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NEWS
September 15, 2014 | By Thomas Fitzgerald, Inquirer Politics Writer
Gov. Corbett took Pennsylvania voters to school last week in "Statistics Class," a 30-second TV spot, complete with bar graphs, that asserts he has increased state education spending to "its highest level ever. " Democratic challenger Tom Wolf "and his special-interest friends," Corbett says into the camera, "have spent millions trying to mislead you that I cut education spending. " Wolf responded with his sharpest attack ad yet, a compendium of news clippings that say Corbett "took an ax" to schools with a $1 billion cut in education dollars that caused 27,000 layoffs and big jumps in local property taxes.
NEWS
September 14, 2014 | By Chris Hepp, Inquirer Staff Writer
Visit Philadelphia acted properly two years ago when it discovered that its chief financial officer had misappropriated $210,000, the regional marketing agency's attorney said Friday. The publicly funded agency chose not to alert law enforcement to the misuse of funds, but dealt with the matter internally, allowing the CFO, Joyce Levitt, to resign without criminal charges in exchange for restitution. Levitt went on to work for another publicly funded nonprofit. The fund misuse and how Visit Philadelphia handled the matter are now under the scrutiny of the District Attorney's Office.
NEWS
September 12, 2014 | By Maddie Hanna, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
EAST BRUNSWICK, N.J. - They bashed President Obama, praised each other's leadership, and shared a hug on stage. Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and Gov. Christie, who campaigned for Romney in the run-up to the 2012 election, were together again Wednesday - this time at a fund-raiser for the New Jersey Republican Party that doubled as a 52d birthday celebration for Christie. And this time Christie, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, is the one publicly mulling a bid for the Republican nomination in 2016 - though he assured attendees Wednesday night that he was focused on his "main job" as governor.
NEWS
September 12, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Paula Rae Barvin, 57, of Elkins Park, a professional fund-raiser who developed amyotrophic lateral sclerosis two years ago and wrote powerfully about her experience with the disease, died Thursday, Sept. 4, at her home. Born in Houston, Ms. Barvin graduated from Barnard College with a bachelor's degree in history. She had a long career as a fund-raiser for environmental and consumer rights organizations, including New Jersey Citizen Action, New Jersey Environmental Federation, and Pennsylvania Public Interest Coalition.
NEWS
September 10, 2014 | BY SOLOMON LEACH, REGINA MEDINA & DANA DiFILIPPO, Daily News Staff Writers leachs@phillynews.com, 215-854-5903
AS 130,000 CHILDREN marked the first day of classes in the city's public schools yesterday, many brought with them the usual sense of hope and excitement. But in many cases, those feelings were tempered by frustration about constant budget cuts and the dark cloud of potentially massive layoffs if lawmakers in Harrisburg do not approve a cigarette tax to help the beleaguered district close an $81 million gap. "So, budget notwithstanding, we're excited," Superintendent William Hite said at the LINC - one of three new district high schools open to all students - where he and Mayor Nutter welcomed students and staff.
NEWS
September 9, 2014 | By Erin Arvedlund, Inquirer Staff Writer
When he heard about nurses in Africa dying from the Ebola virus, Leo Geain of Delaware County called his mother in Liberia. "I speak with her every day, but she works with TB patients," he said with a nervous smile. As a nurse in the local hospital in Liberia's capital city, Monrovia, Geain's mother, Martha, also treats patients with leprosy in a Ministry of Health hospital ward; his father works in a drugstore. Both his parents could easily be exposed to the deadly virus. Luckily, Geain's parents are fine.
BUSINESS
September 2, 2014 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Incredibly, New Jersey does not publish the multimillion-dollar fees it pays to the private investment contractors it hires to manage billions in state pension funds - unlike Pennsylvania and other states, which list those charges in annual reports and post the data online. When I asked for the list of what New Jersey has paid each investment manager since it started hiring them a few years back, the state Treasury Department spokesman at first said it wasn't public information.
REAL_ESTATE
August 31, 2014 | By Erin Arvedlund, Inquirer Staff Writer
The West Philly Tool Library has launched a $10,000 crowdfunding campaign to keep its membership fees low and buy new tools. Since 2007, the Tool Library has helped homeowners save thousands of dollars on tools they would otherwise have to buy; instead they borrow. The Tool Library lends 1,200 tools to members every month, a 35 percent increase over last year, said director Peter Foreman-Murray. Since its founding, the library has grown to 1,700 members. "Trouble is, we can't meet the demand," said Foreman-Murray.
NEWS
August 25, 2014
ISSUE | SCHOOLS Earth to Harrisburg State Rep. Kate Harper's letter (Aug. 21) criticized an editorial that correctly described the legislature's lack of interest in helping schools ("It isn't just city schools," Aug. 17). She claimed that there is strong support for passing a city-only cigarette tax, as if that would be some huge favor. She didn't mention that the tax was a last-ditch proposal by city officials to make up for lackluster state funding. Harper claims Philadelphia gets more money from the state each year without any accountability.
NEWS
August 25, 2014 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
HARVINDER KAUR worked as a nurse in her home country of India. After she moved to Upper Darby with her husband, she hoped to work in the same field. "I was very scared when I came here," Kaur, 35, said yesterday. She didn't want to work in a store. "I thought if I do any other job [other than nursing], I would lose my skills," she said. With the help of the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians, a Center City-based nonprofit economic-development organization, Kaur was able to get her certified-nursing-assistant license and land her first job here.
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