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Saturday, March 3, 2012

Texting Ban in Effect Thursday

Pennsylvania's ban on texting while driving goes into effect on Thursday.

The law will prohibit drivers from using wireless interactive communications devices to read, write or send text messages or e-mails while operating a motor vehicle. Violators could face a $50 fine.

The texting ban will be considered a primary offense, meaning law enforcement officials may pull over a driver solely for texting.






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Wind Warning, Advisory Still in Effect

It’ll be a windy day in the Twin Tiers.

A high wind warning remains in effect until 10 o’clock tonight in Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties. A wind advisory remains in effect for McKean, Warren, Elk, Potter, Cameron and Clearfield counties until 7 o’clock tonight.

The National Weather Service says a high wind warning is issued when sustained winds of 40 miles an hour are expected for at least an hour, with gusts as high as 60 miles an hour.

In the warning areas, people can expect scattered power outages and downed trees and tree limbs. Minor property damage is also likely.

In the advisory areas, gusts could be as high as 50 miles an hour. Broken tree branches are likely, and they could cause power outages. Outdoor furniture and other loose objects may be blown around if they are not secured.

tan=wind advisory; gold=wind warning

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Salamanca Man Jailed After Police Chase

A Salamanca man is facing charges after running from sheriff’s deputies early this morning.

Deputies say they got a call about an assault on Catherine Drive in Salamanca, and were looking for 19-year-old Andrew Skye. When they found him he ignored orders and attempted to break a door to get into a house. Deputies caught up with him after a short foot pursuit on Center Road in Jimersontown.

After they arrested Skye, deputies also learned that he was on parole. He was sent to jail on $500 bail and is scheduled to appear in Town of Salamanca Court on Monday.

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Special Olympians Compete at UPB

More than 100 special athletes from McKean, Potter, Elk and Cameron counties gathered at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford Sport and Fitness Center pool Friday for the annual Special Olympics Swimming Invitational.

The invitational is the culmination of the swimming season for most of the athletes, who have been in training for several months for this event. Seven swimmers, whose names will be announced, will advance to the Pennsylvania Special Olympics Summer Games at Penn State, June 7-9.

Gold medal winners were:

15yd Walk: Veronica Harris, Adam Rakieski, Art Garcia, Michael Samick

10yd Assisted: Kia Jefferds, Adam Rakieski, Evan Smith, Alex Rakieski, Rodney Meyer, Lauren Loveland

15yd Unassisted: Kim Langworthy, Evan Smith, Matt Latshaw

15yd Float: Kia Jefferds, Tristan Carney, John Sandlin, Zack Asti

25yd Float: Steph Schlopy, Tristan Carney, George Burton

25yd Freestyle: Andrew Wilson, Karen Smith, Vicky Nichols, Emily Dunkle, Chelsea Ogden, Ashley Peterson, Mitchell Rakieski, Tim Taylor, Gary Stewart, Aaron Briggs

25yd Butterfly: Judy Carr

25yd Backstroke: Vicky Nichols, Katie McDonough, Sharon Petitt, Chelsea Ogden, Andrew Wilson, Mitchell Rakieski, Derek Hottel, Matt Kronenwetter

50yd Freestyle: Shauna Graham, Andrew Wilson, Matt Scott, Ginger Smith, Chelsea Ogden, Mitchell Rakieski

50yd Backstroke: Vicky Nichols, Karen Smith, Devin Guras

4x25yd Relay: Joe Lee, Mike Monti, Anna Smith, Sharon Petitt, Vicky Nichols, Gary Stewart

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Friday, March 2, 2012

Susan Corbett Celebrates Girl Scouts

Harrisburg – First Lady Susan Corbett today marked the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts by applauding the organization’s positive impact on girls throughout Pennsylvania. “I have fond memories of being a Girl Scout and a troop leader,” said Mrs. Corbett, who is Pennsylvania’s Honorary Chair of the 100th anniversary celebration. “I have seen first-hand how Girl Scouting builds confidence and leadership skills and provides young girls with experiences that last a lifetime.” Mrs. Corbett was joined at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg by 50 members of Pennsylvania’s 100th Anniversary Honorary Committee, which is made up of political figures, business leaders and community members from across the state. “Bringing together this group of women to celebrate Girl Scouts reminds us that for the past 100 years, it has prepared our girls to be the leaders of tomorrow,” said Mrs. Corbett. Harrisburg-area Girl Scouts kicked off today’s event with a flag ceremony. Centennial events will be held throughout Pennsylvania in the coming weeks.

Provided by Commonwealth Media Services

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Driver Steals 'Paternoville' Sign

Penn State campus police are looking for a driver who knocked down and stole the sign for "Paternoville" outside Beaver Stadium.

Surveillance cameras captured images of a driver damaging gates, driving on grass and knocking over the Paternoville marker and another sign at about 4 o’clock Tuesday morning.

Paternoville is the tent encampment outside Beaver Stadium where students wait to get the best seats for home football games. It's named for Joe Paterno, the longtime football coach who died of lung cancer earlier this year.

More images of the car are posted on at www.psu.edu



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Man Missing for More Than a Month

Police are asking for help in finding a Jamestown man who’s been missing for more than a month.

48-year-old Michael Whitehill was last seen leaving his South Main Street apartment at around 8 p.m. on January 22.

Anyone who may have seen or heard from Whitehill after January 22, or anyone who knows where he is, is asked to call Jamestown Police at 716-483-7537.

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Sandusky Lawyers Want More Details

Jerry Sandusky’s attorneys are not satisfied with the information the state provided them with yesterday concerning the ages of his alleged sexual abuse victims and the times and places the abuse took place.

Defense lawyers filed a motion today asking Judge John Cleland to order prosecutors to provide specific details. The motion says the information that was provided Thursday is not sufficient for Sandusky to prepare a defense using an alibi, statute of limitations, double jeopardy “or any other defense.”

Prosecution documents say the 68-year-old former Penn State assistant football coach abused boys ages 8 through 17 on the university’s main campus, in his home and a variety of other places between 1998 and 2002.

The attorney general’s office said they could not provide specific dates, times and locations in all instances because the victims were children when the alleged abuse happened.

