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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Coudersport House Damaged by Fire

Fire damaged a Coudersport house late Friday afternoon.

State Police fire marshal David Surra says the fire at 132 Resse Hollow Road started in the living room because a faulty three-way plug was plugged into an electrical outlet.

Damage is estimated at $15,000.

The house owned by Michael Spong is unoccupied and Surra says no injuries were reported.

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You Did It!

Some of us here at 1490 WESB were waiting for the day to come -- and it did on Monday. We got our 1,490th "like" on Facebook!

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has liked us so far. But we don't want to stop there.

If you haven't liked us yet go here and do it. Please? And thank you in advance.

The next Facebook milestone we're waiting for? 1,001 likes for The Hero. We're almost there. Like us here.

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Veteran Honored with Overdue Medals

OLEAN – When Sergeant First Class Glenn Treaster stopped by Senator Catharine Young’s office in Olean to inquire about military medals, he had no idea he would be receiving so many awards.

“When I learned about the medals, I thought, ‘You’ve got to be kidding.’ To me, this is awesome. I am getting something I didn’t know I had coming. I’m being honored. I’m on top of the world,” Sergeant Treaster said.

Senator Young presented Sergeant Treaster with medals during a special ceremony at Central Baptist Church, where he serves as a substitute minister. The awards Sergeant Treaster received for his service, included the United States Army Achievement Medal with Device, New York State Medal for Merit, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, and Cold War Recognition Certificate.

He also earned the United States Army Achievement Medal with Device, New York State Medal for Merit, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, United States Army Career Counselor Badge, Air Force Longevity Service Ribbon, Professional Development Ribbon with Device (3), Army Reserve Overseas Service Ribbon, United States Army Service Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Army Marksman Badge with Auto Rifle Bar, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, United States Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, and Air Force Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon

“Sergeant Treaster’s service to the military is inspiring. He dedicated more than seven years to the U.S. Air Force and then re-enlisted with the Army Reserves to serve approximately 20 years with that branch.

Our veterans deserve the utmost respect and I am thankful for the opportunity to show my appreciation to Sergeant Treaster for his courage, enthusiasm for and devotion to the military,” she said.

Sergeant Treaster said, “Sometimes I don’t know what to say, but I am proud. Receiving these medals lifts my pride. It’s an honor to me to have Senator Young present me with them, not only because of my service but because of her service. It’s a wonderful thing to have a Senator who cares so much about people.”

David Treaster, one of Sergeant Treaster’s brothers, said, “This hasn’t happened often in our family. Glenn did a lot I didn’t know about, and I’m proud of him. It’s quite something to see your brother honored like that.”

Sergeant Treaster’s oldest brother Mahlon Treaster, added, “I’m so proud of him. He’s a good Christian man, and a good testament for this country.”

Reverend Alan Yates, pastor of Central Baptist Church, added, “I’ve known Glenn for 10 years. I’m very proud of his service and what he’s done, not only in the military but for our church. This is very special for him.”

Sergeant Treaster, originally from Carlisle, Pennsylvania, became a Civil Air Patrol Cadet while a student in the 1950s. He joined the U.S. Air Force in April 1960, just after graduation.

After completing basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, he went to Amarillo, Texas, for technical school.

Sergeant Treaster moved to Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina and served with the 507th Communications and Control Group of the Tactical Air Command for more than three years. He later was reassigned to Detachment 1 of the 507th Communications and Control Group at Auxiliary Field 3 at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida where he performed the same tactical support
function as his unit with the 507th at Shaw Air Force Base.

During the Vietnam War, Sergeant Treaster spent over eight months in the Dominican Republic before he received orders to serve as a records clerk with the 1933rd Communications Squadron at Harmon Air Force Base from October 1965 until its closure in 1966.

Sergeant Treaster then took an assignment at Westover Air Force Base in Massachusetts, where he joined the 4305 Support Squadron, Eighth Air Force – Strategic Air Command until his discharge from the Air Force.

From 1980 until September 2000, Sergeant Treaster served as a part of the Headquarters 3rd Battalion under the 98th Regiment, 4th Brigade of the 98th Division with the Army Reserves. This was a combat-ready infantry reserve unit during the Cold War, which was started in World War I. They were nicknamed the “Iroquois.”

Following his discharge, he attended the Baptist Bible Seminary in Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania. He graduated in 1971 and worked as a pastor for a few years. He also accepted employment at Dresser-Clark, AVX, First Presbyterian Church in Olean, and the Olean City School District. He
retired from Ivers J. Norton in 2002, after having worked there for 21 years

Veterans with questions about medals or other issues should call Senator Young’s office at (800) 707-0058 or email

Pictured, Senator Young presented overdue medals to United States Air
Force Veteran Glenn Treaster during a special ceremony at Central Baptist
Church on Saturday morning.

Courtesy of Senator Young's office

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Travel Delays at US-Canada Border

If you’re headed to Canada today, make sure you have plenty of gas in your car for the trip back to the U.S.

The Niagara International Transportation Technology Coalition is reporting delays of up to 3 hours for people coming into the United States. The delays on the Peace Bridge and Lewiston-Queenston are 2 to 3 hours. The delays on the Rainbow Bridge are from 1 to 2 hours.

The wait to get into Canada could be up to half an hour.

Updates are available here:

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Why Did the Rabbits Cross the Road?

To get to the rabbits on the other side, of course.

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Independence Day Celebrations Underway

With Independence Day coming up on Wednesday people’s thoughts turn to fireworks and if you’re really in the mood for them now, you’re in luck. There’s a show tonight.

At Ellicottville’s Summer Festival of the Arts, which started on Friday, the Buffalo Philharmonic will perform starting at 8 o’clock tonight, and that will be followed by a fireworks display to "The 1812 Overture" and "Stars and Stripes Forever."

Fireworks, parades, concerts and baseball games continue through the 4th of July across the region. For a list of all the area celebrations visit our community calendar.

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Friday, June 29, 2012

Scarnati: SCOTUS Ruling Severely Flawed

WESB/WBRR News Director

Senator Joe Scarnati is one of the people who is not happy with Thursday’s Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Health Care Act.

