Government & Politics

Government & Politics
8:09 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Mayoral Field Could Get Crowded Quickly

With a focus on transforming the city of Pittsburgh, City Councilman Bill Peduto officially launched his campaign for mayor last night. 

“The transformation has to be something where city government reflects all the other things that are changing, all the positive things that are happening,” said Peduto.  “It needs somebody who not only can respect and understand the past that has more than just a vision of the future but an understanding of how it can happen.”

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Government & Politics
8:09 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Mayoral Field Could Get Crowded Quickly

With a focus on transforming the city of Pittsburgh, City Councilman Bill Peduto officially launched his campaign for mayor last night. 

“The transformation has to be something where city government reflects all the other things that are changing, all the positive things that are happening,” said Peduto.  “It needs somebody who not only can respect and understand the past that has more than just a vision of the future but an understanding of how it can happen.”

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Government & Politics
7:59 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Congressman Urges Pentagon To Use American Made Steel for Navy

http://2cccd5dfe1965e26adf6-26c50ce30a6867b5a67335a93e186605.r53.cf1.rackcdn.com/Murphy Wrap_Emily Farah_SOC.mp3

The Department of Defense is getting some firm-handed advice from two U.S. Congressmen to use domestically made steel for the Navy’s long-term shipbuilding strategy.

Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA-18) and Peter Visclosky (D-IN-01) , Chairman and Vice Chairman, respectively, of the Congressional Steel Caucus wrote a letter to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta stressing the importance of using American-made metals throughout the supply-chain for naval ships.

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Government & Politics
7:59 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Congressman Urges Pentagon To Use American Made Steel for Navy

http://2cccd5dfe1965e26adf6-26c50ce30a6867b5a67335a93e186605.r53.cf1.rackcdn.com/Murphy Wrap_Emily Farah_SOC.mp3

The Department of Defense is getting some firm-handed advice from two U.S. Congressmen to use domestically made steel for the Navy’s long-term shipbuilding strategy.

Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA-18) and Peter Visclosky (D-IN-01) , Chairman and Vice Chairman, respectively, of the Congressional Steel Caucus wrote a letter to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta stressing the importance of using American-made metals throughout the supply-chain for naval ships.

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Government & Politics
5:14 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Dan Rooney Steps down as Ambassador, Returns Home

Pittsburgh Steelers chairman and co-owner Dan Rooney has stepped down as the U.S. ambassador to Ireland. The embassy in Dublin said the 80-year-old Rooney resigned Friday and returned to the United States. Press officer John Murphy said Rooney met with Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny and President Michael Higgins during a final round of engagements this week.

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Government & Politics
4:54 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Fewer Foster Kids in PA, but What About Abuse Cases?

http://2cccd5dfe1965e26adf6-26c50ce30a6867b5a67335a93e186605.r53.cf1.rackcdn.com/Children Wrap_Mary Wilson_SOC.mp3

A new report shows fewer children in Pennsylvania are in foster care but the state should not expect the trend to continue.

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Government & Politics
8:30 am
Fri December 14, 2012

BoomTown: How Drilling Has Changed Towanda

What does a drilling boom look like?

In Towanda, Bradford County, it looks like trucks rumbling across Veterans Memorial Bridge and down Main Street. The vehicles,  hauling water, chemicals, equipment, sand and dirt more to and from natural gas drilling sites, have been a steady presence since 2008, when hydraulic fracturing began in surrounding Bradford County.

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Government & Politics
7:32 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Summer Trial Likely on Voter ID Law

The case over the state’s voter ID law is likely to land back in Commonwealth Court for a full trial next summer.  That would give the state Supreme Court enough time before November’s general election to hear an appeal. 

Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson discussed scheduling issues with lawyers at an hour-long meeting Thursday and said he would issue an order within two weeks.

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Government & Politics
12:23 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Treasurer Questions Legality of Lottery Bid

The latest Democrat to voice concerns about the potential privatization of the Pennsylvania Lottery is the one guy who could keep the money from flowing.

State Treasurer Rob McCord said today that he may not play along with any contract that hands over the operation of the Lottery to a company that promises to expand gambling. He included his concerns in a letter to the secretary of the state Department of Revenue, which oversees the Lottery.

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Government & Politics
9:24 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Intense Debate On Longer Parking Meter Enforcement Hours

Pittsburgh City Council has until January 1 to decide whether to continue the practice of ending parking meter enforcement at 6 p.m., or let the enforcement time automatically extend until 10 p.m. on weekdays and Saturdays. At Wednesday's Council meeting, strong words and hot tempers proved the debate is far from over.

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Government & Politics
8:15 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Senators Turn Up Heat on President Over LIHEAP

In the midst of issues surrounding the fiscal cliff, Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) has joined a bipartisan effort urging President Obama to keep funding for heating assistance for the poor a top priority when considering budget cuts.   40 senators have submitted a letter to the administration requesting Mr. Obama include $4.7 billion in the 2014 fiscal year budget.

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Government & Politics
7:59 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Pennsylvania Will Not Pursue State-Based Health Exchange

Governor Tom Corbett announced on Wednesday that Pennsylvania will not be pursuing a state-based health exchange. The announcement came just days before the federally-set deadline for states to make a decision.

The health exchange, a critical component of The Affordable Care Act, is a type of online government-regulated marketplace where citizens can shop for insurance plans and compare costs and benefits.

States have the choice of operating their own exchanges, operating one with the federal government or allowing the federal government to run their state’s exchange.

