Senate panel takes on limiting property tax increases and so-called “ghost teachers”

Senate panel takes on limiting property tax increases and so-called “ghost teachers”

The Senate Education Committee Wednesday reported out a number of bills, including one bill that would place additional restrictions on the ability of school boards to approve property tax increases and another bill that would limit the ability of public school employees to accrue benefits while on full-time union leave.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Senate begins reboot process for municipal gun ordinance preemption bill

Senate begins reboot process for municipal gun ordinance preemption bill

The Senate Local Government Committee Tuesday morning began the reboot of a proposal that would ensure state gun laws preempt municipal gun ordinances by granting membership organizations standing to bring suit on behalf of an aggrieved member.

 

The bill—Senate Bill 5 introduced by freshman Sen. Wayne Langerholc (R-Cambria)—is the latest iteration of legislation that was actually enacted under the Gov. Tom Corbett administration, but later struck down by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on an issue unrelated to the underlying proposal.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Allegheny County Delegation votes for the week of February 6

Allegheny County Delegation votes for the week of February 6

The Pennsylvania Senate passed a number of controversial legislation this week, including measures punishing so-called “sanctuary cities,” prohibiting the deduction of union dues to be used for political purposes, and restricting abortions.

The Allegheny County state legislative delegation voting largely along party lines when the bills were considered on the Floor.
Thursday, February 9, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Pittsburgh

Senate Democratic Policy Committee tackles role of charter schools in public education

The Senate Democratic Policy Committee held a hearing in Pittsburgh Thursday to discuss the role of charter schools in public education across the state. 

“I hope today’s hearing gives us a better sense of how the charter school system works; how it compliments, or detracts from traditional pubic schools; and ways we can make these schools more efficient, transparent and accountable,” said Sen. Lisa Boscola (D-Lehigh), chairman of the committee. 

Calling Pennsylvania’s charter school law the “worst in the nation,” Auditor General Eugene DePasquale issued a 95-page audit last month that revealed numerous examples of financial mismanagement, conflicts of interest and poor oversight.

Thursday, October 13, 2016/Author: Alanna Koll

As liquor bill moves forward, debate continues over value of privatization vs. modernization

As House Bill 466 continues to work its way through the Senate on its way to final passage and eventually Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk by end of legislative business Tuesday, debate in the Senate Appropriations Committee moved somewhat away from the cause of displaced workers and centered around whether Pennsylvania is undervaluing the current system by selling the asset without first working toward modernization.

Sen. Jim Brewster (D-Allegheny) said now is not the time to sell off the state-owned system.

“We do not have to sell off this asset,” he said. “It’s one of the few we have left.”

He said while changes to the system have to be made to increase profitability, it’s not the time to “throw the baby out with the bathwater.”

Monday, June 29, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
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