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Government reform group calls Pennsylvania legislature “dysfunctional”

Fairs District PA criticizes rules and legislative leaders for lack of productivity
By Scott LaMar/WITF

What to know about Shapiro’s pitch to legalize marijuana, its chances in the Pa. legislature, and more

Unlike his predecessor, Gov. Josh Shapiro has the benefit of a Democratic-led state House and a state Senate where attitudes appear to be shifting.

By Stephen Caruso/SpotlightPA and Kate Huangpu/Spotlight PA

Utility shut-off protections in Pa. would be expanded to summer months under bill

The legislature must reauthorize a law that shields people from winter utility shut-offs before the end of the year. That’s spurred a debate between consumer advocates and utilities about additional protections.

By Stephen Caruso/SpotlightPA

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Relief for abuse survivors, other constitutional amendments halted in Pa.’s split legislature

Deep partisan differences are keeping proposals with bipartisan support from voters, including one that would give survivors of childhood sexual abuse a chance to sue their abusers.

By Kate Huangpu/Spotlight PA

A group of Pa. lawmakers didn’t take pay during the budget impasse. A bill would force all to abstain.

A bill would make it mandatory for Pennsylvania lawmakers to forego pay during a budget impasse. At least one member says it could force votes for the wrong reason.

By Stephen Caruso/SpotlightPA

School funding, permitting at top of Pa. legislature’s 2024 agenda

Looming over the legislature is a nearly year-old court ruling that declared the state’s education funding system to be unconstitutionally inequitable and ordered lawmakers to correct it.
By Katie Meyer/Spotlight PA

Why the Pennsylvania legislature is off to a slow start in 2024

The legislature will be temporarily unable to grapple with major issues such as a far-reaching court ruling on how the state funds public education or its outdated Election Code.

By Stephen Caruso/SpotlightPA

A long budget impasse and partisan standoffs dominated the Pa. legislature in 2023

Members of the divided Pa. legislature acknowledge that they had a slow start and deep divisions remain. But after finishing the budget and passing bipartisan bills, they predict a smoother 2024.

By Stephen Caruso/SpotlightPA and Kate Huangpu/Spotlight PA