Smart Talk

Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

Listen to Smart Talk live online from 9-10 a.m. weekdays and at 7 p.m. (Repeat of 9 a.m. program)

Host: Scott LaMar

STFriday: searching for campaign finance reports, building bridges and the Political Junkie

Written by Matt Paul, Reporter/Producer | Feb 28, 2014 7:21 AM

What to look for on Smart Talk Friday: 

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PennDOT hopes to rebuild some 500 bridges over the next six years through something the Rapid Bridge Replacement Program. The involvement of public-private partnerships, known as P3s around Harrisburg, is making such an ambitious goal possible.

Lancaster Newspapers' Gil Smart has been taking a closer look at what privatized bridges could mean for Pennsylvania, and he'll join us on Smart Talk Friday.

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Politial Junkie Ken Rudin

Also, WHYY's Dave Davies talks with our Mary Wilson about what he found in the campaign finance reports of Pennsylvania's gubernatorial candidates. He'll also discuss some apparent shortcomings in the Commonwealth's campaign finance online reporting system.

To say there are shortcomings in the state's municipal pension systems would be an understatement, according to PA Auditor General Eugene DePasquale. He started sounding the alarm, this week, by releasing a special report showing nearly $7 billion in underfunded liabilities across nearly 600 municipalities. DePasquale will go into detail about that new report with Mary Wilson.

Then Political Junkie Ken Rudin will provide his analysis of all the latest headlines -- including his ratings of the 36 gubernatorial contests on the ballot in 2014.

Listen to the program:

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  • Politics Watcher img 2014-02-28 09:46

    Thank you for covering campaign finance issues!

    Campaign finance abuses underlie nearly all of the problems facing America today.

  • Matt Paul img 2014-02-28 10:03

    PennDOT wanted to clarify two items from our conversation, this morning, on the "Rapid Bridge Replacement Program." Please check out the additional details below.

    Also, PennDOT Secretary Barry Schoch is scheduled to be on Smart Talk with Scott LaMar this coming Monday, so we'll be sure to continue the discussion then.

    People can see the teams who submitted statements of qualification on our website: http://www.dot.state.pa.us/Internet/pdNews.nsf/8c5bc4e349ab4db6852576c800678468/9727d3ca24040d3285257c7d007e30a9?OpenDocument.

    Also, the “adverse interest” part of the discussion was misleading. Adverse interest simply assures that private companies don’t have undue influence on our proposal-development process. And the assurances in this contract will be similar to those in any regular PennDOT contract.

  • Matt Paul img 2014-02-28 10:09

    An extra period on the end of that PennDOT link may be playing tricks on your browser. Try this one. Thanks!

    http://www.dot.state.pa.us/Internet/pdNews.nsf/8c5bc4e349ab4db6852576c800678468/9727d3ca24040d3285257c7d007e30a9?OpenDocument