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State Senator Supports Another Audit of General Election, Despite No Evidence of Fraud

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Lucy Perkins
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90.5 WESA

Sen. David Argall (R-Schuylkill) is supporting another audit of Pennsylvania’s 2020 general election, but there is no evidence of fraud and he doesn’t offer details about how this audit could take place; foster youth who aged out of the system during the pandemic have the option to reenter the system to receive services; and a new collection of poems and essays takes readers on a guide through Pittsburgh neighborhoods.

PA state Senator supports another audit of 2020 general election (0:00 - 7:00)

Republican state Senator David Argall (R-Schuylkill), chair of the State Government Committee, has called for another audit of the November presidential election, in which Joe Biden won the presidency over Donald Trump. This support came days after Trump publicly criticized Argall.

SpotlightPA’s Sarah Anne Hughes says, while the senator didn’t rule out an audit, it seems to be more solidified now.

“He spoke to SpotlightPA...and essentially said, ‘What’s the harm? What damage could we do by doing another audit? Pennsylvania has already done two.”

Hughes says SpotlightPA reporters pushed back on this, citing widespread mistrust and the lack of evidence that there were any problems with the 2020 general election.

“The senator’s position essentially is that maybe one more audit will be what it takes to make people believe in the process,” she says.

It’s unclear how this could unfold and who might fund it. The state’s already done two audits of Pennsylvania’s presidential election and found no evidence of fraud.

Foster youth can reenter the system until the end of September 2021 (7:00-13:30)

Foster youth in the state can remain in the system until the age of 21, receiving services to help transition into adulthood. However, foster youth that aged out of the system during the pandemic faced an unstable economy without a safety net. Those facing this hurdle can opt back into services.

The state Department of Health is allowing foster youth to reenter the system. This program and after-care services are county-administered, meaning youth interested should contact their local child welfare departments.

“Those after-care services mimic the same independent living services that they were receiving when they were actually in care,” says Teresa Musser, a program specialist in the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services’ Office of Children, Youth and Families. “So they can continue to get a needs assessment, they can continue to get case management, they can continue to get stipends and have housing supports.”

The goal of these aftercare services is to make sure youth have a successful transition into adulthood.

“I think not providing these options would really be a disservice to the youth that were in our care and custody or in the care and custody of the child welfare system,” Musser says. “It really does help continue to provide those services and help youth who are struggling because we can now serve youth through age 26 up to their 27th birthday or through September 30th, 2021, unless the law is extended.”

Collection of essays and poems takes readers on a guide through Pittsburgh neighborhoods (13:30-18:30)

“The Pittsburgh Neighborhood Guidebook'' isn't your standard directory, full of maps and lists. But this new collection of essays and poems could still help readers understand a rapidly changing city.

90.5 WESA’s Bill O’Driscoll visited with a few contributors to this book.

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s daily news program. Tune in weekdays at 9 a.m. to hear newsmakers and innovators take an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here or wherever you get your podcasts.

Kevin Gavin is the host of WESA's news interview program "The Confluence." He is a native Pittsburgher and served as news director for 90.5 WDUQ for 34 years. Since the sale of the radio station by Duquesne University to Pittsburgh EPM, Inc. (now Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corp.), he served as Executive Producer of Special News Projects prior to being named as host of "The Confluence" five years ago. kgavin@wesa.fm
Marylee is the editor/producer of The Confluence, the daily public affairs show on WESA. She got her start in journalism at The Daily Reveille and KLSU while attending Louisiana State University. She took her passion for audio journalism to UC Berkeley's graduate program and worked in public radio at WPR in Madison, WI, and WOSU in Columbus, Ohio.
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