Transition teams beginning to assemble Corbett administration |

Transition teams beginning to assemble Corbett administration

HARRISBURG — Gov.-elect Tom Corbett on Tuesday will address members of his transition committees, which are meeting for the first time to help shape the direction of his administration and recommend key staffers.

Corbett will meet with members of 17 transition committees, which will examine 25 departments and agencies in state government, according to a memo to transition committee members.

The committees’ work will help Corbett choose his Cabinet members, who will help carry out Corbett’s plan to cut state spending and shrink state government.

Corbett, a Republican, defeated Democrat Dan Onorato, the Allegheny County executive, in the Nov. 2 election. Corbett remains state attorney general until he is sworn in as governor on Jan. 17.

The transition will be overseen by co-directors Tom Paese, a former Cabinet member under Republican Gov. Tom Ridge, and Leslie Gromis-Baker, director of Ridge’s 1998 campaign. Both are lobbyists.

Corbett’s spokesman could not be reached for comment Sunday.

The transition committees are made up of business leaders, former Ridge officials, ex-legislators, lobbyists and apparently one Democratic lawmaker — Sen. Anthony Williams of Philadelphia, according to the memo distribution list. Williams is expected to play a key role in the General Assembly on Corbett’s plan to implement tuition vouchers for school choice. He was an unsuccessful Democratic candidate for governor, who heightened awareness of school choice through TV ads.

Also invited were former PennDOT Secretary Brad Mallory, who served as a member of Ridge’s Cabinet, University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Mark Nordenberg, former Allegheny County Executive Jim Roddey, former Rep. Paul Clymer of Bucks County, former Sen. Joe Uliana, a lobbyist, and Matthew Brouillette, president of the Commonwealth Foundation.

The committees will hear from Paese and Gromis-Baker as well as the co-chairs of Corbett’s transition team: Pittsburgh lawyer Jack Barbour, Republican National Committeewoman Christine Toretti and Philadelphia lawyer William Sasso. Another slated speaker is Brian Nutt, Corbett’s campaign manager who is his transition chief of staff, according to the memo.

The topics covered include the preparation of transition reports, a review of schedules and ethics and confidentiality in handling resumes. The event begins at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the state museum.

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