The 1490 NewsBlog

powered by NewsRadio 1490 WESB

brought to you, in part, by

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Honoring Holley Motor Company

Members of the Street Dreams Car Club, and others, gather in front of Allegheny Store Fixtures -- which was the original site of the Holley Motor Company.

Sally, Costick, curator of the Bradford Landmark Society, talks about the Pennsylvania State Historic Marker honoring the Holley Motor Company to open the dedication and unveiling cermony Saturday afternoon. She also talked about the Holley family and how their inventions revolutionized the auto industry.

Bradford City Councilman Bob Onuffer reads the statement from the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission.

Mayor Tom Riel and others chat and enjoy refreshments following the unveiling of the marker.

Birthday Presents Needed!

I know it's rude to ask for a birthday present for yourself but I'm going to do it anyway. I want money -- for Jerry's Kids!

Please go HERE to donate.
Thank you!!

And yes, today really is my birthday.

One More Birthday Wish

Happy Birthday to
Jeanne Hurley Plaia
(I couldn't find a web site with Jeanne on it, but I thought a picture of her son's championshiop hockey team would be appropriate since she's the person who taught me to appreciate hockey. Sorry Jeanne, but I'm a Sabres fan now, though.)

Friday, September 12, 2008

Patel to Join CCMH Staff

Charles Cole Memorial Hospital has announced the addition of Nirav Patel, M.D., to its medical staff, effective September 15. Dr. Patel earned a medical degree at George Washington University and completed a residency in internal medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, New Jersey Medical School. He will join the CCMH hospitalist team of Dr. Brenda Wahlers, medical director, Dr. Syed Bhat, Dr. Rafael Meller, and Dr. Howard Miller and physician assistants Mandy Collins, Victor Jackson, Melissa Juliano, and Emily Lynch.

Reaction to I-80 Rejection

Turnpike CEO Joe Brimmeier made these comments upon reviewing the Sept. 11 FHWA memorandum on the application to toll I-80:

‘The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission believes that it met all of the statutory and procedural requirements in the pilot program, and we are disappointed in the federal decision to not move the state's joint I-80 tolling application forward. Yesterday's FHWA memo may well eliminate a critical tool in an already-limited transportation funding toolbox - not only for Pennsylvania but for all states facing a transportation-funding crunch.

The Turnpike Commission continues to fulfill its Act-44 financial obligations. It has made Act-44 payments totaling $962.5 million to PennDOT over the past year alone. In addition, more than $1.5 billion in guaranteed funding will be transferred to PennDOT between now and 2010 for highways, bridges and public-transportation agencies across the commonwealth. This ongoing funding stream means that Pennsylvania General Assembly members have ample time to carefully consider their options and choose a solution that is best for all Pennsylvanians.

The Turnpike's objective has always been to assist the commonwealth by offering viable alternatives to supplement the state's transportation budget. Under Act 44, we've served as the linchpin of the state's funding solution, and we anticipate a role in whatever future decision the General Assembly reaches. We still believe that the unique public/public partnership created under Act 44 - which maintains public ownership and oversight of a vital asset - definitely has merit and can serve as a model for other states. If called upon again, we are ready to do our part to ensure the state's ground-transportation network remains adequately funded and viable for many years to come."

Punxsy Predators Picked Up

Attorney General Tom Corbett today announced the arrest of two Jefferson County men who are both accused of using the Internet to sexually proposition what they believed were 12-year old girls, along with the transmission or possession of illegal child pornography. The "girls" were actually undercover agents from the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit.

Corbett identified the defendants as Michael Albert McCarthy, 64, 213 South Jefferson St., Punxsutawney, and Robert Duane Brewer, 28, 708 Mill Iron Road.

According to the criminal complaint, McCarthy and Brewer are both charged with using a computer located in McCarthy's home to sexually proposition what they believe was a 12-year old girl. Using an Internet chat room that was created to discuss video games, the defendants are accused of sending the girl two photos of what appeared to be naked boys.

Corbett said that later online conversations with the girl allegedly included the transmission of an explicit video depicting an adult male having sex with a young girl as well as a video of a woman masturbating. The chats allegedly included messages such as "I love you," and "can we have sex in your bedroom?"

Corbett said a detailed investigation by the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit determined that Brewer allegedly visited McCarthy's home frequently and used McCarthy's computer to access the Internet and communicate with other individuals - allegedly sending pornography photos and videos to individuals he chatted with. McCarthy is accused of using his computer to exchange and view illegal child pornography.

Agents from the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit executed a search warrant at McCarthy's home on February 20, 2008, with the assistance of the Punxsutawney Police Department, seizing his computer. A review of that computer by the Attorney General's Computer Forensics Unit identified 116 images of suspected child pornography, including photos and videos allegedly depicting children under the age of 18 engaging in sexual activity.

Brewer is charged with two counts of unlawful contact with a minor, two counts of attempted dissemination of obscene or sexual materials, two counts of sexual abuse of children (child pornography) and six counts of criminal use of a computer, all third-degree felonies which are each punishable by up to seven years in prison and $15,000 fines.

McCarthy is charged with 116 counts of sexual abuse of children (child pornography), two counts of unlawful contact with a minor and two counts of criminal use of a computer, all third-degree felonies which are each punishable by up to seven years in prison and $15,000 fines. Both defendants were preliminarily arraigned before Punxsutawney Magisterial District Judge Douglas Chambers. Brewer was lodged in the Jefferson County Jail in lieu of $150,000 bail while McCarthy was jailed in lieu of $50,000 bail. Both men are prohibited from using the Internet and were ordered to have no unsupervised contact with minors. Preliminary hearings are scheduled for September 18th.

