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Legislature

House passes ban on hand-held cellphone use while driving, but provision limits police
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-state/2020/01/15/House-passes-ban-on-hand-held-cellphones-driving-pennsylvania/stories/202001150167

After years of trying, Pa. House finally passes handheld cell phone ban
https://www.penncapital-star.com/criminal-justice/under-house-proposal-youll-pay-for-distracted-driving-but-cant-be-pulled-over-for-it/

Pa. House passes bill to strengthen penalties for not properly marking dams that can become ‘drowning machines’
https://www.pennlive.com/news/2020/01/pa-house-passes-bill-to-strengthen-penalties-for-not-properly-marking-dams-that-can-become-drowning-machines.html

State universities’ leader calls on lawmakers to ‘set this State System and more importantly, Pennsylvania up for success’
https://www.pennlive.com/news/2020/01/state-universities-leader-calls-on-lawmakers-to-set-this-state-system-and-more-importantly-pennsylvania-up-for-success.html

Suicide panel releases report on ways to address mental health issues
https://www.timesonline.com/news/20200115/suicide-panel-releases-report-on-ways-to-address-mental-health-issues

Bernstine’s bill reforming Sunshine Act unanimously passes House
https://www.timesonline.com/news/20200115/bernstines-bill-reforming-sunshine-act-unanimously-passes-house

Pa. corrections chief says smarter probation system would reduce prison population
https://www.pennlive.com/news/2020/01/pa-corrections-chief-says-smarter-probation-system-would-reduce-prison-population.html

House approves bill that would halt closure of White Haven, Polk centers
https://www.timesleader.com/news/769525/house-approves-bill-that-would-halt-closure-of-white-haven-polk-centers

Facing veto threat, Pa. House approves bill blocking Wolf from closing centers for the intellectually disabled
https://www.penncapital-star.com/civil-rights-social-justice/facing-veto-threat-pa-house-approves-bill-blocking-wolf-from-closing-centers-for-the-intellectually-disabled/

DOC recommendation to close SCI-Retreat draws criticism from local lawmakers
https://www.citizensvoice.com/news/doc-recommendation-to-close-sci-retreat-draws-criticism-from-local-lawmakers-1.2583641

DOC report recommends closing of SCI Retreat
https://www.timesleader.com/news/769488/doc-report-recommends-closing-of-sci-retreat-5

Retreat closure report draws strong reactions, mostly angry
https://www.timesleader.com/news/769555/retreat-closure-report-draws-strong-reactions-mostly-angry

Pa. Corrections officials recommend shuttering state prison in Luzerne County. But Gov. Tom Wolf will have the final word
https://www.penncapital-star.com/criminal-justice/pa-corrections-officials-recommend-shuttering-state-prison-in-luzerne-county-but-gov-tom-wolf-will-have-the-final-word/

DOC made up mind on future of SCI-Retreat
https://www.citizensvoice.com/opinion/doc-made-up-mind-on-futureof-sci-retreat-1.2583575

Treat suicide as emergency
https://www.thetimes-tribune.com/opinion/treat-suicide-as-emergency-1.2583602

Business

Pottstown keg maker got Trump administration to tax foreign rivals, then sells to German giant
https://www.inquirer.com/news/american-keg-trade-tariffs-imports-sale-german-chinese-20200115.html

Waterworks Giant Eagle among 1st to eliminate plastic bags
https://foxchapel.triblive.com/waterworks-giant-eagle-among-the-first-to-eliminate-plastic-bags/

Crime/Punishment

Authorities say man shot and killed at East Ken Manor in New Kensington
https://triblive.com/local/valley-news-dispatch/authorities-say-person-shot-and-killed-at-east-ken-manor-in-new-kensington/

Half of last year’s killings in Harrisburg went unsolved
https://www.pennlive.com/news/2020/01/half-of-last-years-killings-in-harrisburg-went-unsolved.html

Education

Head of national teachers union pledges support for Scranton teachers
https://www.thetimes-tribune.com/news/head-of-national-teachers-union-pledges-support-for-scranton-teachers-1.2583561

Abington Heights parents address school board about bullying at middle school
https://www.thetimes-tribune.com/news/abington-heights-parents-address-school-board-about-bullying-at-middle-school-1.2583767

A Chesco school district is in ‘a fight for our lives’ as students flock to charters
https://www.inquirer.com/education/coatesville-charter-schools-collegium-avon-grove-pennsylvania-costs-20200116.html

Cyber charters transformed my struggling kids. Why do Pa. politicians want to change my choice? | Opinion
https://www.inquirer.com/opinion/commentary/school-choice-cyber-charters-pennsylvania-20200116.html

