Talk of a tax increase is driving a wedge between leaders of a growing Pa. township and its fire company
Talk of a tax increase is driving a wedge between leaders of a growing Pa. township and its fire company

With costs rising and donations down, more volunteer fire companies are turning to public support — and facing questions about transparency.

September 7th, 8:52 AM EDT
Pa. lawmakers spent at least $3 million on private lawyers, experts during redistricting battle, invoices show
Pa. lawmakers spent at least $3 million on private lawyers, experts during redistricting battle, invoices show

The new districts have the potential to change the balance of power in both Harrisburg and Washington, so it’s not surprising that legal action played a major role during the process.

September 5th, 5:52 PM EDT
Thousands of Pa. nursing home workers may strike despite $600M for care in state budget
Thousands of Pa. nursing home workers may strike despite $600M for care in state budget

Workers for two for-profit companies fear the bulk of the money won’t be used to alleviate longer working hours, expanded job responsibilities, and even food rationing for residents.

September 1st, 2:49 PM EDT
The business of volunteer fire companies has become harder to sustain. Can collaboration help?
The business of volunteer fire companies has become harder to sustain. Can collaboration help?

Five volunteer fire companies in Centre County are participating in a state study to determine how better collaboration among them might alleviate some cost and staffing challenges.

August 30th, 11:46 AM EDT
Pa.’s unreliable lobbyist disclosure website is getting a user-friendly upgrade
Pa.’s unreliable lobbyist disclosure website is getting a user-friendly upgrade

More than 15 line items received a more than 100% boost in this year’s budget, including an upgrade to a website for lobbyists that has reportedly resulted in inaccurate disciplinary action.

August 29th, 1:43 PM EDT
New report on racial bias in Pa. State Police traffic stops delayed by data problems, officials say
New report on racial bias in Pa. State Police traffic stops delayed by data problems, officials say

State Police resumed collecting traffic stop data in 2021 after a Spotlight PA investigation found the department stopped tracking the information a decade ago.

August 26th, 2:15 PM EDT
Major shift in medical malpractice rules in Pa. could help victims, but opponents fear the cost
Major shift in medical malpractice rules in Pa. could help victims, but opponents fear the cost

The state’s high court will allow such cases to be filed in any county in the state, as opposed to the county where harm occurred, potentially leading to more claims and higher payouts.

August 25th, 5:13 PM EDT
Your license plate frame is enough for police in Pa. to pull you over, court rules
Your license plate frame is enough for police in Pa. to pull you over, court rules

The judges found the state’s vehicle code prohibits any part of the plate from being covered, including the visitpa.com website of the state’s tourism office.

August 24th, 3:33 PM EDT
Why people in State College and rural north-central Pa. don’t have easy access to in-person abortion services
Why people in State College and rural north-central Pa. don’t have easy access to in-person abortion services

Costly regulations and smaller populations relative to urban areas have prevented any providers from opening since one in State College closed after a series of scandals.

August 23rd, 4:30 PM EDT
Commonwealth Court orders Pa.’s health department to release information on medical marijuana program
Commonwealth Court orders Pa.’s health department to release information on medical marijuana program

For more than a year, the Department of Health has fought to block Spotlight PA’s request for information. Judges rejected the agency’s arguments calling one claim “undeveloped.”

August 22nd, 10:01 AM EDT
Pa. lawmakers are set to get huge raises next year. They can return them, but almost nobody does.
Pa. lawmakers are set to get huge raises next year. They can return them, but almost nobody does.

Inflation is pushing the Pa. legislature’s annual cost-of-living adjustments even higher, with base salaries expected to exceed $100,000 in 2023.

August 17th, 5:59 PM EDT
Pa. lawmakers weigh bill that would allow independents to vote on primary candidates
Pa. lawmakers weigh bill that would allow independents to vote on primary candidates

Pennsylvania has closed primary elections, meaning only registered Democrats and Republicans can vote for candidates from those parties and choose who will advance to the general.

