USPS Shares Mailbox Reminders September 18, 2018
The United States Postal Service (USPS) has released several tips to encourage customers on city motorized, rural, or highway contract box delivery routes to examine and, where necessary, improve the appearance of their mailboxes. The USPS reminds customers of the need for providing mailboxes that are: approved by the postmaster general, safe to use, conveniently located, and neat in appearance. According to the USPS, mailboxes that meet these four requirements help delivery and collection operations and improve service to the entire route.
Some of the typical activities that may be necessary include: replacing loose hinges on a mailbox door, repainting a mailbox that may have rusted or started to peel, remounting a mailbox post that may have become loose, and replacing or adding house numbers.
Approved traditional or contemporary curbside mailboxes are required whenever a mailbox is newly installed or replaced. However, a custom-built curbside mailbox may be used if the postmaster gives prior approval and if the mailbox conforms generally to the same requirements as approved manufactured curbside mailboxes. A mailbox should display the street name and house number or, if house numbers are not authorized, the assigned box number on the side of a single mailbox or on the doors of grouped mailboxes visible to the approaching carrier. The street number, box number, and/or any other address information must be inscribed in a contrasting color in neat letters and numerals not less than 1 inch in height. Customers are encouraged to group mailboxes whenever practical, especially where many mailboxes are located at or near crossroads, service turnouts, or similar locations. If the mailbox is on a street other than the one on which the customer resides, the street name and house number must be on the mailbox. It is generally in the customers' best interest to display their address on both sides of the box. Police, fire, and rescue personnel often depend on mailbox information to locate people, and they may approach from a different direction than the carrier. In all instances, placing the owner's name on the box is optional.
Generally, customers should install mailboxes with the bottom of the mailbox at a vertical height of between 3.5 to 4 feet from the road surface. However, because of varying road and curb conditions and other factors, the USPS recommends that customers contact the postmaster or carrier before erecting or replacing mailboxes and supports.
The curbside mailbox must be on the right-hand side of the road in the carrier's travel direction in all cases where traffic conditions make it dangerous for the carrier to drive to the left to reach the mailboxes, or where doing so would constitute a violation of federal, state, or local traffic laws and regulations. Mailboxes should be placed so the carrier can safely and conveniently serve them without leaving the vehicle. Carriers are subject to the same traffic laws and regulations as other motorists. Customers must remove obstructions, including vehicles, trash cans, and snow, that impede efficient delivery. Except when a mailbox is temporarily blocked, carriers must have access to the mailbox without leaving the vehicle.
The USPS does not approve support posts. In addition, the USPS does not regulate mounting of mailboxes for purposes of traffic safety. Mailbox posts are often subject to local restrictions, state laws, and federal highway regulations. In areas where snow removal is a problem, the USPS suggests using a semi-arch or extended arm-type support, which allows snowplows to sweep near or under boxes without damaging supports. For further information on authorized post and support mountings, customers may contact either American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, 444 N. Capitol St. N.W. Suite 249, Washington, D.C., 200011-1512, or Federal Highway Administration Office of Highway Safety HHS 10, 400 Seventh St. S.W., Washington, D.C., 20590-0003.
Additional information is available at www.usps.com/manage/mailboxes.htm.
Trust Fund Honors Veterans Organizations September 14, 2018
Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania's adjutant general and head of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), recently attended an event to personally thank Veterans' Trust Fund (VTF) grant recipients for their work in support of the commonwealth's nearly 820,000 veterans. The event in Harrisburg was hosted by Volunteers of America of Pennsylvania, one of the honorees.
The event was the third of four being held in Harrisburg, Erie, Bedford, and Norristown to recognize 31 VTF grant recipients. Grants issued through the VTF allow DMVA to expand its partnerships with charitable organizations, veterans' service organizations, and county directors of veterans affairs, ultimately benefiting commonwealth veterans and their families.
The nine organizations recognized for their special programs and services include Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, Harrisburg; Dog T.A.G.S., Mechanicsburg; Clinton County Office of Veterans Affairs; Franklin County Office of Veterans Affairs; Juniata and Mifflin County Offices of Veterans Affairs; Pennsylvania Wounded Warriors, Camp Hill; Potter County Office of Veterans Affairs; Veteran's Helping Hand, York; and Volunteers of America of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg.
