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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Man Jailed for Hitting 4-Year-Old

A Roulette man is in jail after allegedly hitting and injuring a 4-year-old.

43-year-old Michael Roberts was arrested on Friday and charged with simple assault, endangering the welfare of a child and harassment.

Police say Potter County Children and Youth Services contacted them saying the child had visible injuries to his leg and buttocks.

The investigation is continuing.

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

... Chats with Anne Holliday

Two of Bravo's "Million Dollar Decorators" chat with Anne Holliday about how to put the "festive" in your holiday festivities.
Festive Decorating by wesbnews1

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

68-Year-Old Man Charged with Robbery

A Cattaraugus County man is accused of robbing another man at gunpoint Thursday afternoon.

Sheriff’s deputies say 68-year-old Dennis Ziegler of Leon displayed a weapon and stole $20 from a Gowanda man while they were on Mosher Hollow Road in the Town of Leon.

Zieger is jailed on $7,000 bail. Deputies say they will not be releasing information about the victim.

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

Man Sentenced for Raping Relatives

A Salamanca truck driver who transported his young relatives over state lines to sexually abuse them has been sentenced to 40 years in federal prison and, after that, the rest of his life on probation.

48-year-old Kevin Donaldson took three of his relatives across state lines and repeatedly raped them between April of 2004 and July of 2007. One of the victims was 13 years old when the sexual abuse started.

Prior to the two-week trial that ended in this conviction, Donaldson was convicted of rape charges in Cattaraugus County and sentenced to four years in state prison.

Donaldson was also convicted of witness tampering in this case for writing letters to one of the victims, and the child’s mother, in an attempt to influence the child’s testimony.

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

Cost of Classic Thanksgiving Dinner
Up Slightly This Year

The retail cost of menu items for a classic Thanksgiving dinner including turkey, stuffing, cranberries, pumpkin pie and all the basic trimmings increased less than 1 percent this year, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

AFBF’s 27th annual informal price survey of classic items found on the Thanksgiving Day dinner table indicates the average cost of this year’s feast for 10 is $49.48, a 28-cent price increase from last year’s average of $49.20.

“At just under $5 per person, the cost of this year’s meal remains a bargain,” said AFBF President Bob Stallman, a rice and cattle producer from Texas. “Our diverse farm and ranch families are honored to produce the food from our nation’s land for family Thanksgiving celebrations. During this holiday season, I am encouraging farmers and ranchers to reach out to consumers in-person or through social media, to answer questions about the food that they grow or the livestock and poultry they raise.”

The AFBF survey shopping list includes turkey, bread stuffing, sweet potatoes, rolls with butter, peas, cranberries, a relish tray of carrots and celery, pumpkin pie with whipped cream, and beverages of coffee and milk, all in quantities sufficient to serve a family of 10. There is also plenty for leftovers.

The big ticket item – a 16-pound turkey – came in at $22.23 this year. That was roughly $1.39 per pound, an increase of about 4 cents per pound, or a total of 66 cents per whole turkey, compared to 2011. The whole bird was the biggest contributor to the final total, showing the largest price increase compared to last year.

“Thanksgiving Dinner is a special meal that people look forward to all year,” said John Anderson, AFBF’s deputy chief economist. “Most Americans will pay about the same as last year at the grocery store for a turkey and all the trimmings. A slight increase in demand for turkey is responsible for the moderate price increase our shoppers reported for the bird,” he said.

Savvy shoppers may pay even less for frozen tom turkey compared to AFBF’s 155 volunteer shoppers who checked prices at grocery stores in 35 states.

“Turkeys may still be featured in special sales and promotions close to Thanksgiving,” Anderson explained. “Anyone with the patience to wait until the last minute to buy a turkey for Thanksgiving could be rewarded with an exceptional bargain,” he said.

In addition to the turkey, a combined group of miscellaneous items, including coffee and ingredients necessary to prepare the meal (onions, eggs, sugar, flour, evaporated milk and butter) increased in price, to $3.18. A dozen brown-n-serve rolls also increased slightly this year, up 3 cents to $2.33.

Items that showed a price decrease from last year were: a half pint of whipping cream, $1.83, down 13 cents; a 14-ounce package of cubed bread stuffing, $2.77, down 11 cents; three pounds of sweet potatoes, $3.15, down 11 cents; one gallon of whole milk, $3.59, down 7 cents; fresh cranberries, $2.45, down 3 cents; one pound of green peas, $1.66, down 2 cents; a 30-ounce can of pumpkin pie mix and two nine-inch pie shells, $5.53, down 2 cents.

A one-pound relish tray of carrots and celery remained the same at 76 cents. Anderson noted that despite retail price increases during the last year or so, American consumers have enjoyed relatively stable food costs over the years, particularly when adjusted for inflation.

The slight percentage increase in the national average cost reported this year by Farm Bureau for a classic Thanksgiving dinner tracks closely with the organization’s 2012 quarterly marketbasket surveys and the government’s Consumer Price Index for food (available online at http://data.bls.gov/).

Farm Bureau volunteer shoppers are asked to look for the best possible prices, without taking advantage of special promotional coupons or purchase deals, such as spending $50 and receiving a free turkey. Shoppers with an eye for bargains in all areas of the country should be able to purchase individual menu items at prices comparable to the Farm Bureau survey averages. Another option for busy families without a lot of time to cook is ready-to-eat Thanksgiving meals for up to 10 people, with all the trimmings, which are available at many supermarkets and take-out restaurants for around $50 to $75.

The AFBF survey was first conducted in 1986. While Farm Bureau does not make any scientific claims about the data, it is an informal gauge of price trends around the nation. Farm Bureau’s survey menu has remained unchanged since 1986 to allow for consistent price comparisons.

