Check out a map of Pennsylvania Senate districts

We’ve got some fun map plans for the state’s General Assembly. For now, here is a look at Pennsylvania Senate districts, broken down by party affiliation.

Posted in 2015-16 legislative session | Leave a comment

Saylor wants “Ronald Reagan Day” in Pennsylvania

Rep. Stan Saylor

Rep. Stan Saylor, R-Windsor Township. YDR file photo.

State Rep. Stan Saylor, R-Windsor Township, wants Feb. 6, 2015 to be “Ronald Reagan Day” in Pennsylvania.

ALSO OF INTEREST: Pa. Fact Finder: Would York residents get tax cut if charters are approved?

That would have been Reagan’s 104th birthday, according to his biography.

State Rep. Seth Grove, R-Dover Township is one of 48 co-sponsors for House Resolution No. 53.

“WHEREAS, President Ronald Wilson Reagan, a man of humble background, worked throughout his life ensuring freedom for all and advancing the public good as an entertainer, union leader, corporate spokesman, Governor of California and President of the United States,” the bill states toward the beginning of its 11 similarly glowing paragraphs.

“… [B]e it RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives recognize February 6, 2015, as ‘Ronald Reagan Day’ in Pennsylvania,” the resolution ends.

ALSO OF INTEREST: Quotes from local political figures following the inauguration of Gov. Tom Wolf

The reason for the resolution is unknown, but I placed a call and am waiting for a response.

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Gov. Tom Wolf says passing non-discrimination legislation is ‘right’ and ‘smart’

On Wednesday, Gov. Tom Wolf joined a group of lawmakers and advocates for passing legislation that would ban housing and employment discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

“Whether you’re a Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal, this stuff is smart,” Wolf said at a networking breakfast hosted by Equality Pennsylvania. “If you want a strong economy, you want strong businesses, fairness actually works.”

Legislation to ban that employment and housing discrimination was introduced last session. But Senate Bill 300 and House Bill 300 didn’t receive any committee votes.

Wolf fielded questions from reporters after his brief remarks. Here are some highlights from that:

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Gov. Tom Wolf plans to fill vacancies on state Supreme Court

Gov. Tom Wolf said he plans to nominate two people to fill vacancies on the state Supreme Court, but he hasn’t decided who they will be.

Wolf made the comments to reporters Wednesday in the Capitol.

Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa, D-Allegheny County, said Senate Democrats want people who are “intelligent, thoughtful, as nonpartisan as possible” and who would “help to bring back respect to the court that the court has lost over the course of the past couple years.”

Costa said he expects you won’t see two Republicans get the jobs or two Democrats get them either. Costa declined to say people who have asked to be considered.

He said he hopes to confirm people in February.

“Otherwise, it gets to a point where it doesn’t become efficient, or it doesn’t make sense to do them,” Costa said.

We’ll have updates later.


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Duane Hull, a former elected official in the Dover area, to run for York County commissioner

Duane Hull (Submitted)

Duane Hull (Submitted)

Duane Hull, a former Dover Borough councilman and township supervisor, announced Tuesday that he is running for York County Commissioner.

Hull, 59, served on the Dover Borough Council for seven years. In 1998, he became a member of the Dover Township zoning hearing board and was then appointed to the board of supervisors for a two-year term. He was re-elected for another six years.

A lifelong resident of York County, Hull said he brings a “unique knowledge set” to the county commissioner position, a news release states.

“My background provides me with the experience to effectively serve the residents of the county,” Hull said in a statement.

Hull, a former president of the Dover Lions Club, also has volunteered with the Dover Area Ambulance for eight years as an EMT, a release states.

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Gov. Tom Wolf meets with families, supporters of medical marijuana legalization

Supporters of medical marijuana legalization gathered in the state Capitol to make their case. Here are some highlights.

In the audio clip below, state Sens. Mike Folmer and Daylin Leach talked about obstacles they encountered last session and the odds of passing the legislation this session. Folmer talks first.

Some parents who want medical marijuana to treat their kids’ illnesses then met briefly with Gov. Tom Wolf, who supports medical marijuana.

Wolf noted that he lives in Folmer’s district.

Then Wolf talked to parents.

“I understand. I get it,” Wolf told one mother.

Want to know more about the issue? Follow Evening Sun reporter Mark Walters who has written a lot about it.

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Susan Byrnes to run for York County commissioner

Susan Byrnes

Susan Byrnes (Submitted)

Susan Byrnes, a native of York County who founded the health education center that bears her name, plans to announce her candidacy for York County Commissioner this week, according to a news release.

The announcement will take place at 2 p.m. Thursday at Veterans Memorial Gold Star Healing & Peace Garden, 1000 Vander Ave. in York.

Speakers at this event will include York Countians for Susan Byrnes Campaign Chair, state Rep. Stan Saylor, R-Windsor Township, and Byrnes, the news release states.

Byrnes, a registered nurse decided in 1988 to devote her life to the prevention of premature deaths through unhealthy lifestyle choices, according to the center’s website.

In 1995, after years of planning and preparation, the Susan P. Byrnes Health Education Center opened, and today has grown into a 20,000 square foot home with five teaching theaters and more than 50 specialized educational offerings that include regional outreach programs, according to the center’s website. Children throughout the United States and from more than 165 countries around the world now utilize the center’s health educational tools online, the website states.

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Mayor Kim Bracey says proposed constitutional change for charities could mean less money for York

York Mayor Kim Bracey said she is concerned that a proposed change to the state constitution, which would give the General Assembly the authority to say what qualifies as a purely public charity, could mean less revenue for the city.

She has said that if the current 37 percent of tax-exempt real estate in York paid taxes, then the city would receive about $12 million more a year.

“We’re already behind the eight ball,” Bracey said.

She said she’s worried that there could be more tax-exempt properties with the change.

Bracey was at a Wednesday news conference at the state Capitol about the issue.

Continue reading “Mayor Kim Bracey says proposed constitutional change for charities could mean less money for York” »

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York County Senators assigned committee posts

Today, Pennsylvania Senate President Pro Tempore Sen. Joe Scarnati announced Republican Standing Committee memberships for the 2015-2016 Legislative Session.

Senators representing portions of York County received three chairmanships and four vice-chairmanships.

A look at each senator’s appointments can be seen after the jump. Continue reading “York County Senators assigned committee posts” »

Posted in Mike Folmer, Pat Vance, Pennsylvania State Government, Richard Alloway, Scott Wagner, State Government, State Senate | Leave a comment

Wolf picks Lancaster superintendent to lead Department of Education

Gov-elect Tom Wolf announced his picks to lead the Department of Education and the Department of Labor & Industry. Here is the full release:

Continue reading “Wolf picks Lancaster superintendent to lead Department of Education” »

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