Rep. Gabler holds open house

State Rep. Matt Gabler (R-Clearfield/Elk) held a Christmas open house at his district office in St. Marys on Thursday afternoon from 4 to 6 p.m. Attendees not only had the opportunity to speak to Gabler about various issues, but they also had the chance to learn about some of the services his office offers to area residents. Gabler noted that people come to the office for a wide range of reasons, including questions they have relating to state government or other government agencies. "The great thing is that most times if people have a question about state government, they have that question once. We get that question, whatever that question is, probably multiple times a week, so we can hook people up with the appropriate agencies," Gabler said. Additionally, Gabler explained that the close ties between staff and Congressman Glenn "GT" Thompson's staff also provides benefits for area residents. "Being that our congressman covers 17 counties, sometimes it can be kind of a drive to get to one of his offices, but we've been able to build such a great rapport with Congressman Thompson's office we can hook people up with federal agencies as well by working through him," Gabler said. Gabler added that even if his staff does not readily have an answer available, they always make their best effort to point people in the right direction to find the information. "If they come in and the question is about a county agency or it is about a federal agency, we're not going to turn people away. We're going to help provide at least a phone number, if not a phone call, over to that agency and help them get hooked up to the people they need to talk to," Gabler said. Gabler also remarked that he has received a lot of positive feedback about the easy accessibility of his office, which is located at 53 South St. Marys St., St. Marys. "We get lots of walk-in traffic," Gabler said. "The feedback I've gotten is that people love the location here with the off-street parking in downtown St. Marys. Even in the other towns around the district, people seem to like this spot in St. Marys because it's easy to get to, whether you're coming from Johnsonburg or Ridgway."For residents in Gabler's district who cannot make the trip to St. Marys for whatever reason, his staff also frequently offers satellite office hours in a number of neighboring communities. According to Gabler, those satellite hours are held about once a month in Ridgway, Johnsonburg, Wilcox and Weedville. For more on this story, see the Dec. 18 edition of The Daily Press.