Happy Birthday Lillie

Article posted on February 28, 2009

Happy Birthday Lillie! Lillie turned 2 today without much pomp and circumstance, not even a cake (she didn’t want to draw a lot of attention to herself). I was out all morning, got a little work done then hit the Jaffa Sports Show for a few hours before going to the Six Mile Run Fire Company’s Annual Dinner, which featured an excellent Swiss Steak dinner. The crowd was larger today at the show and we ran out of some of our materials already, and we have lots of materials. I talked to folks today about 2nd Amendment rights, the sovereignty of states, the Hollidaysburg Veterans Home, the new dog law, spotlighting deer, preserving elk and lots of other things. Events like these are always a learning experience.

– John

I’ll have more to relay tomorrow

Article posted on February 27, 2009

I met with some constituents this morning and got some other things done with staff. Most of the remainder of the day I was at the Jaffa Mosque for the Sports Show. I talked to dozens of people about lots of different subjects including the Chesapeake Bay initiative, contractor registration, helping with a non-profit, free health clinics, various hunting laws, raising the gasoline tax, getting a 50th anniversary congratulatory letter from the White House, the state budget and some personal stories from people who knew me or my family over the years. I even saw a second cousin (or something like that) who I haven’t seen for a while. His birthday is today, he’s 93! There will be more people tomorrow and more discussions. It’s always interesting and a good way to find out what people are thinking. I’ll have more things to relay in tomorrow’s post.

– John

An idea that needs to be explored

Article posted on February 26, 2009

I was on Gary Dull’s Christian radio show again this afternoon. One of the topics discussed was the Governor’s proposal to merge school districts in PA. I was in a recent meeting to discuss this proposal and found that there is some room for debate about just what should happen. The number, he suggested, of trimming the current 500 districts down to 100 seems too ambitious. A process would need to be developed that would set up some criteria for identifying which districts would be included in a merger and how the merger process would be executed, including paying for the significant upfront costs. The merger would focus on combining administrative functions and not closing schools, which is what some people think of when this subject comes up. There is a long way to go before we know if this is a good and workable idea, but it is one that needs to be explored

– John

We provide a lot of answers and information

Article posted on February 25, 2009

I was in Harrisburg all day today. I had a few meetings and took care of a couple of other odds and ends. We are getting ready for the Jaffa Sports Show this weekend and I brought back a load of publications that we will have at our booth. Charlie States from my office was down today also and loaded up his truck. He told me that we actually got a supply of materials that we can use for a quite a while. We go through a lot of publications this weekend and we’re ready. This is a unique event for us and I see hundreds and hundreds of people over the three day show. I get asked about all sorts of issues and between myself and my staff, we provide a lot of answers and information.

– John


Article posted on February 25, 2009



Senator Eichelberger Appointed to Local Government Commission


Says He is Looking Forward to Serving


Hollidaysburg, PA – Wednesday, February 25, 2009, Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr. announced today that he has been appointed to the Local Government Commission for the 2009-2010 Legislative Session.  The appointment was made on Thursday, February 19th by President Pro Tempore and Lieutenant Governor Joseph Scarnati (R-25).


“It is an honor for me to serve and utilize my knowledge as a former county commissioner.  The Local Government Commission provides a direct link between local officials and the state legislature.  This is critical, as we must all work together to address the many difficult challenges faced by local government,” said Eichelberger.


The Local Government Commission is a bicameral, bipartisan legislative service agency.  Created in 1935 by an Act of Assembly, it is one of the oldest agencies of its kind in the United States.  The Commission is comprised of five Senate Members and five House Members, appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House, respectively.  The Commission holds quarterly meetings to provide a forum at which statewide local government associations present their concerns, possible amendments to municipal codes, and other legislative proposals which they deem important to local government.  The commission studies and considers proposed legislation for validity and pertinence.  If proposed legislation is approved by the Commission, it is then introduced in the House or Senate under Commission sponsorship.


For Further information, please visit the Local Government Commission Web site at http://www.lgc.state.pa.us/



Just some of that large group

Article posted on February 24, 2009

This morning I loaded up my truck and took our Blue Spruce tree, that broke off in the wind storm we had a week or so ago, to the Blair County Compost site. It was a bigger load than I thought but I made it up the mountain and to the compost site. This afternoon I co-sponsored, along with the Huntingdon Chamber of Commerce, an energy expo at the Smithfield Fire Hall. We had plenty of good exhibitors and a fairly good crowd. Wendy Reitz from my office handled this event and things went well. I attended a reception at J.C. Blair Hospital this evening where they dedicated a revamped Radiology Department along with some art work that was hung in the hospital. I left the reception to get to an FFA dinner at Hoss’s in Huntingdon and met some good kids that will be great farmers. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, there are a lot of good kids out there. These young people tonight are just some of that large group.

