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Saturday, March 10, 2012

New Info on Missing Jamestown Man

Police have new information about a Jamestown man who has been missing since late January.

The last confirmed sighting of 48-year-old Michael Whitehill was on South Main Street in Jamestown at around 8 p.m. on January 22, but police have learned that he may have been involved in an accident at 11 o’clock that night on Riverside Road in the Town of Kiantone.

A person told police they believe Whitehill was sitting in a disabled vehicle. Whitehill’s vehicle was found abandoned that night with damage to its hood and driver’s side. Investigators believe Whitemall may have walked away from his vehicle and was possibly picked up by another person driving by.

Anyone who has seen him is asked to call detectives at 716-483-8477.

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Ulysses House Destroyed by Fire

A house was destroyed but no one was hurt in a fire Friday in Ulysses.

Paul Crippen Jr. and Kelli Crippen owned the house at 419 Graham Street.

State Police fire marshal David Surra says Kelli Crippen was asleep in the house when smoke alarms woke her up and she was able to escape.

Surra says due to the extensive damage and the collapse of the roof and first floor, the cause of the fire is undetermined.

Damage is estimated at $120,000.

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Friday, March 9, 2012

SBU's Crowley is Coach of the Year

ESPN.com has named St. Bonaventure women's basketball coach Jim Crowley as its National Coach of the Year.

