Showing posts from June 6, 2010

Derby Day on Dorothy Lane

There was some clowning around ... and some serious racing ... at the 3rd Annual Bradford Mastercraft All-American Soap Box Derby Saturday on Dorothy Lane. Hot dogs and meatball sandwiches were popular with some fans, while others preferred candy from the clown. This young lady can't believe he wants to charge $3 for Airheads. One of the young men reminded her, though, "He's kidding. He's a clown." On to the racing, and the prizes. Some people think it's not racing if there's not a wreck. Luckily, no one got hurt in this one. And the winners ... Mckenzie Smith, stock Janelle Housler, super stock

'Rainbows' Returning to ANF

For the third time since 1972, the national Rainbow Gathering will be held in the Allegheny National Forest. More than 15,000 people are expected to be in the forest from July 1-7. They haven’t decided yet exactly where they will gather. The gathering was held in Allegheny National Forest in 1986 and 1999. In 1999, they stayed in the Marienville area. In 1986, they were closer to Warren. The Rainbow Gathering of Living Light is a freeform celebration of Spirit and community that is open to all peaceful peoples and devoid from commercial interests, according to their website.

Emporium Man Charged with Homicide

An Emporium man has been charged with killing a Jefferson County couple in their home in April. 45-year-old Steven Rebert is charged with two counts each of criminal homicide and aggravated assault and one count of burglary. James and Vicky Shugar were found shot to death in their home just south of Brockway on April 12. Rebert is jailed without bail. State police and Jefferson County District Attorney Jeff Burkett held a news conference Friday evening to announce Rebert’s arrest. Police say the Shugars' neighbors provided key pieces of evidence that led to Rebert's arrest. One woman reported a suspicious vehicle to them March 3. A man saw a man parked in a car in the area. He wrote down the license number and said the man had a bolt-action rifle with him and knives in his belt. The license number belonged to Rebert's car. Two other residents also saw a car with one person in it parked along the road about 100 yards from the Shugars' home on March 3. Police said

Sestak: PA Should Take a Pause

By ANNE HOLLIDAY WESB/WBRR News Director Second in a series Pennsylvania should take a pause in its Marcellus Shale drilling activity until it gets all its ducks in a row, according to Congressman Joe Sestak. Sestak believes more environmental safeguards have to be put into place, more Pennsylvanians should be trained to work on Marcellus Shale wells and the state should impose an excise tax on drilling companies. "We want it to be jobs that are created for Pennsylvanians. We want it be environmentally sound so we don’t have higher costs for our children and grandchildren to pay. And, we want to make sure an excise tax is placed upon these oil companies so Pennsylvanians reap the bounty, or part of the bounty, from their ownership of the Marcellus Shale," he told WESB and The HERO Friday afternoon. “Let’s do this smart,” Sestak said. “Far too often government lets a crisis happen before they act.” Sestak is a co-sponsor of the House version of the FRAC (Fracturing Resp

Snyder Urges Paterson to Keep Promise

CATTARAUGUS TERRITORY, N.Y.(news release) -- Seneca Nation of Indians President Barry E. Snyder Sr. today urged Governor Paterson to keep his promise to the Nation regarding rational dialogue on any and all proposals on taxing of Native American tobacco products. "In light of today's report, which calls for collection of sales tax on our products, we want to remind the governor of his pledge for an ongoing, rational dialogue on this critical issue," President Snyder said. "This, and prior governors, have shown consistency in honoring our sovereign treaty rights despite continued outside pressures to dishonor our unique status. We commend that and have every hope there is no change in that stance." The NYS State Senate Committee on Investigations and Government Operations today issued a report titled "Executive Refusal: Why the State Has Failed to Collect Cigarette Taxes on Native American Reservations." The report is critical of Governor Paterson f

AAUW Announces New Officers

The Bradford Branch of the American Association of University Women has announced its elected officers for 2010. From left to right: Terri Smith Leven, Treasurer; Sandra Rhodes, Program Co-chair; Marlene Walb, Co-President; Stephanie Seagren, Co-President; Sharie Radzavich, Program Co-Chair; and Pam Morrison, Secretary. Since 1881, AAUW has worked to advance equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy and research. The Bradford Branch of AAUW was established in 1921. Photo courtesy of Holly Spittler

