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You are here: brctv13.com Local News

BRCTV-13 News Archive

July 22, 2014

Shafers Schoolhouse Rd. at the underpass of I-80 has been closed for a few weeks now, but some drivers are growing more and more frustrated with the detours.
Some decided to reopen the road themselves to make life easier, which officials say is against the law.
Barricades are back up and officials are hoping these will keep them drivers out. The road is expected to reopen before school starts.

July 22, 2014

Monroe County now has a Latino Countywide Services Partnership. It's in response to better serve the growing Latino community in the Poconos. The Federation of Latinos for Education about the Cultures of Hispanic America or "FLECHA" has secured funding from Monroe County's Grant Office and support from Catholic Social Services to reliably serve the hispanic population.
Now Spainish-speaking people and their families can come to one location at Penn Square Office Park in Stroudsburg to get all the information and referrals they need. The over $27,000 grant provides a part-time bilingual case worker to help hispanics comfortably address any issues they may have with available resources.
For more information or to make an appointment just call 570-517-0892 Monday through Friday.

July 22, 2014

Slatington Police are investigating what appears to be a robbery at a laundromat in town. Sunday evening police were called to the business for a reported stabbing and robbery. They found a woman bleeding from the head. Further investigation shows the woman was not stabbed, but may have hit her head. The victim was treated at the hospital. Police believe she's already been released. Officers are now treating the case as a robbery and are following leads at this time.

July 22, 2014

A Jim Thorpe man faces multiple charges after fleeing from police on an ATV last week in the borough. State Police say they were helping Jim Thorpe Officers with an aggressive driver detail on Wednesday when they spotted 34-year-old Derrick Feller riding an ATV down Center Street. Troopers had to perform an "induced stop" on Reservoir Road to keep Feller from fleeing further. When he was told to get off the vehicle, he allegedly put the ATV into reverse to flee again. Feller was then tasered but still resisted arrest. Once he was taken into custody, officers found a concealed loaded pistol, a small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia on Feller. He's been charged with numerous offenses.

July 21, 2014

Residents of Price Township Community have been using an access road to Alpine Mountain Ski Resort as a short cut to Route 447 for years.
Now there's a new owner of the ski area and that access road has been blocked off.
Residents at Timber Hill Community want the road back open.
The owner plans to meet with the Timber Hill Community Association Friday. He's hoping they can reach a solution.

July 21, 2014

It's about the irritating traffic backup that happens at the intersection at 715 and Sullivan Trail near The Crossings Outlets in Tannersville. A right turn signal is now in place to Kim Markou's delight. Back in March we reported the Pocono Township Resident created a handmade sign and posted it telling people they could turn right on red. Markou was fed up with people not abiding by the Pennsylvania law and the traffic backup that ensued because of it. She requested official signage be posted reminding people they can turn right on red, but this new signal provides more than just a quick fix.
District Five Press Officer Ron Young of PennDOT says,"Do that movement in a protected set-up, meaning all the other traffic movements that would conflict with what they're doing will be stopped, while they have they right turn arrow."
At the intersection today we witnessed a constant flow of traffic. PennDOT offficials tell us the traffic signal modification is a result of the new Monroe Northampton Community College Campus. The campus needed access to the state road so they got a permit throught PennDOT. Young says, "As part of that, they have to regulate any traffic that they generate, regulate the community impact that traffic generates on the roadway system."
People we talked to today agree with Markou that they couldn't be happier.

July 18, 2014

A representative from the Monroe County Conservation Districrt is taking heat for a comment he made involving the Kalahari Resort, currently under construction.
Back in January, the Conservation District Manager, Craig Todd said that Kalahari had their pants down, which has caused all the fuss. He was talking about two pollution violations.
"What that meant was they had a lot of ground exposed, but didn't have their controls in to prohibit sediment pollution from the swiftwater creek," said Todd.
Now board members are working on a new policy that will change how information is released to the public.
What the conservation board will decide for the new policy in unknown. As for Kalahari, Todd says violations have been corrected.

July 18, 2014

A forest pest known as the Gypsy Moth may be coming back in full force next year. People are seeing them in their yards now and are concered. And they shouldn't be ignored because they can cause a great deal of damage to your entire property, including losing trees completely as time goes by. Right now, they're making their egg masses that are going to be hatching in the Spring. The caterpillars that come out are going to eat the trees. Co-Owner of Pocono Tick and Skeeter Control Jacqui Hakim says a full-size Gypsy Moth Caterpillar can eat one-square-foot of leaf surface a day.
While PA DCNR District Forester Tim Dugan confirms many have died off from a natural bacteria and fungus, the few dry spells we've experienced allowed a portion of the population to live. Dugan says the Bureau of Forestry is monitoring it right now and they've noticed next year Gypsy Moths may be a huge problem.
Dugan says, "The indications are that we may have a spray program next year if the budget and funds are available."
Hakim says there's nothing to do now except to look around your yard for the brown splotches of eggs on trees to know whether or not you'll have a problem in the spring. If you see a lot, Hakim recommends to get in contact with a sprayer. She says the state has a list available. Just call 570-875-6450.

July 17, 2014

Dein Properties Officials can't wait to transform the biggest eyesore on Main Street in Stroudsburg into a brand new five-story brick building that will fit-in with the rest of the downtown area. General Manager George Strunk says the first floor will be upscale retail and the second through fifth will be office space and residential apartments. Strunk says the company bought the former Carlton House on Eighth and Main Streets about two years ago with that goal in mind. The property has been condemned since a 2009 fire.
Demolition is expected to start within the next few weeks. Strunk says parts of Eighth Street will be closed from time to time, but doesn't expect Main Street to be affected.

July 17, 2014

Penn Dot will be closing parts of woodale rd. next week to fix one of the many bridges in need of repair.
Penn Dot Maintenance Manager, Bob Mudrick says they have to fix the beams, pour concrete, rebar and put a new deck on it. The open grate bridge currently has weight restrictions.
Mudrick says, there are other bridges they hope to finish by this summer as well.
One on Silver Springs Blvd on the west end and Traffic Route 715 from tannersville to 115.
In order to fix those roads, Mudrick says they have to get into the creek. During the summer he says the creeks are much lowe, but the weather hasn't been cooperating this year. They can't begin until the water goes down.
Construction on the Woodale Rd. Bridge will begin Monday. They're hoping to have it done before school starts.

July 16, 2014

The building of Resica Community Playground in Monroe County is halted due to a lack of funding. Last month volunteers tore down the playground behind Resica Elementary School in Middle Smithfield Township because it was considered unsafe. A newer and safer one was supposed to be built in its place last week, but Volunteer Karen Conway says a counted on $30,000 donation didn't come through from East Stroudsburg School District. That's because the project on school grounds actually needed to be put out to bid under the Pennsylvania School Code.
Volunteers have already raised most of the $130,000 the project needs through grants, fundraisers and the community. They just need your help for the rest. If you would like to donate, there's a Go Fund Me webpage set up for Resica Community Playground and for more information on upcoming fundraisers or how to get involved, just call Conway at 570-807-0602. The playground is expected to be built late August and more volunteers are needed.

July 15, 2014

The Valor Veteran's Clinic is bringing the Jonas hotel back to life. The structure has been vacant for years, but organizers plan to put it to good use,housing at least 13 veterans.
It needs quite a bit of work, but with a few helping hands, organizers says it's nothing they can't handle.
Volunteers will be cleaning up for the rest of the week from 9 in the mornign to 6 in the evening.
They're looking for carpenters, masons and anyone to donate cement or gravel. Contact the Valor clinic if you would like to help.

July 15, 2014

The first case of West Nile Virus is discovered in Monroe County. Vector Control Officials say a mosquito sample from Middle Smithfield Township recently tested positive.
Coordinator Michael Pula says, "We had our first positive mosquito pull come in. It was reported yesterday at 7:14. It was collected at the Winona Lakes Sewage Treatment Plant in Middle Smithfield Township."
So far there are no human cases of West Nile in Pennsylvania this year. Vector Control Officials say the mosquito population isn't as bad this year. But with all the recent excessive rainfall, there's a greater risk for more. Vector Control takes a proactive approach and tries to treat breeding areas before the mosquito larva become adults. And you can help by ridding your property of collected rainfall. Mosquitos breed in standing water.

July 15, 2014

After being in the works for five years, Lehighton State Police have a new home. Dozens turned out today for the grand opening ceremony of the new Lehighton Barraks on Interchange Road in Towamensing Township. Among those present were State Senator John Yudichak and State Representative Doyle Heffley. PA State Police Commissioner, Frank Noonan, thanked troopers for keeping the community safe. The new facility has twice the room as the old one and features a state of the art computer system.

July 15, 2014

The Historic Century old Pond Eddy Bridge is up for grabs to the highest bidder. Penn Dot needs to replace the current bridge for safety reasons, and will offer potential buyers the opportunity to bid on the bridge and preserve it at a new location. Penn Dot says they will move the bridge at no cost, but its the buyers job to maintain it. Anyone interested in purchasing the historic landmark needs to submit a bid to Penn Dot by September 5, 2014.

July 14, 2014

Last night's storm left quite a bit of damage in parts of Stroudsburg.
Many trees came down, landing on roadways, vehicles and even powerlines.
A number of roads were closed, south of Stroudsburg.
The American Red Cross is usually giving help, but today local contractors offered a helping hand, after a tree fell on one of their disaster trailers.
Most of the damage has been cleaned up and roadways are back open. Officials say they're prepared for more possible storm damage tonight or tomorrow.

July 14, 2014

An apparent murder-suicide in Banks Township is bringing to light a serious problem in our community, domestic violence. Paula Triano is the Executive Director for the Domestic Violence Service Center in Wilkes-Barre. The center offers help to victims in Luzerne and Carbon counties. She says there are many reasons why victims don't leave an abusive situation. Such as, to protect children involved or lack of money, but she reminds victims there's help. If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse call the hotline 1-800-424-5600. You can make an anonymous call and callers are never forced to take a plan of action.

July 11, 2014

The State Attorney General's Office is cracking down on heroin users.
A recent investigation led to the arrest of two people in East Stroudsburg, distributing several packets of heroin.
Officials from the Attorney General's Office say Pennsylavania has the third highest number of heroin users, behind California and Illinois, with an average of 40,000 users.
To fight this epidemic she says they're actively collaborating with county, state, federal and local law enforcement partners.

July 11, 2014

Swimming is allowed just in time for the weekend at Beltzville State Park in Carbon County. The beach at the lake was closed on Wednesday after tests showed high bacteria counts in the water. This afternoon state officials say it's back open. Water samples from July 10th came back with acceptable bacterial counts.

July 11, 2014

Harmony is restored at a popular concert venue in Carbon County. Noise complaints against the Mauch Chunk Opera House are costing the concert venue thousands of dollars in fines. Opera house officials and neighbors of the venue say they have reached an agreement in a closed door meeting this week. The owners will continue to soundproof the concert venue and neighbors say they will refrain from calling the Bureau of Liquor Enforcement at this time. Both parties plan to meet again in the near future.

