Jessup zoning cure inevitable

Jessup Borough Council last week exercised admirable judgment by acknowledging a flaw in the town’s restrictive zoning ordinance. Council voted 6-1 on Wednesday to confirm that the borough’s zoning regulation is deficient by excluding power plants. Counci

Renew law for conservation

When Congress returns from its long summer vacation, one of the things it quickly should take up is ... vacations. That is, it quickly should renew the Land and Water Conservation Fund, the principal vehicle that the government has used since 1965 to help

Online voter registration long overdue

Pennsylvania, 15 years into the 21st century, long has had access to technology to make voter registration easier than ever. Yet the state has 2 million unregistered but otherwise eligible voters because, until now, the political will of state leaders to

Coke’s plan refreshes

Coca-Cola earned mostly derision recently for an effort to deflect the focus on obesity from sugary drinks to exercise. It deserves the opposite, however, for an unrelated initiative that is producing great results for the environment and access to clean

Fix charter problems

A Delaware County judge has struck down the key provision of the Wolf administration-backed bailout plan for the failing Chester Upland School District — a decision that reverberates in all of Pennsylvania’s 500 public school districts. A financial expert

Katrina can happen again

New Orleans stood naked a decade ago today, as Hurricane Katrina barreled across the Gulf of Mexico into the mouth of the Mississippi River. Natural downstream defenses against the coming storm surge — thousands of square miles of dunes, swamps and grassl

Case shows wisdom of moratorium

Kareem Johnson is not an upstanding citizen. By the time he was convicted in 2007 of murdering a potential witness in a different murder trial, he already was serving a life sentence for killing a 10-year-old boy who was hit by a stray bullet, fired by Mr

Good nest for Big Bird

Can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street? asks the ground-breaking show’s theme song. Beginning this fall, the route is through premium cable and its related avenues. HBO and Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit producer of “Sesame Street,” have

Protect digital student data

Students might get more than they expect when their parents use smartphone “apps” to improve communication with school districts and teachers, or when teachers use educational apps to enhance classroom instruction. When the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette looked

No insurance against bad public policy

A lawsuit filed last week on behalf of subscribers of the former Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania should interest legislators and regulators as much as the courts. The suit brought by Plains Twp. contends that prior to its recent merger with Highma

Stop show, negotiate real budget

There’s no business like show business, even when your job is supposed to be seeing to the operation of the state government. Having passed an unrealistic budget for the political purpose of making Gov. Tom Wolf veto it, Republican leaders who control the

Casey should support deal

Sen. Bob Casey, the Scranton Democrat, is among uncommitted senators who are receiving a full-court press from critics of the agreement between major powers and Iran to forestall that country’s development of a nuclear weapon in exchange for economic reli

Stop insurers from raising widows’ rates

Many husbands and wives have been known to chide one another about their driving skills. According to the Consumer Federation of America, many major insurance companies apparently agree with husbands, but posthumously, by raising car insurance rates on wi

Get to real health issue

While Republican presidential candidates spout fantasies about repealing the Affordable Care Act, “Obamacare,” Americans are sending a far different message about their health care expectations. Health care access is at an all-time high because the number

Checks don’t diminish gun rights

Pennsylvania law precludes people with records of felonies, domestic abuse or severe mental illness from owning firearms, which makes good sense and is not controversial. But many state lawmakers who cower before the gun lobby can’t bring themselves to en

Iran deal only realistic option

Opponents of the multinational nuclear accord with Iran voice many reasons for disapproval, but they offer no practical alternative. Insisting on a better deal, as antagonists proclaim, and calls for unilaterally stepping up U.S. economic sanctions would

Testing new, goal same

The numbers aren’t pretty. After the state government changed mandatory standardized tests to measure students’ proficiency in key subjects, those proficiency numbers plummeted in school districts throughout Northeast Pennsylvania. New testing reflects gr

Ban tobacco sales until 21

The healthiest and easiest way to deal with addiction is to not become addicted, a simple truth that finally should become the foundation of law and policy regarding tobacco. In March, the Institute of Medicine of the National Institutes of Health release

Crash test dummies

Congress often passes laws regarding public safety. When it does so, it should consider laws that aren’t subject to lobbying by well-financed private interests — that is, the laws of physics. Results of collisions between big trucks and passenger cars are

Mandate ‘geo-fences’ Drones may pose safety threat

Through Aug. 9, airline pilots had reported more than 650 drone sightings, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. In all of 2014, the FAA said, pilots reported only 238 such sightings. And according to Sen. Charles Schumer, the New York Democra

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