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

Cruisin' into Christmas

These two young guys anxiously await the arrival of Santa Claus during Friday's 4th annual Cruisin' into Christmas parade on Main Street, as Santa's Helper Richard Obermyer hands out candy. Even before Santa's arrival, one of the boys turned to his grandfather and said, "Thanks for bringing me. This is great!"
The parade is held a week before the traditional start of the holiday shopping season to bring people downtown to see what local merchants have to offer.
This man got the best seat in the house -- Santa's chair -- at the Main Street Mercantile during the parade. And how did he manage to get the job of keeping the Jolly Old Elf's seat warm until he got to the Mercantile. Easy. He's the father of Mercantile owner Todd Hennard. (And that's Todd's Mom, too.) Santa's Mailbox is also at the Mercantile so kids can drop their letters off for Santa to read on 1490 WESB.
The news leader of the Twin Tiers ... since 1947

Friday, November 16, 2012

YMCA Gives Thanks

The Olean-Bradford Area YMCA held its Community Appreciation Luncheon today at the Premier Banquet Center. Keynote speakers were Greg Booth, president and CEO of Zippo Manufacturing Co. and W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery, and Sister Margaret Carney, president of St. Bonaventure University. Pictured, from left, are Anita Schmidt, Olean Branch Board Member, Sister Margaret, Booth, and Bill Leven, Olean-Bradford Area YMCA Board Chair.
YMCA photo

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

Student Nurses Collecting Warm Clothes

The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford’s Student Nurse Organization is working with CNB Bank to collect coats and other warm items for those who need them.

The Warm Coats and Warm Hearts drive is collecting coats, mittens, gloves, scarves, blankets and other items to help children and adults stay warm through Dec. 7.

New or slightly worn items can be dropped off at any CNB Bank location or from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday in the nursing suite on the second floor of Swarts Hall at Pitt-Bradford. All items donated will be distributed free to those in need.

Image from SweetClipArt.com.

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

House Passes Bill Authorizing
Permanent Normal Trade Relations with Russia

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Glenn 'GT' Thompson today voted to support H.R. 6156, the “Russia and Moldova Jackson-Vanik Repeal Act of 2012,” legislation authorizing the President to grant both countries permanent normal trade relations (PNTR). H.R. 6156 passed the U.S. House with bipartisan support by a vote of 365-43.

"We must promote every opportunity for economic expansion and job growth, including finding new market opportunities for American businesses and U.S. products,” said Rep. Thompson. “Passage of H.R. 6156 will ensure that the U.S. benefits from Russia’s accession to the World Trade Organization, which offers significant trade opportunities for American companies.”

Russia joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) on August 22, 2012, and Moldova — a former Soviet republic — gained accession in 2001. As a result, both countries are required to open up their markets and comply with the WTO’s rules.

The United States cannot receive any of these benefits until Congress grants PNTR. Without granting normal trade relations, all WTO benefits for the United States will go to foreign competitors.

“If trade relations with Russia are not normalized, American companies will continue to be disadvantaged in Russian markets,” Rep. Thompson added. “This authorization will ensure that U.S. workers and businesses, including our farming community, have an even playing field when competing for business in both countries.”

H.R. 6156 also contains provisions to address concerns about Russia’s compliance with its WTO obligations and address bilateral trade issues between the United States and Russia, particularly those dealing with food safety, intellectual property and human rights.

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

Toomey Disappointed in EPA Decision

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) issued the following statement today about the Environmental Protection Agency’s rejection of a waiver request from states seeking relief from the renewable fuel standard’s ethanol mandate:

"Ethanol mandates disproportionately hurt states like Pennsylvania. From our dairy and chicken farms to our refineries, this ill-advised policy hurts all Americans every day, costing consumers more at the grocery store and damaging our economy. I’m disappointed that the EPA chose to disregard the impact this growing mandate will have on Americans’ food costs by denying the waiver request I supported. It’s time for Congress to put an end to ethanol mandates, and I look forward to working on this during the 113th Congress,” Sen. Toomey said.

In an August letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, Sen. Toomey and six other senators asked that the EPA not increase the renewable fuel standard in 2013 and keep it at the 2012 level, in response to the summer’s widespread drought. Since 2008, the renewable fuel standard has mandated the use of corn-based ethanol in the United States. These standards require the use of 13.2 billion gallons of that ethanol in 2012 and 13.8 billion gallons in 2013.

This renewable fuel standard is diverting more and more corn from our food supply to be used for fuel. In 2007, 25 percent of domestically-produced corn was used for ethanol, compared to 40 percent in the most recent crop year. Meanwhile, corn prices have risen steadily for the past decade, from $2 a bushel in 2005 to $8.24 in June.

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

Overwhelming Response for Blanket Giveaway

Destinations-Bradford is holding a blanket giveaway, Saturday, November 17th between 10 am and 2 pm at the Community Outreach Center at 1 Main Street.

Due to the overwhelming response from community members, additional blankets are now available to walk-in guests. Both twin and full/queen sized blankets are available while supplies last.

The program is sponsored by the Bradford Area Ministerium and the Pitt-Bradford student body.

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

PGC Releases Bobcat Back into Wild

DALLAS, Luzerne County – A cat may not have nine lives, but a young bobcat in the Poconos received a second one recently, according to Pennsylvania Game Commission officials.

A female bobcat kitten was discovered in a wooded area of Luzerne County this past spring by a couple hiking in the woods. The seven-week old cat was found weak and unable to walk, and without any adult female seen in the vicinity. The situation remained unchanged the following day, and arrangements were made to deliver the bobcat the Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center near Saylorsburg, Monroe County for medical care and rehabilitation. The Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center is licensed for wildlife care through permitting by the Game Commission, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Game Commission Northeast Region Biologist Kevin Wenner speculates that the female parent may have met an untimely demise.

“Bobcats are sometimes hit on the roadway, or die from disease or a variety of other causes,” Wenner explained. “It would be rare to have a female cat abandon her young.”