Sandusky denies the allegations.

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Dayton Man Allegedly Raped Child

A 44-year-old Dayton, New York, man is accused of having sex with a 12-year-old girl in December, January and February in his home.

Dwight Johnson Jr. is charged with first-degree rape, course of sexual conduct against a child and committing a criminal sexual act, all felonies.

After he was arrested and charged by Cattaraugus County Sheriff’s deputies he was arraigned and sent to jail in lieu of $10,000 bail.

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Severe Weather on the Way

A high wind warning remains in effect in Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties from 7 o’clock tonight until 10 o’clock Saturday night.

Wind gusts could be has high as 65 mph, especially near Lake Erie.

The National Weather Service in Buffalo expects scattered power outages. Strong winds could also bring down trees and tree limbs. Minor property damage is likely as well.

The National Weather Service in State College says there is a “slight risk” of severe thunderstorms in McKean County tonight and early tomorrow morning. The primary threat will be large hail and wind gusts of up to 60 mph.
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Woman Allegedly Hit Sheriff's Deputy

A woman is accused of hitting a sheriff’s deputy who was arresting her for disorderly conduct.

Deputies say they got a call about a woman in the road on Water Street in the village of Mayville at 7:30 this morning. When they arrived, 19-year-old Alexandria Earls was still in the road. They say while they were interviewing her she got belligerent and hit a deputy.

She was charged with disorderly conduct and harassment and was sent to jail on $1,000 cash bail.
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Schlimm is UPB's Commencement Speaker

John Schlimm, internationally award-winning author of 11 books on cooking/entertaining, history, how-to and fiction, will speak to the graduating class of 2012 at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.

Schlimm, whose most recent books are “The Tipsy Vegan,” which was featured in The New York Times, and the upcoming “Grilling Vegan Style,” will deliver the keynote address during commencement exercises at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 29, in the KOA Arena of the Sport and Fitness Center at Pitt-Bradford.

Schlimm was a hit with the students he spoke to during the Pitt-Bradford Alumni Association’s Backpack to Briefcase program in January when he delivered his “There Are No Limits” address.

Joshua Gray, a senior broadcast communications major from St. Charles, Ill., was one of the students at the program.

“The spirit and drive that John brought to Backpack to Briefcase was amazing,” Gray said. “I have never listened to a speaker and wished he had more time to speak. I hope he brings that to Commencement.”

Gray also noted that Schlimm is a Pitt-Bradford alumnus, having earned dual teaching certifications in English and speech communications from 1999 to 2001 and that he’s done much more than be a vegan cookbook author.

His venture into cookbook writing began with two books related to his family’s business, Straub Brewery Inc., which was founded in the 1870s by his great-great-grandfather Peter Straub. He began with “The Straub Beer Cookbook” and “The Straub Beer Party Drinks Handbook” before writing “The Ultimate Beer Lover’s Cookbook,” which is the largest beer cookbook ever published and went on to be named both “Best Beer Book in the U.S.” and “Best Beer Book in the World” by the international Gourmand Awards.

Schlimm’s other books include “The Seven Stars Cookbook: Recipes from World-Class Casino Restaurants,” “The Pennsylvania Celebrities Cookbook,” “Corresponding with History” and “Twang,” his debut novel that draws from his former work as a celebrity publicist in the country music industry.

Schlimm’s efforts as an activist and advocate include work and fundraising on behalf of such issues as domestic violence and sexual abuse, animal safety and welfare, literacy and education, healthy lifestyle choices, cancer prevention and treatment, volunteerism and many others. He works with such local and national organizations as the Humane Society, CAPSEA Inc., the American Red Cross’s Swimming and Water Safety Program, and the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. He is also the founding co-director of Team Straub, the fundraising arm of Straub Brewery.

In recent years, he has traveled the country doing appearances and speaking to a wide variety of groups. He has appeared on such national media outlets as “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” QVC, NPR, “Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food,” and cable’s No. 1 morning show, “Fox & Friends.”

During his early career, Schlimm served in the vice presidential communications office at the White House where he worked with second lady Tipper Gore, worked in production and scriptwriting for the national radio series “Enterprising Women,” was a fundraiser for various national and local nonprofits, and served as a celebrity publicist at FrontPage Publicity in Nashville.

In 2003, he joined the faculty at Pitt-Bradford as an adjunct professor in the Division of Communication and the Arts, where he was also the host of the radio program “Campus Crossfire” for five seasons. During the 2006-07 academic year, he served as the visiting assistant professor for broadcast communications.

Schlimm has also been a promotional writer for various entities, including Caesars Entertainment, the country’s preeminent literary PR firm, and a leading publisher, where he wrote on behalf of Hollywood and literary superstars as well as some of the country’s most respected brand names. His articles and writings have also appeared in various anthologies, including the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” series, magazines, newspapers, and online news sources.

In addition to a bachelor’s degrees from Marymount University and dual education certifications from Pitt-Bradford, Schlimm holds a master’s degree in education from Harvard University.

Pictured, Schlimm with his friend Rascal at the Elk County Humane Society, one of many charities he works with.
Provided by Pitt-Bradford.


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United Refining Owner Thinking About
Buying Sunoco Refinery in Philly

The owner of United Refining in Warren says he is thinking about bidding on Sunoco's refinery in South Philadelphia.

United Refining Energy Corp. chairman and billionaire John Catsimatidis tells The Philadelphia Inquirer his company is deciding this month if it will make an offer for the refinery, which Sunoco plans to shut down on July 1 if they don't find a buyer.

He is the first potential buyer to publicly acknowledge an interest in the refinery, which is the largest on the East Coast. It is one of three in the Philadelphia area threatened with permanent closure because their owners say they are unprofitable.

In addition to the Philadelphia facility, Sunoco already shut down its Marcus Hook refinery. ConocoPhillips has shut down operations at its refinery in Trainer.
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A.J. Burnett Out of Surgery

RHP A.J. Burnett underwent surgery this morning to repair the fractured orbital bone in his right eye at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh. The surgery was performed by Dr. Randall Beatty.

