Electric City Electrified by Investment Returns

Wall Street Journal

An effort to turn this city into a rival of Hollywood isn’t turning out quite as planned.

A decade ago, Lackawanna County’s governing commission invested $500,000 to help the actor Paul Sorvino produce and direct a movie called “The Trouble With Cali” in Scranton, the county seat. The idea was to promote the city of 75,000 as a lower-cost alternative to Los Angeles or other big cities for film production.

Mr. Sorvino, whose many roles have included a mob boss in the Martin Scorsese film “Goodfellas” and a police sergeant in the television series “Law & Order,” proved less adept as a director than he had as an actor.

This made me LOL

In return for its $500,000 investment, which covered a large share of the production costs, the county received three Blu-ray discs of the movie, which officials promise will be available soon at the Scranton library.

July 21, 2015 at 11:19 pm Comment (1)

Late budget

Hey, Republican legislature…


July 3, 2015 at 4:27 pm Comments (0)

Blue on Blue

Lt Gov’s wife vs State Rep Kevin Boyle.

The alleged incident took place inside St Dominic Church’s parish hall during a fundraiser for the family of slain Northeast Philly military veteran Michael Strange. Boyle has been on the opposite end of a well-documented political feud with Stack.

“She sat down and flipped me the bird within three to four seconds of sitting down,” said Boyle, adding that he assumed the obscene gesture was related to his ongoing beef with Stack. “After she gave me the bird, I said, ‘What a trashy move.’”

The next moment, Boyle claims, he was covered in what he described as a dark-colored soda.

“She aimed the soda at me and it landed directly on me hitting from my chest to my lap,” he said.

Stay classy Democrats.

April 13, 2015 at 10:40 pm Comments (0)

Kane, Again

This time with warrants.

The purpose of the search was unclear, but it appeared to be the first sign that Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman was moving forward with her investigation into Kane, said the sources, who asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to discuss the case.

One source said the investigators were seeking e-mails from the office.

… and that’s why, ladies and gentlemen, you should run your own email server.

April 10, 2015 at 9:31 pm Comment (1)

Stupid Criminals

This guy could have used a computer expert BEFORE he advertised on Craig’s List.

Zachary J. Landis, 27, caught the attention of police when he posted a Craigslist advertisement for a hacker. Using an anonymous email, he told an undercover officer he owed fines and costs to the county and needed someone to get into the court’s computer system and make his balance zero, according to a news release from District Attorney Craig Stedman’s office.

April 9, 2015 at 9:24 am Comments (0)

Kane, Again


Attorney General Kathleen Kane fired the head of her appeals office Wednesday and had armed agents escort him from the office.

Kane spokeswoman Carolyn Myers said James Barker’s firing was part of a restructuring of the criminal division.

Barker told the Tribune-Review he testified before a statewide grand jury in Norristown that investigated Kane. He said he was under a “protective order” that was supposed to prevent retaliation against witnesses. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported last month that several current and former Kane staffers testified. The grand jury has recommended criminal charges against Kane in connection with leaked information about a previous grand jury case.

Asked whether Barker did anything wrong, Myers said: “I cannot say that.” Myers said his firing was “absolutely not” related to his testifying.

Barker also was responsible for statewide grand juries.

“I don’t believe I did anything wrong,” Barker said. “I don’t know why I was fired. My firing was the first anyone heard anything about a restructuring” of the criminal division, he said.


Maybe Attorney General Kane is simply clearing out the office in anticipation of her own resignation. A clean slate in there, if you will.

Nah. She’s sticking out her term.

April 9, 2015 at 9:23 am Comments (0)

Another Bad Day for Kane

Four months in, another Kane Chief of Staff packs their bags.

“While I will miss working alongside each of you, I am excited about what this new chapter holds for me and my family,” Rutherford wrote in an e-mail to friends and colleagues.

It continued: “I want to express my appreciation to General Kane for providing me with this opportunity and to all of you for your work on behalf of the people of Pennsylvania. It has been a privilege to serve, and I wish you the very best.”