When the bobcat arrived at the rehabilitation center it weighed about 1.5 pounds and was in poor physical condition, according to Kathy Uhler, Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center director.

“It was provided an initial diet of specialized formula, and then weaned to a diet of small mammals and birds including rabbits, pigeons, rats and mice,” Uhler said. “Animals were fed to the cat alive when possible. While this may sound distasteful to some, it is necessary in order to stimulate natural hunting behavior.

“The cat was housed in a secure enclosure with double doors to prevent escape and human contact was kept to an absolute minimum in an effort to discourage imprinting.”

When it was time for the release, Wenner approached the enclosure quietly and cautiously, as a group of students from East Stroudsburg University and reporters from the local media looked on.

“The cat seemed to sense something was amiss and it let out a low, guttural growl,” Wenner said. “The cat was positioned high on a rafter as Eric Uhler, who is largely responsible for the daily care of the animal, and I entered the innermost door. We were greeted with menacing bared teeth and hissing, as the young cat swiped at the air from above.

“The tranquilizer dart, containing a mixture of animal immobilization drug, found its mark in the cat’s shoulder, and soon made handling the animal possible. The bobcat was taken outside and a scale showed its weight at a healthy 14 pounds.”

East Stroudsburg University students obtained hair samples to determine its genetic profile, as part of an ongoing study, and then the bobcat was transported in a pet carrier to a remote section of State Game Land 186 in Monroe County.

“The habitat there makes it an ideal release site,” said Wenner. “It provides plenty of food and cover to meet the animal’s needs. The hunting and other survival behaviors of bobcats are largely instinctive, and this cat has a good chance to make it.”

The pet carrier door was opened carefully and the young cat got a first glimpse of her new surroundings. It was an environment free of human sounds and manmade materials. The cat, still groggy from the day’s ordeal, slowly regained the use of her legs and made some initial tentative steps. A few moments later, the cat had some distance between her and a few observers, and then slowly dissolved into the woods.

“Not all wildlife found in similar situations are candidates for rehabilitation and young animals left vulnerable to predation, the elements, and starvation don’t often make it, which is a hard fact of nature,” Wenner said. “Returning this apex predator to the wild was a unique and successful operation made possible by efforts of the Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, the Game Commission, and a host of wildlife volunteers.”

The handling of sick or injured wildlife is unlawful and poses serious health and safety concerns. If someone encounters sick or injured wildlife, he or she should contact the appropriate Game Commission Region Office.

Bobcats are Pennsylvania’s only feline predator and inhabit wooded areas where they feed on a variety of small animals including mice, chipmunks, squirrels, birds, and rabbits. They are highly secretive in nature and mostly nocturnal.

“Bobcats are fascinating animals and they are an important component of Pennsylvania’s diverse wildlife community,” Wenner said. “They keep prey species populations in balance and also provide sportsmen with valuable hunting and trapping opportunities.”

Bobcats in Pennsylvania have gray-brown fur with dark spots and bars, which are especially noticeable on the legs. A ruff of fur extends out and downward from the ears.

Bobcats are efficient predators, and equipped with sharp senses of sight, smell and hearing. They have four large canine teeth to pierce deeply into prey; behind the canines are sharp cutting teeth. Five retractable, hooked claws on each front foot and four on the rear, add to the cat’s arsenal.

Although a bobcat is a fierce fighter, it isn’t a large animal. A mature bobcat averages 36 inches in length, which includes a stubby tail. This “bobbed” tail gives the cat its name. Adult bobcats weigh between 15 and 20 pounds; with large individuals weighing as much as 35 pounds. Some may live up to 15 years of age in the wild, and much longer in captivity. Because of their secretive nature, bobcats rarely interact with domestic pets or livestock.

Bobcat kittens are born in early spring, with litter sizes ranging from one to four. Adult female bobcats guard their young carefully as an adult male bobcat may try to kill and eat the young. This behavior makes the discovery of the kitten from Luzerne County highly unusual.

In 2000, the Game Commission created a limited bobcat season. The 2012-13 bobcat trapping season runs from Dec. 15-Jan. 6, and is open in Wildlife Management Units 2A, 2C, 2E, 2F, 2G, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4C, 4D and 4E. The bobcat hunting season, which is open in the same WMUs, runs from Jan. 15 to Feb. 5. Hunters and trappers must possess a furtaker license and a bobcat permit, and the season limit is one bobcat.

Pictured, a female bobcat in enclosure prior to being immobilized for release on State Game Land 186 in Monroe County; Eric Uhler, of Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, and Kevin Wenner, Game Commission Northeast Region biologist, prepare to weigh bobcat before its release into the wild.
Game Commission photos

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

Cleland Grants Extension for Sandusky

Judge John Cleland today granted a request from Jerry Sandusky’s lawyers for an extension to file briefs in support of an effort to have his convictions on child sex abuse charges overturned, or be granted a new trial.

Defense lawyers now have until December 14 to file their briefs. A hearing on the matter has been scheduled for January 10 in Bellefonte.

Sandusky, who is serving a 30- to 60-year prison sentence, which is says is excessive, says hearsay evidence was improperly allowed during his trial and there wasn’t enough other evidence for convictions.

His lawyer asked for the extension because lead appeals attorney Norris Gelman recently had a heart attack and open-heart surgery, and could not start work on the case until mid-October.

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

Foster Township Residents Dicuss
Sewer Plan, Regional Sanitary Authority

You can listen to the entire meeting here:
Foster Township Sewer Meeting by wesbnews

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

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Clarion University Hosts Railway Forum

Two hundred members of the rail and manufacturing industries convened Oct. 24 in Gemmell Student Center at Clarion University of Pennsylvania for the “Next Generation Rail Supply Chain Connectivity” forum. Attendees included representatives from ElectroMotive, GE Transportation, Nippon Sharyo, Siemens, local manufacturer Brookville Equipment and others.

