The Northeast

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Pennsylvania State Order Embraces Artificial Intelligence

Sep 27, 20233 min read
The governor’s administration says the state should encourage the responsible use of artificial intelligence throughout its agencies, rather than turn a blind eye to its capabilities. Thus, a new executive order was born, Gov. Josh Shapiro said, which represents “the most comprehensive” action taken at the state level to incorporate AI programs.

GOP Presidential Candidates Prepare for Critical Second Debate Without Trump

Sep 26, 20236 min read
If Wednesday's second GOP presidential primary debate proves to be anything like the first, we're in for a night of political punches and maybe a rhetorical gang fight or two as the candidates look to score points in another Trump-less bout.

Poll Showing Biden Leading Trump by 6 Points – if Former President Is Convicted – Has DeSantis Backers Written All Over It

Sep 26, 20235 min read
A recent poll showing President Joe Biden ahead of Donald Trump in a 2024 rematch if the former president is convicted of the indictments he's facing was conducted by the pollster working with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis' super PAC.

State Aims for Smoother Online Hunting License Sales

Sep 26, 20232 min read
Although the launch of online hunting license sales started off rocky this year, the agency responsible says they have taken steps to improve the process.  Pennsylvania  Game Commission Executive Director Bryan Burhans acknowledged issues with rollout on June 26, but said he expected the process to be smoother in the future during a recent Senate Game and Fisheries Committee hearing.

Connecticut’s Indexed Minimum Wage Set to Rise in 2024

Sep 26, 20233 min read
Wages will rise for hundreds of thousands of low-skilled workers in Connecticut next year under a 2019 law that pegs the state's minimum wage to the federal employment index.  Beginning Jan. 1, Connecticut's wage floor will rise from $15.00 per hour to $15.69 per hour as a result of the state's first-ever economic indicator adjustment. 

Former Yale Student Accused of Rape Can Sue His Accuser for Defamation, Court Rules

Sep 24, 20232 min read
A former Yale student who was acquitted of rape in 2018, and later kicked out of the college, can sue his accuser for defamation over statements the accuser made during a school hearing, the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled in June, according to the New York Post. Saifullah Khan sued Yale in 2019 for $110 million, and has been attempting to bring his accuser into the lawsuit, according to the Post. The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled ruled that he can sue the accuser, and that she shouldn’t received “qualified immunity,” which prevents people from being sued over statements in judicial cases, from her testimony that Khan raped her in 2015.

Pittsburgh to Get Twice-a-Day Amtrak Service to New York

Sep 24, 20233 min read
Thanks to an agreement between Norfolk Southern and Amtrak — and a $200 million investment from the commonwealth — western Pennsylvania will have more passenger rail coming through Pittsburgh. On Friday, Gov. Josh Shapiro announced a passenger rail expansion for Amtrak’s New York City-Harrisburg-Pittsburgh service, going from once daily to twice daily.

Haley Lays Out Economic ‘Freedom Plan,’ Packed with Promises of Tax Cuts, Entitlement Reform and Regulatory Relief

Sep 23, 20235 min read
Declaring that it's time for Washington to start working for Americans and not the other way around, GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley laid out her economic "Freedom Plan in a speech Friday in New Hampshire. The former South Carolina governor and United Nations ambassador is proposing a litany of middle-class tax cuts, regulatory relief and "third rail" entitlement reforms in a proposal she asserts will check communist China aggression through American prosperity.

Pennsylvania Issues $1.6 Million Food Insecurity Grants

Sep 23, 20233 min read
State grants issued this week will help counties feed some of the 1.5 million residents facing food insecurity every day. On Tuesday, Gov. Josh Shapiro announced that $1.6 million will go to 40 food banks, pantries, shelters, and soup kitchens to make emergency meals easier to get in 26 counties. 

Pennsylvania Eyes Veterans Home Advisory Board

Sep 22, 20232 min read
A push to reform the oversight of Pennsylvania’s half-dozen homes for veterans would create an advisory board to improve care and watch over the dwellings. Senate Bill 933 would give a 15-member Veterans Home Advisory Board the responsibility to provide input on quality of care concerns for the more than 1,300 Pennsylvania veterans living in the six homes across the state.

Connecticut’s Indexed Minimum Wage to Rise in 2024

Sep 22, 20233 min read
Wages will rise for hundreds of thousands of low-skilled workers in Connecticut next year under a 2019 law that pegs the state's minimum wage to the federal employment index.  Beginning Jan. 1, Connecticut's wage floor will rise from $15.00 per hour to $15.69 per hour as a result of the state's first-ever economic indicator adjustment. 

Pennsylvania Special Election Tips State House to the Democrats

Sep 21, 20233 min read
A Democratic candidate has won a special election for a seat in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, retaining the party’s one-seat majority in the chamber. Lindsay Powell is a Democratic political aide who previously served as an aide to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries. On Tuesday, she won a special election to Pennsylvania’s state House District 21, which covers the suburbs of Pittsburgh, by a margin of 29% over Republican candidate Erin Authenreith according to results published by the Pennsylvania Department of State, which gives Democrats 102 seats to the Republicans’ 101.

Pennsylvania Launches ‘Automatic Voter Registration’ Plan Ahead of 2024

Sep 20, 20233 min read
Democratic Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro announced Tuesday that he will implement “automatic voter registration” ahead of the 2024 election. The governor rolled out his plan on National Voter Registration Day to “streamline” the voter registration process, which he argues will “save taxpayers time and money,” according to an announcement video. Shapiro’s plan will automatically enroll Pennsylvanians in the voting system, unless the individual opts out, when receiving an identification card or driver’s license at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

Pennsylvania’s Speed Camera Enforcement Laws Sunsetting Soon

Sep 19, 20234 min read
State lawmakers must act soon before a trio of authorizations expire for traffic cameras that capture drivers violating traffic laws. Provisions will soon kick in that would put an end to speed cameras in active work zones; camera-equipped school buses that ticket drivers who fail to yield to a stop sign; and speed cameras along Philadelphia’s Roosevelt Boulevard — one of the commonwealth’s most dangerous roads.

Innovation Hyper-Focused in Philly, Pittsburgh, State College

Sep 17, 20233 min read
Pennsylvania could become a national leader in innovation — if the support is there and state leaders embrace reform. “Innovation matters so much to economic performance, yet the state’s innovation drift is resulting in a broader economic drift,” Brookings Metro Senior Fellow Mark Muro told legislators Friday at a Senate Majority Policy Committee hearing on innovation. “We’re really challenging the state to, above all, commit to innovation…the state needs to try harder on this front. We think you could win — if you actually tried harder.”