live the wage food

Politicians can’t make it on minimum wage, but we did

By  |  July 31, 2014  |  No Comments

In an effort to gain sympathy for raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, numerous politicians accepted a challenge to “Live the Wage.” They were going to live for a week on $77 because that’s all that the challenge sponsors say a full-time worker earning minimum wage makes, To no one’s surprise, they couldn’t do it.

ON IMMIGRATION: Gov. Terry McAuliffe answered an immigration on WTOP's "Ask the Governor" on Wednesday. (Photo by WTOP/Sarah Beth Hensley)

Undocumented minors housed in VA, McAuliffe says ‘we don’t have an issue in Virginia’

Virginia  |  4:00 am

In perhaps the most he’s spoken publicly on the immigration crisis, Gov. Terry McAuliffe said it’s the feds’ problem, not Virginia’s, and that undocumented children are only being housed at one location in the commonwealth — even though news outlets have confirmed more.

Gruber: The Obamacare expert now says he was mistaken in 2012 presentation.

Does Gruber selection inspire confidence in VT’s costly single-payer consultants?

Vermont  |  4:00 am

As controversy swirls around Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber’s selection as Vermont’s single-payer guru, Vermonters might wonder if money given to such consultants is well spent.

BIRTHDAY BOY: Milton Friedman was one of the most famous advocates for the power and merits of the free market.

Happy birthday to that great defender of capitalism, Milton Friedman

National  |  4:00 am

Milton Friedman was one of the most famous advocates for the power and merits of the free market.

New Mexico children will get a say in ranking their school's performance.

Some anti-bullying policies disrespect free speech

National  |  4:00 am

What happens when anti-bullying measures leave students feeling bullied?

PENSION PENNIES: Pennsylvania's two pension funds have a combined unfunded liability of more than $47 billion.  That's expected to grow to as much as $65 billion within a few years.

State budget review points out pension problem

Iowa  |  4:00 am

As the final review of the new budget points out, the state’s retirement plans are underfunded. That’s doubling the cost of the plans for taxpayers,.

haynes2

Shockingly expensive school electrician indicted for fraud

Texas  |  4:00 am

Calvin Walker, the Beaumont electrician who kept on getting work with a school district long after he admitted submitting fake six-figure invoices, finally went to jail the week, although it was just a few hours before he posted bail.

'RETIREMENT PART:'

Uncle Sam bankrolled a third of Kansas spending in 2013

Kansas  |  July 30, 2014

On the home front, Kansas’ elected officials talk a big game about self-reliance and prudent fiscal governance, but last year more than a third of all dollars doled out by the Sunflower State came direct from the woefully-indebted federal government.

Should Kansas put its money where its mouth is and lessen its leaning on Uncle Sam’s wallet? State Rep. Gene Suellentrop, R-Wichita, says yes – to a point, at least.

WelcometoHawaii

Feds fly immigrant minors to Hawaii on taxpayer dime

National  |  4:00 am

Although 2,500 miles from the continental United States, Hawaii has joined the list of states temporarily housing unaccompanied minors from Central America who have illegally crossed into America through the Southwest border.

Who’s paying the freight? You, the taxpayer.

JUST SAY NO: State Rep. Stephen Bloom says residents should be more aware of PLCB advertising, like this infamous piece from 2011.

Lawmaker wants more transparency in PA liquor advertising

Pennsylvania  |  July 30, 2014

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board has that third word in its name for a reason — the agency was put in place after Prohibition to give the state a firm hand on where and when Pennsylvanians get their booze.

BURNING QUESTIONS: Several Kansas city managers say a pending IRS decision wouldn't derail volunteer fire departments, but could cause problems with rural response agreements.

Florida ag commissioner fuming over EPA firefighter equipment grab

Florida  |  July 30, 2014

Adam Putnam is red hot over the Obama administration’s environmental priorities.

As Florida’s commissioner of agriculture, Putnam oversees the state’s forest service and 1 million acres of land. Fighting forest fires is one of its key responsibilities.

SPECIAL REPORT

VIDEOS

PLAIN ENGLISH: While Gov. Sam Brownback has been characterized as uncaring in his opposition to Obamacare, the governor says it's a simple matter of fiscal prudence for those who realize the federal government doesn't always keep its promises.

Video: Brownback states plainly why Medicaid expansion hurts Kansas

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Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has been on the business end of numerous barbs and critiques for taking a stand against Obamacare and Medicaid expansion in the Sunflower State.

Those with unwavering faith in the federal government have characterized the conservative governor as an uncaring obstructionist for his opposition, but in an exclusive interview with the Daily Signal, Brownback laid out the argument against Obamacare in his own words.

little free library

Leawood throws the book at Little Free Library

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The city of Leawood is using the full power of the law to protect property values from the threat of, uh, free cabinet-sized libraries.

A municipal statute designed to ban all detached structures is being levied against Leawood residents Brian and Sarah Collins after their 9-year-old son, Spencer, worked with his dad and grandpa to build the Little Free Library as a Mother’s Day gift.

