Central PA Building and Construction Trades Council endorses Joe Waltz for 76th House District

The Central PA Building & Construction Trades Council recently voted to officially endorse Joe Waltz for state representative in Pennsylvania House District 76. 

The Council represents thousands of skilled workers regionally, including members of the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 520.  These skilled workers build commercial, industrial, residential, transportation, water and energy infrastructure projects across our region.  

“As rural communities look to compete, having safe bridges, commercial infrastructure, capacity to expand residential areas, diversified energy sources and access to high-speed broadband internet will be critical,” said Waltz. “I will work with all stakeholders to find cost-effective solutions to these challenges, while also supporting a fair wage and safety for workers.”

Waltz, who served 34 years as an educator within the Keystone Central School District before retiring in 2007, previously earned the support of the PSEA (Pennsylvania State Education Association), APSCUF (Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties), PA AFL-CIO (PA American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations), and AFSCME Council 13 (American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees). Waltz supports workers rights and efforts to help attract new job opportunities to the 76th District.

Waltz’s campaign is focused on the people and matters that impact their daily lives, such as good jobs and decent pay; quality education; fiscal responsibility and accountability to the taxpayer; and public health and accessibility to affordable healthcare.


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Joe Waltz earns three union endorsements for 76th House District

Three Pennsylvania labor unions this week announced they will be endorsing Joe Waltz for state representative in Pennsylvania House District 76. The unions include Pennsylvania AFL-CIO, AFSCME Council 13, and APSCUF.

Pennsylvania AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations) and AFSCME Council 13 (American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees) indicated they are recommending Waltz to their members because of his strong support for workers and local government employees in Pennsylvania.

“We support candidates that believe in a strong system of public higher education in the Commonwealth and share our union values,” said Jamie Martin, president of APSCUF (Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties). APSCUF represents faculty members and coaches employed at Pennsylvania’s 14 publicly owned universities, including Lock Haven University.

“I am humbled to receive the support of the AFSCME Council 13, AFL-CIO and APSCUF,” Waltz said. “These unions support the rights of working people and also provide opportunities for employees to acquire valuable skills for the 21st century economy. I pledge to work alongside our local officials, public employees, private industry workers and the education community to help develop meaningful solutions to existing challenges and new opportunities for our district.”

Waltz, who served 34 years as an educator within the Keystone Central School District before retiring in 2007, previously earned the support of the PSEA (Pennsylvania State Education Association). He has indicated his commitment to working with local elected officials as well as state, county and municipal employees to ensure Harrisburg is hearing their concerns. Waltz has also been vocal about his intention to support workers rights and help attract new job opportunities to the 76th District.

Waltz’s campaign is focused on the people and matters that impact their daily lives, such as good jobs and decent pay; quality education; fiscal responsibility and accountability to the taxpayer; and public health and accessibility to affordable healthcare.


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Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman endorses Joe Waltz for 76th House District

On August 11, Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman endorsed Joe Waltz for the 76th House District seat.

The endorsement featuring the lieutenant governor came to the 76th District via a virtual Zoom event due to COVID-19 and related mitigation efforts. A small crowd gathered for the event at the Campaign Headquarters at 108 Bellefonte Ave., and others joined via Zoom to listen in.

“From the bottom of my heart, thank you Joe for running,” Fetterman said. “I wish I could be there in person with all of you, but today is a different day…. I am proud to give a full-throated endorsement to Joe.”

Waltz, who served 34 years as an educator within the Keystone Central School District before retiring in 2007, won the Democratic nomination for the 76th District in the primary. He has indicated he will be a strong advocate for all of the people in the 76th District by focusing on tackling the issues that will help improve the quality of life for area residents and encourage population growth and retention.

“My campaign for the 76th District is focused on the people, and Lieutenant Governor Fetterman has shown through his various listening tours across the state that he too is concerned about hearing from all the people,” said Waltz. “I am thankful to Lieutenant Governor Fetterman for his endorsement.”

Office hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday; and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday through the Nov. 3 election. Waltz is available at the office on Tuesdays between 10 a.m. and noon.


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Joe Waltz opens campaign office in Lock Haven

On July 1, Joe Waltz, Democratic nominee for state representative in Pennsylvania’s 76th House District, officially opened his campaign headquarters in Lock Haven.

Over 50 people stopped in for the midweek grand opening event, which featured a ribbon cutting, a brief speech by Waltz, light refreshments and snacks. Masks were provided at the door and the ribbon cutting and speech streamed live on Facebook due to COVID-19.

See more event photos here!