State Troopers Honored for Actions in Warren, Monroe, Cambria Counties

Hershey - State Police Commissioner Frank E. Pawlowski today presented three troopers who risked their lives in separate incidents in Monroe, Warren and Cambria counties with the State Police Medal of Honor - the department's highest award. Pawlowski said fellow troopers lost their lives in two of the incidents. The medals were presented during an awards ceremony at the State Police Academy in Hershey to Tpr. Robert J. Lombardo, 36, of Troop N, Swiftwater, Monroe County; Andrew G. Goss, 30, of Troop E, Warren, Warren County; and Tpr. Brian N. Lampel, 37, of Troop A, Ebensburg, Cambria County. "Each of these troopers put his life on the line to protect the citizens of Pennsylvania," Pawlowski said. "They are courageous and dedicated individuals whose heroic actions reflect the high standards of the Pennsylvania State Police." Lombardo was shot in an incident that claimed the life of Tpr. Joshua D. Miller, 34, of Troop N, Swiftwater, on June 7, 2009. Lombardo

Fish and Boat Commission Wants
Marcellus Shale Severence Tax

Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission repeated the need today to pass a Marcellus shale severance tax and dedicate a portion of its revenues to make sure that natural gas is developed with as little impact as possible to fish, reptiles, amphibians, and other aquatic organisms and the habitats upon which they depend. The Commission wants to help the industry protect Pennsylvania waters and habitats and comply with the environmental laws that the General Assembly promulgates. Executive Director John Arway said, “We understand the realities of today’s natural gas rush and recognize the importance of Marcellus gas to fueling our national energy needs; however, this cannot be at the expense of our natural resources, since we have lived the story and have seen what happened to our waters when Pennsylvania coal was extracted from our mountains almost a century ago. We cannot, in good conscience, let that happen again.” Unfortunately, the Commission does not have the res

Seven Welfare Fraud Arrests in Catt Co.

Seven people have been arrested for welfare fraud in Cattaraugus County, and 11 people have been disqualified from future cash and food stamp benefits, according to an e-mail sent to WESB and The HERO from the Cattaraugus County Sheriff’s Office. 29-year-old Brandie Buchanan of Olean is accused of receiving more than $41,000 in food stamps and cash and not reporting long term disability payments she was receiving from September of 2003 to May of 2008. 30-year-old Stacy Nichols of Conewango is accused of receiving more than $3,700 in food stamps and not reporting Pennsylvania unemployment from September of 2009 to March of this year. 39-year-ld Renee Preston of Filmore is accused of receiving $1,460 in food stamps and not reporting that she was disqualified from receiving benefits in Allegany County from October of 2008 to January of this year. 43-year-old Martha Gomez of Delevan received $2,000 in food stamps and didn’t report her job from March of 2007 to January of 2008. 38-year

Police to Release Information
Related to Shugar Homicides

State Police and the Jefferson County district attorney are holding a news conference this evening to release information related to the homicide investigation into the deaths of James and Vicky Shugar. They say they’re not releasing any further information until the 6 p.m. news conference. The Shugars’ bodies were found in their home just south of Brockway on April 12. Wayne Shugar died of gunshot wounds to the neck and torso. Vicky Shugar died of a gunshot wound to the torso. Late last week, police executed a search warrant in the 400 block of Broad Street in Emporium. State police in DuBois didn’t release any further information about the search or the warrant.

Many Requests to Speak with an Officer

Bradford City Police had many requests to speak with an officer and checked on the welfare of a few people, according to the complaint report and request sheet faxed to WESB and The HERO by the police department. Officers also looked into reports of harassment on Congress and Main streets and a theft in Union Square. They received parking complaints from Main and Congress streets and Belleview Avenue and initiated a traffic stop at the intersection of Williams Street and Rosedale Avenue. They were called to a vehicle lockout in a store parking lot, where the child was inside the vehicle, and also were asked to check on – you guessed it – a suspicious person, this time on Mechanic Street.

EOG Resumes Work at Punxsy Hunt Club

A week after a well blowout spewed natural gas onto the ground and into the air for more than 16 hours EOG Resources has been authorized to resume work at two other wells near the Punxsutawney Hunt Club. DEP says those two wells have no environmental or operational violations. Work will not resume at the blown-out well while an investigation continues, and dozens of the company's other wells remain idle. The well blowout happened at about 8 p.m. June 3 and was capped at around noon on June 4.