Hosted by Northwest Industrial Resource Center and Northwest & North Central Partners for Regional Economic Performance, the forum fostered discussion between large car builders and smaller U.S. manufacturers, working toward the goal of reaching 100 percent domestic content in railcars.

The all-day event included networking activities, professional panels and speeches. Among those addressing the audience were Kevin Kesler, chief of the Department of Transportation’s Rolling Stock division; Linda Martin, senior attorney at the Department’s Federal Railroad Administration; and Congressman Glenn Thompson. Clarion University President Karen M. Whitney welcomed the group.

“The Manufacturing Extension Partnership and Northwest Industrial Resource Center did a wonderful job of bringing this national, high-profile event to our region,” said Dr. Kevin Roth, director of the Clarion University Small Business Development Center. “This was a tremendous opportunity for manufacturers from the region to receive specific information regarding the Next Generation Rail Supply Chain. Most importantly, this event helped to directly connect rail OEMS with manufacturers interested in becoming suppliers to support intermodal transportation in the U.S.”

Clarion joined a select list of cities/communities that were chosen as forum sites. The list also includes Sacramento, Kansas City, Orlando and Chicago.

Clarion University is the high-achieving, nationally recognized, comprehensive university that delivers a personal and challenging academic experience.

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

State Police Looking for Information in
1968 Unsolved Homicide of US Marine

Harrisburg – The Pennsylvania State Police is looking for information on an unsolved case, which involved the murder of United States Marine Corps Cpl. Robert Daniel Corriveau. He was discovered deceased along the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Chester County, Pennsylvania about 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia.

On November 18, 1968, a Pennsylvania State Trooper, while on routine turnpike patrol, spotted a man in a seated position alongside the highway about a mile east of the Downingtown interchange. The trooper stopped to check on the man and found that he was deceased. An autopsy determined that the victim had been stabbed once through the heart. He carried no identification and was considered a John Doe. He remained unidentified for 44 years.

On July 29, 2009, in an effort to further the investigation, members of the Pennsylvania State Police Criminal Investigation Assessment /Missing Persons Unit with assistance from the Chester County District Attorney’s Office and Chester County Coroner’s Office, exhumed John Doe’s body. Bone samples were sent to the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification where a DNA profile was obtained and entered into a national missing persons DNA database.

Suspecting the victim might have been in the military because of his physical description at the time and two tattoos; one being a bird in flight with a heart in the background, and the other being a bulldog wearing a World War I helmet with letters “USMC” printed below it, a request for assistance was sent to the U.S. Naval Criminal Investigative Service Cold Case Unit and the U.S. Marine Corps Absentee Collection Unit.

On May 31, 2012, John Doe was positively identified by DNA as Cpl. Robert Daniel Corriveau, United States Marine Corps. Cpl. Corriveau, just shy of his 21st birthday, was an active duty Marine who had been wounded in action on three separate occasions in Vietnam in 1967. At the time of his disappearance, Cpl. Corriveau was a patient at the Philadelphia Naval Hospital where he was receiving psychiatric treatment for a combat related condition. Cpl. Corriveau was discovered missing by hospital personnel at approximately 7:50 a.m. on November 18, 1968, the same day he was found deceased.

Cpl. Corriveau, originally from Lawrence, Massachusetts, was 20 years old at the time of his death. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in March 1965. He served several tours in Vietnam, was injured in the line of duty and was awarded two purple hearts. He previously received psychiatric treatment for a combat related condition at the Chelsea Naval Hospital in Chelsea, Massachusetts.

The Pennsylvania State Police is asking for the public’s assistance in recalling any details that could help to solve this case. This would include members of the United States Marine Corps or Navy who may have served with Cpl. Corriveau and Naval personnel or patients who were present at the Philadelphia Naval Hospital in October and November 1968.

People with information are asked to contact the Pennsylvania State Police at 610-268-5158 or email RA-1968MarineDeath@pa.gov.

If you have information about this case or any serious crime or wanted person, call Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers toll free at 1-800-4PA-TIPS or visit their website at www.PACrimeStoppers.org. Tips made to Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers may be eligible for a cash reward.

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

PGC Releases Elk Hunt Results

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Game Commission officials today announced that 52 elk were harvested by the 65 hunters awarded elk licenses for the recently concluded 2012 elk hunt, which was held Nov. 5-10. Of that total, 19 were antlered and 33 were antlerless.

The heaviest antlered elk was taken by Richard Tratthen, Jr., of Scott Township, Lackawanna County. He took a 840-pound (estimated live weight), 8x8 on Nov. 7, in Jay Township, Elk County.

Other large antlered elk (all estimated live weights) were: Robin Carleton of Mansfield, Tioga County, took a 775-pound 7x7 on Nov. 7 in Covington Township, Clearfield County; Roger Rummel of Nanty Glo, Cambria County, took a 758-pound, 7x7 on Nov. 8, in Covington Township, Clearfield County; Charles Ulrich of Allenwood, Union County, took a 729-pound 7x7 on Nov. 5 in Karthus Township, Clearfield County; and Charles Cahill, Jr., of Upper Darby, Delaware County, took a 720-pound 6x6 on Nov. 7 in Covington Township, Clearfield County.

The heaviest antlerless elk was taken by Sylvester Kronenwetter of Saint Marys, Elk County. He took an antlerless elk that weighed 616 pounds on Nov. 9 in Huston Township in Clearfield County.

Those hunters rounding out the top five heaviest antlerless elk harvested were: Barry Rhoad of Fredericksburg, Lebanon County, 551-pound elk in Gibson Township, Cameron County, on Nov. 7; Terry McLaughlin of Greensburg, Westmoreland County, 549-pound elk on Nov 9, in Benezette Township, Elk County; Ed Roupe of East Fairfield, Vermont, 538-pound elk in West Keating Township, Clinton County, on Nov. 7; and Frank Webster of Greencastle, Franklin County, 520-pound elk in Benezette Township, Elk County on Nov. 7.