“A.J. will work through the three step return to pitch progression,” said General Manager Neal Huntington. “The initial step will be to heal from the surgery. Secondly we will recondition his arm and body to where he was prior to the injury. Lastly, we will put A.J. through the same progression as he would have gone through here in spring training. The very rough timetable to complete this process and have A.J. prepared to compete without restrictions at the Major League level is 8-12 weeks.”


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Jamestown Man Picked Up in Michigan

A Jamestown man wanted on burglary charges has been picked up in the state of Michigan.

31-year-old Jason Nasser is accused of going on a burglary spree with two other people in the Town of Stockton two years ago. They broke into homes and seasonal camps and stole ATVs, a 50-inch flat screen TV, power tools and a number of other items.

Once he serves his sentence in Michigan he’ll be extradited to New York. Police did not say what charges he faces in Michigan.

Nasser had been on the Chautauqua County Most Wanted list.
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Bradford Man Facing Drug, DUI Charges

A Bradford man is facing charges following a traffic stop Thursday night in the city.

State police say they stopped 34-year-old Duane Gonzalez at Elm and Congress streets because he didn’t have a working head light.

Police say they determined Gonzalez was driving under the influence and was in possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia.

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PSP: Man Started Fire, Then OD'd

A state police fire marshal says a Ridgway man set a house on fire then died of a drug overdose at the house.

Police say 41-year-old John Darnell III set the fire using a pile of papers on the first floor of the house. The fire almost burned itself out, but firefighters went to the house when smoke could be seen coming from it. That’s when they discovered Darnell’s body. They say he previously shared the house with his girlfriend.

Police say they are waiting for toxicology reports to determine what kind of drugs Darnell took.

Damage to the house is estimated at $7,500.

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Lawmakers Still Fighting for adultBasic

HARRISBURG -- One year after 40,000 Pennsylvanians were booted from their adultBasic health coverage, state Sen. Mike Stack, along with several Senate Democratic colleagues and health advocates, called for reviving the low-cost state-run health plan.

“This was a program that allowed working individuals an opportunity to afford health insurance. They just needed a hand up to stay healthy and go to work. Instead, they got a smack down from Governor Corbett,” said Stack (D-Phila.), the Democratic chairman of the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee. “One year later, these folks still need assistance.”

The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center estimates that only 40 percent of former adultBasic recipients have found other health care coverage.

Specifically, during recent budget hearings Pennsylvania Department of Insurance Commissioner Michael F. Consedine noted that only about a third of former adultBasic recipients were enrolled in the alternative health programs Special Care, Medical Assistance, or PA Fair Care.

“That means 60 percent of former adultBasic recipients still have no health coverage, and that doesn’t even include the half-million Pennsylvanians who were on the adultBasic waiting list,” Stack said. “It is unbelievable that this administration continues to let decent, hard-working individuals fall through the cracks.”

Pennsylvania’s adultBasic program, which provided low-cost health care to working Pennsylvanians who made too much to qualify for Medical Assistance, ended on Feb. 28, 2011 due to a lack of funding.

Stack called for using tobacco settlement money to fund this program, as it was funded in previous years.

State Sen. John Blake, who was the former chairman of the Tobacco Settlement Investment Board, agreed.

“These resources could have been available,” said Blake (D-Lackawanna). “The ending of adultBasic does not improve the quality of life of Pennsylvanians and it could have been avoided.”

Stack also recommended pausing the capitol stock and franchise tax phase out for one year to generate $275 million and fund the adultBasic program until the health exchange is implemented under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in January 2014.

The Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers has reported that calls to its toll-free hotline, which helps connect individuals with health care, increased from an average of 200 calls a month to 900 calls a month since adultBasic ended.

“It’s bad enough that these folks are dealing with chronic conditions and medical issues that are beyond their control, but to add the anxiety of losing their health coverage is just cruel,” said state Sen. Judy Schwank (D-Berks). “The administration may have been trying to save a few dollars but ending adultBasic will be very costly for Pennsylvania.”

Pennsylvania ranks sixth among states with the highest impact of chronic disease, according to a study released by the Milken Institute. The cost of treating these conditions totaled $13.6 billion in 2003, and the impact of lost workdays and lower employee productivity resulted in an annual economic loss in Pennsylvania of $50.5 billion.

Former adultBasic recipient Danielle Gatto of Philadelphia testified via a video interview at the news conference.

Gatto, a restaurant manager living with the digestive disorder Crohn’s disease, was denied private health insurance because of her preexisting condition. She relied on adultBasic from 1995 until the program ended last year. With adultBasic coverage, she was able to manage her chronic condition and stay out of the hospital.

“Adultbasic was so beneficial because it’s the only plan that would cover the treatment that I need for my Crohn’s disease,” said Gatto, 31. “There’s no other insurance that will take me with that condition. AdultBasic was the only thing that would cover the treatment for me and that treatment is the only thing that keeps me out of the hospital.”

Gatto is now enrolled in the alternative Special Care program, which has a monthly premium of $148.70, compared to the $36 adultBasic premium. Her new plan only allows four doctor visits a year.

“I can use them up just with my GI, so I have to pick and choose which doctor is more important to see. When I had adultBasic I could see whatever doctor I needed to see,” Gatto said. “If I have to spend a week in the hospital, I can’t work and if I can’t work I can’t pay my rent.”

At Stack’s request, state Sen. Lisa Boscola has scheduled a Senate Democratic Policy Committee panel discussion to examine the impact of the end of adultBasic, which will take place on Thursday, March 8 at 1 p.m. at Nazareth Hospital in Stack’s district in Philadelphia.

Pictured, Sen. Mike Stack (center) calls for the revival of adultBasic, which provided low-cost coverage to 40,000 Pennsylvanians until its demise last year. With him are (left to right) Amy Reumann, director of the Lutheran Advocacy Ministry in Pennsylvania, Sen. Judy Schwank, Sen. Lisa Boscola and Sen. John Blake.

Provided by Senate Democratic Communications



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SBU's Crowley One of 10 Named to
USBWA Coach of the Year Watch List

St. Bonaventure's Jim Crowley has been named to the U.S. Basketball Writers Association Women's National Coach of the Year award watch list by members of the USBWA on Thursday.