Olean Police Make Graffiti Arrest

Two Olean teenagers have been arrested for defacing several buildings with spray paint last weekend. 17-year-old Robert McCormick and a 16-year-old boy are accused of spray painting "O-Town Soldiers" and "OTS" on a number of buildings, including the Knights of Columbus Hall, the B'nai Israel Synagogue and the Beef 'n' Barrel Restaurant. They're charged with a felony count of third-degree criminal mischief as well as making graffiti.

El Problema de la Cucaracha

Allegany is dealing with a cockroach problem at the former Don Lorenzo's Mexican Restaurant. The restaurant has been closed since April 16 when federal agents raided the building and arrested its owner for allegedly conspiring to hire illegal aliens. A company started killing off the insects, and their eggs, on Wednesday and says ridding the restaurant of the roaches could take several weeks. Village officials have consulted a lawyer about what else can be done since the village doesn't own the building. The owner, Simon Banda – AKA Jorge DeLarco – is in the Niagara County Jail in Lockport.

Arrests in 'Operation Cave-In'

HARRISBURG — Attorney General Tom Corbett today announced that agents from the Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigation, along with local police officers from the Northwestern Pennsylvania Meth Task Force, are in the process of arresting 23 people charged in connection with a large-scale meth lab operation in Venango and Mercer counties.

Corbett said the investigation, known as “Operation Cave-in,” focused on a sophisticated meth lab and pill-shopping operation allegedly run by Rockne K. “Rocky” Barber Sr., 62, 271 Henderson Road, Stoneboro, Venango County. Corbett said that Barber is accused of producing methamphetamine, using an underground lab located in a man-made cave that was hidden in a hillside near his home. Barber and his associates are also accused of coordinating the purchase of cold medicine and other chemicals required to produce meth.

“Using a secret underground lab and a coordinated effort to gather meth-related ingredients across the region, this drug organization produced and sold an estimated $1 million worth of meth over the past four years,” Corbett said. “The message we are sending today is that law enforcement agencies across all of Northwestern Pennsylvania are united in our efforts to attacking this problem, locating these labs and shutting down the meth trade.”

Corbett said that today’s arrests are based on evidence and testimony presented to a statewide investigating grand jury, which recommended the criminal charges which are being filed today.

Agents from the Attorney General’s Office and officers from the Northwestern PA Meth Task Force executed a search of Barber’s Venango County property on April 24th, 2008, seizing a fully-operation meth lab located in a cave at the rear of Barber’s home.

Agents also seized approximately $15,000 worth of meth oil (the final production step before finished meth); an assortment of meth-related chemicals and supplies; drug packaging materials; $20,000 in cash and a stockpile of 63 weapons, including a fully-automatic machine gun.

According to the grand jury, Barber was assisted by Roland W. Rodkey, 52, RR 5 Box 422, Franklin, and James Lawrentz, 40, 119 Fairgrounds Road, Stoneboro, who coordinated efforts to obtain pseudoephedrine cold medicine from stores throughout the region.

Barber, Rodkey and Lawrentz allegedly recruited and directed meth addicts and other addicts, also known as “pill-shoppers,” to visit pharmacies on a carefully scheduled basis in order to obtain the necessary cold medicine without attracting unwanted attention.

Corbett explained that pseudoephedrine, which is a key ingredient for meth, became more difficult obtain starting in 2006 because of a federal law (Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act) requiring those drugs to be placed behind the counter at store and limited the daily amount of pseudoephedrine that could be purchased.

According to the grand jury, after federal restrictions pseudoephedrine were imposed, Barber allegedly instituted a policy of “no pills, no meth,” refusing to supply meth to anyone unless they brought him several packages of pseudoephedrine in addition to cash.

According to the grand jury, individuals involved in the purchase, sale or distribution of meth or meth-related items, or the acquisition of meth ingredients, include Clarence “Clint” Barber, 37, 253 Henderson Station Road, Stoneboro (son of Rockne Barber); Thomas W. Beighley, 40, 3551 Sandy Lake Lebanon Road, Sandy Lake; Glen E. Bennefield, 41, 295 Patton Road, Sandy Lake; Keith A. Bence, 42, 1074 Hendersonville Road, of Stoneboro;

Dennis J. Clark, 42, 791 Orchard Road, Mercer; Machelle Lynn Hoover, 40, 24 Windsong Trail, Mercer; Constance Joy, 39, 55 Wengler Ave., Sharon; John Leroy Kellner, 44, 1749 Ray Milton Road, Polk; Steven Ray Malone, 38, 3583 Old Route 8, Polk; Ray E. McCool III, 31, 513 N. Broad St., Grove City; Shawn T. McCool, 29, 1820 Slatertown Road, Polk (brother of Ray McCool); Tracy Lynn Lewis (a.k.a. Tracy Lynn McCool), 40, Ashville, Tennessee; Michael Owens, 33, 574 Summit City Road, Kennerdell; Tracy Paglusch, 37, 360 N. Foster Road, Jackson Center; Stephen Ira Slater, 46, 590 Billy Boyd Road, Stoneboro; Ronda Claire Slater, 47, 137 Obitz Road, Sandy Lake (wife of Stephen Slater); Justin Bradley Walker, 29, of 6 West 4th St., Oil City; Amber Walker, 25, 6 West 4th St., Oil City (wife of Justin Walker and daughter of Roland Rodkey); Jodi Rae Walker, 28, 1436 Valley Road, Polk (sister of Amber Walker and daughter of Roland Rodkey); and Shawn Patrick Witherup, 48, 152 Rockland Station Road, Kennerdell.

Corbett said that Rockne K. “Rocky” Barber Sr. and James D. Lawrentz are both charged with participating in a corrupt organization, violations of the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act; conspiracy to violate the Drug Act; violations of the Meth Precursors and Chemicals Act; and criminal use of a communications facility.

Roland W. Rodkey is charged with participating in a corrupt organization; violations of the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act; conspiracy to violate the Drug Act; and violations of the Meth Precursors and Chemicals Act.

Corbett said that all of the other defendants are charged with criminal conspiracy to violate the Drug Act and violations of the Meth Precursors and Chemicals Act.

