Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tony Phyrillas: Hold legislators accountable for PHEAA mess

Pennsylvania's student-loan agency has been run into the ground by overpaid executives who wasted millions of dollars and politicians who were supposed to oversee the operation.

Who pays the price? Pennsylvania students and their families.

Read
"State's college students paying price for PHEAA's free-wheeling spending" in today's online edition of The Mercury for more background.

The agency is supervised by a 20-member board of directors consisting of members of the Pennsylvania Legislature and Gov. Rendell's appointees.

Below is a list of lawmakers who have served on the PHEAA board (some for decades) and were asleep at the wheel while the agency's finances were drained by executives.

Hint: Most of the people below will be on the ballot in November.

The following of lawmakers who served on the PHEAA board at the time of the spending scandals: Rep. William F. Adolph Jr.; Sen. Sean Logan; Rep. Ronald Buxton; Sen. Jake Corman; Rep. Craig Dally; Sen. Jane M. Earll; Sen. Vincent J. Fumo; Sen. Vincent J. Hughes; Rep. Sandra J. Major; Rep. Jennifer L. Mann; Rep. Joseph F. Markosek; Sen. Michael A. O'Pake *; Sen. James J. Rhoades **; Rep. James R. Roebuck Jr.; Rep. Jess M. Stairs; Sen. Robert M. Tomlinson.

* O'Pake, who served on the PHEAA board for 20 years, was recently replaced by Sen. Andrew Dinniman. ** Rhoades, another longtime board member, was replaced by Sen. Edwin B. Erickson.

Tony Phyrillas

Tony Phyrillas is a columnist for The Mercury in Pottstown, Pa. He received a first place award for Best Opinion Column in 2007 by Suburban Newspapers of America. He was also honored for column writing in 2006 by the Society of Professional Journalists.

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