Archives for September 2016

Altoona Teen Arrested After Deadly Shooting

Altoona Police are blaming a deadly shooting this morning on a “leather mixture of drugs, guns, and carelessness.” Investigators say 19-year-old Michael Corle accidentally shot and killed a friend early this morning in the 1600 block of Second Avenue. The name of the 19-year-old victim, who was shot in the head with a .357 magnum revolver, was being withheld pending notification of relatives. The shooting occurred at about 4 a.m. and Corle was taken into custody at his mother’s home on 5th Avenue three hours later. The gun was buried near Pleasant Valley Elementary School. Investigators say they had to use a metal detector to find the weapon.

AUTOMATED VEHICLE TEST IN STATE CAPITOL PASSES WITH NO ISSUES

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, the Capitol City of Harrisburg, and Carnegie Mellon University on Wednesday, highlighted safety and technology advances by conducting an Automated Vehicle demonstration at the Capitol in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Safety Symposium. Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse…

Deputy Secretary For Driver and Vehicle Services Kurt J Myers also was there…

OPIOID ABUSE AWARENESS SHARPENED

Legislation to create a new opioid awareness program for students in middle and high school was approved unanimously by the state Senate and is now headed to the House of Representatives for consideration. The bill’s sponsor was Senator John Wozniak of Cambria, Bedford and Clearfield counties. Wozniak’s proposal would require the Department of Education in consultation with the state departments of health and drug and alcohol programs to craft an opioid awareness curriculum for public and private schools. The program is targeted to students in grades six through 12. It’s part of a legislative package to address opioid abuse. Wozniak is vice-chair of the Center for Rural Pennsylvania. He has been heavily involved in the issue for several years and has joined with the center’s chair, Senator Gene Yaw of Lycoming County, to spearhead several legislative initiatives to address opioid abuse. The center has conducted 11 statewide hearing on opioids and heroin abuse.

RESIDENTS TURN OUT FOR SINGLE HAULER MEETING

About 80 residents turned out last evening, with both support and opposition to plans to possibly contract with a single trash hauler for all residential garbage and recycling pickups in Hollidaysburg. A meeting Wednesday night was held in the auditorium of Hollidaysburg Area High School, and those who turned out were vocal on behalf of both sides of the issue. Most were opposed to the plan, saying it was a move away from a free-market system which allows everyone to pick whoever they want to pick up their trash. One person called it a misdirected idea. That person was Michael Routch, who is also an attorney representing local haulers. John Frederick… the executive director of the Intermunicipal Relations Committee which oversees recycling in several Blair County communities, including Hollidaysburg, countered… saying there are many reasons to contract a single hauler. Frederick cited what he called a large amount of illegal dumping, along with trash accumulation by some residents without any hauler. Frederick said it translates into potentially serious health and safety issues, and could indeed, lead to problems with recycling compliance, which is mandated by law. Those in favor, say a single hauler system would cut collection costs and include regular recycling, bulky waste and specialty pickups… while at the same time… cutting back on traffic and air pollution. It could also mean lower rates for residents…. as much as 20 to 30 percent. To award a contact, council would have to put it out to bid… a process that some said could put some smaller haulers out of business.

HOLLIDAYSBURG SETS MEETING TO FOCUS ON SINGLE HAULER

In Hollidaysburg this week, a public meeting will focus on the possibility of contracting with a single trash hauler. The meeting is set for Wednesday at 6pm, at the Hollidaysburg Area High School. If approved, it would mean a big change from the current system, which allows residents to choose their own haulers. The whole thing first came up at a Borough Council meeting back in March. It was tossed around again in July. Borough officials have circulated fliers to property owners to explain how it would work. They say a single hauler system would bring big improvements to areas that are currently struggling wtih recycling… which is now required by law. They also say a single-hauler system would cut costs over the current system, which is made up of six to 10 companies crisscrossing through the borough… and is considered to be inefficient and expensive. In fact, some say costs could drop by as much as 20 to 30 percent. There would also be less truck traffic and air pollution. Residents would, under the proposed plan, be billed for their trash collection by the borough…. not by individual companies. Haulers would bid competitively for the municipal contract. Each resident would be required to have a trash hauler, and could face penalties for violations.

CNN POLLS SHOW TIGHT RACE IN PENNSYLVANIA

With the first debate between the two presidential candidates set for tonight, CNN has just this morning released results of a poll, showing that here in Pennsylvania, just one point now separates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. As of this morning, CNN said that Hillary Clinton’s previously large lead over Trump in Pennsylvania is now down to just one percentage point… 45 percent for Clinton, and 44 percent for Trump. Results of the new CNN poll also show that in another key battleground state… Colorado… Trump is one point ahead of Clinton, with Trump having 42 percent, and Clinton showing 41 percent. Both are well within each poll’s 3.5-point margin of error. The two polls mirror tight national polls and neck-and-neck poll results in several other key battleground states including Ohio, Florida, Nevada and North Carolina. In both Colorado and Pennsylvania, the economy is far and away the top voter concern. Terrorism, illegal immigration and foreign policy are also big factors, and Trump comes out on top in both states with potential voters on those issues. Clinton lags far behind Trump when voters are asked which of the two is more honest and trustworthy.

Man Attacked by Woman Wielding Machete

Charges have been filed against an Altoona woman who allegedly assaulted her mother’s boyfriend with a machete and a hacksaw. Police say 30-year-old Ebony Corbett broke into her mother’s home at Evergreen Manors Tuesday night by crawling thru a window after removing an air conditioning unit. Once inside, she allegedly lunged at the man and slashed him. He was not seriously injured, but needed stitches for what were described as defensive wounds. Corbett was arrested without incident and faces multiple charges including assault, reckless endangerment and burglary. She was taken to UPMC Altoona for a mental health evaluation.

AG ANNOUNCES SUCCESS OF MOBILE STREET CRIMES UNIT

Attorney General Bruce Beemer announced the results of a successful fourth deployment for the Office of Attorney General’s Mobile Street Crimes Unit, which has spent the last six months working in an undercover capacity in Beaver County….

Beaver County District Attorney David Lozier also commented…

UPMC FILES SUIT

UPMC has filed suit against a Cleveland firm, alleging that an actuarial employee “vastly” understated the pension liability of UPMC Altoona. In the suit, UPMC says it never would have acquired the former Altoona Regional Health System back in 2013 if it had been made aware of the local hospital’s full liability. At that time, it added up to about $123 million more than what was stated in pension documents. UPMC claims in it’s suit, that the pension obligation was listed at $240 million, when in fact, it was then $373 million… or understated by approximately $132.5 million. The lawsuit charges professional negligence, breach of contract and negligent misrepresentation, and asks for $142 million in damages, plus punitive damages.

VIRGINIA MAN ACQUITTED ON FIREARMS CHARGE IN BLAIR COURT

A Virginia man, who was in a vehicle when Altoona police pulled it over in a drug investigation and found a loaded handgun in the car, has been acquitted on two firearm possession charges. 45 year old Robert Stanley told a Blair County jury that he knew nothing about the loaded handgun that turned up in the car he was a passenger in. It all happened in the early morning hours of Oct. 5, 2013, when Altoona police officers… investigating drug-related activity… pulled over a vehicle driven by Dashawn Badie of Pittsburgh in which Stanley was a front seat passenger. Badie was also charged because of that traffic stop. He went to jail after pleading guilty to illegal possession of a firearm.