The criminal charges were filed today before Emlenton Magisterial District Judge Douglas Gerwick.

The defendants will be prosecuted in Venango County by Senior Deputy Attorney General Douglas J. Wright of the Attorney General’s Drug Strike Force Section.

Corbett noted that this is an ongoing investigation, focusing not only on Barber’s hidden meth lab and drug organization, but also the supply and flow of chemicals, cash and weapons through Northwestern Pennsylvania. More arrests are anticipated.

Corbett thanked Venango County District Attorney Marie T. Veon and Mercer County District Attorney Richard G. Kochems for their cooperation and assistance with this continuing investigation.

Corbett also thanked the police departments from Cambridge Springs, Edinboro, Franklin, Girard, Meadville, North East, Oil City, Polk and Titusville, along with Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) from Mercer and Venango counties, the PSP SERT Team and the PSP Clandestine Lab Response Team for their cooperation and assistance.

Clinger Jury Selected

The jury has been selected in the double homicide trial of a DuBois man. Jason "Spike" Clinger is accused of killing Brooklyn, New York, residents Davon Jones and Dianikqua Johnson in November of 2006 and leaving their bodies in a remote area of Jefferson County. The district attorney is seeking the death penalty.The trial is expected to last until the end of the month.

Meth Operation Broken Up

Drug investigators have uncovered a large meth lab organization operating in Venango and Mercer counties. Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett is expected to announce later this morning up to 23 arrests in the $1 million operation. The Attorney General's office is calling the investigation "Operation Cave-In" and says the underground meth lab and pill-shopping operation was "sophisticated."

Pitt Broadening Policy

The University of Pittsburgh is broadening its anti-discrimination policy to include the way people express their gender identity through their clothes and appearance.
The vice president of the university's Rainbow Alliance, which advocates for homosexual, bisexual and transgender students, says the changes extends that policy to "anyone whose gender identity does not match their assigned sex at birth." Rainbow Alliance vice president Kelly Coburn says that would include people whose wardrobe or appearance "isn't what most people would expect of their sex." A university spokesman says the new policy will also apply to university housing assignments. The university's anti-discrimination already covers sexual orientation.

New Teen Drug: 'Snurf"

The substance that hospitalized four Bucks County high school students on Monday was obtained by the boys from one of their relatives, police said Tuesday. A substance known as "snurf" sickened the boys. It is billed as an herbal supplement, and it is widely available on the Internet. Snurf has mood-altering effects similar to Ecstasy, authorities said.

Go to NBC for the full story.

Another Cold Case Arrest

A former Fredonia resident has been arraigned in a murder that happened 37 years ago. Chautauqua County DA Dave Foley says 54-year-old Donald Saden has been arrested for the 1971 murder of Robert Stiffler. Stiffler was a 25-year-old Vietnam War Veteran, and was stabbed to death. His body was found frozen along a road in Arkwright. Foley says they think they have a motive for the killing, but aren't releasing that information yet. Saden is being held in the Chautauqua County Jail on $100,000 bail.

Jamie & Rex Update

Thanks to Josh Hatcher for passing along this article:

K-9 handler marries medic who saved her life

Every married couple has a story about the first time they met. Mike and Jamie Mangan met on the battlefield in Iraq.

She was severely wounded, and he almost let her die.

Jamie, then an Air Force K-9 handler with the 21st Security Forces Squadron, was patrolling Baghdad on June 25, 2005, with her working dog, Rex. They were searching for improvised explosive devices.

On the drive back to base in her Humvee, Jamie drove over one.

For the full story, go HERE.

Another Belated Birthday Wish to ...

Bob Lundberg

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I-80 Tolling Plan Rejected

Here are the FHWA press release and memo denying the joint PTC/PennDOT application for tolling authority of Interstate 80.

Press ReleasePDF


Golf Tourney Raises $18,000

Steve Erway tees off during the Charles Cole Memorial Hospital Golf Classic at the Coudersport Golf Club. Also pictured is golfer Scott Carts. More than 20 teams played, raising approximately $18,000 to benefit the hospital’s Healthcare Scholarship Fund. Due to the generous supporters of the golf tournament, the auxiliary has donated nearly $500,000 to the hospital.

“We are grateful to all our golfers, sponsors, and donors for their generous contributions to our golf tournament. Through their generosity, we are able to give back to our area’s students,” said Jill Staiger, tournament organizer.

This year the hospital will be awarding $75,000 in scholarship funds to 15 students pursuing careers in nursing and allied health professions; 42 former scholarship recipients are still working at CCMH. Funds are awarded to area students pursuing healthcare related careers, including nursing, medical technology, radiology, physical therapy, pharmacy, dietetics, medical coding, and speech pathology. In the past, funding has helped the hospital purchase new equipment as well as with the renovation and construction of facilities such as the Women and Family Health Center, Patterson Cancer Care Center and Sleep Clinic.

Scarnati Pleased with Toll Decision

Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati is pleased with the anticipation that the Federal Highway Administration will deny Pennsylvania’s request to toll Interstate 80.

“As I have stated time and time again, I opposed the tolling of I-80 and now that the federal government has denied the request, we can focus on a more business-like plan to fund our transportation needs,” Scarnati stated. “In fact, over the course of the next several weeks it is my hope that there will be further debate on how to address this transportation crisis.”

Scarnati also mentioned that he believes his fiscally prudent transportation funding plan, which he introduced several months ago, will receive favorable approval from many of the members in the General Assembly.

“Governing is about making difficult decisions, and the plan I introduced makes the General Assembly and the Governor prioritize its needs within existing budgetary revenues,” Scarnati added. “One aspect of my plan looks to have already been realized with the elimination of tolls along I-80.”

