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Friday, February 25, 2011

Casey Calls for Sanctions on Libya

WASHINGTON, DC— U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South and Central Asian Affairs, released the following statement today calling for sanctions to be imposed on Libya:

“I strongly condemn the deplorable violence employed by Colonel Qaddafi against peaceful demonstrators in Libya.

“Along with the international community, the United States should impose tough sanctions on Libya now and show Qaddafi that his barbaric actions violate the most basic norms of how a government should treat its citizens.

“In addition, the United Nations Security Council should examine the entire array of options available to it, potentially including a no-fly zone over Libya. The killing of innocent demonstrators must stop now.”

Cops: Boy Smashed Mom's Computer

A 15-year-old Little Valley boy has been arrested for smashing his mother’s computer on the floor.

Sheriff’s deputies say the incident happened at 6:30 last night in Little Valley.

The boy’s name has not been released. He was issued an appearance ticket for family court.

Bradford Police Look Into Hit & Run

Bradford City Police on Thursday were called to the scene of a hit and run on South Center Street, a parking problem on South Kendall Avenue, disabled vehicles on Davis and Boylston streets and a roadway obstruction on Route 219.

Police also received about a dozen requests to speak with an officer, assisted other agencies with several calls, attempted to serve a warrant and got a call about a lost wallet, according to the complaint report and request sheet.

More Camp Burglaries in Elk County

Police are investigating three more camp burglaries in Elk County.

The break-ins happened between November 30 and yesterday at camps along Route 555 in the Village of Grant in Benezette Township.

Police say the burglars pried doors open and broke windows to get in. Among the items taken was a Black & Decker cordless drill. The owners of the camps are from Massontown, Rockton and Grindstone.

UPDATE: Bradford Schools are Closed

Bradford Schools are closed today.


For the most up-to-date list, go to WESB.com


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Man Sentenced on Child Sex Charges

A Warren man has been sentenced to 60 months in prison for violating federal laws relating to the sexual exploitation of children.

46-year-old Christopher Scott Frederick was sentenced today in federal court in Erie.

Frederick received computer images depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

Watch the Shuttle Launch Live

Space shuttle Discovery lifts off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on its final flight today, ending nearly three decades of space travel. Watch live at CNN.com.


Mike Cejka's Forecast

Thursday Forecast from Meteorologist Mike Cejka: wivb.com



Raising Awareness About 'Blight Bill'

Senator David Argall (R-29) holds a news conference on efforts to educate the public and local elected officials about the state's new anti-blight law. He is joined by Elizabeth Hersh of the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania, Minersville Borough Infrastructure Manager Joe Bass, Gary Bender of the Schuylkill County Demolition Program and Jeff Feeser of Schuylkill Community Action.

Senate Bill 900, known as the Neighborhood Blight Revitalization and Reclamation Act, clarifies the identity of property owners and holds them responsible for the municipal costs to secure, remediate or demolish blighted structures. Municipalities may institute an action to prevent, restrain, correct or abate property code violations.

For more information go here: http://1490newsblog.blogspot.com/2010/10/blight-bill-becomes-law.html

Photo provided by Senate Republican Communications

Banning Brothels in Nevada?



Last Day at Pirate City

Today was final day of workouts at Pirate City. Mike Crotta, who played in Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis last year, is scheduled to pitch tomorrow against State College of Florida-Manatee.

Photo of James McDonald during fielding practice by Dave Arrigo, team photographer, and provided by the Pittsburgh Pirates

City Police Look into Disturbance, MVA

Bradford City Police on Wednesday were called to a disturbance at an East Main Street business and a motor vehicle accident on West Corydon Street, according to the complaint report and request sheet.

They received calls about criminal mischief and criminal mischief to a vehicle, both on Kiwanis Court. They had complaints about parking on Amm and Brennan streets, and parking and traffic on Euclid Avenue.

Officers also had several requests to speak with an officer, served three warrants, assisted other agencies on a couple of calls and checked on the welfare of a couple of people.

