Monthly Archives: June 2013

Casting Of Lots

Yesterday it was finally decided which candidates will appear on the Democratic ballot for School Director in the upcoming November election. I had previously tied current school board member Daniel Klicker for the fourth and final spot on the Democratic ballot and I thought it may be helpful to describe the selection process that occurred because of the tie.

  1. Certification of results. After the election the results get certified. I am not sure what all is involved in the certification but I assume it means the Allegheny County Division of Elections reviews the results and blesses them. This did not occur until a few weeks after the primary election.
  2. Casting of lots. Once the results were certified, a letter was mailed to Dan and myself notifying us of the tie and that a casting of lots would occur the following week to determine who would appear on the ballot. Dan and I then went to the County Office Building where we were presented with a leather container containing 51 stones, numbered 1-51. We were to select a stone, and note the number, and then place the stone back into the container. The highest number would win and in the event of a tie, we would repeat the process. Since my name appeared first on the ledger, I selected the first stone which was number 24. Dan selected stone number 22.

Therefore your Democratic and Republican candidates for School Director in the upcoming November election are as follows:

Bryan Johnston
Jennifer McWilliams
Amy Joy Robinson
Lisa Saylor

Dan Klicker
Jennifer McWilliams
Amy Joy Robinson
Lisa Saylor

Budget Talk

Some good talk regarding the education and the PA budget from the Yinzercation blog.


As we get closer to the end-of-June deadline, our legislators are finally talking about the state budget. Yesterday, the Republicans in the PA House proposed their own budget in response to Governor Corbett’s plan, announced in February. [See “Budget with a But”] Their version adds $10 million more for education, bringing the total increase to $100 million. [PA House GOP Proposed 2013-14 Budget] After two devastating years of cuts, any increase is good – but $100 million doesn’t get us close to the nearly $2 billion our kids have lost.

Perhaps most telling, the Republican plan counts on $85 million in “savings” from all the teachers who lost their jobs last year (since the state now won’t have to pay their portion of Social Security and pensions). However, rather than putting those “savings” fully back into education, the House GOP shifts $75 million over to other…

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