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August 20th Playbook

A Pittsburgh attorney announces an exploratory committee for Lt. Governor, while a conservative group has launched ads against Reps. Matt Cartwright and Susan Wild. Here is the Playbook. 

 

Pittsburgh Attorney Announces Exploratory Committee for Lt. Governor: Steve Irwin, an original equity partner with Leech Tishman, said that he’s exploring a run for the statewide office because he believes in “dignity, humanity, and respect for all” and thinks that he is “uniquely qualified” for the position.

Conservative Group Drops Quarter Mil Against Cartwright and Wild: The American Action Network is hitting Reps. Matt Cartwright and Susan Wild on the proposed $3.5 trillion spending plan in a 30 second spot.

‘Pa. GOP lawmaker says the cause for a forensic election investigation is ‘weakened and diminished’’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “saying his cause had “been weakened and diminished,” a Republican state lawmaker behind an Arizona-style investigation of Pennsylvania’s election results has pressed pause on the probe. The announcement from state Sen. Doug Mastriano, R-Franklin, came during a since-deleted Thursday morning Facebook live stream before an audience of more than 1,000 supporters.”

‘How to get involved in Pa.’s pivotal redistricting process’: Spotlight PA reports on the “few ways to make sure your voice is heard” for “the drawing of new political maps.”

‘Pa. lawmaker calls his school choice bill a ‘game changer’ with its focus on students, not systems’: PennLive reports that state “Rep. Andrew Lewis, R-Dauphin County, has introduced multi-faceted legislation that would establish state-funded education savings accounts called Keystone Hope Scholarships that could be used to cover the cost of homeschooling or private school tuition.”

‘Business leaders, Pa. lawmaker urge U.S. House to pass $1 trillion plan to improve roads, bridges and more’: PennLive reports that “leaders from the business community and a state senator are urging the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the $1 trillion infrastructure plan when it returns to session next week.”

‘Pa. will hire 100 coronavirus contact tracers to replace 1,000. Experts say it’s not enough.’: Spotlight PA reports that “the Wolf administration will hire at least 100 contact tracers as it rebuilds its depleted team, a dramatic workforce reduction compared to earlier this year and a number well under what experts estimate Pennsylvania needs to contain the spread of COVID-19.”

‘Pa. auditor general looks to modernize his agency with help from Democratic candidate who sought his job’: PennLive reports that “Auditor General Timothy DeFoor has appointed longtime department employee Tracie Fountain to serve as the agency’s chief transformation officer to modernize its operation. The Harrisburg resident ran unsuccessfully last year for the Democratic position that DeFoor, a Republican, now holds.”

‘Rematch? Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse weighs write-in bid against Wanda Williams, May primary winner’: PennLive reports that “Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse is edging closer to asking Harrisburg voters for a second opinion on the 2021 mayor’s race.”

‘Republicans call for investigation into UPitt’s federally funded fetal tissue research’: Fox News reports that “at least eight Republican politicians, including three from Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation, are calling for an investigation into the University of Pittsburgh’s fetal tissue research.”

‘Democratic lawmaker on Biden blaming intel on Afghanistan collapse: ‘We deserve answers’ from administration’: Fox News reports that Rep. Susan Wild (D-Lehigh) “told “America’s Newsroom” on Thursday that the American people “deserve answers” from the Biden administration about what led to the collapse of Afghanistan and America’s “failure” to handle the matter.”

‘Pa. barbers, salons to get $20M in belated pandemic relief’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “about 1,200 Pennsylvania barber shops and salons across the commonwealth that applied for, but did not receive, state pandemic assistance last year are now eligible for $20 million in funding earmarked just for their industry, two Democratic lawmakers from Philadelphia announced Thursday.”

‘New state online tool aims to ID, address health inequities across Pa.’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “a new tool launched by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services can help providers and community organizations identify and address health inequities, state health experts say.”

City & State PA’s Biggest Winners & Losers This Week: City & State PA highlights the three winners and losers in Pennsylvania politics this week. 

