Tuesday, February 5, 2013
The governor has raised funding in some areas but at least some opponents don't feel the budget addresses important issues.
Gov. Tom Corbett delivered highlights of his proposed 2013-14 budget in a speech before the state Legislature on Tuesday morning. The $28.4 billion state budget plan, a 2.4 percent increase over this year, includes no general tax increases. In one of the most controversial areas, Corbett recommended against expanding Medicaid, as provided for under the Affordable Health Care Act. Corbett plans to ask the federal government for flexibililty to let Pennsylvania customize the health insurance program for its needs or have the state reject the Medicaid expansion. Under the act, also known as Obamacare, Medicaid could expand to cover people earning up to 133 percent of the poverty level and provide coverage for upwards of 600,000 uninsured …
Thursday, January 31, 2013
The governor says $1 billion in funding will be used to create the "Passport for Learning Block Grant" to create greater flexibility in schools.
On Wednesday, Gov. Tom Corbett announced plans to privatize the liquor system in Pennsylvania and committed $1 billion in proceeds from the process to education funding. The governor said the money will be used to create the Passport for Learning Block Grant, which will provide flexibility to schools and allow public educators, not Harrisburg, decide what students need. The grant will focus on four priority areas: school safety, enhanced early education programs, individualized learning and science, technology, engineering and mathematics courses and programs. “Our proposal is part of my commitment to changing Harrisburg, streamlining government and moving Pennsylvania forward,” Corbett said. “Our plan gives consumers what they want by …
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
In the wake of recent mass shootings in Newtown, CT. and elsewhere, Patch examines the recent history of gun-control legislation in Pennsylvania.
On the books, Pennsylvania's gun laws are somewhat tougher than those found elsewhere in the United States, according to the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. The gun-control group gives Pennsylvania a 25 out of a possible 100-point rating on its state scorecard—the 10th-strictest rating in the country. "While Pennsylvania has some common-sense gun laws, including the requirement of Brady criminal background checks on all handgun purchasers, more needs to be done to stop illegal gun trafficking," according to the Brady Center website. Current Law In Pennsylvania, a person does not need a license to "open-carry" a gun by wearing it in a holster or in similar fashion anywhere but in Philadelphia, state police spokeswoman Diana Bates told…
Sunday, December 9, 2012
This week, some state House Democrats voiced their opposition to Gov. Corbett's plan to award a contract to privatize the lottery to Camelot Group—with no other bidders in the running.
The Pennsylvania Lottery is one of the most successful and well-managed state lotteries in the nation. Last year, the PA Lottery had annual sales in excess of $3.2 billion and, according to House Democrats, has held administrative costs to record lows of just over 2 percent. According to DailyFinance.com, Pennsylvania State Lottery has steered $20.6 billion to a variety of causes since it began, but its profits have primarily been funneled into an elderly benefits fund. This fund includes subsidies for transportation, tax rebates and Medicare. As of last year, about 61 percent of the annual ticket sales go to prizes, 30 percent goes to the state and the rest is for expenses. That's a higher percentage of prize return than most other states…
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Pennsylvania voters elect their first woman and first Democrat to be the state's attorney general.
Kathleen Kane achieved two firsts in her Pennsylvania attorney general election victory: She defeated Republican David Freed 56 to 41 percent in unofficial results from Tuesday's voting. Kane won the support of Lehigh Valley voters on her way to statewide success: Lehigh County Northampton County Kane, 46, is a former Lackawanna County prosecutor who will now oversee an office with a staff of about 700 and subject to legislative battles over a budget that now stands at $81 million, according to a Philly.com report. Kane had a slight fundraising edge in the race. Both candidates pledged a review of the Jerry Sandusky child rape case and its handling by former Attorney General Tom Corbett, now the state's governor.
Thursday, August 11, 2011
Day Tripper recommends you pack up family and head to Butler for this big weekend event.
The little, mighty Jeep is known around the world for being a pint-sized workhorse. General Dwight D. Eisenhower reportedly said that the Jeep was the tool that turned World War II in America's favor. But did you know the Jeep was invented right in our own backyards in Butler? This weekend marks the 70th anniversary of the invention of the Jeep. In honor of this amazing, funny-looking car, The Butler County Tourism & Convention Bureau will play host to the first Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival Aug. 12–14. For the inaugural event, the bureau has pulled out all the stops. There are so many reasons to attend the festival that I don’t even know where to begin. Up first is what could be a record-making Jeep parade at 6 p.m. Friday. “We hope to …
Sunday, August 7, 2011
Here's a look at other Patch headlines this week from around our region's three rivers.
Naming the First Dogs of Pennsylvania is no easy task. Just ask 4-year-old Michael Santicola. The Moon preschooler had a hand in naming Gov. Tom Corbett's recently adopted pair of Airedale terrier pups. Michael's mother, Michele Santicola, said her family learned last month while watching a local news broadcast that the governor was holding a naming contest for the dogs. More than 500 children under age 12 participated in the contest in addition to Michael and his 7-year-old sister. "We talked about names that had to do with Pennsylvania," Santicola said. "My daughter learned that the [mountain] laurel was the state flower, so she suggested Laurel as a name. My son thought of Harry for Harrisburg." It was Harry that stuck. This week, Gov…