12/3 Morning Buzz

GOP State Rep. Mike Fleck made history this weekend when he announced he’s gay. We list where members of Pa.’s Republican delegation stand on the Norquist anti-tax pledge they signed. Bob Mellow is going to jail and more. Good morning politicos, here’s the Buzz.

Republican State Rep. Mike Fleck: I’m Gay: State Rep. Mike Fleck (R-Huntingdon) publicly acknowledged Saturday that he is gay, making him the first openly gay lawmaker in Pa. and the only sitting openly gay Republican state legislator in the entire country.

List: Where Pa. Republicans Stand on the Norquist Tax Pledge: We asked Pa. Republican members of Congress where they stand on Grover Norquist’s ATR pledge. Spoiler: they have more hedges than a fancy English estate.

Mellow Sentenced to 16 Months: Former Senate Democratic Leader Bob Mellow has been sentenced to 16 months in prison for using official staffers to conduct campaign work.

Obama Pushes Fiscal Cliff Plan in Montco: President Obama visited The Rodon Group Friday as part of his tour to promote his plan to avoid the so-called ‘fiscal cliff.’ The Montgomery County company manufactures K’NEX and Tinkertoy parts, among others.

11/30 Ups & Downs: It’s been a good week for Pa.’s GOP congressional delegation overall, plus a few others. See who made progress and who fell behind.

Capitolwire: Ousted Dems Land Caucus Jobs: Outgoing state Reps. Joe Brennan (D-Lehigh) and Ken Smith (D-Lackawanna) didn’t win new terms on election day but they’ll be coming back to Harrisburg for work anyway.

Statewide
State House Sound Bites: Corbett assesses his term, two years in
PA Independent: WATCHBLOG: Former Senate Leader Mellow sentenced to 16 months in prison
PA Independent: WATCHBLOG: Two departing state Reps to continue being paid by taxpayers
PA Independent: WATCHBLOG: Rep. Fleck is first openly gay GOP lawmaker in Pennsylvania
PA Independent: Corbett considers removal of oil tax cap
PA Independent: Corbett on no-tax pledge — I keep my promises
PA Independent: WATCHBLOG: Pittsburgh sees post-recession recovery, analysis finds
PA Independent: Week in Review: Corbett, lawmakers prep for next year
PA Independent: Scranton commuter tax faces widespread opposition
StateImpactPA: U.S. Senate Gives Navy Biofuel Program A Second Chance
StateImpactPA: Former EPA Regulator Says Feds Could Provide More Fracking Oversight
StateImpactPA: Corbett Mulls Lifting Cap On Gasoline Tax
StateImpactPA: Drill Bits: Rendell Weighs In On NY Fracking Ban
Capitolwire: Gov. Corbett Q n A on pensions
Capitolwire: Ten percent cut in pension multiplier, other options being considered for administration pension reform
Capitolwire: Corbett favors expanded Lottery gambling to generate revenue
Capitolwire: Corbett Q n A on Pennsylvania Lottery, Voter ID
Capitolwire: Sandusky/Kane/Penn State Q n A with Gov. Corbett
Capitolwire: Two ousted House Democrats given caucus jobs
Capitolwire: Corbett says AG approach will decide if he will speak to Kane’s Sandusky case investigators.
Capitolwire: Corbett says PA’s economy ‘heading in the right direction.’

Philadelphia
Philadelphia Inquirer: Nutter and local leaders tour Tianjin, Philadelphia’s sister city
Philadelphia Inquirer: Karen Heller: Tireless advocate for youth had ‘real and genuine passion’
Philadelphia Inquirer:  Tom Fitzgerald, the Norquists of the left
Philadelphia Inquirer: Tense attitudes in Thursday’s council meeting
Philadelphia Inquirer: City GOP seeking balance
Philly Clout: Rendell flips wig over four year old dig about his lack of hair
Philly Clout: City Controller uses “The Office” for sensitivity training
Philly Clout: Clarke tweaks zoning proposal related to parking requirements
WHYY Newsworks: Obama visits PA toy factory
Phillynow: Despite signs of compromise, PA GOP says “no” to tax hike
KYW Newsradio: Corbett stands behind Norquist’s anti tax pledge

SEPA
Delco Daily Times: Obama supporters, protesters make voices heard during Montco visit (With Video)
Delco Daily Times: Corbett visits Chesco library to sign Pileggi bill
Montgomery Media: President Obama makes pitch for action on tax cuts during stop at Hatfield business
Bucks Local News: Pennsylvania Task Force on Child Protection issues report to General Assembly in wake of Sandusky scandal

Pittsburgh
Early Returns: Corbett mulls lifting fuel tax cap
Early Returns: McCord: brilliant babbler, gov candidate
Post-Gazette: Ex-Pa. lawmaker Mellow gets 16 months in prison
Post-Gazette: Corbett still honing relationship with Pa. Legislators
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh mayoral race begins to take shape

