STEM better idea for county school

In their state of the county presentation last week, Lackawanna County Commissioners Jim Wansacz, Ed Staback and Patrick O’Malley raised the idea of a countywide high school for the performing arts. That’s not a bad idea. Arts are a crucial but underappre

Madness in Indianapolis

The NCAA’s Final Four basketball contenders and hordes of their fans will descend upon Indianapolis this week. But the state Legislature there and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence already have engaged in their own form of March Madness. Embracing bigotry and shame

Union board accelerates city’s demise

It cannot be said that Scranton’s pension boards, retirement arms of the municipal unions, are killing the golden goose because they helped to exterminate that poor creature long ago. Their threats to sue the city government unless pensioners receive rais

Pregnant with inequality

The Supreme Court last week departed from its trend of diminishing workers’ rights by ruling in favor of Peggy Young. A former UPS driver, Ms. Young sued the company for refusing to accommodate her medical condition after her doctor restricted her to lift

Fund schools, taper control

There is scant doubt that Pennsylvanians want the state government to provide a higher percentage of funding for public schools. It’s a fundamental reason that Tom Wolf, rather than Tom Corbett, is the governor. But the focus on funding — revenue — has ob

Hall for Rose, not dugout

Rob Manfred, the new commissioner of Major League Baseball, has begun to act on an ambitious early agenda. Recognizing the glacial pace of many games, Mr. Manfred will put a clock on pitchers and batters and the time between innings. Acknowledging that fe

Fashion cops don’t get appointment Police commissioner nominee deserves confirmation

Tom Wolf is the duly elected governor of Pennsylvania, which gives him authority over the Pennsylvania State Police. In furtherance of that responsibility, he has nominated a highly qualified candidate — Marcus Brown, a former Baltimore police officer and

Israel spies on U.S. — again

Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said last week that “there is no way” that Israel spied on the United States regarding sensitive negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program. Perhaps he should have added, “Just ask Jonathan Pollard.” Mr. Pollard

Put next DEP meeting on live ECTV Secretary’s point raises hope for landfill expansion foes

John Quigley, acting state secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection, has issued some encouraging signals about the Wolf administration’s approach to the proposed massive expansion of the Keystone Sanitary Landfill. Crucially, he said recent

Organ donors extend lives

More than 400 people in Pennsylvania die each year as they await organ transplants. More than 8,500 Pennsylvanians are among 120,000 Americans on waiting lists for transplants. Organ donations extend and improve lives. Donations from one person can length

Unify drug courts, system

There is unfortunate symmetry to the vastly divergent administration of drug courts across Pennsylvania, in that it mirrors much of the rest of the criminal justice system. As reported by Public Source, a statewide reporting project that works in concert

State still not up to speed

Successive state administrations and state legislators eagerly have embraced the natural gas industry while contending that the government has well-regulated the enterprise in the public interest. Unfortunately, as the industry matures, it continues to de

Bully pulpit still crucial

Sen. Bob Casey can’t unilaterally stop the expansion of the Keystone Sanitary Landfill. He’s a federal legislator, and the dump’s expansion is in the realm of state-level executive branch action — permitting, regulation and compliance. But as most local o

Don’t ground warrants

California Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a well-considered bill last week by which the Legislature had attempted to get ahead of a rapidly developing trend and protect individual privacy rights. The bill would have required police to obtain warrants before depl

Spur progresson prisons

A lingering mystery of last year’s gubernatorial campaign is why former Gov. Tom Corbett did not emphasize one of the most successful aspects of his administration — corrections reform. Gov. Tom Wolf, who defeated Mr. Corbett, recognized the improvement.

Obamacare will survive

President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act five years ago today, an anniversary that finds the landmark health care law under continual political fire but growing public acceptance. The Republican-controlled House and Senate las

Big surpluses shrink

HARRISBURG — The surplus kept by House lawmakers to get through a budget stalemate has shrunk by more than half since the figure reported by the most recent legislative audit. The uncommitted surplus for the House now stands at $31 million — down $42 mill

Finally, idea for sensible state help Pension consolidationcould offer hope for city

The Courtright administration recently advertised to sell the Scranton Sewer Authority, an effort to deposit the value of the city government’s last remaining sound asset into the voracious black hole of runaway municipal pension costs. Mayor Bill Courtri

Wolf: PLCB’s cup truly half empty

Gov. Tom Wolf, who portrayed himself as a savvy businessman as he ran for office, thinks that the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board produces only about 44 percent of the profit it should generate, even though it has a complete monopoly over wholesale and

Oregon drives vote effort

It’s an inspirational thing when legislators aren’t afraid of voters, when they don’t gerrymander them into irrelevance or contrive means to deprive them of access to the polls. Pennsylvanians, alas, cannot yet look to their own Legislature for such inspi

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