Showing posts from February 27, 2011

Flood, Winter Storm Watches

A Winter Storm Watch has been added to the flood watch.

The flood watch is still in effect until 10 o’clock tonight but, the National Weather Service says the heavy rain will change to a period of mixed precipitation early Sunday morning, then will change to heavy snow from late Sunday morning into Sunday night.

6 to 12 inches of snow is possible between 7 a.m. Sunday and late Sunday night.

Phillies Rally to Beat Pirates

The Philadelphia Phillies rallied for a 7-4 victory today in Grapefruit League play.

The Pirates had taken a 4-3 lead in the sixth as Neil Walker scored on Garrett Jones' groundout and Andy Marte's second RBI, a double.

The Phillies rallied for three runs in the seventh and added an insurance run in the eighth.

Lyle Overbay had an RBI single for the Pirates in the first inning and Marte added an RBI single in the fourth.

The Pirates will play the Phillies again Saturday in Clearwater at 1:05 p.m.

Photo of Lyle Overbay by Dave Arrigo, and provided by the Pittsburgh Pirates

SBU Honored by Arbor Day Foundation

St. Bonaventure University has earned Tree Campus USA recognition for 2010, capping a year-long effort to demonstrate its commitment to promoting healthy management of its campus forests and engaging the campus community in that effort.

Launched in 2008 by the nonprofit Arbor Day Foundation, Tree Campus USA recognizes colleges and universities that annually meet program standards aimed at creating a more environmentally friendly and aesthetically pleasing campus, and instilling pride in the campus community.

“By encouraging its students to plant trees and participate in service that will help the environment, St. Bonaventure is making a positive impact on its community that will last for decades,” said John Rosenow, chief executive and founder of the Arbor Day Foundation.

The designation means St. Bonaventure meets Tree Campus USA’s five core standards of tree care and community engagement: establishing a campus tree advisory committee; evidence of a campus tree-care plan; dedicated …

Six Players Chosen for Big 30 Game

Six players have been chosen for the 38th annual “Big 30 Don Raabe Charities Classic football game that is scheduled for Saturday, August 6, 2011 at Parkway Field in Bradford.

You can also hear the game on 1490 WESB, 100.1 The HERO and at

The first 37 games have produced nearly 1.4 million dollars which have been given to numerous charities and personal causes throughout the Twin Tiers.

The players chosen are:

John Mistretta
Running Back
Southwestern Central School
Height: 5’ 7” Weight: 185 lbs.

John was named First Team All League and First Team All State for the 2010 Season and was named Co-M.V.P. in the sectional championship game, as well as, Offensive M.V.P. in the 2008 State Championship Game. Southwestern won two State titles during John’s playing career and he lists those as his greatest thrills on the gridiron. His future plan is to continue his education at a four year college and become a physical education teacher. John is a fan of the Oakland Raiders and lists his …

Thompson Votes to Halt 1099
Small Business Reporting Requirement

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, R-Howard an original cosponsor of H.R. 4, a measure repealing the authority of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to require that businesses report every expense they incur over $600, voted in favor of the bill earlier today.

Passage of H.R. 4, which gained unanimous support from House Republicans and 76 Democrats, comes as federal courts continue to challenge the new law, with most recently a U.S. District Court ruling the health care law unconstitutional. Thompson issued the following statement after final passage:

“Many of my initial concerns are now becoming a reality as this law has caused great uncertainty for businesses.

The 1099 requirement would be death by a 1000 paper cuts for Pennsylvania’s small businesses. Any typical small business in a given year may have hundreds of vendors and be faced with thousands of transactions, and these burdensome regulations hamper job growth and undermine our path to economic recovery.…

PA Wilds Offers Grants to Help
Businesses with New Signage

A popular mini-grant program that helps businesses in the Pennsylvania Wilds region pay for new business signage has re-opened and is accepting applications through April 15.

The PA Wilds Business Signage Grants are designed to encourage businesses in the Pennsylvania Wilds to improve their prospects – and the look and feel of their communities – by utilizing the Pennsylvania Wilds Design Guide in the creation and construction of new signage.

The Design Guide is a voluntary planning document that highlights how communities in the region can protect or enhance their rural character as they grow – whether that growth is due to tourism, drilling or other industries. It promotes such things as using natural materials or themes the region is known for – wood, stone, water, wildlife – in construction, design or landscaping.