“I think by the federal government’s denying the tolling of I-80 gives legislators and the Governor the ability to now take a step back and thoughtfully, deliberately bring about a plan that is effective and fair to all citizens across Pennsylvania,” Scarnati concluded. “This success is about local groups and state officials working together to let the Federal Highway Administration know that tolling the Interstate was not in the best interest of the Commonwealth.”

Climbing Limited at Rimrock

Forest Supervisor Leanne Marten has issued an order prohibiting rock-climbing or rappelling on any cliff, rock, or stone face in the developed area of the Rimrock Overlook. The developed area of the Rimrock Overlook involves constructed railings and structures intended for public viewing of the Allegheny Reservoir and surrounding lands. In the past, rock-climbing and rappelling was allowed in this area as long as ropes and other gear were not attached to the structures. As a result, ropes and other gear were anchored to vegetation behind the structures, blocking walking access around the developed area of the Overlook, and causing possible safety hazards. The Forest Order was issued to address these concerns. Other undeveloped areas of the Overlook will remain open for rock-climbing and rappelling.

Feds Reject I-80 Tolls

Congressman John Peterson says the federal government is rejecting Pennsylvania's plan to add tolls to Interstate 80. Peterson says Transportation Secretary Mary Peters is going to reject the proposal because it doesn't meet statutory and technical requirements. The decision puts new focus on an effort being pushed by Governor Ed Rendell to lease the Pennsylvania Turnpike as a way to raise money for other transportation needs, as well as a plan by Senator Joe Scarnati that does not include the tolls or leasing the turnpike. “Today, the ‘Closed for Business’ sign has been removed from Pennsylvania and the residents and business community along the I-80 corridor can now move forward without this burdensome cloud hanging over the Commonwealth," Peterson said in a news release.

More On the Graffiti Ordinance

This is from Talk About Bradford:

"You say the key to the ordinance is the fact property owners will be made to clean up their own property. I would agree except for the fact you know the City and or State will not be made to clean up their property. Also does this ordinance cover houses that are in serious need of a paint job. Some of those houses would look better covered in grafitti. Does the property owner clean up at his/her own expense or does the fund created by the city pay for it. I feel this ordinance will be just like taxes, let the homeowner take care or everything and the people on welfare will have to pay nothing."

I hope this clears up some things:

The ordinance does say that the city and state must clean up their property -- this includes PennDOT (Route 219). It also includes companies like railroads. Ask parks director Chip Comilla if the city cleans up graffiti on city-owned buildings.

The fines will go into a trust fund that will be used to help people pay for the cleanup if they can't afford it.

Mayor Riel and City Solicitor Mark Hollenbeck explained during the work session that the ordinance cannot tell the District Judge how to penalize the offender so, yes, it is up to him whether the offender will have to clean up graffiti or do some other kind of community service. But it seems like common sense to me that he/she would have to do some kind of community service.

The ordinance says that the penalty is a fine and/or "imprisonment for a term not to exceed ninety (90) days. Also "Any person who violates this ordinance shall also be required, either severally, or jointly with others, to pay restitution to the victims(s)."

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Trick-or-Treating in Oil City

Oil City will hold nighttime trick-or-treating for the first time since a Girl Scout was kidnapped, raped and murdered on her way home from a Halloween party 16 years ago. The city moved trick-or-treating to daylight hours after 11-year-old Shauna Howe died and they remained in effect since then. City council agreed to allow trick-or-treating from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. this year in part because a 10-year-old girl asked for the change. Brothers James and Timothy O'Brien are serving life terms for Shauna's murder. Eldred "Ted" Walker is serving 40 years in prison for his role in kidnapping Shauna.

GOP Campaign HQ Opens

State Representative Marty Causer holds the door of the newly opened Republican Campaign Headquarters for Larry Dunn. Also pictured is Janet Mostyn of Eldred. The headquarters at 85 Main Street in Bradford opened Wednesday and will provide informational materials and signs for the presidential, congressional and attorney general races as well as for Causer, Representative Kathy Rapp and Senator Joe Scarnati.

Causer says "There are some exciting candidates on the Republican ballot this fall. The McCain-Palin ticket is really picking up speed, and we have strong candidates for congress in Glenn Thompson and for attorney general in Tom Corbett."

He adds "The headquarters is a great resource for people to learn more about these campaigns at the grassroots level."

Causer is looking for volunteers to help staff the office. Anyone who's interested in getting involved should contact him at 814-331-0835.

(Democrats, if you tell me where you are, I'll give you equal time/space.)

Cub Named After Billy Ray Cyrus

Miley Cyrus isn't the only member of her family getting attention these days. The new Siberian tiger cub at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium has been named Billy Ray — after Miley's real life and TV dad, Billy Ray Cyrus. Zoo officials say the donors who paid to name the animal wanted to honor a deceased family member who was a big Cyrus fan. Billy Ray weighs 30 pounds now, and will probably grow up to be about 11 feet long and 450 pounds.

Crosby Construction Update

Workers continue putting the roof on the "new" Crosby Mart/Tim Horton's in Foster Brook Wednesday afternoon. I have to applaud their choice of a radio station to listen to as they work. The HERO rocks!

Sheriff Arrests Shooting Suspect

Police have arrested a Chautauqua County man wanted for questioning after the shooting death of his stepfather, Dean Nagel, on Tuesday. 19-year-old Daniel Hyers was taken into custody Wednesday morning on Villenova Road in the Town of Villenova. Chautauqua County Sheriff Joe Gerace spotted Hyers and made the arrest himself.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Council Addresses Graffiti Problem

WESB/WBRR News Director

Bradford residents have to start being more concerned about the way the community looks.

That was the message from University of Pittsburgh at Bradford President Emeritus Dick McDowell during Tuesday's night city council work session on the proposed graffiti ordinance.

It's about time we property owners stand up for our rights," he said. "We don't have to live in a blighted city."

McDowell said the graffiti ordinance is the third step in cleaning up the city, adding that he hopes "it's a continuing series of ordinances and that other changes will come about."