“Since 2001, when the first modern-day elk season was instituted, 523 elk have been harvested,” said Carl G. Roe, Game Commission executive director. “In 2013, the Game Commission will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the elk restoration project. Watch future issues of Game News and the agency website for more highlights on this major conservation milestone.”

As has been the case every year, agency biologists extracted samples needed for chronic wasting disease (CWD) testing, and results are expected early next year.

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

Pitt-Bradford Faculty Members Recognized

The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford recognized seven faculty members for service anniversaries at a dinner Monday evening.

Dr. J. Michael Stuckart, associate professor of anthropology, was recognized for 35 years of service.

After growing up on Long Island and starting his career in a two-room school house in Lancaster, Stuckart joined Pitt-Bradford’s faculty in 1977. He is the director of the human relations program and teaches courses in Latin America today, religion and culture, and North American Indian art. He is active with the University of Pittsburgh’s internationally renowned Center for Latin American Studies.

Andrea Robbins, instructor of chemistry, was honored for 30 years. She was the 2008 recipient of the Chairs’ Faculty Teaching Award for excellence in teaching. She lives in Rixford with her husband, Don.

Dr. Jon A. Draeger, associate professor of chemistry, was honored for 25 years of service. Before coming to Pitt-Bradford in 1987, he worked for the Department of Energy.

Those recognized for 10 years of service were Dr. Marius Buliga, associate professor of mathematics, and Dr. Gregory L. Page, associate professor of psychology.

Dr. David K. Merwine, assistant professor of biology, and Dr. Fang-Yi Flora Wei, assistant professor of broadcast communications, were recognized for five years of service each.

Pictured, from left, are Dr. Gregory L. Page, associate professor of psychology, 10 years; Dr. J. Michael Stuckart, associate professor of anthropology, 35 years; Andrea M. Robbins, instructor of chemistry, 30 years; Dr. Marius G. Buliga, associate professor of mathematics, 10 years; Dr. David K. Merwine, assistant professor of biology, five years; Dr. Fang-Yi Flora Wei, assistant professor of broadcast communications, five years.
Pitt-Bradford photo

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

... Chats with Anne Holliday

March of Dimes Foundation president Dr. Jennifer L. Howse chats with Anne Holliday about World Prematurity Day and the 2012 Premature Birth Report Card.
March of Dimes by wesbnews
The news leader of the Twin Tiers ... since 1947

State Senate Dems Elect Leaders

Harrisburg – Members of the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Caucus today elected leaders for the upcoming 2013-14 legislative session, with Sen. Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) reelected for a second term as Democratic Leader.

Wednesday's leadership elections were held nearly one week after Democrats gained three seats in last week’s General Election, strengthening the caucus to 23 members.

“I am grateful and honored by the support of my colleagues and humbled by the trust they have placed in me to lead them forward,” Costa said. “Our momentum has never been stronger and the caucus more unified in facing the challenges in front of us.

“As we welcome three new members and welcome back caucus members who are already serving Pennsylvania, we look forward to next session with renewed energy and optimism for the future.”

Prior to being elected Democratic Leader by his colleagues, Costa served as Democratic chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. He was first elected to the Senate in 1996 and previously served as Allegheny County Register of Wills (1992-96) and Deputy Sheriff (1984-89).

Other Democratic senators elected to leadership were:

Sen. Anthony Williams (D-Phila./Delaware) was reelected Senate Democratic whip. Williams joined the Senate in 1998. He began his career in public service at the age of 31, first winning office as a state representative.

“As caucus members and Pennsylvania residents, we recognize the depth and breadth of the issues facing us during the next legislative session,” Williams said. “I look forward to having meaningful discussions with my colleagues and bringing members together as we work towards solutions that will move Pennsylvania forward.”

Sen. Vincent Hughes (D-Phila./Montgomery) was again elected Senate Democratic Appropriations Committee chair. Hughes has served in the state legislature since 1987. He was elected to the Senate in 1994 and also previously served as Democratic Caucus chairman.

“We’ve worked hard over the last two years to make progress and deliver positive results amid a challenging political landscape,” Hughes said. “With increased strength in the caucus, we can continue to focus on job creation and finding solutions to education funding issues that will help Pennsylvania families and their children.”

Sen. Richard Kasunic (D-Fayette/Somerset) was reelected caucus chairman. Kasunic was elected to the Senate in November 1994 but also served as a member of the state House of Representatives.

“Working with the members of the caucus we’ll continue to address the issues that are impacting the lives of families and business owners,” Kasunic said. “In the next session, Senate Democrats will remain focused on improving the lives of working Pennsylvanians and paving a solid, sustainable path for the next generation.”

Sen. Christine Tartaglione (D-Philadelphia) will again serve as Democratic Caucus secretary. She was elected to the Senate in 1994. Prior to her election to the Senate, the Philadelphia Democrat served as business representative for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union.

“We’re energized moving into next session,” Tartaglione said. “With the gain of three additional members, our voice will be stronger as we work together on the programs and initiatives that will help grow jobs and increase training opportunities for working Pennsylvanians.”

Sen. Lisa Boscola (D-Northampton/Lehigh/Monroe) was reelected to the leadership team as Democratic Policy Committee chair. Boscola was first elected to the state House in 1994. She was elected to the Senate in 1998.

Boscola’s Democratic Policy Committee has been very active during the last session, holding public hearings on a wide range of issues in many locales across Pennsylvania.

Boscola said that she is “looking forward to next session because we can continue concentrating our efforts on making Pennsylvania a place where families and businesses alike come to grow and thrive for years to come. “

Sen. Wayne Fontana (D-Allegheny) is also returning as a member of the Senate Democratic Leadership. Fontana will serve as Caucus administrator for the 2013-14 session.

Fontana was first elected to the Senate in a special election in May 2005 and was reelected to full terms in 2006 and 2010.