“The region’s rural and historic character and strong sense of place is part of what makes the Pennsylvania Wilds attractive to visitors and residents, so it is important f…

Russian National Ballet Returns to
Bradford with 'Romeo and Juliet'

The Russian National Ballet Theatre will return to Bradford with a performance of “Romeo and Juliet” on Tuesday, March 15, at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.

The renowned ballet troupe, which presented a sold-out show at the campus in 2009, will perform its rendition of William Shakespeare’s classic love story starting at 7:30 p.m. in Bromeley Family Theater in Blaisdell Hall. Cost is $28 to $32 for the public, and $12 to $14 for students. The performance is part of the university’s Prism series.

Nearly 30 dancers will perform in the full-length, two-scene “Romeo and Juliet” with music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Marius Petipa designed the original choreography.

Before “Romeo and Juliet” is staged, the Russian National Ballet Theatre will perform “Chopiniana,” a short set of dances put to music composed by Frédéric François Chopin, followed by an intermission.

“Russian National Ballet production of ‘The Sleeping Beauty’ was a sold-out show, which told us that we had an underser…

NFL Lockout Deadline Hours Away

UPDATE: The players' union and the NFL have agreed to a 24-hour extension in labor talks.

Pirates Beat Blue Jays in Florida

The Pirates beat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-1 today in Grapefruit League play.

Pitcher Charlie Morton gave up two hits, an earned run, struck out two batters and didn't walk any in three innings. Brad Lincoln worked the fourth, fifth and sixth innings and retired the side in order all three times. He had one strikeout.

Tyler Yates and Jeff Locke each worked an inning without giving up a hit.

The Pirates are at home in Bradenton, Fla., at 1:05 p.m. tomorrow against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Pictured, Jason Jaramillo, who hit two doubles today.
Photo by Dave Arrigo and provided by the Pittsburgh Pirates

Mistrial Declared in Orie Corruption Case

A judge has declared a mistrial in the public corruption case against state Senator Jane Orie and her sister after he agreed with prosecutors who argued documents entered into evidence by the defense were doctored.

Allegheny County Judge Jeffrey Manning declared the mistrial after a prosecution witness testified that documents bearing the signature of a key prosecution witness had been cut and pasted from another document.

Orie and her sister, Janine, are charged with using the senator's staff to perform illegal campaign and fundraising work for the senator and a third sister, Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin.

Melvin has not been charged.

Casey Encouraged by Drop in
PA's Unemployment Rate

WASHINGTON, DC— U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), released the following statement in response to new employment figures released today by Pennsylvania’s Department of Labor and Industry, which showed a significant drop in the unemployment rate:

“The drop in the unemployment rate for Pennsylvania, from 8.5 percent in December 2010 to 8.2 percent in January 2011, is a positive sign that the Pennsylvania economy continues on the path to recovery. The manufacturing sector, a bright spot in our recovery, added 4,100 jobs – the single largest increase since June 2000. We are seeing an increase of jobs in the Construction, Education & Health Services and Mining & Logging sectors that point to companies hiring new employees.

“Tomorrow, national employment figures for February 2011 will be released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and I hope the economic indicators continue to point toward an economic recovery across the nation.

“However, …

Sen. Young: NY Bike License Plan Pulled

ALBANY – After increasing pressure from lawmakers, families, bicycle shop owners and bike enthusiasts from across the state, two proposals from the New York City-controlled Assembly that would require bicycles in the state to be licensed were withdrawn today, according to Senator Catharine Young (R,I,C – Olean)

The two proposals, introduced by Assemblyman Michael DenDekker of Queens, would have required all bicycles to be inspected and registered. Riders would have been required to pay a one-time cost of $25 for a license plate for their personal bikes, with a $5 renewal fee each year. Those who ride commercial bikes would pay $50, and also would have to buy insurance.

“These type of ideas are emblematic of Albany at its worst. If downstate legislators can tax something, they will try to do it. There is no more room to impose any additional costs on the already overburdened taxpayers of this state. I am glad the people have spoken out about this ridiculous measure. W…

Wagner: Use Tobacco Settlement Money to
Fund adultBasic Health Insurance

HARRISBURG – Auditor General Jack Wagner today recommended that Gov. Corbett and the General Assembly use incoming tobacco settlement dollars as intended to provide adultBasic health insurance to Pennsylvanians who don’t qualify for Medicaid. He said that $1.34 billion in tobacco settlement funds have already been quietly diverted from the uses originally intended by the Tobacco Settlement Act of 2001.

