Tomorrow breaks the record for the longest Pennsylvania has ever gone without a state budget. Today is the 101st day, tying the record set in 2009. The latest budget proposal was voted on a straight party line yesterday, with only 73 Democrats voting for it. While the governor says that’s progress, he’s encouraging more compromise. The current proposal calls for a severance tax on certain oil drillers and, namely, a spike in personal income tax. Repuclicans says that’s not gonna fly because the tax will hurt the middle class the most.
John Boehner says he will stay on as GOP House Speaker until a new speaker is elected. His statement came after House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy stunned the political world and announced he’s out of the race for Speaker. The heavily-favored California Republican withdrew his name in a closed meeting of House Republicans. Boehner is retiring at month’s end.
Drug criminals once described by prosecutors as unrepentant repeat offenders are among those poised to benefit from new sentencing guidelines that are shrinking punishments for thousands of federal prisoners, according to an Associated Press review of court records. Many defendants cleared for early release starting this fall fit a more sympathetic profile: small-time dealers targeted by a draconian approach to drug enforcement.
A dangerous type of caterpillar has made its way from Canada to our area. They’re white and fluffy and enticing for kids to pick up. However, they’re poisonous. When touched or held the person will break out in a rash just minutes later and it progressively gets worse and painful. Doctors say the black spines in this caterpillar are packed with venom it’s apparently the caterpillar’s defense mechanism against larger predators. There have been many reported cases, but none fatal. Doctors say if you come across one of these caterpillars, don’t panic. The rash is temporary and in most cases can be treated from home.
The state’s House of Representatives will vote Wednesday on a package of revenue sources with the intent to restore cuts to education funding imposed in 2011. The executive director of the Education Law Center cited the fact that Pennsylvania now has the widest gap between rich and poor districts than any other state in the union. If the revenue bill passes, there is no guarantee that funds for education will increase without the passage of a budget bill but without new revenue resources, the state faces a budget deficit of more than 2 billion dollars, next year.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter promises a full investigation into whether U.S. forces bombed a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Afghanistan. Speaking from Madrid, Carter said the probe will be transparent but cautioned it would take time to get all the facts. The suspected U.S airstrike Saturday killed at least 22 people in Kunduz. The aid group says dozens more were injured.
Vice President Joe Biden is close to deciding whether or not he will run for president and the announcement could come this week. According to Multiple sources, the VP is leaning toward running for the White House. Even if Biden decides to jump into the race, its expected that he will sit out of the first Democratic primary debate on October 13th.
The state’s attorney general finds herself in even more trouble with the law. A second set of charges were filed yesterday in Montgomery County against Attorney General Kathleen Kane including another count of perjury. The new charges say that Kane signed paperwork that proves she lied last year to the special grand jury which investigated her. The charges stem from a raid at her office last month. Kane continues to say the facts will come out and she will be exonerated.
Tragedy has struck today in Douglas County Oregon.
Oregon State Police report ten people are dead and at least twenty injured after a shooting at the Umpqua Community College in Roseburg which is in southwest Oregon. Police report that the shooter is in custody and the school is on lockdown.
Williamsport parking authority has recently installed new parking meters in the lots along Market Street adjacent to the James V. Brown library. The meters allow customers to pay at a centralized machine to park in the lots. The Parking authority says they will hold a demonstration of the new meters between the hours of 11am and 1pm both tomorrow and on Monday of next week. The plans are to replace individual meters in other lots in the city as well.