Welcome to "Mike's Memo," an update on what's
happening in the 48th Legislative District, the State Capitol, and the progress
of my legislative priorities. If you haven't done so already, please take a few
moments to visit my website at
www.senatorfolmer.com to learn more about issues that may affect you and
Week of May 2, 2016
PA Department of Agriculture Alerts Residents of New Invasive
An invasive pest, known as the allium leafminer or onion leafminer, new to
the United States, was discovered in Lancaster County late last year, and
has now been confirmed in Chester, Dauphin, Delaware and Lehigh Counties.
The pest infects crops such as leeks, onions, garlic, chives, shallots and
green onions. Research suggests it can be more damaging in organic,
non-commercial farms or homeowner gardens.
Department of Agriculture
Secretary Russell Redding stated, “…know that there is no risk to public
health.” The adult leafminer is about three millimeters long and appears to be a
gray or black fly with a yellow or orange patch on the top and front. The adults
appear in late winter and spring, and lay eggs on the base of stems, with larvae
mining downwards and feeding on bulbs. Damage results in softening of the plant
parts, increasing susceptibility to bacterial and fungal infections. The leaves
of infected plants appear wavy, curled and distorted with a row of white dots.
Anyone who thinks they have observed damage or life stage of the allium
leafminer should contact a plant inspector in the
regional Department of Agriculture office or
Penn State Cooperative Extension.
Do not transport any crops suspected of infection as it increases the risk of
spreading the pest. Adult leafminers can be placed in alcohol or hand sanitizer
in a leak proof container and turned into the department’s
Entomology Lab or Extension
office. Individuals can also take photos and submit to
Badbug@pa.gov, or call the Bad Bug Hotline at
PA DCNR Volunteer Fire Assistance Grants
Volunteer fire companies in rural communities with less than 10,000 residents
have until May 19 to apply for the
Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Volunteer Fire Assistance Grant. Fire company officers may apply through
DCNR’s Grant Portal. This is
a cost-share program, and funds can be used to organize, train and equip local
forces in preventing, controlling and suppressing wildfires that have the
potential to threaten human life, livestock, crops, pastures, woodlands,
orchards and farmsteads.
Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit Scholarships Awarded
Families at Lebanon Christian Academy recently received a total of $7,040 of
Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit (OSTC)
scholarships through the Bridge Educational
Foundation for the current school year. The scholarships were donated by PNC
Educational Improvement Tax Credit Scholarships Awarded
Families at The Samuel School in Harrisburg recently received $2,000 of
Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC)
scholarships through the Bridge Educational
Foundation. The scholarships were donated by LeTort Management and Trust.
Bills Signed into Law by the Governor
House Bill 12 – Act 24 – protections for victims of domestic violence in
House Bill 794 – Act 18 – enables 54 counties to increase their county hotel
House Bill 1278 – Act 19 – enables the sale of automobiles in PA with an
image display device;
House Bill 1329 – Act 20 – the Caregiver Advise, Record, Enable (CARE) Act;
House Bill 1340 – Act 21 – clarifies liens for assessments and amendment
Governor Wolf Visits Lebanon County
Governor Tom Wolf recently visited my Lebanon District Office in the Municipal
Building to meet with and thank medical cannabis advocates, and celebrate
Senate Bill 3 being signed into law as Act 16. This was truly a bipartisan
Please feel free to contact me at any time on state-related issues that are
of concern to you. I may be reached through my
website or my Lebanon or Harrisburg offices.
When contacting my office by
e-mail, mail, or telephone, please be sure to share your e-mail, telephone
number, and address so that we can follow up with you in a timely manner. Many
inquiries can be handled with a phone call or email.
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337 Main Capitol
Harrisburg, PA 17120
101 Municipal Building
400 South 8th Street
Lebanon, PA 17042
Toll Free: 1-877-222-1897