Protest Voter ID Law in Harrisburg July 11

voterrightsRally To Oppose Voter ID Law

July 11, 2013 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Pennsylvania State Capitol Rotunda
Main Capitol Building
North 3rd Street,Harrisburg,PA 17120

Bus leaves IBEW Hall in Vanport, PA at 7:00am Contact Linwood Alford 724-843-6319

 The rally will be held in the Capitol Rotunda to express continued outrage over the state’s voter ID law and to generate awareness for the upcoming court case, which begins July 15 in Harrisburg.

Joining members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus (PLBC) will be members of the NAACP, AFL-CIO, Communications Workers of America and Service Employees International Union.

Serving as keynote speaker for the rally is the Rev. Dr. William Barber, president of the North Carolina NAACP, who is known for his stirring commentary and fight for civil rights.

Under his leadership, the NAACP developed a new voter registration and voter participation system, which resulted in registering more than 442,000 new voters in North Carolina.

“Dr. Barber is one of this country’s strongest voter protection advocates, and I am pleased that he will be addressing our rally and supporting us in this very important issue,” said Representative Vanessa Lowery Brown. “Although Pennsylvania’s voter ID law was not implemented in the last election cycle, our work is far from over. We must continue to fight against this discriminatory law and make our voices heard until it is no longer law in our Commonwealth.”

Continue reading Protest Voter ID Law in Harrisburg July 11


The Blue-Green Alliance at Work at Lordstown, Ohio Plant

World’s Largest LED Retrofit Saves 80% For GM, Sets Positive Energy Example

By Tina Casey
Beaver County Blue via Clean Technica

July 9, 2013 – GM’s clean tech cred is pretty well established in the public eye through its popular Chevy Volt, and the company is no slouch behind the factory gates, either. At its Lordstown complex in Ohio, GM can now lay claim to the world’s largest LED retrofit project of its kind. The project involves more than 1,600 fixtures so far with another 4,000 set for installation this summer, and it has already reduced energy consumption by more than 80 percent at one factory in the complex. That’s partly because the LEDs themselves are more efficient and partly because the new fixtures incorporate some advanced energy management bells and whistles.

New GM LED lighting by ALLED (cropped) courtesy of GM.

The World’s Largest LED Retrofit

Aside from that impressive savings of more than 80 percent (which translates into about $780,000 per year), this project caught our eye because it was implemented by the Ellwood City, Pennsylvania LED specialist ALLED Lighting Systems, Inc., formerly known as Appalachian Lighting Systems.

CleanTechnica first noticed the company under its former name back in 2010, when it performed an enormous LED retrofit for Pittsburgh International Airport. At the time, it was the largest project of its kind in the US. The project was noteworthy not only due to its size but because of the company’s potential for creating new green jobs in its tiny home town.

Continue reading The Blue-Green Alliance at Work at Lordstown, Ohio Plant

PA Republicans Kill Medicaid Expansion

Beaver County Republicans Jim Marshall and Jim Christiana joined the House majority voting to deny Medicaid benefits to low income residents. Beaver County Democrat Rob Matzie votes to expand Medicaid benefits to help the working poor and uninsured.

Medicaid Expansion Passed 40-10 In Senate, Killed By Turzai In The House Rules Committee

On Sunday, the State Senate came together in an overwhelming bi-partisan vote to expand Medicaid in Pennsylvania under the authority of the Affordable Care Act.  This move would have provided health coverage to over half a million Pennsylvanians, and would have saved the Commonwealth over $250 million per year, while injecting $3 billion in new annual economic activity for the State.

Yesterday, however, the House Rules Committee, chaired by House Majority Leader Mike Turzai, voted along party lines to strip the Medicaid expansion out of the welfare code.

The move to kill Medicaid expansion was supported by all Republican members of the Committee – William Adolph, Matthew Baker, Jim Christiana, Brian Ellis, Mauree Gingrich, Robert Godshall, Seth Grove, Dick Hess, Thomas Killion, Ron Marsico, Tina Pickett, Mike Reese, Stan Saylor, Mario Scavello, Sam Smith, and Katharine Watson.

This expansion would have primarily benefited working families who can’t afford to purchase health insurance and who are not covered by their employers.