PCO in Ridgway Honored by State Police

A communications operator with Ridgway-based state police has received the Police Communications Operator of the Year Award. 59-year-old Jeffrey Knapp of Brockway was presented with the award today during a ceremony at the State Police Academy in Hershey. State Police Commissioner Frank Pawlowski says Knapp’s “work performance and volunteer spirit reflect well on the Pennsylvania State Police.” He describes Knapp as a diligent worker who deals efficiently with his daily works tasks. Knapp serves as a member of the board and volunteer for the Troop C Camp Cadet Program and helps Trooper Bruce Morris with Project Gifts for Elk County, a program that collects toys for distribution to Elk County children. He is a long-time member of the Brockway Volunteer Hose Company, where he serves as president and fund-raising chairman. He served for more than 10 years as an emergency medical technician with the Brockway Ambulance Service, and is a former state EMT instructor. Knapp and his wife,

Expect More Traffic Tie-Ups

Get used to the traffic delays on Bolivar Drive and East Main Street. PennDOT says work will continue next week on Bolivar Drive with flaggers present and drivers should expect alternating traffic patterns and travel-time delays. Some motorists told us they were stopped for about 15 minutes on Thursday. Traffic was bumper-to-bumper from Bolivar Drive to South Kendall Avenue many times during the day. ~~~~ PennDOT issues the following travel update for the Route 219/Bradford Bypass project in McKean County. This update is for the week of June 14. All work is weather and schedule dependent. Glenn O. Hawbaker, Inc. of State College is the contractor on this $28 million job. · Work on the Route 219 southbound ON-ramp at Elm Street continues. Traffic is using the existing shoulder. Contractor crew will be working close to the roadway, placing concrete for a new barrier wall. Expect delays during work hours. · Northbound traffic is sharing a lane with southbound traffic, separated by

Beer Fest at the Pennhills Club

The Pennhills Club is hosting a beer festival starting at 3 p.m. Saturday. Music will be provided by 3 Guys Drinking Beer. More than 30 varieties of beer will be available, as well as hors d'oeuvres, sausage, wings and pizza. The beer festival is sponsored by Bradford City Beers and Glenwood Distributing. Admission is $25 per person, and you must be at least 21 years old to attend.

Win a Lobster and Clam Bake!

Go here for the details.

Cuomo to Sue

New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has served the social networking site with notice that’s he’s going to sue them for not protecting children from being exposed to child pornography. Cuomo says a three-month undercover investigation revealed significant lapses in Tagged’s response to user reports of graphic images of children being sexually abused, inappropriate sexual communications between adults and minors, and content that advocates pedophilia. One example Cuomo gave is a a user profile with a slideshow of children, some of whom appear to be younger than five years of age, in sexually explicit poses, exposing their genitals, and engaged in sex acts with other children.

Committee OKs Legislation to Reduce
Burden of Mandates on School Districts

HARRISBURG – The Senate Education Committee approved legislation this week sponsored by Sen. Jake Corman (R-Bellefonte) to extend a provision of the state's Empowerment Act that allows school districts to apply for waivers from certain mandates. Under Senate Bill 250, the sunset date for the Mandate Waiver Program will be removed, allowing the program to continue past the scheduled ending date of June 30, 2010. "Mandate waivers have proven a successful means to give school districts more flexibility to operate effectively," said Corman. "The program is worth continuing and provides a significant costs savings to both school districts and taxpayers." The Mandate Waiver Program allows school districts, intermediate units and vocational-technical schools to apply for waivers from certain requirements in the Public School Code. To be eligible for a waiver, school entities must have their application approved by the Department of Education and show the wai

Nordenberg Presents Affirmative Action
Award to Pitt-Bradford Admissions Office

University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Mark Nordenberg presented the 2010 Chancellor’s Affirmative Action Award on Wednesday to the Admissions Office of the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford. “I’m pleased that Chancellor Nordenberg and the selection committee saw fit to acknowledge the work and success of Alex Nazemetz and our admissions staff,” said Dr. Livingston Alexander, president of Pitt-Bradford. “The colleagues who make up the staff are deeply dedicated and committed to the principles of affirmative action, and they are truly deserving of this special recognition.” From Fall 2006 to Fall 2009, the number of minority students on campus increased 143 percent. Minority students are now 11.2 percent of the overall full-time student population of 1,453. Nazemetz said that diversity plays an important part in overall recruitment and in maintaining a steady population of 1,500 full-time-equivalent students. “All of our s

Karen Whitney New President at Clarion

The State System of Higher Education board has approved the hiring of Karen Whitney as the next president of Clarion University. Whitney is a former vice chancellor at Indiana University-Purdue University in Indianapolis. Two interim presidents also have been selected: David Werner at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Barbara Dixon at Lock Haven University. The board also extended the contracts of presidents at Bloomsburg, California , Cheyney, East Stroudsburg, Edinboro, Kutztown, Mansfield, Millersville, Shippensburg, Slippery Rock and West Chester through June 2013.

