Elizabeth Hardison

Elizabeth Hardison

Elizabeth Hardison covered education policy, election administration, criminal justice and legislative news for the Capital-Star from Jan. 2019-April 2021. You can find her on Twitter @ElizHardison.

How to cast your vote in Pa.’s May 18 election

By: - April 27, 2021

Registered voters will have the chance to weigh in on ballot questions, fill vacant legislative seats and vote in judicial and municipal primaries on Tuesday, May 18. 

Boy eats lunch

Feds issue year-long extension of free food for school students

By: - April 22, 2021

The U.S. Department of Agriculture this week issued a year-long extension of a waiver program that lets schools send free food home with students. Originally set to expire this September, the program will now be in effect through June 2022. 

Bill aiding abuse survivors clears critical Pa. Senate committee hurdle. But will it see a vote?

By: - April 21, 2021

The measure sponsored by Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, now advances to the Senate floor, where it must be considered three times and pass a final vote before it can go to Gov. Tom Wolf. 

Confined to Zoom no more, activists return to state Capitol to hold lawmakers to account

By: and - April 20, 2021

After being shut out for much of the last year, activists of all stripes are returning to the stately marble steps and gilded interior of the Pennsylvania Capitol.

An ‘off-year’ election? There’s no such thing for these local officials. 

By: - April 18, 2021

Now, without the pressure of a heated presidential election cycle or the early panic of the COVID-19 pandemic, its impact on county election officials is becoming even more clear: they say they’re saddled with more administrative tasks and deadlines, and some have little confidence that the state legislators who write election laws will meaningfully improve their working conditions.

Students flocked to cyber-charter schools this year. So did district revenue and federal relief funds

By: - April 14, 2021

Like brick and mortar charter schools, cyber-charters are funded by contributions from public school districts. Districts pay the online schools an annual rate for each of their students who opt to enroll in one. 

Pa. joins national pause on Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine

By: and - April 13, 2021

(*This story was updated at 3:20 p.m. on Tuesday, 4/13/21 with new information from the Department of Health.)  Matching a federal order that came down Tuesday, Pennsylvania has paused the use of Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot COVID-19 vaccination until at least April 20, pending a review by the Food and Drug Administration. Federal regulators recommended […]

Major state contractor accused of fleecing workers out of $20M in benefits

By: - April 8, 2021

Glenn O. Hawbaker, Inc., a State College-based construction firm that frequently repairs roads and bridges for the Commonwealth, faces four counts of theft for allegedly violating state and federal laws that set wages for laborers working on public projects.  

Historic Pa. public school funding lawsuit finally heading to trial this fall

By: - April 2, 2021

The plaintiffs in the case want Pa. Commonwealth Court rule that the state’s current funding system is unconstitutional and order the Legislature to fix it. 

A federal eviction ban has been extended until June. Here’s how to get help with rent payments in Pa.

By: - March 29, 2021

The federal public health order bars landlords from evicting tenants who lost wages or income due to the pandemic.

Now Hiring: Redistricting commission seeks applicants for chair to oversee 2021 mapmaking

By: - March 29, 2021

The four-member commission, which redraws the boundaries for Pennsylvania’s state House and Senate districts once every 10 years, announced Monday that it’s accepting applications for a fifth member who will serve as its chair.  

charter school facade

Time is running out for Wolf to repopulate shorthanded charter school appeals board

By: - March 28, 2021

During his six years in office, Wolf has not nominated a single member to the powerful appeals panel, whose appointed members can overturn decisions by locally elected school board directors.