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Reopening Delayed for Route 340 Bridge Salisbury Township

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Harrisburg, PA – The reopening of the bridge carrying Route 340 (Old Philadelphia Pike) over Pequea Creek in Salisbury Township, Lancaster County, has been delayed.

Construction started on August 20 and was anticipated to be completed in November. However, due to unforeseen geological conditions with limestone rock that required extensive drilling, the new bridge is now anticipated to open in late December.

While the bridge remains closed, drivers will continue to follow a detour along Route 897 (White Horse Road), Route 30 (Lincoln Highway) and Route 10 (Octorara Trail).

In the event of unfavorable weather or unforeseen activities, this schedule may still change.

This bridge is referred to as JV-256 and is one out of the 558 bridges being replaced under the Rapid Bridge Replacement Project. JV references the joint-venture partnership between Walsh/Granite, which is leading construction for the entire project.

The Rapid Bridge Replacement Project is a public-private partnership (P3) between PennDOT and Plenary Walsh Keystone Partners (PWKP), under which PWKP will finance, design, replace, and maintain the bridges for 25 years. The P3 approach will allow PennDOT to replace the bridges more quickly while achieving significant savings and minimizing impacts on motorists.

Aqua Pennsylvania to Restrict Phoenixville Pike and Boot Road for Utility Improvements in West Whiteland and West Goshen Townships

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King of Prussia, PA – Aqua Pennsylvania is planning weeknight lane restrictions with flagging on Phoenixville Pike in West Whiteland Township and Boot Road in West Goshen Township, Chester County, on Wednesday, November 14, through Friday, November 30, from 8:00 PM to 6:00 AM, for water main installation, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today.

The work schedule is:

  • Phoenixville Pike between Boot Road and U.S. 202; and
  • Boot Road between Phoenixville Pike and U.S. 202.

Motorists are advised to allow extra time when traveling through the work areas. All scheduled activities are weather dependent.

Aqua Pennsylvania will complete these projects under a PennDOT Highway Occupancy Permit.

 

Phoenixville Pike and Boot Road Lane Restrictions Chester County.JPG

PECO to Restrict Route 372 (Valley Road) Weekdays for Gas Main Improvement in Chester County

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King of Prussia, PA – PECO Energy is planning a single lane closure with flagging weekdays on Route 372 (Valley Road) between West 5th Avenue and Route 82 (Strode Avenue) in the City of Coatesville, Chester County on Friday, November 30, through Friday, December 7, from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM, for gas main installation, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) today announced.

Motorists are advised to allow extra time when traveling through the work area because backups and delays will occur. All scheduled activities are weather permitting.
PECO Energy will complete this project under a PennDOT Highway Occupancy Permit.
Route 372 (Valley Road) Lane Closure.JPG

Aqua Pennsylvania to Close Phoenixville Pike for Utility Improvements in West Whiteland Township, Chester County

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King of Prussia, PA – Aqua Pennsylvania is planning to close Phoenixville Pike between Nicholas Drive and Boot Road in West Whiteland Township, Chester County, beginning Monday, December 3, for water main installation, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today. Weather permitting, the closure will be in place weekdays from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM through mid- January.

During the closure, Phoenixville Pike motorists will be detoured over King Road, Ship Road, and Boot Road. Local access will be maintained up to the work zone.
Aqua Pennsylvania will complete this project under a PennDOT Highway Occupancy Permit.
Aqua Phonixville Pike closure 11-19-18.JPG

Wolf Administration Announces $10 Million Grant Award to Improve Health Care Integration for Substance Use Disorder and Mental Health Treatment

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Harrisburg, PA – The Wolf Administration today announced grant funding awarded to DHS’ Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services to improve integration between behavioral health and primary care for Pennsylvanians. The administration was awarded $10 million total, distributed as $2 million per year over the next five years.