Strawberries on Wheels

Remember the Red Cross Strawberry Shortcake Drive-Thru from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Friday in the First Presbyterian Church parking lot off Congress Street. Proceeds benefit the Red Cross Meals on Wheels program.

Woman Dies in Salamanca Crash

A Cattaraugus, NY, woman is dead after a dump truck landed on top of her van in a crash this morning on Central Avenue in Salamanca. Cattaraugus County Sheriff's deputies say it appears the van went through a stop sign and was broadsided by the truck. The truck then pushed the van onto the front yard of a home and turned over on top of the van, trapping the woman inside. Deputies haven’t released the woman’s name yet, but sources tell WESB and The HERO that the woman's husband had just been taken by ambulance to a hospital and she was on her way to be with him.

Scarnati Appreciative of Baker's Efforts

Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati expressed extreme gratitude to Representative Matt Baker for his efforts to amend the language currently in Senate Bill 9 into an illegal workers bill in the House of Representatives. The amendment failed mostly down party lines with a few Republican Representatives also voting “no.” Senate Bill 9 and the language in Representative Baker’s amendment would prohibit illegal aliens living in Pennsylvania from receiving public benefits, such as Medicaid, welfare, or in-state tuition. “I am grateful to Representative Baker for attempting to place this common sense language into a House Bill,” Scarnati stated. “Clearly, Representative Baker recognizes that Pennsylvania citizens should not have to sacrifice their hard-earned dollars for individuals living in this country illegally.” Scarnati also mentioned that Senate Bill 9 has overwhelmingly been passed in the Senate the past two legislative sessions. “Without question, we have too many il

Tops Names Brocato Director of
Community Relations, Special Events

WILLIAMSVILLE, NY – Tops Friendly Markets today announced the promotion of Andrew Brocato to director of community relations and special events. In his new, expanded role, Brocato will oversee all community relations activities for the company as well as manage all charitable donations under Tops’ “Living here, Giving here” commitment to local, non-profit organizations. “Andy brings to Tops over 20 years of experience in the field of community relations and his hard work and tireless dedication to the communities we serve is the reason he was chosen for this much-deserved promotion,” said Diane Colgan, Tops Markets vice president of sales and marketing. “Andy manages over $10 million annually in charitable donations from Tops to the hundreds of deserving organizations we partner with,” said Colgan. Brocato has been a part of the Tops team for 13 years in various capacities, including senior manager of community relations, manager of promotions/sports marketing, and media c

Just Ducky -- Again

"Our" ducks are back. Dan Griffin/Igor tried feeding them some bread to get them to come closer but, for some reason, they didn't want it. My theory is that they knew we had donuts inside and thought we were holding out on them.

Change in 'Bootjack' Detour

Due to weather and schedule changes, a detour around Route 219 “Bootjack” roadwork near Ridgway has been delayed until Monday, June 14. This detour will route northbound traffic down the “truck bypass” to Route 120 and back to Route 219. Signs will be in place directing motorists through the detour. The detour is expected to be in place for about 15 days. Southbound traffic will follow the normal route. The activation of the detour on Monday marks the start of Phase 2 on the project. Phase 2 stretches northbound from the truck bypass to the intersection of Main and Depot Streets in Ridgway. Along with the detour, motorists should be alert for: · Channelizing devices will be in place at both ends of the project to guide traffic. · Flaggers will be present to direct traffic as necessary. · Southbound lanes will experience lane shifts as construction progresses. · Southbound traffic will be one lane only during construction. · No restrictions will be in place for oversized loads

263rd Arrest by Child Predator Unit

HARRISBURG - Agents from the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit have arrested a Lancaster County man accused of sending nude photos and webcam videos to what he believed was a 14-year old girl. The "girl" was actually an undercover agent who was using the online profile of a young teen. Attorney General Tom Corbett identified the defendant as Eric Lee Werner, age 25, of 191 Falmouth Road, Bainbridge. Corbett said that Werner allegedly used an Internet chat room to approach the undercover agent, asking if she was a virgin. During their first online chat Werner allegedly proposed sending some nude photos of himself to the girl, but cautioned her to keep the activity secret, adding, "if your mom or dad see me giving you naked pics that would be bad." According to the criminal complaint, allegedly Werner engaged in a series of sexually explicit online chats over the next several months, sending nude photos and graphic webcam videos. Additionally, Werner propo