‘Amtrak eyes stops in Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton in updated plan’: The Allentown Morning Call reports that “all three of the Lehigh Valley’s cities could find themselves back on track for rail service to New York City under an updated plan released Wednesday by Amtrak.”

‘‘Something we must do’: Pennsylvania Democrats voice support for federal infrastructure bill’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “in Pennsylvania, support for the bill has fallen along partisan lines. U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb, D-Mt. Lebanon, Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Forest Hills, and U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., have all expressed support for the legislation, arguing it will provide investment in the region to help shape its future. Some Republican leaders and candidates aren’t on board, expressing concern about the price tag and its impact on inflation.”

‘U.S. Sen. Bob Casey pitches infrastructure, services for the elderly and children’: The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that Sen. Bob Casey, “on the road in Pennsylvania during the August congressional break, on Thursday told Tribune-Review editors and reporters the bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill that already passed the Senate includes a big boost for highways and bridges as well as transit and broadband.”

‘‘Magic seats’ create new Philly judges who don’t even have to campaign. Here’s how it works.’: Philly Clout reports that “State Sen. John Sabatina, a Northeast Philadelphia Democrat, is said to be near the top of the list for candidates to be placed on the November ballot to replace judges who opt to not stand for retention.”

‘Pennsylvania prepares to help Afghan refugees resettle here after Taliban takeover’: The York Daily Record reports that “the crisis in Afghanistan will resonate in Pennsylvania in the days and weeks ahead, as families fleeing the Taliban-led government will take refuge in resettlement areas here.”

‘5 key takeaways from a new report on Philly’s antiviolence spending’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports on the “five key takeaways” on Philadelphia City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart’s report released on Thursday “ analyzing the money that Mayor Jim Kenney and City Council designated as antiviolence funding and categorizing the programs based on how quickly they’re likely to have an impact.”

‘Philadelphia mayor tries again to get Columbus statue taken down by appealing judge’s ruling’: KYW Newsradio reports that “the Kenney administration will continue to try to remove a statue of Christopher Columbus from a South Philadelphia park, despite a judge’s ruling this week that the move has no legal basis.

‘Coronado’s Mon Valley Mine in Forward Township gets unwelcome greeting at first public meeting’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “Coronado Coal’s plan to develop a large underground mine and above-ground coal processing and loading facilities in Forward Township was met with heavy community opposition Wednesday evening.”

‘Berks commissioners vote to transform residential center into all-female facility’: The Reading Eagle reports that “the Berks County commissioners voted Thursday to approve modifications to their existing contract with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement that would shift the Bern Township center from one that houses families seeking asylum to one that only houses migrant women.”

‘Congresswoman visits Colebrookdale Railroad, speaks about improving railyard through grant’: The Reading Eagle reports that “U.S. Rep. Madeleine Dean spoke about improving Colebrookdale Railroad’s railyard through a community project development grant during a visit Thursday to the railroad in Boyertown.”

‘Sikorsky helicopter plant near Coatesville is set to close’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “the plant was slated to close in 2019, but was spared after pressure from then President Donald Trump, U.S. Rep. Chrissy Houlahan, and others. But the reprieve appears to have been short-lived.”

‘Erie officials, with a $76M allocation, still working on a plan to spend COVID relief funds’: The Erie Times-News reports that “the City of Erie has yet to specify how it will spend $76 million in American Rescue Plan money, half of which is already in its coffers.”

‘State College mayor shares view on critical race theory and the community oversight board’: The Centre Daily Times reports that “State College mayor voices his views on critical race theory and its role in the future community oversight board during a borough council meeting on Monday, Aug. 16, 2021.”

‘State College mayor explains why he will not sign ordinance establishing ‘COB’ overseeing police’: The Centre Daily Times reports that “State College Mayor Ron Filippelli announced publicly Thursday that he does not intend to sign the ordinance establishing the Community Oversight Board — a civilian board overseeing local police — due to a disagreement over critical race theory, one of the required training elements for future board members.”