The office, located at 108 Bellefonte Ave., is being shared with the Clinton County Democratic Party.  Anyone interested in learning more about Waltz’s campaign, getting yard signs, volunteering for the campaign, or registering to vote, are encouraged to stop in. Office hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday; and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday through the Nov. 3 election.

Waltz thanked all the volunteers who cleaned, decorated and prepared the office for the grand opening. He also encouraged people to get involved in the campaign.

“Now that we have a nice office, and now that we have a large enough office that we can follow social distancing protocol, we need help. We need people to come in and volunteer their time, whether it’s an hour, whether it’s five hours, whether it’s 10 minutes a day for a week,” Waltz said, before explaining why people have a vested interest in his campaign.

“My name is on the ballot, but let’s be honest, I’m not the only one in this room that’s running for office. Every single one of you right here, right now, in this room, is also running for office. Everybody in 76th District is also running for office,” he explained. “I feel that at this point in my life, I have so much in common with everybody…. When I win, you’re going to win. When I go to Harrisburg, you’re going to go to Harrisburg. And due to all of the common life stories, the common life experiences we have, I will simply be your voice in Harrisburg.”

In closing, Waltz said he will listen to everybody.

“My idea of a ‘politician’ is not just to be a representative; it’s to be a helper…. I don’t care if you’re young or old, I don’t care if you’re a man or a woman, I don’t care what race, I don’t care what religion, I don’t care who you love … If you call me, if you walk in my office, if you send me an email, at the moment I answer that phone, at the moment I open that email, at the moment you walk in that door — you are a constituent. I don’t care if you’re a Republican, Democrat, other; you’re a constituent. And that’s the kind of representative I want to be.”

Anyone wishing to volunteer at the campaign headquarters is encouraged to sign up here.


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Joe Waltz Campaign Headquarters Opens July 1

A shared campaign headquarters for the Friends of Joe Waltz, the committee established to support Joe Waltz’s campaign for Pennsylvania’s 76th Legislative District, and the Clinton County Democratic Party will open on July 1.

A ribbon cutting ceremony will be held at 1 p.m. during the grand opening event, which will also feature light snacks and refreshments. An online component of the opening will be streamed on Facebook as well, so that people can also tune in remotely.

Located at 108 Bellefonte Avenue in Lock Haven, the campaign headquarters will be open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday from July 1 through the Nov. 3 election. The office will be closed on July 4 in observance of Independence Day.

The office, which will follow social distancing guidelines and safety protocols set forth by the state and the CDC, will be a place where the public can learn more about Joe Waltz and other Democrats seeking office, obtain yard signs, volunteer for campaigns, and register to vote.

Anyone wishing to volunteer at the campaign headquarters is encouraged to sign up here.


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Joe Waltz offers thoughts on racial injustice

Recently, the Centre Daily Times sent questions to Joe Waltz, candidate for PA 76th District State Representative, regarding George Floyd, racial injustice and more.

Here is the Q&A verbatim.

CDT: Did you watch the George Floyd video? If so, what was your initial reaction? (And, if not, why?)

JW: Yes, I did see the George Floyd video. My reaction was one of extreme sadness.

CDT: Do you believe most protests surrounding the movement sparked by George Floyd are peaceful? And would you be supportive of President Trump calling on the Insurrection Act of 1807 to quell civil disorder?

JW: Yes, I do believe most protests, including the ones locally, have been peaceful. For that reason, I feel there is no need for the Insurrection Act of 1807 to be initiated. 

CDT: What, if any, law-enforcement laws or policies should be re-evaluated to prevent an incident similar to George Floyd?

JW: I believe a majority of law enforcement personnel are caring and devoted public servants who are sympathetic to the George Floyd incident and its aftermath.  However, this is one of too many such incidents that have taken place, and the underlying issues need to be addressed on a structural level to ensure our society lives up to the promise of providing equal protections under the law. Policies and programs that encourage law enforcement agencies to build better relationships with the people they serve, to study and recognize racial bias and its implications in their line of duty, to only use reasonable force, and to wear body cameras for accountability are all good places to start. Some departments already have such policies in place, and I am hopeful that these will be reemphasized and reevaluated in light of unfolding events. Ultimately, learning from and being accountable to one another will help us build stronger, safer communities that are just for all residents living in them.

To read the full CDT article, click here.

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June 2: Primary Election Day, Deadline for Mail-in Ballots

Tuesday, June 2 will mark the 2020 Pennsylvania Primary.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, precautions are recommended when going to the polling place. In addition, campaign volunteers will be limited at polling locations to allow voters to cast their ballots safely.

Here are some things to know about the June 2 Primary.


RETURN MAIL-IN BALLOTS

Registered voters across Pennsylvania were able to apply to vote by mail through May 26. Those who applied and received ballots must return their ballots to their County Elections Office by 8 p.m. on June 2 for their vote to be counted.