More than 40,000 Pennsylvanians lost the state-subsidized health coverage Feb. 28 when the state shuttered the program for enrollees who couldn’t afford private health insurance but earned too much to qualify for Medicaid. An additional 500,000 Pennsylvanians were on a waiting list for the program when it was shut down.

In a special report issued at a press conference today, Wagner noted that the $1.34 billion in diverted funds represents 30 percent of the Tobacco Settlement Fund payments received since 1999. The diversions, which include $432 million to the general fund for unspecified …

Wedding Belles Contest Underway

WESB and 100.1 The HERO's annual Wedding Belles contest got underway Wednesday with a reception held at the Masonic Center on South Avenue.

For more information about the contest, and the brides and grooms, go here.

Over the last two years, the contest has helped pump more than $2 million into the local economy. We have no doubt this year's group of brides will go over the $1 million mark, too.

Tops Market in Bradford provided cupcakes, sandwiches and other snacks.

Brides-to-be chat with Deb from The Paper Factory.

Photographer Shawn Murray chats with bride-to-be Amy Perry.

A bride and groom look to see what Custom Creations has to offer.

Snipes' Lawyers File with Supreme Court

Lawyers for Wesley Snipes have filed a petition asking the US Supreme Court to examine claims he was wrongly tried, and that prosecutors should have met a higher standard of proof.

In December Snipes began serving a three-year sentence at FCI-McKean for failure to file income tax returns.

Snipes was convicted in 2008 on three misdemeanor counts of willful failure to file income tax returns. Several last minute appeals were denied.

Photo from Wikipedia

Arrest Made for 2006 Potter County Fire

A Harrison Valley man is facing charges in connection to a fire that happened in 2006.

Police say their investigation led to the arrest of 26-year-old Peter Zehr on charges of arson, burglary, conspiracy to commit arson, criminal mischief, criminal trespassing and theft.

He was arraigned and is free on $50,000 bail. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Monday in front of District Judge Delores Bristol.

Brian Farleigh of Hazelton owned the Harrison Valley cabin that was burned to the ground on June 20, 2006. Police said an ATV was used to break into the cabin and garage.

State Police fire marshal Cpl. Nicholas Loffredo says the case remains open and further arrests are possible. Anyone with information on the case is asked to call state police at Montoursville.

Fatal Crash in Cattaraugus County

A Great Valley man is dead after an accident Wednesday afternoon on Chapel Hill Road in the Town of Allegany.

Sheriff’s deputies say 63-year-old James Dornan of Irish Hill Road suffered severe head trauma when his car went out of control near Pumpkin Hollow Road, hit a guardrail, crossed the road, went into a ditch and turned over.

He died at Olean General Hospital. Deputies say he was not wearing a seatbelt.

Interesting Code Enforcement Story
From York, Pa.

The York City Council Tuesday, by a vote of 5-0, approved a new ordinance prohibiting furniture specifically designed for indoor use from being placed outside. The ordinance is intended to combat rodent infestation and is identical to one adopted by Lancaster City, said York City Fire Chief and acting code enforcement officer Steven Buffington.

Read the full story at York

PUC Reviewing New Area Code Info

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission is reviewing last week’s announcement that the 814 area code will not run out of numbers as soon as originally predicted.

The North American Numbering Plan Administration has pushed back the expected exhaust date for the 814 area code by two years – from 2013 to 2015.

The PUC says it will plan formal action at an upcoming regularly scheduled meeting. The next two meetings are scheduled for March 17 and 31.

The original plan was to assign the 582 area code to McKean, Elk, Jefferson, Erie and parts of several other counties.

After receiving more than 40 petitions against the plan, the commission decided to reconsider, and to gather more public input.

SCOTUS Rules in Favor of Kansas Church

Washington (CNN) -- A Kansas church known for its angry, anti-gay protests at funerals of U.S. troops won an appeal Wednesday at the Supreme Court in a case testing the competing constitutional rights of free speech and privacy.

Read the full story at

U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today released the following statement in response to today’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the Snyder v. Phelps case:

“I am disappointed that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled against the right of families of fallen troops to commemorate and grieve peacefully and privately,” said Senator Casey. “I supported the case filed by Albert Snyder through an amicus brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court. In light of this ruling, I hope that protesters would change their minds and respect the brave men and women who sacrifice their lives to protect our freedom.”

Last year, Senator Casey signed on to an amicus brief filed to support the Supreme Court case to protect the right of families to not have military…

Busy Tuesday, So Far, for City Police

March came in like lion for Bradford City Police. Officers investigated a burglary on Congress Street, a suspicious package on Chestnut Street and a motor vehicle accident in Union Square, according to the complaint report and request sheet.