July 11, 2014

Debra Elmire never imagined her littlle request would turn into a big 19 year project.
"One day I was sitting looking out my back window and I said, "Honey, wouldn't a little stone wall look very nice over there?"
Stone upon stone has been stacked into the now 1,000 foot wall that stretches around the Elmire's two acre property in Reeders. Love, memories and a lot of local history has gone into building the wall. There's even a time capsule hidden inside the wall. Builder Howard Elmire says there's only a day's work left with about five feet left to cover with stones. The Elmire family just hopes other people will get to enjoy the wall someday as much as they have, and their memories will live on.

July 10, 2014

A Schuykill County couple is counting their blessings after fire rips through two storage sheds on their property. The fire happened last night on a property on Rabbit Run Rd in West Penn Township. One of the homeowners reported hearing a loud blast, like an explosion, around 9:30PM. He believes lightning started the blaze that leveled two storage sheds just yards away from his home. Firefighters managed to get the blaze under control quickly. No reported injuries in that West Penn Township Blaze.

July 10, 2014

A chain reaction crash in the Carbon Plaza Mall parking lot leaves five cars damaged. Mahoning Township Police say 93-year-old Angela Ouly of Nesquehoning driving a red neon, made an illegal left turn into the mall parking lot. She then traveled at an excessive speed through the parking lot and hit a shopping cart pushed by a pregnant woman who fell out of the way. The Neon then struck two unoccupied parked cars. One of those cars then hit another car with two people inside. The shopping cart ran into a fifth vehicle. The pregnant woman was taken to the hospital. No one else was injured. Police say Ouly will be cited for careless driving among other charges.

July 10, 2014

Resident 63-year-old Darlene Bancey of Lakewood Personal Care Home was discovered this morning around 5:40 submerged in the facility's lake. Coroner Bob Allen says about 40 feet from the shoreline. Northeast PA Search and Rescue were called to assist in locating her at 10:51 Wedneday night after the facility on Cherry Lane Road in Stroud Township reported Bancey missing. The 15 member crew, along with dogs found her after an overnight search. Allen pronounced her dead at the scene. Bancey has been a resident of the personal care home for the past year. It's not a locked facility and residents are allowed to come and go as they please. Officials say Bancey was on prescribed medications for her medical and psychiatric conditions before she left. The facility is licensed by the PA Department of Welfare to provide personal care. Our calls to the bureau went unanswered. A forensic autpsy is scheduled for tomorrow at Lehigh Valley Hospital to determine the exact cause of death.

July 10, 2014

Drivers will be taking detours around Shafers Schoolhouse Rd. for the next six weeks at the underpass of I-80.
The area has been closed off for a week already and some motorists say the closure is an inconvinence.
Sean Brown from Penn Dot says they found movement in one of the wing walls, used to stabilize the bridge. He's worried the wing wall could collapse onto the roadway.
Traffic over the interstate bridge has not been affected. Brown says the bridge is stable and there's no risk of it collapsing.
Brown says it should take about 6 weeks for steel to arrive for them to make the repairs.


July 9, 2014

Four East Stroudsburg University Officials were soaked in ice water today for a social media challenge, growing popular around the nation in colleges and universities.
Northhampton Community College President, Mark Erickson, challenged ESU president, Marcia Welsh to participate in "chillin for charity', a cold water challenge that raises money for cancer research through the Kay Yow Foundation.
Once the videos are recorded the challenger has to post it on youtube within 48 hours. Welsh recruited three others to be soaked in ice water with her.
If the person challenged doesn't get water dumped on them within 48 hours Welsh says, they're required to donate at least $200. If they do, like ESU Officials they donate $50.

July 9, 2014

A rescue dog inspires a family to start a new business in Carbon County. It's called "Stray Dog Candles & Stuff." The Hill family, of Lehighton, recently adopted "Butchie" from a shelter. Just like they gave him a new home, they're giving old wine bottles and corks new life. The corks are turned into decorations and old wine bottles are upcycled and filled with soy candles. The candles feature their original labels, but sometimes the Hills encounter bottles with unsalvageable labels. In that case, they use one of their own "Recue Dog" labels. A portion of the proceeds from sales of those products will benefit our local animal shelters.

July 9, 2014

Pocono Mountain Regional Police Chief Harry Lewis now knows the department will be in good hands. Lewis is set to retire August 8th after 21 years of service, 6 years as chief.
Last night the Police Commission majority appointed Lieutenant Christopher Wagner as interm chief until a permanent one is selected.

July 8, 2014

Noise complaints are costing a well-know concert venue thousands of dollars in fines. Owners of the Mauch Chunk Opera House recently purchased a liquor license. Since then, they've been subjected to the state's noise ordinance, which says a business can be cited if noise is heard off the property. State Representative Doyle Heffley visited the opera house today. He'd like to propose legislation to exempt historic districts from the noise regulation under the Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement. Owners tell us they're trying to comply and have spent over $20,000 on sound proofing the building.

July 8, 2014

Ross Township residents living on Owl Hollow Drive want to know what's planned. Recently they've noticed construction taking place on their road but weren't informed. They tried calling the township but couldn't get a striaght answer. That's why they showed up to the township meeting last night. The supervisors say they just want to pave the road like they're supposed to. But the shoulders being pushed back matter to the residents. We stopped by Lori Smith's house today and she showed us pictures of what previous paving did to her property in 1994. You can see more dug out on her side in the pictures and she's not the only one wanting it to change this time around. Smith says moving the center line back to where it's supposed to be would help fix the problem. Residents also just want it done right. They say there's already a drainage problem and the township isn't addressing it with the repaving. Ross Township Officials tell us they have agreed to have an engineer look at the situation. And they will be paving the road, but no wider than the 20 feet that it is, with the average two feet shoulder on each side.

July 8, 2014

Stroud Area Regional Police Officer, Ruben Torres passed away yesterday morning, after a 3 month battle with cancer.
Fellow officers, family and people in the community celebrated his life at Big Daddy's in Bartonsville from 11am-9pm.
A number of items donated from local business were raffled off to raise money and give thanks to the community for all of theh support.
50% of today's proceeds will go to the family.

July 8, 2014

Construction on Interstate 84 started only a few months ago, but the number of traffic tickets that have been handed out may shock you. Penn Dot say over one-thousand tickets have been issued to drivers during that short span. Penn Dot says the construction on 84 will be ongoing for years, and don't expect the entire rebuild to be completed until August 2016. They are urge drivers to please remain patient and slow down while driving in the construction zones.

July 7, 2014

Officials say a woman was reportedly bitten by a venomous snake at the Glen Onoko falls in Jim Thorpe over the weekend. The call came in just after eight, Saturday evening. It took crews about two hours to rescue the woman from the top of the falls. She was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital. No word on her name or condition at this time.

July 7, 2014

A weekend fire at a building on Main Street in Stroudsburg leaves 21 people homeless and closes three businesses. Fire officials tell us the fire started around 2:30 Sunday morning and have determined the flames originated from business Kitchen Chemistry's stand alone air conditioning unit.

July 7, 2014

Swiftwater State Police are on the lookout for copper thieves.
Officials say, Alpine Mountain Ski Resort has been targeted at least five times over the last three weeks.
Kevin Fabiano purchased the ski resort earlier this year, after being on the market for about two years.
Fabiano says they're currently renovating to bring the resort back to life. Now they have to fix what's vandalized on top of that.
Fabiano says about a miles worth of copper wiring has been stolen and there's about $100,000 worth of property damage, including wiring to operate lifts and snow making equipment.
The perpetrators even hot wired a backhoe to remove a PPL transformer on the property. Then they used a torch to cut out a hole looking for more wire.

July 7, 2014

State Police are looking for a Tamaqua man they say tried to get money for stolen goods. One June 26th, Troopers say 26-year-old Nathan Fritz brought stolen property to J.W. Zaprazny Inc., in East Brunswick Township, to be recycled for cash. The metal that Fritz had was allegedly stolen drainage grates from roadways in East Brunswick and Walker Townships. Criminal charges have been filed, and an arrest warrant has been issued for Fritz. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact State Police at Frackville.

July 7, 2014

Emergency teams responded to a potential drowning at Beltzville Lake on Saturday night. An un-named woman was pulled from the lake's designated swimming area and given CPR by medical officials.
She was then rushed to Blue Mountain Health System's Gnaden Hutten campus for further treatment. Much information is still unknown at the time.

July 7, 2014

Police say a Mahoning Township man may have been driving under the influence when he crashed his car yesterday seriously injuring a passenger. The accident happened around 5:30 am on Orioles Drive. Mahoning Township Police say Pasquale Verrastro Junior was speeding when his car went off the road and hit a tree. A Louisiana man was in the passenger seat and was trapped in the wreckage with major injuries. Lehighton Fire Fighters worked for about an hour to free the man. He was then flown to the hospital. Police say charges against Verrastro are pending the results of a blood test.

July 7, 2014

A Schuylkill County man's body is found inside a burning home Sunday. Officials say there were no working smoke detectors in the victim's house. Fire fighters were called to a working structure fire with possible entrapment around 2:45 yesterday morning. When they got to the scene in Cass Township, heavy flames were coming from the home at 33 South Maple Avenue. Rescue crews were unable to get to 65-year-old Richard Dermo. His cause of death is still being investigated at this time. A next door neighbor was able to escape. The home at 35 South Maple Avenue sustained heavy smoke and water damage.

July 2, 2014

A Palmerton man has died from injuries he sustained in a car crash several weeks ago in North Whitehall Township. The Lehigh County Coroner says 76-year-old Joseph Ebeley was pronounced dead early this morning at Lehigh Valley Hospital. Ebeley was a passenger in a car that crashed on June 12th on Route 145. His death has been ruled an accident.

July 2, 2014

The beach at Beltzville State Park is closed again. State officials say tests from June 30th showed high bacteria counts in the water. The swim area was closed this morning. As a precaution, the beach will remain closed until acceptable water samples come back. Other activities at the park are continuing as normal including boating and fishing.

July 2, 2014

Stroud Area Regional Police are looking for 21-year-old Stroudsburg Resident Aaron Hernandez. They believe he stabbed an 18-year-old in the lower right abdomen, which caused a laceration to the victim's liver last night just before six outside Stroud Mall's Food Court. Captain Brian Kimmins says the incident between the two men started inside verbally over a female and escalated outside. The suspect is described as 5'8, 150 pounds with brown eyes and black hair.
Kimmins says mall security was first on the scene and were great. He wants people to be alert these things can happen anywhere at any time.
Hernandez is facing aggravated assault and other charges. Stroud Area Regional Police are asking you to contact them with any information on Hernandez's whereabouts.