He said the first two steps were the continuing crackdown on drugs and the shopping cart ordinance.

"I encourage city council to come up with more ways to make this community more beautiful," McDowell said.

McDowell was one of about a dozen people who attended the session prior to Tuesday's regular council meeting.

Mayor Tom Riel addressed the speculation that the growing graffiti problem is a symptom of more drugs or gangs moving into the city.

"There is absolutely zero evidence that any of the graffiti in the City of Bradford is drug- or gang-related," Riel said.

Police Chief Mike Close added that "no matter how creative they were or how good it looked, (the people they caught) were local boys."

Council is expected to vote on the ordinance during its next meeting after some minor revisions are made.

As it reads now, no one under the age of 18 will be allowed to possess spray paint, and no business will be allowed to sell spray paint to a minor.

The penalty is at least a $25 fine for a first offense; $100 for a second offense; and $300 for a third offense. Prison time is an option as well. District Judge Dominic Cercone also has the option to make the person clean up the graffiti.

Riel said this does not cover all possession.

"If a child's at home painting his little, red wagon or if he's at home painting his bicycle … but anyplace, basically, off his parents' property … unless he gives a good, warranted explanation," he said.

Riel said one reason for the ordinance is that "right now (minors) can walk up and down Main Street with a can of spray paint and we can't do anything about it."

Property owners are also responsible for removing graffiti. They have 30 days during the winter and 15 days during the summer.

Riel said that most property owners are already good at removing graffiti as soon as possible.

Council members also expressed their hope that Foster and Bradford townships would adopt similar ordinances. Riel noted that Wal-Mart, in Foster Township, already has a nationwide policy to not sell spray paint to minors.

Double Fatal Crash in McKean Co.

Two people are dead following a collision at just after 8 o'clock Tuesday morning on Route 66 in Highland Township.

Police say a vehicle driven by 41-year-old Christian Bonner went out of control on the wet road, crossed the center lane and hit a vehicle driven by 61-year-old Prentice fish of Moutoursville.

Fish was flown to Hamot Medical center, where he died at about 3 o'clock. A passenger in his vehicle, 53-year-old Jody Fish was pronounced dead at the scene.

Bonner was taken to Kane Hospital for treatment of major injuries. Charges of driving too fast for conditions have been filed against him.

New Major at St. Bonaventure

A new bachelor of science degree in sport studies at St. Bonaventure University has been designed for students interested in pursuing careers in the leisure, recreation or fitness industries.

This non-teaching major offered through the School of Education will prepare undergraduates for careers in the fields of leisure industries, sports management, sports communication, sport sociology, allied health fields, sports psychology, rehabilitation, fitness and coaching.

“It will also be a great launching point for advanced study at the graduate level,” said Dr. Paul Brawdy, chair of the Department of Physical Education at St. Bonaventure.

Study in human movement and exercise will provide sport studies majors with a comprehensive understanding of the physiological and psychosocial foundations of movement in exercise and sport, Brawdy said.

The framework of the program offers students a unique movement-based experience, from which they’ll be able to choose from among five cognate tracks — Human Development and Learning, Sport Sociology, Human Movement Sciences, Sports Communications, and Sports Management.

“Students will be broadening their understanding of physical activity in general,” said Miguel Narvaez, assistant professor of sport studies, who just joined the St. Bonaventure faculty from the University of Texas-Tyler.

More information about the sport studies major is available at or by contacting Brawdy at (716) 375-2248 or

Erin Hannon's Address

Erin Hannon
Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital
Room #121
5401 South Street
Lincoln, NE 68506

UPDATE: Search for Suspect

Authorities are still looking for a Chautauqua County man following the fatal shooting of his relative in the town of Villenova early this morning. Sheriff's Deputies say 19-year-old Daniel Hyers apparently fled with his girlfriend in her maroon Kia Spectra following the shooting. Police believe the couple may be armed with two rifles and two handguns. Police believe the couple may be headed to the Buffalo area to harm the man's biological father.

New Flag Poles in Foster Township

These flags in front of the Foster Township Municipal Building are flying on brand new flag poles. Township Supervisor Cary Kaber says "Wal-Mart was gracious enough to buy those flag poles for us," after he spoke with store manager Ron Orris. Joe Sweet and his township crew installed the poles.

Marijuana Ash Starts Dorm Fire

A 19-year-old Medaille College student is accused of starting a fire in a dorm by emptying hot marijuana ash into a garbage can. Sean Burns of Prattsburgh faces multiple charges, including arson, following the fire Monday that triggered the building's sprinkler system, causing an estimated $200,000 in damage. Burns is accused of leaving the building without letting anyone know about the fire or pulling an alarm. Forty-one students were displaced by the water damage to their dorm. College officials say 26 students are staying in Adams Mark Hotel, while the other 15 moved back home or with friends or relatives. Officials expect to know later today when they can move back into the dorm.

SBU to Remember 9/11 Victims

The St. Bonaventure and Olean-area communities are invited to a ceremony at 11:15 a.m. Thursday in front of Plassmann Hall to commemorate the tragedy of Sept. 11, 2001.

The University’s 9/11 memorial is in front of Plassmann, located on the west side of campus.

The ceremony will honor the three University alumni killed in the attacks on the World Trade Center (Father Mychael Judge, Rob Peraza and Amy O'Doherty), as well as all the victims who died in Washington, D.C., New York and Pennsylvania that day.

Dr. Michael Fischer, provost and vice president for academic affairs, and Br. F. Edward Coughlin, O.F.M., vice president for Franciscan mission, will take part in the ceremony, along with students and members of the University’s ROTC unit.

LEAF Day Set for 9/17

The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford will hold its 26th annual LEAF (Law Enforcement Awareness and Familiarization) Day Wednesday, Sept. 17.

