Category Archives: Issues

Wolf Vetoes Republicans’ End-Run Around DEP Drilling Regulations

Along with the Republican proposals for alcohol reform and pensions, Tom Wolf also vetoed the Republicans’ plan to use the Fiscal Code to carve conventional oil and gas drilling out of DEP’s ongoing Marcellus Shale rule-writing. If Republicans want different … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Energy, Environment, Issues

Why Can’t All Wawa’s Sell Beer?

One Wawa in Pennsylvania will soon sell beer, in Chadd’s Ford. Acme, Whole Foods and Wegmans already have approval to sell beer in the area. A decision is expected on July 21. Wawa doesn’t sell beer in Pennsylvania, but does … More after the jump

Posted in Economy, Issues

Republicans Not Backing Off on Undoing Environmental Policy Through the Fiscal Code

Despite Tom Wolf’s veto, House and Senate Republicans aren’t backing off trying to undo the Department of Environmental Protection’s drilling regulations by amending the fiscal code – an abuse of the process that requires no committee hearings or public outreach, unlike the … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Energy, Environment, Issues

Republicans Using Fiscal Code to Undermine DEP’s Authority to Regulate Oil and Gas Drilling

Late Sunday night, Republicans adopted an amendment to the Fiscal Code that would halt DEP’s process for regulating oil and gas. The amendment hadn’t been proposed or debated previously before randomly showing up on Sunday night, likely at the behest … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Energy, Environment, Issues

Why Don’t Pipeline Builders Have to Pay Property Taxes?

In New Jersey, pipeline builders have to pay property taxes to the towns they build in, but not in Pennsylvania: As Republican legislative leaders and the natural gas industry unite to beat back Gov. Tom Wolf’s severance tax proposal, here’s … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Energy, Environment, Issues

Why a Severance Tax on Natural Gas is Good for the Shale Industry

Chris Briem made a great point about this back in 2014, and I wanted to pull that out again because Mike Turzai is out there saying some pretty unbelievable stuff about the impact of a natural gas severance tax on … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Energy, Environment, Issues

Mark Squilla’s Unsatisfactory Answer to Why He Attended “White Women’s Lives Matter” Rally

(Councilman Squilla calming things down) The trouble with Philly Councilman Mark Squilla’s response to why he attended the racially-charged protest in Whitman (a neighborhood in South Philadelphia with a pretty recent history of racist reaction politics) is that when politicians go to rallies, … More after the jump

Posted in Civil Rights, Issues

Scott Wagner Doubles Down on Helicopter-Based School Auditing

In response to Wolf Press Secretary Jeff Sheridan’s suggestion that the Republican “get out of the helicopter and go visit a school,” Senator Scott Wagner is now doubling down on his claim that he can tell schools have enough state funding by looking … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Education, Issues

Elections Have Consequences: Environmental Secretaries Edition

With the confirmation of John Quigley as Tom Wolf’s Department of Environmental Protection Secretary this week, it’s an important time to pause and reflect on how drastically different of an approach Democratic and Republican administrations take to staffing this agency, … More after the jump

Posted in Environment, Issues

Tea Party Garbageman Can Tell Which Schools Are Well-Funded By Flying Over Them in a Helicopter

So, this is a thing that happened: “State Sen. Scott Wagner went for a helicopter ride last week. Sen. Wagner took WHTM’s Dennis Owens for a ride, figuratively. The senator flew over three central Pennsylvania schools hoping to illustrate that schools … More after the jump

Posted in Budget, Education, Elections, Issues, State Senate