Crowley has led the No. 16 Bonnies to a program-record 29 wins, first Atlantic 10 Conference regular-season crown and first visit to the A-10 Championship title game. Bonaventure is all but assured a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history. The brackets will be unveiled Monday evening at 7, and a viewing party will be held in the Reilly Center.

~~~~
Take St. Bonaventure to the NCAA tournament? Lead that school into the top 25 and to an undefeated regular-season championship in the Atlantic 10? Make the Bonnies -- the Bonnies -- nationally relevant?

Nobody was supposed to be able to do that. But Jim Crowley did.

Rewind the tape six years, and if St. Bonaventure wasn't the worst women's program in Division I, you could see the bottom of the ladder from where it sat -- making that basement, frankly, about the only thing close to Olean, N.Y.

Seemingly out of its depth in the near-major Atlantic 10 as a school of about 2,000 about 75 miles south of Buffalo, St. Bonaventure began playing Division I women's basketball in 1986. By the time the 2005-06 season wrapped up, the Bonnies owned a 219-339 record in the highest level. That record of futility included just four winning seasons, the grandest of which was a 16-12 campaign. Needless to say, they had no NCAA tournament appearances.

Continue reading ....

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'Real Housewives' Star at Seneca Niagara

NIAGARA FALLS, NY – Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel is about to get “Fabulicious!” this May. Teresa Giudice, star of television shows “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” and “Celebrity Apprentice,” will provide an up-close, interactive, Italian-cooking demonstration at Seneca Niagara Events Center on Saturday, May 12, at 8 p.m.

Tickets start at $25 and are on sale now at all Seneca Casino box offices, Ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster locations and by phone at 800-745-3000. Large video screens on either side of the stage will provide excellent viewing for all attendees. Giudice, a New York Times best-selling author, will cook using recipes from her latest cookbook, Fabulicious!: Teresa’s Italian Family Cookbook.

Giudice, a 39 year-old wife and mother of four daughters, owns an online clothing and accessories boutique – TG Fabulicious LLC – and wrote another New York Times best-selling cookbook, Skinny Italian. She gained fame in 2009 as part of the inaugural cast of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” on the Bravo network and currently demonstrates her business skills on NBC’s “Celebrity Apprentice.” Giudice’s third cookbook – Fabulicious!: Fast and Fit – will hit bookstores on May 15, just three days after her visit to Seneca Niagara Events Center.

In her current cookbook, Fabulicious!: Teresa’s Italian Family Cookbook, Giudice combines her two passions – food and family – in more than 60 Italian recipes. The dishes include homemade pasta, gnocchi, risotto, Italian bread and more, and are made from scratch. Live at Seneca Niagara Events Center on May 12, guests will not only experience Giudice’s culinary skills but also will have the opportunity to ask questions.

Other upcoming entertainment at Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel includes adbacadabra: The Ultimate ABBA Tribute for two shows on March 17, “Blue Collar Tour” comedian Bill Engvall on March 24, Mary Wilson of The Supremes for two shows on March 31 and Lou Gramm from the classic rock band Foreigner on April 6.

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Bonnies Win!

Final score 71-68 ...

More details to follow ....

Box Score

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Real Life 'Weekend at Bernie's'



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State Rep Wants Unemployed
People to do Volunteer Work

Read the story here.

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Hunter James Kelly Institute Opens

The Hunter James Kelly Research Institute officially opened at the University of Buffalo Thursday night.

The state-of-the-art facility is named for the son of Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly and his wife Jill. Hunter suffered from Krabbe Leukodystrophy, and died in 2005 at the age of eight.

The institute has a team of doctors in place to research and study diseases like Hunter’s.

For more information go to HuntersHope.org.

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Teenager Pleads Guilty to Murder

A Potter County teenager has pleaded guilty to third-degree murder in connection to the killing of 18-year-old Samuel Miller of Eldred in June.

16-year-old Kaylynn Benson will be sentenced at 2:30 p.m. May 1, according to the Potter County District Attorney's office. One of her co-defendants, 20-year-old Jonathan Prather of Coudersport, pleaded guilty last month and is scheduled for sentencing on March 26. A third co-defendant, Avery Buckingham of Austin, is awaiting further court action.

The three are accused of taking Miller to an area along Prouty Run Creek in Potter County, where Prather shot him eight times. Prather and Buckingham then dragged his body to the creek and threw him in while Benson held a spotlight. A fisherman found Miller’s body in the creek.

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Sunshine Report for January





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Car Hits Deer in Cameron County

A Bradford man wasn’t hurt after his SUV hit a deer on Route 46 in Cameron County.

Police say 47-year-old Greg Burkhouse was traveling north on 46 when the deer entered the road.

The SUV was disabled.

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Needle Breaks Off in Man's Arm

A Chautauqua County man is facing charges after a hypodermic needle broke off in his arm this morning.

Sheriff’s deputies say fire and rescue crews were called to a home at 3 a.m. and learned 25-year-old Brian Nowak had been using a hypodermic needle when the tip broke off in his arm.

Following an investigation Nowak was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument.

