Google protest in Pittsburgh postponed, state officials react to Charlottesville events

As the events that rocked Charlottesville, Virginia this past weekend still reverberate around cities and towns across the country and state, organizers of a protest against Google in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty neighborhood scheduled for this Saturday have postponed the event.

Organizers for the March on Google said in a blog post earlier this week that there were “credible Alt-Left terrorist threats for the safety of our citizen participants” that led to the cancellation.
Thursday, August 17, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Taxpayer Caucus hears opposition to Senate-passed revenue plan

Taxpayer Caucus hears opposition to Senate-passed revenue plan

The legislative taxpayer caucus, met in Allegheny County at a hearing hosted by caucus member Rep. Jason Ortitay (R-Washington) this week to discuss the state Senate’s most recent budget revenue proposal to balance Pennsylvania’s $31.99 billion budget for the FY 2017-18.  


The caucus heard from a panel of utility officials, natural gas industry suppliers and workers, as wells as taxpayers who were mostly critical of the plan that would place an extraction tax on Marcellus Shale drillers and a gross receipts tax on natural gas customers, as well as a tax hike on electricity and phone bills.  

Wednesday, August 16, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
PWSA board considers assistance program, moratorium on service shutoffs

PWSA board considers assistance program, moratorium on service shutoffs

The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority board is poised to begin a customer assistance program, along with a suggested moratorium on water service shutoffs for customers.

PWSA board Chairwoman Debbie Lestitian moved Thursday to create a subcommittee within the board to consider the approach, asking Councilwoman Deb Gross (District 7) and Vice Chairperson Margaret Lanier to take the lead.

“An important part of working on a public authority is listening to the public," said Lestitian. “I’ve had several meetings with a lot of the community groups, they’ve all expressed the same concerns. With three new board members now, it’s a responsible time to explore customer assistance programs and their requests for a potential shut off moratorium.” 

Friday, August 11, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Pittsburgh
Business association leaders say revenue package will hurt state's competitiveness, increase operating costs

Business association leaders say revenue package will hurt state's competitiveness, increase operating costs

A coalition of Pennsylvania business and economic leaders came together Tuesday to discuss what they believe to be the negative impacts of the Senate-passed revenue package to fund the 2017-2018 state budget 


Much of the conversation focused on the new taxes and higher tax rates proposed for natural gas drillers and consumers in $2 billion revenue package passed by the body in late July.  


The proposal calls for a five percent tax on the gross transaction amount of electric grid virtual financial transactions and a 5.7 percent gross receipts tax to natural gas consumption, provisions that many within the “Anti-Energy Tax Coalition” say will quash any competitive advantage Pennsylvania may have in the energy industry. 

Tuesday, August 8, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: News and Views
Gov. Wolf, Sen. Costa give budget update

Gov. Wolf, Sen. Costa give budget update

Gov. Tom Wolf was in Pittsburgh Monday on a “Jobs That Pay” event where, after touring an area business, he provided his thoughts on the ongoing state budget process.

With a plan to fund the 2017-18 state budget halfway to implementation after the Senate passed a $2 billion revenue package late last month, Gov. Wolf said he is hopeful this year’s budget standoff will be over soon.

Monday, August 7, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
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