Theft at Metaldyne in Ridgway

Someone stole a number of items from Metaldyne Sintered Components in Ridgway during the last week.

State police say the theft happened between Friday and Wednesday.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact Ridgway-based state police.


Man Sentenced for Having Drugs in ANF

A man arrested during a visit to the Rainbow Gathering in the Allegheny National Forest in June has been sentenced to four months in federal prison for drug possession.

33-year-old Adam Zagger of Lakewood, Ohio, had what the US Attorney’s office calls a “veritable pharmacy of drugs” in a school bus that he converted into a camper. Specifically, he had marijuana, LSD, hashish, and methamphetamine. He pleaded guilty to the charges in September.

Zagger must also serve one year of supervised release after being released from prison, and must pay a $10,000 fine.

Study: 1.5 Million Jobs Linked to
Great Lakes; $62 Billion in Wages

A new study says more than one-and-a-half million US jobs and $62 billion in annual wages are linked directly to the Great Lakes.

The study released today says Michigan has nearly 523,000 jobs connected to the Great Lakes, more than any other state. Pennsylvania has more than 25,000 and New York has more than 157,000.

Most of the jobs are in manufacturing. Others are in tourism and recreation, shipping, agriculture and other sectors of the economy.

http://www.miseagrant.umich.edu/downloads/economy/11-708-Great-Lakes-Jobs.pdf


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Pirates Spring Training on Wednesday

Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Brad Lincoln eyes the plate as he gets ready to throw the ball today during spring training. The Pirates open the regular season April 1 at Wrigley Field against the Cubs.

Photo by Dave Arrigo, team photographer, and provided by the Pittsburgh Pirates

Senator Applauds Repeal of Rendell Policy

Harrisburg – State Sen. Mary Jo White (R-21), chairman of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, applauds Governor Corbett for repealing the policy of imposing additional restrictions on oil and gas drilling on state park and forest land as part of the state Department of Environmental Protection's standard well-permitting process.

"The Governor took the appropriate action in repealing the policy," said White. "As I outlined in my letter to Governor Rendell last November, the policy was irresponsible, and could potentially cost Pennsylvania taxpayers tens of millions of dollars from the impairment of existing contracts."

White added that by repealing the policy, Governor Corbett properly upheld a legal precedent set in the case of Belden & Blake Corporation v. DCNR, where the courts prohibited the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources from imposing surface use agreements and drilling conditions on permit applicants who owned the subsurface mineral rights underlying state park land.

"DEP has done a good job of working to ensure that natural gas is developed responsibly, and DCNR has negotiated and executed lease agreements which contain meaningful added protections for publicly-owned lands," said White. "However, if there is justification for general conditions on natural gas production on all state lands, these should be adopted by statute or regulation, and must adhere to settled case law."

Man Accused of Resisting Arrest

Police say they had to use a “stun drive” on a man six times after he allegedly brandished a knife and tried to start a fight at the Hotel Holley.

According to papers filed in District Judge Dominic Cercone’s office, police were called to the bar at 11:15 p.m. on December 1 for a man dressed in all black, brandishing a knife, harassing patrons and trying to start a fight.

They attempted to handcuff 26-year-old Mark Pessia but he became irate and started fighting with officers, so they used a stun drive on him. As they attempted to get him to his feet, he started fighting again. Police had to use the stun drive five more times.

Pessia is free on his own recognizance.

Accused Car Thieves Waive Hearings

Two men accused of stealing a car from Rochester Street earlier this month waived their preliminary hearings today.

19-year-old Ryan Johnston of Johnsonburg and 19-year-old James Hochstine of Bradford are accused of taking the car on the evening of February 3.

Police pulled them over a short time later on South Kendall Avenue, where Johnston admitted to driving the car away from Rochester Street, according to papers filed in District Judge Dominic Cercone’s office. Hochstine was his passenger.

They’re both free on unsecured bail.

