Energy - January 10, 2014

Senator Waugh expected to resign Monday

In August of 2013 Senator Mike Waugh (R-York) had announced he would not be seeking re-election in 2014.  Now the Senator is expected to resign on Monday; a move that will trigger a special election to fill his seat for the remainder of his term.  Waugh had cited health reasons as part of his decision to not seek a fourth term back in August.  He has been a Senator since 1999 and previously served in state House of Representatives from 1993 until his election to the Senate.

Republican candidates have already emerged for the primary.  Founder and President of Penn Waste, Inc., Scott Wagner, declared his candidacy back in September and has said he’s raised $268,000 for his campaign.  Wagner has been critical of the GOP leadership in Harrisburg and has said he would not support Sen. Dominic Pileggi for Majority Leader.  And just this week Zachary Hearn threw his name in for the primary as well.  Hearn is the “deputy director for claims for The American Legion in Washington, D.C., where he advocates for benefits for the nation’s 21 million veterans.”  He is a Penn State graduate and Air Force veteran.  No Democratic candidates have emerged yet but party leadership in York County say they’re talking to potential candidates.  It is also expected that State Representative Ron Miller will “be the establishment Republican candidate.”  Discussion of nominees for the special election is not likely until the Senator formally resigns.


Vote on policy to allow guns on campus at state schools delayed

Frank Brogan, chancellor of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, announced this week that a vote to allow guns on open areas of campus would not be voted on at the board’s meeting on January 23.  Brogan said more study was needed on the issue.  The policy would have allowed guns in areas such as sidewalks and parking lots.  Of the policy, Brogan said “this is too important to rush.”  Currently each school is permitted to determine their own policy on firearms on campus.  There is no set timeline for a decision on the policy, which was presented by a task force after lawyers for the system felt that current ban wouldn’t “survive constitutional challenges.”  Seven of the 14 universities have already adopted policies that permit firearms to be carried in some areas of campus.  Under the proposed policy all deadly weapons would still be banned in all campus buildings as well as from sporting, entertainment, and commencement events, field trips and outdoor classes.