If you do not believe your ballot will arrive via mail on time, consider personally delivering your ballot to your respective Elections Office. 

County Elections Offices

CENTRE COUNTY

Website: www.centrecountypa.gov

Phone: (814) 355-6703

Email: Elections@centrecountypa.gov 

Address: 420 Holmes St., Bellefonte, PA 16823

Hours: Monday through Friday

8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

CLINTON COUNTY

Website: www.clintoncountypa.com

Phone: (570) 893-4019

Email: mboileau@clintoncountypa.com 

Address: 2 Piper Way, Suite 309, Lock Haven, PA 17745

Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday – 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday – 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Note: If you applied for a mail-In ballot but did not return it, you may complete a provisional ballot at your polling location on election day.


WHAT TO EXPECT AT THE POLLS 

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on June 2.

While inside the polling place, voters are asked to not discuss political subjects. Election officials may ask your name, address and possibly your date of birth. After determining you are eligible to vote, you will be asked to sign your name in the poll book. 

Sample Ballots

(Click links below)


POLLING LOCATIONS

CENTRE COUNTY

There have been polling location changes for several precincts in Centre County, including two in the 76th District:

Precinct 40 – Burnside Township
From: Pine Glen UMC
To: Pine Glen Fire Company, 1003 Pine Glen Rd, Karthaus

Precinct 14 – Snow Shoe Boro
From: Snow Shoe Borough Bldg
To: Mt. Top Area Elementary School, 100 School Dr, Snow Shoe

Find your polling location | Centre County 


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Congratulations, Class of 2020!

To the Class of 2020,

Congratulations on this momentous occasion!

All of the achievements throughout your academic career are coming to a head. You have proven through hard work and determination that, if you put your mind to it, you can accomplish any goal you set for yourself.

And that’s not to be taken lightly — especially given the unprecedented situation unfolding before us today.

Your family, friends and community are proud of you for your accomplishments — and we look at you with hope for what we know you can achieve for future generations.

You’ve overcome academic challenges, social stresses and any number of other obstacles and pressures. You have prioritized your responsibilities and developed new skills, while also having fun and creating memories that will last a lifetime. These are the things you will take with you as you enter or re-enter the workforce. 

Above all else, though, is the fact that you have invested in yourself. You took that extra step. You had a vision and you stepped toward it. Now is the time to capitalize on your investment.

In the face of this new reality, I encourage you to use the lessons you’ve learned and the skills you’ve acquired to adapt and to find the stepping stones to your career goals. 

COVID-19 may have altered our ability to celebrate and function the way we would have liked, but let’s refuse to let it stifle dreams.  It is but one of many challenges before us that will require your generation’s innovative spirit and tenacity to overcome.

So today, I ask you to continue to work hard, to be bold, and to keep on learning.  And always remember, if you put your mind to it, you can accomplish any goal you set for yourself. In the process, you will help make this world the kind of place you want to live in.

Congratulations, Class of 2020, and best wishes!

Joe Waltz

Candidate for PA 76TH Legislative District

Joe Waltz shares message of hope in face of COVID-19

(Editor’s note: The message below is the transcript from the above video featuring Joe Waltz.)

Hello fellow residents of Clinton and Centre Counties. For those of you who may not know me yet, my name is Joe Waltz, and I am running to be your next State Representative in Pennsylvania’s 76th House District.

Today, I wanted to come to you with a message of understanding, hope and compassion, and to reflect on our communities’ proven resilience.

We have seen unprecedented changes unfolding in our lives over the past several weeks. The importance of things we once may have taken for granted now shines bright: the camaraderie of family and friends, good health, a clean natural environment, tasty food and the ability to go out and enjoy our favorite establishments.

But that doesn’t mean we’re not all grappling with hard realities.

Children, teenagers and young adults who would typically be in school right now are home, with school not coming back in session and extracurriculars put on hold. Employees — and many employers — are now unable to work. The small businesses, and organizations, that make our communities unique and provide the services and products we all cherish are struggling to keep afloat. Seniors and people with immune deficiencies are facing higher risks. Everyone is weary, afraid of getting sick, and worried about losing loved ones. They’re also afraid of not being able to put food on the table, about having to choose between an electricity bill or a healthcare fee. 

Yes, the economic impact for our area is deep and sadly we’re not out of the woods yet. But, there are lights shining at the end of the tunnel.

Agencies, organizations, and governments are stepping up in various ways to help alleviate the burdens families are facing right now. Public health officials in the White House have outlined a strategic path to reopening businesses and industries that have been put on standby the past few weeks. These guidelines for when and how to reopen are based on scientific research and are being implemented across the country by officials from both parties. 