Man Accused of Knocking Another
Man Unconscious During Bar Fight

A man accused of kicking another man in the face until he was unconscious is headed to McKean County Court.

Assault and other charges against 23-year-old James Bunce were bound to court following a hearing in front of District Judge Dominic Cercone.

At 2:13 a.m. on January 8, the day before Bunce’s birthday, police were called to the Hotel Holley for a bar fight. When they arrived they found two men on the floor, semi-conscious and bleeding from their faces and heads.

Witnesses said Bunce and his brother assaulted the other men and left just as police got there. Court papers said that Bunce punched one of the men in the face, knocked him to the ground and kicked him repeatedly in the head. The man’s friend tried to intervene but Bunce allegedly punched him in the head, knocked him to the ground and kicked him in the face until he was unconscious.

The second man suffered multiple fractures to his jaw, and a separated jaw, and had to be taken to UPMC Hamot for specialized treatment.

Bunce is free on bail.

Charges Against Woman Accused of
Hitting Child with Phone Bound to Court

Charges against a woman accused of throwing a cell phone that hit a 3-year-old boy in the head have been bound to court following a preliminary hearing in front of District Judge Dominic Cercone.

20-year-old Amber Moore got into a fight with another woman at the YWCA domestic violence shelter on the evening of January 8, according to papers filed in Cercone’s office. Police say when they arrived Moore was “screaming and acting highly combative” and would not calm down when they asked. Even after they handcuffed her, Moore allegedly continued to scream obscenities and slurs at police and the other woman in the shelter.

The incident started when Moore and another woman were having a verbal fight, but then Moore allegedly hit the woman in the face, causing bruising and swelling.

She also allegedly threw a cell phone at the other woman but missed and hit the toddler in the forehead, causing a laceration that needed stitches. Court papers say she threw the phone so hard it snapped in half when it hit the child.

Moore is free on bail.

State Upgrades Megan's Law Website

Harrisburg – Improvements to Pennsylvania’s Megan’s Law website will make it easier for the public to find information about registered sexual offenders in the state, acting State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan announced today.

The website is www.pameganslaw.state.pa.us.

“The site’s new features enhance the user’s ability to determine whether someone in their neighborhood is a registered sex offender,” Noonan said. “Parents and others can use this information to help protect themselves and their families.”

Noonan said the site includes a radius-search function that allows the user to enter an address; establish a search radius of a half-mile, one mile, three miles or five miles; and query the system for offenders who live or attend school within the designated radius. In response, the site returns a listing and map of offenders.

Users also can search for sexual offenders using drop-down lists of municipalities and counties. The site has a Soundex feature that takes a name entered by the user and provides a list of individuals with that name and with similar-sounding names.

“This means that even if a user misspells the name of an offender in the system, the new site will be more likely to make a match and provide information about the offender,” Noonan said.

He said the upgraded site features geocoding and Google mapping of offender addresses. The site continues to provide the most current photographs of offenders. As part of the upgrade, the system is now retaining each new photograph of offenders. These will be dated and displayed on the offender’s page.

“Citizens still can provide anonymous tips about the whereabouts of offenders using a “Submit a Tip” function,” Noonan said. “And the site includes more than 20 crime prevention links and information on topics ranging from Internet safety to victim resources.”

Noonan said state police hope to add an electronic community notification feature to the website that will allow users to receive public notifications about Megan’s Law offenders via e-mail or text messages using the state’s AlertPa system. He said action by the General Assembly would be required before such a feature can be enabled.

Pennsylvania's Megan's Law requires the State Police to create and maintain a registry of persons who live, work or attend school in the state and who have either been convicted of, entered a plea of guilty to, or adjudicated delinquent of certain sexual offenses in Pennsylvania or another jurisdiction. The full list of applicable offenses is available at the Megan’s Law website.

