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 Brown has withdrawn his name from further consideration for the position.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
Capitol Quick Hits for 6.15.15

Capitol Quick Hits for 6.15.15

Here are the highlights from news conferences, rallies, and advocacy days held in the Capitol today: 

  • A diverse group of organizations comprising the Disability Budget Coalition held a rally in the Main Capitol this morning to tell their individual stories about how home and community based services have helped them while saving the Commonwealth money. Disability advocate Linda Anthony explained more than eighty organizations have joined forces to champion the fact that community support for the disabled saves money and makes sense.
  • Members of the Government Reform Caucus joined together in the Media Center today to call for enactment of a gift ban and to discuss the caucus’s legislative endorsement process. Rep. George Dunbar (R-Westmoreland), co-chair of the Government Reform Caucus pointed out that last year the caucus was pushing gift ban legislation, and with the governor’s enactment of a ban, remains hopeful to get it done this year.
  • Secretary of Aging Teresa Osborne and Secretary of Banking and Securities Robin Wiessmann today urged Pennsylvanians to be aware of the signs and symptoms of elder abuse and reminded them of the opportunity to confidentially report any suspicions of elder abuse using a statewide hotline. 

Monday, June 15, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Event Central
Tags:
PlanCON reform urged by public school officials

PlanCON reform urged by public school officials

Groups and officials representing Pennsylvania public school interests called on lawmakers and the governor to support legislation that would significantly reform PlanCON, the process by which school districts are reimbursed for construction projects.

“[PlanCON] consists of eleven laborious, paperwork intensive, bureaucratic, archaic, and out-of-date paperwork submissions,” said Jay Himes of the Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials. “Taken altogether, it is simply a train wreck when it comes to the state budget and its ability to fund the commitment the Commonwealth should have made for schools to get reimbursed.”

He said the current PlanCON process and the lack of funding resulting in less-than-expected reimbursements for construction projects has led to cuts in programs and personnel as well as increases to property taxes.

Speakers noted many of PlanCON’s provisions—which have their origin in the 1970s—still remain in effect today.

Monday, June 15, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
RSS
First520521522523524525526527528529Last