July 1, 2014

Neighbors on Flyte Road in Ross Township can't believe a property they called a dump is finally completely cleaned-up.
It was formerly owned by Rockne Newell who is currently in jail. Police say Newell opened fire at a Ross Township Supervisor meeting last August, killing three people and injuring others. The shooting occurred a few days after Newell's condemned property was bought at a sheriff sale by the township. Newell fought the township for several years over cleaning it up.
Ross Township officials estimate the clean up took about 10 days and surrounding neighbors are impressed. They say it's like Newell was never there. His two buildings and a culvert pipe bridge have also been demolished.
Township Supervisor Howard Beers Jr. says they voted to hire Papillion Contracting in Stroudsburg for the project and it cost the township $11,500. Beers says it's free of garbage and says the township will strive to keep it that way from now on. He says the property will simply remain open space in the future. And there will be consequences for anyone caught dumping there like any other property.

July 1, 2014

If you're headed to the Lehigh Valley Friday night to watch Dorney Park's fireworks display, police warn you to watch where you park. State Police say motorists often park on the on and off ramps of Interstate 78. And in some cases spectators set up chairs outside of their vehicles. Trooper say this is not only illegal, it's unsafe. State Police will be patrolling the area Friday night to keep the area clear. State Police remind motorists it is unlawful to stand - or stop a vehicle on a limited access highway and motorists will be cited.

July 1, 2014

A missing Carbon County girl is found unharmed. A search was called this morning for a 10 year-old girl with special needs, from Summit Hill. Authorities tell us the girl is a foster child recently placed with a summit hill family. According to officials, the girl had an argument with her foster parents and took off just before eleven. Police were notified and a search began immediately. the young girl was found about three hours later unharmed. A couple who had seen the girl's picture on a Facebook alert spotted her leaning against a car in town.

June 30, 2014

The family of 20-year-old Defendant Dylan Frantz never expected him to shoot one of his good friends earlier this month. But they understand why it happened.
Defendant's Sister Tia Henneborn says, "If it was just him, then he would've just taken it. But being that there were females there, he would've done anything to make sure they were ok. Because that's how my brother is."
The shooting happened after police say Frantz stole cocaine and guns from 22-year-old Albert Guzman. Guzman went looking for him and set up a meeting at a gas station on Route 209 through a third party. Frantz was in a vehicle with two friends when Guzman immediately started assaulting him and took control-- driving to his grandfather's house against their will. Police say Guzman threatened to kill all three of the occupants, especially Frantz. Once there, the assault on Frantz escalated until Frantz admitted the stolen items were stashed at the home of the two women inside the car. Upon arrival at Sycamore Drive in Eldred Township, the two women exited the vehicle and Frantz shot Guzman with a .45 caliber gun in the upper torso. Guzman underwent emergency surgery and is recovering.
Henneborn says there's a lot of drugs and gang related activity in Effort. Both boys are good people. They just got caught up in the wrong crowd. The family hopes this is the turn-around they've been waiting for.
Henneborn says, "To get him out of the environment he was in and away from all the people. But I don't think he should stay in jail. He needs to go to rehab."
Frantz's prelim was continued today after Guzman didn't show up. There is now a warrant out for Guzman's arrest. He also is facing charges involving this incident such as kidnapping. Frantz's next hearing is scheduled for July 7th.

June 30, 2014

A bridge near the Lehigh Valley Zoo is now re-open to traffic. The Schlicher's Bridge on Game Preserve Road was closed in 2009 when officials deemed the span unsafe. A project began in July 2013 to rehabilitate the historic covered bridge in North Whitehall Township. The work included replacing the wooden structure with a combination steel and wood structure. The original bridge was built in 1882. The bridge serves as a main access to the Lehigh Valley Zoo. Officials there are planning a ribbon cutting in July to celebrate.

June 30, 2014

1.9 million dollars has been set aside to repair Bushkill Falls Road. Penn Dot is replacing all the rusted galvanized piping with new plastic piping, along with re-paving the entire stretch of road. Starting tomorrow, the road will be completely shutdown, while Penn Dot digs up the ground to install the new piping. Officials from Penn Dot expect this to be only temporary, and hope to have the road reopened by early next week. Penn Dot says the entire project should be completed by August, right before the school year begins.

June 27, 2014

Bees trying to take over a church in Palmerton are buzzed out. But they weren't swatted or sprayed. The 15 to 20 thousand bees are saved.
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church isn't just buzzing about God's word this week. A colony of bees decided to make their new home at the church. While many were discovered Monday on the floor dead, many more could be heard inside the wall. Instead of getting rid of them, fearing the sting, the church called in a bee keeper to take them to a safe location.
Honey Bees are one of God's creatures after all. But more importantly right now, they're scarce. And that's a serious threat to our food supply. Just a few days ago, President Obama sent out a Memorandum calling for a strategy to promote the health of honey bees and other pollinators.
While most of the bees have been removed, a few are still lingering. Bee Keeper Chris Maxwell is working to help get them out, but says they'll 'bee around' for two to three more days.
So the church is taking precautions-- Saturday's breakfast is now taking place in the Parrish Hall and Sunday's service will be outside. But church members do see bees in a new light. Council Member Eric Reif says, "Not to be afraid, run away or swat them or anything. They're really not there to sting you."
When faced with bees on your property, many people may want to turn to spray to kill the bees. But Maxwell points out the honey and comb left behind will attract other insects and rodents, and you'd have a whole new problem. So it's best to call an expert.

June 26, 2014

This morning emergency management officials received a report of a tractor trailer leaking an unknown substance westbound on I-80 in Tannersville.
A hazmat crew responded to the scene. Parts of I-80 and Rt. 33 were blocked off, causing major traffic backups throughout the area.
Emergency responders are in the process of cleaning up, making sure it's safe before those roads are reopened.
Northhampton Community College was evacuated and all classes were cancelled for the rest of the day.
One officer was injured and taken to the hospital.

June 26, 2014

The annual Carbon County Fair is about six weeks away. Organizers are looking for their queen! There are still a few days left for young ladies to enter this year's program. It's open to girls ages 16 to 20 who live in Carbon County or West Penn Township, Schuylkill County. The queen represents the fair throughout the year by promoting the event and all its programs. In addition to the crown, the winner receives scholarship money as does the runner up. The deadline to apply has been extended to June 28th. Girls must fill out a simple application and write a short essay. All the details can be found on the Carbon County Fair web site. The queen will be crowned on the opening night of the fair, August 4th.

June 26, 2014

A traffic stop leads to the arrest of a Mahoning Township man after drugs are found in his car. On June 17th, police say they stopped on Ashtown Road. The Mahoning Township Officer detected an odor of marijuana. He found a backpack filled with the drug, a grinder, a box of baggies, and a scale. Beckett is charged with possession with intent to manufacture or deliver among several other related offenses.

June 26, 2014

The fire was first reported around 2am today at the Bethany Wesleyan Church located along Blue Mountain Drive. Firefighters had their work cut out for them. The flames were hard to get to coming from the top of the gymnasium's roof. In order to battle the blaze, they climbed ladder trucks and once on the same level, had to construct holes in the roof for ventilation and to completely put the fire out. Lead Pastor Kevin Fetterhoff praises their efforts and is thankful no one was hurt. Besides the holes in the roof, the worst of the fire resulted in smoke damage. The church is already starting the cleanup process. Lehigh Township's Fire Marshal says the cause remains under investigation.

June 25, 2014

A Carbon County woman accused of hitting her kid with a baseball bat is in district court for her preliminary hearing. Police say back on April 27th, 40-year-old Christine Mertz of Mahoning Township hit her daughter with a bat for blocking a toilet. The juvenile was also bitten twice and punched about 10 times. A sibling reported witnessing the assault. Mertz waived her right to a preliminary hearing today. She now faces charges in Carbon County Court. She is out on $20,000 unsecured bail and was ordered not to have any contact with the victim.

June 25, 2014

East Stroudsburg officials meet today to review East Stroudsburg University's keystone building project.
It includes a large student center a library.
Before the project may begin officials have to address parking and traffic concerns that could come with it.

June 25, 2014

Five hundred miles in five days- Today, "Pedaling 4 Paws" stops in Carbon County. The cyclists' goal is to raise money and awareness for the needs of animal shelters they support along their route from West Chester, Pennsylvania to Canada. And they couldn't have pedaled through at a better time. Carbon County Friends of Animals in Jim Thorpe is set to buy a new facility. The shelter just needs $55,000 more. Vice President Denise Sebelin says they outgrew their current property years ago. They have too many cats and not enough space. The goal is to be able to have the cats free roaming.
"Pedaling 4 Paws" is asking you to help your local furry friends by stopping in or sending money. You can use their website at www.pedaling4paws.org to donate to the shelter.
This is the sixth year for the cause. And "Pedaling 4 Paws" is hoping to raise $55,000 (doubling what they raised last year) for the 19 shelters along the way.

June 25, 2014

Lehighton State Police gets a new home. The new station sits 3.4 miles North of the current station on Interchange Road in Towamensing Township. A spokesperson tells us, the new station features state of the art computers, a storage facility and more security cameras. The station comes with a new telephone number, which is (570) 681-1850, but the current number will be in service for the next six months. A grand opening ceremony is scheduled for July 15th.

June 24, 2014

Summer is the peak time for lightning strikes in North America.
This week happens to be dedicated to raising awareness.
During a thunderstorm, officials recommed you seek shelter in a building or vehicle, but preferrably a building.
Depending on the circumstances officials say both can be dangerous: down power lines on vehicles and house fires especially.
In 2014, Angel Gillette, the director of emergency management says there were 64 lightning strikes in the United States.
To stay safe indoors officials recommend you stay off corded phones, computers, electrical equipment, avoid pluming, baths, faucets, stay away from windows, stay away from doors, don't lay on concrete floors or lean against concrete walls.

June 24, 2014

School's officially out, which means there's no school lunch. But students in the Lehighton School District won't go hungry this summer. That's all thanks to the annual Zion United Church Summer Lunch Program.
It's the second day for the program that runs all summer long, Monday through Friday during the day from 11 to 12:30 until August 23rd. Every student that comes in gets a free nutritious lunch provided by the Department of Education. And the program is definitely needed. Many students piled in today, but about 120 students are expected to show up daily as the summer goes on. For more information and other courses offered like "Cooking Matters," go to the church's website at zionucc.com or contact them at 610-377-1191.

June 23, 2014

Pocono Mountain Regional Police Chief Harry Lewis is set to retire August 8th after 21 years of service, 6 years as chief. While there's been a lot of speculation as to why Chief Lewis is retiring, he sat down with us today to explain his decision. He's been offered a new job opportunity in sales and management. He says it has more to do with putting his family first.
The new chief position is left to the Pocono Mountain Regional Police Commission to decide. A meeting is planned for tomorrow night at 7 regarding the process.

