News & Brews June 8, 2022

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PSEA is super-scared of workers’ rights

In response to news that the state House may soon advance legislation to protect workers’ privacy (HB844), bring greater transparency to government union contracts (HB845), ensure workers are notified of their rights (HB2042), and prevent taxpayer resources from being used for political ends (HB2048), the state’s largest teachers’ union put out a panicked press release opposing the bills. Among the PSEA’s more humorous logic is that public employees shouldn’t be notified that they aren’t required to join a union because they already know. So, if they already know (supposedly), what’s the great harm in telling them? Hmmm.

Multiple write-in candidates make ballot in western PA

In Allegheny County, six candidates for state House who mounted write-in campaigns succeeded in gaining enough votes to get on the November ballot. They are: Republican Matt Kruth in the 20th District [who will face Democrat Rep. Emily Kinkead], Democrat Alison Duncan in the 28th District [who will face Republican Rep. Rob Mercuri], Democrat Richard Self in the 39th District [who will face Republican Andrew Kuzma], Democrat Sharon Guidi in the 40th District [who will face Republican Rep. Natalie Mihalek], Republican Patricia Tylka in the 42nd District [who will face Democrat Rep. Daniel Miller], and Democrat Debra Turici in the 44th District [who will face GOP Rep. Valerie Gaydos].

House passes gov’t contracts transparency bill

The state House yesterday unanimously approved legislation, sponsored by Republican Rep. Seth Grove (York County), that would allow the state Treasurer to withhold payments on a contract until that contract is posted on the Treasury website for the public to see. The LNP notes that the issue was reported by The Caucus “almost four years ago when an informal audit by the news organization revealed missing contracts and others that were heavily redacted.” Three cheers for a win for government transparency!

Senate passes Fairness in Women’s Sports Act

Yesterday, the state Senate voted 30-20 in favor of the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, which would ensure women are not forced to compete against biological males on school sports teams. Gov. Wolf has pledged to veto the bill should it reach his desk. Also yesterday, House and Senate lawmakers held a press conference on the legislation, which you can watch here.

State rep could face DUI charges after crash

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that Rep. Matt Dowling (Fayette and Somerset counties) could face charges of driving under the influence after he was involved in a car accident this past weekend. In a letter yesterday, Dowling wrote that he has “entered professional treatment to appropriately address any possible alcohol issues.”

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