The Associated Press

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Thursday struck down portions of a law that stripped some of the powers municipalities have to decide where the natural gas industry can operate — portions that the industry had sought from Gov. Tom Corbett and lawmakers.

The justices ruled the 2012 law unconstitutionally restricted the power of municipalities, although the 4-to-2 majority disagreed as to why it was unconstitutional.

Pennsylvania enacted its first new laws Wednesday in the Legislature's wide-ranging response to the Jerry Sandusky and Roman Catholic clergy child sexual abuse scandals, a step that expands the nearly 20-year-old playbook for how caseworkers and investigators can handle reports of child abuse.

Gov. Tom Corbett is supporting a measure to ban the discrimination of Pennsylvanians based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

The proposal would update the commonwealth’s anti-discrimination law to include what supporters call basic protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Pennsylvanians.

The governor insists he’s not changing his stance on the issue, claiming it’s the first time he’s had any kind of position.

Winter weather advisories and storm warnings have been posted for much of Pennsylvania as a storm bearing a wintry mix of precipitation rolls into the commonwealth.

The National Weather Service says snow, sleet and areas of freezing rain and ice are expected later Tuesday in areas from western to northeastern Pennsylvania.

After more than a year of discussion, the state has a transportation plan in place.

A $2.3 billion plan to fund roads, bridges, mass transit, airports, waterways, bike paths and more has passed the state House and heads to the governor’s desk.

Gov. Tom Corbett is hailing passage of new transportation bill, saying he perceived an urgent need to fix roads and bridges after he took office three years ago.

The Republican spoke Thursday shortly after legislative approval of a law to pump billions into transportation infrastructure and mass transit.

Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

The ACLU of Pennsylvania has filed a federal lawsuit against Pittsburgh police officer Jonathan Gromek, who last summer arrested a black teacher after a community meeting on police/community relations in Homewood.

All charges against Dennis Henderson were withdrawn by the district attorney, but Henderson said that the damage that was done can’t be undone.

Two state senators, one a Republican and the other a Democrat, are planning to introduce a bill to legalize a certain form of marijuana for medicinal use in Pennsylvania.

Sens. Daylin Leach and Mike Folmer said Monday their bill would help ensure Pennsylvanians can get medical benefits from cannabidiol, a compound found in marijuana that's credited with various medical applications without providing a high.

Lawyers for the federal government and two Pennsylvania Catholic dioceses say a central question in a lawsuit over Affordable Care Act mandates is how to define a "substantial burden" as it relates to religious beliefs.

The oral arguments took place Wednesday in Pittsburgh. The Pittsburgh and Erie dioceses object to the new federal health care law and are suing the federal government to seek an exemption.

Heather McClain / 90.5 WESA

Update: 7:39 a.m. Thursday

Pittsburgh police have charged a 16-year-old student with shooting three others outside a high school, allegedly in retaliation for a drug-related robbery inside the school last month.

None of the students wounded minutes after Brashear High School dismissed classes Wednesday has life-threatening injuries. Police say two were grazed by bullets, while one was shot in the arm and foot. Police say a fourth was targeted but not hurt.

The Justice Department says it has reached an agreement permitting the $11 billion merger of American Airlines and US Airways, creating the world's biggest airline.

In August, the federal government, along with Pennsylvania and five other states, sued to block the merger, claiming it would restrict competition and drive up prices for consumers on hundreds of routes around the country.

The airlines have said their deal would increase competition by creating another big competitor to United Airlines and Delta Air Lines, which grew through recent mergers.

Lawyer Vic Stabile has beaten Allegheny County judge Jack McVay Jr. to win a seat on the Pennsylvania Superior Court.

The battle for the mid-level appeals court was the only statewide race on Tuesday's ballot.

Stabile shook up the race last week by airing a TV ad criticizing McVay because his fiancee and sister-in-law are on the Allegheny County court payroll.

McVay called the ad unfair because he did nothing wrong, and a Pennsylvania Bar Association panel asked Stabile to take down the ad, but he has refused,

Pennsylvania voters have approved additional 10-year terms for four state appellate judges.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald Castille and Justice Max Baer and Superior Court judges Susan Gantman and Jack Panella faced up-or-down "retention" votes to decide if they should stay on the bench.

Judges are unopposed in retention elections.

Pennsylvania's polls are now closed and the ballot counting is under way.

Spot checks at polling places revealed a light turnout Tuesday in an election featuring only one statewide race. That was the Superior Court contest between Harrisburg lawyer Vic Stabile, a Republican, against Democrat Jack McVay Jr., an Allegheny County judge.

Other closely watched races included mayoral contests in Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, Scranton, Lancaster and State College, as well as numerous races for local offices, school boards and county judgeships.

Teresa Heinz Kerry says family members weren't fully aware of a controversial decision by the Heinz Endowments to partner with major energy companies on natural gas drilling standards, even though the organization approved two pilot grants for the project last year.

The Heinz Endowments, with assets of $1.4 billion, is the 49th largest foundation in the United States. Heinz Kerry is chair of the Endowments, and she told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that she was never involved with the Center for Sustainable Shale Development.

The city's two highest-ranking police officials appeared Wednesday to testify before a federal grand jury believed to be investigating the mayor's use of police-issued bodyguards and other matters.

Acting police Chief Regina McDonald and Deputy Chief Paul Donaldson entered the grand jury room at about 9 a.m. and left about two hours later, declining to offer specifics.

