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    Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) Update


    On November 7, 2020, in spite of overwhelming, bipartisan opposition from the Pennsylvania State House and Senate, Governor Tom Wolf submitted his proposed Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) regulatory tax to the Independent Regulatory Reform Commission (IRRC) for consideration and approval. The public comment period runs from November 7, 2020 to January 14, 2021, which coincides with three national holidays and the end of the two-year General Assembly Session on November 30, 2020. There will be 10 public hearings, but only over five days from December 8-14, 2020. All hearings are virtual. None will be held within impacted communities as required under Pennsylvania law.
    Aside from the thousands of jobs lost at shuttered power plants, even more would be lost in manufacturing, transportation logistics servicing power plants and manufacturers, producers of raw materials and manufactured products and raw materials, vendor services, and all the jobs that support these core industrial activities. Entire communities, like Indiana County will be directly and immediately harmed due to the loss of the indirect and direct jobs, all because of Governor Wolf’s unilateral and illegal action.
    In October 2019 the Indiana County Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution condemning the Regional Greenhouse Gas initiative, on many levels, all of which spoke to how the RGGI tax would not enhance or promote a positive lifestyle for residents of Indiana County.  Commissioner Ruddock said “I think the intentions are good, but what’s going to happen is that you will have a lot of our plants closing because they won’t be able to afford the taxation and still be operational. If they leave Indiana County, there will be a serious dent in property tax because it will devastate the base of our property tax in many of our communities. When you do something like this, there is an impact on communities like Indiana County where the complementary organizations, trucks, the people that support the coal-mining industry in Indiana County will be affected by this.” Mr. Ruddock also added that the resolution signifies a call for education of the public and political leaders to the potential impact of RGGI on Indiana County and other communities that fact plant closures.

    Commissioner Hess said “I support this resolution because the initiative could have devasting effects on local economies and because I support the workers that are involved in this industry. But I also want to say that, increasingly, climate change is a concern to many Pennsylvanians and many in Indiana County and we have to find a way to deal with it. I do not think the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is a fair way to deal with it because it will have a disproportionate impact on counties like Indiana County and we already have taken many hits to our economies. Pennsylvania is the fourth largest producer of carbon-dioxide emissions and we need to urge our elected officials to work on the solutions that will address this problem. I have spent my career working on cleaning up the effects of the extraction industries, and doing that for the reasons that it beautifies, and brings tourism dollars and cleans our air, water and soil. I agree with the statements and facts in the resolution and support it, but we do need to applaud our elected officials who are trying to find solutions to climate change issues because it will affect us all. The world is moving toward a cleaner energy economy, and I hope Pennsylvania and counties will move along with it.”
    “The closing of these power generation plants within our school district will not only impact businesses through job loss, it will also have a negative impact on our educational resources,” said Curtis A. Whitesel, Superintendent for Homer-Center School District. “If this proposal prevails, our school district would rapidly face an annual $800,000 budget shortfall, along with hard decisions about how to fill that shortfall, cut programs and reduce opportunities for our students.”

    “Small businesses that support the electricity generation and coal-related industries throughout Pennsylvania will experience a significant setback to their businesses,” said Mark Hilliard, president of the Indiana County Chamber of Commerce. “This policy is pure anti-business and a will create a true competitive disadvantage for Pennsylvania as a whole.”
    Senator Joe Pittman and Representative Jim Struzzi are calling on residents of their Districts to step forward and actively participate in the public comment period currently open for Pennsylvania’s proposed entry into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative- also known as “RGGI”.
    The Department of Environmental Protection’s Environmental Quality Board is accepting public comment through January 14th.  The board will also hold 10 virtual public hearings from December 8th through the 14th.

    The Environmental Quality Board is accepting comments through the DEP’s eComment system or by email at  A subject heading of “CO2 BUDGET TRADING PROGRAM” and a return name and address must be included with each submission.  Written comments may also be made by mail to” Environmental Quality Board, P.O. Box 8477, Harrisburg, PA  17105-8477

  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 09:50:00 -0500

    Board hires assistant principal, approves technology purchases

    The Blairsville-Saltsburg school board hired an assistant principal and authorized additional technology purchases, among other topics addressed at a virtual voting meeting Tuesday.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 09:50:00 -0500

    County leaders scrutinize office deputy pay rates

    A chain of promotions triggered by the retirement of a longtime Indiana County Court House employee led Tuesday to an analysis of pay rates for second-in-command department workers by the county salary board.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 09:45:00 -0500