'He Coulda Cut Himself Up Real Good'



FAW Director to Attend Wilderness
Stewardship Conference in Las Vegas

WARREN -- Warren-based Friends of Allegheny Wilderness (FAW) executive director Kirk Johnson has been invited to attend the second annual wilderness stewardship conference facilitated by the fledgling National Wilderness Stewardship Alliance (NWSA). This year's conference will take place from March 10th through March 13th in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The mission of the recently-established NWSA is to "develop a growing network of volunteer-based organizations to provide stewardship for America's enduring resource of wilderness." The NWSA vision is to see each wilderness area in the National Wilderness Preservation System adopted by a wilderness organization dedicated to protecting the area through partnerships with government agencies charged with their management.

In addition to FAW's ongoing primary mission of seeking to protect substantial additional portions of the Allegheny National Forest (ANF) under the Wilderness Act of 1964, the non-profit organization has over the last ten years also devoted significant energy and resources to the stewardship of the ANF's existing Hickory Creek and Allegheny Islands Wilderness Areas.

Mr. Johnson is frequently invited to wilderness advocacy-oriented conferences on behalf of FAW. Since 2000, he has attended in conferences in Boulder, Colordao; Tucson, Arizona; Lake Tahoe, California; Asheville, North Carolina; Seattle, Washington; Los Angeles, California; numerous conferences in Washington, D.C.; and others.

This year's NWSA conference will include expert panels, keynote speakers, and hands-on workshops to provide wilderness groups with information to assist federal land management agencies in wilderness stewardship, and to build strong stewardship organizations. Mr. Johnson has been awarded a full scholarship from NWSA to enable him to represent FAW at the Las Vegas conference.

Mr. Johnson earned a B.A. degree in philosophy from Albion College, and a Master of Environmental Studies degree from The Evergreen State College. He has been the executive director of FAW, an organization he founded in 2001, for nearly ten years. FAW looks forward to continuing to work cooperatively with the U.S. Forest Service in stewardship of Hickory Creek, Allegheny Islands, and proposed ANF wilderness areas during 2011.

Friends of Allegheny Wilderness online: http://wwww.pawild.org

National Wildenress Stewardship Alliance online: http://www.nationalwildernessstewardshipalliance.org


New Forecast for 814 Area Code

The North American Numbering Plan Administration has pushed back the expected exhaust date for the 814 area code by two years, which may mean a delay in plans to change the number in the region.

The area code is now projected to run out of numbers in early 2015. The earlier forecast said available numbers would be gone by early 2013.

The administration says one reason for the change is that telephone-service providers in the 814 area-code region needed fewer new numbers in 2010 than they thought they would.

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission postponed a pre-hearing conference scheduled for Tuesday in Harrisburg to discuss when and where to hold public hearings and technical conferences about the 814 area code. Now, commissioners say they will take the new projection into consideration before deciding how to proceed.

The PUC had decided to split the region in two and assign the 582 area code to most of the western half of the region.

Bradford Hotel Gets New Life as Rookies

One of Bradford's biggest and most visible eyesores is getting new life as a sports bar.

The Bradford Hotel is being renovated and will soon be Rookies Sports Bar.

On Tuesday, Bradford City Council approved a $25,000 loan to the owners from the city's Economic Development Loan Program, and also approved the transfer of a liquor license from Bradford Township to Rookies.

Listen to last night's council meeting here.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Pitt-Bradford's 'One World' Cultural Festival Brings Bollywood to Bradford

Bollywood will be coming to Bradford at the ‘One World’ Cultural Festival Saturday night (Feb. 26) at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.

The Naach Sensation Dance Company will be the featured entertainer at the popular festival, which also features an international sampling buffet, parade of nations and activity booths. Festivities begin at 6:30 p.m. in Frame-Westerberg Commons with the opening of the buffet line and the booth display area. Those dining are asked to bring a dish to pass or make a $5 donation.

The event lasts until 9:30 p.m.

The Naach Sensation Dance Company was started by Sonalee Vyas, who specializes in traditional and contemporary East Indian “Bollywood” dance styles.

“Bollywood” is the informal term popularly used for the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbai, India.

