Content about Tom Corbett


I'm always amused when people get the precise government they asked for with their votes, and have to face the consequences.

A perfect example is the election of Tom Corbett as governor of Pennsylvania.

Only a few short months after the majority of Pennsylvania voters bought into Corbett's promises of balancing the state budget and cutting state spending, they're finding out that the way he's going to do that is by pushing the tax burden onto local government. Over all, each of us will end up paying more to maintain the same or fewer services than we now have.


The effects of legislative redistricting will be apparent in the May 20 primary election, and especially for voters in Avalon and Bellevue.

The two communities have been absorbed into the 20th Legislative District, which encompasses West View, parts of Ross Township, Brighton Heights and other areas of the North Side, as well as Lawrenceville. With the changes, the 20th District becomes less a City of Pittsburgh district and more evenly divided between the city and its closest suburbs to the north.


With less than two weeks until election day, voters in Pennsylvania's 16th Legislative District will have to set aside some time from the federal political onslaught to decide who they will send to the state House. In the district that includes only Bellevue of the North Boroughs municipalities, incumbent Democrat Robert Matzie is seeking re-election to a third term, challenged by Bellevue Council member Kathleen Coder, the Republican candidate.


At least a portion of Northgate School District’s full-day kindergarten program could be restored, thanks to a state grant that will provide some funding.

Northgate eliminated full-day kindergarten in budget cuts last month. The program had been funded by a state accountability block grant of nearly $200,000, funds that were drastically cut in Gov. Tom Corbett’s 2011-12 budget for Pennsylvania.


The proposed final budget that will be voted on by the Northgate School Board Monday night will not include an increase in property taxes. It also will not include full-day kindergarten, a spring musical or a number of classes that could be lost due to teacher furloughs.

Although the board will vote Monday to approve the final proposal for spending in 2011-12, that proposal will not become the final budget until the board votes on June 20.


"Everything is on the table."

That statement by Northgate superintendent Dr. Reggie Bonfield sums up the district's approach to doing whatever is necessary to eliminate a $1.6 million budget deficit facing the school in the coming fiscal year.

In an open letter to residents of Avalon and Bellevue that was posted on the district's Web site last week, Bonfield outlines the impact of Gov. Tom Corbett's proposed cuts in educational spending, which could add another $700,000 to the $900,000 deficit already faced by the district.


A room full of residents looking for answers to the Northgate School District’s financial problems didn’t get them at Monday’s school board meeting.

With no budget discussion on the agenda, the issue was left to the taxpayers who attended to stress their concerns over another proposed tax hike and what programs could be cut.

After last year’s 3.1 mill property tax increase, the district has requested permission from the state to increase taxes by another 2.5 mills for the coming year in an effort to mitigate a $1.3 million budget deficit.


The Avonworth School District will eliminate 15 aide positions in the next school year, the first step in budget cuts that could encompass an end to full-day kindergarten, salary freezes, and a request for voluntary concessions from union employees.


Northgate’s 2011-12 budget is “in deep trouble” after funding cuts in the proposed state budget threaten to add another $700,000 to the existing deficit.

Finance committee chairman Daniel O’Keefe said at Monday’s committee of the whole school board meeting that Gov. Tom Corbett’s proposed spending plan is expected to reduce Northgate’s reimbursements and state revenue by some $640,000 to $700,000.

Added to the previously projected deficit of approximately $900,000, the district now needs to make up between $1.3 million and $1.5 million.


An interstate drug trafficking ring based in Ohio Township was closed down last week when a state grand jury returned indictments against 12 men.

The investigation by the state Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigation was called “Operation Infamous Choppers” after the Camp Horne Road, Ohio Township business that served as the base for a drug ring that officials say brought some $2 million worth of marijuana from Mexico, by way of Arizona, to Western Pennsylvania.