The Inquirer piles on too.

Pennsylvania’s self-destructing attorney general, Kathleen Kane, should resign.

— insert litany of misdeeds —

The Editorial Board endorsed Kane’s candidacy partly because of her seeming promise as a reformer and professional prosecutor. But she has demonstrated that she is not up to the task. Given her repeated unspooling of corruption investigations and the looming possibility that she will be prosecuted herself, it is difficult to see how Kane can continue to serve as Pennsylvania’s top law enforcement official.

She’d be smart to resign, giving Wolf an appointment and giving that person a year to become the incumbent. She won’t.

But there’s blood in the water, and she’ll be primaried out.

April 3, 2015 at 1:04 pm Comments (0)

Kane Quash

Well, that’s certainly fishy.

Just months after taking office in 2013, according to people familiar with the matter, Kane revoked subpoenas already delivered to former casino owner DeNaples and William Conaboy, another political power player in Northeastern Pennsylvania, Kane’s home turf.

Though one of her most senior aides had approved questioning the two men, Kane told colleagues that the line prosecutor running the case was being “too aggressive” and was placing an unfair burden on DeNaples and Conaboy, a person familiar with the case said.

Five months after the subpoenas were withdrawn, public records show, DeNaples, through his business Pocono Gardens Realty, contributed $25,000 to Kane’s campaign fund – a contribution she ended up returning later that year.

There is really too much in this story to quote, go read it all.

Remember when she killed an investigation into corrupt Philly politicians? She didn’t call that investigation “too aggressive”, choosing rather to call it racist. Philly DA Seth Williams picked it up and has at least three current or former State Reps charged with a variety of political corruption charges.

April 1, 2015 at 11:18 pm Comments (0)

Force the Vote

Here’s a bad idea whose time should never come.

State Sen. Anthony Williams (D-Delaware/Philadelphia) will introduce legislation that will make voting compulsory. Meaning if you don’t vote, you’ll be fined.

But some of his colleagues don’t agree.

“It’s a violation of our rights as citizens. The government shouldn’t force us to vote. That’s our choice and by not voting that’s also our choice,” said state Rep. Rick Saccone (R-Allegheny/Washington).

Don’t vote. It only encourages them.


[Senator Anthony] Williams, a former gubernatorial candidate who has talked of running for Philadelphia mayor, cannot say the same.

In 2011, he was on leave for 31 of 72 Senate session days. He said in an interview that an illness early that year accounted for most of his leaves. He declined to discuss details. In 2012, he was on legislative leave for just six of 53 session days.

This year, Williams took leave for 15 of the Senate’s 50 session days – including five of six in January.

He said much of his leave came after a 5-year-old girl was kidnapped from her West Philadelphia school and brutalized, and he was in his community, organizing marches and raising rewards to find the suspects.

“There are some people who say you should be in Harrisburg all the time. I understand that,” he said. “But I have to make a judgment call sometimes. And I take responsibility for it.”

Senator Williams wants to force you to vote for him (or against him) for a job where one of the job requirements is voting… and he can’t be bothered to do the same.

He should return part of his salary, pro-rated for those days.

Lead by example, Senator.

March 25, 2015 at 10:47 pm Comments (0)

Pa House – Now 120 R to 83 D

Martina White became the city’s second Republican member in the state House on Tuesday night, with a commanding win in a special election for Northeast Philadelphia’s 170th District.

Her victory – by a margin of 14 percent with 97 percent of the vote tallied Tuesday night – prompted Republican celebrations and Democratic recriminations. White defeated Democrat Sarah Del Ricci, who was handpicked for the special election by Lt. Gov. Mike Stack III.

White credited the win – the first pickup by the Republicans of an open General Assembly seat in Philadelphia in 25 years – to the hard work of volunteers, including several unions that endorsed her.

Fun fact, Martina is also 26 years old and overcame a 2 – 1 Democratic registration advantage.


March 24, 2015 at 10:40 pm Comment (1)

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