Another Moderate PA Republican May Hit The Road

One of the most middle-of-the-road Republicans in Pennsylvania’s state House may be taking his leave. Gene DiGirolamo is running for Bucks County Commissioner this year. If he wins, he’ll join a lengthening list of southeastern GOP-ers heading out of Harrisburg.

More PA Republicans Are Softening Their Opposition To Minimum Wage Hike

One of Governor Tom Wolf’s perennially-unsuccessful policy suggestions may face better odds this year. A day after Senate GOP Leader Jake Corman said his caucus would be willing to consider increasing the state minimum wage, a high-ranking House Republican said the prospect isn’t out of the question for his caucus either. 

Is This The Year PA Gives LGBTQ+ People Discrimination Protection?

Like most states, Pennsylvania has a statute that grants certain groups of people extra legal protection against discrimination. It’s called the Human Relations Act, and it prohibits employment and housing discrimination on the basis of “race, color, religious creed, ancestry, age, sex, national origin, handicap or disability,” or use of guide and support animals. One group it misses? LGBTQ+ people.

Senators Air Voting Machine Grievances To PA Officials

Last year, Governor Tom Wolf gave counties a mandate: replace their voting machines with ones that leave a paper trail in time for the 2020 primary election. That move was based on concerns that many of the aging machines are difficult to double-check in the event an election’s integrity is questioned.

What’s Within Reach In The PA Governor’s Budget Plan, And What’s Not

There weren’t many surprises in Governor Tom Wolf’s latest budget proposal to the Republican-controlled House and Senate. The​ Democratic governor spent the first three, deficit-plagued years of his tenure repeatedly clashing with legislative leaders over his attempts to raise certain taxes. Then, ahead of his reelection campaign last summer, he opted for a light-on-taxes plan and avoided an impasse.

PA Police Now Limited In Flagging Undocumented Immigrants To ICE

Last year, ProPublica and The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that the Pennsylvania State Police had no guidelines preventing troopers from engaging in behavior that raised questions of racial profiling and unlawful arrests. That behavior is now forbidden in Pennsylvania,

PA Budget Would Add $400-Million To Human Services

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s $34.1 billion proposal includes a $400 million increase to the Department of Human Services. That takes the total ask to $12.9 billion for the agency, which administers an array of programs such as medical assistance, food assistance and mental health and substance abuse services. 

PA Auditor General Continues Child Welfare Review With Look At Obscure Agency

Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale is launching a review of a little-known government agency that hears appeals to cases of child abuse and neglect. The review is a continuation of DePasquale’s work focusing on the commonwealth’s child welfare system. A 2016 audit found the state’s hotline for reporting child abuse and neglect was so understaffed, tens of thousands of calls went unanswered.

Four More Years Of Governor Wolf

With newly sworn-in Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman at his side, flanked by legislative leaders and former governors Tom Ridge and Mark Schweiker, Wolf centered his inaugural speech on Pennsylvania’s place in the country.

PA Updates Plan To Fight Opioid Addiction

Pennsylvania officials renewed their plans to respond to the opioid crisis that claimed 5,456 lives in the commonwealth in 2017. While some plans discussed at a Monday press conference are continuations of ongoing programs, officials did mention a few new or recent efforts.

Experts Caution Against Planned Federal Rule Change For Employer Health Care

The public comments period ended Friday for a proposed federal rule that would allow more employers to use health reimbursement arrangements–untaxed funds that employers could set aside for employees to use on health care expenses. Most employers are currently prohibited from using the arrangements, which are also known as HRAs. 

Efficiencies, Pipelines Help Propel PA Gas Production In 2018

Natural gas production in Pennsylvania is expected to reach a new high by year’s end: 6 trillion cubic feet. Drillers extracted 13 percent more gas in the first three quarters of 2018 than during the same period the previous year, according to a recent report from the state’s Independent Fiscal Office.

Burden On PA Taxpayers Is About The National Average

Pennsylvania’s Independent Fiscal Office released a new report this week comparing state and local tax effort to the rest of the country. The overall burden felt by Pennsylvania residents sits at about the national average.

PA Study: Pipeline Blast Could Be Devastating, But Risk Is Low

A worst-case explosion of the Mariner East 2 pipeline in PA’s Delaware County would kill anyone within about a mile of the rupture, a new report says, but it concludes the chances of someone dying from a pipeline incident are less than that of dying in a car crash or from falling down stairs.

Report: Slight Decrease In Uninsured Children In Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania’s population of uninsured children decreased slightly amid a nationwide increase in uninsured children.  For the first time in at least 8 years, the number of uninsured children rose in the U.S., according to a study from Georgetown University Center for Children and Families. 

Immigrant Rights Group Claims Victory In PA’s Midterm

READING, PA (WITF) — An advocacy group for Latino and immigrant rights in Pennsylvania is claiming victory in Tuesday’s midterm elections. The crowd at the Make the Road Action in PA offices in Reading burst into song at the news Democrats were projected to hold on to the governor’s office and a U.S. Senate seat. “Venceremos,” they sang, “we will win.”