June 20, 2014

Marshall's Creek firefighters are honoring brothers who lost their lives in an explosion, almost 50 years ago.
Tommorrow they're hosting a memorial ceremony at their firehouse at 1pm.

June 20, 2014

Business owners meet with PennDOT officials and State Representative Doyle Heffley to voice their problems over the McCall Bridge Project. Lehighton business owners report a loss in revenue since the project began. They blame traffic back ups for prompting area clients to avoid the area. During the meeting PennDOT officials said they'll review the traffic light cuing to improve traffic flow.

June 20, 2014

Carbon County District Attorney Gary Dobias is retiring. Dobias is currently serving his 6th term, which runs through December 31, 2015. However, Dobias confirms he will be leaving by August 2014. The D.A. is in his 23rd year serving for Carbon County, but his career started as a prosecutor in 1980. His retirement isn't out of frustration with the job, but rather feels it's the right time to go. The D.A. cites age as a factor, adding he would like to spend more time with his family. In recent years, the criminal case load has gone up exponentially. Dobias says the intensity and demands of the job was a key factor in handing over the role. First Assistant District Attorney Jean Engler will take over once Dobias officially retires.

June 19, 2014

Stroudsburg Area School Board officials are bringing in a new solicitor, terminating their contract with Daniel Coveleyn and his law firm.
Richard Pierce, the school board president says, Coveleyn's retainer, which is a fee paid to secure his services will end at the end of the month.
Jeffrey Sultanik will then take over his position.
He has worked with school law, since the beginning of his career, that began 35 years ago. He'll be taking care of new contracts for administrators.
In a letter to Toleno, Coveleyn thanked the district for his time there, but he says, he wasn't told why he was let go.

June 19, 2014

Officials in Carbon County are aiming to begin construction on a new county owned firing range. Last month, the county received approval from the Nesquehoning Zoning board to move forward with its proposed firing range. The range will be used to train local law enforcement. Commissioners expect the cost of the project to be minimal. Construction of the range includes clearing trees, leveling the land and building a berm to trap bullets. No start date is set on the firing range project.

June 19, 2014

Residents at Nis Hollow Estates, a mobile home park in Mahoning Township, are frustrated with management. According to Debra Keiper of Lot 96, she has repeatedly tried contacting management and the owners of Nis Hollow Estates. Keiper has not received a response. Residents say they have not had running water since Saturday, and want to know what is going on. Water was turned back on Wednesday. The Department of Environmental Protection is aware of the issue and met with the park manager and system operator last Thursday. The facility has low-water pressure and has begun issuing boil water advisory for park residents. Calls to Nis Hollow Estates management have not been returned.

June 18, 2014

A felony arrest warrant has been issued for a man police say is connected to a bomb scare over the weekend in Nesquehoning. The Allentown Bomb Squad was called to a home on 6th Avenue Saturday morning. The homeowner found a suspicious package outside with "tick tock" written on it. As a precaution, a robot was used to detonate the packaged. Tires were also slashed on vehicles in the driveway. Nesquehoning Police are looking for John Large. Officers found evidence at his Lansford home that they say connects him to this incident. Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to contact police.

June 18, 2014

The beach at Beltzville State Park is back open. The swimming area was closed last Thursday after high bacteria counts were found in water samples. State officials say the lake was tested again on Monday and the water samples came back clean. The beach re-opened to swimming this morning.

June 18, 2014

A Lansford woman is suspected of driving under the influence with children in her car after a mishap at a Mahoning Township gas station. Just before 1:00 pm, police were notified of a vehicle at a bank on Route 443 with 3 small children inside who were unbuckled. An officer then spotted the car at the Giant fueling up. That's when the driver pulled away with the nozzle still in her car ripping the gas line off the pump. After questioning the woman, identified as Kathleen Gannecilli, police suspected she was under the influence. Gannecilli was taken to the hospital for a blood alcohol test. Officers say the children ages 2, 5 and 7 were not in proper safety seats. They were placed into the care of Children and Youth. Charges are pending.

June 18, 2014

Govenor Tom Corbett has issued a statement acknowleding the harsh budget reality we've endured over the last year. He says federal funding was reduced by $700 million. The state budget is currently $29.4 billion.
He would like to eliminate our pension debt of roughly $50 million.
One area Corbett says he would like to make cuts in is human services. Over the last couple years Monroe County Commissioner Suzanne McCool says they've been able to reduce expenses, but she's hoping there won't be anymore cuts.
To prevent more cuts McCool encourages you to reach out to your legislators. There's about a week left before the deadline on June 30th.

June 18, 2014

Route 54 in Nesquehoning was shut down this morning after a Ford Escape SUV collided with a Redners Tractor Trailer. The accident occured around 7AM. Chief Sean Smith of Nesquehoning Police Department says the driver of the tractor trailer actually tried to prevent the crash from happening. Scott Smith of Leesport was driving westbound on Route 54 when he noticed a driver, Michael McLaughlin of Tamaqua, traveling eastbound on Route 54. McLaughlin was drifting into Smith's lane, so he attempted to swerve out of his way to avoid the SUV. The 18 wheeler crashed into a utility pole. Smith sustained arm injuries. McLaughlin suffered serious injuries and was flown via helicopter to Saint Lukes Hospital in Bethlehem. It is unknown whether McLaughlin fell asleep behind the wheel.

June 17, 2014

A Carbon County judge rules the owner of an old school house in Weatherly most pay thousands of dollars in fines. Weatherly officials say in 1997, Larry Halstead of Virginia purchased the historic Schwab School with a promise to restore the building - but he hasn't. Property maintenance code violations have been piling up against the 62-year-old man because of the building's current condition. Halstead was due in Carbon County Court in April for the issue but never showed up. Last week, the judge ruled Halsted must pay fines by August 9th. He has 30 days to appeal to the Superior Court.

June 17, 2014

Two Carbon County men are in jail on burglary and related charges. Mahoning Township Police report on Sunday they found John Ruzicka and Robert Ruzicka in a home on Oak Grove Drive. An officer spotted them in the garage area holding copper. The house had been damaged by fire back in February and the homeowner had not moved back in yet. The two are in prison on $25,000 bail.

June 17, 2014

Today the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission approved a 5% toll increase for all drivers. The hike goes into effect on January 4th. Officials say yearly turnpike toll increases are necessary for the commission to satisfy the financial plan of the transportation-funding law enacted in 2007. Under act 44 the Turnpike must give money to Penndot in addition to funding maintenance and projects on the turnpike itself. While next year's increase is the same for both cash paying and EZ-Pass customers, EZ-Pass users will continue to save at least 35 %. This is the first time since 2011 that EZ-pass rates have gone up by the same percent as cash rates.

June 16, 2014

Early this morning, Schuylkill County Drug Task Force, along with over two dozen police officers from various departments served warrants to 17 suspected drug dealers in Schuylkill and the surrounding areas. The suspected dealers were caught in a sting operation that took 8 months in the making.

Thomas Bilsak
Percy Brown
Latia Matrician
Adam Cruz
Ashley Weirich
Patricia Derau
Noelle Parisi
Michael Kabana
Maria Motroni
Jason Hill
Kelly Delessio
Justin Nahf
Terri Kates
Sally Hartung
Kristine Martin
Peggy Hill
Stephanie Forrester
Glen Bowman
Jimmy Troy
Juvenile Male

The suspected dealers are in custody and taken to jail. Their bail is set at around 25 thousand dollars each.

June 16, 2014

A house on River Road in Damascus exploded around 10:30 last night. The home belongs to Frank and Carol Kay, who owned the local Callicoon Flea Market in town. Neighbors were out with the Kay's just an hour beforehand celebrating Frank's birthday. If it wasn't for the neighbors declining a late night invitation for coffee, they could of easily been victims as well. Close friend, Pat Ray says she was tired and decided to go home instead, that simple decision, saved her life. The Fire Marshall tells us, it was a propane leak that torched the Kay residence. Frank and Carol Kay leave behind two sons.

June 13, 2014

Coolbaugh Township officials have a list of concerns involving the Pocono Mountain Regional Police Force. They're threatening to seek police services elsewhere.
Three of the issues on the list include accountability, fuel usage and billing hours. If Coolbaugh officials decide to leave, the department would lose a good amount of revenue.
Chief Harry Lewis tells us he's stepping down. We don't know it this decision is related to Coolbaugh Township's concerns. A special meeting will be held Wednesday night at 7, open to the public.

June 13, 2014

A 128-year-old school in Lehighton closes its doors forever. The Saints Peter and Paul School leaves the community will an all-day picinic celebration today. This comes after the pastor announced the decision in April due to enrollment and financial challenges. It's a bittersweet day for everyone, but they tell us they're glad to have experienced it and that they'll always have the memories.

June 12, 2014

A local group dedicated to serving veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder needs your help. The Valor Clinic Foundation is currently converting the vacant Hotel Jonas in Polk Township into a veterans rehab center thanks to grant money. The goal is to get homeless veterans off the street and back on their feet. It's something Founder Mark Baylis was trying provide for about three years. Now it just needs to be renovated to its original condition. Baylis says it can't happen without the community's support. If you'd like to donate your time, talents or money contact the Valor Clinic. The grand opening is scheduled for October 1st.

June 12, 2014

After ten years of delays, the Walnutport Water and Sewer Authority has a new filtration plant.
This time of year officials say water sources are in high demand. Alot of people are filling up their swimming pools, watering their grass or using water for other reasons.
The new system will be able to filter
200,000 more gallons of water a day.
Over the last couple years officials say they had to raise rates to pay for the project.
There are two other filtration systems, but this one is a more modernized version.

June 12, 2014

Today at the Pike County Emergency Management Center, county officials gathered to discuss response plans in a worst case scenario. The simulation was based on a terrorist attack on the Pike County Courthouse that resulted in numerous casualties. County officials however, were well prepared for what to do in such a crisis. The County has evacuation plans already set up in addition to using the E-M-A facility to relocate all essential personnel. After todays seminar, presenter, Rocco DiPietro, was impressed with the County's preparedness. The County Commissioners tell us, these emergency plans have been in the works for over two years.

June 12, 2014

Today at the Pike County Emergency Management Center, county officials gathered to discuss response plans in a worst case scenario. The simulation was based on a terrorist attack on the Pike County Courthouse that resulted in numerous casualties. County officials however, were well prepared for what to do in such a crisis. The County has evacuation plans already set up in addition to use the E-M-A facility to relocate all essential personnel. After todays seminar, presenter, Rocco DiPietro, was impressed with the County's preparedness. The County Commissioners tell us, these emergency plans have been in the works for over two years.

June 11, 2014

Hidden cash under a mattress is stolen from a Penn Forest Township home. State Police say last Wednesday they were called to a home on Bayberry Road for a report of a burglary. Investigation showed the suspect crawled through an unlocked window and stole $4,000 in cash from under the victim's mattress.

