Gov. Corbett’s full speech on proposed budget

Here’s Gov. Tom Corbett’s full budget speech. (Live coverage here.) His office notes that it is “as prepared for delivery,” so there may be slight differences from what he actually says this morning.

Introduction

Speaker Smith, President Pro Tempore Scarnati, Republican Leaders Pileggi and Turzai, Democrat Leaders Costa and Dermody, Lieutenant Governor Cawley, members of the General Assembly, the best First Lady in the country Susan Corbett, members of my cabinet, friends and fellow citizens:

Thank you all very much.

This is the fourth time I have come here to present a budget to the general assembly, and it’s always a privilege. Today, I’ve brought along some special guests.

They represent the men and women of this state who wear the uniform of our country, and the many who have served in theaters of war. This past year, the 104th Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, a unit of the Pennsylvania National Guard, completed a deployment in Afghanistan. Our guests are among the brave and highly skilled Apache helicopter pilots who carried out that mission. We are proud to have the Apaches based in Pennsylvania.

Recently though, the Army announced a plan to take many of these helicopters with their pilots out of Pennsylvania.

Along with Adjutant General Wesley Craig, I am going to fight to keep them here.

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State audit: Dallastown schools paid ex-superintendent too much in car allowance

Dallastown Area School District is quoted in a state audit saying it will try to get back $8,324 in vehicle expenses that were more than what the former superintendent’s contract called for.

Neither the audit nor the district names former Supt. Stewart Weinberg, instead referring to the “former superintendent.” The audit covers the period from October 15, 2010 through July 24, 2012. Weinberg was superintendent from July 2004 to February 9, 2012. The audit examined auto expenses for those dates.

Auditor General Eugene DePasquale’s report on Dallastown found that it “complied, in all significant respects” with requirements, except for two things:

  • That it paid more than it should have for car repairs and maintenance, rental equipment, gas and car insurance between July 2004 and February 2012. The contract allowed for $500 per month, or $42,000 over that span. The school paid $50,324, the audit found.
  • That the district “may have reported” $3,678 in ineligible retirement wages for its former superintendent in the 2011-2012 school year to the state school employees’ retirement system.

The audit quotes Dallastown’s response as agreeing that it overpaid the auto expenses, and that it will “review available options” to see if it can get the money back. The district also says that no current district employee has a car allowance.

The audit quotes Dallastown as agreeing it may have reported ineligible retirement expenses and will wait to hear from the Public School Employees’ Retirement System as to how that is to be handled.

Weinberg could not be reached for comment.

DePasquale, a former state representative from York County, said it’s a longstanding policy of the department to not identify individuals by name in audits.

He said that’s done so the focus can be on fixing the problem.

Weinberg resigned in February 2012 at the board’s request. Some said he made Dallastown schools better, but that he was controversial. Under his separation agreement, he was to receive close to $140,000 from the district. The district later amended part of that agreement — paying him $25,000 cash instead of paying health benefits through mid-2014 — in a move that was expected to save the district about $6,000.

Here’s the complete audit report:

 

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911 calls during Newtown school shooting released


Audio of Newtown 911 calls to be released today

A sign hangs near a cemetery in Newtown, Conn. on Dec. 18, 2012. (John Moore/Getty Images)Seven landline phone calls from inside Sandy Hook Elementary School to Newtown police are expected to be released after 2 p.m. today. "We all understand why some people have strong feelings about the release of these tapes. This was a horrible crime," said Kathleen Carroll, AP executive editor and senior vice president. The Associated Press has been asking for the release of the tapes for …

View “Audio of Newtown 911 calls to be released today” on Spundge

–Karen Workman, Digital First Media

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How much money is York County spending, and on what?

Here’s York County’s line-by-line proposed budget for 2014. What do you see of interest? (Here’s the developing story on the budget.)
To increase the size of the document, use the zoom tool. To see a full-sized version of the document, click the four arrows at bottom left.


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PA state universities continue fight against more transparency « Watchdog.org

An open government update brought to you by Record Tracker via Evernote.

For more open records resources, visit:

YDR Datacenter

My open records resources folder in Evernote.

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York County homicide map among Datacenter resources

A reminder that we have a bunch of searchable data at our Datacenter page, including an interactive map of homicides in York County beginning in 2007.

The map has been updated with today’s homicide in York. If you see any information on the map that is out of date, let me know.

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State board details reasons to revoke New Hope Academy’s charter

Read the Pennsylvania State Charter School Appeals Board’s written decision in which it denied New Hope Academy’s appeal of the city school district board’s decision to revoke its charter.

The decision rules point-by-point on the city board’s reasons for revoking the charter and on New Hope’s counter-arguments.

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Open records office: Dover school board member’s personal emails subject to review

Here’s news, via Angie Mason’s Cram Session blog, about an Open Records Office decision on an appeal involving a Dover school board member’s personal emails.

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Ohio high school journalists push for records, break a story | Poynter.

Perseverance! And an act of journalism results. Good work by the kids in Ohio.

This was an open government update brought to you by Record Tracker via Evernote.

For more open records resources, visit:

YDR Datacenter

My open records resources folder in Evernote.

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Pa. Office of Open Records to hold free Right to Know workshop

The state’s Office of Open Records, will hold a free workshop on Pennsylvania’s Right to Know Law and the Sunshine Act on Oct. 23 from 10 a.m. to noon, state Sen. Rob Teplitz, D-Susquehanna Township, Dauphin County, said in a news release.

Admission is free but seating is limited, according to the release. Advanced registration by Friday is preferred. To download a registration form, visit the Office of Open Records website.

For more information about the workshop, call 717-346-9903.

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