Crowley, who was named Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year on Wednesday, has guided a team picked to finish sixth the league by his peers to a 27-2 record and perfect 14-0 mark in the A-10 for the first time in program history. The award was Crowley's second Coach of the Year award in the last four years. The Windsor, N.Y. native won the award in 2008-09, and has led SBU to 20 or more wins in each of the last four seasons.

Crowley – one of just 10 head coaches in the nation named to the list – led Bona to the school's first regular-season title in any sport this year. The No. 19/22 Bonnies have set records for wins, road victories (13) and conference triumphs, and are currently riding a program-best 16-game winning streak.

Joining Crowley on the watch list are a pair of coaches he opposed this year – Delaware's Tina Martin and Kim Barnes Arico of St. John's – in addition to Joanne P. McCallie of Duke, Baylor's Kim Mulkey, Notre Dame's Muffet McGraw, Penn State's Coquese Washington, Kentucky's Matthew Mitchell and Stanford's Tara VanDerveer.

The announcement of the winner will come at the annual USBWA breakfast at the NCAA Women's Final Four on Tuesday, April 3 in Denver. The event is open to all credentialed Final Four media with limited availability to others interested in attending the event.

Crowley and his Bonnies earned the No. 1 seed at this weekend's 2012 Buick A-10 Women's Basketball Championship. SBU will face either eighth-seeded La Salle or ninth-seeded Xavier in the Quarterfinals at Noon on Saturday from Saint Joseph's Hagan Arena in Philadelphia.
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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Bradford Man Charge with 30 Counts of
Sexual Abuse of Children

A Bradford man is in jail on 30 counts of sexual abuse of children and related charges.

22-year-old Justin Conklin allegedly had sexual contact with four children ranging in age from 14 to 17 over a period of a year in the City of Bradford as well as Bradford and Foster townships.

The state police investigation revealed that in addition to possessing child pornography Conklin had sexual contact with some of the victims and agreed to pay one of them for a sex act.

Besides the 30 counts of sexual abuse of children, Conklin is charged with two counts of unlawful contact with a minor and one count each of statutory sexual assault, corruption of minors and prostitution.

He was arraigned by District Judge Rich Luther, who set bail at a quarter of a million dollars cash.

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Crash Closes I-86 for Three Hours

I-86 near the Town of Ellery in Chautauqua County was closed for several hours this afternoon after a garbage truck flipped over and blocked the road.

Sheriff’s deputies say at around noon a Pro-Waste Garbage truck driven by 40-year-old Lee Woodward of Fairview, PA, was on the off-ramp of Exit 10 when it went off the shoulder, hit several delineator markers and flipped over.

Woodward was taken by ambulance to WCA Hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. He was cited for driving at an unsafe speed, and deputies say further charges are pending.

The road re-opened at around 3 p.m.
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Documents Tell When, Where
Sandusky Allegedly Abused 10 Boys

The state Attorney General's office has released the approximate dates, the locations and the ages of the 10 alleged victims in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse case.

The documents filed in Centre County Court say the youngest victim was 8 years old when Sandusky allegedly started abusing him.

The alleged abuse of two of the victims started in 1996. According to the documents among the places the alleged abuse happened were Sandusky’s home, locker rooms and dorms on Penn State’s University Park campus, hotels in Florida, Texas and State College and at the school of one of the victims.

Sandusky denies the allegations. Jury selection in his trial is scheduled to start May 14.
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Operation 'Last Call' Nets 14 Suspected
Cocaine Dealers from Altoona to Baltimore

HARRISBURG - Attorney General Linda Kelly and Blair County District Attorney Richard Consiglio today announced the filing of criminal charges against fourteen suspected cocaine suppliers, distributors and dealers identified during an extensive grand jury investigation into drug trafficking between Maryland and Central Pennsylvania.

Kelly noted that this drug network allegedly distributed approximately 2.5 kilos of cocaine per week in and around Altoona, including an estimated $2 million worth of drugs sold during the past year - the largest drug distribution network ever identified in Blair County.

Kelly identified the principal figure in the organization as Damion Floyd, age 33, formerly of Baltimore and currently incarcerated at the State Correctional Institution Pine Grove.

"Floyd is accused of obtaining bulk quantities of cocaine from sources in Maryland, coordinating the transport of drugs back to Altoona and then supervising the sale and delivery of smaller quantities to local dealers and users," Kelly said. "Even after he was arrested during a drug supply trip from Baltimore and sentenced to state prison, Floyd allegedly attempted to continue running his drug organization - using phone calls, correspondence and personal communication with his girlfriend, Natasha Miller, and other associates to monitor activities in Altoona."

Kelly noted that during the balance of this investigation, Floyd was housed at the State Correctional Institution at Camp Hill. SCI Camp Hill officials assisted the Attorney General's Office with this investigation.

According to the grand jury, Floyd used Miller to communicate with Jermaine "Shawn" Samuel, 32, of 105 16th St., Altoona, who allegedly took over day-to-day operations of the drug organization after Floyd's 2010 arrest and imprisonment.

Kelly said that agents intercepted an October 2011 telephone call where Floyd allegedly expressed concerns about Samuel's sales of cocaine and noted that other individuals involved with the organization had written to him with complaints. Floyd allegedly warned Samuel to be cautious because "haters" or competition were around.

Kelly explained that this investigation, known as "Operation Last Call," began with information about street-level drug sales in the Altoona area.

"Using controlled drug purchases, undercover agents, various forms of surveillance and intercepted telephone conversations, we were able to piece together information about the flow of drugs and the people involved," Kelly said. "Information about that drug activity was presented to a statewide investigating grand jury, which recommended the criminal charges that were filed today."

Kelly said investigators determined that a focal point of drug distribution for this organization was the Corner Bar and Grille, located at 1001 8th Ave., Altoona. That business allegedly served as a storage and processing location for cocaine and was also the site of numerous drug deliveries and sales.

The owner of the bar, Brian Stroh of Altoona, is among those charged today. The business was seized during the execution of search warrants in November 2011, which resulted in the discovery of cocaine and drug packaging materials from the office area of the bar, along with drug paraphernalia and evidence of drug processing in an apartment located above the bar.

