What does a veto say?

What does a veto say?

As the new fiscal year is likely to begin without a fully enacted budget, The PLS Reporter caught up with Republican leaders to talk about what they see as the likely scenario for how a veto is likely to play out and what it means.

“If he does veto any aspects of these bills we’re sending him, what he’s really saying is: ‘I want to increase your taxes’,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson). “That’s the message people don’t want to say, but what they’re saying is that if you’re not for this I just want to increase your taxes.”

He said that message doesn’t pass “the red face test.”

Sen. Scarnati stated the General Assembly is sending the governor a no-tax-increase budget along with a pension reform plan that provides significant savings and a liquor privatization plan that gives Pennsylvania consumers the convenience they ask for while getting the state out of the liquor business.

“I absolutely believe that the proposals that we’re sending are true, good proposals for the taxpayers and voters of Pennsylvania,” he added. 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Senate Democrats say working with Republicans is a frustrating affair

Senate Democrats say working with Republicans is a frustrating affair

Talk to Senate Democrats about what it’s like working with Republican counterparts in the Senate and the buzz word is “frustrating.”

Frustrating, they say, in both trying to advance their proposals and then also receive credit for legislation they’ve sponsored that passes under a different bill number and with a Republican co-sponsor.

“It’s certainly frustrating, this whole process has been frustrating,” Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) told The PLS Reporter Monday. “It’s been very frustrating for us through this whole process, the unwillingness to want to move on some of these issues.”

One particularly scorned member of the Senate Democratic Caucus is Sen. Rob Teplitz (D-Dauphin) who has had two proposals he’s put forward advance in the Senate, though without him being named as a sponsor or getting credit for the legislation.

Monday, June 29, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Liquor privatization bill forges ahead amid concerns over job losses

Liquor privatization bill forges ahead amid concerns over job losses

A compromise plan to privatize Pennsylvania’s liquor stores forged ahead Sunday evening as House Bill 466 was amended and later passed by the Senate Law and Justice Committee.

The measure now moves to the Senate Floor where it is anticipated to be passed, along with pension reform and the budget and other related bills, by the conclusion of legislative business Tuesday.

“We have an agreed-to product with the House, it certainly hasn’t been easy,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson), who sponsored the amendment comprising the plan. “Clearly constituents in my district—a very rural area that may see less convenience—they want to see privatization, that’s what they’ve asked for because they feel the state should be out of this business.”

According to the proposal, state-owned retail wine and spirits stores will be closed based upon a formula where the Liquor Control Board will be instructed that if one of the two of the closest licensees to a state-owned store is actively selling alcohol in the manner of a state-owned wine and spirits store, then the state-owned store will be forced to shut down.

Sunday, June 28, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Education funding debate highlighted budget’s first Senate step

Education funding debate highlighted budget’s first Senate step

The first step for the Senate in the continued movement of a Republican crafted FY 2015-2016 spending plan saw the legislation move out of the Senate Appropriations Committee along a straight party-line vote Sunday evening.

However, the committee action was permeated with debate over education funding after committee Minority Chairman Vincent Hughes (D-Philadelphia) offered an amendment to fund education at the level proposed by Gov. Tom Wolf.

It was the second of three amendments Sen. Hughes offered to the budget bill.

“To say that the education investment proposal in House Bill 1192 is reflective of the needs and concerns of the people of the Commonwealth really does not make sense,” he said. “It shows folks are out of touch with what’s going on in the community.”

Sunday, June 28, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Are budget stakeholders being told to prepare for a budget impasse?

Are budget stakeholders being told to prepare for a budget impasse?

As the July 1 start to the FY 2015-2016 is fast approaching and the possibility of a veto from Gov. Tom Wolf for a Republican-crafted budget plan looms, are lawmakers telling those that rely on state budget dollars to prepare for a long-term budget stalemate?

It depends on who one asks.

Sunday, June 28, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
RSS
First100101102103104105106107108109Last