Representative DiGirolamo (R-Bucks), led an impassioned effort to undo the actions of Turzai and the Rules Committee, by moving to reject their amendments that removed Medicaid expansion.  After a short floor debate, the effort failed 108-94.  While the entire House Democratic caucus stood with Rep. DiGirolamo, Representative John Taylor was the only other Republican to join his colleague in standing up for Pennsylvania’s citizens.

Idaho AFL-CIO endorses HR 676, Medicare for All

Idaho AFL-CIO endorses HR 676, National Single Payer Health Care


Rep. John Conyers, sponor of HR 676
Rep. John Conyers, sponor of HR 676

Rian Van Leuven, President of the Idaho State AFL-CIO, announced that on
June 12, 2013, the delegates to the 55th Annual Idaho State AFL-CIO
Convention passed a resolution to publicly endorse and support H.R. 676,
Single Payer Healthcare.

Further the resolution states “That the Idaho State AFL-CIO will develop
working relationships with community organizations in Idaho which advocate
for single-payer healthcare and Medicaid expansion.”

Louis Schlickman, MD, an Idaho physician who practices in Meridian and is
Co Chair of the Physicians for a National Health Program state chapter,
showed the movie Escape Fire and made a single payer presentation to the
convention prior to the passage of the resolution.

After the resolution for HR 676 was passed by the Idaho State AFL-CIO
Convention, Dr. Schlickman stated that, “Collectively we are all realizing
that unions in general can play a huge role in helping others, not just
union workers, see the merit in a single payer financing system of care.”

Continue reading Idaho AFL-CIO endorses HR 676, Medicare for All

US Mayors Call for Elimination of Nuclear Weapons

U.S. Conference of Mayors unanimously adopts resolution “Calling for U.S. Leadership in Global Elimination of Nuclear Weapons and  Redirection of Military Spending to Domestic Needs”


Mayors for Peace
Mayors for Peace

Mayors for Peace congratulates the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) for its unanimous adoption of a bold resolution “Calling for U.S. Leadership in Global Elimination of Nuclear Weapons and Redirection of Military Spending to Domestic Needs.” The resolution, passed by the Conference on June 24 at its 81st Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada, calls for constructive U.S. engagement in new international disarmament forums and reorientation of U.S. national priorities by reducing military spending and redirecting those funds to meet the needs of cities.

The USCM is the nonpartisan association of American cities with populations over 30,000. As explained by its outgoing President, Mayor Michael Nutter of Philadelphia, who chaired the final plenary: “Resolutions, if passed, become the official policy of the U.S. Conference of Mayors.”

The resolution was adopted on the heels of President Obama’s June 19 Berlin speech in which he declared, “so long as nuclear weapons exist, we are not truly safe,” and announced his intention to seek
further bilateral nuclear weapons reductions with Russia. The resolution was introduced by Akron Mayor Donald Plusquellic, a former USCM President and Vice President of Mayors for Peace, and had
29 additional sponsors. It highlights several important new multilateral disarmament initiatives not mentioned by Obama in Berlin, and calls on the President and the U.S. government to demonstrate good faith by constructive participation in those initiatives:

·         The first ever High-Level Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on Nuclear Disarmament, to be held on September 26, 2013 at UN headquarters in New York;

·         A UN working group open to all member states “to develop proposals to take forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations for the achievement and maintenance of a world without nuclear
weapons;” and

·         A follow-on conference to the February 2013 Oslo Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons, to be hosted by Mexico in early 2014.

Continue reading US Mayors Call for Elimination of Nuclear Weapons

Insurance Industry Warns on Global Warming

June 28, 2013

By Tierney Smith

Ocean warming from climate change could make some parts of the world “uninsurable,” according to a new report from global insurance trade body, the Geneva Association.


It warns that the speed at which global oceans are warming is threatening the industry’s ability to sell affordable policies around the world, with parts of the United Kingdom (UK) and the U.S. state of Florida already facing “a risk environment that is uninsurable.”

And these areas are unlikely to be the last that will experience such problems.

But in the UK, hundreds of thousands of homeowners in areas at high risk of flooding will still be able to insure their properties, after the government struck a deal with the industry.

The deal—introduced as part of the government’s new water bill—comes just weeks before the current agreement is set to expire and follows lengthy negotiations with the Association of British Insurers.

The agreement will cap flood insurance premiums, linking them to council tax bands so that people in high risk areas will know the maximum they will have to pay, while a levy on all UK household insurers will be used to create a fund to cover claims for people in high-risk homes.

Continue reading Insurance Industry Warns on Global Warming