Archive

‘We screwed it up’: PA retiree takes aim at pension reform

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

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Barry Shutt spent his Tuesday morning sitting on canvas chair in the East Wing Rotunda at the state Capitol, a prime place to catch lawmakers’ attention as they head to the … Read the rest

Pennsylvania officials mull when to charge more for public records

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

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Several years ago, when Elam Herr was planning an addition to his home, he submitted to the township plans that included installing a hot tub.

Soon, a pool and hot tub business … Read the rest

McCord’s guilty plea puts his public pension at risk

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

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — First, Rob McCord lost his bid to be Pennsylvania’s newest governor when he finished third in the Democratic primary and watched as nominee Tom Wolf unseated Republican incumbent Gov. Tom Corbett.… Read the rest

Déjà vu: Lawmakers return with another severance tax proposal

February 5, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — They’re back.

The same bipartisan group of state representatives that gathered a little more than a year ago to propose a 4.9 percent severance tax on the natural gas industry returned Wednesday … Read the rest

Constitutional amendment would allow older judges in PA

February 4, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — The countdown to the end of Ronald Castille’s career running the state’s highest court started the minute he turned 70 last March and couldn’t be stopped even though voters had retained him Read the rest

PA tax law wallops man who bought truck before moving

February 2, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. – When it came time last year to move his family back to Pennsylvania from North Carolina to care for aging relatives, Jeffrey Sutton bought a larger truck to haul their belongings.

Sutton … Read the rest

Proponents of raising PA’s minimum wage gain surprise GOP ally

January 28, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — State Sen. Christine Tartaglione has tried to raise the minimum wage so often, it could almost be called a tradition at the state Capitol.

Given that, it wasn’t a shock Tuesday to … Read the rest

Ousted open-records chief sues governor, wants job back

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

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — As snow flurries fell across the state capital Monday, Erik Arneson donned a Green Bay Packers parka and knit hat and went searching for a legal locksmith to get him back into … Read the rest

Wolf fires PA open records chief, who vows to stay on the job

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

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Erik Arneson is about to become volunteer executive director of the Office of Open Records. He’s refusing to leave the post after new Gov. Tom Wolf fired him Thursday.

Arneson told … Read the rest

PA lawmakers revive efforts to close union stalking loophole

January 22, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — A federal jury convicted a once prominent Philadelphia union official of arson, racketeering conspiracy and extortion this week, providing more fuel for lawmakers who want to close a loophole protecting individuals … Read the rest

Wolf bans gifts for executive branch first day as PA governor

January 21, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Not long after taking the oath of office, Gov. Tom Wolf made good on promises to instill two good-government protections.

Wolf immediately signed executive orders banning gifts for members of the executive … Read the rest

Lawmakers, advocacy groups pushing for civil asset forfeiture reform

January 14, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Lawmakers and advocacy groups are calling for changes to the civil asset forfeiture system to ensure the tenant of innocent until proven guilty applies when taking people’s property.

State Sen. Mike Read the rest

Florida governor looks to poach businesses from Pennsylvania

January 13, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is planning a trip to Philadelphia in February, and he’s hoping to lure some Pennsylvania businesses back south with him.

His pitch so far has focused on differences in the … Read the rest

Voting before Corbett leaves a ‘golden opportunity’ or ‘bad government’

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

SHIFTING POWER: Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Rep. Mike Turzai, left, R-Allegheny, is congratulated by Gov. Tom Corbett, right, as Democratic Gov.-elect Tom Wolf looks on, center, Tuesday at the state Capitol in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

 

By Andrew … Read the rest

ACLU lawsuit: PA law to silence offenders’ speech violates First Amendment

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

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania on Thursday made good on its promise to sue over a new state law that gives crime victims and prosecutors the power to silence … Read the rest

Reform activist calls for more timely audit of PA Legislature

January 8, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Eric Epstein wants to know how much of a financial reserve the state Legislature has squirreled away, and he wants the answer by the end of this month.

The coordinator of Rock … Read the rest

Want to be a state lawmaker? Take a drug test, PA rep says

January 7, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

State lawmakers took their oath of office Tuesday, solemnly promising to uphold the U.S. and Pennsylvania constitutions.

But it shouldn’t stop there, State Rep. John Lawrence, R-Chester says. They should swear to something else, … Read the rest

New year brings renewed optimism for reform in PA Legislature

January 1, 2015 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Rep. Brad Roae might be the most optimistic guy in the state House.

Roae, R-Crawford, has plans to push a trio of reform measures that would eliminate state cars for lawmakers, … Read the rest

PA lawmakers propose ways to modernize voter registration

December 26, 2014 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — In the age of Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat, Pennsylvania is stuck in the past century when it comes to voter registration.

Prospective voters can download the necessary form online, but can’t submit … Read the rest

Republican lawmaker renews effort to impeach Kane

December 23, 2014 | By | Posted in General News, Governor, Legislature

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent

HARRISBURG, Pa. — A state lawmaker Monday renewed efforts to impeach embattled Attorney General Kathleen Kane.

Rep. Daryl Metcalfe, R-Butler, tried to impeach Kane in the past legislative session and held a … Read the rest