Back in March, the state Senate approved a measure by Scarnati that would amend the state Constitution to prohibit Pennsylvanians from being required to obtain health insurance coverage or from being penalized for not doing so.

“It becomes very apparent that our state’s rights and individual rights continue to be trampled, not only in Pennsylvania but across the nation,” he said today of the Supreme Court’s ruling.

Scarnati said Senate Bill 10 would give voters an opportunity to say “yes” or “no” to the “individual mandate” provision of the health care act, which says Americans must purchase health insurance by 2014 or face escalating financial penalties as high as 2.5 percent of their total household income.

The Supreme Court ruling did say imposing a penalty was unconstitutional, but if it’s called a tax it would be constitutional.

Scarnati said while his bill was introduced in response to “Obamacare,” its main purpose is to address the issue of federal government overreach and intrusion on state rights and individual liberty.

He said today that by voting in favor of the bill lawmakers “can give Pennsylvanians the right to stand up and voice their opinion on this severely flawed ruling.”

While the bill passed the Senate in March it is still sitting in House, which tabled it last week.

“I would hope that the House of Representatives moves Senate Bill 10 to allow every Pennsylvanian to stand up for their rights and the rights of individual states,” Scarnati said.

In order to amend the constitution a bill must pass in two consecutive sessions of the Legislature and then be approved by voters.

Legislators in more than 20 states have sponsored similar proposals, while voters already have passed such amendments in Arizona, Ohio and Oklahoma. Four more will have a similar question on November ballots, Scarnati said.

Thanks to Hanson Quickel!

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Senate Approves State Budget

The state Senate today approved a fiscally responsible, sustainable state budget that does not increase taxes and restores funding for education and human service programs, said Senate Appropriations Committee Jake Corman (R-Bellefonte).

Senate Bill 1466 fully restores funding for Pennsylvania's state-related universities and State System of Higher Education schools. In return, the presidents of these institutions have agreed to keep tuition increases to a minimum – no higher than the Consumer Price Index.

"Restoring funding for higher education is a big win for residents across the Commonwealth," said Corman. "Our public colleges and universities are one of the best resources we have for economic development and job creation. Additionally, state funding helps keep access to high levels of education open for individuals at all income levels."

By fully restoring funding for Pennsylvania's public higher education institutions, the schools have stated that they will now be able to keep tuition increases to a minimum. "Providing high quality education at an affordable rate directly impacts the budgets of everyone across the state who is contributing to these universities' student costs," said Corman. "I am very happy that we were able to work out this agreement with the universities."

The bill also includes more than $149 million in additional support for local school districts over what the Governor requested in February. These moneys will assist the Commonwealth's fiscally distressed school districts and restore funding for early childhood education programs provided through the Pennsylvania Accountability Grant program.

"The $27.65 billion spending plan is the result of a careful and thorough study of the Governor's request and the trends we have seen in revenue collections," Corman said. "It maintains state support for education at all levels and ensures that we have a safety net in place to help those in need."

Corman said the budget is based on Senate Republicans belief that controlling government spending and rejecting tax hikes is crucial to moving Pennsylvania toward economic recovery.

"In these fiscally challenging times you have to make tough choices, but we also recognize that providing a quality education to kids of all ages is one of our most important responsibilities," Corman said. "This budget includes funding to help counties and local agencies provide essential social and health services and programs for senior citizens and those with physical and mental disabilities."

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House Passes Highway Bill Reauthorization

Package Reauthorizes Secure Rural Schools &
Payment-In-Lieu-of-Taxes Programs

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson today voted to support H.R. 4348, a bipartisan House-Senate Highway Bill agreement that reauthorizes federal highway and transportation programs through the end of fiscal year 2014.

Thompson on June 14th initiated a bipartisan letter to the House-Senate Highway Bill Conference Committee urging dedicated funding levels for bridges not on federal-aid highways, otherwise known as “off-system bridges,” which was included in the final agreement. H.R. 4348 passed the U.S. House by a vote of 373-52.

“This reauthorization offers critical resources for our states and localities to improve road safety and boost economic activity,” said Thompson. “Adequate funding levels for the Off-system Bridge Program will ensure that communities not on federal-aid highways, including many rural communities in the 5th District, are able to undertake bridge safety improvements without undue financial burden.”

H.R. 4348 also includes reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools program, which funds county expenses for public schools, road improvement projects, forest restoration and improvement projects in and around national forests. This funding is critical for many forest communities around the country who have seen significant losses in county revenue as a direct result of reduced timber harvesting on national forests.

Additionally the Payment-In-Lieu-of-Taxes program, or PILT, was reauthorized for one year. Similar to Secure Rural Schools, this nationwide program is vital to rural communities as it provides federal payments to local governments to help offset losses in property taxes due to non-taxable federal land within national forest boundaries.

“Counties in or close to national forests, such as those in an around the Allegheny National Forest, have been hit by hard economic times and rely on timber harvesting as a major economic engine for the region,” Thompson added. “The extensions of Secure Rural Schools and Payment-In-Lieu-of Taxes will provide a stable revenue stream to these communities, so that counties can provide basic services and children can access the education resources they deserve.”

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Break-In at Frito-Lay Warehouse

Some people from Chautauqua County apparently were trying to stock up on snacks for their holiday parties.

State police say at 2 a.m. Thursday they were called to a break-in at the Frito-Lay warehouse in Dunkirk. They interviewed a delivery truck driver who witnessed several people leaving the business, and then learned that someone had broken into the building.

Their investigation led them to a house where they – quote – recovered proceeds from the break-in. They did not specify what those proceeds were.

Police charged 20-year-old Marqus Singh and 17-year-old Stephanie Conklin, both of Fredonia, and 27-year-old Jennifer Melendez-Contreras of Dunkirk, with burglary. They were all sent to jail in lieu of $20,000 cash bail.

Can you get Doritos in jail?

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A Hot Week Ahead

The National Weather Service in State College says hot and muggy conditions will prevail over the upcoming weekend and into next week, as a weak cold front stalls near the Pennsylvania, Maryland border.

Temperatures in this area will be in the mid- to upper 80s through Thursday with only a 20 percent chance of rain.