Vyas has more than 15 years’ experience as a professional dancer, instructor and choreographer and tours extensively performing for campus audiences, corporate clients, and community and civic organizations.

A student group of Bollywood dancers led by Rev Jangiti and Morgan Kinville will perform as well.

Others participating include Japanese ikebana flower arranging demonstrated by visiting professor Dr. Fumio Kobayashi of the Yokohama College of Commerce, Pitt-Bradford’s sister school in Japan. Another YCC professor, Dr. Morio Arimoto, will travel from Japan to participate in the festival, demonstrating the game “Go.”

Several groups were inspired by this year’s emphasis on India. Student Activities Council will sponsor a booth with henna painting, the Enchanted Mountain Weaver’s Guild will feature cotton spinning from India, and a poster presentation will feature messages of nonviolence from Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Outside of the buffet, international tastings will be available in the form of flambé from the Hospitality Club, sushi from the Anthropology Club, and a taste of Mexico from the Nontraditional Student Association.

Other activities include face painting by the Art Club, a “What Do You Know About Asia?” quiz from the Asian Student Alliance, basket making with the Division of Management and Education, a drum circle, and more.

The Commons Café will also be decorated with flags representing the nations Pitt-Bradford students call home. This year, the flags represent the nations of Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cameroon, Canada, China, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guinea, Haiti, India, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Poland, Senegal, Singapore, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States and Vietnam.

The Cultural Festival first began as a student celebration of Black History Month initiated by the Black Action Committee in the mid-1990s.

In addition to the festival steering committee, this year’s contributors include the Anthropology and International Cultures Club, the Behavioral and Social Sciences Division, Communications and the Arts Division, Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, Management and Education Division, Metz and Associates, Nontraditional Student Association, Office of the President, Student Activities Council, Student Government Association, Study Abroad and International Studies and Togi’s Restaurant.

For disability related needs, contact the Office of Disability Resources and Services at 814-362-7609 or clh71@pitt.edu.

Pictured, Sonalee Vyas, founder of Naach Sensation Dance Company, which will perform at the ‘One World’ Cultural Festival at Pitt-Bradford Saturday.
Photo courtesy of Pitt-Bradford



Tuesday at Pirates Spring Training

Andrew McCutchen rounds the bases during the Pittsburgh Pirates spring training in Florida. Below, Pirates general manager Neal Huntington talks with Bradford native Kyle Stark, the Pirates' director of player development.


Photos by Dave Arrigo, team photographer, and provided by the Pittsburgh Pirates

CARE for Children Offers Day of Skiing

CARE for Children, along with instructors from The Lounsbury Adaptive Ski Program, offered an adaptive ski clinic at Holiday Valley Ski Resort in Ellicottville, NY on Monday.

Through the Lounsbury program, a chapter of Disabled Sports/USA, certified ski instructors provide expert coaching and instruction to children of varying abilities. The program also provides a wide-range of adaptive equipment to meet the needs of each individual participant.

The Lounsbury Program received a grant from the Enterprise Foundation, which funded the ski passes, lessons and lunch for the ten children taking part. Transportation and snacks were provided by the Port Allegany Rotary Club.

The adaptive ski clinic is just one of many therapeutic recreation programs that CARE for Children offers kids of all abilities. For more information on this or any other service offered by CARE, visit the website at www.careforchildren.info.

Photo courtesy of CARE for Children

Senator Young Receives FFA's Top Award

ALBANY – Senator Catharine Young (R,I,C – Olean), was presented with the National FFA Organization’s Honorary American Degree recently by members of FFA’s New York Chapter during a special ceremony held in Albany.

The degree is the highest honorary award presented by the FFA in recognition of those who advance agricultural education and the FFA through their outstanding personal commitment.

“As the State President of the NYS FFA, it is encouraging that Senator Young is dedicated to farming, and ensuring that our young people have career opportunities. Her background of growing up on a farm gives her insight into the critical issues that are most important to the FFA,” said Mary Foote, NYS FFA President.