Kelly said the Baltimore City Police Department/DEA HIDTA group assisted with the investigation, specifically working to identify the Maryland source for cocaine allegedly obtained by Floyd and Samuel. Rodney "Rocco" Williams, of Baltimore, is currently being held in the Blair County Prison on related drug charges and will now face additional criminal counts involving drug trafficking, money laundering and the operation of a corrupt organization.

According to the grand jury, two Altoona area brothers served as primary dealers for this organization - Kenneth Piner and Stephen "Buck" Piner. Others Altoona area residents allegedly involved in the sale, delivery or transportation of cocaine and crack include Glenn S. Piner II, Shonda Lee Hicks, Danny Tallie, Michael L. Pendleton, Tracy C. Piner, Lieesha Samuel and Shirley Thompson.

Kelly said the first phase of the investigation resulted in the execution of a wave of search and arrests warrants on November 4th, 2011, after agents followed a suspected drug courier from Altoona to Baltimore and back. When the vehicle was stopped and searched in in Blair County agents seized 371 grams, or approximately one pound, of cocaine.

Simultaneously with that vehicle stop, agents and drug task force officers initiated eight other search warrants, resulting in the seizure of additional cocaine, nine vehicles and approximately $25,000 cash.

Kelly said the criminal charges filed today are the latest phase of an ongoing investigation, adding that additional suspects are expected to be charged in the future. Anyone with information related to this investigation, or other drug trafficking activities, is urged to contact the Attorney Genera's Bureau of Narcotics Investigation and Drug Control. (Contact information and telephone numbers are available in the "Contact Us" section of the Attorney General's website, at www.attorneygeneral.gov)

Kelly thanked the Blair County District Attorney's Office, Altoona Police Department, Blair County Drug Task Force, Centre County Drug Task Force, Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania Department of Corrections - SCI Camp Hill for their cooperation and assistance with this investigation.

The criminal charges were filed before Roaring Spring Magisterial District Judge Craig Ormsby.

The defendants will be prosecuted in Blair County by Senior Deputy Attorney General David C. Gorman of the Attorney General's Drug Strike Force Section.

A full list of the defendants and the charges filed against them is included below:

Damion Floyd, age 33, SCI Pine Grove, Indiana, PA, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Jermaine "Shawn" Samuel, 32, 105 16th St., Altoona, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Natasha Q. Miller, 30, 428 5th Ave., Altoona, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Kenneth Piner, 51, 700 5th Ave., Altoona, is charged with five counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine along with one count each of criminal conspiracy, participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Stephen M. "Buck" Piner, 52, 1424 18th Ave., Altoona, is charged with five counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine along with one count each of criminal conspiracy, participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Brian Stroh, age 37, 933 Carlee Lane, Altoona, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Rodney "Rocco" Williams, Baltimore, MD, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Glenn S. Piner II, 27, 1306 18th Ave., Altoona, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Shonda Lee Hicks, 26, 218 1st Ave., Altoona, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Danny Tallie, 41, 623 4th Ave., Altoona, is charged with one count each of possession with intent to deliver cocaine, criminal conspiracy, participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Michael L. Pendleton, 45, 1912 15th Ave., Altoona, is charged with five counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine along with one count each of criminal conspiracy, participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Tracy C. Piner, 42, Evergreen Manor, Altoona, is charged with one count each of possession with intent to deliver cocaine, criminal conspiracy, participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Lieesha Samuel, age 29, 105 16th St., Altoona, is charged with four counts of possession with intent to deliver cocaine; two counts of criminal conspiracy; along with one count each of participating in a corrupt organization, dealing in unlawful proceeds (money laundering) and criminal use of a communications facility.

Shirley Thompson, age 61, 114 6th Ave., Altoona, is charged with one count each of possession with intent to deliver cocaine, criminal conspiracy, possession of cocaine and criminal use of a communications facility.

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Chapeau Tea is in Ten Days

Bonnies Clinch A-10 Bye
With 2OT Win Over Saint Joseph's

Andrew Nicholson bolstered his bid for Atlantic 10 Player of the Year, leading St. Bonaventure (17-10, 10-5) to a 98-93 double-overtime win over Saint Joseph's (19-12, 9-7) at the Reilly Center.

Nicholson scored 32 points, grabbed 14 rebounds and made a barrage of clutch 3s to carry the Bonnies to a gutty, back-and-forth victory. The win, paired with Temple's overtime victory against UMass, guarantees SBU a top-four seed and a bye in the Atlantic 10 Championship in Atlantic City, N.J. March 9-11.

An instant classic, the whole game was played within a six-point window with 14 lead changes and 18 ties.

SBU bombed away three 3-pointers in four possessions of the second and final overtime - one from Nicholson, who canned three of five treys – to open up its biggest lead of the game with 90 seconds left. It was just enough to keep in front of a Saint Joseph's team in the hunt for a top-four seed of its own.

Getting there, though, was an adventure.

The Bonnies, who now own the A-10's longest win streak at four games, trailed 67-63 with a minute to go in regulation, but pulled to within one on a Nicholson 3. SBU forced a shot clock violation on its next possession before Nicholson used a shot fake to create space and find Matthew Wright open in the corner for a triple. With 1.9 ticks showing, Bona held a 69-67 lead that capped the rally and almost held up for the outright win.

A foul was called on the ensuing hail-mary inbounds pass, giving the Hawks' C.J. Aiken a pair of free throws that pushed the game to overtime.

Tied 75-all with 2:18 to go in the first extra frame, the Hawks strung together a 7-1 run, most of which came on four free throws from Chris Wilson. Down six, 82-76, St. Bonaventure responded again – a Da'Quan Cook layup, a Wright 3 – all leading to an NBA-range triple from Nicholson that tied it at 84 with 2.3 seconds left in overtime.

Nicholson, the leading candidate for League Player of the Year, recorded his fourth double-double in a seven-game tear through the heart of the Atlantic 10 season. He sits just six points shy of 2,000 for his career, with averages of 26 points and 12 rebounds over that span, including a red-hot 71 percent clip (10-14) from beyond the arc.