He will answer the charges in Town of Hanover Court.

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Tanker Rollover Near Oil City Closes Road

UPDATE @ 3:30 p.m.: The road has reopened.

PA 227 is closed in both directions from Rouseville to Merrick St. in Oil Creek Township due to an accident involving a tanker truck that has rolled over.

Message boards are in place in Pleasantville, Rouseville and Grandview Rd. (SR 1001) to indicate the detour route.

Traffic is being detoured north on Route 8 to Titusville and then east on State Route 27 to Pleasantville. Headed the other direction, traffic is detoured west on State Route 27 to Titusville and then south on Route 8. Traffic at Grandview and PA 227 is being directed south on PA 227 and from there will pick up Route 8.

PennDOT expect the road to reopen by 4:30 this afternoon.


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Red Cross Gets New Vehicles

In the past few months, the American Red Cross in McKean-Potter Counties received two new response vehicles to better enable the chapter to respond to emergencies in the local area. The 2012 Dodge Ram pickup truck was purchased in October with funding provided by the National Red Cross, and the 7’x16’ Disaster Response Trailer was purchased last month with donations provided by two local supporters. “The trailer will not only be stocked with shelter supplies, but will also be equipped to provide mobile feeding at disaster scenes,” stated executive director, Jason Bange. “This is a much needed addition to our chapter’s response capabilities and we are very grateful to all the donors who made this possible.”
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GT Thompson Supports JOBS Act

U.S. Representative Glenn 'GT' Thompson on Thursday voted to support H.R. 3606, the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, legislation to help expand private capital investment in small businesses. H.R. 3606 passed the House with broad bipartisan support by a vote of 390-23.

“There’s been a significant decline in small business startups in recent years, with Americans unable to acquire the capital necessary to start that business and employers reluctant to take on new endeavors, grow their market share and create more work,” stated Thompson. “Passage of the JOBS Act will help pave the way for more small-scale business development which is critically needed in localities across the country, including the many rural communities of the 5th Congressional District.”

H.R. 3606 reduces certain Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) registration and reporting requirements for small businesses seeking to issue securities and raise funds from investors. The measure also clarifies conditions under which issuers of securities may advertise to potential investors, and defines the conditions under which businesses may raise capital.

“The JOBs Act has bipartisan support here in Washington and from business leaders across the country, and I encourage the Senate to act swiftly on this common sense bill,” Thompson added.

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Casey Statement on February Jobs Report

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Chairman of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), released the following statement on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ February 2012 jobs report showing that 227,000 total nonfarm jobs were added and the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.3 percent:

“I’m encouraged by this month’s jobs report. The solid job growth from the end of 2011 has continued into 2012. February marked the 24th consecutive month of private-sector job gains and the third month in a row where these job gains have exceeded 200,000, yet we are still a long way off from seeing the unemployment rate reach pre-recession levels. While the unemployment rate was unchanged last month, it has declined significantly since September.

Too many Americans haven’t felt the recovery. When workers have to pay more at the pump, they have less to spend on other goods and services. This is tough on families and can also harm the economy. We need a multi-pronged approach on gas prices.

The economy has made good progress. But we need to stay focused on job creation and take actions to ensure that rapidly-rising gas prices do not derail or slow the recovery.”

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Political Muralists from Northern Ireland
Will be Artists in Residence St. Bona's

Three muralists whose work draws thousands of visitors from across the world to the Northern Ireland city of Derry each year will bring their skills and experiences to Western New York this month with a weeklong stay as artists in residence at St. Bonaventure University.

With buildings in the Bogside area of Derry as their giant canvases, Tom Kelly, his brother William and their friend Kevin Hasson spent 12 years commemorating more than 30 years of civil strife and conflict in the six counties of Northern Ireland. The trio has become known as The Bogside Artists.

The 12 murals of what has been dubbed The People’s Gallery stretch in a line the length of Rossville Street in the Bogside area of Derry, which experienced the worst of the troubles throughout the long conflict.

Coinciding with their visit to campus will be an exhibit of their murals, the senior project of St. Bonaventure art major Karen Vester. The exhibit, “Peace and Reconciliation: For Them, For Us, For Me,” will feature large photographs of each of the murals taken by Vester. Other elements of the exhibit will feature creative work by area school students.

The exhibition opens Monday, March 19, and runs through Tuesday, March 27, in the San Damiano Room of Francis Hall. Hours for March 19 are 6 to 9 p.m.; during the remainder of the show, the exhibition will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

While on campus, the Bogside Artists will be joined by students from the Department of Visual and Performing Arts to complete a mural for the university. The theme will be “Freedom of Speech” and the public is invited to stop by, watch the artists paint and ask questions about their work.

