DAILY GRINDER: Read this Account of Fracking in North-Central PA

Natural_Gas_FrackingA farmer in Bradford County, Pennsylvania has written an essay about what it has meant to “sacrifice” for the public good, and allow her land to be fracked. Then she sent it into the Public Herald. You should read it. It’s devastating. Here’s a piece: “My water changed March 15, 2011. It now turns white, with a green moss settling on top of sand. Then the water becomes gelatin like. My daughter became sick in October of that year with a fever, weight loss (10 pounds in 7 days), and severe pains in her abdomen. At the hospital they found her liver, spleen and her right ovary were extremely enlarged. My daughter moved out of the state…There are for sale signs in the yard of a contaminated farm that lost 80%-90% of its value, and could lose its milk market. Who will buy his cows? On our farm, we and our cows have rashes on our bodies.” An “All of the above” approach to energy: What could possibly go wrong?

So, we made it through the storm, but 1.3 million people in Pennsylvania are still without power, and may be for the next week. Governor Tom Corbett—who publicly announced that presidential candidate Mitt Romney called him to ask how things were going—said restoring power is a top priority and has deployed 1,700 National Guard troops across the state.

The governor has also said he’s going to take steps to ensure all the state’s electronic voting machines are up and running by Tuesday.

Mayor Nutter has said the hurricane “could have been worse” in Philly. He’s right! Comparatively, we were pretty OK.

As of this morning, SEPTA is back to normal. And I know they said the trains shut down at some point, but I can see the El from my window (and hear it) and I don’t remember a time when it wasn’t running — although, to be fair, I’m sort of at that point where I always hear the El, no matter where I am. Still, I’m not telling you there wasn’t a ghost train on those tracks over the last couple days.

Attorney General candidate Kathleen Kane has taken a big, 20-point lead over her Republican opponent Dave Freed in a new Philadelphia Inquirer poll—and has almost reached the 50 percent mark. Still 22 percent are still undecided in that race.

Yesterday, we reported that the official Romney campaign is back on the air in Pennsylvania. Turns out, Obama is, too. According to the Big Tent: “The Obama campaign apparently is running two ads in Pennsylvania, “Determination,” which touts progress in the economy, and “Stretch,” which attacks the wealthy Romney for paying a lower income-tax rate than many middle-class families.”

Several hundred real estate owners filed a class action lawsuit asking the Commonwealth Court to void the AVI budget deal that would allow the city to re-adjust (see: in many cases, raise) property tax values. Critics have held this would further deter home ownership in the city. The suit says “Council and the legislature violated tax uniformity protections” by basing real estate taxes on inaccurate property values from 2011.

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