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Original and in-depth coverage about topics important to Pennsylvania

This blacksmith’s process can help you understand how the steel industry uses billions of gallons of Pennsylvania water

Environment Steel is the raw stock for much of our lives, including appliances, automobiles, bridges and buildings. So industry needs to produce a lot. And making steel requires a lot of water.

Pennsylvania charges bottled water companies next to nothing to extract from state waters

The state has a history of residents fighting to keep bottled water companies out of their backyards. Only now are legislators starting to consider proposals to charge these big companies more for withdrawing the state's natural resource.

Is Pittsburgh’s land bank operational? City says yes. Residents disagree

Overlooked communities In October, it will have been two and a half years since the Pittsburgh passed legislation to create its own land bank.

But city community groups say there hasn’t been much progress in setting up solid policies or procedures under which a Pittsburgh land bank would operate.

When officials threaten demolition, these people step in to preserve the Pittsburgh region's historic homes

Overlooked communities “Every house has a story,” says Maryann Huk, director of the McKeesport Preservation Society.

And every house has its own remnants of life. Sometimes dishes are left on the table. Food in the refrigerator. And the owners long gone. It’s like an image taken straight from the aftermath of the Great Depression, Huk says.

How Allegheny County is trying to move on from the legacy of blight

One approach is tackling green spaces that have turned into littering grounds. Vacant lots are more than just an eyesore; they’re an opportunity for green community ventures.

Why some Pittsburgh-area school districts choose to raise property taxes and others don't

All school districts are feeling the pinch of rising pension costs. Some have responded by repeatedly raising property taxes while others spare residents with as few tax increases as possible.

Why are your property taxes going up? You can blame school pensions.

The Legislature has put more money toward education in recent years, however, a lot of that new money has paid for pensions.

When your child struggles with mental illness, you have to wait weeks for mental health services in Pennsylvania. Here's why.

Families in which children and teens are suffering from mental illness are enduring waits of four to eight weeks to get appointments with psychiatrists. To mitigate delays, health officials are working to help pediatricians treat mental health issues.

Pittsburgh has to replace some lead water lines. But authorities have to find them first.

Homeowners won’t be required to replace the part of the pipes they own, but if they do, they’ll have to pay.

How funding to curtail Pennsylvania's heroin crisis became a casualty of budget politics

Part of the project: Heroin: Riding the Rush

Grants for life-saving services were awarded, and money was spent. Except the money was never really there.

Why pipeline safety is one of Pennsylvania's next big energy challenges

On the morning of April 29, a natural gas transmission line exploded in a field in Salem Township in Western Pennsylvania. 

Why are our young people taking their own lives?

Suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people. In Allegheny County, several efforts are ongoing to stem the loss of life through suicide prevention tools.

The state knows where medical errors are harming patients. But it won’t tell you.

The Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority tracks troubling “events” to help healthcare providers improve, but keeps its data under lock and key.

What's the right amount of time for a birth mother to change her mind about putting her baby up for adoption?

The adoption process in Pennsylvania is being scrutinized for potential updates, but one bill that could halve the time birth mothers have to decide against adoption has been particularly controversial.

Here’s what it’s like to be an abortion clinic escort in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh’s two abortion clinics make the city a destination for women seeking care, attracting two other groups: abortion protestors and volunteers who guide patients inside.

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