A presentation featuring the Bogside artists will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 21, in the San Damiano Room. The program is free and open to the public and will be followed by a reception.

The artists’ visit and the display of their work is made possible through the joint efforts of Vester, the Mychal Judge Center for Irish Exchange and Understanding at St. Bonaventure, and the Lenna Foundation.

The Judge Center is a unique venture that offers student, faculty and cultural exchanges with the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, and the United States, including academic study, service learning, co-curricular seminars, and research.

St. Bonaventure has a strong Irish legacy, which dates back centuries to its founder Nicholas Devereux, who emigrated from County Wexford, Ireland, in 1806.

Area Students Share Their Perspectives

Area high school students will be given a voice in the exhibition. Allegany-Limestone eighth-graders in Nichole Missel’s Advanced Art class will be replicating a Northern Ireland project “In My Shoes,” undertaken by WAVE Trauma Centre and first launched in 2006.

The creative storytelling project has played an important part on the road to peace, reconciliation and healing for many of those traumatized, especially for children. Participants each created a shoe as a means of revisiting and telling the story of how they were impacted by the violence, said Vester.

“Each shoe contains various materials symbolic of different aspects of who they are, the story they are telling, and even the experiences that helped in their recovery. It has been tremendous in the healing process as it brings people together to share what it’s like to be ‘in my shoes’ while imagining what it’s like to be in another’s ‘shoes,’” Vester said.

Each of the Allegany-Limestone students will create a shoe that is representative of who they are, along with a short story describing their shoe.

“I think this is a wonderful idea and opportunity to teach my students about empathy, judgment of others and to further their artistic abilities in expressing themselves,” Missel said.

At Olean High School, English students of Sally Ventura will be writing essays about their understanding of peace and reconciliation. The essays will be hung as part of the exhibit.

Ventura’s students have been studying the poetry of Robert Lax, whose work is archived in Friedsam Memorial Library at St. Bonaventure.

“I am excited about the interdisciplinary connections,” Ventura said. “Students are examining themes related to peace as they are expressed in the visual arts, music and poetry.”

Also on loan to the exhibit is a bronze replica of Hands Across the Divide, a bigger-than-life sculpture located in the roundabout at the Craigavon Bridge, the site of a series of protests against housing conditions in Derry. The replica is on loan from Jack and Maureen Fecio, who are directors of the Belfast Summer Relief Program in Buffalo, which brings children from Northern Ireland to Western New York for a summer holiday. The program, which originated in Belfast in 1975 but moved to Derry eight years later, allows children of Northern Ireland to “get a new perspective on life and the realization that people can live together in peace despite their religious and/or political differences,” Jack Fecio said.

About the Artists

Tom Kelly has been painting murals since long before 1969, seeing in art a means by which Protestants and Catholics can come together. Outside his role as a muralist, he leads a small nondenominational Christian fellowship. He has traveled as part of a humanitarian ministry as well as a spokesman for the Bogside Artists.

William Kelly studied art in Belfast Art College in 1970 and went on to take an honors degree in painting at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin, in 1977.

Kevin Hasson has travelled widely and has painted many murals across Germany. He comes from a family talented in the pictorial arts and in music, and his experiences at a young age in Calcutta, India, as a member of The International Voluntary Service awakened his mind to the ubiquity of social injustice and its roots.

To view maps of campus and directions to the university, visit www.sbu.edu/directions.

To learn more about the Bogside Artists, visit www.bogsideartists.com.

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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Policy Committee Panel Discussion
Focuses on Fallout of AdultBasic Demise


PHILADELPHIA, March 8, 2012 — One year after the low-cost state health coverage plan adultBasic was dismantled, Pennsylvanians are still struggling to purchase or maintain affordable health care.

A panel discussion hosted by the Senate Democratic Policy Committee today at Nazareth Hospital in Northeast Philadelphia examined how last year’s demise of the program, which provided low-cost health care to working Pennsylvanians who made too much to qualify for Medical Assistance, is impacting the 40,000 former adultBasic recipients. More than half of the former enrollees still do not have health insurance.

The hearing was held at the request of state Sen. Mike Stack (D-Phila.), whose district contained the second highest number of adultBasic recipients in the state.

“AdultBasic served to help working individuals who continue to work hard to make ends meet, especially in these difficult economic times. By the time they pay their bills and buy groceries, they have little left to pay for health insurance,” said state Sen. Lisa Boscola (D-Northampton/Lehigh/Monroe), Chair of the Senate Democratic Policy Committee. “While the Governor felt that defunding and ending adultBasic was necessary and unavoidable, it will likely cause more financial headaches. Our challenge is to fully understand what this program’s demise means, and find ways to help people get affordable coverage.”

