The most recent Franklin & Marshall College state-wide poll found that only 36 percent of the state’s voters believe that Pennsylvania is “headed in the right direction.” That’s significantly lower (57 percent) than a poll taken before the COVID-19 pandemic and state-wide mitigation efforts impacted daily life.
The poll indicated 67 percent of those surveyed support increasing the state’s minimum wage and 59 percent favor legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes. Both are issues garnering a lot of attention right now, as is the polarization of vaccines.
The poll also gauged voters perceptions of President Biden and former President Trump’s records, as well as results of the state’s 2020 presidential election.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention track diseases and respond with guidelines to prevent the spread and severity of outbreaks like COVID. Throughout the pandemic they have responded by issuing guidelines for Americans, which government agencies have used to develop mitigation practices.
Updated CDC Guidelines for vaccinated individuals:
• Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or staying 6 feet apart.
• Visit with unvaccinated people from one other household indoors without wearing masks or staying 6 feet apart if everyone in the other household is at low risk for severe disease.
• Refrain from quarantine and testing if they do not have symptoms of COVID-19 after contact with someone who has COVID-19.
Presidential memorabilia more than just a hobby for local historian
President’s Day federal holiday in February was just a few weeks ago.
For Smart Talk, it was an opportunity to look back at the men who have held our nation’s highest office, and enjoy some personal stories from a local collector and historian.
To continue that conversation and take a closer look into the personal side of the presidency, along with some little known facts, is Dr. Larry Cook, DC, an historian and lifelong collector of presidential memorabilia.
Municipalities want legislative action to address pollution
Communities across Pennsylvania are demanding the legislature take action, but in their absence not stand in the way of local communities enacting ordinances to address waste and litter from single-use plastics.
Chief Justice Roberts went so far as to accuse his colleagues of “turning into advice columnists,” after the court decided to allow a review of a case that lower courts had already dismissed without precedent.
The beautiful Susquehanna River is the longest river on the East Coast of the United States. It is also thought to be one of the oldest rivers in the world, even older than the Hudson, Delaware and Potomac Rivers.
For many years, the Susquehanna has been targeted by environmentalists because of the excessive pollution it receives from agricultural runoff, farming and untreated sewage. Because the river is a main tributary feeding in the Chesapeake Bay, Susquehanna pollution is blamed for endangering that important waterway.
The administration is coordinating with the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency and the departments of Education and Health to establish vaccination sites. The Pennsylvania National Guard and AMI Expeditionary Healthcare (AMI) will administer the shots.
The tolling concept was approved in November by the Public Private Transportation Partnership board, which does not require legislative approval to move forward. There is opposition to the plan, though, and the potential for legislation to limit PennDOT’s authority to approve tolling.
Appearing on Smart Talk Thursday to address the bridge plan is Ken McClain, Alternative Funding Program Director with PennDOT.
The IRS has their work cut out for them, too, as they deal with numerous virus-related provisions passed by Congress. Questions persist, including the impact of stimulus payments on taxable income, deductions for working from home, and tax credits that apply specifically to the pandemic.
Joining Smart Talk Wednesday to answer your questions are Ben Bostic, CPA and Director, Boyer & Ritter LLC and Brian Kutz, CPA and Manager, Boyer & Ritter LLC
The Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover makes historic landing
This is the first image NASA’s Perseverance rover sent back after touching down on Mars on Feb. 18, 2021. The view, from one of Perseverance’s Hazard Cameras, is partially obscured by a dust cover. Image made available by NASA/JPL-Caltech