WEATHER: Philadelphia: partly cloudy, high of 43; Harrisburg: partly cloudy, high of 43; Pittsburgh: partly cloudy, high of 33.

NEW THIS MORNING:

* Philadelphia City Councilmembers scrambled Thursday to mobilize opposition against plans for the country’s first supervised injection site, causing a political dilemma for Mayor Jim Kenney, one of the initiative’s most prominent supporters, and helping to unravel the scheduled opening of a facility in South Philadelphia next week, the Inquirer reports.

* Philadelphia’s tax on soda and other sweetened beverages has not reduced residents’ consumption of such drinks, according to a new study, the Inquirer reports.

* A lawsuit filed Thursday seeks to end the practice in Pennsylvania of counting state inmates as residents of the district where they are incarcerated, arguing it violates a constitutional requirement that elections be free and equal, the AP reports.

* So far, more than 20,000 voters have signed up to vote by mail, Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration said Thursday. The Department of State launched the online application for mail-in ballots on Feb. 11, so voters have only had about two weeks to sign up, the Patriot-News writes.

* The fight to protect the General Assistance program for impoverished adults spurred a spate of fervent activism across Pennsylvania last June, including a shouting match on the state Senate floor and a protest outside Gov. Tom Wolf’s private home in York. Almost six months after it blinked out of existence, the activists who fought to preserve it say powerful lawmakers in Harrisburg have all but forgotten their appeals, the Capital-Star reports.

* Once one of the feistier members of the Pennsylvania Senate, where tradition, decorum, and allegiance to party are the general order of the day, Mike Folmer was the picture of surrender Thursday as he pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography charges that abruptly ended his legislative career last fall, the Patriot-News writes.

* State officials on Wednesday approved a proposed $90 million bond issuance to help cover costs for new voting machines across Pennsylvania, the PA Post reports.

* Philadelphia City Councilmember Jamie Gauthier gave SEPTA board members a piece of her mind about the transit agency’s transfer fee during this month’s board meeting, denouncing it as “regressive, plain and simple,” WHYY reports.

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The Public Record & Sid Booker invite you to 

Meet the Candidates!

Join the Philadelphia Public Record and Philadelphia legend Sid Booker on Friday, March 27, to welcome the campaigns for the presidential, congressional and statewide races on the April 28 primary ballot as they meet potential constituents!

The event, featuring assorted beverages and light appetizers, will be held at:

The legendary Sid Booker’s Club LaPointe, 4600 North Broad Street, Philadelphia on Friday, March 27, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Admission is complimentary for the general public. 

RSVP Here: https://tinyurl.com/pprprimary2020

For sponsorship opportunities and for candidates and consultants interested in participating, contact Melissa Barrett, Director of Sales, 

215-755-2000, ext.5; mbarrett@phillyrecord.com

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EDITORIAL PAGES:

* The Capital-Star has an op-ed by the Pittsburgh Current’s Larry J. Schweiger, who explains how PA House Speaker Mike Turzai’s parting gift to the gas industry will hurt the commonwealth for years to come.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: … PA Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams … Jeff Brown, Brown’s Super Stores (3/1) … Eleanor Dezzi, the Dezzi Group (3/1) … Want to wish someone a happy birthday in our newsletter? Email us their name, job title and upcoming birthday to editor@cityandstatepa.com

TODAY’S SKED:

10 a.m. - Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney will deliver remarks at the graduation ceremony for Police Academy Class #391. Temple University’s Performing Arts Center, 1837 N. Broad St., Philadelphia.

7 p.m. - Mayor Kenney will attend an event hosted by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society for the Philadelphia Flower Show, which is the nation's longest-running horticultural exhibit. Pennsylvania Convention Center, 12th and Arch Streets, Philadelphia.

To have your events included in Today’s Sked, please email the information to editor@cityandstatepa.com.

KICKER: “I’m at the mercy of the court.” – Former PA Sen. Mike Folmer. From the Patriot-News.