During recent budget hearings, Pennsylvania Department of Insurance Commissioner Michael F. Consedine noted that only about 30 percent of former adultBasic recipients were enrolled in the alternative health programs Special Care, Medical Assistance, or PA Fair Care.

“There is no benefit to removing people from health insurance. If anything, it’s more costly,” Stack said. “Healthy workers are productive workers, but without health coverage, they forego doctor’s visits. They are forced to wait to deal with a chronic illness, which often results in a trip to the emergency room. That jeopardizes their health and further burdens our health clinics and hospitals.”

Lorrie Lavinsky, a part-time seasonal worker from Philadelphia, said she struggles to pay her bills and the more expensive alternative Special Care health plan, which costs $148 a month compared to the $36 a month adultBasic premium.

“I’m a fighter but it’s hard to find work. I’m praying nothing happens to me,” Lavinsky said. “Trying to pay for Special Care and rent is impossible but I need my home and my health."

“AdultBasic was created for a very specific population. Many of them are people with chronic conditions who need to see a doctor on a regular basis,” said Marissa Harris Krey, advocacy developer for the Lutheran Advocacy Ministry in Pennsylvania. “AdultBasic was a perfect fit for a specific need and since it was eliminated there is no place where they fit in.”

The Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers has reported that calls to its toll-free hotline, which helps connect individuals with health care, has increased by 350 percent, from an average of 200 calls a month to 900 calls a month since adultBasic ended.

The number of daily emergency room visits at 13 hospitals in Pennsylvania with high percentage of Medical Assistance patients has increased in the past year due to the lagging economy, said Brian Eury, regional director of the Delaware Valley Healthcare Council.

“We were disappointed to see expiration of adultBasic,” Eury said. “When people lose their coverage, they are less prone to go to doctor’s office, and when they do show up they are much worse then they would have been.”

Athena Smith Ford, a statewide organizer for the Pennsylvania Health Access Network, agreed, noting that one of her clients, who was a former adultBasic recipient, was in pain but ignored it until she was forced to go to the hospital, which resulted in a five-day stay costing her $70,000.

“It does not make economic sense to deny people of health care,” said Sharon Ward, executive director of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center.

Ward suggested a few ways to pay for reinstating adutlBasic, including repurposing tobacco settlement fund dollars, placing a tax on smokeless tobacco, and talking to Blue Cross and Blue Shield about contributing too.

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

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

Pictured, Sens. Lisa Boscola and Mike Stack discuss the impact of the demise of the adultBasic health care plan at a Senate Democratic Policy Committee hearing in Philadelphia.
Provided by Senator Stack's office

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'Affairs of the Art' Opens Next Week

The ninth annual University of Pittsburgh at Bradford student art exhibit begins Friday, March 16.

Part of the university’s Spectrum Series, “Affairs of the Art” will run until Friday, April 13, in the KOA Art Gallery of Blaisdell Hall. An opening reception with refreshments will take place from noon until 1 p.m. on March 16, in the KOA Speer Electronics Lobby of Blaisdell Hall. Both the show and the reception are free.

Richard Minard, visiting professor of art at Pitt-Bradford, will be hosting the art show this year.

“I was very impressed by the amount of really talented students here at Pitt-Bradford,” Minard said. “I hope to not just showcase student artwork but a diversity of student interests, processes and individual styles and forms of expression.”

More than 40 students will be featured this year with works expressed in simple, traditional and abstract art styles in the forms of ceramic, drawing, print-making, painting, digital photo, watercolor, pastel, charcoal and acrylic.

The following students will be featured in this year’s exhibition:

From Bradford, Stacy Gildersleeve, an interdisciplinary arts major; Max Asinger, a business management major; Toni Duzick, undeclared; Lauren Luciano, a criminal justice major; and Destiny Palmer-DeCasper, a hospitality management major; Ashlee Case, a pre-radiological science major from Olean, N.Y.; Jeremy Freer, a broadcast communication major from Cyclone; Megan Delhunty, a nursing major from Ridgway; and Nyssa Brumagin, an interdisciplinary arts major, Cassie Mashensic, a nursing major, and Christina Hall, a business management major, all from Warren;

Josh Anderson, a criminal justice major, Jennifer Teriberry, a social science major, Janelle Wilson, a pre-radiological science major, Tyler Labeski, a business management major, and Jodie Nelson, a chemistry major, all from Kane; Donald Cox, a sport and recreation management major from Bear, Del.; Tim Tran, a biology major from Northampton; Sierra Kelly, a psychology major from Claystown; Sidney Rice, a psychology major from Butler; Becky Alborn, a sports medicine major from New Castle; John Setzer, double majoring in accounting and business management from Hughesville; Mina Jiang, a pre-pharmacy major from Oakland Gardens, N.Y.;

Mary Gross, a sports medicine major from Ford City; Jennifer Trippett, double majoring in entrepreneurship and interdisciplinary arts from Lemont; Kelly DeRolf, a biology major from Carlisle; Samantha Marsh, a biology major from Kennedy, N.Y.; Daniel Taylor, a computer information system and technology major from Port Allegany; Charles Vandever and Jeffrey Pinchock, both environmental studies majors from Smethport; Revathi Jangiti, a biology major from Quakertown; Justine Dillon, a biology major from Emporium; Susan Thompson, a biology major from Roulette; and Kati Franklin, a Human Relations major from Coudersport.

