Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Candidate Seeking Democratic Endorsement Was Registered Republican Prior To Run

Pittsburgh mayoral candidate Tony Moreno says he expected his social-media history -- which as Pittsburgh City Paper and WTAE have reported includes years-old Tweets supporting Donald Trump and castigating Democrats -- would come back to haunt him. He was, he said, being “bombastic” in an effort to voice his anger over the state of politics.

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Politics & Government

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh mayoral candidate Tony Moreno says he expected his social-media history -- which as Pittsburgh City Paper and WTAE have reported includes years-old Tweets supporting Donald Trump and castigating Democrats -- would come back to haunt him. He was, he said, being “bombastic” in an effort to voice his anger over the state of politics. 

Top PA Senator Appoints Colleague's Wife To Lucrative Gaming Control Board Seat

13 hours ago
Kent M. Wilhelm / Spotlight PA

The top Republican in the Pennsylvania Senate has quietly appointed the spouse of a colleague to a coveted spot on the state’s Gaming Control Board, raising questions anew about whether the regulatory panel has become a lucrative landing ground for the politically connected.

Jared Murphy / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny County Council could vote as soon as next week on a proposal to mandate paid sick leave at workplaces across Allegheny County.

Science, Health & Tech

Matt Rourke / AP

COVID-19 case numbers are no longer declining in Allegheny County. The Health Department said Wednesday that the seven day average number of new cases was 170, up from 155 last week.

States Rapidly Expanding Vaccine Access As Supplies Surge

Mar 3, 2021
Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Buoyed by a surge in vaccine shipments, states and cities are rapidly expanding eligibility for COVID-19 shots to teachers, 55-and-over Americans and other groups as the U.S. races to beat back the virus and reopen businesses and schools.

Min Xian / WPSU

As the COVID-19 vaccine rolls out unevenly in Pennsylvania, Elk County is a leader in administration of shots. The rural county ranks second in the rate of fully vaccinated residents in the commonwealth, according to the Department of Health’s dashboard Tuesday. 

Education

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania is aiming to vaccinate roughly 200,000 public and private school employees against the coronavirus by no later than mid-April.

Emma Lee / WHYY

The state Department of Education told state legislators at a budget hearing Monday that it is working to help school districts address their post-pandemic challenges – and it’s asking for more money to do it.

Good Question!

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Why Does Frick Park Have Fire Hydrants?

Frick Park’s 644 acres include extensive hiking trails, hundreds of species of wildlife and old fire hydrants that seem out of place. As stir-crazy Pittsburghers take advantage of the city’s many green spaces, Good Question! askers took notice of the peculiarly-placed manmade objects.

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Identity & Justice

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

It’s illegal to drive all-terrain vehicles and dirt bikes on city streets. But Pittsburgh Police claim last summer large groups were often roving through neighborhoods. Now local law enforcement is vowing to, “Put an end to these dangerous and disruptive ride-outs in the city.”

90.5 WESA

Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Anthony Mariani was sued in federal court Tuesday for allegedly barring volunteer court observers from virtually attending hearings in his courtroom.

Development & Transportation

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The Port Authority of Allegheny County is on a quest to build a transit system that is equitable, sustainable and improves people’s lives. A new round of public meetings on its long-range plan, NEXTransit, comes at a time of uncertainty and fiscal constraint.

Arts, Sports, & Culture

Steelers, Roethlisberger Agree To New Deal For 2021 Season

9 hours ago
Gene J. Puskar / AP

Ben Roethlisberger is returning for an 18th season with the Pittsburgh Steelers and is taking a pay cut to do it.

Courtesy of FolkLAB

Did you hear the one about winters in Olympia, Washington? They’re even longer, and grayer, than the ones in Pittsburgh!

Environment & Energy

Group Finds Microplastics In Every PA Waterway Tested

12 hours ago
Tommy Link

A new survey finds plastic pollution in every Pennsylvania waterway that was tested across the state.

Revolution Pipeline, Part Of Which Exploded In 2018, Is Back In Service

Mar 3, 2021
Marcellus Air

A pipeline that exploded in 2018 is back in service following an agreement between the company that owns it and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. 

Economy & Business

Glitches In PA Unemployment Program 'A Disaster' For Vulnerable Residents

11 hours ago
Liani Rountree-Crawley

When Janice Roundtree, 58, first enrolled in the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, she called it “a miracle.”

Local Headlines

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

A letter released Thursday by medical leaders from the region’s 12 health care systems says vaccination is the quickest path to return to normal.

Pennsylvania Hauled To Court Over Blocking Plastic Bag Bans

17 hours ago
Matt Rourke / AP

Philadelphia and three other municipalities in Pennsylvania sued the state Wednesday over what they say was a covert abuse of legislative power to block local bans or taxes on plastic bags that retailers give out to customers and, they say, end up as pollution and litter.

The lawsuit asks the statewide Commonwealth Court to declare the state's ban unconstitutional. The other plaintiffs are West Chester, Narberth and Lower Merion Township, all in suburban Philadelphia.

Food & Drink

The pandemic has been tough for Eric Dossekpli. The 49-year-old farmer from Anfoin Avele, a town in the west African country of Togo, had trouble selling his peanuts, black-eyed peas, maize and cassava at the market. Customers couldn't buy much because of their own pandemic income loss. Then he couldn't afford fertilizer to keep growing his crops.

"I didn't know how I was going to buy food, to buy what's needed at home," he says. And with four of his six children in school, he needed to pay for their tuition.

National & International

This week, health care providers began administering the first doses of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. — the third vaccine authorized by the Food and Drug Administration to help stop the coronavirus pandemic.

That's welcome news in a country that still faces high levels of circulating virus in most regions, and a demand for vaccine that still far outstrips supply.

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