This elementary school principal will do anything for his students, including cutting their hair | Jenice Armstrong
https://www.inquirer.com/columnists/warner-elementary-barber-shop-terrance-newton-jenice-armstrong-20200115.html

Elections/Politics

Killion’s seat a top target for Dems
https://www.dailylocal.com/news/local/killion-s-seat-a-top-target-for-dems/article_514d51ae-37d4-11ea-8473-8b9ed440281b.html

Small businesswoman, former teacher running for Republican state house nod
https://www.lehighvalleylive.com/elections/2020/01/small-businesswoman-former-teacher-running-for-republican-state-house-nod.html

‘You called me a liar,’ Warren told Sanders post-Iowa debate
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-nation/2020/01/16/Warren-Sanders-Iowa-presidential-debate-liar/stories/202001160119

Mike Bloomberg is getting a head start on the Pennsylvania Democratic primary with a huge hiring spree
https://www.inquirer.com/news/mike-bloomberg-2020-pennsylvania-primary-campaign-20200115.html

With Eye To Redistricting in 2021, National Group Targets PA Legislative Races
https://www.wesa.fm/post/eye-redistricting-2021-national-group-targets-pa-legislative-races#stream/0

Health Care

Allegheny Health Network expands partnership with Johns Hopkins to women’s health
https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/allegheny-health-network-expands-partnership-with-johns-hopkins-to-womens-health/

Excela granted Magnet status for nursing care
https://triblive.com/local/westmoreland/excela-granted-magnet-status-for-nursing-care/

Local News

Lackawanna County commissioners introduce tax-hike budget, passage in doubt
https://www.thetimes-tribune.com/news/lackawanna-county-commissioners-introduce-tax-hike-budget-passage-in-doubt-1.2583552

Domenick hired Doughton as confidential secretary in commissioners office
https://www.thetimes-tribune.com/news/domenick-hired-doughton-as-confidential-secretary-in-commissioners-office-1.2583551

Haverford’s decade-long battle to keep billboards off Lancaster Ave. and West Chester Pike returns to court
https://www.inquirer.com/news/billboards-haverford-bartkowski-investment-group-trial-20200116.html

Bucks community raises more than $50,000 for family a day after their house exploded
https://www.inquirer.com/news/buckingham-township-biddeford-circle-house-explosion-fundraiser-20200115.html

Delco moves forward on establishing a health department
https://www.delcotimes.com/news/local/delco-moves-forward-on-establishing-a-health-department/article_369fb994-37db-11ea-abb4-8f572967eba2.html

Bucks County preparing for new machines ahead of special election
https://www.buckscountycouriertimes.com/news/20200115/bucks-county-preparing-for-new-machines-ahead-of-special-election

Temple, Goodwill fire companies to be merged into Muhlenberg Township Fire Department
https://www.readingeagle.com/news/local/temple-goodwill-fire-companies-to-be-merged-into-muhlenberg-township/article_67fe840e-36cb-11ea-bef0-bba2fbae8215.html

$125K state grant to help Arnold bring back city administrator post
https://triblive.com/local/valley-news-dispatch/125k-state-grant-to-help-arnold-bring-back-city-administrator-post/

Temporary closing of Waller St. for Solomon Creek flood wall project
https://www.timesleader.com/news/769527/temporary-closing-of-waller-st-for-solomon-creek-flood-wall-project

Griffith says he’s being civil, but not the manager
https://www.timesleader.com/news/769521/griffith-says-hes-being-civil-but-not-the-manager

Roke sworn in as new Nanticoke police chief
https://www.citizensvoice.com/news/roke-sworn-in-as-new-nanticoke-police-chief-1.2583683

Deadline to reclaim stripmine in Tresckow pushed back to May
https://www.standardspeaker.com/news/deadline-to-reclaim-stripmine-in-tresckow-pushed-back-to-may-1.2583613

Homeless men still transported out of Beaver County
https://www.timesonline.com/news/20200115/homeless-men-still-transported-out-of-beaver-county

National News

Farmers could be biggest beneficiaries in new U.S.-China trade deal
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-nation/2020/01/15/Farmers-farming-agriculture-trade-US-China-deal-tariffs-intellectual-property/stories/202001150140

Steve Gleason receives the Congressional Gold Medal for his ALS work
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/nation/2020/01/15/Steve-Gleason-Congressional-Gold-Medal-ALS-former-Saints/stories/202001150192

Delaware General Assembly staffers want to form country’s first ‘partisan-inclusive’ legislative worker union
https://www.inquirer.com/jobs/labor/legislative-staff-union-delaware-general-assembly-afscme-20200115.html

