PHIA News Digest – Vol. 2, No. 19

May 8, 2017

PDSITELOGO2Analysis concludes municipalities with own police force pay twice the tax burden

A new report by a Pennsylvania bipartisan think tank asserts police departments are a burden to municipalities with local departments while those who rely solely on state police may get a free ride.

The report by the Pennsylvania Economy League released last week focuses on Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposal to charge $25 per person to municipalities without police departments, the latest proposal in what has become an ongoing debate about who should bear the cost of police services throughout the commonwealth.

PennDOT Secretary Richards receives Peter Quinn Award

Pennsylvania Transportation Secretary Leslie S. Richards was given the Peter P. Quinn leadership award from the Greater Valley Forge (GVF) Transportation Management Association at a ceremony today in King of Prussia.

The Quinn award is given annually to recipients who have embodied his spirit of leadership and his belief of giving back selflessly in all that you do.  Quinn, the late founding director of GVF, worked in many different industries and leadership positions across the U.S. and throughout the world.

High-tech signals keep Monroeville-Murrysville traffic flowing

In the 30 years Shelley Earhart has lived in Monroeville and traveled U.S. Route 22, she doesn’t remember the commute being as easy as it has been over the past two years.

Traffic on Route 22 is running a whole lot smoother thanks to a $2 million traffic signal project that can think on the go — with the help of some very complicated algorithms.

Some of Pa.’s wealthiest communities get state police coverage at no cost

About half of communities home to 21 percent of the state’s residents don’t have their own police force, instead relying on state troopers.

For years, there have been complaints that this setup is unfair and proposals to address the issue — to no avail. A new study’s put hard numbers on the long-term effects of this setup.

PEL exposes police myths

Critics respond with a myth to Gov. Tom Wolf’s plan to assess a fee on local governments that refuse to hire their own police and rely on state police, for free. Poor rural communities, they say, are low-crime, sparsely populated areas that simply can’t afford to pay for police.

A new report by the Pennsylvania Economy League, part of a larger study to assess the financial condition of local governments statewide, destroys that myth and makes a powerful case for assessing fees far higher than the modest $25-per-resident charge proposed by Wolf.

Gov. Wolf, PennDOT announce $200 million in road improvements in Dist. 9

Gov. Tom Wolf and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation announced today that over $200 million in highway and bridge improvements that will take place across PennDOT’s six-county District 9 region during the 2017 construction season. The counties are Bedford, Blair, Cambria, Fulton, Huntingdon and Somerset.

Rebuilding I-83 around Harrisburg means a decade or more of construction

Over the next decade-plus the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will undertake a $1 billion rebuilding of much of the eastern Capital Beltway.

In a series of projects — one right after the other — the department will rebuild and widen much of Interstate 83 in the Harrisburg area, a massive undertaking the likes of which the region hasn’t seen in almost 20 years.


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