    S&T Bank declares quarterly dividend

    The board of directors of S&T Bancorp Inc., the holding company for S&T Bank, declared a fourth-quarter per-share cash dividend of 28 cents at its regular meeting Monday.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 05:32:00 -0500

    First Commonwealth reports financial results

    First Commonwealth Financial Corporation, the parent company of First Commonwealth Bank, on Tuesday announced financial results for the fourth quarter and full year 2020.
  • Tue, 26 Jan 2021 10:00:00 -0500

    Cody's Law is back at square one

    Remember Cody’s Law?
  • Tue, 26 Jan 2021 09:59:00 -0500

    Prompt vaccines urged for teachers

    Pennsylvania’s plan for immunizing residents against the coronavirus looks to be a fairly simple four-level plan.
  • Tue, 26 Jan 2021 09:54:00 -0500

    MC approves in-person return for K-6

    Marion Center students from kindergarten through grade six will return to an in-person instructional delivery model beginning next Monday, the school board decided unanimously in a meeting on Monday night.
  • Tue, 26 Jan 2021 09:55:00 -0500

    Club donates special chair to Alice Paul House

    The Homer City Women’s Club participated in the Artful Chair online auction fundraiser last fall and made the winning bid on the chair painted by Carter Cavalier, of Homer City.
  • Mon, 25 Jan 2021 09:54:00 -0500

    United Way prepares for Souper Bowl fundraiser

    The United Way of Indiana County will offer the annual Souper Bowl fundraiser from a new location this year, the Hilton Garden Inn at IUP.
  • Mon, 25 Jan 2021 09:54:00 -0500

    Indiana County COVID-19 update

    Indiana County saw an increase of 24 cases of COVID-19 in figures released Saturday by the state health department, and 10 more Sunday, raising the total 4,662 total cases. One additional death was reported Saturday, raising that total to 145.
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Keeping Hope Alive

    The coronavirus pandemic has im­pacted the lives and livelihoods of mil­lions across the nation and within the Commonwealth. Not only has the econ­omy been decimated with many individ­ual sectors and small businesses facing closure, but the corresponding revenue loss and the staggering cost of adapting to the pandemic has depleted the funds meant to help those most in need. The […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    PPP Loans: How Should You Prepare to Apply for Forgiveness?

    Many business owners applied and received Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans in the beginning months of the COVID-19 pandemic to help them withstand the economic challenges they faced and protect the livelihoods of their workers. These Small Business Adminis­tration – backed loans have a covered peri­od of 24 weeks, which is ending for many businesses who are now able to […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000


    One year ago, looking ahead to 2020, no one could have foreseen what was coming at us – how dramatically and drastically our lives would be changed. We knew there was a contentious elec­tion coming, but who could have known that a virus would virtually shut-down the country, change the way our society functions and claim over 300,000 Amer­ican lives […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Documentary takes viewers to the front lines of Geisinger’s COVID-19 response

    “Five Days in May — Inside the fight against COV­ID 19” captures emotional toll, ingenuity during pan­demic’s surge Facing down a mysterious, deadly disease, caregiv­ers across Geisinger’s hospitals have grappled with a harrowing inundation of patients battling COVID-19. A 30-minute documentary, “Five Days in May — Inside the fight against COVID-19,” offers a raw, emotional look at the challenges faced […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Pivots, partnerships and perseverance helping Centre County navigate economic challenges, be positioned for recovery

    Centre County – Happy Valley, as it is affectionately known – has a reputa­tion for being a community that pulls together in times of need. While noth­ing could have fully prepared anyone for what 2020 would bring, the pan­demic naturally brought out the best in the community in many ways. It has also shined a bright light on our economy’s […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Front Line Healthcare Workers Among the First to Receive Vaccine in Central PA

    (AP) Inoculations against the COVID-19 infection, which on Monday passed a grim milestone in the United States, began in earnest as health care workers and the elderly were the first to receive doses. Tens of thousands of doses had arrived in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware already. The first inoculations in New Jersey and Delaware started taking place Tuesday morning […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    One Day After Revealing His Own Diagnosis, Gov. Wolf Imposes New Covid-19 Restrictions

    As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Gover­nor Tom Wolf and Secre­tary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine today implored Pennsylvanians to take the next three weeks and stand united against the virus by adhering to ex­isting mitigation orders and stricter ef­forts announced today. “Today I am announcing additional, temporary COVID-19 protective mitiga­tion measures in the commonwealth,” said Gov. Wolf. “With these […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Indiana Pennsylvania: Christmas Tree Capital of the World!