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Home Makeover Winner Announced

Joan Lucarini of MacDonald, Pennsylvania has won the $25,000 Home Makeover Sweepstakes sponsored by Northwest Savings Bank.

The local bank presented her with her award when Amber Castellana, Manager of the Northwest’s MacDonald Office, John Mendel, Manager of the South Hills District of Northwest, and Christopher Martin, President of the Southwest Region of the bank gave her a check for the full amount at the bank’s MacDonald Office on June 26.

Agents of the local bank drew Ms. Lucarini’s name from over one hundred thousand entries submitted at community home shows and Northwest’s community banking locations across Pennsylvania, Ohio and Maryland, according to Dorothy Lobdell, Senior Vice President, Retail Lending, of Northwest Savings Bank. “We conducted this contest to highlight our ties to housing,” she said. “We’ve helped people buy and renovate their homes since we were founded in 1896. We felt that, in addition to great interest rates and great service, allowing one of our customers to carry out a home makeover would be a great way to thank our customers, friends and neighbors for their patronage and support.”

Pictured, members of the management team from Northwest Saving Bank presented a check for $25,000 to the winner of the bank’s Home Makeover Sweepstakes on June 26 at the Northwest McDonald Office. From left are Chris Martin, President of the Southwest Region of Northwest Savings Bank, Joan Lucarini of MacDonald, Pennsylvania, winner of the sweepstakes, Amber Castellana, Manager of Northwest’s MacDonald Office, and John Mendel, Manager of the South Hills District of Northwest Savings Bank.

Courtesy of Northwest Savings

Shell’s Tioga County Methane Geyser

Read the accompanying story by Scott Detrow at

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Fire at Old Johnsonburg Hotel

For the second time in a year firefighters were called to a fire at the abandoned Old Johnsonburg Hotel.

The first fire was believed to be arson, and so is the one that was reported at about 9 o’clock Thursday morning. Firefighters say all the utilities in the building are off, and that’s an indication that the fire was intentionally set.

When firefighters arrived at the building on East Center Street they saw smoke coming from the second and third floor windows. They put the fire out in about 15 minutes.

If this fire is determined to be arson it would be the third in Elk County this month. The first two were house fires.

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PennDOT Lists Next Week's Road Work

Ridgway/Cyclone -- PENNDOT Elk/McKean County Maintenance has announced work for the week of July 02, 2012 through July 06, 2012

Maintenance work planned by Elk County employees includes:

 GUIDERAIL REPAIR – SR 948, Highland area

 PIPE FLUSHING – SR 3002, Erwintown Hill

 SIDE DOZING – SR 948, SR 1006 & SR 1006, Various Routes, Johnsonburg area

 MILLING & FILLING – SR 2010 & SR 1001, St. Marys area

 SIGN MAINTENANCE- Various Routes, County wide

 MOWING – Various Routes, County wide

Maintenance work planned by McKean County employees includes:

 BRIDEG REPAIRS– 4011, Sullivan Road

 MILL & FILL – SR 646, Tip Top to Rew

 FILLING LOW SHOULDERS - SR 6, Smethport area & SR 646, Tip Top to Rew

 SIDE DOZING – SR 6 & SR 646, Smethport area

 SIGN MAINTENANCE – Various Routes, County wide

 MOWING – Various Routes, Kane & Bradford area.

 GUIDERAIL REPAIRS – Various Routes, County wide

 DITCHING– Various Routes, Kane & Mt. Jewett area

SR 1001 Glenn Hazel, Elk County (July 02, 2012-July 06, 2012) LC Whitford

Work has begun on the bridge over Crooked Creek on SR 1001 between Glen Hazel and Taft Road.

The contractor has no work scheduled for this week.

Please be advised the bridge will remain closed until its completion.

Please drive with caution on the detour as the traffic along the detour is higher than normal.

Sr-1014 / C01-Osterhout Street, Ridgway (July 02, 2012 – July 06, 2012) New Enterprise Lime & Stone, Inc.

This project consists of the total reconstruction and realignment of sr-1014 (Osterhout St) and intersection improvement at SR-0219 (No. Broad St.) and SR-0948 (Main St.) both locations within Ridgway Borough.

The contractor is scheduled to continue with hillside excavation, fill placement and drainage work next week. Material will be hauled from the project site to the stockpile area located ½ mile east on SR-0120.

Please be cautious of trucks and equipment entering / exiting project for this work.

Work to be performed Monday through Thursday during daylight hours and all operations and schedules are weather dependent.


SR 4001 / A01, ECMS# 4335 McKean County (July 02, 2012-July 06, 2010) LC Whitford

SR 4001, Seg/Off 0140/0785 to 0140/1220, Lewis Run Borough.

The detour is in place for this project. The contractor will continue driving sheet piling and begin demolition of the existing bridge. Drainage work will continue.


All work is weather dependent. Be alert for construction vehicles entering and exiting construction areas.

SR 255 Sec. 814- Million Dollar Highway (July 02, 2012-July 06, 2012) New Enterprise Stone and Lime Co., Inc.

CHANGING TRAFFIC PATTERNS: The following work will be performed from approximately Green Briar Drive (T-593) to the intersection at Tractor Supply.

When work in one lane is completed, it will be reopened to traffic and another lane will be closed. One lane northbound and one lane southbound will be closed to perform the work. One lane in each direction will remain open to traffic at all times. Motorists are advised to be alert for changing traffic patterns.

The contractor will be patching the existing concrete pavement at various locations with blacktop and will place a bituminous leveling course over the existing concrete pavement. Contractor will be removing the existing Guiderail and begin benching existing slopes and placing rock armor.

Motorists are advised to watch for slow moving and stopped vehicles through the entire work zone.

Anticipated work is weather dependent.

Motorists can visit the PENNDOT website at and by clicking on the Statewide Construction Map for updates concerning ongoing projects.

Citizens who want to report road concerns can call PENNDOT Maintenance at 1-800-FIX-ROAD (1-800-349-7623).

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A Little Light Show

For those of you who were not awake at around 2:30 this morning here's a view from the Jackson Avenue/Davis Street area of Bradford:

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Salcedo Nominated as Woman of the Year

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – Just like they've done throughout their careers as student-athletes, Justine Raterman and Manuela Marin Salcedo have another chance to represent the Atlantic 10 Conference among the NCAA's elite.