According to J.W. Allen, NY FFA District 6 President, "Senator Young has received this award which shows our appreciation of her inspiration to young people. It truly is an honor for Senator Young to represent us so well in Albany because young people from rural backgrounds can recognize just how much they can achieve.”

As Chair of the Rural Resources Commission, Senator Young is responsible for tackling issues and concerns facing the farming community. Throughout her public service, she has worked hand-in-hand with leaders of the State’s agricultural industries to streamline and expand agricultural programs in the State.

“If agriculture is to remain New York’s top industry, then we need to do all that we can to support our future generation farmers. I am deeply honored by this recognition, and intend to do everything I possibly can to encourage students to grow, achieve, and establish themselves in what I hope to be vibrant agricultural careers right here in New York,” said Senator Young.

The National FFA Organization is a dynamic youth leadership organization founded in 1928 that strives to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.

Today, the FFA is one of the largest youth organizations in the United States, with over 520,000 members in 7,439 chapters throughout all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

Pictured, Senator Catharine Young was presented recently with the National Future Farmers of America (FFA) Organization’s Honorary American Degree by members of FFA’s New York Chapter during a special ceremony held in Albany. Pictured from left to right are: Joshua Draves (FFA Sentinel), Brandon Aldous (State Treasurer), Senator Young, Mary Elizabeth Foote (FFA State President) and J.W. Allen (District 6 President)
Photo courtesy of Young's office

Co-Founder of Mactech Mineral
Management, Robert Macfarlane, Died

Robert M. Macfarlane Sr., 85, formerly of 40 Main Street, Lewis Run, passed away, Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011 at The Pavilion at BRMC.

Born September 3, 1925, in Oil City, he was a son of the late William and Margaret (Carlson) Macfarlane.

On June 28, 1947 in Our Mother of Perpetual Help Church in Lewis Run he married Olga M. (Pelino) Macfarlane who died on July 15, 2003.

Mr. Macfarlane was a 1951 graduate of St. Bonaventure University with a bachelors degree in chemistry. He attended the Atomic Energy Commission School at Oak Ridge Tennessee in 1957 where he studied nuclear radiation.

He joined the United States Navy on March 26,1943, served on the USS Cod during WWII in the submarine service. He and his unit were awarded the Presidential Citation of Honor with three combat stars, and he was honorably discharged on April 6, 1946.

In 1950, Mr. Macfarlane accepted a position with the Pennsylvania Grade Crude Oil Association Research Laboratory, located in Bradford, PA. In 1955 he was employed by Dresser Industries Research Laboratory for a period of one year. From 1956 to 1961, he was associated with Birdwell Inc. as a research engineer and later division engineer.

Mr. Macfarlane was vice president of Piper Wells Surveys, Inc. a position he held from 1962 to 1968. In 1969 he joined Quaker State Oil Refining Corporation as a district engineer, continuing to district manager, then operations manager of the corporation's production and pipelines, retiring in 1986. In 1987 he co-founded Mactech Mineral Management Inc. with his son James.

Mr. Macfarlane has authored and co-authored several technical papers on secondary recovery techniques and nuclear logging. He was a member of A.I.M.E., The American Chemical Society, The Society of Professional Well Log Analysis and The Society of Petroleum Engineers where he was awarded the distinction of Legion of Honor Member in 2005.

Surviving are two daughters Patricia Alexis of Derrick City and Diane Wizeman of Corning, NY; three sons: Robert M. Macfarlane of Bradford, James J. Macfarlane of Bradford, and Stephen M. Macfarlane of Springboro; twelve grandchildren: Jonathon Wizeman, Dean Alexis, Grant Alexis, Kyle Macfarlane, Alexander Macfarlane, Stephen Macfarlane, Jamie Greenwood, Laurie Wizeman, Heather Macfarlane, Ashton Macfarlane, Katherine Macfarlane, Caroline Macfarlane; and three great grandchildren: Mia Wizeman, Wyatt Greenwood, and Bayla Greenwood; two brothers George Macfarlane of Bradford and Michael Macfarlane of Victoria, TX; and several nieces and nephews.