WATCHBLOG

 |  Virginia

By Kenric Ward | Watchdog.org Virginia Bureau
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – State Delegate Barbara Comstock is inflating her energy record to pump up her congressional bid.
The McLean Republican’s congressional campaign webpage declares that she “authored Virginia’s law to allow for offshore exploration of energy.”
In fact, Comstock’s “major legislation” did no such thing. Her 2010 bill, HB 900, [...]

Comstock goes overboard with offshore energy claim

 |  Texas

While taxpayers were picking up the tab for intensive, outpatient care for mentally ill patients, those patients were playing games and watching movies.

Medicare fraud: $97 million for mentally ill patients to watch movies, play games

By Josh Peterson | Watchdog.org
State public utilities regulators are calling for an easy way for consumers to compare complaints against the nation’s phone companies.
Currently, consumers can file complaints about their telecommunications service with the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Trade Commission, but those complaints aren’t publicly available in an online format for consumers.
On Wednesday, Chris [...]

Regulators push for public database of complaints against phone companies

 |  Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has saved almost $2 billion staving off welfare fraud, waste and abuse under Gov. Tom Corbett, said Beverly Mackereth, the secretary of the state’s Department of Public Welfare.

DPW chief: PA saves billions fighting welfare fraud

 |  Montana

By Dustin Hurst | Watchdog.org
For some, ignorance is bliss, but for Democrat Jon Tester, it’s an important campaign tactic.
Sure, the second-term senator from Montana isn’t up for re-election until 2018, but that won’t stop him from using disingenuous attacks on the wealthy to scare his constituents into sending him campaign cash.
“Today, it looks like the billionaire Koch [...]

Tester launches disingenuous attack on the Koch brothers

 |  Pennsylvania

With no debate and a nearly party-line vote, the state House passed a bill that eliminates a loophole in the law state defining the crime of stalking.

PA House approves ‘stalking’ bill

Section 7

FROM AROUND THE WEB

By Susan Ferrechio | Washington Examiner
The House on Thursday passed a resolution authorizing an unprecedented congressional lawsuit against President Obama over his use of executive authority to delay the employer mandate in the health insurance reform law.
The measure passed 225-201, solely with Republican votes. All Democrats and five GOP lawmakers voted against it.
The resolution gives House GOP leaders the green light to begin building a [...]

U.S. House votes to sue president over Obamacare decision

By J.D. Tuccille | Reason
Fear no more that heart-in-throat moment when a police officer knocks on your driver’s side window and you think to yourself, “oh shit. Now what?” Because the answer is to just put the car in gear and cruise away—at least, if you live in Wisconsin. Earlier this month, the state’s Supreme [...]

In Wisconsin, if a cop taps on your window just drive away

By Delaney Foreman | Freedom Foundation
The Washington State Department of Ecology’s $200,000 grant to a brewery it once regulated out of business — taking with it 400 local jobs — comes 10 years too late and with a great deal of irony.
Excessive DOE red tape forced the Miller Brewing Co. to close its iconic Tumwater brewery in [...]

WA ecology department grants $200K to brewery it once regulated out of business

By Wayne Lusvardi | Cal Watchdog
The California Energy Commission’s Public Interest Energy Research Program has produced a dry cleaning machine that uses CO2. The carbon-based cleaning process replaces perchoroethylene chemical-based dry cleaning.
The machine is being tested by the Aramark uniform cleaning corporation in Los Angeles. Colorado-based firm C02Nexus received a $396,200 CEC grant on Dec. 3, 2009 to develop an alternative [...]

California funds dry cleaners’ shift to CO2

By Susan Ferrechio | Washington Examiner
The odds of legislation addressing the border crisis soon just got a little longer.
Though both Democrats and Republicans in Congress want to address the recent influx of unaccompanied minors at the southern border before the August recess starts, a deal looks farther away than ever.
Here are four reasons why:
Read more [...]

4 reasons Congress may not pass border bill before recess

By Rick Brundrett | The Nerve
On the McAngus Goudelock & Courie law firm’s website, Columbia attorney M. McMullen Taylor is listed as the board chairperson of Congaree Riverkeeper, a nonprofit environmental organization dedicated to protecting Midlands rivers.
Taylor also is one of two lawyers from the 137-attorney firm representing the city of Columbia in defending a [...]

Attorney plays both sides in Columbia water-sewer fund controversy

By Nic Horton | The Arkansas Project
Last week, the D.C. circuit court ruled in Halbig v. Burwell that Obamacare subsidies cannot flow into state that are participating in the federally-run exchange. If the ruling holds (it will almost certainly be appealed), this could be a game changer for the federal health care law: currently, only 14 states [...]

Arkansas now moves toward state-based Obamacare exchange

By James Poulos | Cal Watchdog
The California Republican party has a lot riding on Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin.
She’s the only prominent Republican who carried a strong lead into the recent “jungle” primary elections for statewide office, under which the top two candidates, regardless of party (or no party), advance to a November runoff. Swearengin sat [...]

Pot politics could inhale California controller’s race

By Elizabeth Harrington | Washington Free Beacon
The National Park Service is spending $140,368 to fly 10 students to Sydney, Australia so they can experience a “climate change journey.”
The government announced last week they are paying for the group to attend the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s World Parks Congress, a global conference on conservation this Fall.
The [...]

Taxpayers foot $140K for 10 students’ ‘climate change journey’ to Australia