March 11th Playbook

A former state Rep announces his candidacy for the special election in Senate District 48, while the White House announces that President Joe Biden will travel to Delaware County next week. Here is the Playbook. 

Biden To Visit Delco on Tuesday: According to a release from the White House Press Office, President Joe Biden will visit Delaware County on Tuesday, March 16.

SD48: Krebs Launches Bid for Special Election As An Independent: The former state Rep. stressed the importance of restoring civility in politics and being an elected official that will solve problems and address the issues that matter most to the citizens in the 48th District.

Papenfuse to Face Four Primary Challengers: ABC27 reports that City Council President Wanda Williams, businessman David Shankweiler, former councilman Otto Banks, and city resident Kevyn Knox have filed to run in the Democratic primary against incumbent Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse. Tim Rowbottom is the lone GOP candidate that has filed to run in the race for Harrisburg mayor. 

O’Connell To Face Four Primary Challengers: According to the Allentown Morning Call, City Councilwoman Ce-Ce Gerlach, Councilman Julio Guridy, Stevie Jones, a Kutztown University graduate and machine operator at Keystone Food Products, and Matt Tuerk, a former official with both the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp. and the Allentown Economic Development Corp., have filed to run in the Democratic primary against incumbent Allentown Mayor Ray O’Connell, while Tim Ramos, Vice President of the Lehigh County Republican Party, is the lone GOP candidate to file for the race. 

Three Candidates To Run For Bethlehem Mayor: City Council member J. William Reynolds and former city Administrator Dana Grub have both filed as Democrats for the race for mayor of Bethlehem, while former Lehigh County Administrator John Kachmar is the lone Republican candidate to file for the race, according to the Allentown Morning Call.  

Janakovic Faces Primary Challenger for Johnstown Mayor: The Johnstown Tribune-Democrat reports that Jeff Hammer, who works for Transparent Energy, is challenging incumbent Johnstown Mayor Frank Janakovic for the Democratic Party nomination. John DeBartola, a social worker and activist in the LGBTQ community, is the lone GOP candidate to file in the Johnstown mayoral race.  

Thompson Announces GOP Staff for House Agriculture Committee: First reported by Politico, Rep. G.T. Thompson (R-Centre), who serves as the GOP leader on the House Agriculture Committee, announced the Republican staff for the 117th Congress. John Busovsky, who served in Thompson’s personal office as Legislative Director, joins the Committee as Professional Staff and will handle the conservation and forestry portfolios. Taylor McCarty, who previously served as Communications Director in Thompson’s personal office, joins the Committee as Director of Communications. Erin Wilson, who previously served as Legislative Director for Rep. Fred Keller (R-Snyder), will serve as the Director of Member Services and Coalitions for the Committee. 