“We have a great many challenges that we must meet in the upcoming session and I am pleased to be in a leadership position with the caucus,” Fontana said. “We have to work hard to ensure that priorities such as job creation, education and environmental protection are addressed.

“We need to have focus and be prepared to move aggressively in solving problems and we can do that if we work hard and look for common ground.”

Sen. Jim Ferlo (D-Allegheny/Armstrong/Westmoreland) will also be returning as vice chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Ferlo was first elected to the Senate in 2002 and is a former Pittsburgh City Council member.

“I am happy to welcome three new members to the Senate Democratic Caucus and I congratulate my leadership team for their reelection for the next session,” Ferlo said.

The new session of the General Assembly begins in January.

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

Police Looking for Megan's Law Offender

Police are looking for a Megan’s Law offender who left the Just for Jesus shelter in Brockway a month ago and hasn’t been seen since.

34-year-old Timothy Weidinger also did not notify state police of his current address, as is required by Megan’s Law.

Weidinger had unlawful contact with a minor in August of 2009, according to the Pennsylvania Megan's Law website.

He has balding brown hair, is 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighs 235 pounds. Anyone with information on his whereabouts should contact state police.

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Men Accused of Sexually Assaulting Teen

Two men are accused of sexually abusing a 15-year-old girl in Johnsonburg last month.

Police say 22-year-old Andrew Kowalski and 24-year-old Justin Latona, both of Johnsonburg, picked up the girl and her friend in St. Marys at around 4 a.m. October 14, and took them to a house in Johnsonburg where "many wild and crazy parties" have been held over the last several weeks.

Police say Latona started having sex with the girl, but Kowalski left after a few minutes.

Latona is charged with felony counts of statutory sexual assault and aggravated indecent assault. Kowalski is charged with involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and statutory sexual assault. Both men are scheduled for preliminary hearings on November 28 in front of District Judge Tony King.

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Corbett Signs Execution Warrant for
Clearfield County Man Who Killed Four

Harrisburg – Governor Tom Corbett has signed an execution warrant for Mark Newton Spotz of Clearfield County, convicted of kidnapping, robbing and brutally murdering a York County woman during a four-county homicide spree in 1995.

This execution warrant is for the murder of Penny Gunnet, 41, who was the third of Spotz’s four murder victims during a homicidal rampage between late January and early February 1995.

Gunnet was carjacked on her way to work around 6 a.m. on the morning of Feb. 2, 1995. Spotz forced his way into her car at gunpoint, stealing her cash, credit cards, wedding rings and other jewelry.

Gunnet’s body was found beneath her abandoned car several hours later. During the carjacking, she had been shot and run over, a pathologist said.

Spotz was arrested, tried separately and convicted in four different Pennsylvania counties for killing his brother and three women. He was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death for each woman he killed. For his brother’s death, Spotz was sentenced to 17 ½ to 35 years in prison.

Now 41, Spotz is incarcerated at the State Correctional Institution at Greene. His execution for Gunnet’s murder has been scheduled for Jan. 8, 2013.

The killing spree began Jan. 31, 1995, in Clearfield County when Spotz shot his brother, Dustin, after a fight.

He fled the area, stopping in Schuylkill County on Feb. 1, 1995. There, around 5:30 a.m., Spotz encountered June Ohlinger who had just arrived at the convenience store where she worked.

Spotz forced her at gunpoint back into her car, stealing her money and jewelry, including her wedding ring. Spotz then ordered Ohlinger out of the car, walked her to the center of the bridge and forced her to stand on a bridge railing. He then shot her in the back of her head and kicked her body into the creek below. Spotz drove off with her car.

The following day, concerned that he had been driving Ohlinger’s car for 24 hours and that the police might be tracking him, Spotz told his girlfriend he was going to get “the next woman.’’

The next woman was Gunnet, who like Ohlinger was on her way to work when she stopped her car at an intersection in York. A gun-wielding Spotz forced his way into her car, drove around for awhile, shot her twice at close range and then abandoned her car and dead body.

About an hour later, a police officer was called to investigate an abandoned car. Gunnet’s dead body lay twisted underneath the car with dried blood on her face and clothes.

Later that day, Spotz traveled to Harrisburg and abducted 71-year-old Betty Amstutz near her home in Dauphin County.

He drove with Amstutz to two banks, cashing checks worth a total of $1,600, and then used her credit card to make purchases at a sporting goods store and to rent a room at a Carlisle motel.

Hours later, Spotz then drove Amstutz to a rural road outside of Carlisle, shot her numerous times and left her bullet-riddled body in a roadside ditch.

Spotz then drove back to town, picked up friends, bought drugs and returned to the motel, bragging how he had shot and killed his brother and “these other women.’’

Shortly before 9 a.m. the next morning, Feb. 3, 1995, police located Spotz and surrounded the motel. Spotz saw the police, tossed his gun outside and turned himself in to authorities.

Spotz’s warrant for the murder of Gunnet is the 21st execution warrant signed by Governor Corbett. Executions in Pennsylvania are carried out by lethal injection.

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Senate GOP Elects Leadership Team for
2013-14 Legislative Session

HARRISBURG – Senate Republicans today elected their leadership team for the 2013-2014 legislative session.

Senator Joe Scarnati (R-25) has been nominated once again to serve as President Pro Tempore. The full Senate will vote on Scarnati’s nomination when it reconvenes in January. As President Pro Tempore, he will be responsible for appointing the chairpersons and members of the standing committees of the Senate. He will also play a significant role in negotiations with the Administration and the House of Representatives.

A native of Brockway in Jefferson County, Scarnati was elected to the Pennsylvania State Senate in 2000. A graduate of the Pennsylvania State University at DuBois, the Senator is a third-generation small business owner and served in local government.

