Open Seat 48th E-Newsletter

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September 9, 2019 

Assistance of Homeless Children & Youth Hurricane Education Recovery Grants

Recipients of the Assistance for Homeless Children & Youth Hurricane Education Recovery grants have been announced.  The purpose of this federally funded program is to provide financial assistance to local educational agencies serving homeless children and youth displaced by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, or the 2017 California wildfires.  Funding is awarded to local educational agencies based on demonstrated need and the number of displaced children.  In the 48th Senatorial District, Central Dauphin School District is serving 44 displaced students and will receive $15,742, and Lebanon School District is serving 231 displaced students and will receive $82,648. 

Are You ReadyPA?

Snow.  Floods.  Extreme heat.  With every season, there is always something to prepare for.  The PA Emergency Management Agency wants you to be “Prepared, Not Scared.  Be Ready for Disasters.” 

 Emergencies happen unexpectedly.  Preparing goes beyond making a kit and building a plan.  Making time to learn lifesaving skills, such as CPR and first aid, checking insurance policies and coverage for hazards are also essential.

Learn easy ways to be ready with the free “30 Days/30 Waysprogram.  By signing up, you will receive weekly emails including tips and tools to help be ready in emergencies.  To sign up:

Newly Operational Medical Marijuana Grower/Processor

I have been advised the Office of Medical Marijuana at the PA Department of Health has deemed Grower/Processor Whole Plants, LLC located at 113 North 8th Avenue, Lebanon County as operational.  They are the 19th operational Grower/Processor in the commonwealth.

Welcome That’s How We Roll, LLC, to York County!

That’s How We Roll, LLC, a baked dessert snacks manufacturer, will expand its operations to Springettsbury, York County, creating 50 new jobs.  The company’s expansion into York County will establish a new baked snack manufacturing operation, increase production capacity and product offerings, and meet current and future consumer demand.  The total project will cost $4.4 million and will include the purchase of new equipment and building renovations.

That’s How We Roll received a funding proposal from the PA Department of Community and Economic Development for a $200,000 PA First grant and $54,000 in funding for job training through the WEDnet PA program.  The project was coordinated by the Governor’s Action Team, a group of economic development professionals who work with businesses that are considering locating or expanding in PA.

That’s How We Roll manufactures baked snacks using simple, wholesome ingredients, free of GMO, corn syrups, RBGH, and artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.  The company’s mission is to make the world healthier, tastier and a little more fun.

DEP Issues Sunoco Penalties for Mariner East 2 Pipeline Construction Violations

The PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced it has issued two penalties to Sunoco Pipeline, LP totaling more than $313,000 for violations resulting from construction activities on the Mariner East 2 pipeline project.  DEP issued two Consent Assessments of Civil Penalty (CACP) to Sunoco for violations of the Clean Streams Law and Dam Safety and Encroachment Act that occurred in 2018 during construction in 10 counties.

Specifically, horizontal drilling activities resulted in unauthorized discharges of drilling fluids consisting of bentonite clay and water, also known as inadvertent returns, to the following surface waters: 

  • East Branch Conestoga River in Caernarvon Township, Berks County;
  • Two wetlands in Blair and Frankstown Townships, Blair County;
  • Unnamed tributaries to Stewart Run, Hinckston Run and two wetlands in Cambria County;
  • A wetland in Middlesex Township, Cumberland County;
  • Chester Creek and a wetland in Middletown Township, Delaware County;
  • A wetland and Aughwick in Shirley Township, Huntingdon County;
  • Snitz Creek in West Cornwall Township, Lebanon County;
  • A wetland in Toboyne Township, Perry County;
  • An unnamed tributary to Peters Creek in Nottingham Township and an unnamed tributary to Little Chartiers Creek in North Strabane Township in Washington County, and;
  • An unnamed tributary to Sewickley Creek in Sewickley Township, Westmoreland County.

As part of the agreement, DEP assessed a civil penalty of $240,840 for the violations, which Sunoco agreed to pay to the commonwealth and the county conservation districts.  DEP also issued a CACP to Sunoco for violation of its permits and the Clean Streams Law that occurred in 2017 during construction activities that resulted in accelerated erosion and sedimentation at sites in Lower Frankford, Upper Frankford, Lower Mifflin and North Middleton Townships, Cumberland County.

Specifically, Sunoco failed to implement effective best management practices to minimize erosion and sedimentation; failed to temporarily stabilize all areas of the sites upon completion of earth disturbance activities; created a potential for sediment pollution to Rock Run; conducted earth disturbance activities that violated its erosion and sediment control permit, and; caused or allowed accelerated erosion that resulted sedimentation from earth disturbance activities to enter unnamed tributaries to Doubling Gap Creek, Conodoquinet Creek and Rock Run.

As part of the agreement, DEP assessed a civil penalty of $78,621 for the violations, which Sunoco has agreed to pay to the commonwealth and the Cumberland County Conservation District.

State agencies provided unprecedented oversight over the Mariner East Project, issuing more than 80 violations and levying more than $13 million in penalties.  DEP has also implemented significant new processes as a result of the experience gained, including:

  • Improved coordination with the PA Utilities Commission and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission;
  • Improved internal coordination and implementation through the establishment of a Regional Permitting Coordination Office, and;
  • The development of new permit conditions and policy guidelines for future pipeline development projects, including more than 100 special permit conditions.

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