“A person’s health is influenced by physical, mental, and environmental factors,” said DHS Secretary Teresa Miller. “Treating issues from one perspective can help, but to improve long-term outcomes, we must look at the whole person. This funding will help behavioral health and primary care providers improve coordination of care and establish strong partnerships that use this whole-person approach to help more Pennsylvanians access better care.”

The funding was awarded by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) through its Promoting Integration of Primary and Behavioral Health Care Cooperative Agreements. DHS established four partnerships with health centers around Pennsylvania in 2017 following a competitive application process to target various special populations such as adults with a substance use disorder, children with severe emotional disturbances, and adults with mental illness.

Partnerships supported through this grant funding include:

  • Joseph J. Peters Institute and Public Health Management Corporation Health Network: Identifying and treating adults with a substance use disorder and co-occurring trauma-based condition in Philadelphia County;
  • Delaware Valley Community Health, Inc. and Children’s Crisis Treatment Center: Treating pediatric primary care patients with serious emotional disturbances and other behavioral health care in Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties;
  • Community Guidance Center and Primary Health Network: Treating adults with mental illness and co-occurring physical health conditions or chronic diseases in Indiana County;
  • Broad Top Area Medical Center and J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital: Treating adults and children with substance use disorder, severe emotional disturbances, and mental illness with co-occurring physical health needs in Huntingdon County.

The partnerships will address disparities in behavioral health treatment in these communities by establishing fully integrated, comprehensive care models that address physical and behavioral health conditions. The multi-year funding will allow providers to better monitor and serve complex cases for years to come.

“Often, individuals with substance use disorder have a co-occurring mental illness that is left untreated,” said DDAP Secretary Jennifer Smith. “To effectively treat these individuals they must receive appropriate services to help them into recovery. We are excited for this project and to help more individuals receive the treatment they deserve to become truly healthy.”

Wolf Administration Invites Public to Learn More About PFAS Contamination at November 30 Public Meeting

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Harrisburg, PA – To help residents learn more about perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and to receive input from representatives of government, industry and advocacy groups, the Wolf Administration will hold its first public meeting of the multi-agency PFAS Action Team Friday, November 30, 2018. The meeting will feature presentations from experts from state governments and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency about PFAS contamination and how it is managed, including time for public comment. The meeting will be on Friday, November 30, 2018, beginning at 9:00 AM at the Rachel Carson State Office Building. The meeting will also be webcast.

“As we explore PFAS contamination, we have asked everyone to share their knowledge,” said Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “We need to have as much information as we can on these chemicals and their potential impacts on health and the environment.”
PFAS substances were commonly used in applications that include surface coating of paper and cardboard packaging products, carpets, non-stick pans, and textiles, as well as firefighting foams. These substances have been detected in air, water, and soil in and around production manufacturing facilities, and airports and military bases that used firefighting foams.
“Governor Wolf called on the federal government to show leadership by establishing national safe drinking water standards for PFOS and PFOA, but in the absence of federal action, Pennsylvania will move forward aggressively to ensure Pennsylvania residents are protected,” McDonnell continued.
Presenters at the meeting will include representatives of the federal and state governments, as well as utilities, municipal governments, advocacy organizations, and others. Webcast information is available at www.dep.pa.gov/pfcs.
Companies began phasing out the production and use of several PFAS substances in the early 2000s, and two of the most well studied—perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)—are no longer manufactured or imported into the United States. Despite the phase-out, contamination has been identified at 15 sites in Pennsylvania, each of which are being addressed by state and federal cleanup efforts.

DEP to Hold Public Hearing on Amerikohl Mining’s Revtai Draft Discharge Permit

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The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) District Mining Operations will hold a public information session and hearing on Wednesday, December 12, 2018, on the draft discharge permit for the Amerikohl Revtai mining project in Fayette County.