Three Arrested Following Search of
Suspected Lock Haven Meth Lab

HARRISBURG -- Agents from the Attorney General's Bureau of Narcotics Investigation along with local police officers from the Attorney General's Meth Task Force have arrested three people in connection with the search of a suspected meth lab, located in a Lock Haven hotel room. Attorney General Tom Corbett identified the defendants as Meloney Confer, 38, William Confer, 40 and Billie Jo Laubach, 37 all of Lock Haven, Clinton County. Corbett said the arrests were based on information about the defendants' alleged use of methamphetamine at the Fallon Hotel, 131 East Water St., Lock Haven. Agents executed a series of four search warrants on June 8, 2010, including Room 112 at the Fallon Hotel, the Confer's apartment, as well as Laubach's apartment, which had allegedly been used as the site for a meth lab. Nearly a gallon of liquid chemical meth or "meth oil" was seized from Laubach's residence. Corbett said that the meth oil could have been converted

Poll Shows Strong Public Support for
Merit Selection of Appellate Court Judges

Harrisburg – Governor Edward G. Rendell today heralded the release of a new public opinion poll showing 93 percent of Pennsylvanians want the opportunity to vote on whether to change the way appellate court judges are selected. Governor Rendell was joined for the poll’s release by former Pennsylvania governors Dick Thornburgh, Tom Ridge and Mark Schweiker – all Republicans. Governors Thornburgh and Ridge participated in the event by telephone. “Merit selection is a bipartisan issue, and a long overdue reform,” said Governor Rendell. “There are many reasons why Pennsylvania needs to make this change, and the bottom line is that if we embrace merit selection, we will get the most qualified, fair and impartial judges to serve our residents. The people understand this, which is why they overwhelmingly want the right to vote on a new way to select judges.” The poll, conducted recently for Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts and its lobbying affiliate, PMCAction, found 73 percent do not beli

The Cherry on the Sundae

Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary Russell C. Redding and Alternate PA Dairy Princess Karla Stolzfus of Bedford County place a cherry on the top of a giant sundae created on the steps of the capitol building. The sundae was created to celebrate Dairy Month during June. Photo courtesy of Commonwealth Media Services

Sen. Casey Amendment Would
Reinstate COBRA Premium Assistance

WASHINGTON, DC—U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) were joined by fourteen other senators today in introducing an amendment to the American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act of 2010 that would reinstate the expired COBRA health care premium assistance for laid off workers. "Millions of Americans have been hard hit by the recession and lost their jobs through no fault of their own," said Senator Casey. "Unfortunately, some people in Washington want to pull up the ladder and take away help for these struggling families. Not extending COBRA premium assistance will hurt hundreds of thousands of people in Pennsylvania and across the country and it will add further strain on our recovering economy." “We need to prevent unemployed workers for joining the rolls of the uninsured,” Brown said. “When there are few jobs to be had, the inability to afford COBRA premiums becomes an even more acute problem. I’ve received letters and emails from

Rep. Thompson Website Revamped

Washington, D.C.—U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, R-Howard, today announced his official website has been revamped and improved for better access and readability. “It is my hope that the new site will be easier to navigate and more user friendly, as well as being more attractive than the old site,” said Thompson. Please go to to explore the site. The address for the site is the same as the old address, only the content and layout have changed. “We have listened to comments on the old website and hope that the new one corrects problems and oversights,” said Thompson. “In this age of instant information, it is crucial to bring you the most up-to-date site that we can. This new site contains an issues page and real-time multi-media access to things like Facebook and Twitter.” The previous site was a standard house–issued website. Many Members pay outside organizations for redesign. But the Thompson office took advantage of the design team working in Hous

Group Supports Wilderness Proposal

WARREN -- The Clarion University Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society (CU-TWS) has formally added its support to the Citizens¹ Wilderness Proposal for Pennsylvania¹s Allegheny National Forest, produced by the Warren-based non-profit organization Friends of Allegheny Wilderness (FAW). CU-TWS is a chapter of the international Wildlife Society, and promotes many of the same values and principles embodied in the Citizens¹ Wilderness Proposal. Some of CU-TWS¹s goals, also inherent in the proposal, are to augment educational opportunities for students in natural resources, provide and conserve high quality habitat for native wildlife, and build the active support of an informed citizenry. "Setting aside the tracts of land delineated in the Citizens¹ Wilderness Proposal will provide open space and a natural environment in which members of The Wildlife Society can enjoy the peace, serenity, and healing qualities of a wilderness area," said Luke Bobnar, president of CU-TWS. &quo