‘Westmoreland DA accused of favoritism toward the ‘rich and famous’’: The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that “the lawyer for a Derry man awaiting trial on drunken driving charges contends Westmoreland County District Attorney John Peck gave preferential treatment to a local celebrity and unfairly rejected a bid for his “blue collar” client to enter a jail diversionary program.”

‘Allentown to add more ADA ramps throughout city’: WFMZ reports that “some city streets in Allentown will become more accessible as Allentown City Council approved additional spending on Americans with Disability Act ramp locations.”

‘Republican nominee hopeful for 2022 governor race visits Williamsport’: The Williamsport Sun-Gazette reports that Jason Richey, a partner at Pittsburgh’s K&L Gates law firm who is seeking the Republican Party nomination for Governor in 2022, was campaigning in in Lycoming County on Thursday.

Jackson Endorses Parnell for Senate: Texas Congressman Ronny Jackson has endorsed Sean Parnell for U.S. Senate.  

Parnell Talks with Kirk: Sean Parnell, a combat veteran and former congressional candidate seeking the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate, joined the Charlie Kirk Show to talk about the ongoing situation in Afghanistan.  

 

Harrisburg & DC   
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. GOP lawmaker says the cause for a forensic election investigation is ‘weakened and diminished’ 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. barbers, salons to get $20M in belated pandemic relief 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: New state online tool aims to ID, address health inequities across Pa. 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Members of Pa.’s congressional delegation say they’re safe during Capitol Hill bomb threat 
AP: GOP senator’s plan to issue election subpoenas ‘stopped’ 
AP: Sikorsky helicopter plant in Pennsylvania to close 
Patriot News: Pa. lawmaker calls his school choice bill a ‘game changer’ with its focus on students, not systems 
Patriot News: Business leaders, Pa. lawmaker urge U.S. House to pass $1 trillion plan to improve roads, bridges and more 
Patriot News: Pa. auditor general looks to modernize his agency with help from Democratic candidate who sought his job 
Patriot News: Pa. faces ‘critical’ blood shortage as COVID-19 pandemic, worker shortage cut into donations 
Patriot News: Pa. sees biggest one-day COVID-19 case count in months
Spotlight PA: How to get involved in Pa.’s pivotal redistricting process 
Spotlight PA: Pa. will hire 100 coronavirus contact tracers to replace 1,000. Experts say it’s not enough. 
City & State PA: Doug Mastriano: ‘Our cause is weakened and diminished.’ 
City & State PA: This week’s biggest Winners & Losers 
USA Today: Here’s why state Sen. Doug Mastriano says Pa. election audit ‘stopped for the time being’
Inquirer: Sikorsky helicopter plant near Coatesville is set to close
LNP | LancasterOnline: Biden approval rating dips to 41% in Pa. as COVID-19 surges: F&M Poll
Reading Eagle: Over half of voters think Pa. headed in wrong direction, F&M poll finds
Fox News: Republicans call for investigation into UPitt’s federally funded fetal tissue research
Fox News: Democratic lawmaker on Biden blaming intel on Afghanistan collapse: ‘We deserve answers’ from administration
Fox News: Philadelphia mayor rejects calls to bring in National Guard to address crime wave: ‘Not respectful’
StateImpactPA: Proposed coal mine in Allegheny County hits roadblock at township meeting
York Daily Record: Pennsylvania prepares to help Afghan refugees resettle here after Taliban takeover
The Hill: Fracking linked to surface water quality for first time in new study
Times-Tribune: Poll shows voter COVID-19 fears rising with new surge
Philly Voice: Vaccines sharply reduced COVID-19 deaths in New Jersey, Pennsylvania
Pittsburgh Business Times: Pennsylvania says $20M in pandemic relief grants available to salons, hair care pros  
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pennsylvania: State Health Department Reports 3,451 New Cases, 22 Additional Deaths

 