The A-10 announced Thursday that Raterman, a Dayton women's basketball standout, and Salcedo, a St. Bonaventure women's tennis student-athlete, will be the Atlantic 10 Conference nominees for the NCAA Woman of the Year award.

The pair will join nominees from member institutions from all three NCAA divisions. The NCAA Woman of the Year Award honors graduating student-athletes who have distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate careers in the areas of academic achievement, athletics excellence, service and leadership.

Hailing from Weston, Fla., Salcedo was a four-year standout, playing No.1/No.2 singles and doubles for Bona women's tennis. An All-Conference selection in three of her four years, Salcedo served as team captain and also was a member of the Bonnies' Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). She led Bona to four A-10 Women's Tennis Championship appearances, herself competing in each of those tournaments.

An honors student, Salcedo graduated this spring Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Journalism/Mass Communication and minors in English and Italian. The impressively multi-lingual Salcedo is fluent in Spanish, English and French and proficient in Italian. A Dean's List member, she was awarded the Dr. Mary A. Hamilton Woman of Promise Award and is a recipient of the SBU student-athlete merit award.

Besides exemplifying the term student-athlete, Salcedo, who has studied abroad at Oxford in England, also has a strong attraction to photography. She worked as the photo editor for the Bona student newspaper The Intrepid and as a photographer for the independent student paper The Bona Venture. She has assisted Buffalo Bills photographer Craig Melvin and is a recipient of the prestigious Father Cornelius Welch Award for Achievement in Photography. This award is given to one journalism/mass communications senior each year.

Salcedo's honors thesis involved travel to Rincon del Mar, a small coastal village in Columbia, where she studied the village's culture and story, hoping to help the people of the tiny town. Instead, she found the people of Rincon del Mar helping and teaching her on her journey through life.

Both A-10 candidates will be reviewed by the NCAA, which will then announce the top 10 honorees per division in August. That list will be narrowed to three finalists in each division and the Woman of the Year will be awarded on Oct. 14 at a ceremonial dinner. The NCAA established the Woman of the Year Award in 1991 to celebrate the achievements of women in intercollegiate athletics. From 1998 through 2005, an average of 410 female student-athletes per year were nominated for the award; and since the program's inception in 1991, 2200 women have been recognized as state or conference honorees.

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Hinsdale Teen Charged with Burglary

An 18-year-old from Hinsdale is charged with burglary for an alleged incident that happened during Memorial Day weekend.

John Fratarcangelo is accused of breaking into a house on Route 16 in the Town of Hinsdale and stealing more than $1,000 worth of items. Sheriff’s deputies did not provide additional information about the grand larceny.

He was released on his own recognizance and is scheduled to appear in Town of Hinsdale Court on July 18.

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Three Picked Up for Having Bath Salts

Two men and a woman are accused of having bath salts in Roulette on Wednesday afternoon.

State police say agents from the state parole board asked them to go to 48 River Street, where they found 21-year-old Kimberly Bisher and 19-year-old Gabriel Weinberg, both of Roulette, and 22-year-old Robert Hamilton II of Port Allegany with suspected bath salts and drug paraphernalia.

Hamilton was taken to Potter County Jail on a parole violation. Weinberg was taken into custody by the McKean County Probation Department. Bisher was taken by ambulance to Charles Cole Memorial Hospital.

Hamilton is charged with felony count of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance. He and the others are also charged with misdemeanor drug law violations. Hamilton is in Potter County Jail on $20,000 bail.

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Man Jailed for Manslaughter Now Charged
with Assaulting an Inmate

A Jamestown man already jailed on 2 counts of first degree manslaughter is accused of assaulting another inmate in the Chautauqua County Jail.

41-year-old Gregory Pattison allegedly hit the other person, causing facial injuries and bruising on his head and face. He is charged with assault and will appear in Town of Chautauqua Court to answer the charge, according to Chautauqua County Sheriff's Deptuies.

Pattison pleaded guilty June 20 to killing Richard Alicea Jr. and Johnny Houston back in 2001. He was convicted of murder back in 2005 but the conviction was overturned on a technicality.

Pattison was hired by two drug dealers to kill Alicea, who was an informant for the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force and took more than $150,000 worth of drugs from them.

The drug dealers, Aaron Pike and Daniel Diaz were convicted for their roles in the murders and are still in prison.

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Nearly 3,000 Still Without Power

10:45 a.m. UPDATE: All power has been restored

9:45 a.m. UPDATE: Power has been restored to all but a handful of customers

About 2,800 Bradford-area Penelec customers are still without power after a tree fell near a substation on Route 770 at about 8 o’clock this morning.

Penelec’s Linda Routzhan says the outage affected about 5,000 customers, but crews were able to restore power to some of them. She said crews were able to isolate the area affected by the fallen tree, and are working to fix the lines and restore the rest of the power.

She said there’s not estimate on when all power will be restored, but crews will be working until all customers have power.

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

From Olean to Orlando
Nicholson is Magic

Yes, I know St. Bonaventure in Allegany but ... Oh, that's beside the point.

The Orlando Magic chose St. Bonaventure's Andrew Nicholson with the 19th pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.

How 'bout from Ontario to Orlando?

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Gabler Supports ‘Responsible' Budget

HARRISBURG – State Rep. Matt Gabler (R-Clearfield Elk) voted Thursday to support the proposed state budget, which now faces a final vote in the state Senate. The bill, which passed with a bipartisan vote of 120-81, proposes $27.7 billion in total General Fund spending for Fiscal Year 2012-13. It contains no tax increases and returns spending to 2008-09 pre-stimulus levels, with growth that is less than the rate of inflation.

Gabler issued the following statement upon passage by the House:

“Pennsylvanians want elected officials to abide by the same principles in crafting a state budget that they do when crafting their household budgets. They want us to be good stewards of their tax dollars, live within our means and use the revenues they send us to support the core functions of state government while giving taxpayers the best value for their money. While not perfect -- no budget or piece of legislation ever is -- this spending plan meets that criterion, which is why it drew my support.