Philly

Where the wild things park: Why so many cars in Philly park illegally
https://www.inquirer.com/real-estate/illegal-parking-south-philadelphia-cars-authority-tickets-20200116.html

Meet the woman whose new job is to help Philadelphia kids
https://www.inquirer.com/news/cynthia-figueroa-philadelphia-office-children-families-20200115.html

Philly deserves more answers on the shiny new plan to stop the shootings | Mike Newall
https://www.inquirer.com/news/columnists/mike-newall-philadelphia-gun-violence-focused-deterrence-larry-krasner-20200116.html

Facial-recognition scanners are coming to Philadelphia’s airport starting Tuesday
https://www.inquirer.com/news/philadelphia/philadelphia-international-airport-facial-recognition-face-scanners-biometric-technology-20200116.html

Mayor Kenney wants Philadelphia Museum of Art to revamp harassment policies after scandal involving former manager
https://www.inquirer.com/news/philadelphia-museum-of-art-scandal-jim-kenney-20200115.html

Source: Philly teen will be charged in the death of his foster mother and the killing of a 20-year-old man
https://www.inquirer.com/crime/east-germantown-philadelphia-woman-dead-police-mother-20200115.html

2 months of repairs needed for Old City water-main break
https://www.inquirer.com/news/water-main-break-third-arch-old-city-repair-20200115.html

Philly demonstrators demand remaining aid for Puerto Rico outside HUD offices
https://www.inquirer.com/news/philly-puerto-rico-protest-disaster-relief-aid-20200116.html

Solving Philly’s homeless problem is a human imperative | Editorial
https://www.inquirer.com/opinion/editorials/philadelphia-homeless-tents-housing-trauma-editorial-20200116.html

SEPTA unit chief promoted to top job amid FBI inquiry
https://www.witf.org/2020/01/15/septa-unit-chief-promoted-to-top-job-amid-fbi-inquiry/

Pitt

Meet Pittsburgh’s new development leaders who will refocus economic growth
https://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2020/01/15/pittsburgh-development-leaders-marty-lamar-greg-flisram-diamonte-walker-monique-pierre/stories/202001150126

Pittsburgh steering new development toward neighborhoods
https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/pittsburgh-steering-new-development-toward-neighborhoods/

Economic development in Pittsburgh must benefit people and neighborhoods, officials say
https://www.witf.org/2020/01/16/economic-development-in-pittsburgh-must-benefit-people-and-neighborhoods-officials-say/

Father and daughter sue feds over $82,000 seized at Pittsburgh International
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/crime-courts/2020/01/15/Father-and-daughter-sue-TSA-DEA-over-seized-82-000-pittsburgh-international-airport/stories/202001150141

Buyer’s market — Downtown office vacancies hit a 10-year high
https://www.post-gazette.com/business/development/2020/01/16/Downtown-pittsburgh-office-vacancies-10-year-high/stories/202001160102

Obituary: Olivia King Holt, a ‘ground-breaking’ woman who inspired children during segregation
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/obituaries/2020/01/15/Olivia-King-Holt-obituary-African-American-black-history-Camp-James-Weldon-Johnson/stories/202001150067

McDonald’s in Pittsburgh’s Strip District closes without explanation
https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/mcdonalds-in-pittsburghs-strip-district-closes-without-explanation/

State News

Groups are skirting Pa. law intended to protect children from abuse in wake of Penn State scandal
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/crime-courts/2020/01/16/penn-state-child-sex-abuse-laws-pa-volunteer-background-checks-boy-scouts/stories/202001160063

Activists crowd into DRPA headquarters demanding a probe of land deals
https://www.inquirer.com/business/camden-waterfront-norcross-drpa-land-supermarket-tax-credits-20200115.html

Pa. churches, nonprofits can get grants to improve security
https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pa-churches-nonprofits-can-get-grants-to-improve-security/

The results are in: Here’s who’s using medical marijuana in Pennsylvania, and why
https://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/the-results-are-in-heres-whos-using-medical-marijuana-in-pennsylvania-and-why/Content?oid=16564487

Transportation

Design phase begins for W-B Twp. intersection project
https://www.citizensvoice.com/news/design-phase-begins-for-w-b-twp-intersection-project-1.2583681

Washington

Lifting a gun ban: Federal law should have review process
https://www.post-gazette.com/opinion/editorials/2020/01/16/Lifting-a-gun-ban-Federal-law-should-have-review-process/stories/201912180071

Trump ‘knew exactly what was going on’ with Ukraine, Giuliani associate Parvas says
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/world/2020/01/15/Lev-Parnas-Rachel-Maddow-Trump-Ukraine-Giuliani-new-documents/stories/202001150196