Gun talks pervade Kane hearing
HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania's new attorney general wound up in the middle of a discussion about gun control Thursday at what was supposed to be a hearing on her office's budget.
In two days of hearings, Attorney General Kathleen Kane had urged the House Appropriations Committee to support a $13 million funding increase to offset payroll costs and finance crackdowns on child predators and an influx of violent drug dealers from Mexico. But on day two, committee members' comments often strayed from the budget's ledger lines.
Rep. Cherelle Parker, D-Philadelphia, applauded Kane's support for certain gun-control measures, including universal background checks for gun purchasers and mandatory reporting of lost or stolen guns.
Parker praised Kane for taking steps to close a loophole allowing Pennsylvanians to get concealed-weapon permits from Florida even if prohibited from doing so back home. Kane said her office is reviewing gun-reciprocity agreements between Pennsylvania and other states to identify any other such loopholes.
Kane's positions “sound like a little bit of heart to me,” Parker said.
Rep. Jeffrey Pyle, an Armstrong County Republican and vocal gun-rights advocate, said he hunts in several states and jokingly asked the Democratic attorney general to identify states whose reciprocity agreements are under review “so I don't break the law.”
Kane replied, “I'm quite ... sure that if you are a law-abiding citizen with a valid gun permit that you and I will never be having another conversation about it again.”
“Oh, I've got a bad feeling we're gonna,” Pyle said, evoking laughter across the room.
One politically hot issue that was not discussed at the hearing was the legal opinion by Kane's office last week that at least temporarily spiked Republican Gov. Tom Corbett's plan to contract out management of the Pennsylvania Lottery to a British company.
The contract with London-based Camelot Global Services, the United Kingdom's official lottery operator, guarantees at least $34 billion in profit to the state over 20 years, money Corbett has said will help the state provide services to a growing senior population.
Rep. William Adolph, the committee's chairman, said at the conclusion of the hearing that he supported the governor's efforts to augment the lottery revenue with “some type of guaranteed income.”
“I hope the contract was legal,” said the Delaware County Republican. “If it's not, it will be proven otherwise.”
Thursday ended the first of three weeks of budget hearings before the House and Senate appropriations committees.
At a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing Thursday, state Environmental Protection Secretary Michael Krancer told lawmakers that money from the new gas-drilling impact fee will take the place of general tax revenue to finance some state programs.
Krancer cited the so-called Act 13 fee as a source of future funding for such purposes as hazardous-waste cleanups, local conservation districts and flood control.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Federal grand jury reviewing Liquor Control Board violations, sources tell Trib
- Bill that would end district-level review of homeschooling in Pennsylvania goes to Corbett
- Pennsylvania school performance scores stuck in limbo
- Pa. town can keep Jim Thorpe’s body
- Eric Frein lookalike: I keep getting stopped
- Negra will serve on liquor board
- Attorneys want ‘Kids for Cash’ figure’s windfall frozen
- Under bill, taxes could rise for workers in Pa.’s distressed cities — except Pittsburgh
- State police have seized twice as much heroin this year as in all of 2013
- Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission urged to strengthen ethics training
- Customers rarely utilize right to cancel a contract