Philadelphia 
Philly Clout: ‘Magic seats’ create new Philly judges who don’t even have to campaign. Here’s how it works.
Inquirer: 5 key takeaways from a new report on Philly’s antiviolence spending 
Inquirer: Philly will appeal a court order prohibiting the removal of the Columbus statue in Marconi Plaza
Inquirer: Philly city officials and social services cleared two homeless encampments along Kensington Avenue 
Inquirer: Three years. Two trials. No witness. Philly man acquitted of murder says his case shows a flawed system. 
WHYY Newsworks: Philadelphia to appeal decision to block removal of Columbus statue 
KYW Newsradio: Philadelphia mayor tries again to get Columbus statue taken down by appealing judge’s ruling
KYW Newsradio: Why Philadelphia teachers won’t have a vaccine mandate, at least not yet
KYW Newsradio: Delta variant leads to 12-fold increase in daily COVID-19 cases in Philadelphia since early July
Philadelphia Tribune: City doesn’t roll out new programs to protect students as violence stays on the rise 
Philadelphia Gay News: Tax forms show Philly Pride Presents exhausted funds, had no assets
Philadelphia Magazine: Expect a Rise in COVID Cases for the Next Month, CHOP Says
Philadelphia Business Journal: Three-quarters of Philadelphia-area colleges raised the cost of attendance during the pandemic, data shows

 

SEPA
Daily Local News: Sikorsky helicopter plant in Chester County to close
Inquirer: Sikorsky helicopter plant near Coatesville is set to close
Bucks Local News: Senator Santarsiero urges local schools to require masks
Delco Daily Times: Delco sets Narcan giveaway in Upper Darby

 

Pittsburgh 
Post-Gazette: ‘Something we must do’: Pennsylvania Democrats voice support for federal infrastructure bill 
Post-Gazette: Coronado’s Mon Valley Mine in Forward Township gets unwelcome greeting at first public meeting 
Post-Gazette: MAP: Which Pittsburgh-area school districts are requiring masks this year? 
Tribune Review: U.S. Sen. Bob Casey pitches infrastructure, services for the elderly and children 
Tribune Review: Former Sewickley mayor Brian Jeffe joins board of Tull Family Theater
WESA: Pittsburgh Public School Board Votes To Delay Start Of School Year

 

SWPA 
Altoona Mirror: Man told to avoid Gregory, staffers
Altoona Mirror: Amtran contemplates future of bus transport fleet
Altoona Mirror: County courts struggling to keep up
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Advocates press for end to ‘prison gerrymandering’
Tribune Review: Westmoreland DA accused of favoritism toward the ‘rich and famous’
Observer-Reporter: Vote to reconfigure county’s human services department delayed 
Observer-Reporter: County purchases more than $1.5M case management system for courthouse files 

 

NEPA
Times-Tribune: Masks required for some students in local school districts 
Times-Tribune: New NEPA case numbers underscore COVID-19’s resurgence
Citizens Voice: 72 new COVID-19 cases reported in Luzerne County
The Times Leader: Five Luzerne County fire companies receive $39K in grants 
The Times Leader: 72 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Luzerne County Thursday; 3,451 statewide 

 

South Central 
Patriot News: Rematch? Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse weighs write-in bid against Wanda Williams, May primary winner 
Carlisle Sentinel: Carlisle borough opens application window for outside agency funding 
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: 48 new COVID-19 cases for Cumberland County Thursday
York Daily Record: Are face masks required on school buses? That’s debatable, some York County districts say. 
York Dispatch: York County officials stand by prison contractor amid misconduct allegations
LNP | LancasterOnline: Columbia Borough students, staff must mask up when school begins Aug. 24: board approves measure 8-1

 

