Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Highlights from the Governor's Budget Address

Governor Wolf gave his state budget address this morning, and it includes increases and changes to many programs. Here are some highlights, and below you can find a chart detailing some line items we found interesting/important. Tell us if there are other line items you want to see in the comments, or find them here.

Education:
  • Pre-K, public schools, public universities, community colleges, and the state system of higher education will all receive increased funding. 
    • According to the Governor's budget address, the state share of public funding will be 50%.
    • Governor Wolf also called on all institutions of higher education to freeze tuition
Taxes:
  • A new severance tax will be tied to education funding. It is projected to bring in $1B in revenue each year.
  • The personal income tax will go up to 3.7%, and the sales tax will go up to 6.6% and will include "include services that currently are not taxed because special interest groups have lobbied for special exemptions."
  • The budget also cuts the corporate net income tax rate by 40 percent in the first year and 50 percent by 2018.
  • As of January 2016, Capital Stock and Franchise Tax will be phased out. 
  • A new line item will transfer $2.1 B to property tax relief.
Economy:
  • Governor Wolf is calling for a minimum wage increase to $10.10/hour.
Health:
  • As expected, Governor Wolf proposes that Pennsylvania become a Medicaid Expansion state, which would give the state access to funding under the Affordable Care Act.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Webinar: Know Your Rights - Employment Protections for Pregnant Workers

Pregnant profile IIIFrom our friends at the U.S. Department of Labor Women's Bureau, Region 3
The U.S. Department of Labor Women's Bureau and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will host an online webinar on employment protections for pregnant workers. Speakers will include Lucia Bruce, Regional Administrator for the U.S. Department of Labor Women's Bureau, Regions 3 and 4, and Mary Tiernan, Program Analyst for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Click here to receive the webinar log-in information.

Friday, February 13, 2015

We Won Because of You

It's been a long road, but together, we did it.

Yesterday morning, Philadelphia City Council passed an earned sick days bill with a vote of 14-2. And this afternoon, Mayor Nutter signed it into law. Philadelphia is now the 17th city to pass earned sick days.

Thanks to your hard work and dedication, 200,000 workers will be able to start earning the time they need to care for the families they love.

Please take a moment to share your support for earned sick days using social media with the hashtag #PHLSickDays. And then take one more moment to thank the Councilmembers who voted yes and the Mayor who signed it into law.

We are looking forward to working with you as the new bill rolls out. Please keep an eye on www.phillyearnedsickdays.com and let us know how you think people can learn more about the bill by emailing us at policy@pathwayspa.org.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Join Us for the #PHLSickDays Vote this Morning!

This is the last morning people in Philadelphia will wake up without a #PHLSickDays law on the books.

Join us at City Hall starting at 9:45 for our press conference followed by the City Council session.

If you can't be there in person, you can listen to the Council session on 900 WURD or watch at http://vp.telvue.com/preview?id=T01340&video=40960.

Thank you to everyone who made today possible! Check back on Twitter at @Earnedsicktime for updates throughout the day!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Letters: Vets' 'Sniper'-like post-combat lives

American-flag-2aThis was written by Clay Fitch, Senior Grantwriter at PathWays PA. For the full article, please visit http://bit.ly/1DjeVtg.

LAST MONTH the movie "American Sniper" opened nationwide with a record box office of $90 million, shattering previous box-office records for January releases. Since its release some controversy has surrounded the movie, and much of the coverage of the movie lately has been related to these controversies.

What is lost in this coverage, and much of the discussion of the movie, is the very real depiction of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle's struggles with transitioning to civilian life.

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Kyle's struggles are not fiction, nor are they unique. There are thousands of veterans across the Greater Philadelphia region who have come home from serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, or even stateside, who are now facing the challenges of transitioning to life as a civilian, including gaining civilian employment.

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Veterans often benefit from support in negotiating these multiple transitions. Programs like PathWays PA's HeroesPath - offering veterans a single point of contact and "no wrong door" approach to accessing education, job training, public benefits and key supportive services - play a critical role in ensuring a successful transition. HeroesPath provides veterans with customized, comprehensive guidance through the transition into civilian life and employment.

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Read the full article at http://www.philly.com/philly/opinion/20150205_Letters__Vets___Sniper_-like_post-combat_lives.html