019. All applications from each period will be reviewed.

Another $3 million is available in rebates for Level 2 (240-volt) charging stations for 2018. Stations can be located on publicly accessible, government-owned or non-government-owned property or at workplaces or multi-unit dwellings that are not publicly accessible. Successful applicants will receive a rebate voucher that may be redeemed once project work is complete. Applicants will have 180 days to complete projects. The application period is continuous until funds are exhausted, and vouchers will be issued on a first come, first served basis.

The application period opened on September 20. Businesses, nonprofits, government agencies, and other organizations are eligible to apply. Applicants will find program guidelines, eligibility requirements, instructions, and links to the online applications at

Did You Know…

Did you know that mobile source emissions in Pennsylvania account for nearly half of NOx pollution, which can lead to ground-level ozone formation and poor air quality?  Children and elderly residents are especially susceptible to health impacts such as asthma from poor air quality.

Today is Deadline to be Registered to Vote

Vote PA Voter Registration Anyone wishing to vote in the Nov. 6 General Election must register by today.  Anyone not registered can do so online at or by clicking here. In addition to registering to vote, users can utilize the site to confirm registration status, update your registration, or locate your polling place. You may also pick up paper applications in my district offices or download a paper application at

Anyone needing an absentee ballot can download an application at or can pick one up at my district offices. The deadline to apply for an absentee ballot is October 30.

Allegheny County Seeking Election Workers

The Allegheny County Elections Division is looking for poll workers for the Nov. 6 General Election.  Anyone interested in working at a polling place must attend one paid training session and can earn between $115-$140 on Election Day. Poll workers must be registered voters in Allegheny County.  For more information on how to sign-up, please visit

Slot Machine Revenue Up

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced recently that revenue generated from slot machines in Pennsylvania increased 0.5 percent in September compared with September 2017.  Revenue from slot machines in September totaled more than $196.2 million, a 0.5 percent increase from last September’s slot machine revenue of $195.3 million.  Tax revenue from slot machines in September totaled more than $102 million.

The state’s gaming industry employs about 18,000 people and generates approximately $1.4 billion annually in tax revenue from both slot machines and table games.  For more information on gaming in Pennsylvania and to read reports from the Gaming Control Board, please visit them online at

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast CancerOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness month and I want to make everyone aware of the Pennsylvania Department of Health's HealthyWoman Program.  This program offers free clinical breast exams, mammograms, and follow-up exams for qualifying women in Pennsylvania.  Healthy Woman provides services to women between the ages of 40 and 64 who do not have health insurance, have limited health insurance, or have a gross family household income at or below 250 percent of the federal poverty guideline. To learn more about the Healthy Woman Program, please visit and type “Healthy Woman Program” into the Search tab.

The Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants.  For more information about their programs and services please visit or call 1-800-377-8828.

State of the District

On September 18, Pittsburgh Public Schools (PPS) Superintendent, Dr. Anthony Hamlet shared the 2018 State of the District report. The report, presented to stakeholders at Pittsburgh CAPA 6–12, provided an update on the District’s successes, challenges, goals, and future plans since the release of its 2017–2022 Strategic Plan: Expect Great Things. Now, Dr. Hamlet is taking the State of the District presentation on the road and is seeking your input on five key areas that will enhance the Strategic Plan. These five areas were explored through a working group that included District staff and representatives from the University of Pittsburgh, Chatham University, The Heinz Endowments and The Grable Foundation.

The five focus areas are:

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Gifted Education
  • Aligned Instructional Systems
  • New Teacher Induction
  • Job-Embedded Professional Development

Dr. Hamlet and District leadership are inviting the public to attend one of five upcoming community sessions. Light refreshments and childcare will be provided. Please respond prior to the meeting if you plan to attend by emailing or calling 412-529-3600. If you are unable to participate in person, you can view the State of District at You can also provide your input into PPS’ five key areas that will enhance the Strategic Plan at

Below is a schedule of the five upcoming community sessions:

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 6 – 8 p.m.
Children’s Museum Café 
10 Children’s Way
Allegheny Square
Pittsburgh, PA 15212

Thursday, Oct. 11, 6 – 8 p.m.            
Center of Life
161 Hazelwood Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15207

Friday, Oct. 12, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. 
Greenway Professional Dev. Ctr.
1400 Crucible Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15205

Tuesday, Oct. 16, 4 – 6 p.m.
Pittsburgh Westinghouse
1101 N. Murtland Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15208

Tuesday, Oct. 23, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Chatham University
Mellon Center, Woodland Road
Pittsburgh, PA 15232


Deborah AcklinCongratulations, Deborah Acklin!

I want to congratulate Deborah Acklin, who was elected on Sept. 26 to a three-year term on the PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) Board of Directors.  Ms. Acklin is the President & CEO of local PBS affiliate, WQED-TV.  The 27-person PBS board is responsible for governing and setting policy for PBS.  Congratulations to Deborah as she will do a terrific job in her expanded role!

Fontana Fact

Pennsylvania has a longer and more varied fall foliage season than any other state in the nation, or anywhere in the world. Only three regions of the world support deciduous forests that display fall autumn color: Eastern North America; The British Isles and parts of northwestern Europe; and Northeastern China and northern Japan. Forests in other regions are either tropical or dominated by conifers. Pennsylvania’s location between 40° and 42° North latitude and its varied topography from sea level on the coastal plain to over 3,000 feet in the Laurel Highlands supports 134 species of trees and many more shrubs and vines that contribute to the display of autumn color.

Offices of State Senator Wayne D. Fontana

Brookline District
932 Brookline Blvd.
Pittsburgh, PA 15226
Phone: 412-344-2551
Weekdays – 9 am – 5 pm
543 Main Capitol | Box 203042
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Phone: 717-787-5300
Fax: 717-772-5484
Weekdays – 8:30 am – 5 pm
Kennedy Township
Kenmawr Plaza
524 Pine Hollow Road
Kennedy Twp, PA 15136
Phone: 412-331-1208
Weekdays – 10 am – 4 pm
Beechview Satellite
1660 Broadway Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15216
By Appointment
Pittsburgh Public Schools (PPS) Deborah Acklin Biography