LEAF Day is designed to inform community members about services provided by various law enforcement and regulatory agencies as well as help students discover the aspects of a possible career in these fields. The event, which will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Frame-Westerberg Commons, is free and open to the public.

According to Dan Songer, director of campus police and safety, nearly 22 agencies will be represented in this year’s program, including the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Air Marshal Service, FBI, Federal Correctional Institution – McKean, Secret Service, U.S. Marines, U.S. Navy,

New York State Park Police, New York State Police, Pennsylvania Game Commission, Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission; Pennsylvania State Police, State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement,

Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services Inc., Bradford Township Police, City of Bradford Police, McKean County Adult Probation, McKean County District Attorney’s office and the YWCA Victims Resource Center.

Andrew McCole ’93 will represent the Special Investigations Unit of the Pennsylvania Bureau of Charitable Organizations.

There will also be a display of law enforcement vehicles, including the Bradford City Police SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) team vehicle and DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) car.

For more information, contact Songer at (814)362-7509 or Songer will be my guest on Wednesday's (9/10) LiveLine at 12:40 on WESB

Pitt-Bradford's Spectrum Series

A performance by soprano Hanan Alattar, hailed as “a singer of obvious promise” by the Denver Post, will usher in the fall 2008 Spectrum Series at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford. The Spectrum Series offers academic and curriculum-based programming at little or no cost to the university community and community at large.

“The Spectrum Series is a well-established series that provides an excellent and diverse range of artists at low cost to the university and surrounding community,” said Randy Mayes, director of arts programming at Pitt-Bradford. “I hope as many people as possible take advantage of it. Few universities offer a series with such a broad range and such high quality.”

Events take place at Blaisdell Hall’s Bromeley Family Theater unless otherwise noted.

Alattar will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 27, as part of a grant from the Marilyn Horne Foundation. Opera singer Marilyn Horne, a Bradford native, personally selected Alattar to perform at Pitt-Bradford, Mayes said.

Alattar has performed with the Chicago Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and New World Symphony, as well as at the Spoleto Festival in Italy and at Lincoln Center in New York. A graduate of University of Texas, she holds a master’s degree from The Juilliard School.

A winner of many awards for young singers, Alattar will grace the stage at Bromeley with performances of songs from Maurice Ravel’s “Five Greek Folksongs,” Gabriel Fauré’s setting of “Clair de lune” (French for “moonlight”), Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “Spring Waters” and more, including Samuel Barber’s most popular vocal song, “Sure on this Shining Night.”

Cost to the public is $6, and students are free.

Two award-winning poets will read their works this season. Kevin Prufer will share his writings with the public at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 30 in the Mukaiyama University Room of the Frame-Westerberg Commons. Prufer’s 2005 volume “Fallen from a Chariot” was named one of the best books of the last 25 years by the editors of Bloomsbury Review. A recipient of three Pushcart Prizes, he also edits “Pleiades: A Journal of New Writing.”

On Nov. 11, Aimee Nezhukumatathil will share her poems, starting at noon in the Mukaiyama University Room in the Commons. Her book, “At the Drive-In Volcano” won the Balcones Prize, while a “Miracle Fruit” brought home the ForeWord Magazine Poetry Book of the Year and the Global Filipino Literary Award. Both events, free and open to the public, will be followed with a reception.

An installation art piece, “Sprawlification,” will occupy the KOA Art Gallery in Blaisdell Hall from Oct. 17 through Nov. 14. In this exhibition, which is free and open to the public, artist Dylan J. Beck will show work that is inspired by domestic architecture and urban and suburban planning. Beck will talk about his work from noon to 12:30 p.m. Oct. 17 in the Webb/Bradford Forest Rehearsal Hall. A reception in the KOA Electronics Lobby will follow.

The Southern Tier Symphony returns for its sixth season at Pitt-Bradford at 3 p.m. Oct. 26. The concert will focus on composer Joan Tower’s “Made in America,” a fantasy for orchestra based on “America the Beautiful.” Cost for the public is $20, and students are free.

Grammy Award-winning classical guitarist Sharon Isbin will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 8. Isbin has performed at sold-out performances throughout the world, including New York’s Carnegie and Avery Fisher Halls, Boston’s Symphony Hall and Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center. She has been a guest on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered” and Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion” and has been profiled on “CBS Sunday Morning” and the A&E Network. Admission is $14 for the public and free to students.

Pitt-Bradford students will perform in the Division of Communication and the Arts production, “The Cripple of Inishmaan” at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20-22 and at 2 p.m. Nov. 23 in the Studio Theater in Blaisdell Hall.

Directed by Dr. Kevin Ewert, associate professor of theater, the Martin McDonagh production tells the story of “Cripple Billy” who decides to audition for a Hollywood film crew when it comes to town to film a documentary about his island. Cost for the public is $6; student tickets are $2.

On Dec. 3 at 7:30 p.m., the College-Community Choir will perform a variety of a capella and accompanied choral music with selections from the sacred and secular, and ancient and modern canons. The concert, under the direction of Dr. Lee Spear, associate professor of music, is free and open to the public.

The fall semester concludes with a live musical performance and gallery reception at noon Dec. 1, featuring Pitt-Bradford senior Andrew Laganosky. As part of a capstone exhibition called “Battle of the Brutes,” Laganosky, an interdisciplinary arts major from Carlisle, will display a musical video, digital prints, ceramic musical instruments, paintings and drawings in the KOA Art Gallery Dec. 1-5.

Belated Birthday Wishes to ...

Mayor Tom Riel
Joe Marasco
(So, I'm a week late. I'm sure they'll get over it.)

Another Birthday Wish

Happy Birthday to

Stephanie Clancy Dollinger!

Monday, September 8, 2008

New Parking Rules in FT

WESB/WBRR News Director

Speeders and illegal parkers should be aware of a new ordinance and a soon-to-be new speed limit on one street in Foster Township.

Supervisors have adopted an ordinance that will allow police to further enforce laws concerning parking in illegal areas.

