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6/3 Ups & Downs

Sukanya Roy. The 14-year old South Abbington native won the Scripps National Spelling Bee last night, becoming the first champ from PA since 1987. Up also to her sponsor, the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, as well as third place finisher Joanna Ye of Carlisle and her sponsor WITF.

 

Liquor Control Board. “Private liquor stores? Pish posh! What the people really want is wine that you get from a vending machine.” It appears not… Wegman’s, the grocery story with 10 of PA’s 32 wine kiosks, announced this week that they were pulling the plug on the machines.

 

Marcellus tax. One gets the sense that a tax (or impact fee, whatever) on Marcellus shale gas drilling is something of an inevitability. This week, State Rep. Nick Miccarelli (R-Delco) and State Sen. Dominic Pileggi (R-Delco) each announced a new bill to do just that. Conservative and freshman State Rep. Justin Simmons (R-Lehigh) said he would support a competitive tax or fee. And these are just the Republicans.

 

Lou Barletta. The Congressman’s office thought they would put the recording ban controversy to rest by saying there was no ban; the event in question was private, not public. Then video surfaced of a cameraman being forced to shut down, with a Barletta staffer basically acknowledging that it was a public event.
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Shapiro/Richards. The Democratic ticket for Montgomery County Commissioner had a gem of a story in the Inquirer this week, detailing some of the big name Republican donors who have given to their campaign. It means that a noteworthy amount of local money is on State Rep. Josh Shapiro and Whitemarsh Supervisor Leslie Richards to take the Board this year.
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Patrick Murphy. No loans, none of his own money, and $450,000 cash on hand. The former Congressman is wasting no time trying to make himself into the Democratic frontunner for Attorney General. It’s paying off, and these type of things tend to snowball.

 

Michael Nutter. Two months ago, the Mayor confidently unveiled a budget that restored funding to everything good and didn’t raise any taxes. Hooray! Fast forward to this week, after the reality of diminished state funding and the high cost of Philly schools set in, Nutter suggested several new tax increases – including soda and property.

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