After trading jabs with the Hawks to start the final period, Kloof popped a straight away triple and Nicholson drained another from the wing to help SBU defeat Saint Joseph's defeat the Hawks for just the fifth time in 30 games under Phil Martelli.

Demitrius Conger chipped in his second straight double-double as well, totaling 16 points and 12 boards while handing out six assists. Cook tallied 14 points and was 8-of-11 from the free throw line and point guard Charlon Kloof knocked down both of his trifectas en route to 12 points.

Langston Galloway and Carl Jones led the Hawks with 20 points apiece. Ronald Roberts netted 18 to go with seven caroms.

The Bonnies conclude the regular season Saturday at La Salle (19-11, 8-7).

NOTES: The Bonnies will likely become the 17th school nationally and third in the Atlantic 10 with at least five 2,000-point scorers (La Salle 6, Xavier 5) … a scout from the NBA's Golden State Warriors was among the credentialed media … the Bonnies earned their 11th home win of the season, the most since 2001-01 … the 17 wins tie the most for a Mark Schmidt-coached team (17-11 at Robert Morris in 2006-07) … Bona's nine turnovers were the fewest this season … the 10 A-10 wins mark just the third time in program history with 10 or more, and first since 1999-00 (11-5).

Long-awaited Osterhout Street Project
Begins March 7 in Ridgway

Ridgway – The long-awaited Osterhout Street truck bypass project in Ridgway will get underway on Wednesday, March 7. Osterhout Street is also known as State Route 1014. Crews will be working to place project signage and implement the project detour. The detour will require drivers to use Route 120 and Route 219.

Initial operations will include utility relocation, removal of asbestos –containing material from existing structures, and installation of erosion and sedimentation controls.

All work is weather and schedule dependent. The contract for $2.75 million was awarded to New Enterprise Stone and Lime Co. Inc. of New Enterprise, PA. Work will include total reconstruction and realignment of Osterhout Street and intersection improvements at Route 219 (Broad Street) and Route 948 (Main Street).

When the work is completed, heavy truck traffic will be able to bypass the center of Ridgway and access northbound Route 219 via the newly aligned & constructed Osterhout Street. This traffic flow will alleviate truck traffic congestion through Ridgway Borough.

PennDOT expects the project to span the 2012 and 2013 construction seasons.

Follow PennDOT on Twitter at www.twitter.com/511PAStateCOLL.

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SBU's Jenkins is Naismith Award Finalist

St. Bonaventure senior Jessica Jenkins has been named as one of just 30 finalists for the Naismith Women's College Player of the Year, Atlanta Tipoff Club members announced on Wednesday.

The award, presented by AT&T, is given annually to the best player in Division I women's college basketball. Jenkins – who leads the Bonnies in scoring this year at 14.3 per game – is one of just five players on the list from non-BCS schools.

The Naismith recognition came just hours after Jenkins was named to the Atlantic 10 First Team and Academic All-Conference Team earlier on Wednesday. Jenkins is the only player from the A-10 who was named a finalist.

The Marion, Ohio, native currently owns the second-most career 3-pointers in the nation with 321, a total which ranks her 18th on the all-time NCAA list. In addition to her long-range shooting, Jenkins has established career highs in rebounds, field goals made and free throws made this season.

The 5-foot-8 guard has started 95 consecutive games – the eighth-longest streak among active players in the country – and her 93 3-pointers this season are 28 more than anyone in the A-10 and fifth-most in the nation. Additionally, the marketing major leads the league in free-throw shooting at 96.7 percent (59-61) and was a perfect 38-38 from the line in conference games.

A certified personal trainer, Jenkins leads the Brown and White in minutes played at 31.6, which is an average of nearly five minutes more than anyone else on the roster. A mainstay in the Bonaventure lineup since stepping foot on campus, Jenkins has played in all 129 games in her career. That total tops the A-10 among seniors, with redshirts excluded.

Jenkins broke the A-10 career 3-point record earlier this year (was 291), and has hit exactly eight 3's in a game this season three times. For her career, Jenkins has hit five or more 3-pointers in a contest 24 times – with 23 of those coming since the beginning of her sophomore year – representing the most of any player in the nation.

While a definite threat from beyond the arc, Jenkins has diversified her scoring game since her freshman year. Her percentage of total points scored which come from beyond the 3-point line has decreased every year since her initial campaign, and this season it's at an all-time low of 67 percent. However, Jenkins has still increased both her points per game average and 3-pointers per game average each season.

The Naismith Trophy will be awarded on April 1 at the NCAA Women's Final Four in Denver. More information will be given in the coming weeks, but fan voting will account for 25 percent of all final results – more than any other national college basketball award.


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Rooters Buses Going to Owls' Games

Bradford High is sponsoring rooters buses for students and the community to Saturday’s playoff games in Clarion.

Sign up today and tomorrow at the Athletic Directors office and get a $5 McDonald’s gift card. It’s FREE for students and anyone in the community who wants to go.

The buses will start loading at 11:30 in the school parking lot (auditorium side). After the games, the buses will stop at a McDonald’s for dinner.

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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Causer Questions DCNR About ATVs

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources took its turn in front of the House Appropriations Committee this morning, and State Representative Marty Causer asked why the agency has not moved to increase the number of publicly accessible ATV trails in Pennsylvania’s state forests.

"We pay ATV registration fees and yet we have limited opportunities in our area to ride those ATVs on legitimate legal trails," Causer said after the hearing. "And we all know that we have very significant amounts of state forest land; and if we’re going to have the state forest land, if we’re going to pay these ATV registration fees; we should have opportunities to ride those ATVs."

Causer added that increased opportunities to ride ATVs on state forest trails would reduce problems caused by ATV riders trespassing on private land.

He said he also wants to know how much money in the ATV fund and what it’s being used for.

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Families Dealing with Autism
Eligible for State Grants, Says Causer

HARRISBURG – Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint) today announced the availability of mini-grants to support children and adults with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and families that include an individual with an ASD.

