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June 18, 2013

LEWISBURG – A Sunbury man is facing charges of kidnapping, endangering the welfare of a child and simple assault after he pointed a gun at a woman and then took a three –year-old girl from the woman. State Police say 19-year-old Darrin Simmons-Walton is charged with that incident Monday shortly after five pm at a home along Timberhaven Drive in Lewisburg. Police say the little girl was the daughter of Walton’s girlfriend. Police say Simmons-Walton violated a court order denying him contact with the little girl. The girl was unharmed and returned to her mother after police found Simmons-Walton in Sunbury and took him into custody. He’s now jailed on $150,000 bail.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

NUMIDIA – In Columbia County, a Locust Township man was jailed late Sunday after firing a handgun several times during an argument with his pregnant girlfriend. 22-year-old Christopher Cooper, of Numidia was drunk and suicidal during the incident. Cooper allegedly fired the gun at least three times while yelling at his girlfriend.  The Press Enterprise reports, Cooper is jailed on $25,000 bail.
(WGRC)

BODINES – In Lycoming County, two Trout Run area men pleaded guilty Monday to charges that were filed after they stuck a dead skunk in another man's mailbox in late April. The Sun Gazette reports, 31-year-old Nathaniel Salvatori, and47-year-old Kenneth Fernsler III, pleaded guilty before District Judge Gary Whiteman to charges of criminal mischief, disorderly conduct and harassment as a result of the incident. Salvatori and Fernsler each made arrangements to pay nearly $1,100 in fines and court costs.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT - A Williamsport man who bit another man in the neck at a river lot in Susquehanna Township, Lycoming County, will spend five to eleven months in county lockup for charges of simple assault and causing a motor vehicle accident involving damage to a camping trailer he backed into during the same incident. Police say 26-year-old Matthew Lantz, was on probation when the incidents happened in September.  Lycoming County Judge Richard Gray handed down that sentence to Lantz yesterday in Lycoming county Court.
(WGRC)

MAHANOY CITY – A prisoner at the state prison in Mahanoy City is being charged with aggravated assault and related charges after stabbing another inmate 17 times with a hand-made weapon. 30-year-old Nathaniel Clark is being charged for the incident on May 18th at the prison. State Police say he was caught on video surveillance with the unprovoked attack on the other prisoner.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

MAHANOY CITY – A prisoner at the State Prison at Mahanoy City is being charged with manufacturing a weapon out of a hair brush. 24-year-old Marcello Manzon was charged by state police with making the weapon in May. Police say prison guards search Monzon’s cell and found the seven-and-a-half inch weapon.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

SCHUYLKILL HAVEN – Police in Schuylkill County are looking for an Allentown man wanted for passing a fake $50 bill. Troopers say 32-year-old Jefferies Bernabe tried to pass off the fake bill at the Rita’s Italian Ice stand along Route 61 in Schuylkill Haven last night around 8:30. Police say Bernabe fled after shop personnel refused to take the fake bill. Police say Bernabe is also wanted in Monroe and Lehigh Counties for similar incident where he tried to pass off fake bills. Anyone with knowledge of his whereabouts is asked to call state police.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

BLOOMSBURG - A Bloomsburg University professor moving a chemical from one container to another around 10:30 Monday morning accidentally ignited a fire, causing Hartline Science Center to be evacuated. The Press Enterprise reports, the fire was quickly doused. However, everyone was ordered out of the building and Bloomsburg firefighters were called to the scene as a precaution.
(WGRC)

BELLEFONTE – In Centre County a Benner Township home was damaged Sunday when flames ripped through the single-story home at 1401 Seibert Road. The home, owned by Randall Moyer, was vacant at the time. No injuries were reported in the blaze, which was called in just before noon. The cause of the fire has not been determined, but officials say it was not arson. A state police fire marshal was called to investigate. Damage to the home is estimated at $100,000.
(WGRC)

MIFFLINBURG – The Route 45 roadway project through Mifflinburg in Union County will open the first reconstructed section to traffic today, and close the next section as well. The first reconstructed section of Route 45 is from Fifth Street to Eighth Street and the next section to be worked on is from Third Street through Fifth Street. Traffic will have access to Third Street but not Fifth Street from Route 45 during this phase of construction. Both the car and truck detours will remain the same.
(WGRC)

