Archive

Feds may disallow PA’s managed care providers tax, could ask repayment of $1.7B

June 3, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Pennsylvania may have to repay $1.7 billion to the federal government and may not be allowed to continue levying a tax on managed care providers to help fund Medicaid programs.

The inspector general for Read the rest

Pension overhaul could save $11B over 30 years but offers no immediate relief

May 29, 2014 | By | Posted in Legislature

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

An effort to overhaul Pennsylvania’s public sector pension plans got a key thumbs-up Wednesday but still faces several hurdles and would do little to solve the short-term pension problems in this year’s state budget.… Read the rest

Three explanations for Allyson Schwartz’ primary election nightmare

May 22, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

The autopsy of U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz’ gubernatorial hopes is complete.

Post-election reporting laws require us to tell you that Schwartz was, at one time, considered the frontrunner in a Democratic field that did … Read the rest

PA’s closed primary system shuts out independent voters

May 20, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | Watchdog.org

Voters are heading to the polls in Pennsylvania.

Well, actually, only voters who are registered with political parties who have races on the ballot are welcome at the polls Tuesday — in other words, just … Read the rest

Corporate tax questions dog Wolf in final days before PA primary

May 19, 2014 | By | Posted in Features

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

A day before the Democratic gubernatorial primary election, there’s no reason Tom Wolf would want to trade places with any of his fellow candidates.

But being the frontrunner comes with certain drawbacks.

Wolf holds … Read the rest

Cops can now search your car without a warrant

May 14, 2014 | By | Posted in Features

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

If the police stop you in Pennsylvania, they don’t need a warrant to search your car.

And soon, you could be in trouble even if they find nothing.

The state Supreme Court ruled last … Read the rest

Dems make another push for PA Medicaid expansion

May 8, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Democratic lawmakers are again looking for a way to pressure Gov. Tom Corbett and majority Republicans into accepting the Medicaid expansion portion of the Affordable Care Act.

State Rep. Pam DeLissio, D-Philadelphia, said Wednesday … Read the rest

PA lawmakers get stern warnings from three major credit rating agencies

May 5, 2014 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Eric Boehm | PA Indepenent

Once is a fluke, twice can be a coincidence.

But three times is a trend.

During the past two weeks, all three major credit rating agencies have issued stern warnings to Pennsylvania policymakers in … Read the rest

FBI document details alleged misdeeds of Philly union boss

April 30, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

A state judge this week unsealed documents from a 2006 FBI investigation into infamous Philadelphia union boss John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty.

The document is a sworn affidavit by FBI Special Agent Kathleen O’Hanlon, … Read the rest

Why something called an ARC matters so much to Pennsylvania’s pension mess and credit rating

April 25, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Pennsylvania’s debt outlook remains negative because the state still underfunds its pension systems and is unlikely to fully fund them in the coming years.

Fitch’s, a credit ratings agency, gave that sobering view of … Read the rest

Bucking national trend, Schwartz bets big on her backing of Obamacare

April 22, 2014 | By | Posted in General News

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

In a new campaign ad, U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz touts her role in passing the Affordable Care Act and promises to accept federal cash for Medicaid expansion if she is elected Pennsylvania’s governor.

The … Read the rest

Week in Review: Tax breaks discussed on Tax Day

April 18, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By PA Independent Staff

This week brought Tax Day proposition to give tax breaks to small businesses, more pension woes for a Pennsylvania city and the story of a family hoping to win the lottery when it comes to their … Read the rest

Conservative challenger to Corbett remains on ballot after legal challenge

April 16, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Bob Guzzardi, the conservative Republican activist who is challenging incumbent Gov. Tom Corbett in next month’s primary election, on Tuesday won the right to remain on the ballot.

Four Republican voters challenged the legitimacy … Read the rest

Johnstown hands out excessive pensions as it deals with $24M in debt

April 14, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Johnstown is deep in pension debt, but is handing out retirement payments in excess of what is allowed under state law.

A recent audit of the city’s four pension funds found more than $24 Read the rest

McCord’s outsourcing record leaves him walking a thin line

April 8, 2014 | By | Posted in General News

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Rob McCord, Pennsylvania’s state treasurer and a Democratic candidate for governor, is defending his former role as the leader of a business group that helped companies outsource jobs during the 1990s and early 2000s.… Read the rest

PA Senate gives unanimous support to ‘union stalking’ bill, but now the House has concerns

April 8, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

The state Senate voted unanimously Monday to close a loophole in state law that exempts individuals engaged in a labor dispute from being charged with the crime of stalking.

The bill needs another vote … Read the rest

Corbett, Democratic opponents try to top one another with calls for gift ban

April 4, 2014 | By | Posted in Features

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

The next governor of Pennsylvania might have to look the gift horse in the mouth.

After a string of apparent ethics violations across two branches of state government, Gov. Tom Corbett and the various … Read the rest

Republican-led county governments making push for ‘paycheck protection’

April 3, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

A conservative effort to end automatic union dues deductions from public workers’ paychecks is gaining some stream in Republican-controlled county governments across Pennsylvania.

Last week, Blair County in western Pennsylvania became the eighth county Read the rest

Higher vehicle and driver fees kick in today

April 1, 2014 | By | Posted in WatchBlog

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Get ready to pay a little more to keep your car on the road in Pennsylvania.

Vehicle registrations, drivers’ license renewals and dozens of other fees imposed by the state Department of Transportation will … Read the rest

Philadelphia economic development program audit finds poor results, bad record keeping

March 28, 2014 | By | Posted in General News

By Eric Boehm | PA Independent

Dotted across Philadelphia are nearly 3,000 acres where businesses get a free pass on paying state and local taxes.

But the investment in special tax breaks is not paying off for the city.

These … Read the rest