Supervisors explained that Wal-Mart asked if anything could be done about people parking in fire lanes, handicapped spaces and no-parking zones.

Illegal parkers "don't regard anything, really," said Supervisor Chairman Bob Slike.

Township Secretary Jennifer Gorrell said that when they looked at the old parking ordinance, they realized they only private parking lot included was the Bradford Mall.

Police Chief Jeff Wolbert said instead of just including Wal-Mart, the new ordinance should be township-wide.

Any business that would like the police to enforce the ordinance in its parking lot must post the ordinance then make a formal request to police.

As for speeding, for about a year Seaward Avenue residents have been asking that the speed limit be lowered from 35 mph to 25 mph from the Bolivar Drive intersection to the area near 347 Seaward.

Supervisors had planned on changing the speed limit during Tuesday's meeting but learned late last week that they needed to change it in an ordinance, not a resolution, so it must be advertised first.

They expect to adopt the resolution during their October meeting.

Supervisor Cary Kaber said Police Lieutenant Tom Munn "has it all measured out and we're ready to go."

Kaber also addressed paving that PennDOT said it was going to do in the township.

Earlier this year, the plan was for PennDOT to pave East Main Street from Melvin Avenue to the Bolivar Drive intersection, and Bolivar Drive to Seaward Avenue.

But Kaber said because the state "is in a financial embarrassment right now" PennDOT won't be paving that whole area. They will, however pave the Bolivar Drive/Seaward Avenue intersection.

Kaber said PennDOT expects to do the work on September 15.

Seniors at Large on Stage

7 p.m.
Bradford Library

Cindy Graham and Pat Peterson rehearse their one-woman shows "Time Share Rag" and "Old Woman," that they will be performing Tuesday and Wednesday at the Bradford Area Public Library at 7 p.m. The shows are two in BLT's new "Seniors at Large" program, that offers groups and organizations a chance to have the troupe perform one or more plays at a meeting, party or other event.

Dick Marcott, Graham and Martha Madden rehearse "Glacier Bay." Others actors performing will be Molly Kloss, Kathy Bryant, Charles Church, Doug Soley, Rheda Freeman and Sam Sylvester. Pictured below are Bryant, Church and Kloss rehearsing "The Talking Bench." (I guessed wrong about which picture would be in the paper.)

Police Looking for Flasher

Bradford City Police are looking for a man who exposed himself to three girls as they were walking home from school Monday afternoon.

Police say that the incident happened at about 4 o'clock at the intersection of Interstate Parkway and School Street when a white man in his early 20s driving a gold colored car pulled up in front of them, exposed himself and asked them an explicit question.

The man has short blonde or light brown hair and may have a scar on his right arm. He was wearing an orange T-shirt, blue shorts and black sunglasses on top of his head. The girls said his arms appeared to be dirty.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call Bradford City Police at 368-6133, email them at police.bradfordpa@gmail.comor use the confidential tip line at

'Best and Brightest' Recognized

Business First Magazine in Buffalo has named is 2008 All-Western New York Academic Team made up of the best and brightest high school seniors in the eight-county region. Kathleen Lewicki of Olean was named to the second team. Special mentions were given to Rachel Jermann of Olean, Kelly Rickert of Cattaraugus-Little Valley, Melissa Ruth of Randolph and Benjamin Swanson of Gowanda. Schools in the region were asked to nominate their smartest and most accomplished students for consideration by a nine-member panel. 335 students were nominated.

Council to Address Graffiti Problem

Bradford City Council is holding a work session Tuesday night to address the growing graffiti problem in the city.

Mayor Tom Riel says "It's an unsightly form of blight that spreads, even lowering property values."

He adds that even the recently installed Route 219 bridges have become victims of graffiti.

Riel told WESB and The HERO Monday morning that the proposed new ordinance "will ban the sale of spray paint to minors and make it illegal for minors to possess spray paint in public."

The public is invited to the work session at 6:15 in city council chambers to share any ideas on other ways to curb the probem.

Student Resigns for Obama Remark

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — The leader of a statewide group of college Republicans has been forced to resign after posting racially insensitive comments about Barack Obama on the Internet.

Adam LaDuca, 21, the former executive director of the Pennsylvania Federation of College Republicans, wrote on his Facebook page in late July that Obama has "a pair of lips so large he could float half of Cuba to the shores of Miami (and probably would.)"

For the full story, go to

Grant to Help Expand Program

Sen. Joe Scarnati, center, presents a $900,000 check to Lock Haven University President Dr. Keith Miller, right, for an expansion of LHU’s physician assistant program at Charles Cole Memorial Hospital in Coudersport and at the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education’s Dixon University Center in Harrisburg. Also pictured is Ed Pitchford, president, chief executive officer, Charles Cole Memorial Hospital.
(Photo Courtesy of Charles Cole Memorial Hospital)

State Sen. Joe Scarnati presented a $900,000 check to Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania President Dr. Keith Miller today for the university’s proposed expansion of its physician assistant program.

The funding from the State Department of Education will be used by LHU for infrastructure and capital improvements, expanding the program into Coudersport (Charles Cole Memorial Hospital) as well as Harrisburg (Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education’s Dixon University Center). Pending approval by the appropriate regulatory and accrediting agencies, LHU expects to welcome its first class at both locations in May 2010, according to Walter Eisenhauer, physician assistant program director and department chair at LHU.

“This is quite a milestone for Lock Haven as well as Charles Cole,” Dr. Miller said. “This is what partnership is all about. As we move health care forward, we move the economy forward. What we’re doing in Coudersport is not much different than what we’re doing everywhere else. I hope you’ll see us as a resource that can only expand as we get to know each other better. This is part of our mission and we’re delighted to be a part of this,” he said.

“I am pleased to have been able to secure funding for this important initiative,” Scarnati said. “Without question, this is a wonderful example of the state partnering with institutions to improve the overall economic and health care climate of communities across Pennsylvania,” he said.

