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August 2013

Friday Happy Hour: Dancin’ in the Streets Edition

Julie Andrews

It was a week of dance numbers, all right – lap, tap and otherwise – beginning with the Video Music Awards on Sunday night. Remember sweet little Hannah Montana? Well, say hello to her alter ego, prurient provocateur Miley Cyrus, now 20, whose performance set off a massive parental group cringe. The award for the best line goes to Time magazine’s TV critic, James Poniewozik, who tweeted, “I think I'm now legally required to put myself on some kind of registry.” The inventor of the giant foam finger was not amused, commenting that he would rather see Julie Andrews perform “The Sound of Music.” We’re with him, and that’s sayin’ something.

Business and labor came together under the newly weight-restricted Liberty Bridge in Pittsburgh to call for action on a transportation funding bill when legislators return from summer recess next month. Recapping the funding issue, those for it include business, labor, farming, trucking, health care, Governor Corbett, AARP, local governments, 45 of 50 senators, 58 percent of voters and our Aunt Martha. Those opposed include state Rep. Daryl Metcalfe’s wing of the House Republican caucus and five anonymous cranks on

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Pharmacy Access Coalition Urges Pennsylvania General Assembly to Support Measure Expanding Access to Vaccines

Attachment (1)

HB 776 would expand pharmacists’ authority to administer vaccinations to children seven and older, with parental consent

PITTSBURGH — As students return to school in the final weeks of National Immunization Awareness Month, Pharmacy Choice & Access Now (PCAN) is urging the Pennsylvania General Assembly to support legislation that would increase access to vaccines for school-age children and teens.

The bill’s prime sponsor, state Rep. Seth Grove (R-York), was joined by educators, health care professionals and students at the University Club in Oakland to highlight the critical role that pharmacists play in delivering quality health care to local residents.  House Bill 776 would provide a convenient option for parents wishing to vaccinate their children by allowing trained and qualified pharmacists to help increase immunization rates among children seven and older, with parental consent.

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Friday Happy Hour: Hour of Power Edition


It is not often you find two U.S. Senators from the same state serving on the powerful Senate Finance Committee, the panel entrusted to write ( and re-write and re-write) tax law in this country. Unless of course, you happen to be from Pennsylvania, because that’s how we do it up in the Keystone State!  Senators Bob Casey and Pat Toomey are reportedly hammering away at wholesale changes to the country’s tax code, the goal being to come up with one that doesn’t require a degree in astrophysics to figure out. We’ll be over here in the corner with our accountant, rooting for them. 

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Friday Happy Hour: Andy Warhol Edition


If you happen to be in the Steel City for the next week or so (and many of us will), be sure to go and catch a glimpse of the Andy Warhol Bridge, which is about to be the subject of the largest “yarn bomb” in history.  The entire bridge will be decked out with blankets designed by over 1,800 artists.  Warhol would have turned 85 this week, and we are sure the iconic Pittsburgh native would have been a big fan of the yarn bombing!  

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Economic Development for OARC’s Jack Kitchen: Seeing is Believing


Economic development along the Ogontz Avenue corridor is a classic case of “seeing is believing”, according to Jack Kitchen, President and CEO of the Ogontz Avenue Revitalization Corporation.  Check out this exclusive Triad Strategies Video interview with Kitchen as he welcomes the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce on a recent bus tour.

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Friday Happy Hour: Surely You Can’t Be Serious Edition


Our crack Happy Hour I-team has it on good authority that several legislators were shocked to learn that PennDOT Secretary Barry Schoch was serious when he said that failure to pass a transportation funding bill before summer recess would result in hundreds of bridges being closed or weight-restricted. Schoch said as many as 2,200 bridges could be affected.

As it turns out, Sen. John Rafferty wasn’t pulling our leg, either, when he said $2.5 billion annually is the right number for boosting transportation spending. The funding initiative stalled after House Republicans reduced Rafferty’s Senate Bill 1 by a half-billion dollars. Rafferty said he intends to pursue the issue when the General Assembly returns in the fall.

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Crisis management begins with preparation


By Rick Kelly

Crisis management and crisis communication practitioners have a veritable laboratory in the Jerry Sandusky sexual assault scandal. It happened again this week, by way of sworn testimony at a preliminary hearing held to determine whether the cases against three former Penn State administrators should move forward (they will).

Previously, we explored what a crisis management blueprint for moving past the scandal might look like, weighed in on the advisability of shutting up, especially in the absence of interview training and explored the damage that speculation can cause to one’s position or reputation.

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