The draft National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit would cover discharges from the proposed Revtai Government Financed Construction Contract (GFCC), No. 26-17-01, consisting of reclamation of abandoned mine land located in Saltlick Township, Fayette County.
An informal informational session will be held before the hearing on Wednesday, December 12, 2018, from 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM at the Saltlick Township Municipal Building located at 147 Municipal Building Road, Melcroft, PA 15462. The hearing will follow the informational session from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM.
Individuals will have the opportunity to present up to five minutes of oral testimony relevant to the NPDES application and draft NPDES permit during the hearing. Those who wish to present testimony should register in advance by contacting DEP’s community relations coordinator Lauren Fraley at lfraley@pa.gov​ or 412-442-4203. Preregistration will be taken through noon on December 11, 2018. Individuals will be called to testify in the order they registered. Time permitting, those who did not register will be given the opportunity to testify.
DEP will record testimony and receive written comments throughout the hearing regarding the draft NPDES permit. Testifiers should bring at least one copy of their testimony and exhibits for submission to DEP. Persons unable to attend the hearing may submit three copies of a written statement and exhibits within 15 days thereafter to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, District Mining Operations, 131 Broadview Road, New Stanton, PA 15672. Written submittals must contain the following:
• Name, address and telephone number of the person submitting the comments.
• Identification of the proposed draft NPDES Permit No. (PA0278271).
• Concise statements regarding the relevancy of the information or objections to issuance of the NPDES Permit.
The site has four proposed NPDES outfalls located in Saltlick Township, Fayette County. The proposed discharges are to unnamed tributaries to Little Champion Creek/Little Champion Creek, with a designated use as Cold Water Fisheries.
DEP will receive written comments on the draft NPDES permit during a 30-day comment period or anytime thereafter, up to the date of the public hearing. The draft NPDES permit was published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin on October 6, 2018. Copies of the draft NPDES permit are on file for public review, by appointments made via 724-925-5500, at the Department of Environmental Protection, District Mining Operations, 131 Broadview Road, New Stanton, PA 15672.
Individuals in need of an accommodation in order to participate in the hearing, as provided for in the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, should contact the Pennsylvania AT&T Relay Service at 1-800-654-5984 (TDD) to discuss how DEP may accommodate your needs.
WHAT: Public hearing on DEP’s intent to issue an NPDES permit for the proposed Revtai Government Financed Construction Contract
WHEN: December 12, 2018, 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
WHERE: Saltlick Township Municipal Building at 147 Municipal Building Road, Melcroft, PA 15462

Wolf Administration Alerts Public of Increasing Hepatitis A Cases Across Pennsylvania

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Harrisburg, PA –Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine today alerted Pennsylvanians of a significant increase in the number of Hepatitis A cases being reported across the state, as other outbreaks are occurring across the country.

“The increase in cases highlights the importance of having a primary care physician who you can speak to if you have concerns over your health,” Dr. Levine said. “Hepatitis A is a highly contagious infection that can be very serious. A conversation with your physician will help determine if you should receive a Hepatitis A vaccine.”

There have been approximately 40-60 cases of Hepatitis A reported in Pennsylvania per year over the last several years. This year, 81 cases have been reported to date. There is increased concern for the disease spreading to other people across the state, particularly within the homeless, men who have sex with men and people who use injection and non-injection drugs.

At the same time, several other states have been experiencing large, ongoing Hepatitis A outbreaks, including neighboring states such as Ohio and West Virginia.

Hepatitis A is a highly contagious liver infection that ranges in severity from a mild infection lasting a few weeks to a severe disease that last for months. Hepatitis A typically spreads when the virus is ingested from objects, food or drinks contaminated by small, undetectable amounts of stool from an infected person. Hepatitis A can also spread from close personal contact with an infected person, such as through sex or caring for someone who is ill.

Newborn Screenings Essential to Detect Serious Medical Conditions

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Harrisburg, PA – The Wolf Administration today emphasized the importance of the newborn screening program designed to screen newborn babies for serious medical conditions and diseases, as well as hearing loss.

“Newborn screening tests help provide early recognition of serious disorders and initiate treatment, as necessary, for children who are affected,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “The birth of a child is an exciting but also a stressful time for parents, and they may not understand the purpose of these screenings. These screenings are conducted with the goal of eliminating or reducing death, disease and disability in newborn children.”