MIFFLINTOWN - The final phase of the construction is underway on the new pedestrian bridge spanning the Juniata River, which will link the boroughs of Mifflin and Mifflintown. The new pedestrian bridge will be located in the same spot of the former state Route 35 Bridge, which was dismantled in April. As part of the project, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has modified the traffic pattern at the intersection of Bridge and Main streets in Mifflintown. Workers have been drilling to set four piers in place for the pedestrian bridge spanning the Juniata River between Mifflin and Mifflintown. The $16 million state Route 35 River Bridge project began in the summer of 2011, and the new river bridge located slightly downriver from the original, opened to traffic in December.
(WGRC)

MONTOURSVILLE - Legislation to officially name a Lycoming County bridge was approved Monday in the state Senate and now goes to the Governor for his signature. House Bill 987, sponsored by state Representative Garth Everett, would designate the bridge carrying Route 973 over the Loyalsock Creek in Upper Fairfield and Eldred townships, as the George E. Logue Sr. Memorial Bridge. Logue was a known engineering innovator who was contracted by the U.S. Navy to develop a remotely controlled surface and subsurface vehicle. The Sun Gazette reports, he also was known for his efforts to memorialize the crew of World War II submarine, the USS Wahoo, which was lost in 1943 in the Sea of Japan. His brother, Robert, was a crew member on the submarine. George Logue Sr. passed away last October.
(WGRC)

LOCK HAVEN –In Clinton County the skies will be buzzing with the familiar sounds of the bright yellow aircrafts Clinton County is famous for.  The 28th annual "Sentimental Journey" will zoom into the William T. Piper Airport in Lock Haven tomorrow. The annual event celebrating the Piper Cub planes which were once built in Lock Haven has people from all over flying into the airport for a reunion of sorts. Folks come to Clinton County from California, Florida, the United Kingdom, and everywhere in between. The theme for this year's event is "Celebrating the Super Cub," and the featured plane is the PA-18 Super Cub.
(WGRC)

SELINSGROVE - More than 50 cadets marched onto the Susquehanna University football practice field and stood at attention while Milton state trooper Matt Burrows explained the importance of self-discipline. In its eighth year, Camp Cadet teaches young people between the ages of eleven and 15-years-old the importance of respect, self-discipline, and team work. The Daily Item reports, yesterday cadets got an eye popping experience as a state police helicopter and a LifeFlight helicopter both landed on the practice field for cadets to check out.
(WGRC)

JERSEY SHORE - The fate of an elementary school was decided Monday night in Lycoming County. The Jersey Shore School Board decided that Nippenose Valley Elementary School will close. The School near Jersey shore will close and nearly 200 students will be sent to other schools in the district. In February 2012 the District had choose to keep Nippenose Valley open along with Avis Elementary School. It appears that eventually all outlying schools may close and students will be house in the Jersey Shore elementary School which is undergoing renovations. Grade levels will also be shifted to accommodate classes.
(WGRC)

MIDDLEBURG - Two girls from our area will help represent Pennsylvania in a rodeo competition next week in New Mexico. The girls will rope cattle, tie up goats and race their horses around barrels in the National Junior High Rodeo Competition. Rebecca Haines of Mifflinburg and Keariana Lauver of Middleburg will be heading to New Mexico for the event. They qualified for the national competition at a Pennsylvania state competition over the weekend. While Keariana races around the barrels, Rebecca will rope cattle. Both girls will compete in the goat tying event.
(WNEP)

UNIVERSITY PARK - More than 325 former Penn State football players and coaches spanning six decades are voicing their support for a May 30th lawsuit aimed at ending the NCAA sanctions against the university in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal. In a letter sent Monday by letterman Brian Masella, the players and coaches have signed a statement backing the lawsuit that wants a judge to void the sanctions that include a $60 million fine, a bowl ban and scholarship reductions. The Centre daily Times reports, the lawsuit’s plaintiffs include the family of the late Joe Paterno as well as some trustees, faculty members, former coaches and former players. They say the NCAA ignored its own rules when it levied the penalties against Penn State after former FBI director Louis Freeh’s investigation.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT - More than $235,000 in grants from the Lycoming County Visitors Bureau is heading to three city tourist destinations. The Sun Gazette reports, the visitors bureau has committed $100,000 for improvements at city-owned Bowman Field, another $100,000 for improvements to Preservation Williamsport's Rowley House at 707 W. Fourth St. and $37,500 for the Hiawatha paddle wheel riverboat. Bowman field will use the money for more seating behind the third base area of the filed. The Rowley house will use its money for a new roof. And the Hiawatha will use their grant to purchase new engines for the paddle boat and bring it up to U.S. Coast Guard standards.
(WGRC)

