Politics & Government

Casey Heads To Pennsylvania To Hammer Senate Health Bill

45 minutes ago
Alex Brandon / AP

Pennsylvania's Democratic Sen. Bob Casey is in the state hammering the Republican health care bill in the U.S. Senate.

Casey, speaking after a Friday rally in the Pennsylvania Capitol, warned that the bill would change society radically because the country will stop taking care of people who need it most.

Casey and others say Pennsylvania stands to lose more than many other states. Also against it are Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, Pennsylvania's hospitals, the Arc of Pennsylvania, the AARP of Pennsylvania and labor unions.

Science, Health & Tech

Jim Mone / AP

The state Department of Health granted a dozen licenses this week to companies that will grow and process medical marijuana in Pennsylvania. These twelve permittees have six months to become operational, which the state has yet to clearly define.

WESA's Liz Reid and The Incline's Sarah Anne Hughes discuss what Pennsylvanians can expect from medical marijuana in the state.

Identity & Justice

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The staff of the Pittsburgh Commission on Human Relations investigates allegations of discrimination throughout the city.

Carlos Torres was named the commission’s executive director in 2016.

90.5 WESA’s Margaret J. Krauss sat down with Torres to talk about his background and how individuals can make the city a better place.

Their conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

MARGARET J. KRAUSS: One of the things I noticed is that you're not shy about handing out your business card.

Virginia Alvino Young / 90.5 WESA

 

Last year, Hopewell Memorial Junior High School started noticing some negative race-based comments being made among students. Studies show safe environments are essential for learning, and being victim to identity-based harassment can be especially detrimental in school.

Education

Daveynin / Flickr

The office of the state auditor general has released a report reviewing Penn State’s rising tuition costs, background check practices and transparency in the wake of assistant coach Jerry Sandusky’s child sex abuse conviction.

Penn State is an important asset to Pennsylvania, and in his presentation of the report, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale repeatedly stressed the necessity of keeping its reputation intact.

In order to do that, he said PSU still has to improve its background checks in the post-Sandusky era—particularly for employees who have contact with kids.

Good Question!

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh's Lions: The Stony Eyes Watching Over Downtown

Walking down Fourth Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh, it might feel like you’re being watched. And you are. There are about a dozen pairs of eyes glaring down at the street. They’re made of gray and brown stone, some with intricate carved manes. Lions are a common sight on this stretch of downtown, and they have a very important job: to guard.

Read More

Development & Transportation

Joaquin Gonzalez / 90.5 WESA

A crowd of about 30 people gathered at the former Penn Plaza apartments in East Liberty on Thursday, where the development’s owners are tearing down the remaining building. They demanded the land be sold to the city of Pittsburgh and used to build tenant-owned affordable housing, chanting, “We are here to stand and fight, housing is a human right!”

Crystal Jennings, a member of the Penn Plaza Support and Action Coalition, was among the protesters pushing a clear message.

“LG, sell the property," she said. "Just do it.”

Arts, Sports, & Culture

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

On a weekday afternoon in Pittsburgh’s South Hills, a few dozen adults are standing within taped yellow boundaries, sneakers scuffing a gym floor, lobbing what looks like a bright green wiffleball back and forth over a short net with soft, square paddles.

Environment & Energy

EarthJustice

When  President Donald Trump’s proposed budget cut funding for environmental justice work at the EPA, Mustafa Ali took a stand. 

Economy & Business

Uber CEO Kalanick Resigns Under Investor Pressure

Jun 21, 2017
Evan Agostini/Invision / AP, File

Travis Kalanick, the combative and embattled CEO of ride-hailing giant Uber, has resigned under pressure from investors at a pivotal time for the company.

Uber's board confirmed the move early Wednesday, saying in a statement that Kalanick is taking time to heal from the death of his mother in a boating accident "while giving the company room to fully embrace this new chapter in Uber's history." He will remain on the Uber Technologies Inc. board.

Local Headlines

Matt Slocum / AP

Prosecutors in suburban Philadelphia plan to retry Bill Cosby after his two-week sexual assault trial ended Saturday in a mistrial, with the jury unable to reach a unanimous decision on any of the three counts. Cosby is accused of sexually assaulting a woman at his home near Philadelphia in 2004. The entertainer says what happened was consensual.

Some key things to know about the retrial:

___

WHEN WILL IT BE?

Allegheny County Police

A Pennsylvania judge has dismissed drug and weapons charges stemming from a 2013 case against two men who were later charged in an ambush at a Wilkinsburg cookout that killed five adults and an unborn child last year.

Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge David Cashman on Monday granted a dismissal request from defense attorneys for 29-year-old Cheron Shelton and 27-year-old Robert Thomas along with a third defendant in the drug case, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

Several Pennsylvania newspapers will be under new management this summer. 

GateHouse Media, a behemoth conglomerate overseen by New Media Investment Group, is slated to finalize purchase of The Beaver County Times, Ellwood City Ledger, The Bucks County Courier Times, The Intelligencer (Doylestown), the Burlington County (New Jersey) Times and Calkins Digital in June.

Food & Drink

Coca-Cola's marketing efforts during the weekend's heatwave in Pittsburgh backfired when the company mistakenly used a map of Philadelphia in a post on Twitter.

National & International

Less than a week after a judge declared a mistrial in the sexual assault case against Bill Cosby, his representatives say the comedian intends to host a series of town halls about sexual assault and the legal system.

Cosby spokesman Andrew Wyatt told the TV show Good Day Alabama that the town halls cold start as soon as next month, and noted the issues were particularly important for young athletes.

Stories from National Partners

There are some 320 million people in the US. Forty-three million of them were born abroad. More than 20 million immigrants are US citizens. About 11 million people are undocumented and more than 5.1 million children have one or more undocumented parents. Roughly 860,000 people have applied for temporary legal status because they were brought to the US as children without proper documentation. More than 500,000 people are waiting for their cases to be heard in immigration courts. Some 270,000 people in the US came as refugees.

90:90

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