“Basic education is one of those core functions, and financial support for schools in the 75th District will exceed 2011-12 levels. Accountability block grants, which give our schools flexibility, have been restored to $100 million in this budget. Furthermore, the proposed block grant structure that our school districts opposed has been eliminated, and individual line items were restored.

“The original budget proposed in February included a 20 percent cut to funding for human service programs administered by counties. We managed to restore a substantial portion of these funds, while opposing a proposal to restructure them, something our local county officials did not support. This restored funding will enable citizens on waiting lists to be served and reduce the pressure on our local county budgets.

“The restorations made in this budget were possible because of fiscally responsible decisions we made during last year’s budget process. While some opponents of last year’s budget called for an additional $1 billion in the 2011-12 budget, we knew that was simply unrealistic. As we have settled on economically sustainable numbers, this year’s $27.656 billion General Fund Budget shows we can set responsible priorities while living within our means.

“Passage of this budget continues the effort to reduce the size of government, leaving it more fit, trim and efficient than in recent years while upholding our responsibilities to vital programs. We began this budget process with a $700 million shortfall and were forced to plan for the worst while hoping for the best. This is the best Pennsylvania can do with existing revenues, as we learn again to spend no more than we have, not what we wish we had.”

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Residents Learn How to
Cook Healthier in Pitt-Bradford Class

Students in the “Healthy Cooking” course sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford a prepared delicious yet nutritious meal.

The course was taught by Bradford Area High School’s family and consumer science teacher, Kimberly Preston. Class was in session from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on June 27 in the BAHS Home Economics Lab. These courses are part of a series of summer classes designed to promote healthy living.

Students Renae Lucks and Connie Upton prepared a healthier alternative to chicken alfredo. Their version of the recipe used chicken broth, flour and fat-free cream cheese instead of the traditional butter and milk. They also added less parmesan cheese and used whole wheat pasta. These simple changes slashed 310 calories and 30 grams of fat from each serving of the dish.

For a side, they made a salad of vitamin C-filled steamed broccoli and cherry tomatoes with a light vinaigrette perfect for hot summer days. To make the salad even healthier, they omitted the quarter teaspoon of salt called for in the recipe. They finished the meal with fat-free blueberry cheesecake trifle, made with sugar- and fat-free pudding, skim milk and fat-free Cool Whip.

The pair agreed that learning how to make recipes healthier was their favorite part of the course. Preston had them go to the Mayo Clinic’s website and look up the article “Recipe makeovers: 5 ways to create healthy recipes,” which can be found at Both women were excited to apply what they learned at home.

Lucks said that she enjoyed the “relaxing atmosphere” in the classroom, high praise from someone who confided that she doesn’t cook much because she can’t fit it into her busy schedule. Upton, Lucks’ friend and co-worker in the Warren school district, added that they both “try to be healthy” and were eager to take the course and learn some new cooking techniques.

They took the leftovers of the light meal home for supper and agreed that they’d take another cooking class in a heartbeat.

A second “Healthy Cooking” course will be offered from 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 6 and 7. The cost for the class, which includes all food items and materials, is $59. Class size is limited to eight students.

For more information or to register, contact the Division of Continuing Education and Regional Development at (814)362-5078 or

Pictured, Kimberly Preston, the family and consumer science teacher at Bradford Area High School, serves broccoli and tomato salad made by the students in her Healthy Cooking class. Students also prepared a healthy alternative to chicken alfredo and fat-free blueberry cheesecake trifle for dessert. The course, sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford’s Division of Continuing Education and Regional Development, will be held again from 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 6 and 7 in the BAHS Home Economics Lab.

Pitt-Bradford photo

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State Budget Earns House Approval

HARRISBURG – In the face of continued economic challenges, the state House adopted a $27.7 billion budget for the 2012-13 fiscal year that funds key services such as education and health care without increasing taxes, said Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint).

“After years of overspending, we are continuing the effort to right-size state government,” Causer said. “We are getting spending under control by prioritizing core government services and eliminating waste and fraud within the Department of Public Welfare. Most importantly, we are basing our budget decisions on reliable, sustainable revenue sources.”

Under the prior administration, state spending increased substantially due in large part to the short-term federal stimulus funding. When that money dried up last year, it left the Commonwealth facing a multi-billion dollar shortfall.

“That type of budgeting is irresponsible and unsustainable,” said Causer, who serves on the House Appropriations Committee. “We made it a priority last year and again this year to spend within our means. That led to some difficult decisions about where to invest those limited resources, but I believe the budget we adopted today is another step forward in our economic recovery.”

Education funding has been a top priority in budget negotiations from the start, Causer said. State System of Higher Education schools, as well as state-related institutions such as the University of Pittsburgh, saw their funding cut by nearly 20 percent in last year’s budget, and the governor proposed an additional 20 percent cut for state system schools and 30 percent for state-related schools this year.

Lawmakers insisted the schools receive the same level of funding as the current budget year. “A strong educational system is vital to our efforts to bring more jobs to our Commonwealth and boost our economy,” Causer said.

Funding for K-12 education was also a priority, as lawmakers worked to restore $100 million in Accountability Block Grants. The highly valued grant program provides flexible funds school districts often use for initiatives such as all-day kindergarten or pre-kindergarten.

Causer said he is pleased that critical access hospitals actually received an increase of $500,000 in this year’s budget after being cut last year. The hospitals are important to ensuring access to care in many areas of rural Pennsylvania.

County human services, which were level-funded in the prior year’s budget, were set to be cut by more than $160 million, or 20 percent, under the governor’s budget proposal. However, House and Senate lawmakers worked together to restore $84 million of the funding and also invested an additional $50 million in other areas of the budget to help people with intellectual disabilities.

The budget bill, Senate Bill 1466, is expected to be signed by the governor soon. For more information about the budget, visit

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Andrew Nicholson Draft Party

Andrew Nicholson will not be at the NBA Draft, but will have comprehensive coverage from both inside Nicholson's private Toronto gathering and the NBA Draft at the Prudential Center.

Beginning at 6:45 p.m., a special pre-show live from Nicholson's gathering with host Shannon Shepherd will air on UStream at Shepherd will interview Nicholson, in addition to other former teammates and coaches expected to be in attendance. The show will be archived and available to watch following the Draft.

