Late breaking news: Micozzie Amendment fails 98-103, PA Transportation in limbo

The Micozzie Amendment, which was the House’s compromise plan to fund transportation in Pennsylvania, was defeated 98-103 at 9:52pm tonight. Word from livebloggers in the gallery in Harrisburg is that moderates from both parties voted aye, while staunch union backers on the left of the Democratic caucus teamed up with anti-everything members of the Republican …

Transportation bill on the floor of the Pennsylvania House

We’ve been baited and promised and jerked around continuously since September, but with debate now underway and hours in, a vote on a transportation package seems genuinely imminent tonight. The bill under discussion is a $2.3 billion/year plan, with $1.65 billion going to roads and bridges, and $497 million for transit and $144 million for …

Bridgeport viaduct reopens today as capital funding becomes grave crisis

It is 4:45am. The first northbound Norristown High Speed Line (NHSL) train in revenue service is about to cross the Bridgeport viaduct into Norristown, ending a four month closure for critical repair work. NHSL Norristown riders can breathe a sigh of relief, with cumbersome shuttle busing no longer part of their daily routine. But as …

Ted Cruz, you asshole

Overview: “NEC FUTURE is a comprehensive planning effort to define, evaluate and prioritize future investments in the Northeast Corridor (NEC), launched by [the FRA] in February 2012. …NEC FUTURE will create a framework for the future investments needed to improve passenger rail capacity and service through 2040…” Public Meetings: “Open House Meetings, October-November 2013 – …

…and a third group expects a joke about binary numbers

I am extraordinarily well-lubricated tonight, having been to both an author interview with Fortune‘s Leigh Gallagher and the Inquirer‘s Inga Saffron, and then Philly Nerd Nite with presentations by SEPTA and MOTU. I have been up many hours, so I won’t be writing things up tonight, but I did want to leave one thought before …

Council looking to raise PPA permit fees from negligible to trifling

After three years of never needing one because I lived in Point Breeze, last week I trekked down the Broad Ridge Spur to the Philadelphia Parking Authority’s new Customer Service Center, to apply for a Residential Parking Permit. The lady behind the window was very confused; my block doesn’t actually have permit parking, but Girard …

You’re out of your element! This Leninist is not the issue.

Good morning, and for those who are observing it, may you have an easy Shutdown. Out-of-town tourists who were really counting on seeing Valley Forge and Independence Hall might want to stop in at attractions that aren’t National Parks, which is most everything that isn’t either on 5th Street or a Revolutionary Battlefield. Since I …

The math of SB1: Pick up your damn phone

OK, this post is now 48 hours overdue, but mostly because I have no idea what is going on with Majority Leader Turzai’s sudden move to bring the SB1 transportation funding bill to the floor of the House. And as far as I can tell, nobody who knows is talking. But here’s what I do …

Weekend Update

Happy weekend! Pennsylvania’s SB1 Transportation funding bill may be back from the dead; I’ll have more by tomorrow morning, or you can look in on the Pittsburgh Comet or Keystone Politics for the fast update, or if you’ve forgotten what SB1 actually does, there’s the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from June. Meanwhile, we have a big weekend …

Act 44: Part 0: I DO NOT WANT your filthy money

To open the series on replacing Act 44, I feel I should put my cards on the table as to what my political goals are, as framing for readers. I am keeping liberal/conservative, Republican/Democratic politics out of this as much as I can, because I feel that they mostly contribute noise and bias versus signal, …