Gov. Wolf names Marcus Brown as Director of Homeland Security

Gov. Wolf names Marcus Brown as Director of Homeland Security

Gov. Tom Wolf Thursday named Col. Marcus Brown as his Director of Homeland Security.

Col. Brown was once Gov. Wolf’s pick to lead the Pennsylvania State Police, but his nomination failed to be confirmed by the Senate in June.

Gov. Wolf names Col. Brown to the office that has been vacant since the end of the Corbett administration and is responsible for securing the Commonwealth against terrorist attacks and coordinating these efforts within agencies across state government and the federal government.

The director’s position is not subject to Senate confirmation.

According to the February 2012 executive order creating the office, "The Office of Homeland Security shall be managed by a Director, appointed by the Governor. The Director shall report to the Homeland Security Advisor and to the Governor’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Public Safety. The Director shall be assisted by personnel deemed necessary to allow the Office of Homeland Security to carry out its responsibilities."

Thursday, August 6, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
New pension reform bill could reshape the debate over system overhaul

New pension reform bill could reshape the debate over system overhaul

Rep. Mike Tobash (R-Schuylkill) is resurrecting his hybrid pension reform plan that was discussed at length last session, but failed to gain enough support to bring the concept up for a vote on the House floor.

He’s hoping that with the governor’s veto of Senate Bill 1 and the vetting of a defined contribution pension reform plan that the time is ripe for this idea to clear the hurdles that were erected in front of his plan last session.

“After that bill in the last session had gone through the process of some agreed-to amendments, this is kind of the product that eventually came out of that effort,” Rep. Tobash told The PLS Reporter. “It’s the growing expectation of Pennsylvania citizens that we accomplish something in this regard.”

He said he hesitated to introduce the plan because multiple viable options would not be productive to the process.

“But with the veto of Senate Bill 1 and two bodies that have exhibited their ability to vote on meaningful pension reform, I think that alternative options at this point in time are helpful to the process,” he added. “It’s an important time to continue and further the conversation."

Thursday, August 6, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views

Liquor Control Board reports a 4.2 percent increase in sales

At a Wednesday informational meeting with the House Liquor Control Committee, Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Chairman Tim Holden told legislators that in a preliminary look at FY 2014-2015 sales numbers, the board increased sales 4.2 percent over the prior year.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
VIDEO: PLCB testifies before House committee on alcohol distribution in Pennsylvania

VIDEO: PLCB testifies before House committee on alcohol distribution in Pennsylvania

During a House Liquor Control Committee meeting on logistics and distribution of alcohol in Pennsylvania, PLCB Chairman Tim Holden gives his testimony. 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
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Progress continues to elude budget negotiators

Substantial progress toward an agreed-to budget continued to elude top budget negotiators after a 35 minute closed door meeting between Gov. Tom Wolf, House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny), and Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson) on Monday.

Tuesday marks the beginning of the fifth week of the Commonwealth’s ongoing budget stalemate.

Following Monday’s meeting, the Republican lawmakers said in order for real budget progress to take place, the governor needs to “roll up his sleeves” and negotiate with the full Republican leadership team.

“From a process perspective, Sen. Scarnati and myself made it clear to the governor that to be able to effectively negotiate he really needs to roll his sleeves up,” Rep. Turzai told a small group of reporters following the meeting.

“It cannot be staff level meetings, he has to roll his sleeves up, he has to have meetings with all Republican leaders at the table and be able to work diligently and you start it off with budgetary numbers.”

Monday, August 3, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
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