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|In today's edition: 'Broken system,' Israel law, House business, Kim's campaign, primary fail, speaker plans, and candy economics.|
Potter County residents who fought against a planned oil and gas wastewater well there say the system for doing so is broken in Pennsylvania.
Roulette Oil & Gas withdrew its application for the injection well in September (the exact reason is unclear) after pushback from community members worried about groundwater pollution and other health risks.
But opponents, while celebrating the outcome, say their experience with state regulators confirmed the deck was stacked against them and that changes are needed to give other communities statewide a fighting chance.
Read Spotlight PA's full report: This rural township wants to make it easier for other places in Pennsylvania to fight injection wells.
THE CONTEXT: Residents and officials in Clara Township, site of the proposed injection well, say they weren't informed of the plan as required and had to push for a public meeting with little time to weigh in.
Now they're calling for the state's public hearing process to be made more proactive and less reactive, and for companies to be required to notify local governments at least 30 days before applying for a permit.
The changes would make it easier for other communities statewide to mount challenges against injection wells as more companies turn to the disposal method amid the energy industry's "toxic wastewater reckoning."
Read more, via Inside Climate News: Answers about old gas sites repurposed as injection wells may never be fully unearthed.
|NOTABLE / QUOTABLE|
"If nothing else, they have really crystallized in Americans’ minds how important [it is] electing judges and judges who share your values to these courts that will either protect those rights or will scale those rights back."
—Democratic Pennsylvania Supreme Court candidate Daniel McCaffery on the role the conservative-led U.S. Supreme Court is playing in his race
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» VOTER READY: Join us Thursday, Nov. 2 from 6-7 p.m. ET via Zoom for a free Q&A on voting rights in Pennsylvania, important dates and deadlines, and answers to your remaining Election Day questions. Register for the event here and submit your questions to email@example.com.
» RESULTS REVIEW: Join us, the New Pennsylvania Project, and Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts on Thursday, Nov. 16 from 6-7 p.m. for a Q&A on the election results. Register for the event here and submit your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Leaf peeping from the water at Gifford Pinchot State Park, via Ed G. Have a Pennsylvania photo to share? Send it to us by email, use #PAGems on Instagram, or tag us @spotlightpennsylvania.
|ANTI-BDS: Pennsylvania’s House and Senate this week passed resolutions supporting Israel as Democratic Gov. Josh Shapiro reiterated his support following criticism of earlier remarks. Under Gov. Tom Wolf, Pennsylvania adopted a law preventing state contracts with businesses that participate in the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel. Elsewhere, anti-BDS measures spurred free speech concerns and a failed push to the U.S. Supreme Court.|
HIGHER OFFICE: Six-term state Rep. Patty Kim (D., Dauphin) has launched a 2024 bid for state Senate. Kim will seek the seat currently held by state Sen. John DiSanto (R., Dauphin), one made more attainable for Democrats in the last round of redistricting. Kim said she will not concurrently run for reelection to the state House. DiSanto has not confirmed whether he’s seeking reelection to the state Senate.
- RELATED: Protesters march on John Fetterman's Philadelphia office after senator's pro-Israel remarks, via @MaxMMarin.
PRIMARY LIMBO: State Senate Majority Leader Joe Pittman (R., Indiana) said a new 2024 primary date approved by the state House this week was too little, too late, per Capital-Star, once again stopping a monthslong push to avoid a scheduling conflict with Passover. If the date doesn't change, Jewish poll workers and in-person voters could be forced to choose between civic duty and religious law.
WAITING LIST: U.S. Rep. Dan Meuser (R., Pa.) has added his name to a list of House Republicans considering a bid for speaker if Jim Jordan abandons his, Politico's Olivia Beavers reports. Jordan, a Republican from Ohio, placed his bid on hold Thursday (then revived it) after two failed votes. The Inquirer (paywall) reports he also lost the vote of one member of Pennsylvania's GOP delegation along the way.
|BALLOT CURES: Lancaster County voters who requested a mail ballot before Oct. 5 and believe they may have made a mistake due to faulty secrecy envelope instructions will be allowed to double-check, via WGAL.|
BUS CAMS: Schools are using cameras to catch motorists who illegally pass stopped school buses after a 2020 law made it possible, PennLive (paywall) reports. Fines are $300 — $250 of it going to the district.
- RELATED: Error discovered with 400 York County mail ballots; affected voters instructed to destroy the duplicates, via FOX43.
OUT ON BAIL: Victor Perez is back at the helm of Hazleton aid organization Dominican House after being charged with shooting a local newspaper publisher who printed unflattering caricatures of him, per WFMZ.
CANDY-WEALTH: Pennsylvania has the fourth largest candy economy in the country, York Daily Record reports, via Yahoo. In case you're wondering: Vermont claimed the number one spot.
FOUL BALLS: With Game Four of the Phillies playoff series getting underway at 8 tonight, The Inquirer's Stephanie Farr explains why the team's favorite profane gesture is "crass, supportive, and perfectly Philly."
|🏆 HARD QUESTIONS: Did you stay on top of Pennsylvania news this week? Prove it with the latest edition of The Great PA News Quiz: Big election, pro-Israel donors, opioid billions, and a year on strike.|
Unscramble and send your answer to email@example.com. We'll shout out winners here, and one each week will get some Spotlight PA swag. Answers submitted by 5:30 p.m. on issue date will be counted
A B F N L T Y A M O
Yesterday's answer: Perfunctory
Congrats to our daily winners: Vicki U., Barbara F., Susan D., Tracy S., Don H., Dan A., Stacy S., Jon W., Ted W., Sharon B., Kevin H., Bob C., Jodi R., Richard A., Jane R., Joel S., David W., Becky C., Dennis M., Marie B., Tom M., William Z., James B., Susan N.-Z., Daniel M., Stanley J., and Wendy A.