News & Brews July 11, 2023

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Republican DA announces run for attorney general

Yesterday, York County District Attorney Dave Sunday became the first Republican to enter the race for state attorney general. A Navy veteran, Sunday previously served as special assistant U.S. attorney for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. He has been the York County DA since 2018.  He joins Democrats Eugene DePasquale, Joe Khan, and Keir Bradford-Grey in the race.

Poll: Support for recreational marijuana falls (with caveat)

The Muhlenberg College Public Health Program 2023 survey showed support among Pennsylvanians for recreational marijuana fell to 50% from 56% in 2022. This is down from a high of 58% in 2021 and is the first time support has fallen in 10 years. The pollsters were quick to note, however, that the change falls within the margin of error. “The small shift in opinion on this matter may simply be the product of sampling error,” they wrote. “[B]ut for the first time in a decade, support for legalization did not rise in the Commonwealth.”

Budget mess is ‘rare misstep’ for Shapiro

The Inquirer looks at how Shapiro’s bungling of the state budget is a “rare misstep” for the new governor, who is “a master communicator, who has worked to cultivate a bipartisan image.” As for how it will affect his ability to work with the legislature going forward, that remains to be seen. “Democrats and public education advocates ultimately got what they wanted, though hurt feelings may linger. Republicans, meanwhile, say their trust has been broken — and that could affect Shapiro’s ability to get things done in the divided chamber.”

Op-Ed: Senate must reverse higher mortgage fees

Pa. Treasurer Stacy Garrity writes that a new Federal Housing Finance Agency rule “penalizes” those who “play by the rules … with higher mortgage fees.” She calls on the U.S. Senate to pass the Middle Class Borrower Protection Act, which the House previously passed. And she writes of her efforts leading a national “coalition of more than 30 fiscal officers from 26 other states calling for this policy to be scrapped.”

10 things to know about the budget stalemate

Code bills, procedural requirements, higher ed funding, and more. City & State PA explains some of the ins and outs of the state budget impasse. Why can’t Gov. Shapiro sign the spending plan even though both chambers have passed it? What’s the holdup on funding for state-related universities? When will lawmakers return to Harrisburg? And more.

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