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Eye Opener – June 13, 2012

Eye Opener

REPUBLICANS WEIGHING NEW CORBETT BUDGET PITCH

According to an article in the Morning Call, efforts to reach an agreement on how much Pennsylvania should spend in fiscal 2012-13 inched along Tuesday, with legislative Republicans leaving a negotiating session loaded down with a Corbett administration budget proposal that would spend about $27.4 billion starting July 1. Neither side would discuss specifics, but Gov. Tom Corbett did lay “out in more detail what the possibilities were that he would support, different levels of spending, different spending lines, Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi, R-Delaware, said as he left a morning session. “I think we get a greater level of clarity at each meeting,” Pileggi continued. “We’re going to take the information the governor provided to us today and prepare a more formal, comprehensive response for a meeting scheduled for [Wednesday] at 2 p.m.” Click here to read the Morning Call article.

CORBETT’S POPULARITY DROPS IN NEW POLL

According to an article in the Morning Call, Gov. Tom Corbett’s approval ratings have hit the lowest point in his administration, largely due to plummeting ratings among women, a new poll has found. Forty-seven percent of voters disapprove of the way Corbett’s handling his job as governor, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday. Thirty-six percent of the poll’s 997 respondents approve. The number is down from last September’s 50 percent peak approval mark among a similar voting sample of registered voters. Click here to read the Morning Call article.

HARRISBURG COUNCIL MAY BE FORCED TO ADOPT RECOVERY PLAN

According to an article in the Patriot News, Tuesday was supposed to be an introduction between receiver William Lynch and Harrisburg City Council at its regularly scheduled meeting.  Instead, the meeting turned into a terse confrontation as council members blasted Lynch for a letter that they received the day before, in which he delivered to them an ultimatum: Move to enact parts of the city’s financial recovery plan by Monday or Lynch would seek a court order forcing the the council’s compliance.  Neither side blinked — and Harrisburg, it appears, is once again headed to court. Click here to read the Patriot News article.

KAMPF INTRODUCES PENSION REFORM BILLS

Rep. Warren Kampf (R-Chester) held a press conference yesterday to introduce two bills that would require future state and school district employees to enroll in an employee-directed defined contribution plan and allow current employees to voluntarily enroll in the reform program. HB 2453 addresses state employees, while HB 2454 addresses school district employees. “For all state future employees, except the State Police, and for all future school district employees these bill swill create a mandatory defined contribution plan which is like a 401K plan in the private sector,” Rep. Kampf stated. “It will require the employer, the state and the school district, an amount equal to four percent of the employee’s annual salary and the employee will be required to contribute a minimum of four percent. These funds will go into individual accounts that will be controlled by the employee. For existing employees, given the case law that benefits cannot be changed, there is a option to be exercised by the employee in the system and that is to freeze their benefit in place and in exchange go into the defined contribution and receive seven percent from the employer and they the employee would be required to contribute four percent.” Check out the Around the Capital section of the PLS Capitol Toolbox to read the full story.


Upcoming Meetings

House Urban Affairs
9:30 a.m., Room B31 Main Capitol
To consider: HB 1844 Tobash Amends Housing Authorities Law SB 887 Browne Amends Landlord & Tenant Act re abandoned prop SB 276 Argall Amends Downtown Location Law re DGS powers SB 1321 Earll Amends Municipalities Fin. Recovery Act

House Veterans Affairs & Emergency Prepared.
9:30 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building
Informational meeting with PEMA Director Glenn Cannon to provide a briefing on the current status of the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) buyouts of homes that were damaged in Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee

Senate Communications and Technology
9:30 a.m., Room 8E-A, East Wing
To consider: SB 1345 Folmer Act re wireless communications facilities

Senate Urban Affairs and Housing
9:30 a.m., Room 461 Main Capitol
To consider: HB 1767 Freeman Amends Manufactured Home Community Rights Act

9:45 a.m., Capitol Steps PennEnvironment, Reps. Adolph & Harper, PLTA & PA Sierra Club on concerns with the Keystone Fund

House Professional Licensure
10:00 a.m., Room 60, East Wing
To consider the following Regulations:   Reg. 16A-4930 (Proposed)   Reg. 16A-5321 (Proposed)   Reg. 16A-54 (Final)   Reg. 16A-5122 (Final)   Reg. 16A-5428 (Final Omit)

10:30 a.m., Main Rotunda Rep. Pashinski – PSEA: Save Our Schools Rally

House Appropriations
Off the Floor, Room 140 Main Capitol
Agenda to be announced

Senate Labor and Industry
Off the Floor, Rules Committee Conference Room
To consider: HB 1539 Saylor Amends Workforce Dev. Act re Keystone Works HB 1820 Delozier Amends Minimum Wage Act re exemptions


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