WEATHER: Philadelphia: p.m. thunderstorms, high of 94; Harrisburg: cloudy, high of 89; Pittsburgh: a.m. showers, high of 88.

 

NEW THIS MORNING:

* Major Pennsylvania lobbying and political firms have swept up millions of dollars in federal paycheck protection loans during the coronavirus pandemic – despite the fact that those loans explicitly bar money from going to organizations primarily engaged in lobbying, WHYY reports.

* Pennsylvania’s existing reopening guidance for schools is too vague, and superintendents and school boards need more specifics from the state Department of Health about how to do it safely, a superintendents group said Monday following a call with Wolf administration officials, the AP reports.

* Workers, from unemployment claims processors to security guards and nursing home aides, spent an hour Monday describing the perils of working through the coronavirus pandemic. The hearing, in front of the House Democratic Policy Committee, comes months after COVID-19 shuttered businesses and locked down the state, the Capital-Star reports.

* On the heels of the Bloomsburg Fair drawing public outcry over images of a man in a dunk tank impersonating Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Rachel Levine, a Tioga County tavern is apologizing for a menu item that mocked Levine, a transgender woman, PennLive reports.

* SEPTA began requiring face coverings in June, but some riders believe that the authority could do more to stress the mandate vital in slowing the spread of the coronavirus. Cases in the region are rising, and social distancing aboard transit will become only more difficult as commuters return. So far, 30% to 35% of ridership is back, according to SEPTA, the Inquirer reports.

* The Pennsylvania Department of Health announced 839 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday. For the second straight day, the state reported a new case count below 1,000. There have been a total of 108,264 cases of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania since the beginning of the pandemic in March. On Monday, there were four new deaths attributed to COVID-19, bringing the total to 7,122, the Tribune-Review reports.

* Four unoccupied Philadelphia Police Department vehicles were set on fire overnight, burning them but not injuring any officers or passersby, authorities said, the Inquirer reports.

 

EDITORIAL PAGES:

* The Citizen has an op-ed by Philadelphia 3.0’s Jon Geeting, who looks at the possibility of the state Legislature turning blue in November.

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: … 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:

9:30 a.m. - the PA House Human Services Committee will meet. Room G50, Irvis Office Building, Harrisburg.

10 a.m. - the Pittsburgh City Council will meet. Council Chambers, City-County Building, Pittsburgh.

10 a.m. - the PA House Human Services Committee will meet. Room G50, Irvis Office Building, Harrisburg.

10 a.m. - Governor Tom Wolf, Department of Labor & Industry Deputy Secretary of Workforce Development Sheila Ireland and South Central PA Works CEO Jesse McCree will visit PA CareerLink York County to highlight virtual resources available to job seekers in the commonwealth. 841 Vogelsong Rd, York.

10 a.m. - the PA House Majority Policy Committee will meet. Room 140, Main Capitol, Harrisburg.

1 p.m. - the PA Senate Majority Policy Committee will meet. Bayard Rustin High School, 1100 Shiloh Rd., West Chester.

1 p.m. - Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney will join Health Commissioner Dr. Farley and Managing Director Brian Abernathy to provide an update on the City’s response to the COVID-19 coronavirus in Philadelphia. These updates will continue to be live-streamed to the public via the Department of Public Health’s Twitter (@PHLPublicHealth) and Facebook accounts, and broadcast on PHLGovTV, Comcast channels 64 and 1164, and Verizon channels 40 and 41.

2 p.m. - the PA House Democratic Policy Committee will meet. Room G50, Irvis Office Building, Harrisburg.

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

 

KICKER: “The clock’s running out on us. There just are a lot of unresolved questions out there that need to be answered before schools can open.” – Mark DiRocco, executive director of the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators. From the AP.