June 11, 2014

Most people we talked to today say they don't use websites like Craigslist because of exactly what happened at Stroud Mall yesterday. Stroud Area Regional Police say a man made arrangements to sell a cell phone and instead was robbed by the suspect using a stun gun. The exchange took place inside the mall around three in the afternoon with plenty of people and security around. Police say the victim caught up to the suspect in the parking lot and a scuffle began with the suspect using the taser more forcefully. A mall employee then intervened.
Captain Brain Kimmins says, "He withdrew his legally licensed to carry firearm and pointed it at the suspect, telling him to drop the phone and leave. And the guy did."
Police say the victim did everything right. It's good to take safety precautions, but this is a perfect example of the risk you're taking when selling to a stranger. Police say it can go wrong anywhere, at any given time.
Police are asking anyone with information on the suspect or incident to contact them.

June 11, 2014

President Barack Obama signed an executive order earlier this week to expand student loan debt forgiveness for millions of Americans.
The president says the average debt burden is about $30,000.
In 2011, legislators passed a law that would reduce monthly payments to 10% of the borrowers income. Overtime the debt could be forgiven, but that law only applied to people with newer loans. With the new order The President says everyone will be included.
Yesterday through Tumblr Obama was able to hear from Americansn and answer questions on education and affordability.
President Obama says changes may not take effect until the end of next year ÖA vote on a similiar bill is coming up this week, that would reduce interest rates.

June 11, 2014

Today the Pike County Library started a new service for the more mature citizens. The Area Agency on Aging opened up the new Milford Senior Center today. Seniors in attendance enjoyed coffee, lunch and a nice gathering with new friends. The Milford Senior Center will be open on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:30 am to 2:30 pm.

June 10, 2014

A second suspect in a Lansford armed robbery is now in custody. Rush Township Police took Joseph Becker into custody earlier today at a doctor's office. According to police, Becker and another man robbed a Lansford resident last Thursday. That other suspect, Christopher Keer, was arrested Friday. Both men are charged with robbery, unlawful restraint - simple assault and theft.

June 10, 2014

Some former and current Monroe County Correctional Facility employees reveal problems at the prison. Many are accsuing the jail's administration of wrongdoing and harasssment. The claims are directed at Warden Donna Asure who tells us they're false. The workers tell us many have been unfairly terminated and others either quit or retired due to a hostile work environment going on behind the prison's walls.
But Asure says they're just complaining about now being held accountable for their actions.

June 10, 2014

Police are usually the ones who save our lives, but one local police officer needs you to save his.
A Stroud Area Regional Police Officer, Ruben Torres is dying of cancer, but specialized treatment overseas could save his life.
His wife has set up an account online to raise money.
So far a little over $9,000 has been raised. The goal is to raise $30,000.
Pocono Motion Body Shop in Stroud Township will be offering $10 exterior and interior car washes by hand. Proceeds will go to the Torres family. If you would like to donate, log on to gofundme.com or stop by Pocono Motion.
Car washes will be offered Monday - Through Friday from 8am-4pm, Saturday from 9am to 11am.

Link To Website

June 10, 2014

Pot holes and distracted drivers are just some of the dangerous obstacles motorcyclists face on the road. The General Manager at Keystone Harley-Davidson in Parryville, encourages his customers to wear protective gear including a helmet and gloves. He also reminds them to have their motorcycle regularly maintained. But bikers tell us even if they do everything right, there's one factor they have no control over, the road. A PennDOT spokesperson tells us crews are working on road repairs and filling pot holes. He says safety is PennDOT's top concern. If you'd like to report a severely damaged road call 1-800-FIX-ROAD.

June 9, 2014

Monroe County Conservation District has received numerous complaints about the brown water in Swiftwater Creek. Officials tell us contractors building the Kalahari Resort at Pocono Manor failed to follow approved plans to avoid sediment pollution, and in some cases, didn't have their erosion controls in place at all. Kraemer Brothers Construction lack of compliance started when building began in October. In a statement provided by Kalahari, Contractor Partner Kevin Kraemer says, "Unfortunately, the early onset of a very harsh winter delayed construction on some of the site improvements we planned late last year."
The water is clear now and they're in cooperation. The Conservation District hasn't assessed any paid penalties for noncompliance at the site. But they aren't ruling it out.

June 9, 2014

A lake in Pike County is almost completely drained. A leak in Gorson Dam forced officials to draw down Sunset Lake in Lehman Township. Last week, the Department of Environmental Protection ordered the lake to be drained, after it was leaking nearly 20-30 gallons of water per minute. The dam is privately owned by the Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania, so the fate of the lake, is in their hands. DEP officials estimate the cost to repair the dam is in the tens of thousands of dollar range, and the burden to fix it lands on the Girl Scouts. We spoke to a representative from the Girl Scouts who says they are still weighing options on how to proceed.

June 9, 2014

A 51 year old female fell 30 feet from a trail at Glen Onoko Falls into the Lehigh River on Saturday afternoon. Area fire departments responded to the scene. The woman, who is not from Carbon County, suffered severe head injuries and numerous lacerations on her body. She lost consciousnessness and was flown to Lehigh Valley Hospital Trauma Center. Officials have not released her identity or current condition.

June 6, 2014

Seventy-Years ago today marked one of the biggest turning points of World War II. On D-Day, the Allied Forces stormed the beaches of Normandy France, leading to the victory against Hitler's Nazi Germany. Navy Soldier, Bill Glanville, was one of the first soldiers to hit the beach, and shared his experience. " We got off the rubber boats and loaded them up with TNT and away we go. Glanville says the experience was surreal, as bullets whizzed by him and his unit from every direction. " Fire from all directions, the Germans were coming one way, and we were coming the other way. In the battle, Glanville lost many good friends " 31 Killed and 60 wounded." However, Glanville has no regrets. " Im not mad I did it, Im happy I did it, but I'd never do it again". He hopes that the younger generation doesn't take today for granted, but remember the blood that was shed, to give them their freedom.

June 5, 2014

Citizens who served our country have no business being on the street helpless- A belief of many, but one, Founder Mark Baylis of the Valor Clinic Foundation stands behind. The clinic is dedicated to serving veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder. He's been trying to provide a place to get veterans off the street and back on their feet for about three years now. That place will be the vacant Hotel Jonas in Polk Township thanks to grant money.
The need is huge in Monroe County, 137 homeless veterans have been counted. And Baylis says that number is deceiving, veterans in temporary shelters were missed.
The Veterans Sanctuary grand opening is scheduled for October 1st, 13 heroes will be housed for a period of time based upon needs. While others can also be helped by a rehabilitation program. But the new home needs a lot of work and requires more money before that can happen.
You're being asked to lend your repair skills July 13th through the 16th. Just show up at the hotel on Route 534 between 9am and 6pm. Donations are also always appreciated. For more information on how to get involved and help a great cause, contact the Valor Clinic.

June 4, 2014

Neighbors on Flyte Road in Ross Township can't believe a property they call a dump is on its way to finally being cleaned up. Ross Township Supervisors have voted to hire Papillon and Moyer Contracting in Stroudsburg for the project. The proposal cost is $11,500. The property was formerly owned by Rockne Newell who is currently in jail. Police say Newell opened fire at a township supervisor meeting last August killing three people and injuring others. The shooting occurred a few days after Newell's condemned property was bought at a sheriff sale by the township. Supervisor Butch Kresge says along with the debris being picked up, two buildings and a culvert pipe bridge Newell made will be demolished.

June 4, 2014

The number of volunteer fire fighters is dramatically down statewide and Pike County Emergency Response is stepping up recruitment efforts to change that. Since 1983, the number of volunteer fire fighters in Pennsylvania has dropped from 350-thousand to 52-thousand. To extinguish this problem before it spreads, Pike County Training facility director Tim Knapp is pitching the program to high school students. He finds once he gets them to experience the state of the art training center they have available, a lot of the kids are instantly hooked. Knapp says "Since the recruitment process started, he's noticed the classes at the center have been packed, so its definitely working " Knapp plans to continue attracting the younger generation to get them involved..

June 3, 2014

The Pocono Mountains used to be known as the honeymoon capital of the world. And that recognition may be coming back due to a recent change in state legislation.
Clerk of Orphans Court George Warden says about 11 same-sex couples have applied for marriage licenses so far in Monroe County. This comes after Pennsylvania's ban on same-sex marriage was overturned about two weeks ago. And even if same-sex couples aren't applying for their marriage license here, it doesn't mean they're not getting married in the Poconos. Co-Owner Richard Spezzano of Rainbow Mountain Resort in Marshalls Creek is already planning one wedding and is now in the process of getting honeymoon and ceremony packages together to add to their pamphelts. It's all in response to the state's new legislation.
Prior to the ruling, same-sex couples traveled to other states where gay marriage was legal. Spezzano says he and his partner traveled to New York because they couldn't wait.
Spezzano, "Marriage halls, caters, so much business will come to Pennsylvania because of it. It's insane that they had to go to other states and spend the money there."
Spezzano believes it will bring people back to the Poconos as a honeymoon destination. Resorts like his with breath-taking views make the hassle of airports not worth it. It's 25 acres are open to the public daily.
Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau is also looking to attract same-sex weddings to the region. Officials say they're currently in the planning stages.

June 3, 2014

This year in Carbon County alone, local police have successfully raided 10 homes operating amateur meth labs. But while hit television shows like "Breaking Bad" romanticize the idea of meth labs, local emergency responders say that's not what really happens. Criminals operating meth labs in the area you what is called a "one pot method": using a "shake and bake" style with two bottles in order to concoct a potentially lethal combination of methamphetamine. Police say those operating meth labs actually do it to fuel their own addictions to the illegal drug. To learn more about the dangers of drug addiction, check out the Carbon County Drug and Alcohol Awareness Expo at CCTI this Thursday, June 5, from 5 PM-8:30PM.

June 3, 2014

The newest population statistics released today concerns director of Economic Development Mike Sullivan. Over the past three years, the population in Pike County declined 1.4 percent. This lands Pike County in the top-fifteen counties in the state, suffering the most significant drop. However, Sullivan is not ready to panic, but focus on developing more local jobs to encourage people to stick around. He is targeting manufacturing companies, that require minimal sewer and water to operate. Sullivan tells us, he already has buyers lined up, and with more jobs available, the population report should look much better the next time around.

June 2, 2014

Jury selection started today in the trial for 75 year old, Richard Corkery of Coaldale. He faces 27 counts of possession of child pornography. According to court documents the charges stem from an investigation in 2011. Corkery worked as a DJ for Magic 105.5 in Nesquehoning at the time, when police received a tip the former mayor viewed child pornography while at work.
The trial is scheduled to begin next week.

