Archive

In privatization debate, lawmaker wants to avoid mixing liquor, beer policies

April 9, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Liquor before beer, and you’re in the clear. It might not be just an old drinking saying anymore.

In fact, it’s almost the same philosophy state Sen. Scott Wagner, R-York, is … Read the rest

Homecare worker, patient challenge Wolf’s order that paves way for unionization

April 8, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Direct-care worker Don Lambrecht has looked after David Smith, a home-bound quadriplegic, for the last quarter century, more than enough time for the two to develop a friendship that goes beyond the … Read the rest

Despite setback, paycheck protection still alive in state Senate

April 6, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — A united front of Democrats paired with a group of five Republicans more sympathetic to organized labor has left so-called paycheck protection legislation in a perilous spot, but the math still says … Read the rest

Philadelphia schools tread on rocky fiscal footing

April 3, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Legislature

By Evan Grossman | Watchdog.org

PHILADELPHIA — If the School District of Philadelphia gets every penny it expects from increased state and local funding, massive investments in city schools will only temporarily solve the district’s financial woes.

Another reason for … Read the rest

Wolf looks to liquor stores in plan to pay down pension debt

March 23, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

Pennsylvania’s has billions of dollars of pension debt, and it’s hoping its state-owned liquor stores could help pick up the tab.

Gov. Tom Wolf wants to use increased revenue from modernizing the state-owned wine … Read the rest

GOP state lawmaker calls for open union negotiations

March 20, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

State Sen. Ryan Aument wants to shine a light into Pennsylvania’s figurative back room.

The Lancaster County Republican introduced a bill that would amend the state’s open-meetings law to require public notice and access … Read the rest

Bills aim to protect Pennsylvania’s best teachers

March 19, 2015 | By | Posted in Legislature

By Evan Grossman | Watchdog.org

Twin bills seek to eliminate the fat-cat mentality protecting weak Pennsylvania teachers from layoffs because they’ve been on the job longer than some of their more talented peers.

HIGH STANDARDS: Rep. Stephen Bloom, R-Cumberland, introduced

Read the rest

Total cost of Pennsylvania’s proposed budget: $78.6 billion

March 18, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania could own a bunch of professional sports team if it wanted.

OK, maybe we’re taking some liberty with that, but there is some math to back it up. If Gov. Tom Wolf’sRead the rest

Wolf proposes slight funding increase for state Ethics Commission

March 12, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Gov. Tom Wolf has opened up his daily calendar, banned gifts for executive branch staff and ended no-bid contracts for private law firms in an attempt to improve ethics and transparency … Read the rest

Philadelphia DA charges 3 more in once-abandoned sting operation

March 11, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Attorney General Kathleen Kane scuttled a probe that caught several Philadelphia Democrats accepting money. The case, she said, was tainted by racism and too flawed to prosecute.

But after taking over … Read the rest

Free-market group: Wolf’s budget would cost families $1,400

March 10, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Louise Bell is 90, she has dementia and has lived in a nursing home for five years. She gets Social Security, but most of her money came from selling her home of … Read the rest

Lawmaker fears proposed property tax cuts could be temporary

March 4, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Homeowners probably cheered Tuesday when Gov. Tom Wolf unveiled a $3.8 billion property tax relief plan he said would return an average of $1,000 to them, but some lawmakers don’t believe the … Read the rest

Small businesses feel like ‘big losers’ in Wolf’s budget

March 4, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Dale Kaplan already faces a stiff challenge from Jos. A. Bank and its wrinkle-free shirts. Now, the owner of a Camp Hill dry-cleaning service is feeling the pressure from his state … Read the rest

GOP lawmakers again trying to limit state spending

March 3, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Gov. Tom Wolf is expected to present his first budget proposal Tuesday, and lawmakers are waiting to see how much the new governor wants to spend.

SPENDING SAFEGUARDS: Republican state lawmakers have

Read the rest

Liquor privatization faces uncertain future after passing House

March 2, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — For the second straight legislative session, state House Republicans say it’s time to privatize liquor and wine stores.

One key lawmaker is proclaiming the government monopoly on adult beverages is destined to … Read the rest

Report: Wolf considering sales tax increase

February 27, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Just days before Gov. Tom Wolf gives his budget address, Pennsylvanians are riding a seesaw of tax policy announcements and rumors.

A report from KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh citing unnamed sources says Wolf Read the rest

Wolf wants to cut corporate tax but doesn’t say how he’ll replace revenue

February 26, 2015 | By | Posted in Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — For most of February, Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration was telling anybody with questions about the upcoming budget address they would have to wait until next week to learn more.

Then, during a … Read the rest

FL gov. visits PA to tout Sunshine State but says little about tax incentives

February 24, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

PHILADELPHIA – Florida Gov. Rick Scott has brazenly proclaimed his plans to lure businesses from Pennsylvania, his pitch hitting on low taxes and business-friendly policies.

The Republican governor, in Philadelphia on Monday, wasn’t so direct regarding taxpayer-funded perks to … Read the rest

Tax policies make PA a ‘target’ for business poachers like Florida’s governor

February 19, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

SPRING GARDEN TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Florida Gov. Rick Scott will visit Pennsylvania next week in an attempt to lure job creators south, and policymakers here have given him a heckuva weapon to use against the … Read the rest

PA business community waits to learn more about Wolf’s income tax plan

February 16, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

Gov. Tom Wolf has already proposed a severance tax on the natural gas industry, but so far his administration has been silent on another tax policy he talked up during the campaign: changing the … Read the rest