Following Nicholson being selected, go to for complete reaction, including videos, a Twitter recap and the traditional release.
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DEP to Hold Public Meeting on July 11
about Daguscahonda Water System

The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public meeting on Wednesday, July 11, to discuss the Daguscahonda public water system in Ridgway Township, Elk County, and the steps necessary to comply with the Pennsylvania Safe Drinking Water Act and its regulations.

The informational meeting will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Ridgway Township building at 164 Ridgway Drive.

“This meeting will be an opportunity for residents to learn about and discuss the Safe Drinking Water Act and its role in ensuring drinking water safety,” DEP Northwest Regional Director Kelly Burch said. “It is a priority for DEP to ensure clean water for all citizens, and I encourage all of the residents who are served by this public water supply to attend.”

The U.S. Congress adopted the Safe Drinking Water Act in 1974 and directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to enforce the law, which established standards governing public water systems.

In 1985, the commonwealth took over administrative oversight of the Act within the state. The law defines a public water system as any system that provides at least 15 water service connections or serves at least 25 individuals. The Act protects the public from potential water-borne illness by mandating essential treatment standards and safe water-management practices.

New Backpacking Trail Opens in the
Allegheny National Forest

A blue-day sky with a light breeze drifting through the treetops deep within the Allegheny National Forest was the picture perfect setting for the trail dedication of the newly constructed Bullis Hollow Trail that took place at 10 a.m. today.

Forest Supervisor Erin Connelly opened the dedication by highlighting the important numbers associated with this trail-2.5, 8.3 and 305. Volunteers from the Tuna Valley Trail Association first approached the Allegheny National Forest (ANF) with an idea for a new trail that would connect the Tracy Ridge Trail System to the Marilla Trail System located just west of the City of Bradford -2.5 years ago. Working together through the summer season of 2011, Tuna Valley Trail volunteers and ANF personnel completed on the ground final trail layout along with archaeological and biological surveys. Environmental assessment work was completed by Allegheny National Forest personnel in the fall of 2011 and trail construction was just completed in May 2012.

The new trail is 8.3 miles in length. The Bullis Hollow Trail, a single-track, non-motorized trail crosses through the northeastern section of the Allegheny National Forest known as Chestnut Ridge. Trailheads are located just north of the Tracy Ridge Campground within the Allegheny National Forest along Rt. 321 and along Forest Service Road 173. With the opening of this trail, new hiking connections are made between the existing Tracy Ridge Trail System with 38-miles of interconnecting hiking trail loops through the congressionally designated Allegheny National Recreation Area and the North Country National Scenic Trail (NCNST).

The other number-305 is an important acknowledgment of the volunteer hours that where put into the actual construction and layout of the new trail. Construction was completed by a team of trail volunteers lead by experienced trail enthusiast Gene Cornelius, a member of the Tuna Valley Trail Association, who has years of experience and extensive knowledge of trail construction and maintenance. Help was provided by ANF personnel and Friends of the Allegheny Wilderness.

Following Connelly’s remarks, Linda Devlin, Director of the Allegheny National Forest Visitors Bureau the official tourist promotion agency for McKean County, and Vice-President of the Tuna Valley Trail Association, welcomed everyone to “Trail Central.” Trail Central is the marketing brand developed by McKean County tourism to promote low impact-high return tourism that follows the principals of geo-tourism. “The new Bullis Hollow Trail begins to build links between the existing Marilla Trail System, our communities and towns, visitor services and our natural assets such as the trail system within the Allegheny National Forest, the North Country Trail and the Allegany State Park” explained Devlin, “with this new trail hikers have an opportunity to experience a 2-3 day backpacking experience.”

Trail volunteer, Gene Cornelius, gave thanks to his group of volunteers, affectionately nicknamed “The Geritol Gang.” This group includes John Shineberger, George Sanflippo, and Rick Lutz who are also very active members of the TVTA. In addition to these volunteers, a core group of eight men and women constructed the trail without cutting one tree and with a minimum foot print on the land. Volunteers and trail enthusiasts that wish to know how they can become involved in this and other trail activities are invited to visit to learn more.

Others attending the dedication ceremony and ribbon cutting were Ed Prince of Allegheny Site Management who handles the campsite concessions for the forest, camp hosts from the Tracy Ridge Campground, forest service staff, members of the North Country Trail and a group of hikers who came out to participate in the guided hike that immediately followed the ribbon cutting.

The Tuna Valley Trail Association has signed a volunteer agreement to continue to maintain the trail they helped to plan, design and construct.

Downloadable trail maps of the Bullis Hollow Trail and other trails within the region are available at Camping reservations at Tracy Ridge can be made by calling 877-444-6777 or at

Pictured, Forest Supervisor Erin Connelly is joined by Linda Devlin and Gene Cornelius, Tuna Valley Trail volunteers to cut the ribbon at the trailhead of the new Bullis Hollow Trail.
Photo courtesy of the ANFVB

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Thompson Comments on SCOTUS Decision

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, who spent nearly three decades as a professional in a non-profit healthcare setting prior to being elected to Congress, today issued the following statement in response to the United States Supreme Court ruling on the constitutionality of certain provisions of President Obama’s 2010 health care reform law, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), namely the “individual mandate.”

“Regardless of the court’s ruling on the constitutionality of the President’s so-called Affordable Care Act, the law remains just as fundamentally flawed and unaffordable as the day it was signed into law,” said Thompson. “Unfortunately, this decision further empowers the Administration to move forward with contentious provisions that will limit patient choice, cut programs that benefit senior populations, and place an additional tax burden upon small businesses, state governments and the American taxpayer.”

Thompson voted to oppose the ACA when the bill passed the U.S. House on November 10, 2009. One of the few members of Congress who actually read the entire bill, Thompson expressed serious concerns about the policies contained there within. “I came to Washington to help address some of our health care problems and I believe that any changes should include better access, affordability, quality and patient choice. As I read through this bill, my conclusion was that the bill actually made each of those things worse rather than better,” Thompson stated following the vote.

