September 9, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - Pennsylvania has done a poor job informing local law enforcement agencies about new requirements to report the number of untested rape kits, the state auditor general said Wednesday. Eugene DePasquale said confusing information from the state Department of Health and other agencies may have contributed to incomplete reporting on a testing backlog that critics have said could stifle sex-assault investigations. "This inadequate communication contributed to a low participation rate by law enforcement agencies, which in turn caused an undercounting of kits awaiting testing," he said at a news conference.
August 3, 2016 |
Alex Bonavitacola, 85, of Haverford, a Philadelphia Common Pleas Court judge for 28 years, who was hailed for clearing a staggering backlog of cases in the 1990s, died Friday, July 29, of heart failure at Beaumont at Bryn Mawr. Elected in 1973, Judge Bonavitacola was a president judge for five years and chairman of the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania, overseeing Common Pleas, Municipal, and Traffic Courts. He was one of only a few judges who served in Family Court, Orphans' Court, and criminal court, all divisions of Common Pleas Court.
November 11, 2015 |
TRENTON - Long-awaited decisions by Gov. Christie on legislation involving Atlantic City and New Jersey's voting laws headlined Monday's activity here, but the Republican governor took action on dozens of other bills that passed the Legislature in June. Christie, who was headed for Milwaukee for Tuesday's Republican presidential debate, signed legislation on topics ranging from firearms and domestic violence to standardized testing to bestiality. Guns and domestic violence. Christie rejected a proposal that sought to restrict access to firearms for those accused of domestic violence, saying it "substantially restates New Jersey's existing laws.
October 30, 2015 |
THE CITY'S fiscal watchdog said yesterday that a backlog of appeals from property owners is holding up millions of dollars in critical revenue for the city and the school district. Suzanne Biemiller, chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority, told the Board of the Revision of Taxes in a letter that 2,557 of the 29,522 appeals for this year and last year have yet to be heard. Those unheard cases represent more than $6 billion in assessed value. She called for the BRT - a seven-member board appointed by city judges - to speed up the appeals process.
April 22, 2015 |
New Jersey lawmakers on Monday scrutinized the state's handling of thousands of low-income residents' Medicaid applications, as the Christie administration asserted it had made progress in reducing the backlog. Gov. Christie expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, and 400,000 residents have gained health insurance through the government program since 2014. However, thousands of applications have languished at understaffed county welfare agencies, in part because of the state's antiquated computer systems.
April 15, 2015 |
More than 30,000 inquiries sent to Philadelphia's Veterans Affairs benefits office were left to languish, on average for almost a year, according to an internal investigation. That finding was one of several outlined in a searing report released Wednesday by the VA's Inspector General. During their 10-month probe, investigators also confirmed data manipulation, poor working conditions and shoddy-record keeping. "We substantiated serious issues involving mismanagement and distrust of [office]
February 17, 2015 |
Villanova University law professor Michele Pistone sensed the growing problem in the nation's asylum system even before new data released this month presented a stark picture of the backlog. "For 15 years, I could count on getting appointments for [asylum] interviews" promptly at the regional office in Newark, N.J., she said. "Students could start a [client's] case and have it adjudicated by the end of the semester. "This year, for the first time, that's not happening," she said, and appointments her students requested in September still have no interview dates.
December 30, 2014 |
Since New Jersey expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, its efforts to enroll thousands of low-income residents have been hampered by low staffing and antiquated technology. Gov. Christie championed the expansion, and, indeed, 300,000 New Jersey adults have enrolled in Medicaid, the federal program for the poor and disabled, since President Obama's health-care law took effect in October 2013. Many gained coverage directly through online state and federal portals. Yet an estimated 11,000 others, whom experts describe as some of the state's most vulnerable citizens, have received no response to their applications.
December 10, 2014 |
PHILADELPHIA has a problem with too many unwanted and overgrown trees, which could prove hazardous to people, a City Council committee was told yesterday. Due to budget constraints, there is a backlog of 3,161 tree-removal requests and a backlog of 9,796 requests for tree pruning, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Michael DiBerardinis said during an information hearing convened by Council's Committee on Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs. "The facts are, we are behind," said DiBerardinis, who laid the blame on the department's inadequate budget.
August 26, 2014 |
In May, police in Falls Township, Bucks County, pulled over Corey Sean Mcgrogan after getting a call about an intoxicated driver on West Trenton Avenue. Officers searched Mcgrogan's jeep and allegedly found a crack pipe, a syringe with suspected heroin residue, and 20 pills of what appeared to be Xanax, the prescription anxiety medication. Mcgrogan, 35, was charged with misdemeanor counts of drug possession and paraphernalia as well as careless driving. Three months later, he's still waiting for a district judge to review his case and decide if it should go to trial.