The grants are provided by the Bureau of Autism Services within the Department of Public Welfare (DPW). The maximum mini-grant is $500, and can be used for the following services anytime between March 1 and Aug. 31 for grant applicants of any age:

Respite care.
Summer camp programs.
Autism or advocacy related conferences, workshops or training opportunities.
Recreational or community programs.
Safety modifications or adaptations for home and/or community integration.

For applicants age 18 and older, grants can be used to help pay for college-level coursework, personal job coaching, and public transportation to support group meetings or organized social activities.

Applicants must be Pennsylvania residents, have an ASD or have a family member with an ASD, and must not be currently receiving or previously received or enrolled in any family support services for the past 12 months.

Applications must be submitted by mail by April 15.

Grants will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, and awardees will be notified by mail beginning in mid-May through the end of June. For additional information on the mini-grant program or for an application, visit RepCauser.com.


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SBU's Crowley is A-10 Coach of the Year;
Jenkins, Van Tatenhove, Walker Honored

On the coattails of a record-breaking regular season, a trio of St. Bonaventure women's basketball players were named to Atlantic 10 All-Conference teams on Wednesday, and Jim Crowley was named the league's Coach of the Year.

Seniors Jessica Jenkins and Megan Van Tatenhove were chosen to the A-10 First Team and All-Academic Team, while junior Alaina Walker earned a spot on the All-Defensive Team.

Jenkins and Van Tatenhove become just the third and fourth players in program history to land on the First Team, joining Hilary Waltman and Dana Mitchell, who rank No.1 and No. 2, respectively, on the program's all-time scoring list. Walker becomes the first player in program history to be named to the All-Defensive Team – an honor incepted by the A-10 for the 2001-02 season.

It is the first time that St. Bonaventure has had more than one player on the First Team list, and also the first time that more than one player has earned a spot on the All-Academic Team. For Van Tatenhove, it is the second straight season she has been named to the All-Academic Team. It also marks the 10th time in his 12 years in charge of Bonaventure that Crowley has had a player earn All-Academic honors – the most of any school in the league over that period.

"Being named to not only the First Team but also the All-Academic Team is a very special honor for both Meg and Jess, and one they have worked very hard for and are deserving of," Crowley said. "I'm also very happy for Alaina to receive the recognition she certainly deserves. She has been terrific defensively all year and is the true catalyst for all that we do."

In leading the No. 19/22 Bonnies to a 27-2 record and perfect 14-0 mark in the A-10 for the first time in program history, Crowley was recognized by his peers in the league for his second Coach of the Year award in the last four years. Crowley won the award in 2008-09, and has led SBU to 20 or more wins in each of the last four seasons.

Crowley guided Bona to the school's first regular-season title in any sport this year after being picked to finish sixth in the A-10 in preseason voting by fellow coaches. The Bonnies have set records for wins, road victories (13) and conference triumphs, and are currently riding a program-best 16-game winning streak.

"The Coach of the Year honor is one that belongs to my staff and players," Crowley added. "The sacrifices and committed they have made to this program, and the work ethic they display on a daily basis is truly amazing. I am so thankful to have them here with me."

For Jenkins – the Bonnies' leading scorer at 14.3 points per game – the postseason awards are the first of her career. The Marion, Ohio, native currently owns the second-most career 3-pointers in the nation with 321, a total which ranks her 18th on the all-time NCAA list. In addition to her long-range shooting, Jenkins has established career highs in rebounds, field goals made and free throws made this season.

The 5-foot-8 guard has started 95 consecutive games – the eighth-longest streak among active players in the country – and her 93 3-pointers this season are 28 more than anyone in the A-10 and fifth-most in the nation. Additionally, the marketing major leads the league in free-throw shooting at 96.7 percent (59-61) and was a perfect 38-38 from the line in conference games.

Van Tatenhove, an A-10 Preseason First Team selection, is second on the Bona roster in scoring at 13.1 per game and paces the club in rebounding at six per outing. A Second Team All-Conference member last year, the forward led Bonaventure in scoring during conference tilts at 14.6 per contest.

Earlier this season, the Wisconsin product became just the ninth member of the school's 1,000 Point & 500 Rebound Club, and she currently ranks ninth on both the program's all-time rebounding (590) and scoring (1,377) lists. Injured throughout a portion of the non-conference schedule, Van Tatenhove increased her points per game average from 11.1 and rebounding average from 5.5 during the non-league docket to their current states by leading the Bonnies in scoring five times in A-10 play and rebounding on four occasions.

The citation for Walker is the first of her career and comes as the Bonnies lead the A-10 in scoring defense for the third consecutive season. SBU is allowing just 53 points per game, and if that average holds it will set an A-10 single-season record for scoring defense. The current record of 53.1 per outing is held by the 1999-2000 Saint Joseph's squad.

Walker consistently matches up with the opposing team's best offensive player and ranks second on the Bona roster in defensive rebounding, having pulled down 117 this year, just two fewer than Van Tatenhove. Perhaps her best defensive effort of the year came in a win at West Virginia as she held Taylor Palmer to just three points on 1-14 shooting – her worst performance of the campaign – after Palmer scored 33 in WVU's season opener.

St. Bonaventure earned the No. 1 seed at this weekend's 2012 Buick A-10 Women's Basketball Championship in Philadelphia and will commence action on Saturday, March 3, at Noon against either eighth-seeded La Salle or ninth-seeded Xavier.
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Snow Sparkle Every Spring

By Joe Kosack
Wildlife Conservation Education Specialist
Pennsylvania Game Commission


KLEINFELTERSVILLE – A sudden rising chatter signals the greater snow geese on Middle Creek’s calm, icy waters are synchronizing for their morning departure. The crescendo climaxes in the serenity and shadows of sunrise with a spectacular upheaval over the water that every nature-lover must see.

With a force only nature could provide, tens of thousands of greater snow geese rise from the waters off Willow Point at the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area in follow-the-leader formations that make more sense to watchers the further the geese get from the water. Amid the chaotic liftoff, though, there is calmness among the participants, almost to a bird. This is casual for them. Life as they know it, sort of like heading to work in Manhattan every morning.

