December 27, 2010

AP: Rendell Transition Books For Corbett

Rendell Gives Corbett Transition Booklet

Rendell: Nation Of "Wussies?"

Rendell Fears We're Becoming Nation Of "Wussies" After Eagles Game Cancelled

Sen. Michael O'Pake Passes Away

Sen. Michael O'Pake (D-Berks), the currently longest-serving member of the General Assembly, died this morning at Reading Hospital from complications from heart-bypass surgery.  He was 70 years old.
          Sen. O'Pake was re-elected as Senate Democratic Whip for the 2011-12 session.
            Sen. O'Pake represented the city of Reading and surrounding areas. He was elected to the General Assembly in 1968, when he defeated the incumbent Representative for his House District in Reading, and entered the Senate in 1972.
            He had dedicated his life to the Jesuit missing of serving others.  Growing up in a federal house project, Senator O’Pake saw the problems faced by the poor at an early age and entered public service to try to make government responsive to the needs of the powerless and marginalized in our society.
            As the first chairman of the Senate Aging and Youth Committee, Senator O’Pake wrote the Child Protective Services law in Pennsylvania to help the victims of child abuse.  He fought for legislation creating the Department of Aging with Offices of Aging in all 67 counties to help senior citizens, and for property tax and rent rebates and prescription assistance for the elderly.  
            He also led legislative efforts on juvenile justice reform that removed youthful offenders from adult prisons, and, for our youngest children, was a leading advocate of the state’s landmark Children’s Health Insurance Program.
            To promote volunteerism and civic involvement, Sen. O’Pake authored the law that created PennSERVE, a permanent office of citizen service in state government and helped to provide financial and other assistance for economic development and educational opportunity throughout the region.
            Sen. O’Pake’s most recent legislation in the 2009-2010 General Assembly was signed into law by Gov. Rendell last month, establishing the Missing Endangered Person Advisory System for encouraging public involvement when alzheimer victims and other vulnerable persons are missing and need to be found.
NewsClips: Sen. Michael O'Pake Dies
                      PA Sen. O'Pake Passes Away

Monday NewsClips

Corbett Will Face Uphill Battle With Health Care Costs, Budget
What To Get Lawmakers Who Has Everything: Steelers Tickets
Click here for today's Environmental NewsClips

December 25, 2010

Saturday NewsClips

You know it's a slow political news day when this is the only NewsClip--
Click here for today's Environmental NewsClips

December 24, 2010

Dec. 27 PA Environment Digest Now Available

December 27 PA Environment Digest now available.  Click here to print this Digest.

DEP: 80 Percent Of Streams, Rivers Meet Standards, 16,547 Miles Do Not

A new report on streams and rivers with impaired water quality in Pennsylvania shows 68,320 miles meet water quality standards, but 16,547 miles do not.
            The report, entitled “2010 Pennsylvania Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report,” was submitted this week by the Department of Environmental Protection to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in accordance with the Clean Water Act, which requires each state to assess water quality within its borders.  Click here to read more…

Friday NewsClips

Thursday NewsClips

Corbett Picks Mechanicsburg Man For Budget Director
Blog: Corbett Aide Nutt To Join BrabenderCox
State Aid To Business In Doubt With Corbett

Beach Boys To Perform At Rendell Bash
Editorial: Specter Sounds Warning
Turnpike Will List Tolls On Tickets
GOP Senators Can See Orie Files First, Then DA

New Reps Marino, Barletta Pick Top Aides
With Foxwoods Out, Movement For Statewide Casino Bids Afoot
Editorial: Legislature Should Stay Out Of Gaming Licenses
Wagner To Audit Wine Kiosks
Wine Kiosks Under Fire
Flu Cases In Western PA Plummet
Highmark Explores Shipping Positions Overseas
Report Finds Pennsylvanians Lacking In Civic Activity