A total of 13 Pennsylvania County Veterans Affairs Offices received $150,000 in grants and 18 charitable or veteran service organizations received $650,000 in grants from the Pennsylvania Veterans' Trust Fund. The grants are funded by Pennsylvanians who voluntarily made a donation when applying for or renewing their driver's license or photo ID and renewing a motor vehicle registration, proceeds from the sale of the Honoring Our Veterans license plates, and private donations.
The DMVA is authorized to solicit and accept donations to the VTF on behalf of the commonwealth. Tax-deductible donations can be made at www.donate.dmva.pa.gov. To learn more about the VTF, readers may visit www.vtf.pa.gov or www.facebook.com/padmva.
Phillips-Hill Posts Satellite Hours September 13, 2018
Residents of the 93rd Legislative District may attend satellite office hours for state Rep. Kristin Phillips-Hill in September. The satellite office at Citizens Volunteer Fire Company, 171 S. Market St., Fawn Grove, will be open on Thursday, Sept. 27, from 9 a.m. to noon.
For more information, readers may call Phillips-Hill's district office at 717-428-9889 or 877-207-2272.
Veterans' Assistance Posted September 13, 2018
The Pennsylvania Veterans of Foreign Wars invites veterans of all ages and from all service eras to utilize its Service Officer Network to receive free information and assistance for government benefits including VA healthcare, compensation, pension, education and dependent benefits. Surviving spouses can also use these VFW Service Officers to learn about their eligibility for VA benefits.
A VFW state service officer is now available for scheduled appointments at Lititz VFW Post 1463 on Mondays from noon to 5 p.m. To make an appointment, readers may call 717-234-7927 and specify Lititz as their preferred appointment location. The service is made possible by Pennsylvania Act 66.
The addition of Lititz as a VFW service officer outreach location was chosen to reduce travel time and expense for veterans living in rural areas, who might otherwise drive farther to receive assistance with a VA claim.
Veterans do not have to be a VFW member to receive benefit filing assistance, but they must provide a DD-214 discharge form and possibly other information about their military service in order to enter a VA claim. Veterans requesting that the VFW becomes involved in their claim will need to sign a form declaring the VFW as their power of attorney. Veterans who have already signed a power of attorney with another organization should either follow up with that organization or sign over their power of attorney to the VFW.
Vietnam veterans should know that the VA has defined some health conditions as being "presumptive" for being caused by exposure to the defoliant Agent Orange. Veterans with these health conditions may be eligible for benefits (there are qualifying issues with each condition): AL amyloidosis, chronic B-cell leukemias, chloracne, diabetes mellitus Type 2, Hodgkin's disease, ischemic heart disease, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, Parkinson's disease, peripheral neuropathy/ early-onset, porphyria cutanea tarda, prostate cancer, respiratory cancers, and soft tissue sarcomas. For more details, readers may visit www.va.gov and search for Agent Orange information.
For general information about the VFW's State Service Officer network, visit www.vfwpahq.org and select the "VA Claims Help" section. Sections for "Veterans Links" and "Veterans Resources" also provide helpful information.
Deputy Sheriff Makes Connection At Festival September 12, 2018
On duty at the recent Citadel Country Spirit USA concert in Ludwig's Corner, Chester County Deputy Sheriff Matthew "Jamie" Mendenhall was giving Nero, his K-9 partner, some exercise when a man initiated a conversation about the importance of K-9s. The man subsequently introduced himself as Doug Paisley, the father of country superstar Brad Paisley, who was to perform at the concert on Aug. 26.
As the two continued their discussion, Mendenhall noted that two area K-9 handlers had lost their lives in the line of duty in recent years: Plymouth Township Police Officer Bradley Fox and Berks County Deputy Sheriff Kyle Pagerly. Mendenhall, who came to Chester County from the Berks County Sheriff's Office, had supervised Kyle in the K-9 Unit there.
Doug asked if Mendenhall could supply photos of the two fallen heroes so that his son could pay tribute to them during his performance. Further, he asked if Mendenhall wanted tickets to the concert.
Mendenhall shared that Kyle and his wife, Alecia, were both huge fans of Brad. In fact, Kyle's special song for his wife was Brad's "She's Everything." Mendenhall then contacted Alecia to let her know that "Brad Paisley's dad says hello" and to see if she wanted to come to the concert.