In a March 30, 2012 Op-ed, Thompson outlined his opposition to the law, from “increased taxes, looming regulations and a slew of broken promises, from fictitious cost controls to limitations on consumer choice,” marking the two year anniversary of the ACA. “While the court's decision is yet to be made, the verdict has already been cast by the countless American families and small businesses that simply cannot afford the Affordable Care Act,” Thompson added.

Since passage of the ACA, Thompson has worked to advance health care reforms that reduce cost and expand access, without sacrificing quality and innovation. Thompson has voiced his support for certain provisions under the ACA, including the elimination of excluding those with pre-existing conditions from insurance plans, allowing adult dependents up to 26 years of age to remain on their parent’s insurance plans, and the expansion of low-cost clinics into underserved areas, which he believes all should be included in future legislative efforts to repeal and replace the law.

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PennDOT, Police to Partner for
Independence Day DUI Enforcement

Harrisburg – State and local police, along with PennDOT, will take part in a national enforcement effort through July 8 targeting motorists who drive under the influence. The “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” enforcement effort will focus on keeping Pennsylvania’s roads safe during the Independence Day travel period.

“Many people will celebrate and travel for the Independence Day holiday,” PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch said. “Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs puts your life and the lives of those around you in danger. Designate a driver ahead of time or arrange for a ride home – just don’t drive unless you’re sober.”

Over last year’s Independence Day holiday travel period (July 1-4), there were 897 crashes and 14 fatalities. Of those, according to PennDOT, 146 crashes and six fatalities were alcohol-related.

During 2011 there were 11,778 alcohol-related crashes in Pennsylvania, according to PennDOT data, in which 425 people were killed. In 2010, there were 11,682 alcohol-related crashes, according to PennDOT, in which 444 people were killed.

“Motorists must understand that alcohol and driving never mix,” said State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan. “Don't get behind the wheel of a vehicle if you've been drinking, even if you plan to only drive a short distance. Enjoy the holiday, but make safety a priority.”

The legal blood-alcohol content in Pennsylvania is 0.08 for motorists over the age of 21. For underage drivers, the blood-alcohol limit is 0.02 percent. DUI penalties can include jail time, license suspension and fines of between $500 and $5,000.

Pennsylvania’s DUI Task Forces, the Pennsylvania State Police and local law enforcement statewide will conduct checkpoints and roving patrols as part of the crackdown. Funding comes from part of PennDOT’s statewide distribution of $4.2 million in federal funds from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Visit for more information on impaired driving and PennDOT’s other important traffic-safety initiatives.

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Cuomo Comments on SCOTUS Ruling

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo released the following statement on the Supreme Court's ruling on the health care law:

Albany, NY -- "Thanks to the leadership of President Obama and his administration, particularly Secretary Sebelius, the Affordable Care Act will provide access to health care to millions of Americans nationwide and more than one million New Yorkers, and I am pleased the Supreme Court upheld this law.

We will continue to move forward with implementing the health exchange that will lower coverage costs for New York's businesses and help ensure that uninsured New Yorkers have access to health care. We look forward to continuing to work together with the Obama administration to ensure accessible, quality care for all New Yorkers."

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Corbett Comments on SCOTUS Ruling

Harrisburg – Governor Tom Corbett today said he was disappointed in the U.S.Supreme Court ruling upholding the federal healthcare law, known as Obamacare, but said he will work hard to limit the law’s negative impact on Pennsylvanians.

Corbett, when he was attorney general, joined a dozen other states in challenging the federal healthcare reform law. When he became governor, Corbett continued that court challenge, along with 26 other states.

“It appears that the Supreme Court agreed with the lawsuit brought by myself and 12 other Attorneys General finding Obamacare unconstitutional under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, however they did uphold the law under Congress’ taxing authority,’’ Corbett said.

“Despite the President’s repeated assertions that this was not a tax, the Supreme Court today ruled that it is in fact a tax,’’ Corbett said. “Not only is it a tax, but it may turn out to be one of the largest tax increases in the history of our nation. It is a tax on our citizens that they cannot afford. It is a tax that hits our small businesses the hardest and will kill job growth.

“This law will raise healthcare costs for our families, our employers and our state,’’ Corbett said. “This is a burden to all of us who work every day to recover from the recession."

“While I am disappointed with this ruling, respect for the law and for the process of the law -- even when we disagree -- is part of our democracy. My administration will do all we can to ensure the negative impact of this law affects the lives of Pennsylvanians as little as possible,’’ Corbett said.

The law requires individuals who are not covered by an employer or government insurance plan to maintain minimal health insurance coverage. It also increases national medical spending and expands Medicaid to unsustainable levels.

“I think we can all agree there are Pennsylvanians who need our help. However, expanding government bureaucracy, government programs and government spending is not the answer. As governor I will work to ensure Pennsylvanians have access to affordable and quality healthcare,’’ Corbett said.

“That is why now more than ever we need change in Washington,’’ Corbett said. “We need to elect lawmakers who will put the needs of our families first, leaders that respect our freedoms, respect free enterprise and respect competition.’’

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Update for Route 255 Roadwork

ST. MARYS – Work to improve Route 255 in Fox Township and St Marys is underway. The work zone stretches from the Route 948 intersection in Fox Township to the intersection for Tractor Supply. Once the project completes in late summer 2013, travel along this section of Route 255 will be smoother and more efficient. PennDOT will issue regular updates on this project.

Activity the week of July 2 will include work from approximately Greenbriar Drive (T-593) to the intersection at Tractor Supply.

• Changing traffic patterns: The contractor will continue patching the existing concrete pavement at various locations. One lane northbound and one lane southbound will be closed to perform the work. One lane in each direction will remain open to traffic at all times.

• The contractor will place a bituminous leveling course over the existing concrete pavement.

• The contractor will be removing existing guide rail and begin benching existing slopes and placing rock armor.

• Crews will be working on Wednesday, July 4.

• Motorists are advised to watch for slow moving and stopped vehicles through the entire work zone. Traffic congestion may be heavy at times and motorists need to use caution and remain patient.

Overall work includes concrete repair, paving, installation of overhead signage, drainage improvements, concrete curbing, guide rail updates, and pavement markings.

