Rotunda Ramblings - May 6, 2016

Rotunda Ramblings - May 6, 2016

We have a shorter-than-usual podcast this week to reflect the shortened session week, but the episode isn't short on analysis of upcoming budget negotiations, action on pension reform, and the legislative response to DEP's oil and gas regulations. 

We also have audio from Rep. Bill Adolph, Sen. Jay Costa, Rep. Mike Tobash, and Rep. John Maher.

CLICK HERE to listen.

Friday, May 6, 2016/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: Features
House pension reform proposal could soon be on the move

House pension reform proposal could soon be on the move

House Bill 727, legislation that would overhaul Pennsylvania’s public pension systems, could soon be on the move, sources tell The PLS Reporter.

Currently, the bill is on hold while the chamber awaits action by the Public Employee Retirement Commission to attach a note to a significant amendment by Rep. Mike Tobash (R-Schuylkill) that would alter the bill to provide for its key final components.

Monday, May 2, 2016/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Retirement commission muddles through despite legal sword of Damocles

Retirement commission muddles through despite legal sword of Damocles

The Public Employee Retirement Commission—the embattled panel responsible for municipal pension administration and reviewing proposed changes to state pension laws—held its first public meeting Thursday, despite attempts by Gov. Tom Wolf to defund its operations and spread its work throughout state government.

Thursday, March 17, 2016/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Budget impasse could maybe, possibly, perhaps be over this weekend

Budget impasse could maybe, possibly, perhaps be over this weekend

Hopes were higher than ever among some at Pennsylvania’s Capitol Friday with the news that Gov. Tom Wolf secured enough votes in both chambers to pass a revenue package that will fund the $30.8 billion budget plan agreed-to as part of the framework announced just before Thanksgiving.

"We are confident we have the votes to pass a revenue package," said Gov. Wolf's press secretary Jeff Sheridan. "We look forward to bringing this impasse to an end so we can fund our schools, balance the budget, begin to fix our deficit and move Pennsylvania forward."

Sheridan could not confirm the number of Republican or Democratic votes in the House—the chamber with the largest question mark in terms of tax increase support—that will be used to get a majority in the chamber.

Friday, December 18, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Latest budget deadline passes with little fanfare, leaves many questions

Latest budget deadline passes with little fanfare, leaves many questions

The deadline set by House Republican leaders for 12:30 p.m. on Thursday for Gov. Tom Wolf to prove to them he has the votes to get the revenue for the $30.788 billion budget agreed-to as part of the five-party budget framework came and went without much fanfare, but many House members were left with questions about what the final revenue package would entail.

Despite the stern message sent by House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) and House Majority Leader Dave Reed (R-Indiana) Wednesday night that if the governor did not come up with the votes the legislature would move forward with some sort of a stopgap budget, the Wolf administration Thursday morning said they were not fazed.

“It’s not something we’re taking seriously,” said Wolf administration spokesperson Jeff Sheridan of what he called an “artificial” deadline.

Reached later in the day, Sheridan said the governor had not met with House Republican leaders as of late afternoon Thursday and he is still meeting with rank-and-file members.

Thursday, December 17, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
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