Saturday, January 21, 2012

State House Elections - 28th District

Could be big changes in the 28th State house District. Now that State Rep. Mike Turzai is planning on running for Congress in the newly designed (designed by Turzai himself) 12th District there could be a new State Representative from the 28th District. The district is extremely Republican so the battle will be in the Primary.

A question I have posed was if Turzai will run for both Congress and State House at the same time. I don't know how confident he is that he will win the Congressional Primary against Keith Rothfus.
I also think it will be more difficult than Turzai thinks to win the 12th District in the General if he is facing Altmire. I think Turzai could easily beat Critz mostly because Critz lives in Johnstown and 3/4 of the population of the 12th don't know much about Johnstown outside of the movie Slap Shot. Other than that, with Critz taking the hard line Democrat stance to win the Primary he is creating headlines for the Republicans in the General Election. The type of people that read this blog should know that the debt limit increase vote was a political stunt. However, that political stunt works for the Republicans because a majority of the voters don't understand how the government does business.

There was mention that one Republican was planning on running against Mike Turzai regardless of his intentions for the Congressional race. Karen Shaheen, who is the treasurer of the Republican Committee of Allegheny County, mentioned that she was going to circulate a petition against Mike Turzai. She said that Turzai has become a career politician that used to be a Democrat. She also said the attempt to pass liquor privatization and school vouchers were false marketing. Karen ran for school board in 2007 and 2009 and lost. She appears to be very conservative.

Can a good moderate Democrat make a run at this seat if she is the front runner?

Incumbent: Mike Turzai (Republican, Majority Leader of the State House, candidate for Congress)

Possible challengers: Karen Shaheen (Republican)
Sharon Brown (Democrat ran in 2010)

Here is the new map of the 28th State House Distinct. The green parts are the
old district and the aqua blue line is the outline of the new district.

North Pittsburgh Politics: It's Turzai's party, and he'll cry if he wants to

Just a reminder to the way Mike Turzai governs:

North Pittsburgh Politics: It's Turzai's party, and he'll cry if he wants to:

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Pine and Richland park fees

Do you think Pine Township and Richland Township should consider raising the fees to use their parks? Or is providing parks for youth sports socialism as the tea party likes to call it? Is that how the Repulican Elected Officials that promised to cut government came up with these plans to raise park fees because they couldn't cut elsewhere?

From the Post Gazette:
Some park fees to increase in Pine
Thursday, January 19, 2012
By Sandy Trozzo

Pine supervisors Tuesday increased fees for some park facilities and discussed whether to regulate the locations for gas and oil wells.

The superivsors voted 5-0 to raise some park fees to recoup some of the maintenance costs and on the recommendation of the parks and recreation commission.

The cost of renting a pavilion will remain the same, but a permit to serve alcohol will rise from $10 to $25.
Fees for playing fields causing issues in Richland Township
by Deborah Deasy Staff Writer
January 5, 2012

Richland-area athletic organizations want township officials to reduce proposed 2012 fees for use of playing fields at Richland Community Park.

"Nobody is going to be able to afford to go there and play," John Hall of Richland Church Softball League told Richland supervisors last month.

Township administrators want to raise the field use fees, however, to offset reportedly increasing bills from contractors who mow the grass, remove garbage and perform other chores to help maintain the park's fields.

Under the newly proposed fee structure, Richland Church Softball League, for example, faces a $5,080 bill in 2012 April-to-August for one-night-per week use of a field at Richland Community Park. The league paid $390 for use of the same field in 2011....
Read more:

Saturday, January 14, 2012

State House Elections - 20th District *UPDATED*

Here is the new map of the 20th State House Distinct. The green parts are the old district and the aqua blue line is the outline of the new district.

First off I have to apologize for the size of that map. Because of the huge...umm...phaulls shaped new 20th district I had to zoom out to get the entire district on my screen. At first glance it looks like half of the district is new with the added municipalities of Bellevue, Avalon, Ben Avon, Emsworth, Neville Township, and Coraopolis.

However, looking up the population numbers of those towns there isn't that many people added to the new 20th District. The population of the district is still mostly in the incumbents, State Rep. Adam Ravenstahl, base.This is a strong Democratic seat with the Northside and Lawrenceville parts of the city. Generally the North Boros vote for Democrats along with Coraopolis.

