Good morning everyone! Here is today's Daily Briefing.
Congrats to Emmaus, which was once again named as one of America's best places to live by Money Magazine, ranking 88 out of 100. There is also some good news for Easton, as the city was able to end 2008 with a small surplus. In Bethlehem, preparations have begun for the demolition of Broughal Middle School.
In state-wide news, the Pennsylvania budget saga continues. The House Appropriations Committee voted to approve Governor Rendell's version of the budget yesterday by a party-line vote, 19-14. The budget removed $1.2 billion from higher education and would create a special fund that item in an apparent attempt to balance to budget, although the Democrats didn't fund the $1.2 billion, leading to calls by some that this is an attempt to increase taxes. Meanwhile, in the apparently upcoming Senate primary between Congressman Joe Sestak and Senator Arlen Specter, Sestak reported an impressive fundraising haul, finishing the quarter with $4.2 million on hand. Senator Specter began the fundraising quarter with $6.7 million.
In national news, confirmation hearings for Sonia Sotomayor's Supreme Court nomination began yesterday, with statements coming from Judge Sotomayor and the Senators on the judiciary committee. Questioning is expected to begin today.
We have one Chamber event today - a "Tell us about you" networking luncheon, held by the Two Rivers Area Chamber of Commerce.
Business Matters aired yesterday. The the topic was whether or not religion and government are too closely tied. The show will be available online later today - for more information, check out the Business Matters blog.
That's all for today and for the next week, I'm afraid, as your resident blogger will be heading off on vacation! We will be back one week from today. Have a great week!