Lehigh Valley      
Morning Call: Amtrak eyes stops in Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton in updated plan
Morning Call: Pennsylvania, Lehigh Valley deaths from imported fentanyl soar: ‘Infinitely more deadly than we have ever seen’
Morning Call: Safe in Allentown, an Afghan refugee family is desperate to help loved ones left behind escape the Taliban’s retribution
Morning Call: Pennsylvania coronavirus update: 3,451 additional cases is highest total since April
WFMZ: Amtrak proposal includes passenger rail service linking Lehigh Valley, New York City 
WFMZ: Rep. Dean rides Colebrookdale rails, touts $1.3M grant 
WFMZ: South Whitehall completes financial audits for first time in 10 years 
WFMZ: Allentown to add more ADA ramps throughout city 
Express Times: Amtrak promoting proposed Lehigh Valley-NYC passenger rail to commuters, students and tourists
Express Times: Renters, landlords can get help to avoid eviction, Pa. official says in Lehigh Valley visit 
Express Times: 22 Lehigh County Jail inmates sue over lockdowns, COVID infections 
Reading Eagle: Berks commissioners vote to transform residential center into all-female facility
Reading Eagle: Congresswoman visits Colebrookdale Railroad, speaks about improving railyard through grant
Reading Eagle: Declining economic mobility could be a problem for Berks County
Reading Eagle: Pennsylvania COVID cases soar, breaking delta surge record by more than 1,000 

 

North by Northwest
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Republican nominee hopeful for 2022 governor race visits Williamsport
Erie Times-News: Erie officials, with a $76M allocation, still working on a plan to spend COVID relief funds 
Erie Times-News: Dahlkemper: Face masking mandate ‘not off the table at all’
Erie Times-News: Erie’s Central City residents tout neighborhood improvements while still seeking city help
Centre Daily Times: State College mayor shares view on critical race theory and the community oversight board
Centre Daily Times: State College mayor explains why he will not sign ordinance establishing ‘COB’ overseeing police
Centre Daily Times: Centre Region’s COG ‘strongly’ encourages COVID-19 vaccine requirement for Penn State. Here’s why

 

Opinion  
Kate Klunk and Dan Frankel: Legislators don’t have to be moderate to work together
Rich Askey: Follow CDC mask-wearing guidance in Pa. schools
John Baer: The Taliban’s Afghanistan takeover won’t help America’s ‘seven-month itch’ with Joe Biden 
Will Bunch: Philly’s Vietnam success story shows why Pa. must lead today in welcoming Afghan refugees 
Justin Davis, Matt Mills and Nicholas Burpoe: Clean energy promises great opportunity for Pennsylvanians
John L. Micek: In a hiring crisis, Pa. nursing homes push back against Biden’s vaccine mandate | Friday Coffee 
John L. Micek: What COVID windfall? States have been slow to spend stimulus cash, report | Thursday Morning Coffee
Dom Giordano: A CRT Litmus Test For Parents
Inquirer: Should the Columbus statue leave Marconi Plaza? | Pro/Con
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. has made strides, but Wolf’s successor must continue criminal justice reform | Capital-Star Letters
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: US veterans served their country courageously in Afghanistan. That the longest war ended so chaotically is not their doing.
Helen Ubiñas: ‘Look at all the hurt’ as Philadelphia’s homicides climb and more children are shot and killed 
Quinn O’Callaghan: Memorialize COVID with a holiday, so that we never forget the millions who died 
Edwin J. Kay: Why a bike lane on Broad Street in Bethlehem would be dangerous
Trudy Rubin: President Biden, get our Afghan allies on evacuation planes 
Bruce Ledewitz: DOJ’s refusal to defend Mo Brooks was wrong; prosecuting Trump would be worse
Barbara Wendeborn Brandom, MD: Health risks from fracking gas have been ignored too long
Deb George: Immigrants deserve a pathway to citizenship
Paul R. Levy: Believe in Walnut Street’s Future

August 20th, 2021 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Playbook, Top Stories | 1 Comment

One thought on “August 20th Playbook”

  1. Bono says:

    Congressman Dr Ronny Jackson of Texas who gave out
    opioids like candy as Trump’s White House Doc and was frequently inebriated endorses Sean Parnell. Wonder how many votes this will yield for Parnell. Wha a joke!

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