March 31, 2023

Former New York Court of Appeals Judge Sol Wachtler once said any prosecutor could get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich. With those words in mind, we bring you the news that former President Donald Trump will be indicted in Manhattan, turning himself in as soon as next week. This event will either bring the former POTUS to justice or be the end of the republic (depending on which cable news network you choose to watch.) Or perhaps both.

Pennsylvania gained some unwanted national attention this week as some noodlebrain decided it would be a good idea to call in active-shooter warnings to a dozen schools. If this lunatic is located, we would simply recommend letting him or her either rot in prison, or as an alternative, be left alone in a room with all of the parents he or she terrified this week.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ plan to essentially take over Disney was put on ice when Disney lawyers pulled out some arcane legal tactics involving the heirs to King Charles and, for all we know, a can of Spam and a hacksaw. In any case, this is your reminder that you do not mess with the House of the Mouse.

Our U.S. senators have had just about enough of this train derailment nonsense, we learned this week. Bob Casey and John Fetterman have joined forces with the eternally-cranky Sherrod Brown of Ohio to pen new legislation that will help to keep train wheels where they belong. On train tracks.

We ask that you join us in keeping the people of Reading in your prayers as they deal with the aftermath of the R.M Palmer candy manufacturer explosion. Governor Shapiro has ordered all Commonwealth flags to be flown at half-staff in memory of the seven folks who lost their lives.

The House and Senate budget hearings continued apace, with the Department of Corrections in the hot seat. The inmate population is at its lowest number since 2001, a stark contrast to the 90s, when we were building prisons like Starbucks shops in every inch of the Commonwealth. You get a prison, you get a prison…

The Department of State also had its day in the sun, although the fireworks expected at that hearing never really materialized, leading many to opine that the fever dreams about the 2020 election may have finally broken. Or so we hope. Lots to get done on electoral reform in this state.

We pause to bring you the news that Governor Shapiro and his wife Lori recently held an Easter egg hunt at the Governor’s Residence, that timeless ritual where a giant rabbit terrorizes half the kids on the lawn. Good times!

In other news, Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate has ticked up to 4.4%, not exactly five-alarm fire stuff, but worth keeping your peeps on in the months ahead. Not THOSE peeps – your eyes, silly.

Some outfit that ranks things has Pennsylvania clocking in at number 26 on the list of “most innovation-friendly” states, whatever the hell that means. Kidding… we suspect it means we are kinda innovation friendly and a little innovation… hostile? In any case, Governor Shapiro’s office of Innovation and Technology has a job ahead.

Over in the Statehouse, freshmen Reps. Justin Fleming (D) and Thomas Kutz (R) have formed the Future Caucus in the hopes of reaching bipartisan consensus on big issues. Congratulations to both for stepping into the breach. We are here for it!

Out in Pittsburgh this week, Mayor Ed Gainey turned the nonprofit world on its collective ears by announcing he will start going after these folks for their fair share of the property tax pie. You may not have heard much about this issue yet, but trust us, you will. Eventually, the issue will find its way right into the General Assembly. It ain’t like Pittsburgh is the only place in the state that has huge swaths of non-taxable land.

Our Shameless Client Plugs of the week begin with our friends at Bald Birds Brewing, who announced the introduction of Dink, the official drink of Pickleball. Before you ask, “dink” is a type of lob shot used in pickleball, which we only know because we looked it up and not at all because we have ever played pickleball.

Continuing on the SCP theme, State Treasurer Stacy Garrity this week went down to York to visit another one of our valued clients, Precision Custom Components. Thank you, Treasurer Garrity, for spending time with us!

And for the hat trick, we give you those colorful folks at Crayola who, as we write, are celebrating National Crayon Day. Let’s all try to stay inside the lines!

This week marked 44 years since the partial meltdown at Three Mile Island. Did you know that four years before that, lawmakers were debating clusters of nuclear and coal “energy parks” that would have dotted the state? Well, now you do.

A big congratulations goes out this week to Philly’s Ashley Jordan, president and CEO of the African American Museum, who was named by President Joe Biden to serve on the National Museum and Library Services Board.

Over on the Triad Socials, swing on over and check out our own Mike Manzo’s state budget address playlist, lovingly composed under the giant Foo Fighters poster in his office!

In our We Can’t Make This Up segment, we head to Wisconsin. House cats can be such loving and goofy creatures, right? One day they bring you a dead squirrel or chipmunk and plop it at your feet, the next thing you know it’s a three-foot alligator skull. What will those rascals come up with next?

That’s what passes for news around here, as we say goodbye to March and hello to springtime in central Pennsylvania. POLLEN ALERT! From all your friends at Team Triad, have a great weekend!