House Republicans Name Committee Chairs

House Republican Leadership named the chairs of their Committees--
Aging and Older Adult Services-- Rep. Tim Hennessey
Agriculture and Rural Affairs-- Rep. John Maher 
Children and Youth-- Rep. Dennis O'Brien
Commerce-- Rep. Dick Hess
Consumer Affairs-- Rep. Robert Godshall
Education-- Rep. Paul Clymer
Environmental Resources & Energy-- Rep. Scott Hutchinson
Finance-- Rep. Kerry Benninghoff
Game and Fisheries-- Rep. John Evans
Gaming Oversight-- Rep. Curt Schroder
Health-- Rep. Matt Baker
Human Services-- Rep. Gene DiGirolamo
Insurance-- Rep. Nicholas Micozzie
Judiciary-- Rep. Ron Marsico
Labor Relations-- Rep. Ron Miller
Liquor Control-- Rep. John Taylor
Local Government-- Rep. Tom Creighton
Professional Licensure-- Rep. Julie Harhart
State Government-- Rep. Daryl Metcalfe
Tourism and Recreational Development-- Rep. Jerry Stern
Transportation-- Rep. Richard Geist
Urban Affairs-- Rep. Chris Ross
Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness-- Rep. Stephen Barrar

Corbett's Newly-Appointed Chief Of Staff Moves On

Brian Nutt, who was just appointed 2 weeks ago as Gov. Tom Corbett's Chief-of-Staff, said he changed his mind and decided to take a job with the political consulting firm Brabender Cox.
            NewsClips:  Corbett's Pick For Chief Of Staff Backs Out
                                 Corbett Chief Of Staff Pick Reconsiders
                                 Corbett's Choice For Chief Of Staff Changes His Mind
                                 Blog: Corbett Aide Nutt To Join BrabenderCox

House Democrats Name Committee Chairs

House Democrats named their Committee chairs.  Note the Health and Human Services Committee has been split into two Committees-- Health and a separate Human Services Committee.  The Intergovernmental Affairs Committee was eliminated.
Aging and Older Adult Services – Rep. Lawrence Curry
Agriculture and Rural Affairs – Rep. Joseph Petrarca
Appropriations – Rep. Joseph Markosek
Children and Youth – Rep. Louise Williams Bishop
Commerce – Rep. Peter Daley
Consumer Affairs – Rep. Joseph Preston
Education – Rep. James Roebuck
Environmental Resources and Energy – Rep. Camille “Bud” George
Finance – Rep. Phyllis Mundy
Game and Fisheries – Rep. Edward Staback
Gaming Oversight – Rep. Rosita Youngblood
Health – Rep. John Myers
Human Services – Rep. Mark Cohen
Insurance – Rep. Anthony DeLuca
Judiciary – Rep. Thomas Caltagirone
Labor Relations – Rep. William Keller
Liquor Control – Rep. Dante Santoni
Local Government – Rep. Robert Freeman
Professional Licensure – Rep. Harry Readshaw
State Government – Rep. Babette Josephs
Tourism and Recreational Development – Rep. Thaddeus Kirkland
Transportation – Rep. Michael McGeehan
Urban Affairs – Rep. W. Curtis Thomas
Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness – Rep. Chris Sainato

Corbett Names Charles Zogby Budget Secretary

Gov.-elect Tom Corbett announced he intends to name Charles Zogby, 48, of Mechanicsburg, York County, as Secretary of the Budget.
            Corbett said that since 2003, Zogby has been the Senior Vice President of Education and Policy for K12 Inc., an online school curriculum developer and provider.
            Before that, Zogby served the commonwealth as the Secretary of Education under Governors Ridge and Schweiker from 2001 to 2003; and as the Director of Governor Ridge's Policy Office from 1995 to 2001.
            Corbett said that Zogby is an example of both leadership and service.
            "Our goal is to enact a responsible, commonsense budget," Corbett said. "Charles Zogby's experience and knowledge of the inner workings of state government make him an ideal choice as Budget Secretary."
            In response to the announcement, Sen. Jake Corman (R-Centre), Majority Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee said, "Charles Zogby has the experience and reputation to take on what will be a very demanding job, and I look forward to working with him in steering Pennsylvania through these trying economic times.
            "There will be no easy choices in the years ahead, and the General Assembly will have to work with the new Budget Secretary to ensure that the Commonwealth lives within its means and honors its commitment to taxpayers to operate as efficiently as possible. "I have great confidence in the ability of Charles Zogby to rise to the occasion."
            Corbett said that the Secretary of the Budget is responsible for the preparation of the Governor's budget and for its implementation after legislative enactment. He will also be responsible for maintaining the Commonwealth's accounting, payroll, debt issuance and financial reporting systems and programs.
            Zogby holds a B.A. in economics from St. Lawrence University and a J.D. with distinction from the George Mason University School of Law.
            Zogby and his wife, Georgina, have been married for 24 years and have three children.
            The Secretary of the Budget does not require Senate confirmation; however, it is a cabinet position.
                                Corbett Names Charles Zogby As Budget Secretary