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Pennsylvania lawmakers plan to vote on nearly $48B budget, almost 2 weeks late

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Pennsylvania lawmakers plan to vote on nearly $48B budget, almost 2 weeks late


Pennsylvania lawmakers planned to begin grinding through a series of votes Thursday to finalize a budget deal that took nearly two weeks into the new fiscal year to reach, slowed by disagreements during closed-door negotiations over Democrats’ push for more public schools aid.

The $47.7 billion plan for the fiscal year that started July 1 represents a 6% increase over last year’s approved spending, with most of the new money going toward public schools, services for adults with intellectual disabilities, and hospital and nursing home care for the poor.

Hundreds of pages of budget-related legislation were just starting to become public Thursday, with briefings of rank-and-file lawmakers and votes expected to last much of the day in the Republican-controlled Senate and Democratic-controlled House.

The legislation could reach Democratic Gov. Josh Shapiro’s desk by late Thursday, within hours of being unveiled.

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The plan does not increase sales or income tax rates, the state’s two major revenue sources, although the package carries tax cuts for businesses and the lower-income workers.

It will require some of the state’s $14 billion in surplus cash to balance, reserves that accumulated the last three years thanks to federal COVID-19 aid and inflation-juiced tax collections. Shapiro initially sought a 7% increase to $48.3 billion.



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Pennsylvania Democratic Party Chair: Some PA delegates believe Biden shouldn’t run

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Pennsylvania Democratic Party Chair: Some PA delegates believe Biden shouldn’t run


(WHTM) – Pennsylvania Democratic Party Chairperson and State Senator Sharif Street says there is concern in the Democratic Party and some members do not want to see President Joe Biden leading the ticket going into the Democratic National Convention.

“I haven’t done a tally but there are people that believe that,” said Street (D-Philadelphia) when asked how many people in the Pennsylvania delegation going to Chicago for the convention want the 81-year-old President to step aside.

“It’s hard to say,” said Street when asked about the likelihood of Biden still being atop the party’s ticket. “Whether he’s the candidate or a different Democrat, we can look at the policies of the Biden-Harris administration have been extremely successful, very few people question that. What they question is first, President Biden’s health and that’s something he has to make an evaluation of.”

Nationally Democrats are concerned that a poor performance by the President on Election Day could affect Congressional and local races. Senator Bob Casey has remained steadfast in his support of Biden and Governor Josh Shapiro, rumored to be a potential replacement, told reporters Friday “I think it is super unhelpful to engage in any hypothetical. The president has made clear he is running, I support the president. I think there is a clear contrast in this race.”

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Street says there are some in the party feeling concerned about potential issues down-ballot seeing that Pennsylvania has a contested Senate seat and a narrow majority in the State House.

“I don’t know if nervous is the word, but I can tell you we are concerned,” said Street. “We’re not taking anything for granted.”

Street added that there weren’t many who believed Democrats could flip the State House, as well as win a U.S. Senate seat, the Governor’s Mansion, and other local races that year.


Every week, This Week in Pennsylvania gives a comprehensive look at the week’s biggest news events in Pennsylvania, provided by the abc27 News team, along with the latest updates on local stories.

Check your local listings for weekly air times.

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New text message from the 'Pennsylvania Turnpike Toll Services' is a scam

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New text message from the 'Pennsylvania Turnpike Toll Services' is a scam


From Philly and the Pa. suburbs to South Jersey and Delaware, what would you like WHYY News to cover? Let us know!

If you received a text message from the “Pennsylvania Turnpike Toll Services,” do not engage with it — it’s a scam.

The “smishing” (SMS/Phishing) scam falsely informs individuals that they have unpaid toll fees and threatens additional charges if the fees are not paid promptly. The scam includes a link that impersonates the official Pennsylvania Turnpike website, directing victims to pay the fraudulent fees.

According to Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) Press Secretary Marissa Orbanek, they received over 3,000 reports since Saturday, when the PTC was first notified of the scam.

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The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission has reported over 3000 scams similar to this one since Saturday. (Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission)

While the scammers are contacting PTC customers, Orbanek reiterated there was no security breach or loss of official information. The scammers randomly messaged drivers who live inside and outside of Pennsylvania. Orbanek said the PTC will never directly communicate with customers through text messages.

In a statement released Saturday, the PTC advised potential victims of the scam on how to handle the perilous text message.

“People who receive an unsolicited text, email, or similar message suggesting it is from the PA Turnpike or another toll agency should not click on the link.”



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Video: Trump's Unique Tribute To Firefighter Who Died In Pennsylvania Shooting

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Video: Trump's Unique Tribute To Firefighter Who Died In Pennsylvania Shooting


Donald Trump solemnly presented the man’s helmet and uniform, kissing them in homage.

Washington:

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Donald Trump, in his acceptance speech today after presidential nomination at the Republican convention in Milwaukee, paid tribute to the man who lost his life during the shooting at his rally in Pennsylvania last week.

In his first public address since surviving an assassination attempt, Trump honoured Corey Comperatore, the firefighter who was killed by the shooter. He solemnly presented the man’s helmet and uniform, kissing them in homage before a hushed crowd. Trump hailed Corey as a “highly respected former fire chief” and recounted how he “lost his life selflessly acting as a human shield to protect others”. He asked for a moment of silence to honour the firefighter.

Trump also paid his respects to those injured in the attack, referring to them as “dedicated Trumpsters”.

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Last week, during a campaign rally in Pennsylvania, the former US President was struck near the ear in an assassination attempt by a 20-year-old man.

Agents from the Secret Service, the law enforcement agency responsible for protecting US political leaders, swiftly intervened, rushing to the stage and escorting him quickly to a nearby vehicle.

The gunman and a bystander were killed, and two spectators were critically injured. The man was a 50-year-old firefighter Corey Comperatore.





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