Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education and the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties will resume negotiations Thursday in Harrisburg. Still on the table... a State System proposal that would provide faculty $159 million in raises over the next three years, provided the union agrees to health care plan changes similar to those accepted by other employees across the Commonwealth. The raises proposed by the State System would range from 7.25 percent to 17.25 percent over the life of the new contract.
Construction of a new treatment plant for Suez Water began in the fall of 2014... and in two years... the firm constructed a 32 – million dollar state of the art plant on Irondale Road. The utility's Bob Manbeck brings us up to speed. And the new plant is above the flood zone established by the waters of Tropical Storm Lee back in 2011. The old plant will be used as a back-up...
Joint Session of XGR
Governor Wolf will address a joint session of the state Legislature. The House and Senate will convene in a joint session for the governor's speech, much like it does for a budget address. The governor is expected to outline a series of changes he would like to see in the laws governing opioid dispersal by doctors. This comes as preparations continue for dozens of "Centers for Excellence" to help treat the opioid epidemic...
Talk about a growing business... and setting your family up for long time... that's what Harvey Shaffer of Lightstreet did when he purchased a stand to sell peanuts.... and the family's place has been in the same location for 37 of their 50 – year run. The Shaffer's are content to sell their peanuts at fair time... putting an untold amount of hours in at their stand at the west end of the Grandstand.
It was a pretty good day at the Bloomsburg Fair Tuesday. According to figures released by the Fair Association late Tuesday night... a total of 44, 934 guests pass through the turnstiles. That's almost double the amount of people seen last year on Tuesday. Now... Thursday is a questionable day with windy and rainy weather on tap... with a high in the mid 60's.
A state senate committee has advanced a bill inspired by a tragic incident on Interstate 80... in near – by Union County. In July 2014 Ohio school teacher Sharon Budd was critically injured when teens on a highway overpass threw a rock through her car's windshield. Budd suffered brain damage and required permanent care from her husband Randy, who pushed Pennsylvania lawmakers - including Senator Gene Yaw - to enact a law requiring fencing on overpasses and bridges. Randy Budd committed suicide last month. Yaw's bill would bill would require PennDOT to study fencing any time they install a new bridge/overpass or modify an existing one...
The PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is handing out grants to volunteer fire companies throughout Pennsylvania. A total of 142 fire departments will share in over $600,000 from a federal program aimed at assisting smaller firefighting agencies. The funds are handed out by the PA Bureau of Forestry which is part of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. A spokesman says the departments' rural locations provide easy access to state parks and forests when fires break out.
Quick work by Salem Township police... nabbing two alleged thieves within an hour of a stick up at the Food Express in the 800 block of Fifth Street in Berwick Tuesday. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Wednesday's edition...39 – year old Robert Welch and a companion... Jesse Moore... were picked-up after one of the men took two cartons of L & M cigarettes. Both were arraigned on warrants for retail theft out of Hemlock Township. Charges for the Salem Township incident are pending. Both are sitting in the Columbia County Prison when they were not able to post $5,000 bail each.
A school in neighboring Luzerne County could be closed for months because of a mold problem. Wyoming Valley West Middle School in Kingston is now closed, and officials say it could remain closed for as long as six months. Last week, mold was discovered in two classrooms, but over the weekend, an inspection found the problem is much more widespread. School leaders announced at a meeting Tuesday that the middle school has a bigger mold problem than they first thought. The school district closed the school at the end of the day on Tuesday.
One county in our area is enacting a burn ban starting Friday. Snyder County commissioners voted Tuesday to put the ban in place for the next 30 days. Open burning is considered burning of any combustible material outdoors in either a burn barrel... fire ring or on the ground.
It will be Luzerne County Council's decision whether to allow the sale of a former juvenile detention center to a Wilkes-Barre contractor who wants to build a halfway house for women on the site. Jim Casey wants to buy the building on a hill above the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for $20,000 and repair the building, which is dilapidated after years of disuse. His submission was the only response to a county request for proposals for the property. The county had budgeted $400,000 for demolition before requesting proposals. The deal is contingent upon zoning approval and a permit from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
A state lawmaker is spearheading an annual effort to provide diapers to Pennsylvanians in need. It's as problem many people not be aware of but across the nation, one in three mothers find it difficult provide diapers for their children, an issue which also affects low income senior citizens who need similar products. As a result, Representative Rosita Youngblood is leading the third annual Capitol Diaper Drive. From now through October 2nd, boxes of new unopened diapers and adult undergarments are being collected throughout the state Capitol.