September 20, 2016
The state Supreme Court's decision Friday to leave it to voters to decipher a misleading ballot question that would raise the mandatory retirement age for Pennsylvania judges from 70 to 75 is a self-serving affront to democracy. The court deadlocked earlier this month when asked to rule on litigation that questioned the ballot question's accuracy. Since it was unable to reach a decision, the high court should have allowed Commonwealth Court to review the matter. The original question, written for the April primary ballot, clearly stated its intent: to raise the retirement age from 70 to 75. But the Republican-controlled legislature changed the measure's wording at the last minute to remove any reference to the current retirement age and the primary results were voided.
September 19, 2016
Pat Browne is a Republican state senator from Lehigh County, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and a certified public accountant and tax attorney In 1834, nearly two centuries after the Duke of York conveyed the land and water of the present state of New Jersey to Lord Berkeley and Sir George Carteret, the U.S. Congress passed a compact between the states of New York and New Jersey. This compact was adopted to finally and permanently define the territorial rights over the Hudson River and the islands between the states.
September 17, 2016
Too bad it took hacks of election systems in Arizona and Illinois to draw needed attention to security problems that computer scientists have been red-flagging for 15 years. The warnings started with the computer voting response to the 2000 election between former President George W. Bush and Al Gore, in which the presidency literally hung on Florida's paper ballots. In their haste to switch to electronic machines, jurisdictions ignored the academics. Undeterred, computer scientists have been hacking machines to expose weaknesses.
September 16, 2016
Time is ticking for the state Supreme Court to let a lower panel decide whether voters should be asked to decipher a misleading question on the Nov. 8 ballot that seeks to raise the retirement age for Pennsylvania judges. The Supreme Court deadlocked earlier this month when it tried to decide whether the wording is proper. Since it was unable to reach a decision on the ballot question, which seeks to amend the state Constitution, it should let the matter be decided by the Commonwealth Court.
September 13, 2016
Like death and taxes, there are two guarantees when it comes to driving on the Pennsylvania Turnpike: potholes and toll increases. But despite nine years of annual toll hikes, the Turnpike Commission's finances have crumbled worse than the 360-mile road. In fact, the commission has amassed a debt level that is "potentially unsustainable," according to a recent audit by state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale. The audit found the commission's net position - assets minus liabilities - has ballooned from $1.76 billion in 2007 to a negative $4.11 billion in 2015.
September 13, 2016 |
If local mutual-fund giant Vanguard doesn't like a new Pennsylvania law on retirement accounts, will the state reverse it? We're about to find out. The law, which took effect Saturday, allows Pennsylvania to seize some retirement accounts three years after they're presumed abandoned - regardless of the account owner's age. Previously, the state waited until individuals reached age 701/2 before seizing retirement accounts and liquidating the...
September 12, 2016 |
Repairman Steven "Kops" Kopchinski is the kind of voter Donald Trump says he has drawn by the millions to the Republican Party. For three decades, the 54-year-old Bucks County man was a registered Democrat who never voted. A guy who grew up hearing his factory-worker father preach: "The Democrats are for the poor people. " But this year, Kopchinski found the GOP's bombastic nominee inspiring, so he changed parties and plans to vote for the billionaire instead this fall. "I just like Donald Trump," said the self-employed contractor from Bensalem, a largely working-class suburb that borders Philadelphia.
September 11, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - William Trout Wolf, 95, Gov. Wolf's father, died Friday afternoon, the governor's office announced. Mr. Wolf, who owned the York-based kitchen cabinet company that the Democratic governor and two business partners later bought, died at 3:15, the governor's office said. Funeral arrangements are pending. "In the meantime, we ask that the family's privacy be respected during this difficult time," said Wolf spokesman Jeff Sheridan. Last year, Mr. Wolf, a longtime business leader and philanthropist in York County, suffered a heart attack, the governor had said.
September 10, 2016 |
Last year's record in parentheses. 1. Pennsbury (18-3): Now two years removed from a District 1 Class 3A title, the Falcons were ousted in the quarters last year, an untimely exit the squad no doubt will use as motivation. 2. Pennridge (12-5-2): The Rams underperformed last season but have enough talent in the returning nucleus to make some noise this postseason. 3. Downingtown West (14-5): Seven starters return for the Whippets, a team that finished as the runners up in District 1 Class 3A. 4. Council Rock North (16-6-3)
September 9, 2016
The state Supreme Court's inability to decide whether a ballot question on raising the retirement age for Pennsylvania judges is misleading doesn't mean the issue is settled. The Supreme Court deadlocked last week in deciding whether a question on November's ballot to amend the state constitution was improperly worded, so the case should go back to a lower court for review. After all, the Commonwealth Court is where the plaintiffs - who include two former state Supreme Court justices - initially filed their complaint.