Harrisburg & DC   
AP: Lawmaker calls for halt to PennDOT plan to toll nine bridges
Patriot News: Surge in hate crimes against Asian Americans is the topic of an online town hall Thursday
Patriot News: Pa. notches two days of 110,000 COVID-19 vaccinations as supply grows 
Patriot News: Groups urge Gov. Wolf to open private events and weddings at 50% capacity 
Patriot News: Gov. Wolf indicates Pa. restaurants and bars can celebrate St. Patrick’s Day
Patriot News: Still seeking unemployment compensation? Pa. official vows all emails and calls will be answered
Patriot News: Pa. COVID-19 update: 3.1 million vaccinated, hospitalizations continue to fall
Inquirer: Biden is coming to Pennsylvania next week after signing the $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill
Inquirer: Pa. seniors are ‘at their wit’s ends’ trying to get coronavirus vaccines
Inquirer: Pennsylvania’s unemployment office is hiring 500 people to answer busy phone lines
Inquirer: Here’s what Pennsylvania and New Jersey are getting out of the $1.9 trillion stimulus package 
Inquirer: How Pa. and N.J. could spend billions in relief funds | Morning Newsletter
Inquirer: Gov. Wolf says suburban counties weren’t shortchanged on vaccine, adding to state’s murky messages 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Eight Democrats, six Republicans file to run for Pa.’s state appellate court bench
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. House lawmakers Mullins, Flynn face off to run for Scranton state Senate seat 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: U.S. House sends Biden giant $1.9T COVID relief package; Pa. lawmakers break on party lines 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Poll: Half of registered Pa. Republicans say they approve of Jan. 6 votes against Electoral College
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: A different kind of quarantine: state officials track spotted lanternflies in 8 more counties 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: ‘Who writes this?’: Your Morning Coffee questions, answered | Thursday Morning Coffee
Morning Call: Pennsylvania starts giving COVID-19 vaccine to teachers as lawmakers blast Wolf administration absence from vaccine hearing
Morning Call: Pennsylvania unemployment office adds hundreds of call center staff to handle ongoing surge in calls
The Times Leader: 4 of Casey’s top issues included in $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan
Post-Gazette: Leaning on tax credits, Democrats hope to stem child poverty by delivering income stream to families
Post-Gazette: Pa. is hiring 500 staffers to answer unemployment calls. Activists want that number to double
Post-Gazette: State health department addresses concerns about vaccine allocation
Post-Gazette: Abandoned mine reclamation extension introduced 
Poynter: Is local journalism dying? Look closer.
PLSReporter: Pennsylvania to receive $13.7B in state, local aid from American Rescue Plan 
Tribune Review: New fed relief plan saves aid for 925,000 Pennsylvanians, state says
StateImpactPA: Chesapeake Energy to pay $5.3 million in settlement with AG 
StateImpactPA: Note to nesting songbirds: Study indicates the quiet spot — away from a natural gas compressor — might be better 
The Hill: Pro-Biden group launches two-year ad campaign to promote White House agenda
CNN: Memo from top Biden adviser outlines White House messaging blitz on Covid-19 relief plan

KYW Newsradio: ‘Answer the phone!’ becomes rallying cry of Pennsylvania’s unemployed
KYW Newsradio: Housing advocate’s tiny home bid rejected for city’s pilot project
KYW Newsradio: Philadelphia expands vaccine eligibility to people 65 and older
KYW Newsradio: No jury trials for Philly public defenders until key employees are vaccinated for COVID-19
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. coronavirus update: Philly adds those age 65 and over to Phase 1B
Inquirer: The new coronavirus relief bill promises big financial help for parents in the Philly region
Inquirer: City Council seeks to bolster arts funding, bypassing the Philadelphia Cultural Fund
Inquirer: Philly is expanding vaccine eligibility to 65 and older as it scrambles to get shots into arms
Inquirer: Former employee of city Violence Prevention Office pleads guilty to gun charge 
Philadelphia Business Journal: Philadelphia expands vaccine eligibility to all people 65 and older 

Bucks Local News: Bucks County Congressman introduces bipartisan Violence Against Women reauthorization act 
Bucks Local News: Here’s a break down of the American Rescue Plan’s effects on Pennsylvanians
Bucks County Courier Times: Santarsiero offers vaccine registration help 
Inquirer: Gov. Wolf says suburban counties weren’t shortchanged on vaccine, adding to state’s murky messages
Inquirer: George Heckler, son of former Hatfield mayor, pleads guilty to $20 million securities fraud
Daily Local News: Locals grateful for incoming stimulus funds as pandemic hits one-year anniversary mark
Daily Local News: West Chester gets new public works director
Delaware Valley Journal: ‘People Are Looking For Answers:’ DelVal Counties Decry State’s Vaccine Distribution
Delco Daily Times: Censure effort over Twitter dispute in Radnor fails to gain needed votes  

