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I have developed this e-newsletter to keep residents of the 26th District updated on state and local issues. It is a more timely and less costly way to keep constituents informed than traditional mailers, and I hope you find it useful. If you know of someone else who might want to receive it, please feel free to forward this email. If you'd prefer to not receive the e-newsletter, just click the unsubscribe button at the bottom of the page.
511 PA Travel Hotline, Preparation Can Help Motorists Cope with Winter Road Conditions
The new 511 travel hotline and website, as well as time-tested preparation, can help motorists safely cope with road conditions this winter.
Drivers can now get a little extra help when planning snowy commutes by calling 511 or visiting www.511PA.com. 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, average traffic speeds on urban interstates and access to more than 440 traffic cameras. 511 provides simple to use, color-coded winter road conditions for all interstates and other routes covered in the 511 reporting network.
PennDOT offers the following winter driving tips:
Along with 511PA, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation introduced a special winter page on the department's website, www.dot.state.pa.us/winter. Two of the main features cover preparing your vehicle for winter and how PennDOT battles winter storms.
2010 PA Farm Show Arrives Underway
Billed as the largest indoor agricultural event in the country, the 2010 Pennsylvania Farm Show (PDF) runs until this Saturday, January 16th at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center on North Cameron Street in Harrisburg.
More than 400,000 people are expected to visit the 94th Farm Show. Visitors will have the chance to see nearly 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive exhibits, and 270 commercial exhibitors. Exhibitors can hope to tap into more than $561,000 in prize money. Look for the best in youth livestock shows, cooking demonstrations, educational displays, celebrity contests, and much more. See "Just for Kids" activities at special learning stations.
Visitors will find the Farm Show Food Court located in the Expo Hall and Main Hall (PDF) of the Complex filled with everything from apple cider and beehive products to grilled portabella mushrooms and deep-fried mozzarella sticks to pork barbeque sandwiches and homemade vegetable soup.
the daily schedule to ensure you don't miss your favorite events. If you
are considering staying overnight in the Harrisburg area, consult the Farm Show
Lodging, Restaurants, and Attractions page.
Women, Infants and Children Nutrition Program Opens Up to New, Healthier Food Choices
Pregnant women, new mothers, infants, and children under the age of five served by Pennsylvania's Women, Infants and Children, or the WIC program will see significant improvements in the nutritional value of new offerings, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PDH).
New guidelines are intended to increase the quality and quantity of foods to help support the nutritional needs of breastfeeding mothers, infants, and children up to five years of age who meet the program's income guidelines. The changes include:
The new choices are expected to help consumers overcome major health and nutrition risks associated with obesity and diets lacking in fiber and whole grains. The program is aiming to reduce high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and type-2 diabetes in children and adolescents.
Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Can you detect potential sources of carbon monoxide in your home? Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless, and tasteless deadly gas produced by incomplete combustion in fuel-burning devices. CO is capable of killing you before you are aware it is affecting you, according to the Pennsylvania Office of the State Fire Commissioner (OSFC).
An annual average of 480 deaths is attributed to unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The average daily number of CO-related deaths is greatest during the months of January (2.07 deaths) and December (1.97 deaths) and lowest during the months of July (0.67 deaths) and August (0.67 deaths).
With the cold months leading in the number of unintentional CO deaths, it is important to identify potential sources. Fuel-fired (non-electric) appliances such as gas and oil furnaces, space heaters, clothes dryers, ranges, ovens, water heaters, charcoal grills, fireplaces and wood-burning stoves all produce CO. Exhaust fumes from generators, vehicles, lawn-mowers, and snow blowers also contain high levels of CO. Absent proper venting, the presence of cracks in a furnace or blocked vents and chimneys can cause CO to build inside your home.
Protect your family with the installation of CO detector alarms on each floor of a residence, especially on each sleeping floor. Install additional detectors near but not within five feet of major fuel burning appliances. Understand the symptoms of CO poisoning and what to do if you suspect its presence.
Dog Law Strengthened
After strengthening legislation to improve kennels and outlaw puppy mills during last year's legislative session, the General Assembly has once again taken strides to reform dog cruelty laws throughout Pennsylvania.
It has become practice for some breeders and dog owners to perform surgical procedures on their dogs, however a new law will outlaw such actions in the near future. The new law will make it illegal for anyone but a veterinarian to perform surgical procedures on a canine. The law includes removing dew claws on dogs more than five days old, ear cropping, debarking, docking or cutting off the tail, and caesarean births.
Additional improvements to the law will require owners to supply proof the surgeries were performed correctly under the scope of the law. Owners must provide detailed records of the procedure to dog wardens or Humane Society police officers for as long as visible surgical wounds appear on the dog. Those records would include the name and license number of the veterinarian, location, and date of the procedure.
Violations of the new law will be a summary offense and the law will not apply
to animals that already have been altered. The new law also addresses animal
fighting and makes it unlawful for a person to steal or acquire an animal for
fighting. A person in violation of animal fighting commits a felony of the
third degree. Having one of the strongest dog protection laws in the union,
Pennsylvania's new law strengthens measures to ensure the health and safety of
animals that will someday serve as pets for families across the Commonwealth.