2/17 Morning Buzz

Good morning politicos, and welcome to the buzz. The candidates are ready, the ballot is set, and campaign season is a go. All we need now are the maps.

Don’t forget to check later for this week’s Ups & Downs.

Final List: Pa Ballot 2012: Here it is, the list of every candidate for office in Pa. in 2012. The deadline for Pa. House and Senate candidates to file was 5pm.

New Proxy Fight in Redistricting Showdown: House Minority Leader Frank Dermody sent a letter to Speaker Sam Smith this morning requesting that he issue writs of election to replace the six lawmakers who left office after the 2011 elections.

Obama Campaign Launches PA “Truth Team”: The Obama campaign is relaunching its fact-checker for the 2012 election, including a Pa. department. And just in time for a birther-style ballot challenge in the Keystone State.

NYT on Philly Papers: Yesterday we highlighted the Bissinger op-ed, and today here is the New York Times article that has a lot of reporters and politicos talking. Writers at the Inky, DN and Philly.com are concerned that the buyers might invade the newsroom – indeed there are already signs of it happening.

Philadelphians Generally Approve of Nutter: The Pew Charitable Trusts has been taking periodic polls of Philadelphians to see what they think of city government and to rate the job performance of 2nd term mayor, Michael Nutter.

Pro-Lifers Back Murphy: Two politically active pro-life organizations – National Right to Life PAC and the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation PAC – have endorsed Rep. Tim Murphy against a conservative primary challenger.

United Transportation Union Endorses Critz: Mark Critz’s campaign announced today that he has received the endorsement of the United Transportation Union (UTU) in the 12th Congressional race. Critz is facing fellow incumbent Jason Altmire in the Democratic primary in the new district.

The “Legislative Election Updates” section is taking a break today, because giving news updates for individual districts makes little sense. See our top stories for those details, and see you Monday.

National:
Capitolwire: OFF THE FLOOR: Santorum explanation of working women passage from book changed since 2006
AP: GOP Senators unveil new Medicare overhaul plan
Early Returns: Santorum attacks Romney in Detroit
Slate: Final pre-Super Tuesday debate crumbles after Romney drops out
USA Today: Poll shows Santorum leading in Michigan
USA Today: Michigan Gov. Snyder endorses Romney
USA Today: CBO projects 8%-plus unemployment through 2014
USA Today: Santorum requests Secret Service protection
USA Today: Santorum releases tax returns for 2007-2010
Pro Publica: Federal rules to disclose fracking chemicals could have some exceptions
The Caucus: Santorum tells Michigan of strict opposition to all bailouts
The Caucus: In Michigan, Romney criticizes unions
The Caucus: Five ways Romney can attack Santorum (and why they may not work)
The Hill: Pelosi rips GOP for lack of female witnesses at birth control hearing
The Hill: House passes GOP energy bill, 237-187, that approves Keystone XL
Politico: Payroll tax deal vote could come Friday
Politico: Maine GOP recounting caucus votes

Statewide:
Capitol Ideas: Top House Democrat wants to move ahead with special elections
Capitol Ideas: In PLCB budget hearing: Privatization gets short shrift over modernization
Capitol Ideas: With transportation funding, baby steps rule
PA Independent: PA Moves forward with health-care exchange despite unknowns
PA Independent: PA Liquor Board could pour $150M into state coffers
StateImpactPA: Leading public health official says impact fee law violates medical ethics
StateImpactPA: Federal money goes toward drilling training at Butler County School
StateImpactPA: Drill Bits: Another challenge to the impact fee, big oil eyes range, and Talisman scales back in the Marcellus
StateImpactPA: Impact Fee authors say public health expert’s fears unfounded
StateImpactPA: Industry objects to federal plans to regulate fracking on public lands
StateImpactPA: While natural gas prices fall, gasoline rises
Capitolwire: State Police personnel issues worsening, causing concern the agency won’t be able to fulfill its duties
Capitolwire: Corman, Pippy say bills to provide more PLCB state revenue have support
AP: Conflicting pictures of Veon drawn as trial opens
AP: Pa. House Dem leader wants votes to fill vacancies
Early Returns: “Truth Squad” readies for political battle
WJAC: Corbett: Funding cuts not responsible for tuition increase
Politico: Fears over an Ed Rendell-owned Inquirer
WHYY Newsworks: Electricity deregulation cuts tax revenue in Pa.
WHYY Newsworks: Leading Public Health official says impact fee law violates medical ethics