June 2, 2014

Stroudsburg School Board President Richard Pierce and Vice President Bruce Stewart have upset a group of parents with how they're handling the closing of both Ramsey and Clearview Elementary Schools. That's why those parents have started petitions and are now raising money to pay recruited Stroudsburg Attorney Janet Jackson a retainer fee of $5,000 to help them remove both. They've been raising the funds on a GOFUNDME site that's connected to their website stroudsburgschools.org and are more than halfway to their goal.The parents already have about 500 signatures on both petitions. Now they just need representation to bring those signatures in front of a judge. It'll be up to the judge to decide whether or not the members actually violated the school code. Stroudsburg Parent Erica McCabe says Pierce and Stewart neglected their duties in their actions involving the closing of Ramsey next month and Clearview next year.
McCabe says, "Them not allowing us to speak. Them acting unethically and illegally by having discourse without public knowledge or even school board approval."
Both Pierce and Stewart tell us the group has the right to their opinions but say they aren't valid and they haven't broken any laws.
Pierce and Stewart believe they're being attacked for the decision to close the schools. McCabe says it wasn't in the interest of the students. But both say it is and is necessary.
Bruce says, "We've recognized that [the buildings] aren't as important as trying to preserve programs and putting as many teachers as we can in the classroom."
Pierce, "I've been on the board going on my fifth budget, and every budget we've had a deficit. You can only borrow money from the contingency fund for so long before you go broke."
By the end of the month, McCabe says the signatures will be turned into the Court of Common Pleas.

June 2, 2014

Howie and Marie Morana of Nesquehoning have started a "Heroes for Hope" group.Concerned with the nationwide crisis of bullying in schools, the duo shares a message to elementary age children through birthday parties, school programs, and fundraisers. The husband and wife duo dress as comic book characters Batman and Catwoman, kids to be a "hero" who never gives up and to banish bullying. Dressed in character, the couple teaches the following:

1. A Hero never gives up
2. A Hero always does the right thing
3. A Hero always helps others
4. A Hero never BULLIES

For more information, visit their Facebook page, "Hero's for Hope" or call at 570-645-3518.

June 2, 2014

Howie and Marie Morana of Nesquehoning have started a "Heroes for Hope" group.Concerned with the nationwide crisis of bullying in schools, the duo shares a message to elementary age children through birthday parties, school programs, and fundraisers. The husband and wife duo dress as comic book characters Batman and Catwoman, kids to be a "hero" who never gives up and to banish bullying. Dressed in character, the couple teaches the following:

1. A Hero never gives up
2. A Hero always does the right thing
3. A Hero always helps others
4. A Hero never BULLIES

For more information, visit their Facebook page, "Hero's for Hope" or call at 570-645-3518.

May 30, 2014

Geraldine Hicswa can see everything going on at Werry's Pub on Route 209 from her backyard. And that's why she's been a part of the five year fight to stop a proposed strip club. She says it just wasn't the place for it with lots of children living on Prairie Lane. So she's delighted to be informed Applicant Daniel Russo of the company HOTT PA is withdrawing his bid for Werry's Pub to host adult entertainment. About a week ago, Middle Smithfield Township Alternate Solicitor Jerry Geiger received a letter from Russo's attorney notifying the opposing counsel he was done. Geiger had been working two years on the land development application-- one of two permits needed for the proposal to move forward. The second permit request-- appeal of a conditional use application that had been denied-- was also surrendered. The letter states both decisions were due to Russo's health status.
Geiger says, "That means that plans for a strip club on Route 209 have been abandoned."
The future of Werry's Pub remains up in the air as to whether or not the fight is really over. But recent township zoning changes present a road block.
Geiger says, "It wouldn't be allowed under the current zoning law and so then the legal question would come up whether a reinstated application could actually move forward."
Werry's Property owner Bob Spano, Sr. says he had nothing to do with HOTT PA and the future of Werry's will be discussed at a Middle Smithfield Township Zoning Board Meeting on Wednesday.

May 30, 2014

A recent school board decision in the Pocono Mountain School District is stirring up controversy.
After saving the district about 2.8 million dollars the school board has decided to up the superintendent's pay.
She's now the highest paid superintendent in the area.
The board granted a one time merit based salary adjustment of $50,000.
She was making $150,000 a year. Now her salary is up to $200,000. Sixty five employees received raises of 1.75 to 3.75 percent.
Officials from the school district released a statement saying the raises would not increase taxes for taxpayers.
In the last couple years they say taxes have decreased.
If you would like to share comments and concerns with the board they'll be holding a meeting next Wednesday.

May 29, 2014

Eric German couldn't be happier his friend's legacy is continuing to live on. This year marks the Third Annual Wounded Veterans Memorial Bike Ride in honor of Billy Brockett. Bikers start cruising from Pocono Mountain Harley Davidson in Snydersville and end at Riverside Bar and Grill in Easton. Brockett died in a car crash back in 2011. German organized the event shortly after to continue what he stood for-- a Marine who made a difference, not only through his service, but great involvement in local charities. That's why the funds raised from those participating will go toward AWSOM Animal Shelter and the Valor Clinic Foundation that helps veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. German says 600 to 700 people came out last year. But he's hoping many more will participate this year even if they're driving a car. It shows veterans they're appreciated and what they did matters.
It's a time to give back but it'll also be a party on Saturday, June 7th. Volunteers and Sponsors contributed to live bands, amazing prizes to win, an all you can eat pig roast, meet and greet with WWE Pro Wrestler Gene Snitsky and more. Registration begins at 10am and kickstands go up at 1pm. For more information go to www.billybrockettmemorialride.com.

May 29, 2014

A Nesquehoning police officer invovled in a fatal crash earlier this month is put on administrative leave. The crash happend May 12th. Michael and Carola Sauers were driving south on Route 209 in Nesquehoning when they were struck by officer Stephen Homanko's cruiser as he lost control on a curve. 69-year-old Carola who was a passenger in the car - was killed. Her husband - 64-year-old Michael was flown to the hospital with severe injuries. Borough officials tell us the 25-year-old officer hasn't been working because of injuries sustained in the crash. Last night borough council voted to put Homanko on unpaid administrative leave pending the completion of the Pennsylvania State Police crash investigation. The borough was told it could take weeks for that to wrap up.

May 29, 2014

If kids have a special place in your heart, the Zion Lutheran Church in Broadheadsville is asking for your helping hand.
Church officials are sponsoring a Kids Against Hunger Pakaging Event next Saturday.
Over the last several months the church has raised almost $10,000 in fundraising, but they need more volunteers.
Right now they have 50, but they need 200 people.
"It's something that anybody can do from young to old.. you're measuring out the ingredients that go into these packets and then sealing the packets," said Pastor Ann Melot.
Officials say they're be preparing the equivilent of $30,000 meals.
Pakages will be sent to local food pantries and a school in Haiti.
If you would like to help out contact the church office.
Set up starts at 10 and pakaging will begin at noon.
They plan to have two shifts.

May 28, 2014

A 45 Year old Smithfield Township man is accused of trying to kill his father Saturday Morning.
Today he appeared in court for his preliminary hearing.
Eighty year old, George Pugh, a veteran of the armed forces went before the court this morning to share his near death experience on the morning of May 24th.
His son had been staying with him and his wife Sandra about 2 years. While staying there George says they had a number of disputes over money.
Saturday his son David attacked him first with a hammer, striking him multiple times in the head. Then he went for a gun.
When his father got the chance he ran to his vehicle. When he tried to drive away David fired two shots, hitting his father in the right hand.
The judge decided to send all charges to county court. David is being held on secured bail.

May 28, 2014

Pocono Mountain Regional Police are cracking down on Prostitution in their coverage area. They say it's happening all over the Poconos but is occurring more frequently in Mount Pocono because of the numerous hotels located on Route 611. Their ongoing investigation led to 22-year-old Melissa McKee being arrested Friday on drug and prostitution charges, as well as, warrants related to probation violations in Monroe and Lehigh Counties. Police were tipped off by both routine hotel surveillance and anonymous complaint letters from the community. But an internet website sealed the deal.
Chief Harry Lewis says, "Prostitutes from the area are using Backpage.com to put up daily ads to meet and solicit their prostitution."
Police are using the site to identify people involved like McKee. Last November, we reported McKee was charged with advertising on the internet that sex was for sale at a Mount Pocono Motel. This is her second offense. Lewis says social media is allowing prostitution to be more prevalent. The website reveals numerous postings all over the Pocono Mountains.
Police are continuing their investigation and tell us more arrests will be made.

May 28, 2014

A Lehighton man is charged in a fatal pedestrian accident in Lehigh County. The incident happened on March 12th on Route 873 in Washington Township. Investigators say 54-year-old Donald Vito was driving south on Route 873 -- and 47-year-old Angela Pope of North Whitehall was jogging on the northbound shoulder. Vito's vehicle crossed over to the northbound lane of travel and struck Pope killing her. Vito was charged earlier today with involuntary manslaughter and other offenses. One witness driving behind Vito says he was speeding and swerving -- and that Vito was following another vehicle too closely. The witness saw Vito's vehicle enter the northbound lane in what he thought was an attempt to pass the other vehicle. Vito has been committed to Lehigh County Prison after bail was set at $100,000.

May 28, 2014

The Senior Farmerís Market Program will be offered again this year to eligible Carbon County Senior Citizens age 60 and over. This program is made possible through the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Food Distribution. The Carbon County Area Agency on Aging staff will be distributing $20.00 in vouchers, free to eligible seniors for the purpose of encouraging older adults to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables from local growers who make their produce available at farmerís markets.
Eligibility requirements:
You must be a Carbon County resident age 60 or older with a total gross annual income at or below $21,590 for a single person and $29,101 for a couple. A couple is entitled to $20.00 each. Proof of age and residency is required by showing your driverís license or photo ID. For those who cannot go to the distribution sites, a representative can pick up the vouchers for them, as long as the representative brings a completed proxy form signed by the person who the vouchers are for. The proxy form is needed for those picking up for their spouse as well. The proxy forms are available in advance at all five senior centers and the Area Agency on Aging (1-800-441-1315). Persons may only receive these vouchers one time per season.
Vouchers will be distributed at the following dates and locations from 12:00 to 2:00:
Friday, June 6 at Lehighton Senior Center, 243 S 8th St. Lehighton
Monday, June 9 at Weatherly Senior Center, 335 third St. Weatherly
Tuesday, June 10 at Panther Valley Senior Center, 90 E Catawissa St. Nesquehoning
Thursday, June 12 at Palmerton Senior Center, 501 Delaware Ave. Palmerton
Friday, June 13 at Jim Thorpe/Penn-Kidder Senior Center, Bear Creek Plaza, Route 903, Jim Thorpe
Provided all the vouchers have not been distributed, there will be an additional distribution on Wednesday, June 25 at Lehighton Senior Center, 243 S. 8th St. Lehighton from 12:00 to 2:00 for those unable to get to the previous distribution sites.