The gallery is open from 8:30 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 8:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Fridays. The art gallery is closed on Saturdays and Sundays.

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



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Shake a Farmer's Hand,
Set Aside Government's Hammer

By Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (R-Pa.)

National Agriculture Day is important for all of us, even for those who believe milk comes from convenience stores. Dr. Bruce McPheron, Dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences at the Pennsylvania State University, often says, “Though we often take it for granted, most Americans shake hands with a farmer at least three times a day.” No matter how far removed from the farm, all Americans rely on access to an affordable and safe food supply. We often forget or fail to recognize that every day America’s farmers are working to fulfill one of our most basic and life-sustaining needs.

Pennsylvania’s abundant natural resources have made agriculture the Commonwealth’s single largest industry. As in other parts of the country, our farmers know that caring for, improving and protecting the environment in which they live and work is fundamental to their livelihoods and the security of our country.

However, too often the federal government hits farmers with a punitive hammer rather than extending the hand of friendship. This has never been more apparent than the current hammering that farmers across the Mid-Atlantic have been receiving from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA is in the process of implementing Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) regulations on how much nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment can be discharged from the average farm within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.

While the health of the Chesapeake Bay is of primary concern, compliance with these mandates is troublesome because the agriculture community has already been voluntarily and conscientiously working toward the same goal. Farmers have partnered with local communities and state governments to make incredible strides to protect the land they derive their livelihoods from, while simultaneously restoring the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Shared innovations among farmers have allowed reductions in soil erosion, improvements in water quality, increases in farm lands and protections for wildlife habitats.

According to the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service, farmers use residue and tillage management practices, structural practices - or both - on over 96 percent of cropped acres in the region. As a result, the agricultural footprint in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed is dramatically smaller than it was decades ago.

Unfortunately, the true benefits of the EPA’s TMDL requirements are unknown. The EPA has yet to release a cost-benefit analysis, despite moving into phase two of a four-step process. Although we don’t have economic analysis from EPA, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection this will cost at least $8.7 billion for compliance in the Commonwealth alone, which represents just one of six states and the District of Columbia within the Watershed.

Furthermore, the EPA has admitted that the models used for the new requirements are vastly different than models utilized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the original assessment. Anywhere but the federal government, this would be considered bogus science.

We all want to do our part to continue improving the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, but I remain highly skeptical of the EPA’s plans moving forward. Voluntary and collaborative conservation efforts have gone a long way in improving the health of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed while also keeping farms profitable. This is a far better approach than top down government, especially during this economic downturn. Last time I checked, we all like to eat and our farmers are fulfilling that very need. So, let’s shake a farmer’s hand and put the TMDL hammer away.

Rep. Thompson (R-Pa.) represents the 5th Congressional District of Pennsylvania. He is the current Chairman of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy & Forestry.

First published in The Hill's Congress Blog. Used with permission.

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US Senate Rejects Pipeline Measure

The Senate narrowly rejected a GOP-sponsored measure that would have bypassed the Obama administration's objections to the Keystone XL pipeline and allowed construction on the controversial project to begin.

Fifty-six senators voted in favor of the amendment -- four short of the 60 required for approval.

The proposed 1,700-mile long pipeline expansion, intended to carry crude oil from Canada's oil sands to the U.S. Gulf Coast, has become a political lightning rod. Supporters, including the oil industry, say it's a vital job creator that will lessen the country's dependence on oil imported from volatile regions.

Opponents say the pipeline may leak, and that it will lock the United States into a particularly dirty form of crude that might ultimately end up being exported anyway.

President Barack Obama rejected a bid in January to expedite the pipeline, arguing that a decision deadline imposed by Congress did not le ave sufficient time to conduct necessary reviews. Administration officials have said the president may still eventually give the project a green light, though critics accuse him of trying to delay a final decision until after the November election.

Obama personally lobbied wavering Democrats to block passage of the amendment.

Two Dead in Western Psych Shooting

(CNN) -- Two people died and seven are being treated for injuries after a shooting Thursday afternoon inside the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, the center said on Twitter, citing police.

In a post a few minutes later, the medical center said police had indicated that one of the two "confirmed dead ... is believed to be the shooter."