Philadelphia:
Sacramento Bee: Congressman Fattah sponsors higher education workshop on Feb. 20, “Making College Pay: Tax Breaks for Students and Families”
Daily News: Renovations complete, Hall bell to toll Saturday
Daily News: Bill to modernize PPA tix appeals
Inquirer: Council is getting down to real business
Philly Now: Mayor Nutter, DA Williams, others unveil Obama ‘ Truth Team’
WHYY Newsworks: White HOuse officials meet in Philly to talk LGBT health
WHYY Newsworks Bill in Harrisburg would make it easier to overturn Philly’s “lost or stolen” gun law

SEPA:
Inquirer: Chesco judge, accused of misconduct, faces prosecution
Fox Philadelphia: Bucks Catholic school wins its appeal
KYW Newsradio Veterans discount program expanding in Bucks county
Pottstown Mercury State reimbursement cuts could undermine area school projects
Delco Times Folcroft council meeting turns heated over firing
Montgomery Media: Changes to curriculum, grading system approved by Abington school board
Montgomery Media: Lawmakers race the clock to redraw legislative district maps
Bucks Local News: End of year review shows Lower Makefield is financially stable

Pittsburgh:
Tribune-Review: Pittsburgh police officer charged with bribery, oppression
Tribune-Review: Environmental group plans suit against Pittsburgh hospital, health department
Tribune-Review: Auditor General to probe contracts with Torrance, other state hospitals
Post-Gazette: Fitzgerald recommends new Allegheny County solicitor
Post-Gazette: City council considers expansion of permit parking
Early Returns: Santorum attacks Romney in Detriot
Early Returns: Santorum backer: asprin was contraceptive
Early Returns: Critz gets 9th union nod
Early Returns: Murphy gets pro-life endorsement
KDKA: Washington Co. Commissioners appeal reassessment ruling
KDKA: Pittsburgh Bureau of Police officer arrested

Southwest:
Beaver County Times: Turnpike commission eying Beaver River Bridge replacement project
Beaver County Times: Economy may seek freedom from Ambridge
Observer-Reporter: Union Township looks to secede from Ringgold
Observer-Reporter: Ringgold board votes to reopen two schools
Observer-Reporter: State plans to close Donora-Webster Bridge permanently
Observer-Reporter: County to seek Marcellus fees
Indiana Gazette: School board approves funding for renovations
Daily American: Somerset County to have two congressional primary races
Altoona Mirror: Allegheny No. 1 possible closing stirs emotion
Tribune-Democrat: Corbett visits local plant
Daily Courier: Program attempts to spark interest in oil, natural gas careers

South Central:
York Dispatch: Pittsburghers get parking for reassessment appeals
York Dispatch: Philly newspapers plan to shed 37 full-time jobs
Patriot-News: Exelon Nuclear Gives $110,000 to Dauphin County For Emergency Management Agency

Lehigh Valley:
Reading Eagle: Township pays $9,630 for spill cleanup
Reading Eagle: Berks industrial sector on the upswing
WFMZ: PA lawmaker holds public meeting on prolonged outages
WFMZ: Executive: County on solid ground financially
WFMZ: Reassessment to lower taxes for most homeowners
Morning Call: Lower Saucon officials express  reservations about landfill expansion
Express Times: Northwest New Jersey and Lehigh Valley congressmen disagree on payroll tax extension

NEPA:
WNEP: State Rep. Ken Smith delinquent on over $100K in personal loans
The Times Leader: County to lay off Sheriff Gilligan
AP: Gov’t says parents need more info on apps for kids
Times Tribune: Munchak appeals conviction, sentence
Times Tribune: Carbondale board members found not guilty in sunshine violation
Times Tribune: Scranton planning commission gives Minooka development OK
Times Tribune: ACLU offers mixed review of Lackawanna prison
Times Tribune: House RACP debate focuses on jobs
Times Tribune: Dunmore board accepts retirement of facilities director
Citizen’s Voice: As Wayne County landowners push for drilling, Delaware raises new concerns
Standard Speaker: Two Butler supervisors give up health insurance reimbursement
Standard Speaker: McAdoo council signs petition to drop two members
Standard Speaker: City makes progress on budget deficit
The Daily Review: Comments on gas impact fee expected at today’s meeting of Bradford County commissioners
The Daily Review: Marino announces for second term
The Daily Review: GTP to eliminate 150 positions

