Sen. Wagner: “Tom Wolf is trying to play the CEO of the Pennsylvania Corporation”

Sen. Wagner: “Tom Wolf is trying to play the CEO of the Pennsylvania Corporation”

Sen. Scott Wagner (R-York) sounded off on a number of issues at Monday’s Pennsylvania Press Club luncheon including his views on public pension reform, liquor privatization, education funding, and special interests.

Sen. Wagner also had some very pointed remarks about Gov. Tom Wolf, a fellow York County businessman whom he has known for a number of years.

Asked if Gov. Wolf is governing as he would expect, Sen. Wagner said he is not.

“Tom Wolf is a nice guy. Tom Wolf I believe is trying to play CEO of the Pennsylvania Corporation,” he said. “It’s almost like: ‘If you need me come get me.’”

Monday, June 22, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Conditions already placed on use of fairer education funding formula?

Conditions already placed on use of fairer education funding formula?

Bipartisanship and cheer abounded at the Capitol Thursday for those taking part in the bipartisan Basic Education Funding Commission, which included representatives from all four legislative caucuses and the governor’s office, when they unanimously released their long-anticipated funding formula recommendations and other education funding suggestions.

The commission’s recommended funding formula was described as taking into account both student-based and district-based factors that are aimed at providing funding that is truly representative of a district’s needs and unique situation.

However, while many are anticipating swift action on legislative implementation of the commission’s recommendations, some are already putting preconditions on when it would be best to implement the new funding formula.

“There are certainly a group of struggling school districts it would take a number of years back to a basic, functional school district and that—in our view—is not an acceptable funding decision with new resources for the 15-16 fiscal year,” said Budget Secretary Randy Albright, a member of the commission.

Thursday, June 18, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Tight lips and mixed reactions follow Tuesday budget meeting

Tight lips and mixed reactions follow Tuesday budget meeting

Following Tuesday’s weekly budget meeting between Gov. Tom Wolf and legislative Republican leadership, negotiators remained silent as to possible areas of potential agreement, but offered mixed reaction as to the progress of the ongoing negotiations surrounding the budget and related major pieces of legislation.

Tuesday’s discussions lasted about 30 minutes.

First out of the meeting to catch up with reporters was House Majority Leader Dave Reed (R-Indiana) who relayed that talks are still progressing on the big issues.

“Certainly, sometimes these meetings are more going through an update on what staff has been meeting on in the working groups,” he said. “We’re still plowing ahead.”

Tuesday, June 16, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Marcus Brown saga ends as Acting Commissioner withdraws name from further consideration

Marcus Brown saga ends as Acting Commissioner withdraws name from further consideration

The ongoing saga surrounding the failed confirmation and potential renomination of Acting State Police Commissioner Col. Marcus Brown ended Monday when the Wolf administration announced Col. Brown has withdrawn his name from further consideration for the position.

"It has been an honor leading the State Police, and the men and women of this organization are of the highest caliber. I thank Gov. Wolf for this opportunity," Col. Brown said in a statement. "I will remain as acting commissioner until Gov. Wolf selects a new nominee.”

Gov. Wolf, in accepting the withdrawal, noted Col. Brown’s experience while chiding the Senate for rejecting his nomination.

“Marcus Brown is the type of leader that Pennsylvania would be lucky to have," Gov. Wolf said in a statement. "Despite Marcus’ vast and unquestioned qualifications, the Senate wrongfully rejected his nomination in a move that put politics above the best interests of the people of Pennsylvania, and it is now appropriate to select a new nominee to lead the Pennsylvania State Police."

Monday, June 15, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views

Arneson to resume Open Records director post for the time

Gov. Tom Wolf announced Monday that his administration would not oppose the motion to lift the stay of the Commonwealth Court’s order of last week reinstating Erik Arneson as head of the Office of Open Records, while his office appeals the decisions.

In cases of an appeal, there is an automatic stay of the lower court’s order unless lifted.

After the Commonwealth Court held that Gov. Wolf exceeded his authority in firing Arneson in February, the Wolf administration stated their intention to appeal. When Arneson showed up to work at the Office of Open Records after the court order, he was turned away pending the appeal.

The decision Monday effectively reinstates Arneson to the post for which he was hired by Gov. Tom Corbett and later fired from by Gov. Wolf.

Monday, June 15, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
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