Hennessey's Office to Help Coatesville Arson Victims Apply for Compensation
1/30/2009
Lawmaker is listening to residents, staying in contact with law enforcement personnel
 
While attending a public meeting Wednesday night at Gordon Elementary School where local residents voiced their opinions about the string of arson fires in Coatesville, State Rep. Tim Hennessey (R-Coatesville) announced his plans to work with a state commission to help the victims of the fires navigate the judicial process and apply for the financial resources they are entitled to under the law.
 
“I attended the meeting because people deserve to know that their elected leaders are listening,” Hennessey said. “They also deserve to know that we are doing whatever we can to address the situation. I have been in contact with local law enforcement personnel. As a state lawmaker, I’m not in charge of the criminal investigation. But, there are still things my office can do to help people, and we’re doing them.”
 
Hennessey has asked representatives from the Office of Victims’ Services (OVS) from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) to make themselves available in his district office to escort victims through the judicial process and apply for the financial resources to which they are entitled under the law.  OVS staff members will be at Hennessey’s Coatesville district office, located at 1038 East Lincoln Highway, on Monday from 9 a.m. until noon. Arson victims can call Hennessey’s office at 610-380-8600 for more information or to set up an appointment.
 
“I have asked the OVS to use my district office as a staging area to meet with the victims of the Coatesville fires,” Hennessey said. “They have agreed to help the arson victims apply for aid through the Victims Compensation Assistance Program.”
 
The Victims Compensation Assistance Program (VCAP) helps victims of crime in Pennsylvania with expenses related to a crime. Eligible expenses include medical costs, counseling, loss of earnings, loss of support, stolen cash benefit, relocation expenses, crime scene cleanup and funeral expenses. Victims must meet eligibility requirements to apply for the program.
 
“We all have a job to do right now,” Hennessey said. “The police and detectives need to catch the perpetrators of these crimes. The firefighters need to continue doing their brave work to combat the fires. Local citizens need to be attentive and alert law enforcement personnel with any tips. And I will continue to do my part by finding ways to help the victims. This is a community problem and we must work together as a community to address it.”
 
More information about the PCCD and VCAP may be obtained by visiting pccd.state.pa.us.
 
Rep. Tim Hennessey
26th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

(610) 380-8600
(717) 787-3431
RepHennessey.com
Contact: Dan Massing
(717) 772-9845