In major criminal justice reform, Pennsylvania becomes first state in nation to seal minor misdemeanors

In major criminal justice reform, Pennsylvania becomes first state in nation to seal minor misdemeanors

It was a motley crew of lawmakers that gathered two years ago to first bring up the idea of a bill to give people who have committed misdemeanors or lesser crimes a fresh start after paying their dues to society.

“Two Republicans from Central Pennsylvania, two Democrats from Philadelphia — what could we possibly have in common,” Rep. Sheryl Delozier (R-Cumberland), one of those members, asked. “But we made it work.”

Thursday, June 28, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
Wolf increases minimum wage for state empoyees

Wolf increases minimum wage for state empoyees

The lowest paid state worker is about to get a $1.80 an hour raise by Sunday.

Gov. Tom Wolf issued an executive order Thursday to increase the minimum wage for state employees to $12 an hour by July 1. From there, the wage will increase yearly by 50 cents until 2024 before leveling off at $15 an hour.

Thursday, June 28, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
While Republicans celebrate free speech, labor allies push new legislation post-Janus

While Republicans celebrate free speech, labor allies push new legislation post-Janus

In a decision that could have implications for years going forward, the US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that public employees do not have to pay agency fees to their workplace’s union.

The case, brought by Illinois state employee Mark Janus against the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees local, overturned an earlier SCOTUS ruling that said public workplace unions could mandate employees pay into the union to cover collective bargaining and other workplace related expenses.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
Governor signs budget eight days ahead of deadline in bipartisan deal heavy on education

Governor signs budget eight days ahead of deadline in bipartisan deal heavy on education

In the span of a week, Pennsylvania moved a budget from the backrooms of the legislature to governor’s desk — where it was signed into law early this evening.

Gov. Tom Wolf signed the state’s $32.7 billion dollar budget with $560 million in increased spending and no new taxes Friday night after it passed both chambers in a whirlwind week.

Friday, June 22, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
Wagner apologizes in farewell address to Senate as focus turns to general election

Wagner apologizes in farewell address to Senate as focus turns to general election

Wagner, who won the GOP primary in mid-May over health care consultant Paul Mango and attorney Laura Ellsworth, gave a subdued, conciliatory farewell address on the Senate Floor to mark the day.

In it, he celebrated his surprising arrival via a write-in victory in a 2014 special election, and thanked his colleagues on both sides of the aisle for working with him on myriad issues. He also apologized for times when his fiery personality may have caused offense.
Monday, June 4, 2018/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
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