WEATHER: Philadelphia, p.m. thunderstorms, high of 86; Harrisburg, partly cloudy, high of 87; Pittsburgh, scattered thunderstorms, high of 82.
NEW FROM CITY & STATE PA:
NEW THIS MORNING:
* Colleagues praised Philadelphia’s new interim DA Kelley Hodge as hardworking and honest, the Inquirer writes.
* House Republicans left a weekend session in Harrisburg without taking any votes, the Post-Gazette reports.
* A bill from state Rep. Bryan Cutler would double fines for violating state lobbying rules, according to LancasterOnline.
* Fair districting advocates picketed several NEPA lawmakers, the Times-Tribune writes.
* Plan Philly checks in on the progress of Mayor Jim Kenney’s historic preservation task force.
THE PUBLIC LOSES IF ‘COMPETING’ CASINOS CAN HAVE SAME PRINCIPAL OWNERS
Philadelphia Inquirer Editorial Board (07/12/17): “More gambling and fewer restrictions is a losing bet. Pennsylvania had good reasons to limit casino ownership when the law was written; those reasons haven’t changed.” Allowing concentrated ownership in multiple casinos is bad for competition and growth in Pennsylvania. Removing ownership restrictions puts "the casino industry’s interests above the public’s," and is only meant to enable one casino owner's "already considerable wealth and power": Watche Manoukian. Learn more: bit.ly/2tgiPqn
FROM THE WEEKEND:
* PA House Speaker Mike Turzai has been blamed for upending fragile budget talks with a new plan to prevent tax increases and cut major government expenditures, the Inquirer reports.
* Soda tax advocate and billionaire Michael Bloomberg is funding pro-tax commercials in Philadelphia, WHYY writes.
* Brandywine Realty, one of the Philadelphia region’s biggest developers, will move its HQ to Center City, according to the Business Journal.
* The Inquirer profiled David T Jones, the man who will lead Philadelphia's fight against opioid addiction.
* A PA Supreme Court ruling found the state’s sex offender registry laws were unduly punitive, the Post-Gazette writes.
* Temple and other state-related universities are missing hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue due to the state budget impasse, WHYY writes.
* In a bid to balance higher ed funding, PA’s state-owned schools may abandon their single tuition rate policy, according to the Post-Gazette.
* SEPTA will shake up its bus strategy after years of losing riders to services like Uber and Lyft, the Inquirer writes.
* Highmark, one of PA’s biggest and only remaining insurance providers, announced it will seek a double-digit rate increase for ACA participants to recoup millions in losses, the Post-Gazette reports.
* Chris Goy, policy director to Philadelphia City Council President Darrell Clarke, was selected as one of the Daily News’ 2017 Singles.
Join City & State PA and WHYY for the tastiest event of the summer!
City & State PA and WHYY are excited to announce the inaugural Politics of Food. Taking place on July 25, this event will bring together some of the most influential names in dining, politics and policy to discuss the future of issues like feeding vulnerable populations and the future of urban farming. Following the panels, attendees will enjoy offerings from the region’s top restaurants, distillers and brewers, including Misconduct Tavern, Roy Pitz Brewing, The Trestle Inn and more.
* The Daily News is livid that the gas tax being discussed by state GOP leaders as a way to close the budget deficit would be on consumers, not drillers.
* The Standard-Speaker wants to see the state budget process move to a two-year cycle occurring on odd years so that the process won’t be influenced as much by election considerations.
* The Citizens’ Voice uses the Penn State and Kathleen Kane grand juries as evidence that PA Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas Saylor’s grand jury reform commission is a good idea.
* The Post-Gazette rejects a proposal by The League of Women Voters of Greater Pittsburgh and Vote Allegheny to create an election commission when the county already has a Board of Elections.
* The Observer-Reporter worries about the impact on Washington’s economy following the collapse of a landmark building on the city’s Main Street.
* The Citizen finds the future of solar energy may run through a Philadelphian’s installation company.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY: PA Rep. Michael O’Brien … Want to wish someone a happy birthday in our newsletter? Email us their name, job title and upcoming birthday at firstname.lastname@example.org
* The Philadelphia Foundation has announced grants totaling $85,000 from its East Mount Airy Neighbors Community Fund to ten nonprofit organizations serving northwest Philadelphia, writes Philanthropy News Digest.
* Politicians are once again trying to make the Susquehanna River region a National Heritage Area, using the nonprofit Susquehanna Heritage Corporation to lead the way, writes LancasterOnline.
* Generocity spotlights two new fellowship opportunities for Philadelphia-area charity- and civic-minded individuals.
Submit your nomination for City & State PA’s 2017 “50 Over Fifty Awards”: Honoring Pennsylvania Leaders Over the Age of 50!
City & State PA will honor 50 of the most prominent and accomplished leaders in government, business and media over the age of 50 who continue to make a positive impact on Pennsylvania through their achievements, leadership abilities, philanthropic efforts and dedication to the betterment of the commonwealth!
To be eligible, nominees must be a Pennsylvania resident and must be at least 50 as of January 1, 2017.
To submit a nomination, click here.
Deadline: August 21, 2017 at 6 p.m.
11:30 a.m. - Gov. Wolf will tour and host a discussion at Adaptimmune Therapeutics. 351 Rouse Boulevard, Philadelphia.
To have your events included in Today’s Sked, please email information to email@example.com.
KICKER: “I think he’s in a box now...I don’t know what the endgame is.” – Rep. John Taylor on Speaker Turzai’s iffy gambit to take the reins in ongoing budget negotiations. From the Inquirer.