But the snow goose’s unflappable expressions neither cheapen the show at sunrise nor the sideshows that occur at Middle Creek throughout the day. Coming to Middle Creek when large numbers of greater snow geese and tundra swans are staging there to push further north in spring migration is an adventure you won’t forget. You’ll see nature unbound, in your face and percolating with spontaneity. It is worth a daytrip or weekend to see. You’ll know that when you’re leaving.

With the ongoing mild winter, snow geese have been converging on Middle Creek earlier and soon may be heading north. So, if you’re looking to see the magic of this spectacular show, plan to head to Middle Creek soon. If you can, and you want a front row seat, go to Willow Point before sunrise. Expect company. Expect cold. And expect a sweeping panoramic view of the unfolding action.

“Once you’ve been to Willow Point at sunrise to catch the action, you’ll be back,” explained Carl G. Roe, Game Commission executive director. “When those snow geese take flight, you’re mesmerized by the masses and even individual birds; every wing stroke, every formation shift. You’ll wonder, ‘Where are they going?’ and “Why did they do that?’ They consume your every thought.”


The stark, white bodies of the geese and swans tend to have a hypnotic effect on your concentration as you take in the lake and the drab winter background surrounding it. Next to the sun, they’re the brightest objects out there. And they’re a lot easier to watch than that fat, old sun.

Middle Creek hasn’t always been grand central station for greater snow geese returning north to breeding grounds in spring. As recently as the 1980s, only several hundred stopped over on migrations north. That was partly related to Middle Creek’s relative newness – built in the early 1970s – and the limited number of greater snow geese in the Atlantic Flyway. Data collected in the St. Lawrence River valley – where the continent’s entire greater snow goose population stops over in migration – in the late 1960s showed North America had no more than 25,000 snow geese at that time. Over the last 30 years, things have changed in the flyway and at Middle Creek.

Today, the flyway has a million or more snows, and some springs have seen 150,000 to 170,000 snow geese holed up resting at Middle Creek waiting for a stiff southern wind to help them push further north. The migration stretches from wintering areas in Delaware, Maryland and Virginia about 2,500 miles north to nesting areas in the Canadian Arctic. The snow goose’s main breeding colony is on Bylot Island, one of the largest uninhabited islands – 4,273 square miles – in the world.

The Atlantic Flyway primarily is used by greater snow geese. If they fly near the Alleghenies, they’ll need to reprogram their internal GPS unit or find a better point goose. The lesser snow goose and Ross’ goose tend to migrate mostly on flyways west of the Atlantic Flyway.

“Snow geese once fed almost exclusively on vegetation in coastal salt marsh habitats,” said John Dunn, Game Commission Game Management Division chief. “Changing environmental conditions – including milder summers on the Arctic breeding grounds – and increasing corn and winter wheat production near migratory staging and wintering grounds, caused a change in feeding behavior and led to better conditioned snow geese and an associated reduction in their mortality rates. That led to increased survival, improved reproduction and the population explosion we have seen.”

Today, Middle Creek in late February and early March harbors snow geese in numbers that rival the continent’s population only 30 years ago. In some ways, that’s good. Their population has recovered from a plunge that surely could have been a one-way ticket to join the passenger pigeon. But now they are back and have become a colossal problem.

The overwhelming presence of snow geese is now upsetting established food webs and ecological tolerances in wintering and breeding areas and migratory stopovers along their continental flyway. It’s an unlikely problem for a migratory species, and especially one with the snow goose’s history. But it’s real and being addressed collectively by wildlife conservation agencies through increased hunting seasons and bag limits.

Consequently, hunters are as interested as tourists and birdwatchers in snow geese arriving in Pennsylvania and at Middle Creek. Of course, their aim is different – both literally and figuratively – but their consumptive interest in snow geese is no less important to the Pennsylvania Game Commission and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service than the recreation snow geese provide others.

“Hunters are our best hope to fix the continent’s runaway snow goose population before its damage becomes irreversible on wintering and breeding grounds,” Dunn said. “They’re interested in helping, but there’s a tremendous amount of work to do to right the ship. Landowner willingness to provide hunter access is essential to the effectiveness of this effort.”

On a great morning on Willow Point, you may see 100,000 snow geese resting on the impoundment’s surface at daybreak. That would represent only 10 percent of North America’s current population. Thinking about what it takes to feed that floating army, it becomes clear quickly that each day they can strip acres of spring shoots and piles of waste grain. So far, Middle Creek and the surrounding area have been able sustain their needs with limited habitat losses and agricultural damages. But if a larger percentage of the North America’s snows come to Middle Creek, or the continental population continues to grow, satisfying the white horde’s needs may become impossible.

For now, though, things are relatively stable at Middle Creek. So if you come, enjoy the show and remember that the hunters you may see in the fields off the wildlife management area are trying to help to improve snow goose conservation, and that they, through the purchase of hunting licenses, finance waterfowl management in the Commonwealth. They’re the good guys.

If you’re planning to come for the day, bring clothing, including a wind-breaking garment, to keep you warm – especially if you’re going out to Willow Point; some drinks and food; binoculars and a bird guide; and your patience. Traffic can be heavy at times, and parking is limited in some places. Also, pay attention to the posted signs and upon your arrival stop by the recently renovated Visitors Center, where you can acquire free brochures and talk to folks who can answer your questions.

Visitors are reminded that the roads used for the self-guided driving tour through Middle Creek’s interior are closed currently to vehicular traffic. They will open March 1, weather permitting. Additionally, the Visitors Center is closed Mondays.

To monitor snow goose and tundra swan numbers at Middle Creek, visit the Game Commission website – www.pgc.state.pa.us. Waterfowl Migration Updates can be accessed on the homepage, and further background information on Middle Creek can be obtained by clicking on Middle Creek WMA under “Quick Clicks” on the homepage.

On a final note, don’t spend all of your time looking for snow geese. Middle Creek, at this time of the year, also has bald eagles, tundra swans, northern harriers, short-eared owls, not to mention a plethora of waterfowl species ranging from ring-necked ducks and redheads to common mergansers and northern shovelers. Timing, location, optics and luck all play a role in getting a good look at these birds. So do your homework, get to Middle Creek and make it happen!


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