Officers were also called to reports of a theft from a vehicle on Davis Street, a theft on Bushnell Street, a parking complaint on Summer Street and a vehicle complaint at Cornen Street and Bagley Alley.

They also got reports of harassment and disorderly conduct on Main Street and … snow in the road on Amm Street.

Senator Casey: Protect CDBG Program

WASHINGTON, DC— U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today joined John A. Garner, Jr., Executive Director of the Pennsylvania League of Cities and Municipalities, to call to protect the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. Funding from the CDBG program is used for many things in Pennsylvania, including promoting economic development, community revitalization and job creation. Senator Casey and Garner expressed their concerns in a letter to the Chair and Ranking Member of each the Senate Committee on Appropriations and the Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies.

“We write today to express our grave concerns about proposals to reduce funding for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program in both fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2012,” Senator Casey and John Garner wrote in the letter. “This program has been instrumental in helping local communities in Pennsylvania promote economic development and job creation. The proposed funding re…

Toomey Act Gets Support, But is Tabled

Today, the Senate voted on the Full Faith and Credit Act, introduced as an amendment to the Patent Reform Act by Senators Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) and David Vitter (R-La.). The vote to table the amendment was 52-47.

The Full Faith and Credit Act would ensure that the U.S. government would not default on its debt under any circumstances. The legislation would allow Congress to engage in a level-headed debate about the best way to cut spending and institute structural spending reforms as part of the larger discussion surrounding raising the debt ceiling.

Taking the possibility of default off the table will also protect the millions of Americans who hold U.S. securities as part of their 401(k) plans, pension plans, and retirement savings and keep consumer and small business borrowing costs at stable levels. In addition, the amendment would prioritize Social Security payments to help ensure American seniors are protected in case the debt ceiling is not immediately raised.

“I am encouraged by th…

Casella Aquires McKean County Landfill

Casella Waste Systems of Vermont has acquired the landfill in McKean County for half a million dollars in cash, and the assumption of certain contractual obligations.

The company estimates the net present value of assumed contractual obligations and closure and post closure liabilities at about $4.2 million. The deal was finalized on Thursday, and was announced today.

Casella chairman and CEO John Casella says acquiring the landfill out of bankruptcy proceedings adds a great strategic asset in the company’s western region, and allows Casella to minimize transportation costs and maximize permit utilization.

Award-Winning Trio Simple Gifts at SBU

Three women plus 12 instruments equals one good time when the trio Simple Gifts takes the stage at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 11, in the sixth concert of the Friends of Good Music season at St. Bonaventure University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts.

Drawing on an impressive variety of ethnic folk styles, this award-winning trio plays everything from lively Irish jigs and down-home American reels to hard-driving Klezmer frailachs and haunting Gypsy melodies, spicing the mix with the distinctive rhythms of Balkan dance music, the lush sounds of Scandinavian twin fiddling, and original compositions written in a traditional style.

Combining tradition with innovation, Simple Gifts creates some of the finest arrangements in folk music today: swing fiddle creeps into a Romanian dance, spoons show up in an Irish reel, and the concertina ventures far beyond styles considered traditional for that instrument.

Based in the hills of Pennsylvania, the trio – Linda Littleton, Rachel Hall and Karen …

Sen. Toomey's Maiden Speech


Pirates Beat Yankees 2-0

The Pittsburgh Pirates beat the New York Yankees 2-0 this afternoon in Grapefruit League play in Bradenton, Florida.

Pirates pitching gave up just four hits. Former first round pick Daniel Moskos worked a hitless ninth for the Pirates.

It was a Yankees traveling squad that did not include Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez or Mark Teixeira.

The Pirates play again Wednesday at McKechnie Field when the Minnesota Twins visit at 1:05 p.m. Right-handed pitcher Ross Ohlendorf is scheduled to make his first spring training start.

Pictured, Pirates pitcher James McDonald gets his first start of the spring. He went the standard (for early spring training) two innings and gave up two hits.
Photo by Dave Arrigo and provided by the Pittsburgh Pirates

U.S. Air Force Band of Liberty's
New England Winds to Perform at SBU

The U.S. Air Force Band of Liberty’s New England Winds will perform at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 8, at St. Bonaventure University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. Presented by the Quick Center and the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps at St. Bonaventure, the concert is free and open to the public.

