As revenue talks drag on, fight over natural gas severance tax heats up

As revenue talks drag on, fight over natural gas severance tax heats up

With budget-related revenue negotiations likely to drag into the third week of their current standoff, the fight over whether a natural gas severance tax should be part of those discussions has continued to heat up.

 

While Republican leaders have been more than recalcitrant in their stance toward bringing up any one of the numerous proposals introduced in either the House or Senate, one can hardly speak to a Democrat or moderate Republican in the Capitol without hearing from one of them about how such a tax—in exchange with the natural gas industry for some regulatory relief—could be a primary solution to end the Commonwealth’s revenue woes.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
PA Senate leaves town as leaders mull House GOP revenue counterproposal

PA Senate leaves town as leaders mull House GOP revenue counterproposal

The Pennsylvania Senate left Harrisburg Tuesday afternoon after a consensus failed to emerge on a plan to plug a $2.2 billion revenue hole that will close out the recently concluded fiscal year and balance the current fiscal year’s spending plan.

 

At this point, the Senate hopes to return to Harrisburg no later than Monday, though whether they could return sooner remained up in the air as discussions on reaching a revenue compromise continue.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Lead levels in Pittsburgh's drinking water starting to improve

Lead levels in Pittsburgh's drinking water starting to improve

The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority announced Tuesday that it is now in compliance with Environmental Protection Agency's standards for lead levels in drinking water according to its most recent compliance testing.
128 residential samples were collected through June 2017 and the 90th percentile value was calculated at 15 parts per billion (ppb), the EPA action level. Less than 10 percent of homes were above 15 ppb.
Tuesday, July 18, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Pittsburgh
Senate hopes to catalyze revenue agreement with return to Harrisburg

Senate hopes to catalyze revenue agreement with return to Harrisburg

The Pennsylvania Senate returned to voting session Monday as the Commonwealth’s FY 2017-2018 unbalanced spending plan has been in law for a week.

 

While the Senate did very little actual voting, a lot of the work on Monday was behind the scenes with leaders and staff working across chambers to try and reach agreement on a $2.2 billion revenue package to close out the previous fiscal year and balance the current year’s budget.

Monday, July 17, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Legislation to move PWSA under authority of PUC clears Senate Appropriations Committee

Legislation to move PWSA under authority of PUC clears Senate Appropriations Committee

The Senate Appropriations Committee voted Friday to move out a proposal by House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-McCandless) and Rep. Harry Readshaw (D-West Mifflin) to place the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) under the control of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC).

House Bill 1490 is only one of the proposal’s currently being considered in Harrisburg to help elevate the crumbling water and sewer infrastructure that is crippling some Pittsburgh residents with a lead water issue.

The other two measures, Senate Bills 656 and 649, sponsored by Sen. Wayne Fontana (D-Brookline) would allow local governments to tap government funding sources to help citizens fund sewer and water line repairs- especially when public health or safety are at risk. 

Friday, June 30, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Pittsburgh
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