North by Northwest:
Centre Daily: Benninghoff introduces legislation on reporting
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Joinder to lose 3.1 million in state budget plan
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Marino, Scollo are only candidates for 10th house seat
Williamsport Sun Gazette: U.S army reserve still empty
Courier Express: School district on the positive

Opinion:
Times Tribune: Editorial: School board undermines discipline secret intervention violates principle, slaps principal
Times Tribune: Editorial: House divided on resolution
Citizens Voice: Editorial: Combating unemployment fraud a priority
Wayne Independent: Editorial: Pedophilia is a tough matter that needs to be discussed
The Daily Review: Editorial: Overpayments are costly to everyone
Morning Call: Opinion: U.S., Pa. make road, bridge repairs a low priority
Morning Call: Opinion: New health care law lacks choice – Dainelle
Politico: Opinion: Framers’ own words condemn health care reform
Politico: Opinion: Obama clueless on transit funding
Politico: Opinion: On budget, 10 is not enough
Politico: Opinion: New global deal on climate change
Politico: Opinion: Re-imagining U.S. infastructure
Roll Call: Opinion: Nevada, Massachusetts key to Senate control
Washington Post: Opinion: President Obama’s gimmicky budget would commit the U.S. to decline
Washington Post: Opinion: How to find the best leader for the World Bank
Washington Post: Opinion: Foster Friess is a real pill on contraception
USA Today: Editorial: Payroll tax cut extension trumps fiscal responsibility
USA Today: Opinion Column: Opposing View: Debt collection aids economy
Reading Eagle:Editorial: Rohrer takes wrong turn on issue of licensing drivers
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Will impact fee meet practicality test
Patriot-News Editorial: State’s Credit Card: RACP Funds Must Be Kept Under Control
Tribune-Review: Global power is gone
Tribune-Review: Outlawing rent control
Post-Gazette: Fresh thinking: Its time to reimagine how to pay for health care
Post-Gazette: The Morrill of the story: Public universities in PA must be supported
Indiana Gazette: There’s no right to free contraception
Altoona Mirror: Address violating drillers
Inquirer: Take the deal on sick pay
Daily News: People’s editorial board weighs in on gun violence
Inquirer Can solve voting’s flaws without requiring ID
Pottstown Mercury Thursday’s Sound off
Philly Burbs: A victory for the gas industry
Delco Times: Delco ‘losing way of life’ with refinery closures
Bucks Local News: Marcellus Shale legislation protects environment, preserves local control

Blogs:
Speaking Freely (ACLU-PA): Reproductive health locked up: no contraception on lock down
Speaking Freely (ACLU-PA): Why would someone sue in favor of discrimination?
Keystone State Education Coalition: Corbett to state: “Pick your poison”
Keystone State Education Coalition: Open rebellion against standardized tests in Texas
Commonwealth Foundation: The myth that state subsides prevent college tuition jumps
Commonwealth Foundation: State liquor stores’ soviet-style socialism fails
PA Budget and Policy Center: Commonwealth Foundation spots bigfoot in Pennsylvania
Lehigh Valley Ramblings: Atiyeh sues over NIZ plans
Lehigh Valley Ramblings: Northampton County only $17M in the hole
Lehigh Valley Independent: Lehigh County reassessment tax changes by municipality
Above Average Jane: U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz honored by AMA
PennPatriot: Does anyone in Washington really want to reduce the deficit?
Keystone Politics: What is the case against equal spending per student?
Keystone Politics: Liquor privatization compromise legislation
John Hanger: Honda Civic CNG dethroned as greenest car
John Hanger: Southern Co. spends $14B on two new nuclear reactors without carbon price
John Hanger: U.S. carbon emissions from fossil fuels drop 1.2 percent in 2011

February 17th, 2012 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Morning Buzz, Top Stories | No Comments

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