News & Brews February 25, 2022
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Wolf admin opposes GOP leader’s quest to use current state election maps
As court considers appeal, Wolf wants mail-in voting to stay
GOP gubernatorial candidate suspends campaign, files for Congress
Republican Guy Ciarrocchi, former President and CEO of the Chester County Chamber of Business & Industry, suspended his campaign for governor yesterday and has filed FEC paperwork to run for Congress against Democrat Rep. Chrissy Houlahan. Ciarrocchi worked tirelessly last year to encourage Pennsylvanians to vote YES on two constitutional amendments to rein in a governor’s emergency powers, and throughout his campaign, he has been a staunch supporter of school choice. He is the second candidate to exit the governor’s race, following Sen. Scott Martin earlier this month. Nearly a dozen candidates remain in the GOP primary.
Report: Why PA needs Wisconsin-style union reform
Our friends at the Commonwealth Foundation (CF) released a new analysis of the impact of Wisconsin’s landmark labor reform of 2011. The analysis shows “Act 10 has reined in public union special privileges and restored workers’ rights while saving Wisconsin taxpayers billions of dollars.” CF concludes that PA should enact the same types of reforms. Check out a summary of key findings here, or view the full report here.
Lawmaker introduces updated school property tax elimination plan
Republican Rep. Frank Ryan (Lebanon County) has been working for years to eliminate school property taxes in Pennsylvania. PennLive reports that Ryan has introduced an updated plan to do just that. Ryan acknowledges the plan will be a tough sell, however, as it would require a tax shift. Specifically, it would increase the personal income tax by 1.85 percentage points, apply the new 4.92% income tax to some retirement incomes (with several exceptions), and raise and expand the sales tax. Read more here.
Facing sentencing and more trials, Johnny Doc to get big retirement party
Facing sentencing and two more trials, convicted Philly labor leader John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty is set to get a huge retirement bash. The Inquirer reports that tickets for the March 10 celebration are going for $200, with five-figure sponsorships available. Ads in the commemorative book for the event are selling for $500 to $5,000. Proceeds will go to cover medical bills for Dougherty’s wife, who has been battling a neurological disorder. Johnny Doc, former head of IBEW Local 98 and once considered the most powerful unelected politician in Pennsylvania, was convicted in November on bribery charges and awaits two more trials. Since 2010, his union has doled out more than $40 million in political expenses and contributions.