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Shapiro needs GOP support for key climate plan

Plus, the governor shares his PA-centric March Madness picks

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Friday, March 22, 2024
Today: Climate pitches, state salaries, election training, ‘greedflation’ fight, caring cuts, and the Guv’s guide to March Madness. Happy Friday.

Gov. Josh Shapiro is proposing a Pennsylvania-based alternative to a cap-and-trade plan aimed at fighting climate change, and a boost to renewable energy standards. The Democrat is seeking GOP support from a state Senate that has long resisted putting restrictions on the oil and gas industry.

His proposal has been met with optimism from labor, environmental, and consumer protection groups, but state Senate Majority Leader Joe Pittman (R., Indiana) pushed back on the pitch, saying it would be “a very difficult piece to support.” 

The proposed cap-and-trade program resembles the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a multistate effort championed by Shapiro’s predecessor.

Read Spotlight PA’s full report: Shapiro’s alternative to a key climate program comes with one major catch: It needs GOP support.


"We hope being around them, talking to them, pouring into them ...  they know that there is hope and ... there are Black men that care about Black boys."

—Organizer Kaliek Hayes on a Philly initiative to reduce violence by offering free haircuts and mentoring to young Black men
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TRUSTING ELECTIONS: Join us Tuesday, April 2, at 6 p.m. ET on Zoom for a live panel Q&A with Al Schmidt, secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of State, and Beth Schwanke, of Pitt‘s Disinformation Lab, on creating trust in our election system and how to combat misinformation. Register for the event here and submit your questions here or to events@spotlightpa.org

Regent Street in Philadelphia at night, via Sara E. Send us your photos by email, use #PAGems on IG, or tag us @spotlightpennsylvania
cars paked along a neighborhood street at night
Today's top news story in Pennsylvania.EVENT TAKEAWAYS: Determining whether a board meeting violates the Sunshine Act is one way to push for transparency from school officials. That is one lesson from Spotlight PA's recent discussion on openness and accountability in public education. Read more about the five key takeaways from the event.

Today's second top news story in Pennsylvania.INFLATION DEBATE: U.S. Sen. Bob Casey (D., Pa.), who is running for reelection, came down strongly against what he calls “greedflation” in a recent speech, the AP reports. Corporate price gouging, he argues, is hurting consumers, a stance his Republican opponent Dave McCormick called “nonsense.” The economy is a top concern among voters, and both parties are concentrating on it as the election ramps up.  

Today's third top news story in Pennsylvania.ELECTION TRAINING: The Pennsylvania Department of State announced Wednesday the launch of an election directors training team, the Capital-Star reports. The group will provide support and education for county election directors across the state ahead of this year’s primary and general elections. Last month, the state launched a task force focused on security threats to elections. 

Today's fourth top news story in Pennsylvania.LITTLE OVERSIGHT: Pennsylvania’s regulation of the private security industry remains “scant and scattershot,” gaps that have created an environment in which guards make up their own rules, work without licenses, and consider themselves private police, an Inquirer investigation found. 

Today's fifth top news story in Pennsylvania.PAY RAISE: An estimated 238 state workers received higher earnings than Gov. Shapiro last year, PennLive reports. A spokesperson with the Office of Administration said the big pay stems from many of those employees working in highly skilled occupations that require advanced degrees. Courts had the highest number of big earners, due to an automatic cost-of-living adjustment that kicked in last year. 
🤔 NEXT QUESTION: Were you paying attention to the news this week? Prove it with our latest news quiz: March Madness moment, Biden’s US Steel warning, and a 'sanctuary' city.
HOMEWORK OFFENSE: A Pennsylvania school district apologized after a backlash from a homework assignment that had students “pretend to be a white master looking to buy a slave,” WJAC reports.

MUSEUM MERGE: Several members of Congress supported legislation proposing a commission to consider integrating Philadelphia’s Jewish history museum with the Smithsonian. 

STADIUM STATUS: FNB Field, home of the Harrisburg Senators, is receiving a big upgrade. The project includes a new two-story building to serve as the team’s locker room and weight room.

PICKETT PURCHASE: Former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett’s spacious home in Cranberry is on the market for $2.7 million

BRACKET WATCH: March Madness is underway, and Gov. Shapiro is betting on coach John Calipari, a Pennsylvania native, to take Kentucky to the chip.


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