Gov. Josh Shapiro spent some of his Wednesday in Allentown at the Eastern Atlantic States Carpenters Technical College on Vultee Street and said the learning that goes on there and places like it is absolutely vital to Pennsylvania's future. "We know that right now we need more skilled workers than ever before. We also know that need is only going to increase in the coming months and years," the governor says. Shapiro says his budget included nearly $30 million in workforce training, vo-tech and apprenticeship programs.
Hurricane Idalia is impacting flights into the out of Lehigh Valley International Airport. Wednesday, Allegiant canceled several flights from Lehigh Valley International Airport to Punta Gorda and Orlando/Sanford and a pair of flights scheduled to arrive in Allentown from those destinations were also canceled. The airport reminds all passengers to check with their carrier to make sure their flight is still on track.
Day one of the 2023 Great Allentown Fair is in the books and like yesterday, day two of the fair is expected to feature picture perfect weather. Among the featured events today are Iron Chef battles beginning at 3 this afternoon, two shows featuring the Flying Wallendas and tonight's Grandstand show featuring Tyler Hubbard of Florida Georgia Line fame. That show begins at 7 tonight.
Republican state Senator Mike Regan from York is proposing new legislation to require schools to hire armed security guards. Senate Bill 907 would require personnel at every school during school hours. Regan says his bill would make sure they have vigorous training and certification requirements, such as lethal weapons training and how to interact with students. The measure would also allow schools to place armed personnel at extracurricular events outside of normal school hours. The idea would cost between 100-and-200-million-dollars to fund.
Eight of the ten state universities are taking part in a free certificate program offered by Google. The company's online learning program is now accessible as part of a public-private partnership. It will allow state college students to earn a Google Career Certificate as they pursue their undergraduate degrees and covers fields such as data analytics, cybersecurity and project management. The certificate courses are taught by Google employees. The programs will be free only for the first year, then state officials hope the courses can be kept to a very low cost when each university determines its prices.
State Republican Representative Jim Gregory is introducing a bill that would authorize anyone posing as a minor to be able to catch online predators. The measure would help groups that track on-line predators through sting operations and lure them out for arrests. Gregory, who is a child sexual abuse survivor, says law enforcement is stretched thin with limited resources and often doesn't have the time to devote to online stings. But others say such activity might be unconstitutional. Current state law only allows victims to be an actual minor or law enforcement members who are posing as a minor.
A new survey conducted in Pennsylvania shows Governor Josh Shapiro isn't being blamed for the budget delays. The new Franklin and Marshall poll suggests voters are more likely to blame lawmakers, especially Senate Republicans. Thirty-two percent of respondents say Senate Republicans are responsible for the delay, while 20 percent say it's the House Democrats' fault and another 20 percent say it's the governor's fault. Even so, the poll found that just under half of those surveyed said Shapiro is doing an "excellent" or "good" job as governor.