May 27, 2014

The Summit Hill Heritage Center will host the Summer Food Program for kids and teens at three locations this summer. The service will run weekdays from June 16 through August 15 (with the exception of July 4) from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm and is free to all kids and teens 18 and under (no proof of income or application is required). Locations are as follows:
Summit Hill Heritage Center, 1 West Hazard Street, Summit Hill
Grace Community Church, 15 West Ridge Street, Lansford
Christ Redeemer Church, 151 Third Street, Coaldale

The goals of this program are to provide a fun and safe place for kids to be active and visit with friends, to provide healthy meals based on USDA nutrition guidelines and to help families stretch their food resources.
Go to www.summithillheritagecenter.com or call 570.645.9133 to learn more. This service is sponsored by the Summit Hill Heritage Center and local families, businesses and churches. SHHC is a 501c3 nonprofit entity and the home of the Summit Hill Community Food Pantry.

May 27, 2014

Officials at the Lehigh Valley International Airport report a small boost in traveler traffic over the holiday weekend. They expect traffic to increase with the unofficial start to summer officially here. The months of January, February and March turned out to be the lowest months in travelers over the last four years. Last month was up nearly two thousand people than the year prior. Two new venues at the airport, PA Pub and Java Joint, are ready just in time for the busy season.

May 27, 2014

About a year ago county officials created a discount program for veterans.
Since it's creation, officials say 80 businesses have signed up and 1,000 veterans, but they would like to see more come on board.
If you would like to participate, stop by the Monroe County Veteran Affairs office in the County administration building.

May 27, 2014

Aquashicola Volunteer Fire Company is in a race to win $10,000. They beat out hundreds of other nominations as one of 20 top volunteer fire departments in Johnsonville Sausage's nationwide search for the "Best Of Us" campaign. Now it's up to you whether they come out on top and win for their great community service and volunteerism they provide you with everyday. Just vote online at www.johnsonville.com/bestofus. You can vote once a day until June 20th. The firehouse with the most votes wins.

May 23, 2014

Memorial Day Weekend is a time to remember those who have died serving our great nation. And to wave goodbye to being snowed in. It's finally time to get out and enjoy warmer weather in the Poconos. Employees at Camelbeach Mountain Waterpark in Tannersville are busy getting ready today. The splish-splashing good time is open for business starting tomorrow at 11am for Memorial Day Weekend. Camelbeach will also be honoring military members and their families who have ID with free admission on Memorial Day.

May 23, 2014

Memorial Day is three days away, but some are recognizing veterans today.
This morning students from Franklin Elementary School honored the many veterans who fought for our freedoms. They sang songs, read poems, shared history and presented wreaths.
The Principal, Suzanne Howland says, their main goal is to make sure students understand it's not just a day off school or work.
Kevin Long, a commander of the United Veterans organizations and a retired sergeant for the Pennsylvania National Guard, says 27% of americans know the true meaning of the holiday. He says, having these events are a good way to teach students while they're young.
If you go to a barbeque this Memorial Day, veterans ask you to leave flowers at a grave or take a moment of silence.

May 23, 2014

Joyce Spinelli, an 81 year old woman from Pike County was locked out her house one frigid February day when attempting to take out the trash. When she walked around towards the back, she slipped and fell in the snow. Joyce was outside screaming for help, when her bus driver, Antonio Biafora heard her from a distance. Biafora rushed over, picked her up, and brought Joyce inside. He immediately began warming up her hands, and getting her the help she needed. Though she suffered frostbite on her fingers, if it wasn't for Antonio's actions, the situation could of been dire. He got Joyce the proper treatment, and she credits him with saving her life. Biafora has been employed with Pike County transportation for 15-years, and says nothing means more to him in the world, then being able to help. Spinelli says " I thank god he was there that day. He's my hero ".

May 22, 2014

Officials have been working to bring radar guns to local police departments in Pennsylvania for years.
While many are for it, some say it may be used as a revenue generator for local municipalities.
State Representatives, municipal officials, police and members of the public were able to talk radar at a hearing today.
Pennsylvania is the only state in the country that doesn't allow local law enforcement to use radar guns to monitor speed.
As of now police only have three ways ro monitor traffic, which they say are unreliable and time consuming.
Officials plan to hold at least two more hearings.

May 22, 2014

Concerned parents are angry that the Stroudsburg School Board made what they're calling "a rash and reckless" decision last night. Both elementary schools were voted to close-- Ramsey at the end of the school year and Clearview at the end of the next school year. And they're not the only ones. The board's vote was closely divided, in both cases 5-4. Some board members even raised the same concerns as parents.
The school board has been looking into closing both Ramsey and Clearview Elementary because of the declining enrollment and as a way to save money.
It's important to understand the decision is not finalized. Superintendent Dr. John Toleno says, "Pennsylvania Department of Education still has the ultimate authority to rule for or against the reasons for the closures. Toleno also says since Clearview isn't closing for another school year, the board could always take another look and change their minds.

May 22, 2014

A winning Cash 5 ticket is sold in Schuylkill County. The ticket worth $225,000 was among over 24,000 prize-winning tickets sold statewide for the May 21st drawing. The local ticket was purchased at "Sam's Place" in the Cressona Mall in Pottsville. It correctly matched all five balls to win the jackpot: 26-29-31-39-42. The Cash 5 winner has one year from the drawing to claim the prize.

May 22, 2014

A Lehigh County man is arrested for allegedly threatening a former co-worker at a Mahoning Township store. Police were called to Walmart yesterday for an attempted assault. Officers say ex-walmart employee Anthony Munoz of Slatington came into the store with a baseball bat in an attempt to beat up a former co-worker. Munoz has been charged with criminal attempt of simple assault, harassment and disorderly conduct.

May 21, 2014

After a federal judge ruled the ban on same sex marriages in Pennsylvania unconstitutional, Monroe County officials are scrambling to get paperwork ready.
Today doors were open for all couples to apply for marriage licenses.
By afternoon, George Warden says, they received two phone calls and one application .
There office is open Monday-Friday from 8:30-4:30 pm. They recommend to come in before 4pm.

May 21, 2014

It's a very close Primary Republican Election race for the 176th Legislative District in Monroe County. Candidates Jim Becker and Jack Rader are only 19 votes apart after last night's results. Monroe County Voter Registration/Elections Director Sara Silfee says the decision is coming down to the 64 absentee ballots cast from the 176th. Rader is in the lead but she says it's all up in the air at this point.
The winner will go against unopposed Democratic Candidate Hope Smith in November's Election. The absentee ballots will be counted tomorrow and we'll have more information on this very close race as those final tallies come in.

May 21, 2014

At 1:30 AM during their nightly patrol, Lansford Police officers noticed a cloud of smoke coming from 336 West Snyder Avenue. Officers sprang into action, alerting the neighbors next door of the fire. The officer, along with homeowner Joe Gulla of 338 West Snyder Avenue, used garden hoses to tame the fire until firefighters arrived at the scene. Six surrounding fire departments were on scene to bring the blaze down. Joseph Greco, Fire Chief of Lansford Fire Department, says the homeowner of 336 West Snyder Avenue lives in Allentown and was in the process of renovating the house. One firefighter sustained minor injuries. No one else was hurt in the fire. Gulla sustained damage to the side of his home. His family is still staying at 338 West Snyder Avenue. They plan on contacting their insurance company to find out damages.

May 21, 2014

After months of waiting, the town of Hawley is finally getting its makeover. Workers from Benjamin Moore Paints have started "painting what matters " - Hawley's downtown district. The town won the free paint job through a national contest, voters chose historic Hawley, and the company responded footing the bill for the facelift. The painters have a deadline of June 13th to complete their work.

May 20, 2014

Workers at Beltzville Lake and State Park are gearing up for a busy holiday weekend. Park Manager, Devin Buzard, reminds drivers to follow the detour signs to Pohopoco drive. Also, drivers are not allowed to park along Pohopoco Drive in front of the park entrance. Vehicles parked illegally will be towed. The concession stand will be open and boat rentals will be available.

May 20, 2014

The Primary elections are today, but the polls in Pike County are anything but packed. Voter turnout was disappointing across the board in several townships across the county. This discouraging trend continued in Wayne County as well, where traffic was slow all day. The people we talked to were disappointed, but not ready to panic yet. The polls are open until 8 pm tonight.

May 20, 2014

Every cage is occupied at AWSOM Animal Shelter. Overcrowding is a constant problem at the only shelter in Monroe County. But the upkeep is getting out of control right now. AWSOM officials have never seen their Yelp for Help fund so low. Too many animals are needing extra tender loving care.
AWSOM Operations Director David Carbone says, "The older dogs are coming in and the medical bills for the older dogs are actually tripling. Some of our dogs here are costing $3,000-$4,000 to get them up to a good health so we can adopt them out."
It's also kitten season and it seems like they're multiplying. Monroe County has a huge feral cat problem. So, not only does each kitten receive normal care anf shots, but each kitten goes home with a spay/neuter voucher to be redeemed when old enough. Last year, just the kitten spay/neuter bill was $15,000 and it's expected to increase this year with so many more already coming in.
There are two ways to help the nonprofit organization. One, donate on their website or two, come out to their Open House Adoption Event this Saturday from 11am to 4pm and provide a "furever" home. There will be plenty of fun activities and bring your dog for nail clipping, toe nail painting and microchipping. There will also be discounted adoption fees.

May 19, 2014

Rescue crews were busy this weekend on the Delaware River.
Rangers say two young women had to be rescued last night, after their canoe was pinned, causing it to overturn. The ladies were left stranded on the river. Luckily, they were near an island and they could access until rescue crews could reach them.
If their canoe hadn't tipped over so close to the island rangers say the circumstances could've been much worse. The two women had life vests in the boat, but they weren't wearing them.
There were also three other incidents along the Delaware River and Dingmans Ferry. Right now rangers say water levels are above 5ft. If you're going out on the water you're required to wear a life vest.

May 19, 2014

A Slatington woman is accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her employer in New Jersey. According to the Hunterdon County Prosecutor, 54-year-old Colleen Mahony-Sgro stole in excess of $500,000 from Bolton Construction. She was the bookkeeper at the company. She is charged with theft by deception and forgery among other offenses. Mahony-Sgro posted the $50,000 bail and was released pending a first court appearance.

May 19, 2014

A Summit Hill man is charged with theft and forgery after allegedly taking money from clients with intellectual disabilities. State Police say 40-year-old Donald Smale was formerly employed by the non-profit organization NHS as an Intellectual Development Disabilities Program Specialist. Between November 2012 and February 2014, he's accused of misusing, defrauding and stealing funds from two clients. He allegedly removed over $23,600 from the victims. Investigators say neither victim is competent enough to make financial decisions for themselves, and relied on Smale to assist them with managing their finances. Smale's preliminary hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.