Alecia arrived 15 minutes before Brad Paisley took the stage; it was the first time she had seen him live. He sang "When I Get Where I'm Going" in front of a giant projection showing Kyle and Fox and their respective K-9 partners, Jynx and Nick. The country icon also performed Kyle Pagerly's anthem to his wife. According to Doug, that song was added and had not been on the original play list.
Alecia also reconnected with Chester County Sgt. Paul Bryant Jr., who was also on duty at the music festival. She had not seen Bryant since the day her late husband graduated from the Philadelphia Police K-9 Academy, where the sergeant had previously worked.
At the end of the event, Mendenhall was unable to leave the concert grounds because his vehicle was blocked by a school bus bearing the number 27, which was Kyle's badge number.
For more information on Kyle Pagerly, readers may visit https://kylepagerlymemorial.com.
Grove Plans Citizens' Forum September 12, 2018
A Citizens' Forum hosted by state Rep. Seth Grove will take place at the West Manchester Township Building, 380 E. Berlin Road, on Thursday, Sept. 20, from 6 to 8 p.m. Grove will give updates on state legislative issues. Residents of the 196th District will be encouraged to ask questions and join in the discussion. Reservations are not needed.
Residents who are unable to attend the forum but who have a question, concern or idea to discuss may call Grove's district office at 717-767-3947 during normal business hours. Citizens may also contact Grove by visiting www.RepGrove.com or www.Facebook.com/RepSethGrove.
The 196th District includes Dover, Paradise, Jackson, North Codorus and West Manchester townships, as well as Spring Grove, Dover and New Salem boroughs.
Planning Commission Posts Meeting September 12, 2018
The York County planning commission has scheduled the second of three public information sessions to discuss creating a county stormwater authority to combat flooding and water pollution in York County. The meeting will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 25, at the York Learning Center, 300 E. Seventh Ave., York, from 6 to 8 p.m. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m.
The purpose of the meeting is to further educate the public on the possibility of creating a countywide stormwater authority and, if created, how the authority would operate, what services it would provide, and what fees would be assessed. Planners will present an update on the exploration process and answer questions from the public. Breakout groups will form for property-specific items.
If approved by the York County commissioners, a stormwater authority would address flooding and pollution problems by investing in stream restoration, erosion control and reforestation projects along waterways throughout the county. Approximately 1,100 miles of streams that do not meet mandated environmental standards have been identified in York County, and many miles of streams have not yet been tested. The planning commission has identified 215 locations on roads in the county that experience frequent flooding problems.
The county is considering the stormwater authority option while Pennsylvania and neighboring states work together to clean the Susquehanna River and the Chesapeake Bay. The stormwater authority would work to help York County meet its responsibilities to reduce the amount of nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment that flows into the Susquehanna River from local waterways.
The final public information session will take place on Thursday, Nov. 8. Residents may obtain updates and submit comments at www.yorkstormwater.com.
Safe Driving Reminder Posted September 10, 2018
Motorists, parents, and children are encouraged to refresh their memories about how to share the road safely with school buses and other school transportation vehicles.
Pennsylvania law requires motorists stop at least 10 feet away from school buses when their red lights are flashing and their stop arm is extended. Motorists following or traveling alongside a school bus must also stop until the red lights have stopped flashing and the stop arm is withdrawn. Drivers should not proceed until all the children have reached a place of safety. Penalties for failure to obey school bus safety laws can result in a $250 fine, five points on a driving record, and a 60-day license suspension.
Parents are reminded to ensure that their children are at the bus stop early to avoid rushing. Students should stay where the bus driver can see them while boarding or exiting the bus.
For more information and tips on school bus safety, readers may visit www.penndot.gov/TravelInPA/Safety/TrafficSafetyAndDriverTopics/Pages/School-Bus-Safety.aspx.
Concussion News Posted September 10, 2018
Students, parents, and coaches are reminded about ways to prevent, recognize and manage concussions. A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or from a fall or blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth.
Concussions can have serious short-term and long-term impacts, especially on young people, whose brains are still developing. In 2011, the Safety in Youth Sports Act was signed into law in Pennsylvania, requiring all school entities to develop return-to-play policies for student athletes with concussions, as well as requiring related training for coaches.