Trooper Who Prevented Head-On Crash
to be Honored at State Police Academy

A state trooper who helped prevent a head-on crash on Route 6 on Christmas Eve by putting his own life in danger is one of several troopers who will be honored during a ceremony Friday at the State Police Academy in Hershey. A drunk driver was speeding eastbound in the westbound lanes of Route 6 near Irvine when Trooper Andrew Goss passed the front car in a line of westbound motorists and blocked both lanes of traffic with his cruiser. The truck driven by 27-year-old Nash Edward Harvey of Titusville crashed into the passenger side of the cruiser, then hit the front car in line. Goss simply said there was no other decision to make. On Monday, Harvey pleaded guilty in Warren County Court to DUI, having a blood alcohol content more than twice the legal limit and four counts of recklessly endangering another person.

Scarnati: Public Should be Informed About
Convicts Being Released to Their Area

Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson) amended Senate Bill 1161 to require public hearings to be held in communities where convicted murderers are being released into group homes. The Board of Probation and Parole will be responsible for holding the aforementioned public hearings. “This amendment is simply a public safety measure in order to inform and alert the communities when a convicted murderer will be released to a group home in their area,” Scarnati stated. “Citizens should also have the right to express themselves in a public forum on the circumstances surrounding the location of the individual.” Scarnati mentioned that this amendment was prompted by the lack of public information given to the residents in the Jefferson County area when a convicted murderer was to be placed in a local group home. In 1993, Ernie Simmons was convicted and sentenced to death for the 1992 beating and strangulation of 80-year-old Anna Knaze of Johnstown. But a federal judge r

Erie Nurse Accused of Falsifying Records
Was Used for Cases in McKean County

An Erie County sexual assault nurse examiner accused of falsifying reports has worked on some sexual assault cases in McKean County, and the district attorney’s office is now reviewing all cases she was involved in. Authorities in Erie say they found erroneous information in 11 cases handled by former St. Vincent Forensic Nurse Rhonda Henderson. McKean County District Attorney Ray Lean says, in a news release, that Henderson has been used in “some sexual assault cases by our office over the last fews years” and they understand the seriousness of the allegations. His office is now reviewing all cses she was involved in to determined what effect, if any, these inconsistences may have on the integrity of the criminanl justice system in McKean County. Learn says once this determination has been made victims, defense attorneys and/or defendants will be notified of any case in which they are affected. His office has also contacted McKean County Children and Youth Services, though solicito

Company Ordered to Suspend Post-Hydraulic Fracturing Activites

HARRISBURG -- The Department of Environmental Protection today ordered C.C. Forbes, of Washington, PA, to suspend all post-hydraulic fracturing activities on Marcellus Shale wells in the state immediately as it continues its investigation into a June 3 well blowout in Clearfield County. DEP Secretary John Hanger said EOG Resources -- the company that owned the well in Lawrence Township -— hired C.C. Forbes as a contractor to provide post-hydrofracturing services at the site. Hanger said DEP’s order also requires C.C. Forbes to provide site and equipment records specific to the well, including any written, photographic and video documentation. The company must also furnish the names of its employees who were working at the site or have knowledge of the equipment used there. The secretary said those employees must be made available to the department for questioning. “We need to fully investigate the equipment used by this company to ensure that other sites in Pennsylvania are not in

Yet Another Suspcious Person

Bradford City Police on Tuesday got yet another report of a suspicious person. This time on Forman Street, according to the complaint report and request sheet faxed to WESB and The HERO by the police department. Officers also investigated thefts on Pike and Davis streets, a retail theft at a downtown store and a motor vehicle accident on Pleasant Street. The were called to hit and runs on Congress Street and in a Main Street parking lot, a disturbance on Brookline Court, harassment on South Center Street and criminal mischief on Birch Street. Police also received a report of public intoxication on Main Street and got animal complaints from Rockland Avenue and Mechanic Street.