Senator Dominic Pileggi (R-9) will serve his fourth term as Senate Majority Leader. His duties include overseeing the legislative agenda, developing policies and strategies for the Senate Republican Caucus, and playing a key role in floor debates. He will also have a major role in negotiating issues with the Administration and House of Representatives and in coordinating action on the Senate floor.

Pileggi was first elected to the Pennsylvania Senate in 2002. Prior to his election to the Senate, Senator Pileggi served as Mayor of the City of Chester from 1998 to 2002. He also served as a Chester City Councilman from 1994 to 1998 and on the school board for Chester-Upland School District.

Leadership of the Senate Appropriations Committee, one of the most influential of the standing committees, will remain with Senator Jake Corman (R-34) of Centre County. The committee reviews all legislation for its fiscal impact and plays a crucial role in developing the state budget.

Senator Pat Browne (R-16) of Lehigh County was elected Majority Whip. His duties include acting as assistant floor leader, working to gain support for legislation and assuring that Republican policies and strategies are maintained through the cooperative efforts of the majority caucus.

Senator Mike Waugh (R-28) of York County will serve as Majority Caucus Chairman for the 2013-2014 legislative session. As chairman he will preside over Republican caucus meetings to discuss bills and amendments and to develop caucus strategy.

As the Senate Majority Caucus Secretary, Senator Bob Robbins (R-50) of Mercer County will oversee all executive nominations submitted to the Senate for confirmation. He will coordinate the review of the background and experience of nominees and ensure that proper documentation is submitted.

Senate Republicans hold a 27-23 majority in the State Senate. Three Senate Republicans will retire at the end of the 2012 session. They include Senator Jeffrey Piccola (R-15), Senator Mary Jo White (R-21), and Senator Jane Earll (R-49).

Senator-elect Scott Hutchinson will be sworn in to represent the 21st Senatorial District in January.

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Grizzly Gary to Interview
Game Commission President for PCN-TV

This Sunday, November 18th, Grizzly Gary's Goin' Fishin' & Huntin" Radio show will be honored to have as our guest, Pa. Game Commission President Ralph Martone. Topics to be discussed will range from Marcellus Shale & the PGC to Antler restrictions 10 years later to the PGC's stand regarding Bigfoots/Sasquatches. We will also be taking listener calls and reading questions submitted via email.

The Pennsylvania Cable Network cameras will be in studio to record the show to re-air on PCN-TV during the week. Air dates are:

Tuesday, November 20th at 9:30 pm EST
Wednesday, November 21st at 11:00 am EST

Grizzly Gary's Goin' Fishin' & Huntin' Radio Show is known for its classic mix of important information for all hunters and anglers with a nice dollop of humor thrown in. Laugh & Learn is our motto!

We are about to celebrate our 8th year on the air and we invite you all to tune in on Sunday mornings from 7-9 am. We'll talk fishing! We'll talk hunting! It's more fun than pooping in the woods!

Grizzly Gary's Goin' Fishin" & Huntin' Radio Show can be heard at these fine stations:

103.1 FM The Fox, Warren Pa.

100.1 FM The Hero, Bradford Pa.

1340 AM Kissin' Oldies, Jamestown NY.

You can listen via the internet at: 100.1thehero.com

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Hunter Dies in Chautauqua County

A hunter from Butler, PA, was found dead in the woods of Chautauqua County Tuesday evening.

Sheriff’s deputies got a call at about 3:10 p.m. from a concerned friend of 68-year-old Allen “Randy” Smith, who had gone hunting.

Deputies and their K9 unit found Smith in a wooded area in Ashville at around 6:15. They say it appears something broke on his tree stand and he fell about 20 feet.

Smith was pronounced dead at the scene.

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Tempers Flare at Council Meeting

Purchase of New Firetruck Approved

By ANNE HOLLIDAY
WESB/WBRR News Director

Tempers flared during Tuesday’s Bradford City Council meeting.

Foster Township supervisor chairman Jim Connelly Jr., who is also a landlord in the city, asked how the city plans on paying off its 2012 bond.

Mayor Tom Riel said the city has set aside money for this year’s payment, and then started to explain why the city needed to borrow money, giving the “deplorable” condition of the streets as one reason.

Connelly interrupted, saying he agrees the streets are in deplorable condition, but he didn’t need an explanation on why the city borrowed the money. He wanted to know if the city is going to have to raise taxes to pay it off.

Riel asked if Connelly was finished; Connelly said he asked Riel a question; then they talked over each other for a few seconds.

“Mr. Connelly,” Riel said, “here is how it works here: A citizen stands and addresses council and we respond. We don’t banter and go back and forth like you do in the township …”

“Don’t pick on Foster Township …” Connelly said. “I asked you a question.” “And I asked you a question,” Riel said, “Are you finished?”

After a few more seconds of similar back-and-forth comments Connelly said, “How are the taxpayers going to pay a half a million dollars in debt? Answer it. …”

“Don’t demand I answer it,” Riel said. “I’ll answer it and if you interrupt me you’ll be found disruptive and removed from the room. We’ll continue to cut our expenses and increase our revenue, something we’ve been doing each and every year.”

“We wouldn’t have borrowed the money if we didn’t think we could have paid it back,” Riel said.

So there won’t be a tax increase? Connelly asked.

“One would hope that we wouldn’t have one,” Riel said.

Connelly then talked about the city’s millage rate, and said when he sees a half a million dollars in debt service being paid out, he knows people can’t afford it.

Riel started explaining cost-cutting measures in the city, including having about 20 percent fewer employees than they had in 2008. Riel then said employees pay for their health care, which is something they didn’t do before. At that point Connelly and several other Foster Township residents in attendance got up and left council chambers.

You can listen to part of the exchange here:

Also during Tuesday’s meeting, council approved the purchase of a custom fire engine and itemized list of small equipment at a price not to exceed $520,000. You can hear Fire Chief Chris Angell talk about the truck, and the process of buying a new truck here:

Councilman Rhett Kennedy explained that there is a requirement regarding “years of service,” and the truck they are putting in reserve will exceed the years of service. Having a new truck qualifies the department for a number of grants.

