Author

Stephen Caruso

Stephen Caruso

Stephen Caruso is the Capital-Star's House reporter. He previously covered Pennsylvania state government for The PLS Reporter. You can reach him at 845-891-4306.

‘There should definitely be censure’: Pa. freshman rep. calls for action after ‘Islamophobia’ in House prayer

By: , and - March 26, 2019

'We need to be promoting inclusion, not division,' Rep. Movita Johnson-Harrell told reporters Tuesday.

#MeToo complaints against Pa. lawmakers would be investigated by independent office under legislation

By: - March 26, 2019

With little fanfare, the Pennsylvania state House adopted new sexual harassment rules at the start of session, streamlining a process whose vagaries had allowed members to stick around despite misconduct allegations — even from fellow members. On Monday, Democratic lawmakers in the House and Senate proposed a process to look into sexual misconduct in the […]

Pa. Legislature’s first Muslim woman calls prayer delivered by fellow House member blatant ‘Islamophobia’

By: and - March 25, 2019

A first-year member of the Pennsylvania House on Monday offered a prayer laden with political and Christian imagery shortly before the swearing in of the chamber's first Muslim woman.

Natural gas industry consultant to ‘debunk’ climate change consensus in House testimony

By: - March 24, 2019

A Pittsburgh geologist who consults for the natural gas industry, published a book casting aspersions on the scientific consensus around climate change, and who serves on a board for a climate denialist think tank will speak to members of a House committee Wednesday. Environmental Resources & Energy Committee Chair Daryl Metcalfe invited Gregory Wrightstone to “present […]

Auditor General DePasquale warns of looming financial disaster for Pa. Turnpike

By: - March 22, 2019

Shouldering nearly $12 billion in debt, the Pennsylvania Turnpike’s fiscal future has led to gloomy projections from the state Department of Transportation, transit advocates, and state lawmakers. On Thursday, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale — who sounded the alarm about the highway system’s coffers in an earlier audit — joined the club. “The Turnpike Commission, once […]

Rules limiting nursing workload brought back to Harrisburg

By: - March 22, 2019

Denelle Weller is a 14-year veteran nurse. She knows all about what happens when she and her colleagues are overtired and overworked: She once had to stop a fellow nurse from administering medicine to her daughter incorrectly, which could have led to kidney damage. She directly attributes the mistake to the heavy workload. “I’ve personally […]

House Democratic leaders work a cafeteria shift to build support for minimum wage hike

By: - March 21, 2019

Wearing hairnets and plastic gloves, Rep. Jordan Harris and Rep. Joanna McClinton of Philadelphia — the Democratic whip and caucus chair, respectively — stocked Coke bottles and filled foam shells with BBQ chicken at the Capitol’s cafeteria Thursday morning to show solidarity with state food service workers. “We’re both about building consensus,” McClinton said. “And if we’re […]

How Pennsylvania is trying to keep younger workers in the state

By: , and - March 21, 2019

Pennsylvania is getting grayer by the day. This week on the Capital-Star, we’re exploring why young people are staying and leaving the commonwealth — and what the state can do to keep them. Have a story to tell? Email us. Pennsylvania is getting older. Between 2017 and 2025, the number of working-age Pennsylvanians (those between 20 […]

State Police attempt to assuage GOP concerns on new immigration policies

By: - March 20, 2019

In February, Republicans expressed grave concerns over new Pennsylvania State Police policies that limit cooperation with federal immigration authorities. Some state House Republicans went as far as saying Pennsylvania had been made a de-facto “sanctuary state.” In a follow-up hearing Wednesday, State Police officials told the House Judiciary Committee that their policies do not prevent […]

Special election to replace resigning Ellis to take place on primary day

By: - March 20, 2019

The open Butler County house seat once held by Republican Rep. Brian Ellis, who resigned earlier this week following sexual assault allegations, will be filled in a special election May 21st — the same day as the state’s municipal primaries. House Speaker Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny, announced the date Wednesday. Candidates will be chosen the local […]

House panel hears from judges on how to fix state criminal justice system

By: - March 19, 2019

A panel of state judges met with the Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee Tuesday to discuss the state’s criminal justice reform efforts. Inside the state Supreme Court building, seven judges from counties across the commonwealth expressed support for reforming mandatory restitution, probation and parole, and bail practices.  Judge Kai Scott, of Philadelphia’s Court of Common Pleas, […]

Former Pa. Rep. Miccarelli lands job at Delaware County nonprofit that receives public dollars

By: - March 19, 2019

After leaving the General Assembly last year under the shadow of domestic violence and sexual assault accusations he denies, former Republican Rep. Nick Miccarelli has found a new job. As first reported by the Delaware County Daily Times, Miccarelli is now executive director of Community Transit, a nonprofit company that transports Delaware County residents who have […]