Readers may visit www.health.pa.gov and search for "traumatic brain injury" for approved curricula for coaches and other school personnel, along with frequently asked questions about the law and many other state-related resources. Most importantly, if parents think their child has a concussion, they should seek medical attention, discuss the injury with the coach, and not allow the athlete to return to play without permission from a health care professional.
Nature Programs Planned September 6, 2018
The Lancaster County Department of Parks and Recreation will offer programs to the community. Unless otherwise noted, there is a per-person fee to take part in the programs. Programs are for people of all ages and will take place in Lancaster County Central Park at the Environmental Center, 1 Nature's Way, Lancaster, unless specified otherwise. To register, readers may visit https://apm.activecommunities.com/LancasterCountyParks or call 717-295-2055. Registration and prepayment are required by noon on the business day before the event, unless otherwise noted.
A Butterflies program will be presented on Thursday, Sept. 13, from 1 to 2 p.m. Families will learn facts about the life cycle of butterflies, their physical traits and the plants they need. Afterward, attendees will watch butterflies on the butterfly bush, look for Monarch caterpillars on the milkweed plants, and use nets to catch butterflies in the field.
Tree Ring Relief Art will take place on Friday, Sept. 14, from 7 to 8 p.m. People age 12 and up may participate. Attendees will make woodcut relief prints and learn about native tree species, tree growth and conservation.
During Squirreling Around on Saturday, Sept. 15, from 10 to 11 a.m., participants will take a hike through Central Park and learn how squirrels prepare for the winter. Afterward, the group will head back to the nature center, where each attendee will make their own make squirrel and drey (nest) to take home.
Wonderful World of Leaves will be offered on Sept. 15 from 1 to 2 p.m. Attendees will help conduct a science experiment revealing the real colors of leaves. As part of the activity, attendees will take a short walk and learn how to identify common trees. The program is appropriate for people age 6 and up.
Medicare Information Sessions Planned September 6, 2018
Individuals are invited to attend an information session for the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period to receive valuable information to assist persons in making a well-informed decision about their health and drug coverage.
Medicare Advantage Plans and Part D Prescription Drug Plans are allowed to change the amounts of their plan deductibles, co-pays, and total out-of-pocket expenses, as well as their drug formularies each year, which is why Medicare strongly recommends that beneficiaries compare their current plan against other plans available for 2019.
The information sessions are for people already on Medicare and enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan or Prescription Drug plan. Space is limited and registration is required. To register, readers may call Lancaster County Office of Aging at 717-299-7979, 800-801-3070, or by email email@example.com.
Sessions will take place at the following locations: Wednesday, Sept. 12, at 10:30 a.m. at Millersville Senior Center, St. Paul Lutheran Church, 222 N. George St., Millersville; Tuesday, Sept. 18, at 10 a.m. Lancaster Neighborhood Senior Center, 33 E. Farnum St., Lancaster; Monday, Sept. 24, at 10 a.m. at Lititz Senior Center, Lititz United Methodist Church, 201 E. Market St., Lititz; Wednesday, Sept. 26, at 6 p.m. at Manheim Township Library, 595 Granite Run Road, Lancaster; Thursday, Sept. 27, at 10:45 a.m. at Lancaster Recreation Senior Center, 525 Fairview Ave., Lancaster; Friday, Oct. 5, at 10:30 a.m. at Columbia Senior Center, Columbia United Methodist Church, 510 Walnut St., Columbia; and Tuesday, Oct. 9, at 10:30 a.m. at Next Gen Senior Center, 184 S. Lime St., Quarryville.
The Medicare Open Enrollment period will run from Monday, Oct. 15, through Friday, Dec. 7.
Medicare beneficiaries will have the chance to get personalized help from APPRISE Medicare counselors at numerous locations during the Open Enrollment Period this year. APPRISE Counselors offer impartial assistance to Medicare beneficiaries so they can receive the most comprehensive healthcare and prescription coverage possible at the best price possible. They also screen beneficiaries to determine eligibility for several benefit programs that can help with the costs of Medicare and prescription coverage.
