In this Update:
Stronger Rainy Day Fund Improves PA’s Financial Position
Moody’s Investor Services has affirmed Pennsylvania’s current bond rating and revised the state’s financial outlook from stable to positive.
As part of its decision to upgrade the commonwealth’s status, Moody’s commended the amount of money in the state’s Rainy Day Fund. Bolstering our financial safety net has been a top priority in the past three years, and it is encouraging to see those efforts translate to real results.
Because of hard decisions made by Senate Republicans to resist the urge to spend billions and instead embrace smarter budgeting approaches, Pennsylvania’s financial position has improved.
Revenue Collections Below Monthly Estimate
Each month, the Senate Appropriations Committee prepares an update about the state’s financial health. The most recent report shows that General Fund revenue collections of $2.9 billion in August were below the monthly estimate by $27.1 million, or 0.9%.
The Shapiro Administration recently approved collective bargaining agreements with the state’s major labor unions that are projected to cost taxpayers $3.2 billion during the next four years.
The full update, including the monthly revenue report, is available here.
BC3 Personal Empowerment Training
Butler County Community College (BC3) is offering free personal empowerment training (PET) to Butler County community members in recovery during October and November.
According to BC3: Personal empowerment training is for all human beings. It allows everyone to respect and honor the inherent value within ourselves and for each other. Rooted in emotional intelligence, participants will learn 40 concepts such as beliefs, self-esteem, empathy, active listening and managing conflict. This 24-hour cohort-based learning experience incorporates high levels of activity and engagement. Participants will experience increased knowledge, practice, and application that encourage new perspectives and habits. The common theme for this program is building hope for one’s future.
The training dates are Oct. 16, 18, 23, 25, 30 and Nov. 1, 6, 8, 13 and 15. Each training session runs from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Training will be held on the BC3 main campus in Room 232 of the Heaton Family Learning Commons.
PET facilitator Assistant Ken Clowes will be leading these sessions.
Registration is limited to 20 participants and registrations need to be in by Oct. 9. You can register by contacting Dina Fricke at (724) 287-8711 ext. 8421, firstname.lastname@example.org or bc3.edu/empowerment.
Preparing for Election Day
In honor of National Voter Registration Day on Tuesday, it’s a great time to prepare for Election Day on Nov. 7. The deadline to register to vote is Oct. 23. If you’ve moved, you can also double check that you’re registered to vote at your current address.
Anyone who wishes to vote by mail must apply by Oct. 31. You have to be a registered voter to submit an application.
If you are looking for a way to help your community, learn more about becoming a poll worker here. Thousands of Pennsylvanians are necessary to run elections, and poll workers are needed in all 67 counties.
Free Support Available to Military Members
As a reminder for Suicide Prevention Month, veterans in crisis can call the toll-free Veterans Crisis Line. It serves veterans, service members, National Guard and Reserve members, and those who support them.
A caring, qualified responder is available to provide confidential support and connect callers with resources 24/7, 365 days a year.
Call 988 and then press 1 or chat online.
Fire, Ambulance Companies: Apply Now for State Grants
Fire companies and ambulance services throughout Pennsylvania are encouraged to submit an application for the 2023-24 Fire Company and Emergency Medical Service Grant Program.
Grants may be used for construction or renovation of a unit’s station, the purchase or repair of equipment, training or debt reduction. The maximum grant amount is $20,000 for fire companies and $15,000 for volunteer ambulance services – increased this year because of legislation supported by Senate Republicans.
Find more information and apply online here by Oct. 20 at 4 p.m.
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