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What it means here: DCED offers help, Bucknell postpones commencement and more

DCED offers help to businesses in the state

Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis Davin reminded Pennsylvanians that help is available for businesses, stakeholders, and individuals with questions about operations following Gov. Tom Wolf and state Health Secretary Rachel Levine’s orders to mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

“This is a public health crisis unlike anything we have experienced in over a century,” Davin said, according to a news release. “Our highest priority is protecting Pennsylvanians’ health and safety. As safety measures have been put in place, we recognize that businesses want to do the right thing. That’s why we are working around the clock to tap into every available resource and get helpful information to stakeholders as soon as possible during this time where we know many Pennsylvanians have questions. DCED has a number of helpful resources that can help businesses through this difficult time. We continue to urge businesses to frequent DCED’s resource page at www.dced.pa.gov/resources, which is updated regularly and includes important contact information for those who need clarity. Our staff is here to help during this unprecedented time.”

In particular, the department has been updating a “frequently asked questions” document, which provides answers to many recurring questions regarding business types that are considered “Life Sustaining” under the governor’s order, as well as guidance for other business types about operations that are authorized to continue.

Businesses seeking further guidance and clarification from the state can also contact the Department of Community and Economic Development’s customer service resource account at ra-dcedcs@pa.gov. For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19, Pennsylvanians should follow www.governor.pa.gov and www.doh.pa.gov.

Bucknell reschedules commencement

Bucknell University has rescheduled its commencement ceremonies for the Class of 2020 until 9 a.m., July 19, due to the spread of coronavirus, according to an announcement from the university.

The event was originally scheduled for May 17.

In an email to graduating seniors, John Bravman, Bucknell’s president, told students that although the university is moving forward with plans to hold commencement in July, “we also must fully acknowledge that the threat of COVID-19 may continue into the summer months, rendering a July commencement untenable.”

Bravman said that any adjustments to the new date would be made no later than June 5.

Broadband funding application deadline extended a few weeks

Rural business, cooperatives and communities seeking to get broadband connections have been given extensions for funding, according to officials with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“In light of the COVID-19 national emergency, the department is extending the application deadline for round two of ReConnect Pilot Program funding to give rural businesses, cooperatives, and communities extra time to apply for this critical assistance that will help bring high-speed broadband connectivity to rural communities,” said Bette Brand, department deputy under secretary for rural development.

The applications have been extended to April 15, she said.

No office hours for Washington Township tax collector, use dropbox

There will be no office hours for Washington Township’s tax collector in April, due to the COVID 19 threat, a news release said.

Township residents are asked to use the tax drop box or mail in their payments. Residents who want receipts can enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope and are advised to make payments earlier than the last day of April to avoid delay of payment if there are errors with their checks. Residents may call Nancy Bashista, tax collector, at 570-547-1588 with questions or concerns.

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