“Hosting the Lock Haven physician assistant program is an interesting and exciting opportunity for our hospital and the community,” said Ed Pitchford, president and chief executive officer at CCMH. “Medical education programs create a stimulating environment that will help us stay fresh and current, while providing our physicians the opportunity to teach and mentor students who will play an important role in our country’s health care delivery system. We know from experience that the best way to confront the shortage of health care professionals and avoid staff vacancy issues here at Charles Cole is to be active in the education of those who will provide medical care in the future. We are fortunate to have this opportunity and we appreciate the efforts of those who have played a role in making it happen.”

The LHU physician assistant program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). For more information, visit

One Book Bradford:
The Children's Blizzard

One Book Bradford, the community-wide reading initiative that debuted last year, has chosen “Children’s Blizzard,” a nonfiction book by David Laskin about the Great Plains Blizzard of 1888, which took the lives of many children because of its suddenness and ferocity.
The One Book Bradford Committee plans to hold several programs related to the book throughout the year, culminating in a visit by Laskin at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 9, 2009, at Bromeley Family Theater in Blaisdell Hall at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.

“Everybody in Bradford is concerned about the weather,” said One Book chairwoman Pat Shinaberger on why the group chose “The Children’s Blizzard.”

“Everyone has weather stories to tell.”

In addition to Laskin’s visit, the committee has planned other activities to increase readers’ understanding of the book and raise money for the author’s appearance.

“The Children’s Blizzard” tells the story of a group of pioneers on the Great Plains and a blizzard that has been remembered for generations. After reading histories of the prairies, pioneer accounts and books about one-room schoolhouses, Laskin hit the road from his home in Washington state to interview descendants of those who lived through the blizzard and meteorological experts.

“I was struck at how emotional the history of the settlement of the prairie was and is,” Laskin said in an interview with his publisher, Harper Collins. “Many of the settlers of the region were tough, terse farmers who seldom spoke of their feelings and tended to be stoic in the face of tragedy. But even these people became quite eloquent and passionate when recalling the hardships of the early days -- the plagues of grasshoppers and prairie fires, the sickness and death of children, the near starvation they endured the first years.

“In a way it’s similar to the history of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Colony -- only this prairie history took place less than 150 years ago, so it’s still fresh in the minds of family members. It seems odd that there are people still living whose parents were pioneers, but it’s true. They’re elderly, of course, but that only makes their memories and impressions the more precious.”

A lifelong weather enthusiast and a student of history and literature, Laskin has written a number of nonfiction books about weather history, American writers, artists, gardens and travel. “The Children’s Blizzard” won the Washington State Book Award in 2005. Laskin publishes regularly in The New York Times Travel Section and in Preservation Magazine, and has written for the Wall Street Journal, Smithsonian, Horticulture, Newsday and the Washington Post. He lives in Seattle with his wife, law professor Kate O’Neill, their three daughters, two unruly dogs and a large unruly garden.

One project the committee is considering in conjunction with reading the book is constructing at the site of the former Third Ward School a sod house like that built by prairie settlers.

In November, “Talking Up a Storm” at the public library will feature area experts lecturing on topics addressed in the book – hypothermia, Mennonite culture and meteorology.

The committee will hold a holiday fair from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Dec. 6 for the sale of baked goods and knitted and quilted items as a fundraiser. Knitters and quilters interested in taking part in the project can contact Barb Bluhm at (814)362-6787 or Susan Sinclair at (814)362-1132.

In a cooperative venture with the committee, Bradford Little Theatre will present an original short play based on Ted Kouser’s book of poetry, “Blizzard Voices,” a collection of poems based on actual reminiscences of blizzard survivors. Cindy Matteson will direct. The play, to be presented Jan. 24, 2009, will be part of fundraising efforts for Laskin’s visit.

Shinaberger said the committee will also be working with the Bradford Area School District to tie in activities involving children in the community.

Twenty copies of “The Children’s Blizzard” are available for borrowing from the Bradford Area Public Library. The book is also on sale from local booksellers.

One Book Bradford was started last year by the Friends of the Bradford Area Public Library and the Pitt-Bradford Spectrum Series in conjunction with the Friends of the Hanley Library and members of 11 local book groups.

Aktion Club in Action Saturday

Bradford Aktion Club member Henry Keller shows where he’s scraped paint off a wooden racecar in Hanley Park Saturday, while Kiwanian Paula Vecellio, Aktion Club advisor, wields a broom to prepare the car for painting.
(Photo by Kimberly Marcott Weinberg

Members of two Kiwanis family clubs scraped and painted half of the wooden equipment in Hanley Park Saturday.

Joining the Kiwanis Club of Bradford in working on the project was the newly formed Aktion Club, a Kiwanis family service club for adults living with disabilities. Chip Comilla of the City of Bradford Parks and Recreation Department was on hand with supplies and helped direct volunteers. Kiwanian Michelle McCann worked with Comilla to organize the event.

It was the Aktion Club’s first service project.

“I loved it,” said Aktion Club president Mike Walter. “It went very well. Our members got a taste of what it’s like to be out in the community.”

The two clubs will return to the park Sept. 20 to finish the painting work.

In addition to the work day, the Kiwanis Club also purchased new wood chips for the park. Money for the wood chips came from proceeds of last year’s Kiwanis Kapers as well as a grant from the American Refining Group.

The Aktion Club is being jointly sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Bradford, Bradford Area High School Key Club and Evergreen Elm Inc. with financial support from Dallas-Morris Drilling Inc. and American Refining Group.

For more information on the Aktion Club, contact Kiwanis Aktion Club advisor Paula Vecellio.

Happy Birthday Chief!

Happy Birthday to
Bradford City Police Chief

Mike Close!

Presidential Race '08

Thanks to Solomon's Words for passing along this video:

Anne Holliday '08