Scarnati drops opposition to seating Williams on swearing in day, but keeps her residency an open question

Scarnati drops opposition to seating Williams on swearing in day, but keeps her residency an open question

A top Senate Republican said in a statement Friday he was dropping his opposition to the seating of a Democratic Senator-elect, having previously questioned the residency requirement.

Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson) said in a release that he recommends his caucus seat Lindsey Williams as the elected Senator of the north Pittsburgh suburban 38th District. However, he left open reexamining her residency if new documentation emerged.

Williams, a teachers’ union official, defeated Jeremy Shaffer, a local township commissioner, for the seat formerly held by Sen. Randy Vulakovich (R-Allegheny). Shaffer bested Vulakovich in the May primary. Williams went on to win the general by 800 votes.
Friday, December 28, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
Final pension commission report aims for three times the required savings with centralized investment office, transparency

Final pension commission report aims for three times the required savings with centralized investment office, transparency

Taking 18,000 pages of notes over seven months of work, the state’s public pension review commission issued seven suggestions Thursday, that they hope could save Pennsylvania as much as $10 billion over the next 30 years.

The commission, led by chair Rep. Mike Tobash (R-Schuylkill) and vice-chair State Treasurer Joe Torsella, was mandated by the 2017 pension bill.

Among its suggestions were a central investment office for the state’s two pension systems, consistently full pension contributions from the state and added transparency measures from the State Employee Retirement System and the Public School Employees Retirement System.
Thursday, December 20, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
Republicans recoil from tepid Wolf stance on marijuana legalization

Republicans recoil from tepid Wolf stance on marijuana legalization

While taking questions from the public online this week, Gov. Tom Wolf added some daylight to his views on recreational marijuana.

The Democratic governor, who just won his reelection campaign, had historically been hesitant to back legalizing cannabis for non-medical use.

Thursday, December 20, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
“Let us stand strong together”: Inside Philadelphia and the southeast’s ascension in the House Democratic caucus

“Let us stand strong together”: Inside Philadelphia and the southeast’s ascension in the House Democratic caucus

It was an opportunity too good to pass up.

As House Democratic leadership elections approached November 13, two of the top positions, Whip and Appropriations Chair, sat open due to retirements of their Western Pennsylvania holders. Meanwhile, Caucus Chair also was vacant as its holder maneuvered for a higher position.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Driving without cleaning car of snow and ice could be fineable offense under Boscola proposal

Driving without cleaning car of snow and ice could be fineable offense under Boscola proposal

Between a clouded windshield, nervous drivers and slick conditions, driving in winter has enough hazards without someone who left a hat of snow and ice on their vehicle.

Pennsylvania already has laws that make it a fine if the frozen debris falls on another driver and leads to death or serious injury, passed in 2006.

Sen. Lisa Boscola (D-Northampton) was a champion of the legislation then, and “icy missiles” coming off of trucks on I-78 or I-80 have cost her a side mirror. More than that, snow falling off a truck even cost a constituent of Boscola’s their life over a decade ago on Christmas Eve.
Tuesday, December 18, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
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