Currently, there are nine conditions that are mandated for screening in Pennsylvania and are tested for through the dried blot spot screen (DBS). Those conditions are:

· Phenylketonuria (PKU);

· Maple syrup urine disease (MSUD);

· Sickle Cell Anemia;

· Congenital hypothyroidism (CH);

· Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH);

· Classic Galactosemia (GAL);

· Glycogen Storage Disease Type II (Pompe Disease) (GAA);

· Mucopolysaccharidosis Type 1 (MPS-1); and

· X-linked Adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD).

There are no cures for any of these nine conditions. However, there are treatments that may include medication, special diets or a special formula. If the disorder is identified early, newborns may lead a healthy life with the help of these treatments.

Newborn screening is conducted through a DBS, a critical congenital heart defect screen and a hearing screen. For all children born in a hospital, these tests are usually completed prior to the baby being discharged. If the baby was born at home or in a birthing facility, the midwife or doctor will provide information to ensure the screening tests are completed.

There are an additional 27 disorders that can also be tested for using the DBS. Different birthing facilities may or may not test for these additional diseases, so it is important that expectant parents have a conversation with their baby’s doctor prior to delivery to determine which conditions are screened for.

A multi-disciplinary advisory board provides recommendations, guidance and support to the department regarding newborn screening. This board has the ability to add conditions to the screening list, as needed.

More information on newborn screening can be found on the Department of Health’s website at health.pa.gov

Governor Wolf Announces Major Online Retailer Will Establish Headquarters, Build 10 Warehouses in Pennsylvania, Creating 500+ Jobs

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Harrisburg, Pa – Governor Tom Wolf announced the rapidly growing online retailer and home delivery provider goPuff will construct a new headquarters in Philadelphia and build ten warehouses across Pennsylvania, creating over 500 new jobs over the next three years.

“goPuff is a great example of how Pennsylvania’s strengths in aspects like education, workforce development, and economic stability have led to a climate where startups thrive,” said Governor Wolf. “My administration is committed to providing the support needed by companies like goPuff as they grow.”

goPuff will invest $4 million in a multi-stage expansion plan centered on the construction of a new 30,000-square-foot headquarters in Philadelphia, located at 3rd and Spring Garden streets. Ten new warehouse operations will be launched in Allegheny, Chester, Dauphin, Lackawanna and Philadelphia counties, and six existing warehouse operations will be expanded. The new headquarters will provide over 150 new, full-time jobs, while the new and expanded warehouses will create approximately 400 jobs over the next three years. The company has about 125 employees at its headquarters now, currently located in the Callowhill neighborhood of Philadelphia.

“We are proud to invest in Philadelphia as we grow our footprint and are grateful for the support of the city as well as Governor Wolf’s economic development team to help us realize our expansion,” added Yakir Gola, co-founder. “We strive to ingrain Philadelphia’s culture as part of goPuff.”

“We consider Philadelphia our first investor. We would not have been able to scale our business as quickly and deliver the moments that matter most to our customers had it not been for the support of the city and the state,” said Rafael Ilishayev, co-founder of goPuff.

goPuff received a funding proposal from the Department of Community and Economic Development for a $400,000 Pennsylvania First grant with phased distribution contingent on job creation. The project was coordinated by the Governor’s Action Team, an experienced group of economic development professionals who report directly to the governor and work with businesses that are considering locating or expanding in Pennsylvania.

goPuff is a digital convenience retailer operating in over 40 U.S. markets and delivering thousands of products – ranging from snacks, drinks, ice cream, alcohol, and more – directly to customers from centrally located warehouses, 24/7, for a flat delivery fee. Since founded in 2013 by two Drexel students — Ilishayev and Gola — the company has grown to operate in 48 markets across 21 states and the District of Columbia and has plans to expand to approximately 60 locations by the end of 2018.