Week in Review: GOP lawmaker calling increase to minimum wage highlights odd week

By   /  January 30, 2015  /  Pennsylvania  /  No Comments

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By PA Independent Staff
It was a strange week in Pennsylvania.
At the state Capitol, the former executive director of the Office of Open Records kept working, despite the fact new Gov. Tom Wolf fired him last week and locked him out of his office this week.
Then there was state Sen. Scott Wagner, R-York, calling for an […]

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Governor bans natural gas drilling on state-owned land

By   /  January 30, 2015  /  Energy and Environment, Issues, News, Pennsylvania, State Budgets, State Government  /  No Comments

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By Eric Boehm | Watchdog.org
Pennsylvania won’t be opening up more of its state parks and forests to gas drillers, at least under Gov. Tom Wolf’s watch.
Wolf issued an executive order Thursday prohibiting the state from leasing more land within state-owned parks and forests – about 370,000 acres have already been leased – for the purposes […]

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Advocates say Pennsylvania can do more for charter schools

By   /  January 30, 2015  /  Education, News, Pennsylvania  /  No Comments

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Pennsylvania could be a lot friendlier to public charter schools.

That’s the message delivered by a pair of independent reports that call for an equitable funding formula and more hospitable policies for the state’s charter schools.

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Wilkes-Barre could be test case for more ACLU action against one-strike ordinances

By   /  January 29, 2015  /  Local Government, Local News, News, Pennsylvania  /  No Comments

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By Andrew Staub | PA Independent
Adam Peters lost thousands of dollars when the city of Wilkes-Barre shuttered one of his rental properties for six months using a controversial one-strike ordinance.
The same law cost Elizabeth Mattern and her 4-year-old daughter even more — their home.
Now, Peters and Mattern are part of a small group of landlords and […]

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Audit: Pennsylvania fire chiefs stole $20,000, other spending unexplained

By   /  January 29, 2015  /  Local News, Misuse of funds, News, Pennsylvania, Power Abuse  /  No Comments

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A state audit released Tuesday confirmed the crimes of a former volunteer fire chief and his assistant chief, and also laid out another $13,000 in unexplained spending. Baldwin Borough Manager John Barrett has worked closely with first responders and firefighters, and told Watchdog, “As a whole, they’re such good-hearted people. It’s hard to believe two individuals in that field would betray the public trust.”

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Philadelphia sizes up more charter schools

By   /  January 29, 2015  /  Education, Pennsylvania  /  No Comments


The School District of Philadelphia could be on the verge of a historic expansion of the city’s charter school program.

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