Sunday, May 24, 2015

POSTED: Wednesday, May 20, 2015, 6:15 PM

Gov. Wolf has appointed a top aide's former law partner to an influential position on the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge commission.

Wadud Ahmad, a partner in the Philadelphia-based law firm of Ahmad Zaffarese, was tapped last week by Wolf to sit on the commission, which has since made him its vice-chair. The commission oversees 20 bridges over the Delaware River linking Pennsylvania and New Jersey (7 toll bridges and 13 toll-supported bridges), a $54 million operating budget, as well as millions of dollars in construction, architectural, legal and bond work, among other contracts.

Angela Couloumbis @ 6:15 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, May 18, 2015, 9:32 PM


Gov. Wolf's chief of staff thinks legislators are trying to a pull a fast one by limiting pension benefits for everyone but themselves.

Katie McGinty was not shy about making that point when she spoke at the monthly press club luncheon in Harrisburg Monday.

Angela Couloumbis @ 9:32 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, May 11, 2015, 5:51 PM

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane has given her new chief of staff authority over personnel decisions, according to documents, effectively giving him jurisdiction over the two women who reported he made unwanted sexual advances toward them.

In an e-mail last week, Jonathan Duecker, who Kane promoted to the high-profile post last month, informed colleagues that he will now oversee hiring (and, presumably, firing) decisions, yanking that responsibility away from Kane's first deputy, Bruce Beemer.

Angela Couloumbis @ 5:51 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, May 11, 2015, 1:57 PM

It's a new two-year session, and Pennsylvania's Women's Health caucus is back with a lengthy list of bills aimed at strengthening women's rights.

The proposed measures would affect pregnant, nursing and working mothers, as well as victims of domestic violence, the caucus' co-chairs said Monday.

Angela Couloumbis @ 1:57 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Wednesday, May 6, 2015, 6:51 PM

It’s as though a gallon of bleach was poured over a year's worth of financial disclosure forms.

After years of accepting tickets to sporting events and galas, trips to exotic locales (for government business of course) and other freebies at the expense of third parties, Pennsylvania lawmakers turned in largely squeaky clean score cards for 2014.

Angela Couloumbis and Ben Finley @ 6:51 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, May 4, 2015, 6:04 PM

Pennsylvania got some good news Monday - the state's Independent Fiscal Office reported a bump in revenue over earlier projections after April's monster tax collection month.

Think $594 million above estimate.

Angela Couloumbis @ 6:04 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Wednesday, April 29, 2015, 5:36 PM
Filed Under: Anglea Couloumbis
Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane explains a point to a reporter in March 2014. ( MICHAEL BRYANT / Staff Photographer )

The leak case against Attorney General Kathleen Kane is costing more than just time and reputations.

It’s also costing money.

The state Attorney General’s office has paid just over $40,000 to private law firms to represent employees who were summoned to testify in the leak investigation, records show.

Angela Couloumbis @ 5:36 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Tuesday, April 21, 2015, 10:12 PM

The seventh time may be the charm for embattled Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane, who this week hired yet another spokesman after losing a line of top press aides.

Chuck Ardo, former spokesman to Gov. Ed Rendell, said Tuesday that Kane will hire him under a six-month contract. He becomes the seventh person to serve in that position, with the last two press aides resigning with only weeks on the job.

Angela Couloumbis @ 10:12 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
About this blog

Commonwealth Confidential gives you regularly updated coverage of the state legislature, the governor and the workings of the state bureaucracy. It is written by Angela Couloumbis in the Inquirer's Harrisburg bureau, based in the statehouse, and by the newspaper's far-flung campaign reporters.



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