Pittsburgh, PA

Sen. Jay Costa update: Protecting workers and promoting mobility

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From the office of State Senator Jay Costa

Protecting workers from secondhand smoke

To strengthen health protections for Pennsylvania workers, State Rep. Dan Frankel and I have introduced the Protecting Workers from Secondhand Smoke Act.

The state’s Clean Indoor Air Act allows smoking inside casinos, private clubs and certain drinking establishments. But if passed, our legislation would eliminate those exemptions and expand protections for the employees inside those businesses.

Specifically, the Protecting Workers from Secondhand Smoke Act would:

  • Eliminate loopholes in the Clean Indoor Air Act that leave workers exposed to cancer-causing secondhand smoke.
  • Expand the definition of smoking to include e-cigarettes in order to combat the increase in vaping-related illnesses.
  • Give all localities the ability to enact smoke-free ordinances that are more protective than state law.

Rep. Frankel noted that pandemic restrictions eliminated smoking in casinos for a year amid a host of other challenges and industry revenues remained strong.

Going to work shouldn't increase someone's risk of cancer or lung disease, but that is exactly what happens to the men and women who work in casinos. Indoor smoking exceptions at these facilities are unsafe for workers and non-smoking patrons. Clean air is a right; that's why I'm introducing this legislation again with my colleague Rep. Frankel.

News release: Sen. Costa announces $1.7 Million Grant for Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Pa.April 21, 2022 − Senator Jay Costa today announced the award of more than $1.75 million in state grant funding for the development of multi modal transportation along Sylvan Avenue in the City of Pittsburgh.

$1.76 million has been awarded through PennDOT to reopen a portion of Sylvan Avenue to pedestrian and bicycle traffic as a public trail parallel to SR 885 that will connect the Hazelwood and Greenfield neighborhoods to job centers in Oakland.

“Whether you’re in a car, on a bike or on foot, the City of Pittsburgh must be safe and accessible,” said Senator Costa. “Adding safe spaces for bikers and walkers is critical to ensure that we can all get around this City, particularly on the roads that take folks from home to work every day.”

This grant is part of the Multimodal Transportation Fund, created by Act 89 of 2013.

PennDOT evaluated the applications and made selections based on such criteria as safety benefits, regional economic conditions, the technical and financial feasibility, job creation, energy efficiency, and operational sustainability.

Additionally, PennDOT anticipates accepting Multimodal Transportation Fund applications in fall 2022 for Fiscal Year 2023-24 funding. For more information about the program, visit www.penndot.pa.gov and click on Multimodal Program under the “Projects & Programs” button.

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