We’re proud of him and what he has accomplished

Article posted on October 31, 2013

The big news in the Eichelberger household today is that Johnny got word that he passed his Bar Exam. He graduated from the University of Texas School of Law in June and is working for a large international law firm in Huston, TX. We’re proud of him and what he has accomplished. Closer to home, I was able to get a new iPhone 5s today at a local phone store. My order, made originally on October 5th, was mysteriously cancelled this morning for the 4th time, so I made a call to customer service and a trip to the store. The store had a phone and got me set up with the exception of emails, which I hope to get established tomorrow. I’m anxious to play with the phone tonight. It’s a big change from a Blackberry. Happy Halloween everyone!

-John

Many other promises made about Obamacare by this administration will be broken

Article posted on October 30, 2013

I put a lot of miles on the truck today with trips to Everett, Altoona and Greencastle. While I was driving, I caught some of the news on the Congressional hearing concerning the “Insurance Marketplace” roll out. As predicted by many people in government, including myself, this was an unequivocal disaster. We had briefings on Pennsylvania’s Marketplace over the past year. It was clear to us that the federal government would not be ready to start this element of Obamacare on October 1st, we were right. That issue aside, we learned more about Obamacare through this mess including an admission today that millions of Americans would not be allowed to keep their existing insurance, as was promised by the President. Many of these people will pay much higher premiums than they are paying today, again, not what was promised. I’ll make another prediction tonight, many other promises made about Obamacare by this administration will be broken.

-John

Congrats to them for all they do for agriculture

Article posted on October 29, 2013

Well, I found out last evening that my new cell phone was not shipped yesterday, as promised. They now tell me that it is scheduled to go out on Nov. 4th. This purchase has been anything but easy or pleasant and it’s not over. I just hope that when I get the phone, my contact list, etc. gets transferred alright, my warranties are in place, my refunds come through and the equipment works properly. At this point, I’m not real confident. Tonight I attended the Blair Chamber’s Farm City Dinner. I get to this about every year. The food’s always good at the park and it’s a great group of people. Tonight’s ACE award winner was the Randy and Twila Bigelow family. Congrats to them for all they do for agriculture.

-John

An hour or so to organize goes a long way

Article posted on October 28, 2013

What a beautiful Fall day. We had a deep frost at home this morning, it made for a chilly run. We’re not in session for 2 weeks, so I have a busy schedule in the district and some time to work with staff on planning ahead. My desk looks better today than it has for months. An hour or so to organize goes a long way. I have a meeting tonight, but hope to catch part of the World Series when I get home. I’m not a fan of either team, but it is the World Series and it’s been a great contest so far with some unusual game ending plays. My problem’s been that I’ve fallen asleep before the really good stuff happens. Maybe I’ll stay up tonight, but I doubt it.

-John

Thanks to those board members who are doing just that

Article posted on October 27, 2013

The Altoona Mirror had an interesting editorial today about school district budgets. They correctly point out that making the pension benefits more generous was a costly mistake made by the legislature in 2001. With the tremendous increase in school employees since then and the large pay raises handed out over that time period, the pension obligation went from bad to nearly impossible. Even with more state money going to school districts than ever before, many schools say they don’t have enough money to pay their pension obligations. The state pays half of their obligation, and they still ask for more. We need districts that are holding the line on spending and taxes. Thanks to those board members who are doing just that.

-John

We had a good time last year so, we’re looking forward to it

Article posted on October 26, 2013

I mowed the grass today wondering if this might be the last time for the season. I’m betting that I’m not done yet, but with the weather turning colder, you never know for sure. Charlotte and I are going to the Fur Ball this evening. This is an event for the Central PA Humane Society and Charlotte is on the board of directors. This is the second year for the Ball and we had a good time last year so, we’re looking forward to it. I’ll be missing a couple of key sporting events, but the money goes to a good cause and Charlotte doesn’t ask me to go to nearly as many things as I do her.

-John

I just wish it was that easy

Article posted on October 25, 2013

Today was busy, but was not scheduled tightly. I got the truck back with a new inspection sticker and this afternoon, I got a long overdue haircut. When I get back from Harrisburg, I need to spend time with district staff catching up on constituent cases and other local issues. Since I was booked solid yesterday, today was my first opportunity to accomplish that. We’ve been involved in some really complicated situations lately. Some of these problems end up in the court system and we lose any ability to assist a constituent at that point. Some people think that I can wave a magic wand and fix everything, I just wish it was that easy.

-John

This is a recipe for disaster

Article posted on October 24, 2013

The truck was in the shop today for inspection. I needed some brake work and it won’t be ready until tomorrow. I had to cancel appearing in the Penn State Altoona Homecoming Parade tonight and an appointment after that because I had to get Charlotte at work and she had choir practice. When we’re down to one vehicle, it’s tough for both of us to get everywhere. I was at a Drug and Alcohol Partnership meeting today. I learned that the recent drug use trend is a throwback to more traditional drugs like heroin and that “huffing” is big again. Kids are buying keyboard cleaner and similar products at stores, huffing this stuff in the parking lot with their friends, then driving home. The risk of seizures is high. This is a recipe for disaster.

-John

You’ll have to watch the news tonight for the latest

Article posted on October 23, 2013

The big story in the Senate today was the passage of two Small Games of Chance bills. One would address issues with the nonprofit clubs, the other would expand gambling to taverns. Both bills passed the Senate. The clubs bill’s vote was 45 to 5, the taverns bill was 39 to 11. I did not support the expansion to taverns. The fight now is in the House. The big story at our house tonight was that Charlotte received an email on her WTAJ account that said there was a bomb at the Blair County Court House. She reported it to the authorities and at this point, a bomb sniffing dog found “a device” in the building. You’ll have to watch the news tonight for the latest.

-John

I would encourage everyone to send a quick letter or email to him

Article posted on October 22, 2013

The local government legal advertising bill sailed through committee this morning with only one negative vote and we got the 3rd Class City Code recodification bill through the Senate tonight. It was a good day for legislation in our chamber. I got a call this afternoon about a news story where two State Reps sent letters to Tom Corbett asking him to drop his legal defense of the Commonwealth’s marriage law. I’m sending my own letter to the Governor thanking him for stepping up after our Attorney General refused to do her job and defend the law. I would encourage everyone to send a quick letter or email to him and thank him for not only defending the laws of PA, but protecting the legal definition of marriage as being between one man and one women.

-John