This project is expected to overlap with PennDOT’s other Route 255 project that will begin in 2013. That project will stretch from the Tractor Supply intersection to Route 120 in downtown St Marys. All work is weather and schedule dependent. New Enterprise Stone & Lime Company, Inc. is the contractor on this $6.3 million project.

Follow PennDOT on Twitter at

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Blood Bank Expects Bad Week

The Community Blood Bank is expecting next week to be one of the worst weeks of the year for the local blood supply.

The July 4 holiday falling on a Wednesday means instead of dealing with just a long weekend, there is a 9-day period of heavy use combined with much lighter donor turnout.

People can help stock the blood bank before the holiday week by donating today in the BRMC outpatient lab in Union Square. The blood bank is open from 3:30 to 7:30 today, and again on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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Speed Display Sign Near Ormsby

Ormsby – Motorists traveling along Route 59 in Keating Township, McKean County, near the village of Ormsby will be reminded of one of the most common types of aggressive driving behavior: speeding.

PennDOT recently placed a radar-controlled speed display sign in a 55-mile-per-hour zone along westbound Route 59 at the request of Keating Township. The speed display sign uses radar to determine the speeds of oncoming traffic. Vehicle speeds are then posted on the lighted section of the sign.

The speed display sign will remain on location for up to four weeks.

Speeding and other aggressive driving behaviors are among the leading causes of crashes and fatalities in Pennsylvania. Other aggressive driving behaviors include running stop signs or red lights, passing illegally and tailgating.

Learn more about aggressive driving at PennDOT’s highway safety website,

Follow PennDOT on Twitter at

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Northwest Celebrates 3rd JD Power Award

A group of more than 700 employees of Northwest Savings Bank cheered at the unveiling of the 2012 JD Power and Associates Trophy for Highest Customer Satisfaction with Retail Banking in the Mid-Atlantic Region at a company celebration and picnic in the streets of the bank’s headquarters town of Warren, Pennsylvania today. This is the third consecutive year that Northwest Savings Bank has received the award.

The trophy joined its predecessors from 2010 and 2011 on display in front of a specially-built stage at the south end of Liberty Street. The street, which was closed to traffic for the event and crowded with Northwest personnel, runs between the bank’s Administrative and Corporate Centers through the heart of the small city 140 miles north of Pittsburgh. Banners bearing images of the awards from 2012, 2011 and 2010, plus the images of awards presented to Northwest by Forbes for being one of America’s 100 Most Trustworthy Companies for 2012 and 2009, hung from the enclosed walkway that spans the street above the stage and joins the bank’s two buildings. A mammoth jumbotron behind the stage allowed everyone in the crowd to view speakers onstage and videos presented as part of the program.

The crowd wore polo shirts, given to all employees of the $8 billion bank in commemoration of the honor, and waved giant, green foam hands with three fingers symbolizing the three trophies. They filled the street to see the unveiling and to hear remarks by members of the bank’s senior management team and a representative of JD Power and Associates.

Steven Fisher, Executive Vice President of Banking Services of Northwest Savings Bank, addressed the crowd. He recognized that those gathered represented all departments of Northwest Savings Bank, including representatives from the bank’s network of 168 community banking offices, its region, district and area management team, commercial lenders, wealth management representatives and business service advisors from the four states the banks serves, members of the 52 offices of the Northwest Consumer Discount Company, Boetger and Associates, Veracity Benefit Designs, and Members of the Board of Directors. It was the largest single gathering of Northwest Savings Bank employees in the company’s 116 year history.

Addressing the crowd, Mr. Fisher said, “Life is about making decisions today to build a better future. Northwest is committed to the long-term success of our employees, customers, communities, and shareholders. Our engaged, empowered teams of local professionals make the difference in ensuring that tomorrow will be the best it can be. Please leverage this excellence we have all earned. Thank our existing customers and tell everyone who is not a customer how special Northwest really is.”

J.D. Power and Associates Account Director, US Services and Emerging Industries Division, Financial Services Group, Lisa Coleno briefly addressed the crowd. “Your company doesn’t take customer service for granted,” she told the crowd. “Northwest empowers its employees to serve its customers well. Consequently, Northwest Savings Bank sets the bar for exceptional customer service on a national level.” She urged the bank employees to strive for a fourth award next year.
Northwest Savings Bank President and CEO, William J. Wagner then thanked the employees for their commitment to customer service and Northwest’s customers for their support.

Wagner said, “Receiving this award three consecutive years is a tribute to Northwest’s culture of providing exceptional service to our customers. These awards come at a time when critics across our nation unjustifiably place the blame for recent economic troubles on our industry, an industry with a longstanding tradition of dedicated service to its customers and communities. All the members of our Northwest team are proud to say that we are community bankers, because community bankers are one of the pillars of the economic well-being of our nation.”

The local bank received the award because it ranked highest in customer satisfaction in retail banking in the Mid-Atlantic Region according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 Retail Banking Customer Satisfaction Study. (SM)

The study, conducted in January and February, analyzed overall customer satisfaction with their retail banking experience based on six factors: account activities, account information, facility, fees, problem resolution, and product offering. Northwest received the highest customer satisfaction score in the Mid-Atlantic Region, which includes Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C.

J.D. Power and Associates of Westlake, California has completed these studies and released these rankings for six years. The rankings reflect the results of surveys conducted with nearly 52,000 banking customers nationally. Additional information about the study and its methodology may be found at

Photo of confetti falling down on the the three trophies is courtesy of Northwest Savings.

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SBU's Martin to Compete at Olympic Trials

OMAHA, NEB – St. Bonaventure men’s swimmer, sophomore James Martin will compete today in the 100m Freestyle event at the United States Olympic Swimming Trials. The NBC Sports Network will have full coverage of the semifinals at 4:30 p.m. ET followed by coverage of the finals on NBC at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Martin qualified for the Olympic trials at Flickinger Aquatic Center in Buffalo, N.Y. during an event hosted by the USA Swimming Speedo Champions Series in late March. Martin qualified in the 100-meter freestyle when he touched in at 51.39, coming in .10 below the standard time of 51.49.

At the A-10 Championships, Martin sprinted to a gold medal time of 44.82 in the same event.

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