Senator Laughlin E-Newsletter

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Honoring Our Local Veterans at a Special Expo

It was truly an honor to talk with all of the veterans and their families who turned out for the 2019 Veterans Resource and Job Expo that I co-hosted on April 18 at Mercyhurst University with the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial and U.S. Senator Pat Toomey’s office.

There were a number of great services, programs, and businesses at the Expo and I was pleased to see all of the veterans who stopped by to see all of the benefits and services that are out there for them.

The Expo also featured my special guest, State Adjutant General (Major General) Anthony Carrelli.  The Expo provided a unique opportunity for residents to meet the General as he met with and honored our local veterans.

Pennsylvania’s Unemployment Rate at Record Low 3.9 Percent

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate decreased by one-tenth of a percentage point to a record low 3.9 percent in March — the lowest rate since 1976, according to the Department of Labor & Industry.

The estimated number of Pennsylvania residents working or looking for work, known as the civilian labor force, was up 5,000 over the month. The number of employed Pennsylvanians rose by 10,000 to a record high of 6,219,000.

The number of unemployed residents was down 6,000 from February to its lowest level since it was matched in August 2000.  The estimated number of jobs in Pennsylvania, referred to as total nonfarm jobs, was up 4,000 from February to a record high of 6,044,500. 

PennDOT Offers New License Plates 

PENNDOT is now offering several new vehicle registration plates. Five of the new plates offer recognition for veterans, with two special funds plates and a historic military vehicle registration plate rounding out the new offerings.

Proceeds from the two special funds plates will help raise funds for worthy causes. 

The first of these is a new Distracted Driving Awareness registration plate. The plate is $40 with proceeds used to promote public education and outreach on the dangers posed by distracted driving.

The other is an Honoring Our Women Veterans plate.  The fee is $35, with $15 going to the Veterans Trust Fund to be used for programs and resources that assist women veterans.

Three of PENNDOT’s new license plates – the Soldiers Medal, the Presidential Service Badge, and the Legion of Merit – recognize veterans’ special contributions during their service.  Veterans must be able to show that they are recipients of the respective awards. The fee is $20. 

New for motorcycle owners is the Purple Heart Medal Motorcycle plate, which displays the words “Combat Wounded Veteran” across the bottom. Applicants must provide proof that they were the recipient of a Purple Heart Medal. The fee is $11.

Another new offering is a Historic Military Vehicle registration plate for antique or classic vehicles that were manufactured for use in any country’s military forces. The vehicles must be maintained to represent their original military design and markings. This plate is available for both historic military vehicles and historic military motorcycles. The fee is $75.

More information, including eligibility requirements and images of registration plates, is available at by checking Registration Plates under Vehicle Services.

In-season Trout Stocking Underway

While the opening day of trout season has passed, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) reminds anglers that stocking will continue during the season.

In-season stockings are now occurring statewide to replenish creeks and lakes with brook trout, brown trout and rainbow trout. Of the approximately 3.2 million trout to be stocked by the PFBC this season, about 40 percent will go into the water from mid-April through mid-May.

 During the month of May alone, nearly 600,000 adult trout will be stocked. The average size trout stocked by the PFBC measures 11-inches in length, although larger trophy-sized brood fish will also be added to waterways.

To locate stocked trout waters, visit and click on 2019 Trout Stocking Schedules. Waterways on this list are searchable by county, organized in alphabetical order and provide the date, time and meeting place for each stocking event.

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