Pennsylvania Appropriations Hearings Day 3 by Sen. Scott Wagner
Here is the schedule of hearings held so far:
Governor’s & Executive Offices – Budget Secretary Randy Albright
Independent Fiscal Office
Department of Conservation & Natural Resources
State Police- Homeland Security
Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs
Here is what I learned yesterday:
1. During the Department of Conservation & Natural Resources hearing I learned that the Department had entered into a lease to lease land under the Allegheny River for 80 acres at a cost of $4,000 per acre for an approximate total cost of $320,000.
Here is my question to the department – Is $4,000 per acre for one year or multiple years?
Keep in mind – this is high priced swamp land – I want to meet the genius who entered into this deal.
2. The Pennsylvania State Police have between 135 and 145 full time personnel permanently assigned to casinos throughout the Commonwealth – the total cost without vehicle costs for the personnel is $28,491,000 (Million Dollars) – almost $200,000 person.
3. The State began the upgrade of a state-wide radio system approximately 10 – 12 years ago and the State Police use this system. Here is the bad news – the total cost spent so far is approaching $1.0 Billion Dollars and it does NOT work.
Recently a roll-off truck from my waste company was in the Pittsburgh area and our dispatcher in York was able to communicate to the truck via our radio system that costs less than $3,000 for the radio in the truck.
How many radios that cost $3,000 could be purchased for $1.0 Billion Dollars? The radio system sales rep who sold the system to the State is most likely retired and lives on a Caribbean Island from their commission.
Below are two articles that were reported in the last 48 hours –
The first from Bloomberg.com is Saudi Arabia to US Oilmen: Cut Costs or Exit the Business
I forwarded it to my Colleagues in the state House and Senate – with this message:
This story was published yesterday.
The message is very clear – Saudi Arabia has declared war on the US Oil Industry.
This price war is spreading to the Pennsylvania oil and gas industry.
Pay close attention – more layoffs are coming, banks will be writing off bad debt from the energy industry.
Saudi Arabia has around $650 Billion in cash on hand so they have at least five years of staying power burning $100 Billion per year. (Cash Burn)
Pennsylvania’s golden goose is about to get cooked.
The other is this: Teachers Union Head Paid $1.3 Million Dollars Not to Teach, Suit Claims
I can assure you that corruption, stupidity, lack of accountability, waste, fraud and abuse and past bad decisions made over the last 30 years are getting exposed.
In closing – I want to thank York County Voters who came out on March 18, 2014 and cast a write-in vote for me and sent me to the PA State Senate.
For me to serve in the Pennsylvania State Senate is an honor that I consider priceless and a huge responsibility – you may not agree with me on everything or may not like my style but I can assure you this – I will tell the truth and report what I find – Pennsylvanians deserve better from our state government.
I will continue to lead and be out front to change Harrisburg – and I am happy to report that the number of House and Senate Members right beside me that also want change is growing fast.
What I have seen over the time since I joined the PA State Senate in April of 2014 is simply breathtaking and makes me angry.
I will report more on Friday.
Pennsylvania Appropriations Hearings Day 3