News from PALawHelp.org

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PUC Encourages Former Affordable Connectivity Program Customers to Seek Other Assistance Options to Access the Internet

In light of the recent ending of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) due to a lack of federal funding, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today encourages Pennsylvanians to research other assistance options, in addition to reaching out to their internet service providers.

NPLS Announces Free Expungement/Clean Slate Clinic in Sunbury - June 26, 2024

Is your criminal record preventing you from obtaining employment or housing? Are you eligible to expunge your criminal record or have it sealed or clean slated under Pennsylvania law? Come and find out by attending the Expungement and Clean Slate Clinic on Wednesday, June 26, 2024 at 12 Noon at the Degenstein Community Library at 40 S. Fifth Street, Sunbury, PA 17801.

Upcoming LIHEAP Public Hearings Scheduled

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) has recently released the proposed Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) State Plan for 2024-2025. DHS is seeking public comments on the plan and is holding two public meetings to gather input.

PILP Event: KNOW YOUR RIGHTS - Your Right to Humane Treatment While Incarcerated

You are invited to join the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project (PILP) for an important event, in-person or via Zoom! The event will discuss the intricacies of the legal rights of people incarcerated in Pennsylvania.

Shapiro Administration Installs Identity Verification Kiosks At PA CareerLink, UPS Locations To Make It Easier For Pennsylvanians To Apply For Unemployment Compensation Benefits

Pennsylvania's system for filing UC claims uses numerous fraud-detection measures, including virtual identity verification vendor ID.me to verify the identities of all new UC applicants. With grant funding from the U.S. Department of Labor, L&I has installed kiosks at 17 PA CareerLink® locations and 29 UPS locations throughout the Commonwealth to help Pennsylvanians navigate the ID.me process.

Webinar: Navigating Utility Access and Equity - April 30

The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC) and The Pennsylvania Utility Law Project (PULP) are co-hosting a webinar entitled Navigating Utility Access and Equity on April 30, 2024, from 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM Eastern.

Consumer Advisory: Opportunity to cancel student loan debt ends soon

Many student loan borrowers have an opportunity to have their entire student loans cancelled or receive more credit towards cancellation, but they must act before April 30, 2024.

Pennsylvania Homeowner Assistance Fund is reopening on March 18

The Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency has announced that the Pennsylvania Homeowner Assistance Fund will be reopening on Monday, March 18, 2024, to homeowners struggling as a result of pandemic-related financial hardships. PAHAF provides financial assistance to eligible homeowners for mortgage and housing-related expenses to address delinquency and avoid default, foreclosure or displacement from their homes.

Free Property Tax/Rent Rebate Filing Assistance Available At Community Centers Across PA

Representatives from the Department of Revenue (DOR) will visit senior and community centers all across the Commonwealth over the next several weeks to help Pennsylvanians who need help filing their Property Tax/Rent Rebate (PTRR) program applications.

Public Hearings Scheduled on Proposed Peoples Gas $156 Million Rate Increases

Peoples Gas has proposed to raise rates for its customers by approximately $156 million. The proposal could increase consumer bills by as much as 21%. The Public Utility Commission (PUC) is hosting six public input hearings to hear from communities about the impact this rate increase will have on Peoples’ customers. If you or your community will be affected by the rate proposal, you are strongly encouraged to participate in the public input hearings.

North Penn Legal Service Offers Presentation on Utility Rights & Assistance Programs in Wellsboro

North Penn Legal Services (NPLS) is presenting a free program at the Wellsboro Green Free Library on the topic of Utility Rights & Assistance Programs on Wednesday, February 28, 2024 at 5:00 PM Eastern.

Clean Slate 3.0 Enacted into Law - Allows Sealing of Some Old Felony Criminal Records

Clean Slate 3.0 was signed into law on December 14, 2023 by Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro. Under Clean Slate 3.0, less serious drug felonies will be eligible to be sealed by automation after 10 years without a subsequent misdemeanor or felony conviction. Other property-related felonies, such as thefts, will be eligible for sealing after 10 years upon granting of a court petition. It will also shorten waiting periods for sealing convictions of misdemeanor to 7 years and summary convictions to five years.

FTC Adds Support for Consumers in Multiple Languages for Fraud and ID Theft Reporting; Offers Multi-lingual Resources on How to Spot, Avoid, and Report Fraud

As part of its ongoing efforts to combat scammers and protect consumers in every community, the Federal Trade Commission is now providing the ability to report fraud, scams and deceptive practices in multiple languages in addition to English and Spanish. These new language access enhancements will allow people to file reports with the FTC in their preferred language when calling the FTC.

PUC and PA Department of Human Services Kick Off Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Season

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) joined with the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) to mark the start of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) for the 2023-24 winter heating season. This year’s LIHEAP season opened today, Nov. 1, 2023.

Shapiro Administration Announces Increases To SNAP Benefit Amounts And Changes To Income Limits, Alerts Public Of Planned EBT Outages

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) today announced changes made by the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to SNAP income and benefit limits. DHS is also alerting SNAP recipients of planned, temporary Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) service outages occurring on both October 12, 2023, and October 14, 2023, between 3:00 am and 9:00 am.

National Test of Integrated Public Alert and Warning System to be held on Oct. 4, 2023

A National Test of the Federal Communications Commission's Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) will to be held on Oct. 4, 2023 at 2:20 PM. Alerts will be directed to all cell phones and electronic devices during the test.

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