Those who are already in a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Part D Prescription Drug Plan can make an appointment to meet with an APPRISE counselor during the Open Enrollment Period by contacting Lancaster County Office of Aging at 717-299-7979 or 800-801-3070 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
A list of locations and dates for Annual Enrollment Period appointments is as follows: Adamstown Public Library, 3000 N. Reading Road, Adamstown, on Monday, Nov. 5, from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; Denver Borough Hall, 501 Main St., Denver, on Friday, Oct. 19, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Elizabethtown Area Senior Center, 70 S. Poplar St., Elizabethtown, on Thursday, Nov. 1, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Ephrata Public Library, 550 S. Reading Road, Ephrata, on Tuesday, Nov. 27, from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Also, Lancaster County Office of Aging, 150 N. Queen St., Suite 415, Lancaster, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Mondays and Thursdays, from Oct. 15 through Dec. 6 (except for Nov. 11 and Nov. 22); Lancaster Neighborhood Senior Center, 33 E. Farnum St., Lancaster, on Thursday, Nov. 15, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Lancaster Recreation Center (LRC) Senior Center, 525 Fairview Ave., Lancaster, on Monday, Oct. 22, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1 to 3:30 p.m.; Lititz Public Library, 651 Kissel Hill Rd., Lititz, on Monday, Oct. 29, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 9, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Wednesday, Nov. 28, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Manheim Township Library, 595 Granite Run Road, Lancaster, from 10:30 am - 6:30 pm on Wednesday, Oct. 24, Wednesday, Nov. 7, and Tuesday, Nov. 20; Milanof-Schock Library, 1184 Anderson Ferry Road, Mount Joy, on Tuesday, Oct. 23, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and Quarryville Public Library, 357 Buck Road, Quarryville, on Wednesday, Nov. 14, from noon to 7 p.m.
Walk With Ease Classes Planned September 6, 2018
The Lancaster County Office of Aging invites seniors age 60 or older to Walk With Ease, which will be offered at Lancaster Rec Senior Center, 525 Fairview Ave., Lancaster, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from Monday, Sept. 24, to Wednesday, Nov. 7.
Walk With Ease is a six-week Arthritis Foundation evidence-based physical activity and education program. Classes will include stretching and strengthening, walking, health education, and motivational strategies.
The senior center may be reached at 717-399-7671. For more information on programs of the Lancaster County Office of Aging, readers may call 717-299-7979 or visit www.lancoaging.org.
Paper Shredding Event Posted September 5, 2018
Bancroft Elementary School, 181 Bancroft Road, Kennett Square, will be the site of a paper shredding event on Saturday, Sept. 22, from 9 a.m. to noon. The event will be held by Rep. Eric Roe as a free service to the community.
In addition, attendees may bring shoes, toys, small appliances, and kitchenware for a company that uses donations to generate funds for charities.
For more information, call Roe's district office at 610-388-3100.
Seniors Invited To Breakfast September 5, 2018
Rep. Eric Roe invites all seniors of the 158th Legislative District to a breakfast on Saturday, Sept. 15, from 9 to 11 a.m. at Kennett Middle School, 195 Sunny Dell Road, Landenberg. Everyone age 60 and older is welcome to attend.
Attendees may share their thoughts on state-related issues and will be updated on current state legislation while enjoying the light breakfast.
The breakfast is free to attend, but food is limited, so preregistration is encouraged by calling Roe's office at 610-388-3100.
State Capitol Will Offer Tours September 5, 2018
The state Capitol tour office is accepting reservations for the 2019 spring season. The late spring and early summer seasons are the busiest time for Capitol tours, so early reservations are recommended.
To schedule group tours, readers may call the Capitol tour office at 800-868-7672. Callers should specify their group name, total number of participants, and contact information.
People may also visit the Capitol in small groups, including as families or individuals. Reservations are still recommended.
Tours are available from Mondays to Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays, Sundays and most holidays at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. The Capitol is closed for tours on New Year's Day, Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Weekday tours begin on the hour and every half-hour. The tours last between 30 and 45 minutes depending on the size of the group.
For more information, readers may visit www.pacapitol.com/tours.html.
Contest Open To Dogs August 29, 2018
The Lancaster County Treasurer's Office is partnering with the Pennsylvania SPCA Lancaster Center, the Lancaster County Sheriff's K-9 Unit, a local pet supply store, and others to find the 2019 Face of Lancaster County Dog Law. All currently licensed dog owners countywide may enter their canines to be chosen.
