AudioClick below to listen to audio clips of floor remarks, press conferences and my monthly Pennsylvania Moment radio program.
Swearing-in ceremonies were held today at the State Capitol for Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf of York County and Lt. Governor Mike Stack of Philadelphia who defeated incumbent Republicans Tom Corbett and James Cawley in the November election. Here’s more with Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa of Allegheny County who spoke on the Senate Floor following Lt. Governor Stack taking the Oath of Office.
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa says Pennsylvania state government has an online resource that can get people the help they need for everything from child care to mortgage problems to paying less in taxes.
Senate Democratic Leader Costa, along with Senate Democratic Appropriations Chair Sen. Vincent Hughes and Vice-Chair Sen. John Blake, said the $2 billion plus budget deficit disclosed at today’s Mid-Year Budget Briefing should be laid at the feet of Gov. Tom Corbett and his Republican legislative allies. Listen here to the Senate Democratic response to the administration’s briefing:
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa says a good way to get in the spirit of holiday giving is to help out your local food bank.
Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa of Allegheny County gives his reaction to incoming Republican Majority Leader Jake Corman’s comments about the possibility of a lame-duck session in early January to approve legislation before Gov. Corbett leaves office on January 20th. Here are Senator Costa’s comments:
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa says the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is now taking applications to help those who cannot afford to heat their homes this winter.
Lawmakers in Harrisburg have put new limits on how long the state will aid Pennsylvania’s financially-distressed cities. But Senator Jay Costa says Pittsburgh will lose under the new law.
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa says the state Department of Aging has a toll-free hotline anyone can call to get answers to questions about how to care for an aging loved one.
Pennsylvania Moment: The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) covers the health needs of all Pennsylvania’s children. Senator Costa says all parents should check to see if their children are eligible.
Senator Costa held a live Telephone Town Hall Meeting on September 4th, in which participants were able to ask questions as well as listen to a discussion about issues that are important to our area. You can listen here to the complete meeting.
Three members of the Senate Democratic Caucus including Senator Costa participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge today at the Allegheny County Courthouse in Pittsburgh. Here’s Senator Costa’s reaction to getting doused with ice cold water to help raise awareness about and money for ALS.
A police crime lab in Allegheny County has seen its state funding shrink to nothing over the past two years. Senator Costa says if the lab closes, the effects will be felt statewide.
Pennsylvania Moment- As students head back to college, Senator Costa reminds them — and their parents — to explore all the possibilities when it comes to paying for higher education.
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa tells senior citizens how they can get help paying for their prescriptions.
Senator Costa, the state Senate’s top Democrat, says Gov. Corbett should not hold Pennsylvania’s budget hostage to what he calls a “flawed” pension plan.
Senator Costa held a live Telephone Town Hall Meeting on June 10th. Participants were able to ask questions as well as listen to a discussion about issues that are important to our area.
Pennsylvania Moment: Sen. Costa advises Pennsylvania’s veterans to call the Veteran’s Hotline and check on the benefits they’ve earned.
As budget talks get underway at the state Capitol in Harrisburg, the state is looking at a one-billion dollar shortfall in revenue. Senator Costa says that will probably mean a leaner spending plan.
Pennsylvania Moment: Sen. Costa talks about PennDOT’s Yellow Dot program, designed to help both people with special medical conditions and first responders at an accident scene.
With the state looking at a possible 600 million dollar budget deficit by the end of the year, Senator Costa says Senate Democrats say they have a plan that would bring more than a billion dollars in new revenue and cost savings to the state.
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa says authorities can be alerted to child abuse by anyone anytime of the day or night.
More than 200 community college students and faculty rallied at the State Capitol today, urging Gov. Corbett and state lawmakers to provide an increase in funding in next year’s state budget. Here’s more with Senator Costa, who’s also a member of the Community College of Allegheny County’s Board of Trustees.
On the Senate floor, Senator Costa delivers a tribute to retiring University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Mark Nordenberg.
Pennsylvania Moment: Sen. Costa reminds you that March 31st is the deadline to sign up for health insurance provided by the federal Affordable Care Act.
Pennsylvania Senate and House Democrats are questioning Gov. Corbett’s state budget assertions and successes, and so today at a State Capitol news conference they unveiled a fact check website. Here’s more with Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa who says Gov. Corbett is distorting the facts and his record.
Pennsylvania Moment: Senator Costa says Pennsylvania’s Career Link offices can connect the unemployed to businesses that need workers.
Reports around the State Capitol say Gov. Corbett and some Republican legislative leaders are trying to come up with a new plan to privatize the state store system and beer sales. Here’s more with Senator Costa who, along with other Senate Democrats, says a better plan would be to modernize the way the state sells liquor.
Senate Democrats are applauding a Commonwealth Court ruling today that strikes down Pennsylvania’s Voter ID Law. Here’s more with Senator Costa, the Democratic Leader in the Pennsylvania Senate, who says the court was right to find the photo identification law unconstitutional.
Pennsylvania Moment: It’s never too early to begin saving for your child’s college education. Senator Costa says the state Treasury has a plan that can help now and in the future.