For continuing coverage go to CNN.com.

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'Mike & Molly' Star to Appear at LucyFest

Billy Gardell, co-star of the CBS sitcom Mike & Molly, will be the headline performer for LucyFest 2012.

The festival will be held August 1 to 5.

Comedienne Paula Poundstone makes a return trip to the festival. She performed during last year's LucyFest.

Lucie Arnaz, daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, will also be in Jamestown for the festival.

Tickets for Gardell's performance will go on sale April 17.

For more information about LucyFest 2012 go to Lucy-Desi.com.

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Pennsylvania Trying to Fight Fraud,
Trafficking in Food Stamp Program

Harrisburg – Pennsylvania’s efforts to protect the integrity of the food stamp program include a strong focus on curbing trafficking in benefit cards and fraud at the retail level, Inspector General Kenya Mann Faulkner today told a Congressional panel in Washington, D.C.

Faulkner testified before the U.S. House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform, which is examining fraud within the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, more commonly known as food stamps.

“Governor Tom Corbett believes that it is important for Pennsylvania to provide health and human services, such as SNAP, to its truly deserving citizens,” Faulkner said. “Individuals who engage in fraud take away those limited resources from the neediest of Pennsylvanians.”

Faulkner said the Office of Inspector General (OIG) works closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Services division, which oversees the SNAP program, and also the Department of Public Welfare, which administers SNAP at the state level.

In addition to its efforts to combat SNAP fraud at the application stage or through prosecuting overpayments, the OIG focuses on fraud involving recipients who sell or exchange their SNAP benefits to negotiate them into cash, services, credit or anything other than food, which is defined as “SNAP trafficking,” Faulkner testified.

In this type of scheme, a retailer, working with a customer, will transact SNAP benefits through an Electronic Benefits Transfer, or EBT, card -- but instead of the customer receiving food, the vendor and cardholder simply split the cash.

“The OIG’s responsibility in its partnership with the USDA is to actively pursue the recipients who traffic their benefits and hold them individually accountable for their actions; to include criminal prosecution, repayment of illegally transacted benefits, and program disqualification,” Faulkner explained.

In the 2010-11 fiscal year, the Office of Inspector General conducted 584 SNAP trafficking investigations. These resulted in 158 administrative hearings, with total restitution of $258,375. In addition, 77 recipients who committed SNAP trafficking were disqualified, which resulted in significant additional cost savings.

The Office of Inspector General’s Bureau of Fraud Prevention and Prosecution is responsible for investigating welfare fraud and conducting collection activities for programs administered by, or contracted through, the Department of Public Welfare.

The Office of Inspector General also relies on tips from concerned citizens. To report suspected fraud, call the Welfare Fraud Tipline at 1-800-932-0582. Callers may remain anonymous. For more information or to read the full testimony, visit the Pennsylvania Office of Inspector General online at www.oig.state.pa.us.
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Watch the Bonnies Punch Their Ticket to
March Madness at a Party in the RC

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. — If you're going to the big dance, you might as well have a party first.

To celebrate the greatest season in St. Bonaventure women's basketball history, the campus and Greater Olean communities are invited to an NCAA Selection Show Party Monday night at Bob Lanier Court in the Reilly Center. Admission is free.

"Coach Crowley and the team have been so grateful for the outpouring of community support for the team that they hope as many people as possible can attend to share in this remarkable moment of achievement with them," said Sr. Margaret Carney, O.S.F., university president.

Doors to the event open at 6:15 p.m., with pre-ESPN festivities — including season highlight videos and player introductions — to begin about 6:40.

ESPN will unveil the field of 64 teams beginning at 7 p.m., with the last bracket to be announced at approximately 7:40. The broadcast will be shown on a giant screen. SBU-TV will also air an hour-long live special that will be streamed for free on GoBonnies.com.

Despite losing a heartbreaker in the Atlantic 10 title game Monday to Dayton, the Bonnies — 29-3 and ranked 16th in the latest AP poll — are all but guaranteed a spot in the field.

Before the broadcast begins and during ESPN commercial breaks after 7 p.m., prizes — including St. Bonaventure 150th anniversary history books and Tim Hortons gift cards — will be awarded to winners of select SCVNGR contests. The grand prize is an iPad, but one must be present to win and have participated in the SCVNGR game.

SCVNGR is a mobile game where players go places and play games on their phones or smart devices. To play on iPhone and Android, download the SCVNGR app and find the "Basketball Selection Show" trek. Users of other phones can play by texting "sbuselection" without quotes to 728647 (SCVNGR).

Once the Bonnies' place in the NCAA field is revealed, Athletic Director Steve Watson, A-10 Coach of the Year Jim Crowley and team captains will speak briefly before heading to a press conference.

Following the event's conclusion, the SBU Bookstore will sell commemorative T-shirts at a table on the court located at the North endzone (opposite of the Hall of Fame Room).

Tentative plans are also in the works for a sendoff celebration when the team leaves campus next week for their first-round game; details will be announced later when travel plans are finalized on Tuesday.