"Can't tell you anything," McDonald said as she left. "We're not permitted to talk."

"We were just here to assist them with the investigation," Donaldson said.

Former state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin is due in court to explain why she hasn't yet sent autographed pictures of herself in handcuffs apologizing to other state judges for her campaign corruption conviction earlier this year.

Melvin's attorneys say the apologies unfairly force Melvin to incriminate herself while she appeals her conviction. Last week, the state Superior Court agreed and ordered that part of Melvin's sentence be delayed.

But prosecutors say Melvin has already apologized in court, so mailing more apologies shouldn't violate her rights.

Pennsylvania's governor says he's sorry if anyone was offended when he compared gay marriage to the marriage of a brother and sister during a TV interview.

Republican Gov. Tom Corbett issued a statement Friday saying his "words were not intended to offend anyone" and apologizing if they did.

Corbett says his comment during the WHP-TV morning news interview was meant to provide an example of the categories of people who aren't legally entitled to obtain marriage licenses in Pennsylvania.

The National Labor Relations Board has filed another complaint against the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, claiming four workers have been fired for union activity.

UPMC spokeswoman Gloria Kreps says, "The NLRB has not determined that UPMC has violated any labor laws and any representation that a violation has been found is false." She says the hospital network, which dominates western Pennsylvania, is looking forward to presenting its side.

Southwest Airlines will be offering daily nonstop flights between Pittsburgh and Nashville.

The company says the first flight will depart Pittsburgh International Airport at 7:55 a.m. Tuesday.

The Allegheny County Airport Authority says officials in both cities will hold dedication ceremonies, with polka music in Nashville and country music in Pittsburgh.

Nashville will be Southwest's ninth destination from Pittsburgh.

Penn State officials say they are gratified by the NCAA's decision to gradually restore football scholarships taken from the school following the Jerry Sandusky child molestation scandal.

President Rodney Erickson called the news particularly welcome to student athletes who want to attend Penn State "and will now have the means to do so."

College sports' governing body said Tuesday that the school has made significant changes to its athletics programs and cited the recommendation of former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell, who's been serving as the programs' integrity monitor.

Pittsburgh police say they're reviewing the timecard records of an officer who formerly worked as a bodyguard for Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, and who testified against the mayor before a federal grand jury earlier this year.

At that time, the attorney for Fred Crawford said the investigation will eventually show that tax dollars were "wasted so the mayor could have a designated driver ... while he went out to bars."

That attorney, Robert Stewart, didn't return a call for comment Tuesday on the newest information about Crawford provided by acting Chief Regina McDonald.

The Pittsburgh Parking Authority is using automated mobile surveillance cameras to snap pictures of up to 200,000 license plates a month so it can find scofflaws who repeatedly flout parking laws.

Those cars can be "booted" — that is, fit with a metal locking device that attaches to a wheel that cannot be removed until overdue fines are paid.

Dozens of Transportation Security Administration workers at the Pittsburgh International Airport have been suspended or reprimanded after they were caught taking part in workplace sports gambling.

WPXI-TV reports that after a months-long investigation 47 workers were suspended and 10 letters of reprimand were sent out.

A suburban man who was shot and left paralyzed by one of three Pittsburgh police officers is suing claiming they used excessive force and had racially profiled him during the traffic stop in question.

Attorneys for the city and its police union are defending the officers who encountered 20-year-old Leon Ford in November.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court could be the next stop for a suburban Philadelphia county's battle to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Montgomery County said Tuesday that its solicitor, Ray McGarry, will appeal a state judge's order stopping a court clerk from issuing the licenses.

McGarry says he'll file the appeal in the next several days on behalf of Bruce Hanes, the register of wills.

Poverty in Pennsylvania has risen slightly, but remains below the national average.

The Census Bureau reported Tuesday that almost 1.8 million people in Pennsylvania, or 13.9 percent, were living in poverty during 2012. That's up slightly from 13.8 percent in 2011 and 13.4 percent in 2010. Pennsylvania's population is almost 12.8 million.

Nationally, the number of people living in poverty was 15 percent in 2012.

The Census Bureau's annual report offers a snapshot of the economic well-being of U.S. households for 2012.

A transgender man has filed a lawsuit against the University of Pittsburgh, claiming he was expelled and subject to FBI scrutiny because of a dispute over locker room use.

The lawsuit was filed Monday by 24-year-old Seamus Johnston, of Johnstown. He was born a woman but filed a name change with Pitt in 2011 and enrolled in a men's weightlifting class. Officials told Johnston not to use the men's locker room, and later banned him from the school, according to the lawsuit.

The Pittsburgh Steelers and the taxpayer-funded city-county Sports and Exhibition Authority say they're going to try to settle a dispute over who must pay most of the estimated $30 million cost to add 3,000 seats to Heinz Field.

An Allegheny County judge in June rejected the teams' claim that the authority must pay most of the money, but agreed to hold a trial on the matter Dec. 4.

But now, both sides say they'll try to work out a deal before then after both sides met with the judge Thursday.

A Pennsylvania judge on Thursday ordered a suburban Philadelphia clerk to stop issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini said Montgomery County Register of Wills D. Bruce Hanes did not have the power to decide on his own whether Pennsylvania's same-sex marriage ban violates the state constitution.

The Shaler Area School District has reached a tentative agreement with its striking teachers.

According to the district's web site, the teachers' union ratified the deal Wednesday morning and the school board was expected to approve it at a meeting that night.

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