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Government & Politics
5:44 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Class Action Filed Against Ellwood City for Flooding

A class action lawsuit filed Tuesday against the Ellwood City Borough is being positioned as an outcry from residents for a permanent fix to a storm water and sanitary water drainage problem.

Joe Bellissimo, an attorney with Bellissimo & Pierce, is one of the lawyers representing the community members.  He said the residents have been complaining of flooding after heavy rains for years through phone calls and newspaper articles.

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Government
5:17 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

PA Republicans View of Fiscal Cliff Differs from Democrats

Earlier this week several Democratic lawmakers from across the state called for a fiscal cliff deal that increases revenue to cities, but G-O-P county commissioners aren’t singing the same tune.

Lancaster County Commissioner Scott Martin said of more concern for him is that a fiscal cliff deal won’t cut spending enough.

“We have the ability locally to provide services and tax for those services,” he said. “If we can’t afford it, maybe we shouldn’t be doing it.”

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Government
9:06 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Senate Democrats Push for Transportation Funding

Pennsylvania cannot afford to keep waiting for a solution to the state’s transportation funding problems, say two Senate Democrats.

State Senators John Wozniak (D-Cambria County) and Tim Solobay (D-Washington County) are asking Governor Tom Corbett and the legislature to focus on finding more revenue to support the state’s infrastructure problems when they return to Harrisburg for a new session in January.

Senator Tim Solobay said fixing transportation infrastructure is a matter of safety.

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Government
8:35 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Makes Changes in Juvenile Justice System

New changes made by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court aim to speed the appellate review of cases where juvenile offenders are placed outside their homes in court delinquency matters. These are the types of cases in which juveniles are usually sent to a detention center of a residential facility.

The changes mark a difference in the length of time out-of-placement cases are reviewed.

Court officials say this should help appellate courts identify instances of sentencing abuse, as was the case in Luzerne County. 

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Government
7:31 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Pittsburgh Landlord Shame Law Passed

A bill that would use shame to try to get Pittsburgh landlords to clean up their properties is on its way to the mayor’s desk.  The final vote Tuesday came after the measure was amended twice--once to soften the legislation and once to make it a bit stronger. 

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Government
2:38 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Turnpike Blasted for Freebies

The Pennsylvania Turnpike could be paying a high price for a policy to allow free travel for employees, contractors, and state officials.

According to numbers from the Turnpike requested by the Auditor General’s office, the toll road lost $7.7 million dollars in toll revenue between 2007 and 2011 due to free passes it offers to employees and others for work and personal travel. The figure also includes toll fare never collected from consultants, contractors, State Police, PennDOT officials, and people from the governor and lieutenant governor’s offices.

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Government
9:21 am
Tue December 11, 2012

Businesses Learn About Disaster Preparedness, How They Can Help

A Corbett administration representative will brief the region's business leaders on the state's response to Hurricane Sandy as part of a Tuesday meet-and-greet between public emergency response officials and private sector leaders.

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Government
8:20 am
Tue December 11, 2012

Local Hospitals Will Lose Federal Subsidies

Hospitals provide care to patients regardless of their ability to pay. That care comes at a high cost. For years, the federal government has helped offset that cost. Now, with the Affordable Care Act, those payments will be reduced. 

More than 70,000 people a year pass through the Emergency Room doors of UPMC Mercy in Uptown. They come via helicopter or ambulance. They drive themselves or are driven by others. And Will Cook, the president of UPMC Mercy, says many just walk in.

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Government
11:19 pm
Mon December 10, 2012

PA Mayors Urge Congress Not to Cut Funding For Cities

As President Barack Obama and House and Senate leaders try to reach an agreement on revenues and spending cuts to avoid going over the "fiscal cliff," mayors across Pennsylvania are urging Congress to avoid large funding cuts for cities in the commonwealth.

“If the federal deficit reduction plan does not include significant new revenues, cities, and counties, and school districts all across Pennsylvania and across the country unfortunately will bear the significant burden of those reductions,” said Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.

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Government
11:15 pm
Mon December 10, 2012

Pittsburghers Call on Casey to Stand with Middle Class – Raise Taxes for Wealthy

As talk of avoiding the fiscal cliff continues in Washington, a group of local labor leaders and community activists took to the streets of Pittsburgh to call on Senator Bob Casey to make good on his promise to “stand with the middle class.” Members of advocacy group One Pittsburgh spoke with Casey shortly after his re-election and said they were told he would.

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Government
5:48 pm
Mon December 10, 2012

Parking Meter Enforcement: 6 PM or 10 PM?

Nearing the end of the year...facing a deadline over parking in the city of Pittsburgh.....sound familiar?  

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Government
5:35 pm
Mon December 10, 2012

Corbett Not Pushing For Right-to-Work

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett says he doesn't see a strong will to make Pennsylvania a "right-to-work" state, a key issue for conservatives as fellow industrial state Michigan is poised to become the 24th state to pass such a law.

The Republican governor told a radio interviewer Monday the lack of momentum has to do with local and state politics, but he didn't elaborate or say whether he'd support such legislation.

Right-to-work bills prohibit requirements that employees join a union or pay union dues as a condition of employment.

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Government
9:03 am
Mon December 10, 2012

Free Clinic Busy; Expects to Stay Busy Even With Affordable Care Act

As Annette Fetchko walks the corridors of Catholic Charities’ health clinic in downtown Pittsburgh the head administrator greets everyone she sees. There are doctors, nurses, pharmacists - and there are patients – all hues, shapes and sizes and from all over southwestern Pennsylvania. They’re here for medical care.

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