News & Brews February 21, 2023

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Pa. House reconvenes today — what’s next? 

House lawmakers will reconvene today for a special session, seven weeks after House Speaker Mark Rozzi adjourned the chamber. But as for what they’re going to do? That remains to be seen. Spotlight PA reports, “With the swearing-in of three special election winners scheduled for Tuesday, Democrats will have a 102-member majority — enough votes to pass temporary rules needed to move forward with a special session on abuse relief.” The story notes, however, that “House lawmakers aren’t expected to immediately address much thornier questions like how to handle sexual harassment complaints, how much control to give the new Republican minority over the chamber’s agenda, and who should be in charge for the rest of the two-year session.”

Allegheny County execs ‘show few differences in early forums’

The Democrats vying to be the next Allegheny County executive are seeking to differentiate themselves based on life experience, rather than on policy positions. So reports WESA based on two public forums that happened last week. At one forum, for example, each candidate said he or she opposed expanding fracking in the county. “Similarly, they all bemoaned conditions at the Allegheny County Jail, but none spoke supportively of privatizing functions there or at the now-closed Shuman Juvenile Detention Center.”

Committee to hold hearing today on regulatory reform

This morning at 9:30 a.m., the House Republican Policy Committee, chaired by Rep. Josh Kail (Beaver and Washington counties) will hold a hearing to “discuss the best pathways to crafting commonsense regulations and review the impact of existing regulations on communities.” The hearing will be live-streamed here.

Shapiro to join EPA, DeWine in East Palestine, Ohio today

Gov. Josh Shapiro will join Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, EPA Administrator Michael Regan, and other officials in East Palestine, Ohio today to provide an update on cleanup efforts following Norfolk Southern’s Feb. 3 train derailment. The news conference, which is scheduled to begin at approximately 12:30 p.m., can be live-streamed here.

How Philly Dems vote

If you like maps and data, you’ll like this Philly Inquirer story analyzing voting patterns among Philadelphia Democrats in primary elections (since 2015). The story posits that the city’s Dems vote largely along “racial, economic, and geographic lines,” with some groups supporting establishment-backed candidates and others trending further Left.

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