Tribune Review: Allegheny County joins Pittsburgh in passing law mandating paid sick leave
Tribune Review: Peduto: Federal relief package will avoid city layoffs, replenish reserve fund
Tribune Review: Peduto to face 3 challengers in Pittsburgh mayoral race, Will Parker out
Tribune Review: McKeesport City Council, citizens reach agreement on public meetings
Tribune Review: Allegheny officials ask residents to refrain from large St. Patrick’s Day gatherings
WESA: Peduto Draws 3 Challengers, Petitions Suggest Crowded Ballot For Judgeships And City Schools 
WESA: City Council’s Eviction Ban Under Litigation Days After It Passed
WESA: ‘Answer The Phone!’ Unemployed Rally For More State Assistance
WESA: Urban Redevelopment Authority Set To Launch Program To Support Homeownership in Pittsburgh
Post-Gazette: U.S. House approves $1.9 trillion COVID-19 rescue plan 
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh and URA announce $22 million to support homeownership, new Land Bank leadership  
Post-Gazette: McKeesport City Council agrees to hold virtual meetings after suit over accessibility
Post-Gazette: Braddock council opts out of Mon Valley police regionalization plan 
Post-Gazette: COVID-19 Update: More than 1 million people fully vaccinated in Pa.
KDKA: House Signs Off On President Biden’s COVID Relief Bill, Meaning More Money For Western Pa.
KDKA: ‘A Lot Of Opportunity Here:’ Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg Supports Infrastructure Bill
KDKA: McKeesport City Council Will Live Stream Meetings
KDKA: Braddock Council Votes To Leave Police Regionalization Plan
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pennsylvania: Leaders Say There Are Still 2 Million People Remaining In Phase 1A
KDKA: COVID-19 In Allegheny County: Leaders Warn Against St. Patrick’s Day Spike In Cases
KDKA: Pittsburgh Public Schools Asks Public To Decide 1st Day Of School For 2021-2022 Year
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Reports 209 More Coronavirus Cases, No Additional Deaths
City Paper: PlumePGH tracks the source of air pollution in Pittsburgh, and how it gets to your home
Pittsburgh Business Times: Here’s what employers should do now to prepare for the county’s new paid sick leave law 
Pittsburgh Business Times: Next steps for Allegheny County paid sick leave ordinance
Pittsburgh Business Times: Allegheny County Council passes paid sick leave ordinance

Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: ‘Hope on the horizon’: Casey details relief bill; local leaders say they work together to ‘put the virus behind us’
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Candidates submit petitions to run for mayor, City Council
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Sheriff race tops Cambria County primary slate
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: One million in state now fully covered by COVID-19 vaccine
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Highlands Health plans another vaccination clinic; region marks second day with one new COVID-19 death
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Somerset offers help to those ‘hurting’ from pandemic
Beaver County Times: What’s the COVID-19 relief package mean for Pa.?
Post-Gazette: State health department addresses concerns about vaccine allocation 
Tribune Review: Primary ballots set for Westmoreland County races
Altoona Mirror: Blair gets aid for rent, utilities
Altoona Mirror: Duncansville Mayor: Council ‘not special’
Altoona Mirror: City to change pension firm
Altoona Mirror: Right-to-Know law in spotlight
Altoona Mirror: When to expect payments
Observer-Reporter: Pa. National Guard to arrive in Washington Co. for teacher COVID-19 vaccine clinic
Observer-Reporter: Toothman claims ‘health issues’ could impede him from testifying at misconduct trial
Observer-Reporter: North Franklin officials reveal plans for new municipal building
Observer-Reporter: COVID-19 deaths reported in Washington, Fayette counties

Citizens Voice: County council declares DA position vacant 
Citizens Voice: Exeter council removes treasurer’s duties from Radle to avoid potential conflict 
Citizens Voice: 55 new COVID-19 cases recorded in county on Wednesday
Times-Tribune: O’Malley tries political comeback as candidates file to run for elected offices 
Times-Tribune: Lackawanna County accepting applications for rent,utility relief 
Times-Tribune: Lackawanna County accepting applications for mortgage assistance 
Times-Tribune: Demand for COVID-19 vaccines still far outstrips supply 
The Times Leader: Salavantis: County council has forced litigation by declaring her DA seat vacant
The Times Leader: Rental assistance now available for eligible Luzerne County renters   
The Times Leader: Plymouth councilman unsuccessfully attempts to launch vote on nuisance bar petition 
The Times Leader: 55 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Luzerne County Wednesday; 2 more deaths