Some Say It's Not-So-Pretty in Pink

By ANNE HOLLIDAY WESB/WBRR News Director There is something several people in Bradford don’t think is pretty in pink. The Riddell House. Sam Sylvester of the Historical Architectural Review Board said he was asked to attend Tuesday’s council meeting to talk about "the appropriateness of the recent pink job at the Riddell House.” “Joe (Troutman) is a friend of mine and I appreciate (that) he’s doing what he’s doing. But if the HARB is to be effective, we need to see the request first. We have not seen the request," Sylvester said. He said there are several other incidents in town where people have done work without contacting HARB, but he was just at the meeting to talk about the Riddell House. City Clerk John Peterson said the city received several complaints, so he contacted commercial building inspector Mark Grassi. Grassi was told Tuesday morning the building was being repainted the same colors it had previously been painted. “Photographs from Google Earth show that

Sweets and Spaghetti

Shirley Barrett serves dessert to Joe Hinaman at the Red Cross Spaghetti Dinner at Evans Memorial United Methodist Church in Lewis Run, PA. The McKean-Potter Counties American Red Cross partnered with the church to hold a benefit dinner last Friday evening to honor local Emergency Services personnel and also to raise funds for disaster victims. Barrett, who co-chaired the event, hand made over 850 of her special meatballs for the event. The Red Cross thanks all of those who supported the event and attended the dinner. Photo courtesy of the Red Cross

City to Apply for Early Intervention

By ANNE HOLLIDAY WESB/WBRR News Director Bradford City Council has taken a tremendous step in the right direction toward rectifying the city’s financial problems, according to Mayor Tom Riel. During its meeting Tuesday, council agreed to take any and all actions necessary to initiate the application process for the state’s Early Intervention Program. The program, administered by the Department of Community and Economic Development, was designed to help municipalities that are financially troubled, but not yet formally distressed. The Early Intervention Program supports municipalities by offering grants that can be used to pay costs associated with hiring an independent financial consultant to prepare a three- to five-year financial plan and management review of the municipality. “This is probably one of the biggest steps the City of Bradford can possibly take to try to rectify our financial problems,” Riel said. “It’s probably overdue, but I think … it’s going to work for us and i

Serious Shortage of 'Type O' Blood

The blood supply has been declining since Memorial Day weekend, but this past weekend had a sudden increase in the use of type O blood, according to the Community Blood Bank of Northwest Pennsylvania. Type O negative is critically low. O negative is the "universal donor," meaning any patient regardless of their blood type can receive it. O negative is typically used in emergencies and traumas. The Community Blood Bank in Bradford is open from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday in Union Square. No appointment is needed. "There has just been a constant drain of type O blood, but the other types aren't doing too well either," says Dan Desrochers, director of marketing at the CBB. "We've just seen a sudden spike in the use of type O negative in the past few days and we need it to safeguard local patient safety."

We Can Lead

Here's a quick interview with Cory Matchett of We Can Lead , a group of business leaders in support of comprehensive, forward-looking energy and climate policies. Listen here .

OGH to Build Ambulatory Surgery Center

Olean General Hospital has announced plans to build a free-standing outpatient ambulatory surgery center on the hospital campus at 500 Main St. in Olean. An ambulatory surgery center is a medical facility in which surgical procedures not requiring an overnight hospital stay are performed. Olean General Hospital’s new 22,000-square-foot ambulatory surgical structure will include four operating suites and three endoscopic suites, and will also include pre-operative and post-operative recovery areas, waiting rooms, consultation areas, and support space. The hospital currently performs over 7,600 ambulatory surgical procedures each year. “Because free-standing ambulatory surgery centers have become the standard of care for outpatient surgery, we want area patients to have access to this type of surgical facility,” said Timothy J. Finan, president and CEO of Olean General Hospital and Upper Allegheny Health System, the parent company of Olean General and Bradford Regional Medical Center

Chief Wolbert Hoping to Retire

By ANNE HOLLIDAY WESB/WBRR News Director Foster Township Police Chief Jeff Wolbert is hoping to retire next year. Wolbert made the unofficial announcement during Monday’s Foster Township supervisors meeting after a question by Interstate Parkway resident Joe Piganelli. Piganelli said, because they know he attends the township meetings, several people asked if he knew anything about Wolbert retiring. Wolbert said he hopes to retire in January. He’ll be retirement age in November. Piganelli then asked if the supervisors had a plan to name a new police chief. “We’ve had some discussions” supervisor Chris Wolcott said. Piganelli asked if the discussions would be just among the supervisors, or if the public would be involved. “I don’t see that the public needs to be necessarily involved at this stage,” Wolcott said, adding that the supervisors are willing to take comments and suggestions. “We don’t even have a plan right at the moment,” Wolcott said. “We’ve had some discussions bu

Woman's Purse Stolen from House

Someone entered a woman’s house early Sunday morning and stole her purse. 23-year-old Jessica Lou Ann Prescott of Eldred tells police the incident happened at about 3:30 a.m. at her Main Street home. The purse contained a Hamlin Bank debit card and checkbook, various prescription medications, an Old Navy credit card, AAA card and a hemp necklace. Anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact Kane-based state police at 778-5555.