Family will be receiving friends on Thursday, February 24, 2011 from 11:00am to 12:30pm in the Hollenbeck-Cahill Funeral Homes, Inc., East Main Street, at which time a prayer service will be held followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 1:00pm in St. Bernard Church with Rev. Leo Gallina, pastor as Celebrant. Military honors will be accorded in the church after the mass. Mausoleum entombment will be in St. Bernard Cemetery.

Memorials if desired may be made to the McKean County SPCA, the McKean County CARE for Children or the charity of the donor's choice.

On line condolences may be made at www.hollenbeckcahill.com

PA's 330th Birthday to be Commemorated

Harrisburg – The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission will honor the commonwealth’s 330th birthday by displaying the original Penn Charter in an exhibit that will open on Charter Day, Sunday, March 13, at The State Museum in Harrisburg.

The Charter, in which Britain’s King Charles II granted the land that is now Pennsylvania to founder William Penn, is sometimes referred to as the state’s “birth certificate.” It was Penn’s personal copy.

“A priceless document cared for by the State Archives, the charter possesses so much meaning to the commonwealth and its residents,” said Barbara Franco, PHMC executive director. “The fragile historical parchment is exhibited in a special protective Plexiglas case with low light and temperature levels.”

The exhibit will also feature Penn’s Great Law of 1682 and the 1698 William Penn Family Bible, which was used by Gov. Tom Corbett in taking the oath of office. Franco said the Great Law established liberty of conscience, extended manhood suffrage and limited the death penalty to relatively few offenses.

On Charter Day, programming runs from noon to 4 p.m. Admission is free, including visits to the Curiosity Connection and the Planetarium. Guests can also greet William Penn as portrayed by William Kushatus, meet Pennsylvania’s 2010 National History Day Winners or take in a lecture on the history of the state’s forests.

Visitors can also learn about Victorian life with the Victorian Dance Ensemble and hear tales of bygone days as Pennsylvania Jack tells stories full of characters from the Keystone State. PHMC staff and professionals from the region’s many historical societies will also be available to answer questions.

In addition to The State Museum’s programming, many sites along the Pennsylvania Trails of History® will offer free admission on March 13. Participating sites include: Brandywine Battlefield, Conrad Weiser Homestead, Cornwall Iron Furnace, Daniel Boone Homestead, Drake Well Museum, Eckley Miners’ Village, Ephrata Cloister, Erie Maritime Museum, Graeme Park, Joseph Priestley House, Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum, Old Economy Village, Pennsbury Manor, Pennsylvania Military Museum, Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania and Washington Crossing Historic Park.

For more information on Charter Day 2011, call (717) 772-3257 or visit the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission online at www.phmc.state.pa.us. The special exhibit will run through March 20. After March 13, regular admission rates will apply.

The State Museum of Pennsylvania, located at 300 North Street, Harrisburg, is one of 25 historic sites and museums on the Pennsylvania Trails of History® administered by the Historical and Museum Commission.

Pictured, "Colonel" Edwin L. Drake (right) and his good friend Peter Wilson, a Titusville pharmacist, in front of the historic Drake well in 1861. This was the second derrick and engine house - the first one burned down in 1859. Photo by renowned oilfield photographer John A. Mather, courtesy of the Drake Well Museum, Titusville. Provided by the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

Gadhafi: I Will Be a Martyr



Dr. Drew Talks About 'Kids for Cash'



Bradford Area Public Library Looking for
'Creative' Ways to Raise Money

By ANNE HOLLIDAY
WESB/WBRR News Director


The Bradford Area Public Library will have to come up with creative ways to raise money.

That’s according to Ed Pecht, treasurer of the library’s board of trustees, which held its annual meeting Monday evening.

