Pennsylvania Perspective for Thursday, June 30, 2022

June 30, 2022


Negotiations Continue as State Lawmakers Work to Meet Budget Deadline

Though the deadline is midnight tonight, it remains unclear what exactly the 2022-23 budget will look like, as Democratic Governor Tom Wolf and the Republican majorities in the state House and Senate continue to hammer out the finer details. PennLive has more.

Pennsylvania Joins EMS Compact

Pennsylvania is poised to become the 22nd state to join an EMS compact, making it easier for emergency workers to practice across state lines, and hopefully attract more candidates to EMS jobs. Senate Bill 681, which has already been signed by both chambers of the General Assembly, was presented to Governor Wolf yesterday. The Center Square has more.

Bill Banning Trans Student Athletes from Competition Approved by State Legislators; Governor Wolf to Veto

House Bill 972, which would ban transgender athletes from competition on teams that align with their gender identity at the scholastic and collegiate level, was approved by both chambers of the General Assembly yesterday. Governor Wolf has already stated that he will veto the bill. City & State Pennsylvania has more.

Lawmakers Disagree on Potential Legislative Rule Changes

Despite general consensus among Democrats and Republicans that changes are sorely needed to the lawmaking process at the state level, there is little, if any, agreement on how to make them. City & State Pennsylvania has more.

Bill Proposing Expansion of Poll-Watcher Rights Approved by State Legislators

State legislators have approved a bill that, if signed by Governor Wolf, would expand the rights of poll observers. The bill was crafted in response to unsubstantiated claims about rampant election fraud in 2020, and would increase the number of observers that each candidate would be able to appoint from two to three as well as decrease the distance observers must keep from election workers and voters. WITF has more.



Community College of Philadelphia Forgives Unpaid Student Balances

The Community College of Philadelphia is using federal relief funds to pay the remaining balances of 1,900 of its students for the second consecutive year. The intent is to ameliorate financial hardships experienced by many of the college’s students, thus making it easier for them to complete their degrees and certificate programs. The Philadelphia Tribune has more.

State Panel to Investigate Philadelphia Gun Violence; May Recommend Impeachment of Philadelphia DA

Yesterday, Pennsylvania lawmakers began a process that will establish a panel to investigate Philadelphia’s recent epidemic of gun violence. This has the potential to result in a recommendation of impeachment for the City’s District Attorney Larry Krasner, who was reelected to the position in 2021. The AP has more.

Pennsylvania OCA to Investigate Sky-High Heating Bills

The Pennsylvania Office of Consumer Advocate will be investigating the higher than normal gas bills that many Philadelphia Gas Works customers received for the month of May. PGW’s weather normalization adjustment tool — which allows the company to increase or decrease costs to account for changes in gas usage due to abnormal temperatures — is behind the drastic surge. WHYY has more.



Councilman O’Connor Poised to Assume Allegheny County Controller Position

Pittsburgh City Councilman Corey O’Connor was nominated by a Pennsylvania Senate committee yesterday to fill the Allegheny County controller position, which became vacant when former controller Chelsa Wagner was elected to the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has more.

Pittsburgh Revenues Bouncing Back From Pandemic Slump

Pittsburgh City Controller Michael Lamb stated yesterday that the city’s revenues are beginning to trend toward normal, citing the significant improvements from this time last year. The Tribune-Review has more.

Energy Secretary Granholm Visits Pittsburgh, Talks Climate Change

U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm visited Pittsburgh’s BCI Steel’s factory on Tuesday, where she highlighted the importance of investing in low-carbon energy in order to combat climate change. Formerly a Bethlehem Steel plant, the factory now manufactures parts for solar panel installations. WESA has more.



Oz’s Image Suffers in Early Days of Senate Campaign 

At least two recent polls have shown Republican Senate candidate Mehmet Oz trailing his Democratic opponent, Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman. The unfavorable impression that many Pennsylvanians have of “Dr. Oz” (as the candidate is commonly known) may be one of his greatest challenges heading into the highly anticipated midterm elections. The Philadelphia Inquirer has more.

January’s Deadly Philadelphia Fire Prompts Congressional Action

Pennsylvania members of Congress are looking to propose smoke alarm regulations for public housing. This comes after a house fire claimed the lives of 12 people in Philadelphia earlier this year. While six of the home’s smoke detectors were found to be inoperable the morning of the fire, it is unclear whether lives would have been saved had they been functioning properly. The Philadelphia Inquirer has more.

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