HERSHEY - Penn State College of Medicine has been awarded a prestigious $1 million grant by the American Medical Association as part of a program aimed at transforming the way the physicians of tomorrow are trained. Penn State College of Medicine is one of just 11 medical schools across the United States – and the only school in Pennsylvania – to receive a grant. The $1 million grant awarded to Penn State College of Medicine will be administered over five years. It will be used to create a new component in the medical education curriculum called Systems Based Learning in which students will serve as patient navigators. This will allow them to serve patients in a meaningful way during their education, preparing them to work within all aspects of the nation’s evolving health care system. These include hospital, home, skilled nursing, and community and social agencies.
(WGRC)

ALLENTOWN – PPL Electric Utilities says they have met or exceeded targets in first phase of energy efficiency programs. In the first phase of E-power® programs developed as part of the state’s energy efficiency and conservation law known as Act 129, the utility’s customers achieved a 3 percent  reduction in electric consumption required by May 31st. Government, nonprofit and educational customers reached 10 percent in reductions. In addition, the utility reached its 4.5 percent peak load reduction target in the summer of 2012. The power company says phase two of the energy efficiency program is underway. Some programs, such as appliance recycling and discounted residential lighting, will continue in phase two, which runs until May 31st, 2016. LED light bulbs will play a more prominent role in the second phase. The utility will continue to offer programs such as rebates for certain home appliances, residential HVAC, commercial lighting and HVAC, custom incentives for commercial customers, and weatherization and energy education for income-eligible customers. New programs include a Home Comfort Program for both new and existing homes, equipment rebates focused on the agricultural community, and a program to aid owners of certain master-metered multi-unit apartment buildings.
(WGRC)

HARRISBURG - State Representative Garth Everitt of Lycoming County, lauded an 11-year-old Muncy girl yesterday for he efforts with a bow and arrow on the house floor yesterday in Harrisburg. Emalee Lunger was presented a house citation by Everitt for her score of 527 out of a possible 600 at the annual Pennsylvania State Indoor Archery competition held back in March at the Pennsylvania State Farm Show building in Harrisburg. And Emalee is not the only one in her family good with a bow and arrow, next week she along with her parents and two siblings will be competing in the Pennsylvania State Outdoor Archery Championship competitions.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

HARRISBURG - Governor Tom Corbett signed into law Monday a measure to protect Pennsylvania tax dollars from being spent on abortion. House Bill 818, which passed the state house in April and Senate on June 5, ensures that Pennsylvania opts out of elective abortion coverage in the state health insurance exchange created through the affordable care act, commonly known as Obamacare. The affordable care act includes a provision allowing states to opt-out of abortion coverage in the health insurance exchanges. Pennsylvania joins more than 30 other states that have, or are in the process of, enacting opt-out legislation. House Bill 818 includes exceptions for rape, incest, and the life of the mother, which are the same exceptions that apply to Medicaid funding of abortion in Pennsylvania. Therefore, the bill is in line with state law and the U.S. constitution.
(WGRC)

PHILADELPHIA - U.S. Sen. Bob Casey is calling for legislation to prevent an interest rate increase on federally subsidized student loans. The current interest rate on Stafford loans is nearly 3.4 percent, and it’s set to double July 1st. Democrat and Republican bills to stop the rate increase failed to get enough votes to pass the Senate in early June. Casey says Congress should draft a new bill that has bipartisan backing. The Associated Press reports, the office of Republican Senator Pat Toomey says the interest rate increase would amount to only few dollars a month, and that the focus should be on the economy and on the rising cost of education in general.
(WGRC)