I had no idea that the PA Supreme Court was still hearing a case on the pay-raise issue. It has to do with the overall constitutionality of the move as originally passed, whether judicial raises should be restored, and other technical stuff. Might keep the issue alive when it might otherwise have waned...
The money - the bulk of which goes to 43 of the lowest-performing schools - is part of the extra state funding the district has received over the last five years under terms of the [state] takeover agreed to by Mayor Street and former Gov. Mark Schweiker.
Apparently this move caught chief Paul Vallas by surprise, although he has received reassurance that the cut was a political stunt and that funding will be restored.
A little insight into the crowded race for the state 175th district seat was provided by this article, which looked at Dougherty's involvement. Namely, when Lederer announced her plan to retire so late in the year, everybody expected her aide, Michael O'Brien, to be interested in the seat. When he expressed disinterest, a union-connected committeeperson from the area, Terry Graboyes, threw in her hat. Then Dougherty encouraged O'Brien to reconsider (and meanwhile local activists reached out to Anne Dicker, who also jumped in, although her candidacy is given short shrift in that piece). Thus a crowded race, a split union vote, various degrees of "insider" involvement, and little discussion of actual issues. Crazy. I'm hoping to figure out the players a bit better soon; O'Brien and Graboyes don't even have websites, 5 weeks before the primary!