August 16th, 4:48 PM EDT
Penn State spent half a million dollars on police overtime at football games in 2021
Penn State spent half a million dollars on police overtime at football games in 2021

Local police officers make double their hourly rate when working overtime at Penn State football games, a cost the university reimburses.

August 15th, 3:48 PM EDT
Critics call water quality bill moving through Pa. legislature a back door to privatization
Critics call water quality bill moving through Pa. legislature a back door to privatization

The bill requires some public water systems to create an asset management plan, a mandate that municipal leaders and environmental groups called a solution in search of a problem.

August 5th, 3:48 PM EDT
Penn State did not prove its legal standing to have public court filing sealed, experts say
Penn State did not prove its legal standing to have public court filing sealed, experts say

Penn State said it wanted to protect affected students from potential embarrassment, but legal experts said that explanation doesn’t meet legal requirements.

August 4th, 3:48 PM EDT
Penn State won’t answer key questions about its handling of sexual extortion involving student athletes
Penn State won’t answer key questions about its handling of sexual extortion involving student athletes

Penn State won’t answer important questions after student athletes were allegedly extorted into taking and sharing sexually explicit photos and videos of themselves and others.

August 2nd, 3:43 PM EDT
Pa. Supreme Court upholds no-excuse mail voting ahead of midterms
Pa. Supreme Court upholds no-excuse mail voting ahead of midterms

A lower appellate court earlier this year sided with Republican lawmakers, saying that permitting no-excuse mail voting required amending the state constitution.

August 2nd, 3:27 PM EDT
Wolf sues GOP-led legislature to block abortion, voter ID questions from reaching Pa. ballot box
Wolf sues GOP-led legislature to block abortion, voter ID questions from reaching Pa. ballot box

The Democratic governor is claiming legislative Republicans unconstitutionally lumped together five pieces of their “failed” agenda into a package of proposed amendments.

July 28th, 3:27 PM EDT
Wolf quietly steers $40 million to Pitt, Pa.’s other state-related universities
Wolf quietly steers $40 million to Pitt, Pa.’s other state-related universities

The move follows opponents of abortion access in the state House unsuccessfully attempting to block funding for the schools over Pitt’s research using fetal tissue.

July 25th, 3:25 PM EDT
Pa.’s unemployment trust fund is broke. The Wolf admin says a long-term fix will save taxpayers millions.
Pa.’s unemployment trust fund is broke. The Wolf admin says a long-term fix will save taxpayers millions.

The state’s new budget pays off $42 million in debt, but backers say a bigger policy change is needed to prepare the system for future downturns.

July 22nd, 2:56 PM EDT
A beginner’s guide to requesting public records on Pa. law enforcement
A beginner’s guide to requesting public records on Pa. law enforcement

Interviews with experts and an analysis of data from the Pennsylvania Office of Open Records offer tips for successfully using the state’s Right-to-Know Law.

July 21st, 11:50 AM EDT
New Pa. budget injects $125M into private school tax credit program that lacks basic accountability
New Pa. budget injects $125M into private school tax credit program that lacks basic accountability

A lack of transparency baked into state law makes it impossible to determine whether the program is actually improving outcomes for students who receive tuition assistance.

July 18th, 11:46 AM EDT
Top Pa. lawmakers have tentative deal to ban private money, increase funding for county election offices
Top Pa. lawmakers have tentative deal to ban private money, increase funding for county election offices

The exact language of the deal is still being written, and, if finalized, it would need approval from lawmakers in both chambers as well as Gov. Tom Wolf.

June 23rd, 12:53 PM EDT
Statewide Pennsylvania police hiring database hindered by loopholes, lack of enforcement
Statewide Pennsylvania police hiring database hindered by loopholes, lack of enforcement

The database was hailed as a model to stop bad officers from hopping from one job to another. But now State Police say legislative changes are needed to make it more effective.

June 21st, 12:38 PM EDT