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Essential Pittsburgh: State Police Commissioner Nominee Faces Criticism

Tony Webster
With Governor Wolf's nomination, Marcus Brown leads the Pennsylvania State Troopers.

Controversy continues to surround Governor Wolf’s nominee for State Police Commissioner Marcus Brown. The former Maryland State Police Commissioner has come under fire for wearing the PA State Trooper uniform. He is now under investigation for allegations of misdemeanor theft. We get the latest on the beleaguered nominee with Patriot News Capitol Reporter Christian Alexandersen.

"In a couple different interviews, [Marcus Brown] made the point of using the word honor and showing respect for the people he's going to lead. He said that to lead the organization it would make sense for him to wear the uniform...The retired state troopers have been pretty vocal, especially on social media and online, about their feelings...One retired officer said [Brown's] decision to wear the uniform was to show his power and authority." - Christian Alexandersen

Also in this hour, cities around the globe go dark this Saturday in honor of Earth Hour (including parts of Pittsburgh), we revisit the history of the Fort Pitt Block House, and the Farm to Table Food Conference connects Pittsburghers directly to their local growers. 

State Police Commissioner Controversy (starts at 0:00)

Christian Alexandersen expanded on the reaction of the retired troopers, saying that while some said that his wearing the uniform was not a big deal, others felt it was a matter of disrespect:

"[They are saying] he hadn't gone through what they had gone through. There's one retired trooper that I spoke to that really went in depth about how hard it is to go to the state police academy where you're spending six months away from family and friends, it's almost like boot camp. And that's something that Marcus Brown hadn't gone through here, and they don't feel that he should be allowed to wear that uniform without having, in their eyes, earned it." -- Christian Alexandersen

Earth Hour 2015 (starts at 23:50)

The 9th annual Earth Hour takes place this weekend. For one hour businesses, landmarks and homes around the world will go dark to shed light on global environmental issues. We’ll discover how a number of organizations, including the Green Building Alliance, Chatham University and Sustainable Pittsburgh, will observe the event. Vice President of Climate Change at the World Wildlife Fund Lou Leonard joins us to explain what Earth Hour offers on a global scale. 

WESA Celebrates (starts at 36:20)

The Fort Pitt Block House, located in Point State Park, is the oldest building in Pittsburgh. In more than 250 years of existence it’s weathered natural disasters, urban expansion and industrial growth. But it owes its survival mostly to a group of women who refused to yield.

Farm to Table Food Conference (starts at 40:30)

This weekend, the David L. Lawrence Convention Center will host the ninth annual Food Conference, one of Pittsburgh's opportunities for consumers to meet the local farmers who grow their food. The conference is also free to many residents who do not have regular access to a fresh, nutritious diet. Director of Health Benefit Services at American Healthcare Group Erin Hart and Director of Wellness Services Liz Kanche discuss what Pittsburgh consumers can expect.

More Essential Pittsburgh segments can be found here

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