Resident: South Kendall Avenue
Looks Like Junkyard City

By ANNE HOLLIDAY WESB/WBRR News Director A South Kendall Avenue resident says her street looks like Junkyard City, and she doesn’t want Foster Township to have the code enforcement problems the City of Bradford has. Barb Price told Foster Township Supervisors during their meeting Monday night she’s ashamed to live in the township because of the condition of at least 10 properties on South Kendall. She said the city’s code enforcement problems are getting most of the attention lately but “Foster Township sure as hell isn’t much better than the city. So I think we better start working together to get this township the way it should be.” Price said she’s been told that the township’s code enforcement program is complaint driven. “I don’t know how much complaining this one person has to do,” she said. Price said she’s not going up and down the street trying to find houses that are in deplorable condition or junkyards on properties. She’s just complaining about the properties she se

MVAs, Theft and Noise in Bradford

Bradford City Police on Monday investigated motor vehicle accidents at the intersection of Jackson Avenue and Davis Street, and on Congress Street, and a retail theft at a downtown business, according to the complaint report and request sheet faxed to WESB and The HERO from the police department. Officers also got reports of a power line down on East Main Street, noise on Hill Street and an erratic driver on East Main Street. They also received several requests to speak with an officer.

Twin Tiers Theater Festival Brings
Broadway Summer Stock to WNY

By Eva B. Potter OLEAN, N.Y. – For an inexpensive getaway weekend with a sophisticated metropolitan feel, visit Olean, N.Y., this summer as the Twin Tiers Theater Festival (TTTF) launches its inaugural season of Broadway summer stock theater. New York City organizers Amy Kyzer, an actress and small theater company owner, and Rohit Kapoor, a professional production and set designer, scoped out the area last year. After conversations with Leslie and Nick Patrone, owners of the Olean Theatre Workshop (Washington Street Theatre), and former Olean Mayor David Carucci, the pair took the concept of a summer stock festival back to New York City. For many of their show business friends, who had spent summers performing in and producing shows at other summer stock festivals like Williamstown and the Berkshires, the idea of escaping to Olean’s welcoming grass- and tree-filled landscape provided instant appeal. All agreed a theater festival in Olean would be a perfect fit. Kyzer, bubbl

Tractor-Trailer, Pickup Truck Collide

A pickup truck and a tractor-trailer collided at the intersection of Route 6 and Telescope Road in Ulysses Township at 5:30 this morning. In a fax sent to WESB and The HERO, State police say 34-year-old John Simons of Genesee fell asleep at the wheel of the pickup. 46-year-old Timothy Portzline of Mount Pleasant Mills was just started to go through the intersection when Simons woke up, but his truck hit the rear axle of the trailer. The pickup spun around before coming to rest. Charges of careless driving and not using seatbelt will be filed against Simons. He suffered minor injuries. Portzline wasn’t hurt. The pickup had major damage. The tractor-trailer had disabling damage.

School Bus Crash at Fretz

Bradford City Firefighter Greg Lewis tends to people injured when their car hit a school bus in the Fretz Middle School parking lot Monday afternoon. The crash jammed the front door of the bus. Also pictured, in the third photo, is Bradford Area School District director of transportation Barry Bryan. While emergency crews were still on the scene of this "accident," at about 5:45 p.m., they got a report of another accident at the intersection of Jackson and Davis streets. P.S. The crash at Fretz was only a drill. I would love it if, during real accidents, Boo Coder told me to get closer to get a better picture ~~ A

Sestak: More Well Oversight Needed

Following a blowout at a Pennsylvania natural gas well, Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Congressman Joe Sestak called on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today to increase its oversight of Marcellus Shale development. The blowout at the natural gas well in Clearfield County last week, apparently caused by a failed blowout preventer, spewed polluted drilling water and natural gas 75 feet in the air and on the ground before being capped 16 hours later. The drilling liquid from the well’s hydraulic fracturing activities, whereby the liquids are shot underground at high pressure to break up shale and release its natural gas, flowed off the site and toward tributaries to Little Laurel Run. While the situation was eventually contained, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Hanger said the accident could have resulted in a “catastrophic incident that endangered life and property.” The circumstances of the accident are similar to those that led to the BP