Again this is a seat that any real challenger would have to come in the Primary.One challenger has mentioned to me that they are planning on running for this seat. Mark Purcell has expressed interest in running for the 20th District...again. Mark Purcell has essentially run for this seat 3 times. He lost in 2006 against Don Walko. He lost in 2010 when attempting to be appointed as the candidate for the special election and he lost in 2010 in the primary to Adam Ravenstahl by 15% in a 4 way race. Purcell also lost to Matt Drozd by 43 votes in an County Council election that I wished he would have been able to pull off.

In a district that hasn't changed much population and didn't add any more of Purcell's base, this looks to be an easy race for Ravenstahl who beat Purcell by 15% last time in a 4 way primary election.

Incumbent: Adam Ravenstahl (Democrat)

*UPDATED*Possible Challengers:

Mark Purcell (Democrat)

Melissa Haluszczak (Republican) (h/t politicspa)

Kathy Coder (Republican) (h/t politicspa)

I think even a well funded Republican would have a hard time winning this seat in a Presidential year. Especially a tea party organizer like Haluszczak

2 Political Junkies: Of Course The Trib's Politics NEVER Skews It's Rep...

2 Political Junkies: Of Course The Trib's Politics NEVER Skews It's Repporting:

Never? Well, hardly ever.

They left out (omitted, expurgated, skipped over, voided) Congressman Jason

Read the full post at 2 Political Junkies.

State House Elections - 21st District *UPDATED*

Here is the new map of the 21st State House Distinct. The green parts are the old district and the aqua blue line is the outline of the new district.

The 21st District had to add some population to it and also was facing other city Representatives that had to expand out because of population loss. Overall this district looks pretty good for the incumbent, Rep. Dom Costa. It adds more of Ross Township to the 21st, but Rep. Costa's base is in Bloomfield, Morningside, and the North river towns of Millvale, Etna, and Sharpsburg. Also added to the Democratic city base is part of Lawrenceville.

This should be a very solid Democratic seat and the only real election would be in the spring primary. From what I hear Dom Costa is popular with every faction of the city Democratic Party. If anyone decides to run against him and make it a race, it would have to be someone from Ross Township. It would be an uphill battle because he has represented most of Ross Township since 2008.

I also should mention that the State House GOP tried to force Dom Costa and Adam Ravenstahl to face each other by putting them both in the 21st District (h/t Early Returns). However, the backlash of the greedy power grab that created 2 Allegheny County seats with no incumbents living in them must have forced House Republican leadership to split the district between Costa and Ravenstahl.

Incumbent: Dom Costa (Democrat)

Possible Challengers: Matt Drozd (h/t politicspa)

Another tough seat in a Presidential year for a Republican, especially one that not a moderate in any way.

Friday, January 6, 2012

State House Elections - 30th District

Here is the new map of the 30th State House Distinct. The green parts are the old district and the aqua blue line is the outline of the new district.

This is another incumbent protection redistricting of a Republican member of the State House. State Rep. Randy Vulakovich won this seat in 2006 defeating a 6 month incumbent that won a special election after Jeff Habay resigned the day before he was going to be sentenced for corruption charges.

The only real changes is adding Richland Township and getting rid of some of Ross Township and some river towns from the old district. I think this is a very solid Republican seat.

Incumbent: Randy Vulakovich (Republican)

Possible challengers: Haven't heard a peep about this race.

State House Elections - 28th District

Here is the new map of the 28th State House Distinct. The green parts are the old district and the aqua blue line is the outline of the new district.

Very little changes to the district. This is one of the few districts in Allegheny County that gained population so they had to eliminate some population from the old district. Richland Township has been moved out of the 28th and all of Franklin Park has been added to the 28th. This keeps the political make up of the district extremely similar if not a little better for a Republican candidate.

Incumbent: Mike Turzai (Republican, Majority Leader of the State House, possible candidate for Congress)
Possible challengers: Sharon Brown (Democrat ran in 2010)

I don't believe there is anyone that could beat Mike Turzai this year, no matter how much money or time they spent on this race.

New State House Districts North of Pittsburgh

Here are the new maps that will have an impact on North Hills area residents. All of the old districts are in green with the new districts outlined in blue:

16th District (State Rep. Rob Matzie):

20th District (State Rep. Adam Ravenstahl):

21st District (State Rep. Dom Costa):

28th District (State Rep. Mike Turzai):

30th District (State Rep. Randy Vulakovich):

33rd District (State Rep. Frank Dermody):

54th District (State Rep. Eli Evankovich):