Open primary legislation, Recycle Bicycle Harrisburg and bras across the bridge


What to look for on Smart Talk Wednesday, September 19, 2018:

A top state Senate Republican has introduced legislation to open Pennsylvania’s primaries to unaffiliated voters. Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati admits he doesn’t expect the bill to pass this session but is hoping to at least get the legislation to committee.

Currently in Pennsylvania, only registered Democrats and Republicans may cast ballots for their own parties’ primary races. A Scarnati staffer say’s the senator is concerned the current system is leading to Republicans and Democrats becoming more partisan, and less likely to compromise.

WITF Capitol bureau chief and host of State of the State podcast Katie Meyer joins Smart Talk to discuss the legislation.

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Katie Meyer

Also, some people take transportation for granted and that getting easily from place to place is an expectation. But not everyone has access to safe and reliable transportation, often relying on the next best thing; old, rundown bikes acquired or handed down through families.

Ross Willard saw it often that young people and adults in Harrisburg rode whatever bike they had access to, regardless of functioning brakes or gears. The condition of these bikes and the dangers posed to the riders drove Willard to act. He started the non-profit Recycle Bicycle Harrisburg to provide people with access to safe, reliable and affordable bike transportation.

The Recycle Bicycle organization helps people fix and restore bikes for themselves. Individuals can pick out a bike that fits them and the organization helps them fix and make the bike safe and functional. Recycle Bicycle supplies the tools, the parts and the knowhow, so clients can “earn” a bike with sweat equity.

Willard is in the studio to talk about the program, along with Kelly Sangree, a “family biking” aficionado.

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Ross Willard and Kelly Sangree

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Finally, young women don’t often think about their breast health. Afterall, breast cancer is an “old lady” disease, right? Wrong! Breast cancer is an equal opportunity disease affecting women of all ages and backgrounds. The Feel Your Boobies® Foundation is on a mission to change how young women think about their breast health, primarily those under 40 (pre-mammogram age).

On Saturday, September 22, the foundation is hosting a ‘Bras Across the Bridge’ event to raise money for outreach programs that provide breast health education materials to colleges. In the past, participants walked the recognizable chain of 1600 bras from City Island into downtown Harrisburg. This year, participants will decorate and wear the bras, in addition to making the walk.

Joining Smart Talk to talk about this event and breast cancer awareness are Leigh Hurst, Feel Your Boobies founder and executive director, and Sarah Brennan, a breast cancer survivor who was first diagnosed at 38.


Leigh Hurst and Sarah Brennan