According to a new Fox News poll, there's been a big swing in the Pennsylvania Republican Senate race. Back in March, Fox News showed David McCormick leading Dr. Mehmet Oz by nine points. A new survey now shows Oz in front, with 22 percent support, two points more than McCormick. Kathy Barnette is charging and sits only one point behind McCormick. Carla Sands is running fourth at eight percent with Jeff Bartos is fifth at seven percent. 18 percent of those surveyed remain undecided.
PPL residential customers better get ready for a big rate increase next month. The Allentown-based energy company says the 38 percent hike in their bills will come as the default rate rises nearly four cents per kilowatt hour. For the average customer using 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity a month, that means their bill will increase by about $34. This will be the second rate increase PPL residential customers will see in six months. Back in December, PPL raised rates by about 26 percent.
Gas prices just continue to go higher. A lot higher. Across Pennsylvania, the average price of a gallon of unleaded rose 17 cents over the seven days ending Tuesday. That $4.54 price is $1.46 higher than one year ago. According to AAA East Central, the Lehigh Valley's average price stood at $4.60 on Tuesday, a whopping 24 cents a gallon higher than the previous week and $1.54 more than on May 10, 2021.
Property owners in the East Penn School District are moving closer to a 3.6% tax increase to pay for the district's 2022-23 budget. The $174 million proposed budget represents a 2.9% increase from the current year's $169.2 million in spending. The board of school directors has given the proposed final budget its initial approval. Final approval is expected June 13.
State police are looking for information on a person suspected of using stolen credit cards at the Lehigh Valley Mall. A surveillance photo shows the suspect using stolen credit cards to buy about $2,500 worth of Apple devices at the mall in Whitehall Township.
The Lower Macungie Township Planning Commission again tabled modifications to a plan previously approved and submitted by Wawa. Wawa wants to build a 2,030-square-foot drive-thru restaurant at the Trexler Business Center, adjacent to the Movie Tavern and the First Commonwealth Credit Union headquarters. The plan includes only drive-thru service and curbside pickup for prepared food and drinks. No convenience store or gas fueling is proposed. This would be the second drive-thru-only Wawa in Pennsylvania.
Plans to build Pennsylvania's largest solar field in the Poconos are now back on the table. Swiftwater Solar will present its preliminary final plan to the Pocono Township commissioners at their June sixth meeting. The plan proposes a $111 million, 80-megawatt solar field on a private 644-acre site and the project would be owned by Vitol, a Dutch energy trading company. Construction is expected to take at least a year if the project is accepted.
Despite maintaining he's pro-life, Pennsylvania Democrat Sen. Bob Casey says he supports the proposed Women's Health Protection Act. If passed, the legislation would place abortion rights for women into law on a federal level. Casey describes himself as a pro-life Democrat, but says the potential ruling in the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade has changed his stance on the bill. Casey says he has never voted for and would not support a categorical ban on abortion.
State officials say the final part of restorations on the state Capitol have been completed. Work has been underway on the 116-year-old Pennsylvania Capitol for the past four decades in restoring it its original condition. It has taken more than a year to complete the work on the governor's office suite, which wrapped up a few weeks ago. The governor's office project, paid for with tax dollars and donations to the Capitol Preservation Committee, cost more than $2 million to complete.
The American Dream Mall is losing millions of dollars. According to the Bergen Record, the retail and amusement center brought in $173 million in revenue last year but had $232 million in expenses. The three-million-square-foot mall was in the early stages of opening when the pandemic hit in March 2020 and last September. A fire shut the indoor ski slope, which has yet to reopen.