News & Brews September 17, 2021
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PLCB to ration some booze
Blaming supply shortages outside of its control, the state-run liquor monopoly will start rationing sales of several dozen products beginning today. The rationing, which will be in effect “for the foreseeable future” includes some champaign, bourbon, tequila, cognac, and whiskey.
PSERS again rejects investment recommendation
The PSERS drama continues. This time, the PSERS board voted 14-1 “against a recommendation that the plan pump at least another $25 million into one of its largest investments, the YES Communities chain of mobile-home parks,” the Inquirer reports. This rejection was far more decisive than the last rejection (which tallied an 8-7 vote). Either way, the Inky notes that such rejections are a “rare event.” Indeed, they represent a lack of confidence in the investment strategy of PSERS’ top staff.
PA maintains spot as nation’s top electricity exporter
StateImpact Pennsylvania reports that the commonwealth kept its position in 2020 as the country’s top electricity exporter, sending more than 79 million megawatt hours of electricity to other states. This was an increase from the previous high of 70.5 million megawatt hours in 2019.
Lawmaker wins year-long transparency battle with Wolf administration
Here’s another win for transparency against the Wolf administration’s opaqueness. Last year, Gov. Wolf ordered Lebanon County businesses to stay closed longer than businesses in any other county in the state—a move widely viewed as retribution against the county for bucking Wolf’s orders. At the time, Rep. Frank Ryan filed a Right-to-Know request with the Department of Health (DOH) seeking the data the Wolf administration used to keep the county closed. DOH denied the request. Ryan appealed to the Office of Open Records and won his appeal. But instead of complying and being transparent, DOH went to court to maintain secrecy. Days before the case was set to be heard, DOH caved and released the data. Seriously, the Wolf administration shouldn’t work this hard to keep secrets from Pennsylvanians.
Shapiro says Krasner can’t sue him over opioid settlement
Democrat Attorney General Josh Shapiro has touted his ‘historic’ national opioid settlement, but some Democrat district attorneys are saying not so fast. Philadelphia D.A. Larry Krasner sued Shapiro, accusing him of ‘selling out’ for a settlement that won’t bring enough money to Philadelphia. And Allegheny County D.A. Stephen Zappala also sued Shapiro over the settlement. Now, Shapiro has fired back, claiming Krasner doesn’t have the power to sue him. The Inquirer has the latest.
Q&A with PA GOP gubernatorial candidate Joe Gale
Continuing its series of interviews with gubernatorial candidates, the progressive Pennsylvania Capital-Star sat down with Montgomery County Commissioner Joe Gale, who is running for the Republican nomination for governor. The conversation covered why Gale says he’s “anti-establishment and independent” of his own party and why he doesn’t want the GOP’s endorsement. Read the piece here.