State Takes Private Property

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Pennsylvania Earns a ‘D’ in Civil Asset Forfeiture Law
Millions in property seized from individuals not chaged with crimes


Pennsylvania earns a D for its civil asset forfeiture law, the practice where law enforcement officials seize civilian property if officers have probable cause it was involved in criminal activity, and Attorney General Tom Corbett has no comment on the matter.

The Institute for Justice (IJ), a civil liberties law firm based in Washington, D.C., compiled civil asset forfeiture data from all 50 states in their Policing for Profit report which documents property seizures and abuses by law enforcement agencies. Only three states in the country received higher than a C rating – Maine (A-), North Dakota (B+) and Vermont (B) – and just between 2000-2002, Pennsylvania civilians lost $20.2 million in currency, vehicles, real estate and other property to law enforcement officials who then funneled the money to other programs, or even to enrich their own offices. Click here to read more.

Pittsburgh’s Tunnel to Nowhere Heads Bad Stimulus Projects
Sens. McCain, Coburn: Ain’t no cure for the "Summertime Blues"

AUGUST 3, 2010 | by ERIC BOEHM

A Pittsburgh commuter rail project called "a tragic mistake" by none other than Gov. Ed Rendell and described as a "tunnel to nowhere" by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review editorial board was ranked third on a list of worst stimulus projects released Tuesday by U.S. Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.).

The project was originally expected to cost taxpayers $390 million, but is now estimated at $529 million. Last year, the project received more than $62 million in federal stimulus funds. The Federal Transit Administration had already given the Port Authority of Allegheny County $348 million to cover construction costs. Click here to read more.

While Posting Profits, QVC Gets $7 Million From Taxpayers
DCED Film Tax Credits extend to TV station

AUGUST 2, 2010 | by MATT COYNE

Of the $42 million the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) was tasked with handing out to film production companies this year, an eighth went to home shopping giant QVC.

The West Chester-based television station received almost $7 million for 51 projects since 2008, with $5.5 million just in 2009. Liberty Media, QVC’s parent company, reported QVC pulling in $1.7 billion in the first quarter of 2010, an adjusted revenue increase of 15 percent. Click here to read more.

More Stories

Pennsylvania Reps Reassert Anti-Health Care Reform Laws | August 5, 2010
DEP Uses Email Newsletter to Protect State From Drilling Firms | August 5, 2010
SEPTA Execs Want More Taxpayer Money For Mass Transit | August 4, 2010
Senate Cloture Vote Moves Reduced FMAP Package Forward | August 4, 2010
DRPA Caves to Criticism | August 4, 2010
Pennsylvania Earns a ‘D’ in Civil Asset Forfeiture Law | August 4, 2010
Table Games Driving Slot Machine Revenues | August 3, 2010
Woman Has Bone to Pick With Senators | August 3, 2010
Acquitted Bonusgate Defendent Alleges "Political Conspiracy" | August 3, 2010
Pittsburgh’s Tunnel to Nowhere Heads Bad Stimulus Projects | August 3, 2010
Pennsylvania School Districts Lead in Teachers’ Strikes | August 2, 2010
Legislative Leaders Will Grab Shovels, Start Filling FMAP Hole Wednesday | August 2, 2010
While Posting Profits, QVC Gets $7 Million From Taxpayers | August 2, 2010
Toomey Rails Against Obama, Sestak for "Economic Sclerosis" | July 30, 2010
Embattled Chief Justice Calls for Merit Selection | July 30, 2010
Nearly Half of State’s Municipal Pensions Distressed | July 30, 2010
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