Council also enthusiastically accepted quotes from 6-V excavation to demolish dilapidated buildings at 8-10 Thompson Ave. for $4,340; 72 Jefferson St. for $4,468; and 77 W. Corydon St. for $2,680.

Riel noted that the money is coming from the Community Development Block Grant Program. Councilman Fred Proper thanked OECD Executive Director Sara Andrews “for finding a way to at least get a couple of the house we’ve been dealing with for what seems like years.”

Andrews said the process is continuing and Angell will be bringing her a list of the next three properties on Wednesday.

On a related note, council approved a payment of $2,131 to attorney Greg Henry from the Code Enforcement Fund.

Council also approved a change order for the Pine Street Pedestrian Bridge project that resulted in a net increase of $10,597. The project is funded through the CDBG program, a Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Grant and a private donation.

“We didn’t hold back any funds from paving streets to build that bridge,” Riel said. “If we hadn’t gotten the grant another town would. I’m glad you were able to secure that, Sara, despite some people’s views on it.”

“I think it’s a real nice addition to our downtown area and our trails system,” Andrews said.

She said the bridge should be ready for foot traffic within the next couple of weeks. She said the contractors are waiting for handrails, and still have some painting to do.

Also Tuesday, council approved the promotion of City of Bradford Police Officer Jason Daugherty to the rank of sergeant.

Daugherty said he is excited about the promotion, and said he is proud of how far the department has progressed over the past few years, and he believes the department’s future is bright.

Daugherty completed all necessary steps through the City of Bradford Civil Service Commission to obtain the rank of sergeant.

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... Chats with Anne Holliday

Bestselling and award-winning cookbook author Joanne Weir chats with Anne Holliday about helpful holiday cooking tips.

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

Emergency Crews at Crash Scenes

Emergency crews are on the scene of a one-vehicle rollover crash on Route 46 south of Smethport.

The accident happened at just after 5:30 p.m. Police radio reports say one person has been ejected from the vehicle and one person is still inside. Reports indicate serious injuries.

Also, at about 5:45 Foster Township Police were called to a one-car crash on East Main Street in front of Burger King. Earlier in the afternoon, two vehicles collided at the Foster Brook intersection. No injuries were reported in either Foster Township accident.

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

House GOP Re-Elects Smith Speaker

HARRISBURG – The 111 members of the incoming Pennsylvania House Republican Caucus today once again elected Rep. Sam Smith (R-Punxsutawney) as their choice for speaker of the House and Rep. Mike Turzai as majority leader for the 2013-14 legislative session.

Today’s caucus election comes seven days after Republicans increased their majority from 109 members going into Election Day, to 111 members and retaining control of the state House for the second session in a row.

Smith’s and Turzai’s elections were part of today’s reorganization session of the Republican Caucus. The formal election for speaker will take place in the full House when the 2013-14 session begins on Jan. 1, 2013. Republicans hold a 111-92 majority in the state House.

“We governed responsibly for the last two years and plan to keep moving in that direction,” Smith said. “We will continue to focus on the economy, private sector job-creation and restoring citizens’ confidence in state government.”

“We ran on our legislative record of accomplishment, which focused on fiscal responsibility, private sector job growth and integrity in government,” Turzai said. “While bringing about fiscal discipline and holding the line on taxes, we funded public education with more state dollars than ever before.”

The Republican leadership team includes:

SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE DESIGNEE: Rep. Sam Smith (66th District, Armstrong, Indiana and Jefferson counties). Smith was speaker of the House in the current session, and previously served as leader since 2003. In 2000, Smith was elected whip until April 2003, when he was elected majority leader after the death of Speaker Matthew J. Ryan. Smith was first elected to the House in 1986, succeeding his father, former Rep. Eugene “Snuffy” Smith.

MAJORITY LEADER: Rep. Mike Turzai (28th District, Allegheny County). Re-elected as majority leader, Turzai was first elected to the House in 2001. He previously served as whip during the 2009-2010 legislative session. In 2006, he was elected Republican Policy Committee chairman.

WHIP: Rep. Stan Saylor (94th District, York County). Saylor was first elected to the House in 1992. In the 2009-2010 session, Saylor served as the Republican Policy Committee chairman.

APPROPRIATIONS CHAIRMAN: Rep. William Adolph (165th District, Delaware County). Adolph was first elected to the House in 1988. Today, he was elected to his second full term as Republican chairman of the House Appropriations Committee.

CAUCUS CHAIRMAN: Rep. Sandra Major (111th District, Susquehanna, Wayne and Wyoming counties). Major was first elected to the House in 1994. She was re-elected to her fourth term as caucus chairman.

POLICY COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: Rep. Dave Reed (62nd District, Indiana County). Reed was first elected to the House in 2002. He was re-elected to his second term as the Policy Committee Chairman today. He also serves as chairman of the House Republican Campaign Committee.

CAUCUS ADMINISTRATOR: Rep. Dick Stevenson (8th District, Mercer and Butler counties). Stevenson was first elected to the House in 2000. Today he was elected to his second term in House leadership.

CAUCUS SECRETARY: Rep. Mike Vereb (150th District, Montgomery County). Vereb was first elected in 2006. This will be his second term as secretary.

Adolph said, “Pennsylvanians can be assured we will continue budgeting responsibly as we keep an eye on state revenues and expenditures. The House Appropriations Committee will keep its focus on effectiveness of state programs and whether they match their intent.”

“House Republicans are the fiscal stewards of the hard-earned dollars of Pennsylvania families and employers,” Turzai said.

The elections took place today in the House Republican Caucus Room in the Main Capitol Building. The 10 newly elected Republican members who will begin their terms in January participated in the balloting. Members who are leaving office did not participate in the election.

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