This isn’t a time for partisan politics or to point fingers and place blame. It’s a time for us to come together, to provide a sense of community when people need it most, and to do what must be done to deal with this virus and get our communities back on track.

With some precautions in place, businesses deemed “non-essential” during this shutdown will soon be able to open their doors once more. That doesn’t mean the pain caused by the past several weeks will disappear. I urge everyone to consider how they can support local businesses now and once things are getting back to normal — either through the purchase of gift cards, online and takeout orders, or a simple donation.

We are living through an unparalleled time and there’s no blueprint or set of directions for any of us to follow. As we continue to take in new information about the virus, how and where it is spreading, what can be done to mitigate it, and when we can begin moving forward, take it day by day. Please listen to the professionals who rely on factual data, take every precaution now as well as after things open up again, and try to stay hopeful. Together we can beat this.

Throughout this ordeal, I’ve heard over and over again the idea that “We’re all in this together.” I couldn’t agree more. And I think it’s something that we should all remember as we pull through this.

Our area has fought back against what, at times, have felt like insurmountable odds: ravaging floods, the loss of major industries, and compounded economic hardships. We have proven our resilience in more ways than one, finding ways to protect, sustain and uplift our communities. We come together when it matters most. 

And this situation is no different. It’s evident in the food drives that have popped up or expanded to help families in need, the hand-drawn rainbows in windows that serve as nodes of hope, and in the gesture of wearing a mask to protect a neighbor. 

Lastly, I just want to remind everyone that my campaign has developed a resource page for people impacted by Covid-19 that is being updated regularly, and we are continuing to plan virtual events to hear from 76th District residents. You can learn more at www.ElectJoeWaltz.com/coronavirus-assistance

Thank you to all of the healthcare providers, emergency services professionals, organizations, agencies, and individuals helping people in this time of need. And thanks also to everyone working in essential industries — from grocery store clerks to production line technicians, to hospital janitorial staff and everyone in between — for showing up every day and continuing to ensure the vital needs of our communities are met. 

Stay safe and I hope to soon see you all out and about soon, enjoying the camaraderie of loved ones and the unique assets our communities have to offer.

First virtual Cup of Joe showcases concerns of 76th District residents

On Monday, April 20th, Joe Waltz, candidate for Pennsylvania’s 76th House District, candidly spoke with voters on a number of topics during his first ever Virtual Cup of Joe Town Hall.

Participants were able to sign up and submit questions in advance. In addition, questions were submitted through Zoom during the call.

Waltz answered questions in detail, and they ranged in terms of subject, including: whether or not public schools are fairly funded, plans to revitalize the local economy, educational opportunities for the district, how to best support our residents during this pandemic, thoughts on gun rights and recreational marijuana, ways to protect the environment, how to fight for equality in our area, and where funds are most needed in combating the opioid epidemic.

For example, when asked about where states can be impactful on climate change, Waltz offered the following ideas, “Well there are a number of things. For example, states could create financial incentives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. I think the states could require a certain percentage of electricity to come from renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar.”

And when asked about his thoughts on public kindergarten, Waltz said he thinks it’s a good idea. “It allows every student in the district the opportunity to reach their highest potential,” he noted.

Referencing various statistics and case studies throughout the event, Waltz also sprinkled in messages of hope, plans for progress and candidly hit home how he would provide a different type of leadership in Harrisburg. He emphasized the fact that the 76th District is “not a single-issue district,” and there are many fronts that need to be addressed to continue to help our rural communities thrive.

Waltz reiterated that his shared experiences with so many people in the 76th District will allow him to represent the area effectively while championing new opportunities and confronting challenges. From growing up on a farm, to struggling to pay bills in college to struggling to pay student loans afterwards, to challenges entrepreneurs face and the complexities of living on a fixed income or caring for a loved one in a nursing home, Joe said he understands the challenges people face and will fight for solutions.

ABOUT VIRTUAL CUP OF JOE

While the campaign to elect Joe Waltz initially envisioned hosting “Cup of Joe” outreach events around the 76th District, where residents could enjoy a cup of fresh coffee while talking with Joe about their ideas and concerns, current circumstances required a new format. The campaign decided to salvage the concept and take it virtual, using Zoom video conferencing and later other live social media appearances. These town halls provide an opportunity for community members to come together, ask Joe questions and learn more about his campaign to represent Pennsylvania’s 76th District in Harrisburg.

More Virtual Cup of Joe Town Hall events are being planned and will be announced soon. Stay tuned!

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Learn more about Joe Waltz, his campaign, and more at www.ElectJoeWaltz.com