The winner will be featured on all 2019 dog license applications, and the dog's image will be displayed on all Lancaster County Dog Law promotional and marketing items.
The purpose of the contest is to bring awareness to Pennsylvania's dog license requirements and give licensed dog owners the opportunity for their dog to represent the 2019 Dog Law program. The Treasurer's Office also aims to raise awareness about the adoptable dogs and cats in Lancaster County shelters.
To enter their canines, Lancaster County dog owners may submit a picture of their dog with a brief description of how the dog became a part of their family by emailing MartinA@co.lancaster.pa.us or by posting at www.facebook.comMartinLancasterTreasurer. Additionally, the Lancaster County treasurer will be attending the Pennsylvania SPCA Lancaster Center's one-year anniversary celebration on Saturday, Sept. 8, from noon to 3 p.m. at 848 S. Prince St., Lancaster, and dog owners may enter at that time, as well.
The judges' panel will include the Lancaster County treasurer, a representative from the Pennsylvania SPCA Lancaster Center, animal rights advocate Lynn Manton Lewis, Lancaster County Sheriff K-9 Deputy David Cole, and Harry Davis of a local pet store.
The winner will be announced on Saturday, Sept. 22, at 10 a.m. at That Fish Place -That Pet Place, 237 Centerville Road, Lancaster.
Board Seeks New Members August 29, 2018
Columbia Borough is seeking building professionals to serve on the borough's board of review and appeals. The board hears appeals from residents regarding property maintenance matters, including violations of existing borough ordinances.
To fill vacancies within the board, the borough will select five individuals with experience and training on matters pertaining to property maintenance. Individuals who may be interested include general contractors, HVAC technicians, electricians, plumbers, historic renovation specialists, property managers, and landlords.
To express interest in serving on the board, email Rebecca S. Denlinger, borough manager, at email@example.com.
CCAP Awards Posted August 28, 2018
The County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania (CCAP) recently bestowed Criminal Justice System for the 21st Century Best Practices Awards.
The 2018 Best Practices Award in the large county jail category was presented to Lancaster County Prison for their PrisonStat Program, an active leadership strategy to achieve transparency, accountability, and efficiency at the prison, drive real measurable results, and help turnaround within the organization. First initiated in 2016, PrisonStat is modeled on the Performance Stat idea which is an active leadership model that uses an ongoing series of regular meetings during which the chief executive and/or leadership team uses current data to analyze aspects of an organization's performance. This continuing analysis of predetermined metrics produces results by pushing the organization toward performance targets. It also provides leaders with the ability to articulate to the organization and public what improved results need to be demonstrated. Each department head is assigned a metric pertaining to their job description, and are responsible for oversight of a specific area. They are held accountable during the public meeting scheduled every two months and their performance is transparent for the public to see whether positive or negative.
An Honorable Mention in the large jail category was awarded to Berks County Prison for their Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Certification. With their rising mental health population, they recognized a need to improve staff training and education about signs and symptoms of mental illness, for all staff, especially custody supervisors and correctional officers. Staff was trained through Mental Health First Aid USA, an eight-hour course that teaches a five-step action plan encompassing the skills, resources and knowledge to help an individual in crisis connect with appropriate professional, peer and self-help care. This approach is demonstrating results throughout the prison and better outcomes for both inmates and staff.
The 2018 recipient of the Juvenile Alternatives Program Award is Lancaster County for their P.U.L.S.E. Evening Treatment Center. Lancaster County's Juvenile Court, the Office of Juvenile Probation, and the Children and Youth Agency were experiencing a reduced accessibility to specialized programs, as well as the closure of some residential facilities. This resulted in their need to seek out opportunities to keep low to moderate risk juveniles within close proximity to home and community resources which could parallel the successful outcomes of long-term placements.
The Youth Intervention Center initially developed the P.U.L.S.E. Weekend Program with the objective of providing short-term, evidence-based treatment with the goal of diverting juveniles away from the need for long-term placements. The participant's goals, program length, and groups will be determined based on recommendations from the juvenile probation officer or children and youth caseworker, consultation with the parents/guardians, and results of various assessments. The youths participate in evidence-based programs, as well as psycho-educational groups. The results are demonstrated in improved outcomes for juveniles and their families.