Southwest
Altoona Mirror: U.S. government releases once secret Watergate files

NEPA
AP: Pressuring GOP, Obama takes his fiscal plan to Pa.
AP: Feds charges ex-Philly city worker in supply scam
AP: Ex-Sen. Mellow to be sentenced today
AP: Ex-Sen. Mellow sentenced to 16 months
AP: Ex-Pa. lawmaker Mellow gets 16 months in prison
AP: Central Pa. GOP lawmakers tells newspaper he is gay
Times Leader: Mellow gets prison
The Dallas Post: Council makes 2013 financial decisions
Sunday Dispatch: Yudichak issues reminder about tax rebates
Sunday Dispatch: Exeter faces $400,000 budget shortfall
Times-Tribune: Personal income grows by fastest pace since recession
Times-Tribune: Luzerne County Council members mulling amendments to 2013 budget
Times-Tribune: Mellow means well and has done good works during his 40 years of public service, supporters tell judge
Times-Tribune: Lackawanna College decides not to change mellow theatre name
Times-Tribune: Smith words for Dems caucus
Times-Tribune: Mellow sentencing comes on auspicious anniversary
Times-Tribune: Scranton falls short on nonprofit commitments
Times-Tribune: Mellow gets 16 months in federal prison
Times-Tribune: Storm clouds potent
Times-Tribune: Continual state budgets hurt United Way programs
Citizens Voice: County budget options on table
Citizens Voice: Letters attest to Mellow’s character
News Item: Now, municipalities will pay
Wayne Independent: Nominations and board appointments approved
Standard Speaker: Councilman wants accuracy on revenues in county budget
Pocono Record: Pa. pension cuts would face legal fight
Pocono Record: Corbett to cooperate on Sandusky probe

South Central
The Sentinel: Lancaster mayor: Amtrak plans ‘botched’
The Sentinel: Proposed budget features no tax increase in Middlesex Township
AP: Central Pa. GOP lawmaker Mike Fleck comes out as gay
AP: Gov. Tom Corbett joins talks about transportation funding, lawmaker says
AP: Ex-Pennsylvania lawmaker Robert Mellow gets 16 months in prison
AP: Former lawmakers keep Pa. benefits in new jobs
The Patriot-News: Pennsylvania lawmakers’ automatic pay increase takes effect today
The Patriot-News: What local Pa. lawmakers will be doing with the cost-of-living adjustment to their pay
The Patriot-News: Taxes won’t go up in Hampden Township despite $4M budget hike
The Patriot-News: Pennsylvania pension cuts would apply to all, Gov. Tom Corbett says
York Daily Record: Underage drinking penalties in Pennsylvania to increase by Christmas Eve
York Daily Record: Fiscal cliff: Scott Perry won’t sign Grover Norquist’s no-tax pledge, but stresses spending cuts
York Daily Record: Sen. Bob Casey supports filibuster reform
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: Corbett talks bipartisanship; Dems wait for proof
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: A look at major legislation under Corbett
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: $12 million in Philadelphia budget cuts restored
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: Judge ousts convicted Erie County councilman
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: 10 state attorneys general oppose gun permit law
Roxbury News: PA Capitol Rotunda: Wall of shame? Senator Mellow
Roxbury News: Former Senator Mellow: 16 months in prison

Lehigh Valley
Morning Call: Obama to Republicans: Don’t be Scrooge on middle-class taxes

North by Northwest
Campaign ’12 Blog: Kelly gets Ways and Means assignment
Campaign ’12 blog: Three new Erie-area lawmakers officially begin their jobs
Williamsport Sun Gazette Corbett: Pension cuts need to hit politicians
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Governor may work with inquiry into case-building

Opinions
Times-Tribune: Kelly: Pot, meth net life in prison. Abusing public trust? 16 months
Times-Tribune: Chance to fix property tax
Times-Tribune: Governor sees light on pensions
Times-Tribune: Ensure funds to help protect kids
Times-Tribune: Democracy multilingual
Times-Tribune: Strong Mellow weakly opposed
Philadelphia Inquirer: Time for Morsi to pay heed
Citizens Voice: Audit kept secret is a public matter
Citizens Voice: Stabilize pension benefit system
Citizens Voice: Agencies must be ready to respond
News Item: Property tax reform is long overdue
News Item: PLCB should not compete in private sector
News Item: Response as important as report in child abuse
The Sentinel: Guest Editorial: Commissioners should engage us, strive for efficiency
phillyburbs.com: The peculiar geography of the American electorate
The Patriot-News: Editorial: The president’s judicial nominees should get approval
The Patriot-News: Working families should be a priority
The Patriot-News: Foreign affairs are pivotal
The Patriot-News: Editorial: State could field quite a prison term
The Patriot-News: COLA: Annual charity event for the legislature
The Patriot-News: Op-ed: Create property tax alternative
The Patriot-News: Editorial: Norquist’s folly. It’s time to ditch the no-tax pledge
Delco Daily Times: U.S. drifts further from Founding Fathers vision
Delco Daily Times: EDITORIAL: Fiscal cliff hangs over mount of hysteria
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: All aboard for…
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: Voter ID fibs
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: Overhaul child-abuse statutes
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: Teetering on the fiscal cliff: only the littlest people bear the brunt

Blogs
Keystone Politics: How to stop Philly traffic Court Corruption
Keystone Politics: Why property assessment is so screwed up in Pennsylvania, and what to do about it
Keystone Politics: High housing and transportation costs and wage politics
Keystone Politics: Pittsburgh is one of just three major US cities in recovery, but you’d never know it Reading PA media
Keystone Politics: Really Dems?
Pittston Politics: Former Exeter Councilman smartest politician in Luzerne County
Pittston Politics: Linskey email suggests minutes be altered for lawsuit
The Pittsburgh Progressive: News & Notes December 2, 2012
The Pennsylvania Progressive: Discounting lives to maximize profits

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