Pennsylvania budget talks are set to resume Wednesday
Pennsylvania voters will have a chance to watch the candidates for the state's appellate courts face off in debates Wednesday and Thursday. The Pennsylvania Cable Network will air a debate held at Widener College with the seven Supreme Court candidates beginning at 5 p.m. Republican candidates include Commonwealth Court Judge Anne Covey of Bucks County, Adams County Common Pleas Judge Michael George of Gettysburg and Superior Court Judge Judy Olson of Wexford. Democrats include Superior Court Judge Christine Donohue of Point Breeze, Philadelphia Common Pleas Judge Kevin Dougherty and Superior Court Judge David Wecht of Indiana Township.
Beyond confirming that former state Education Secretary Ron Tomalis did little, if any, actual work as a special higher-education adviser to Republican Gov. Tom Corbett, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale's audit of the Education Department highlights many ways it needs to improve under Democrat Gov. Tom Wolf. Mr. Tomalis' 14-month advisory role, which began in June 2013, had no job description but paid him the same $140,000 salary he enjoyed as a Cabinet member — and sweetened his annual state pension by $7,000. The audit found just one email he sent and one entry on his electronic calendar for three months in 2014. As Mr. DePasquale put it, “that's nice ‘work' if you can get it.” Mr. Wolf's administration must ensure nobody else gets such “work.” The audit also found that from July 1, 2010, to July 1, 2015, the department filled key jobs with retirees and fell short in helping 561 failing schools, including 100-plus in Western Pennsylvania. Oh, and the Education Department hasn't updated its master plan since 1999.
- Early Intervention
- Assistive Technology
- General update on the state of special education, both in Philadelphia and nationally
- The PEAL Center
- Sonja Kerr
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House Majority Leader Rep. Dave Reed, (717) 705-7173
Senate President Pro Tempore Sen. Joe Scarnati, (717) 787-7084
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Jake Corman, (717) 787-1377