Briefs – June 12

Published Jun 12, 2013 at 6:50 am (Updated Jun 9, 2013 at 11:25 am)

Thyroid cancer survivors sought

The Butterfly Bandits is looking for thyroid cancer survivors to participate in the butterfly release dedication at PNC Park on Sept. 15.

On that day, the Pittsburgh Pirates will hold a Thyroid Cancer Awareness Fundraiser: Tailgate and Cheer for a Cure to support research and bring awareness to the disease. Email chris.butterflybandits@gmail.com for details.

Electronics recycling event scheduled

Washington County Planning Commission will hold its annual electronics recycling collection event from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. June 15 at the Washington County Fairgrounds.

The electronics waste will be collected by JVS Environmental of Rockwood, which will ensure the accepted waste is properly recycled.

Items to be collected include computer monitors, computer towers and bases, mice, keyboards and speakers, notebook computers, printers, copiers, fax machines, telephone equipment, televisions, answering machines, radios and typewriters. All items will be collected free of charge.

Four- and eight-foot fluorescent tubes and compact fluorescent lights will be accepted at a charge of $1 per bulb. Lab and testing equipment containing hazardous materials will not be accepted, and anyone with more than 20 items must call in advance to make arrangements.

For more information, call the Washington County Planning Commission at 724-228-6811 or visit www.co.washington.pa.us.

Neuman introduces legislation

State Rep. Brandon Neuman, D-North Strabane Township, introduced legislation in the state House of Representatives this week to combat health care waste, fraud and abuse.

House Bill 1493, the Pennsylvania False Claims Act, was introduced by Neuman and state Rep. Tony DeLuca. More than 30 Democratic and Republican House members already co-sponsor the bill.

“Pennsylvanians lose as much as $200 million a year through Medicare and Medicaid fraud and abuse,” Neuman said. “Our Pennsylvania False Claims Act legislation – House Bill 1493 – would go a long way toward deterring this dishonesty.”

The bill will allow for a unique private and public partnership with citizens who have knowledge of wrongdoings by vendors benefiting from state money. The whistleblowers would also be authorized to initiate false claims actions.

Neuman said an important ally, state Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane, also supports the initiative. Under the legislation, the state attorney general would have primary responsibility for investigating and prosecuting false claims actions.

“The bill would increase the commonwealth’s share of recovery under a successful Medicaid fraud lawsuit by 10 percent via a federal incentive program,” Neuman said. “More than half of the states and the District of Columbia have false claims acts, and implementing one in Pennsylvania would provide a new source of revenue while punishing those who steal taxpayer dollars.”

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