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BAHS Playoff Ticket Update

Pre-sale adult tickets for the Bradford Lady Owls state playoff game Saturday against Blackhawk are gone. There are some student pre-sale tickets left. Some tickets will be available at the gate Saturday afternoon.

There are about 50 20 adult tickets left for Owls state playoff game Friday night against Montour. There are student pre-sale tickets left as well. There will be some tickets at the gate Friday night.

You'll hear the Owls state playoff Friday night at 6:50 on 1490 WESB and WESB.com The unbeaten Lady Owls game airs at 3:50 Saturday afternoon, also on 1490 WESB and WESB.com


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TVTA We Gotta Regatta Set for May



The news leader of the Twin Tiers ...
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No Problems Yet as Solar Storm Hits Earth

This year's most closely watched solar storm is sweeping over our planet right now, and so far the impact on satellites, power grids and communication networks is not as severe as some had feared, space weather experts say.

However, they cautioned that the storm could intensify as the day goes on.

Read more at Today.MSNBC.MSN.com.

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since 1947

Bona Women Thank Supporters

The following is a letter from head coach Jim Crowley and the entire St. Bonaventure women's basketball program on the support it has received this season.


From all of us associated with the St. Bonaventure women's basketball program, we want to send out our sincerest thanks to everyone who has supported us throughout this magical season.

The amazing response we have been given on campus, in the community and everywhere we go means so much to all of us. This past weekend at the Atlantic 10 Championship in Philadelphia, you helped create an atmosphere which more resembled a home game at the Reilly Center than a neutral-site contest. Thank you for everyone who made the trip, and also to those who passed along congratulatory notes.

We want to extend a special thank you to all of the women's basketball alumni who have wished us well, been to games and supported us from afar. Our success comes from all of your hard work, dedication and passion for this University and our program.

We are optimistic that we have more basketball to play, and we are hopeful you will continue to support us as we will continue to do all we can to make all of you proud.

Go Bona's!

Head Coach Jim Crowley & the entire St. Bonaventure Women's Basketball Program


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PennDOT Supervisor Charged for
Issuing Driver's Licenses to Fugitives

The Pennsylvania State Police, Bureau of Criminal Investigation conducted an investigation at the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT); Malvern Driver’s License Center located at 225 Lancaster Avenue, in East Whiteland Township, Chester County.

This investigation started when the PennDOT uncovered that driver’s licenses were being issued to imposters posing as existing persons. This investigation concluded when the Pennsylvania State Police, Bureau of Criminal Investigations, filed criminal charges against a PennDOT Malvern Driver’s License Supervisor, Khalif Abdullah Ali (43) of Philadelphia. Ali was assisting individuals, who are fugitives from justice, to obtain new identities to avoid apprehension.

Ali was charged with Tampering with Public Records or Information (Felony 3 – 3 counts), Conspiracy to Commit Identity Theft (Felony 3 – 3 counts), Hindering Apprehension or Prosecution (Felony 3 – 3 counts), and Computer Trespass (Felony 3 – 3 counts); 3rd degree felonies are punishable by up to 7 years of imprisonment. Ali was arraigned at the Chester County District Court 15-2-05. He was committed to the Chester County Prison after failing to post $20,000 bail. A preliminary hearing has been tentatively scheduled for March 14, 2012.

The Pennsylvania State Police extends their gratitude to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Office of Risk Management for ther assistance in this investigation.

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Off-Broadway Black-Light Puppet Show
Swims into Bromeley Theater March 15

“ImaginOcean,” a black-light musical puppet show by Tony Award-nominated puppeteer John Tartaglia, will swim into Bromeley Family Theater March 15.

Students from area schools will enjoy two matinee performances during the day as part of Pitt-Bradford’s Kaleidoscope series, but those who don’t see it during the day can catch the special 7 p.m. public performance. Tickets are $7 for students; $8 for adults.

“ImaginOcean” is the brainchild of Tartaglia, who was the executive director, creator and star of the eight-time Emmy-nominated children’s show “Johnny and the Sprites.” He also earned a Tony Award nomination for his Broadway debut in the Tony Award-winning musical “Avenue Q,” a grown-up puppet show.

His other roles on Broadway have included Lumiere in “Beauty and the Beast” and Pinocchio in “Shrek The Musical.” He got his start working for 12 years on “Sesame Street,” beginning at the age of 16. He is currently developing several live shows including directing “The Musical Worlds of Jim Henson” at Carnegie Hall next month.

“ImaginOcean” played the New World Stages in New York through Sept. 4 before embarking on a 30-city national tour. The 50-minute production opened in March 2010 and features original songs and three loveable fish.

For more information or tickets, contact the Bromeley Theater Box office at (814)362-5113.

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




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since 1947

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Penguin Escapes from Aquarium

The Tokyo Aquarium is searching for a penguin known as No. 337 after the bird scaled a rock wall and escaped. watch Today.com's here.

The news leader of the Twin Tiers ...
since 1947

NBC: Solar Blast May Have Earthly Impact



Read all about it at MSNBC.com.


The news leader of the Twin Tiers ...
since 1947