– John


Article posted on February 24, 2009


27th Annual Jaffa Sports Show

Senator Eichelberger and Staff to Attend Show


On Friday, February 27, Saturday 28 and Sunday March 1, 2009, Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr. and staff will again host a booth at the 27th Annual Jaffa Sports Show.   Senator Eichelberger will be providing free copies of Pennsylvania laws and regulations regarding hunting, fishing, boating, and firearms to attendees. 


Who:   Senator Eichelberger and Staff

What:  27th Annual Jaffa Sports Show

When:  Feb. 27th, 28th & March 1st

Where: Jaffa Facilities


The show hours will be Friday, February 27th from noon until 9:00 p.m., Saturday, February 28th 10:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., and Sunday, March 1st from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.  Senator Eichelberger will be present throughout much of the weekend, but specifically there on Sunday 1:30 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. 


Please contact Julie Garofalo, Legislative Aide, at 814-695-8386 or email jgarofalo@pasen.gov for further information. 




Article posted on February 24, 2009


2009 Emergency Services Workshop


All Fire and Emergency Services Personnel Invited


State Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr. and United States Senator Arlen Specter are co-sponsoring the 2009 Emergency Services Workshop for fire and EMS organizations to provide information on resources available for emergency services within the state’s 30th Senatorial District which includes Bedford, Blair, Fulton, and Huntingdon Counties and a portion of Mifflin County.  The workshop will also include an update on legislative issues important to volunteer fire and ambulance services.  This is a free workshop.


Date:               Thursday, March 12, 2009

Time:               6:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Location:         Smithfield Fire Hall

                         10 Firehouse Lane

                         Huntingdon, PA


Information on federal, state, and foundation funding, equipment resources, and technical assistance are just a few of the topics that will be addressed at this workshop.  The workshop will provide an opportunity for emergency service organizations to meet with federal, state, and local representatives about programs to help these organizations meet the resource challenges they face.


Some of the organizations and programs scheduled to participate in the workshop include:

  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Pennsylvania Office of State Fire Commissioner
  • Pennsylvania COSTARS Program
  • Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry
  • Bureau of Supplies and Surplus Operations
  • Penn State Cooperative Extension
  • Other federal, state, and local organizations that offer assistance to emergency service providers


For additional information, please contact Michele Ivory at 1-866-509-EICH(3424) or email mivory@pasen.gov. 




Article posted on February 24, 2009

Energy Expo
Citizens invited to learn how to save on energy costs

Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr. and the Huntingdon County Chamber of Commerce will co-host an Energy Expo on Tuesday, February 24th, from 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. at the Smithfield Fire Hall.  The Energy Expo is free to the public.  Residents will have the opportunity to learn about energy-saving measures that can help protect their wallets.  Even though gasoline prices have dropped, filling up the tank can still leave a significant dent in the family budget.  Electricity prices are also on the minds of consumers these days, as the Commonwealth tackles the issue of electric rate caps that will expire in 2010.  This is why Senator Eichelberger and the Chamber feel that energy is a top priority. 


Who:     Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr. and Huntingdon County Chamber of Commerce

What:    Energy Expo

When:   Tuesday, February 24th, 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Where:  Smithfield Fire Hall, 10 Firehouse Lane, Huntingdon, PA

Cost:      Free to the public


Expo attendees can meet with utility companies, government agencies and businesses that sell energy-efficient products.  There will be information about ways you can conserve energy, through products, services and technologies.  In addition, you can learn about government energy assistance programs.  For instance, did you know that homeowners who are taking steps to make their homes more energy efficient may qualify for the Keystone Home Energy Loan Program (HELP)?  This program, which is primarily supported by the Pennsylvania Treasury Department and the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, provides homeowners with unsecured lines of credit ranging from $1,000 to $10,000.  There are no closing costs or penalties for early payment.  This is just one of many government programs available to Pennsylvanians.


For more information, please contact Wendy Reitz, Legislative Aide in Senator Eichelberger’s office at (814) 695-8386, or email wreitz@pasen.gov.  You can also contact the Chamber at (814) 643-1110, or email mail@huntingdonchamber.com. 


# # #


We try to help them all

Article posted on February 23, 2009

I again today met with a number of constituents and did some work with staff on upcoming events and letters. Every person that I meet with has a different situation that needs addressed. Just like when I was in college, as a young poli-sci major, the key to finding the solution to the problem was knowing the right place to look. Often times, the people that call or write with a question have an issue that does not fall under the realm of state government. We hear a lot of questions about Social Security issues and local government problems that we can’t do much about. I ran into the same problems when I was a County Commissioner. I am surprised how much some people know about government and I am equally surprised how much some people don’t know about government. Regardless, we try to help them all.

– John