Monthly Archives: February 2013

As state faces real problems, GOP focuses on rigging future elections

GUEST COLUMN: By state Representatives Frank Dermody and Mike Hanna Here we go again. Just as we begin deliberations on some of Pennsylvania’s most pressing issues, Republican leaders in the General Assembly have chosen to place their political party above … More after the jump

Posted in Elections, National Politics Tagged ,

Scott Kraus Shows Washington State Alcohol Reform Was Very Successful

Contrary to the headline of Scott Kraus’ piece on alcohol reform in Washington, it sounds to me like it’s been hugely successful at creating precisely the kind of retail alcohol economy I would like to see in Pennsylvania. Big chains … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

The Ultimate #AVI Tax Relief Plan: 77% of Philly Residential Properties Would Save Under Land Value Tax

As Zach Stalberg notes, Philly City Council seems totally erratic these days, lurching from one idea to the next in search of a tax relief plan for AVI: “If that [hodgepodge of proposals] feels like panic, I think it’s because … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

The Asshole Factor: The 5 PA Republicans Who Voted Against the Violence Against Women Act

These five gentleman don’t believe in protections for LGBT folks, undocumented immigrants or Native American women. Their top priority was protecting white guys who rape Native American women from getting prosecuted by tribal courts: Tim Murphy Tom Marino Joe Pitts Keith … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

#AVI Homestead Exemptions Falling Short of Target

One big problem with the homestead exemption approach to tax relief is that people have to apply to get it. A successful program needs to get people the money automatically. The Nutter administration’s estimate that 96% of eligible property owners get the homestead exemption looks … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

Why We Still Need the Voting Rights Act

Personally I’d like to see “preclearance” by DOJ apply to voting changes in all states, but Seth Masket points to why we especially still need it in the South. This is from 2008:

Posted in Miscellany

Holy Crap: Ravenstahl Thinking About Dropping Out of #PGHMayor Race?

Unconfirmed! But WXPI is teasing this so obviously we had to put it up on the blog. Huge news for Bill Peduto if true: Target 11 has confirmed through sources that Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl is questioning running for re-election. … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

How the New SEPTA Smart Card Could Save People From the Predatory Check Cashing Industry

Duncan Black makes an exciting catch in the Governing article on SEPTA: Deon said the new brand-name smart card will be a godsend to SEPTA’s riders, including those who don’t use banks. “Why should they pay $900 a year in … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

Bernanke: Sequester Cuts Will Lower GDP, Make Deficit Reduction Harder

Ben Bernanke: The CBO estimates that deficit-reduction policies in current law will slow the pace of real GDP growth by about 1-1/2 percentage points this year, relative to what it would have been otherwise. A significant portion of this effect … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany

The Insanity of Blaming the City of Harrisburg For Its Fiscal Woes

Excellent point from Patrick Kennedy. Harrisburg needs a Dauphin County-sized tax base: Harrisburg is a city of 50,000 people. It’s also a state seat. Its boundaries are very small and its major industry is tax exempt. Most of the people … More after the jump

Posted in Miscellany