Pecht explained that 85 percent of the library’s funding comes from government agencies – the state, city, Bradford Area School District, Bradford, Foster and Lafayette townships and Lewis Run Borough. But funding from the state – the biggest supporter – has dropped by 29 percent, which he said is devastating. All together, funding has dropped off by 39 percent.

He explained that library got a technology grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, federal grant money for implementation of the One Screen McKean project, which tied all the McKean County libraries together, as well as other restricted-use grants. That money was substantial, he said, explaining that by using that money other money was freed up.

But that money is not available anymore. Now the challenge is to fund projects and keep the library up and running.

“What we’re going to do is depend on our creativity and our tenacity to find other funding sources,” Pecht said. “We just simply have to get creative. There is no conventional method of funding. We’re a public library, so we can’t have a ticket booth at the front door.”

He said last year’s budget was $257,000 but expenses came to $271,000, leading the library to reduce its operating hours and have fewer people working fewer hours. That added up to a 23 percent cut in expenses.

But those kinds of cuts are not sustainable, he said.

“The general economic environment is so bad for families that they’re depending more on the library for services,” he said, adding that the library becomes the educational, informational and recreational source for families.

“As the economic vice tightens on the community, they’re going to depend more on the library,” he said.

“One of the things this board has to do … is not only make up the shortfall, we have to add about another $20,000 to that and we have to do that so we can extend the hours and really complete the mission we’ve adopted as a board,” Pecht said.

“It’s imperative that we make that up … and $30,000 isn’t going to fall out of the sky,” he said, adding there’s no government agency in any kind of financial shape to step up to the plate and offer money so they’ve got to do it on their own.

“There’s no doubt we can do that,” he said. “We’re, right now, a really good library. We want to be a really great library.”

Among the projects the board is looking to take on this year is refurbishing the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, according to board member Mike Pfeil, chairman of the buildings and grounds committee.

Both the building and the system are 20 years old, and numerous repairs have already been done to the air conditioning system.

Among the projects completed last year were re-carpeting the central hallway, repaving the entrance driveway, resealing the parking lot, refurbishing public restrooms and replacing the message sign with the new electronic sign, Pfeil said.

Library personnel are also trying to come up with ways to trim operating expenses.

Library director Linda Newman explained that they’ve saved a significant amount of money on paper by changing the way they do sign-in sheets for meetings and events, among other things. They also have their own postage meter, which saves money.

Newman also gave an update on the many children’s programs the library offers, adding that they emphasis these programs “because children are our future.”

She mentioned that they will be participating in Read Across America next week for Dr. Seuss’s birthday; the spring petting zoo will be held on Good Friday; the bookmark contest celebrated its 10th anniversary; and they are also working with Penn State Cooperative Extension and the Pfeiffer Nature Center.

In conjunction with the annual Derby Gala, which raises money for the library’s endowment fund, they will be doing the Kids Derby again this year.

“We’re always looking for new programs," she said.

Katie Nussbaum gave a technology update and said the library now has 10 computers for public use as well as two additional computers in the children’s room. The library also has two iPads for public use.

She also explained that the Bradford library – the biggest in the county – is part of the online integrated library system which allows people in any community in the county to borrow books from any library.

Other libraries in One Screen McKean are Friends Memorial Library in Kane, Hamlin Memorial Library in Smethport, Mount Jewett Memorial Library and Samuel W. Smith Memorial Library in Port Allegany.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Unrest in Libya



Bucs Owner: Things Must Change

Pittsburgh Pirates owner Bob Nutting held a meeting with players today and said things have to change, according to information provided to WESB and The HERO by the Pirates.

Later, Nutting told reporters it’s critically important that the players and staff understand that 2011 is not going to be a year where small bits of incremental progress are going to be adequate.

The Pirates finished 57-105 last season. This was the franchise's 18th consecutive losing season, a record for major professional sports in North America. The 57 wins were the fewest in Pittsburgh since 1952.

Pictured, Nutting talking with Pirates manager Clint Hurdle.
Photo provided by the Pirates and taken by David Arrigo, team photographer.



Mom Lashes Out at Ciavarella