The New England Winds have been recognized by audiences throughout the northeastern United States for their passionate and refined performances. Concert goers have been treated to a challenging repertoire with music from the Baroque era to newly commissioned works.

Whether performing at small stage recitals or the International Double Reed Convention, the quintet creates an intimate musical setting through its versatility, its compelling and expressive music-making, and its ability to interact with listeners. Every member of the quintet is a dedicated chamber player with years of study on his or her instrument.

This outstanding musical group is on tour from Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass. Th…

Man Charged in Illegal Dumping Case
Related to Natural Gas Drilling

HARRISBURG - A Venango County man is facing illegal dumping charges following an investigation into the disposal of gas well production brine into abandoned wells.

Acting Attorney General Bill Ryan identified the defendant as William Henderson, 53, 16899 Jerusalem Corners Road, Pleasantville, Venango County. Henderson is the owner of Titusville Oil & Gas, Inc.

Ryan said that Titusville Oil & Gas conducts various oil and gas exploration activities in Allegheny Township, Venango County and owns a tank battery located on the Seaton JDB Lease along State Route 36.

According to the criminal complaint, in September 2010 Henderson placed a discharge pipe from the Seaton JDB Lease to an adjacent abandoned oil well owned by a competitor.

The charges state that the pipe Henderson ran to the abandoned well ruptured and caused a significant amount of production brine to discharge onto the ground. Brine is gas well production water.

Investigators later discovered another discharge pipe connect…

Saporito Completes USN Basic Training

Navy Seaman Recruit Mark A. Saporito, son of Diane P. Saporito of Warren, Pa. and Mark A. Saporito, Sr of Bradford, Pa., recently completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill.

During the eight-week program, Saporito completed a variety of training which included classroom study and practical instruction on naval customs, first aid, firefighting, water safety and survival, and shipboard and aircraft safety. An emphasis was also placed on physical fitness.

The capstone event of boot camp is "Battle Stations". This exercise gives recruits the skills and confidence they need to succeed in the fleet. "Battle Stations" is designed to galvanize the basic warrior attributes of sacrifice, dedication, teamwork and endurance in each recruit through the practical application of basic Navy skills and the core values of Honor, Courage and Commitment. Its distinctly ''Navy'' flavor was designed to take into account what it means t…

Castille Provides Update on Reforms
Resulting from 'Kids for Cash' Scandal

HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille today released a progress report on changes the courts are in the process of making in response to the juvenile justice scandal in Luzerne County.

Most of the changes stem from recommendations of the Interbranch Commission on Juvenile Justice that was created by the courts, in conjunction with the executive and legislative branches, in August 2009 to investigate the scandal and develop recommendations for reform.

"I believe it is important for the people of Pennsylvania to know that Pennsylvania’s Unified Judicial System and the Supreme Court have not let the Commission’s report simply gather dust on a shelf," Chief Justice Castille said. "The Judiciary is committed to improving the juvenile justice system so that the problems that were highlighted by the tragedy in Luzerne County are never repeated there or in any other county.

The Chief Justice said that over the past nine months since the Commissio…

Explosion Investigation Continues

An investigation is continuing into the cause of an explosion that destroyed a Bradford Township home Monday morning.

Thomas Federspiel was outside the home at 10 Helen Lane when the explosion happened at 7:20 a.m. Monday.

The explosion caused part of the home to collapse and ignited a fire inside, causing an estimated $250,000 in damage, according to a fax sent to WESB and The HERO by state police fire marshal Greg Agosti.

Federspiel was able to rescue his two dogs from the home before Bradford Township firefighters arrived. He was treated at the scene for a minor injury.

National Fuel Gas assisted Agosti and the fire department with the investigation. The natural-gas distribution system, along with local gas distribution facilities were examined and tested and found to be safe.

The Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission, the state Department of Environmental Protection and the McKean County Emergency Management Agency also assisted.

Variety of Disturbances Keep Police Busy

Disturbances and parking complaints kept Bradford City Police busy over the weekend.

They were called to disturbances on Foreman and Mechanic streets and Marion Avenue. They were also called to a neighbor dispute on Summer Street, and reports of disorderly conduct on West Washington Street and harassment on Melvin Avenue.

Officers were notified about a utility pole fire on Poplin Avenue, a hit and run on Mechanic Street and parking problems on Williams, Park, Amm and Pike streets and on Chautauqua Place.

They also got calls about criminal mischief on Main Street, an unwanted person on State Street, a suspicious vehicle on Cole Avenue and an animal complaint on Euclid Avenue, according to the complaint report and request sheet.