South Central 
ABC27: 2021 Harrisburg mayoral race deemed “most interesting” race by experts 
LNP | LancasterOnline: Wolf visits Lancaster’s mass vaccination site to boast its transportation plan, but transit workers are still left out of Phase 1A
LNP | LancasterOnline: Watch: Gov. Wolf visits COVID-19 mass vaccination site at Park City Center to talk transportation
LNP | LancasterOnline: Manheim Township calls on Lancaster County commissioners to create a health department
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster City Council adopts resolution condemning conversion therapy in minors
Patriot News: Surge in hate crimes against Asian Americans is the topic of an online town hall Thursday 
Patriot News: ‘Can we talk about race?’: Carlisle considering commission to study sources of racial problems 
Patriot News: Cumberland County launches emergency assistance program to financially help renters affected by COVID-19 
York Daily Record: Are York County lawyers’ ratings of judge candidates useful to you? Survey seeks input
York Dispatch: York NAACP to discuss city-wide surveillance proposal next week
York Dispatch: In York County, rent and utility help is on the way
York Dispatch: York County reports 53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: 32 new cases of COVID-19 for Cumberland County Wednesday

Lehigh Valley      
Express Times: Here are the candidates in Lehigh Valley contested 2021 primary races 
Express Times: Pa. lawmaker calls for halt to PennDOT plan to toll 9 bridges 
Express Times: COVID in Pa.: More than 1 million fully vaccinated; case rates hold steady; how Lehigh Valley veterans can get COVID vaccines | Pa. COVID vaccine map (03/10/2021)
Morning Call: ‘We didn’t have the option of going small’: Susan Wild champions $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill passed without GOP support
Morning Call: Pennsylvania House committee members blast Department of Health for skipping COVID-19 vaccine hearing
Morning Call: Bethlehem City Council race: five Democrats vying for four seats 
Reading Eagle: Berks County’s congressional delegation reacts to passage of $1.9 trillion relief package 
Reading Eagle: State Sen. Judy Schwank joins fight to save historic Kemp Family Burial Ground from warehouse 
Reading Eagle: Nearly $28,000 in grants will improve safety at 3 Berks County organizations
Reading Eagle: Berks County gets biggest COVID vaccine shipment yet
WFMZ: City of Easton says amount of stimulus funds it will get from the federal government is too low 
WFMZ: Local lawmakers weigh in after Congress passes $1.9T COVID-19 relief bill
WFMZ: $1.9T stimulus includes new child tax credit with monthly payments. Some Democrats already talking about making it permanent 
WFMZ: Lawmaker calls for halt to PennDOT plan to toll 9 bridges
WFMZ: Municipalities overcome challenges to maintain NBRPD

North by Northwest
Patriot News: Bradford County DA claims misconduct, seeks dismissal of sexual assault charges
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Grants available for Lycoming County businesses
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Borough seeks grants for public safety building
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Commissioners put flood wall on hold for now
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Jersey Shore applies for grants to support transportation, tourism
Erie Times-News: New COVID relief bill gives Erie School District $70M

J.J. Abbott: Pennsylvanians are suffering. Biden’s coronavirus relief plan will help. 
Paul Muschick: What does Toomey’s censure prove? That Lehigh County Republicans are stuck in past
Paul Muschick: It just has to stop.’ Listen to plea from mother of Whitehall Walmart shooting victim in wake of Lehigh Valley gun violence
Mark Holman: Bring back earmarks 
Kelly Flanigan: How Pa. can prevent a power crisis like the one that knocked out Texas 
Paul R. Levy: Raising property tax is better than raising other taxes 
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Pandemic has been tough on restaurants and bars, but science is behind the restrictions they’ve faced. Relief and hopefully a better St. Patrick’s are on tap. 
Inquirer Editorial Board: Time for a more people-centered Ben Franklin Parkway
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: When Harry met Oprah
York Dispatch Editorial Board: Heed grand jury’s report
York Dispatch Editorial Board: NASCAR seems to be turning corner on its checkered racial past
Margie Zelenak: Rescue Plan funding is desperately needed to ease strain on senior care industry
Charlie O’Neill: The voter registration numbers Democrats don’t want to talk about
Joyce M. Davis: Educators explain how schools can reopen safely in today’s Facebook Live Editorial Board meeting
Anne Gemmell: Future-Proofing Work: Can The Future Still Be Female? 
Elaine Maimon, PhD: The Answer To Our Vaccine Debacle 
Laura Burke: This March 24 is Red Cross Giving Day. Help your neighbors in need
Dr. Michael T. Flaherty and Dr. Kenneth S. Thompson: Here are some coping strategies for these times
John A. Tures: Curtailing absentee voting could end up crushing conservatives in future elections 
Gene Therapy: Hair-raising advice from the CDC

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