Two Pennsylvania state senators told colleagues this week they are drafting a measure to count in-person ballots rather than absentee ballots in instances when someone uses both methods to vote.
Before Act 77, a 2019 law letting Pennsylvanians vote by mail without an excuse like illness or travel, those who submitted absentee ballots but became able to vote in person could do so while having their absentee ballots voided. The new law however directs election boards to let an absentee voter cast their vote in person using a provisional ballot; in cases when the mail-in ballot was received by 8 p.m. on Election Day, the earlier mail-in ballot, not the in-person one, is recorded.
Pennsylvania state Senator Jarrett Coleman (R-Allentown) this week introduced a measure requiring colleagues to take defined-contribution (DC) savings plans rather than traditional pensions.
Coleman, an airline pilot and former Parkland School District director, won his first Senate election last year on a reformist platform and has since briskly worked to effect change regarding education, election integrity, regulation and other issues. Now he’s asking members of his chamber to consider a policy directly affecting their own bottom lines. He believes it’s an important initial step toward more making the commonwealth’s employee retirement programs more solvent.
Pennsylvania State Senators Cris Dush (R-Bellefonte) and Jarrett Coleman (R-Allentown) are preparing legislation to withdraw the commonwealth from the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC).
Over two dozen states and the District of Columbia participate in the election data-sharing system which they use to identify errors in their voter rolls. But seven states — Alabama, Florida, Iowa, Ohio, Louisiana, Missouri and West Virginia — recently cancelled their membership in the program.
Two Pennsylvania State House members are preparing to introduce a bill to facilitate parents’ and taxpayers’ access to K-12 school curricula.
In a memorandum asking colleagues to cosponsor their measure, Representatives Kristin Marcell (R-Richboro) and Jill Cooper (R-New Kensington) argue current school transparency requirements are inadequate. While state law mandates that school boards post policies governing curriculum review, district officials need not publish the actual syllabus or name the instructional texts. Districts must provide residents access to course outlines and texts, but that usually entails an interested party visiting the school.
Pennsylvania state Senator Jarrett Coleman (R-Allentown) last week sent a memo to colleagues asking them to support an upcoming resolution to audit Allentown’s Neighborhood Improvement Zone (NIZ).
Under the program state lawmakers established in 2009, developers can use state and local tax money to offset the debts they incur on construction and rehabilitation projects in designated parts of Pennsylvania’s third-largest city. Areas within the NIZ include the Lehigh River’s westside waterfront north of Union Street and south of American Parkway as well as the PPL Center hockey arena and many of its surrounding blocks. Allentown is the only city with a neighborhood subject to this program, but the state has created similar zones in Bethlehem and Lancaster.
Four Republican state senators are encouraging their colleagues to join them in legislating to keep a new requirement from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) from going into effect in Pennsylvania.
Two decades ago, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) began requiring that heavy-duty diesel-vehicle engines receive CARB certification as part of the agency’s Heavy-Duty Diesel Emissions Control Program.