The Partner Award recipient is Carolyn McKenna, director of development at Home of the Sparrow in Chester County. Trauma histories, substance use, housing and self-sufficiency are among the challenges facing women's successful re-entry from incarceration in Chester County's criminal justice system. Partnering with the County Criminal Justice System, Home of the Sparrow provides case management services to women re-integrating into their communities following the Collaborative Casework-Women Model developed by the National Institute of Corrections. Home of the Sparrow embraces the philosophy that case management for justice-involved women should be a dynamic, seamless process from entry into the system and continue until the woman is stabilized in her community with the goal of not only reducing criminal behavior but increasing the health and well-being of women, their families, and community. They provide a comprehensive case management model that addresses the complex and multiple needs of women involved with the justice system, recognizing that women have strengths that can be mobilized, while matching services in accordance with risk level and need.
CCAP salutes everyone involved in these efforts for being innovative pioneers in meeting the challenges facing all county jails and juvenile justice providers.
Solid Waste Authority Posts Recycling Update August 23, 2018
The Chester County Solid Waste Authority (SWA) reminds local residents of the "When in doubt, throw it out" message that applies to recyclable materials and curbside collection programs.
According to the SWA, overzealous recyclers may contaminate recyclables with trash, which ruins the ability to market the materials. Properly prepared and collected recyclables are valued commodities sold on the global market. However, when too many nonrecyclables are mixed in with the recyclable material, it all becomes trash because it is too costly to separate and requires disposal at a landfill. This results in more money being spent on collecting, transportating, and processing material that was not worth collecting in the first place.
Material such as hangers, scrap metal, pieces of rope or hose, pieces of wood, yard waste, and children's toys are just a few of the items that contaminate recyclables. Scrap metal may be taken to a scrap dealer, yard waste should be composted, and children's toys may be donated or thrown away if they are broken. These items, along with Styrofoam, polystyrene, and other foam materials, should not be placed in recycling bins.
In addition, plastic bags present a problem because they are not recyclable in most curbside programs. The bags jam the source separating equipment at recycling facilities. Therefore, plastic shopping bags should be returned to a local grocery store, where recycling containers for the bags are typically located at the entrance of the store.
Most curbside recycling programs in Chester County collect mixed paper, flattened corrugated cardboard cut down to 18 by 24 inches, glass bottles and jars, steel and aluminum cans, plastic bottles, and containers with recycling numbers of 1 through 5, as well as 7. SWA programs also collect clean aluminum foil, pie tins, and empty steel aerosol cans. Only plastic containers and bottles with recycling symbols can be recycled. If there is no recycling symbol, it should be thrown away.
For more information, readers may contact their local hauler or municipal recycling coordinator or visit www.chestercountyswa.org.
Police Plan Aggressive Driving Enforcement August 22, 2018
Forty-six local law enforcement agencies throughout southcentral Pennsylvania are joining the Pennsylvania State Police to conduct the third targeted aggressive driving enforcement wave through Sunday, Aug. 26. Southcentral Pennsylvania municipal departments are from Adams, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Lancaster, Lebanon, and York counties.
As part of the Aggressive Driving Enforcement and Education Project, the third wave will aim to reduce the number of aggressive driving-related crashes, injuries and deaths on roadways throughout the state. Any aggressive driver stopped by police will receive a ticket.
The enforcement wave will focus on red light running, the Steer Clear law, tailgating, and speeding. Motorists exhibiting other unsafe behaviors such as driving too fast for conditions, following too closely, or other aggressive actions will also be cited.
During the last enforcement wave from March 19 to April 29, 45 participating municipal law enforcement agencies made contact with 4,376 vehicles, issuing 4,144 citations; 2,761 of those citations were speeding violations. In addition, 26 texting violations were cited, 18 fugitive apprehensions were made, and 27 impaired drivers were removed from roadways.
The aggressive driving enforcement is a part of the Pennsylvania Aggressive Driving Enforcement and Education Project and is funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). More than 235 municipal law enforcement agencies throughout Pennsylvania are participating.
For more information, readers may visit www.penndot.gov/safety.