    According to the Indiana County Christmas Tree Growers’ Association, the county traces its Christmas tree roots all the way back to 1918, when local farmers were the first in the U.S. to grow the trees as crops. In 1956, an estimated 700,000 were cut in the county. Around that time, an Associated Press Dispatch dubbed Indiana the “Christmas Tree Capital […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Indiana County Center For Economic Operations and Ben Franklin Technology Partners announce BIG IDEA Winner!

    The Indiana County Center For Eco­nomic Operations (CEO) partnered with the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Central and Northern PA to present the Big Idea Contest. The search was for tech entrepreneurs, software developers, or small manufacturers who are bringing to market new products or software appli­cations. Ben Franklin awarded $50,000 for the winning application. More than 100 friends, family […]
  • Fri, 18 Dec 2020 14:00:00 +0000

    Indiana County on the Move!

    The Indiana County Commissioners are finalizing design and permitting for the proposed Indiana Coun­ty Education & Technology Center project, a 26,402 square foot education and workforce development facil­ity that will house an expansion for the Indiana Center for Westmoreland County Community College and the Challenger Learning Center at Indiana Pennsylvania on the campus of the Indiana County Technology Center. The […]
  • Thu, 28 Jan 2021 12:02:01 +0000

    Bank of America's Pittsburgh market president leaving

    Brian Ludwick appointed to new post in Houston; BofA to appoint new leader here soon.
  • Thu, 28 Jan 2021 00:39:29 +0000

    Pittsburgh Public Schools delays return to in-person learning until April 6

    Students in the Pittsburgh Public Schools will not return to in-person classes until April 6 at the earliest. The school board approved the plan with a vote of 7-2 Wednesday night. The thought behind that is for teachers and bus drivers to be able to get vaccinated for Covid-19. For more, visit WPXI.
  • Thu, 28 Jan 2021 00:27:22 +0000

    Mews on Butler developer pursuing new Penn Heights townhouse redevelopment in Bloomfield

    Toronto developer launches marketing for new townhouse project near UPMC Children's Hospital
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 22:58:41 +0000

    County working on ways to streamline vaccine registration process

    Health Director Debra Bogen also acknowledged the rollout could be smoother and said the current process, which is so web-focused, puts at a disadvantage people who either don’t have access to the internet or who aren’t easily able to navigate the instructions.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 20:01:37 +0000

    What the state's saying about more vaccine shipments in next few weeks

    There isn’t enough supply of either the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccines to get to everyone in that first group, as untold numbers of Pennsylvanians have found out in the past week as they have wrestled with registration websites and vaccine providers, including hospitals and pharmacies.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 19:44:19 +0000

    Pennsylvania Senate passes $912 million pandemic aid bill, including funds for hospitality industry

    The measure allocates $145 million in grants to small businesses including taverns and restaurants throughout the state.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 19:23:28 +0000

    U.S. Steel names interim head of tubular solutions

    United States Steel Corp. (NYSE: X) has named Scott Dorn as interim head of tubular solutions, according to a news release.  Dorn takes on the role from Douglas Matthews, senior vice president of tubular solutions, who is scheduled to retire this month.  “Scott’s vast experience and deep understanding of the business position him well to lead U.S. Steel’s Tubular organization,” U.S. Steel President and CEO David Burritt said in a prepared statement. “We expect this to be a seamless…
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 19:03:38 +0000

    Pittsburgh Penguins General Manager Jim Rutherford resigns

    Pittsburgh Penguins General Manager Jim Rutherford announced his resignation from the organization Wednesday afternoon due to personal reasons, the team said. Rutherford, who is 71-years-old, first joined the team during the 2014-2015 season and secured back-to-back Stanley Cup championships in 2016 and 2017. The team made the National Hockey League playoffs every year under his leadership and he was named to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2019. “It has been a great honor to serve as general manager…
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 18:00:08 +0000

    Richard King Mellon Foundation unveils 10-year, $1.2B strategic plan

    Pittsburgh's biggest foundation builds on core strengths and focuses on six programs.
  • Wed, 27 Jan 2021 17:33:43 +0000

    Reports: Lowe's Home Improvement to take 100,000 square feet at Imperial Business Park

    New owner Silverman Group lands big box retailer as it works to expand the Imperial Business Park
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