May 19, 2014

People in the Lehighton area heard cries for help Saturday and discovered a rafter stuck in the Lehigh River. The woman was on a family rafting excursion with Pocono Whitewater Rafting when her raft hit a concrete structure of the Weissport Bridge and overturned. Most of the rafters were dumped out, except for the woman, who told rescuers she could not swim. The Lehighton Fire Department River Rescue Team, along with Pocono Whitewater Rafting Guides, were there to guide the woman to safety. She was not hurt.

May 19, 2014

Today Kaylynn Bunnel plead guilty to being an accomplice to third degree murder, a felony of the first degree. Police say Bunnel, along with four others-- Jacqueline Harrigan, Bruce Murray, Dyqunn Mitchell and Brandon Wilson-- were involved in the drive-by shooting January 14th at a mobile home on Old Timber Road in Hamilton Township. On of the shots hit Darcey Kravchenko in the head killing him. He was not the target. Harrigan and Murray were also in court today to offer their guilty pleas but their cases were continued. Last week, Mitchell plead guilty to conspiracy to commit third degree murder. Bunnel has consistantly cooperated with authorities so her Defense Attorney says her plea today comes as no surprise. We're told Bunnel has agreed to testify against the other four charged. There's no word on when Bunnel will face sentencing, but she's facing 6 to 40 years.

May 16, 2014

Drivers at the Turnpike Service Plaza in Allentown discovered the "Take 25" pledge. Volunteers from the National Center for Missing and exploited Children encouraged parents to take 25 minutes to talk to their kids about safety. "We want our children to have the skills and the tools necessary to be able to recognize that they may be a risk at what they're doing or a risky situation and feel comfortable enough to tell a trusted adult as to if something did happen," says Stephen Speirs, a volunteer with the non-profit. You cant take the pledge and access the tips online at take25.org.

May 16, 2014

It's just four days until Pennsylvania's 2014 Primary Election. Republicans Jackie Leonard, Dr. Anthony Diecidue, David Parker and Pete Begley all want to be the new state representative in the new 115th District. Pennsylvania's redistricting process moved the 115th to Monroe County because of its growing population in the last census. The district includes Coolbaugh, Price, Paradise and Stroud townships, as well as the boroughs of Stroudsburg and East Stroudsburg. All four candidates want to get more involved representing the area they've lived in for years. But they have different backgrounds. Leonard has worked at Sanofi Pasteur for the last 13 years as a Senior Lab Analyst. She's also been a School Board Director at Pocono Mountain School District for the past three years. Dr. Diecidue says he's always been involved in politics in the background. He's been on a school board and has run a business for 25 years. Parker works for his family's business Cramer's Home Centers that was started by his great grandfather. He's on the Salvation Army Board, the Builder's Association Board and works with Habitat For Humanity. Begley says, "I'm a Borough Councilor in East Stroudsburg from the 5th ward. I've been involved in politics for the past seven years."
All four have the main focus of reforming school property taxes and creating more jobs in Monroe County. But each has other views for what needs to get done.
Leonard- Reform Pension Crisis
Dr. Diecidue- Retain Youth Graduates
Parker- Provide Monroe County Fair Share Of PA Funding
Begley- Change Regulation That Drives Up The Cost Of Utilities, Gasoline And Home Heating Oil
Now it's time for you to decide who's the best choice. Democratic Candidate Maureen Madden is unopposed in the Primary Election. She'll be on the ballot in November facing the winner of the Republican Primary. Your vote counts Tuesday.

May 16, 2014

A Popular tackle and bait shop in Pike County is up for auction. The Pecks Pond bait and tackle store in Porter Township is up for grabs, as are all the supplies inside it. Nearly 40 boats, tackle, lures, poles, fishing supplies and other knick knacks will be going to the highest bidder. The auction starts at 11 am tomorrow for the shop itself, followed afterwards with a separate auction, for all the supplies.

May 15, 2014

A reward is being offered to find who's responsible for shooting a pit bull in Bushkill. A 14-month-old dog named King is now blind after someone shot him with bird shot last Wednesday. King was brought to Pocono Veterinary Services bloody with pellets all over his face and body. Vets say he was also sprayed with mace. King's owners say he got loose while they were at work. They're just happy to have him back and tell us it's amazing how well he's adapting. Pennsylvania SPCA is offering a reward to anyone with information that leads to the person who shot King. Just contact them at 1-866-601-SPCA.

May 15, 2014

A number of county owned vehicles will be auctioned off tomorrow by the board of Monroe County Commissioners.
The auction will be held in Mountainhome at "Auto in Motion."
Most of the vehicled have been seized through drug task force investigations.
15 cars will be auctioned, 11 seized by the drug task force.
Officials say you could find a car as new as a 2008 model, not only at a decent price, but in pretty good condition.
"We earn probably around $20,000 per auction and that money is used to finance the drug task force, either for covering overtime, investigations, to buy equipment or to pay informants," said Detective Eric Kerchner of the Monroe County District Attorney's office.
The vehicles will be available for inspection tomorrow from 1-2pm. The auction starts at 2pm. Bidders are required to pay with cash or certified check. No personal checks or credit cards will be accepted.
If you purchase a car you will also need photo identification, including your address. Cars have to be removed the day of sale.

May 15, 2014

Republicans Matt Connolly, Matthew Dietz, and Doctor David Moylan all want the chance to take on the democratic incumbent for the 17th Congressional District, Congressman Matthew Cartwright. Connolly, of Bethlehem Township, says his political experience can help clinch the position from Cartwright. Dietz, of Wind Gap, wants to eliminate wasteful spending if he heads to Washington. Moylan of Pottsville, believes his experience as a physician can help with alternatives to Obamacare. They're making the rounds and hopes to get the votes come Tuesday.

May 14, 2014

The primary election is quickly approaching and two men are competing for the republican nomination for state representative in the 176th district.
The district covers Mount Pocono along with Tobyhanna, Tunkhannock,Jackson, Chestnuthill, Pocono, Eldred and Polk Townships.
Do You know your candidates?

Jim Becker
As a small business man, Jim Becker says, he got involved in politics early. He started a business in 1979 and became vocal on pressing issues.
When he was asked to contact his representative or senator, he says, he did. He traveled to Harrisburg and Washington as well.
One of the biggest issues Becker says he would like to address is property tax reform. He says, Senate Bill/ House Bill 76 could be a big help to not only homeowners, but also the economy.

Jack Rader
Rader has background in Business as well, but also municipal leadership.
He served as...
- A Jackson Township supervisor for almost 28 years
- Chairman of the Pocono and Jackson water authority
-Vice Chairman of the regional planning board for Chestnuthill, Jackson, Eldred, Ross and Polk Townships
-Chairman of the Hamilton, Jackson and Pocono Park and open space committe
-Vice President of the Monroe County Council of governments

... Out of the many issues we face in Monroe County Rader says, three are most important to him: the economy, jobs and property taxes.

If you still haven't chosen a candidate, you have a week to decide, before the election next Tuesday, May 20th.

May 14, 2014

State police investigating a house fire in Kresgeville have determined it accidental after an elderly man was trapped inside last night. And surrounding residents on Mountain Road are left mourning the loss of a beloved neighbor. 69-year-old William Berry died of smoke inhalation. His wife, granddaughter, dogs and cats all made it out. The fire broke out just after 8pm, from a distance, only a charred front door indicates the tragedy at the brick ranch home. Police tell us a grease fire started on the kitchen stove.

May 13, 2014

State Police are investigating a fatal crash involving a Nesquehoning officer.
It happened around 6:30 last night. One woman is dead, a man is in critical condition and the officer sustained minor injuries.
There are rumors the incident happened after a police chase.
State police have taken over the investigation.
State Police say, they have no evidence the officer was involved in a chase, but they're looking into various possibilities, including speed.
Police say the Nesquehoning officer, Stephen Homanko was negotiating a curve when he lost control and crossed the center line.
Shortly after the crash two people were taken into custody in Jim Thorpe, but police say, no one has been arrested in connection to this investigation.
State police are asking anyone who witnessed the crash or has more information to come forward.

May 13, 2014

Carbon County residents now have more places to safely dispose of unwated prescription drugs. The permanent med-return boxes are now located at the Lehighton, Jim Thorpe, Mahoning and Weatherly Police Stations. All pharmaceutical drugs being disposed of need to be in a sealed container, such as the orginal bottle or a zip-lock bag. Liquid medications should remain in the orginal container. Personal information should be removed or crossed out with a permanent marker.

May 13, 2014

Wayne Highlands Middle School and Preston Area School were awarded with the Governors Award for Excellence in Academics. The award's based on the 2012-2013 School performance profile, which measures, achievement, academic growth, attendance, and graduation rate. Wayne Highlands Middle school attained the highest score in the district, earning a 94 percent, while the Preston school finished second with a 92.7 score. The award was presented to the schools by the Secretary of Education, along with other local elected officials .

May 13, 2014

Sponsors and organizers will finally get to see all their hard work come alive this Saturday. A Spring Festival is planned and they're already doing preparations at the second acquired Cherry Valley National Wildlife Refuge property. It's a make-up event after the original festival in October was cancelled due to the federal government shutdown last year. This will be the first time the Moreton Homestead Property in Ross Township will be open to the public since the dedication. The Spring Festival is a free event to show off the property and connect the community together with nature. There will be plenty of family fun activities to get the kids excited about spending time outdoors. There will be fishing, archery, seedling planting, bird feeder and bird house making and much more. There will be something for everyone including nature walks and demonstrations. It's happening Saturday rain or shine from 10 am till 5 pm. The entrance is located on Mountain Road in Saylorsburg. For more information email questions@focv.org.

May 12, 2014

It's day one of the trial for a Carbon County psychologist accused of coaxing a female patient to perform a sexual act on him. Doctor Michael Degilio of Penn Forest Township faces several charges including involuntary deviate sexual intercourse for an incident that allegedly took place at his office in February 2009. The victim says she was suicidal and had recently checked herself out of the behavioral health unit at Gnadden Huetten hospital in Lehighton at the time of the encounter. Degilio says the assault never happened. The victim took the stand today. The defendant is expected to take the stand later this week.

May 12, 2014

A new four story student center and library at East Stroudsburg University may be closer to being built.
Officials say the planning process has been working to sort out the details. Through an impact study, they found traffic and parkins as two of their biggest challenges.
Officials say expenses for some of the project have been accounted for, but they don't include traffic improvements.
ESU Officials plan to meet with the borough tomorrow. They also have to meet with Penn Dott before they can move forward. The center is expected to open in 2016.

May 12, 2014

We're in the midst of prom season. Young ladies have prepared by finding the perfect dress, but many of them want to pair it with a healthy glow and have gone to a tanning salon. That may not be the case next year as Pennsylvania joins over 30 other states that have put regulations on teen tanning.
Tanning is known to cause skin cancer and the risks are higher for those who start at a younger age. In 60 days, teens 16 or younger will be banned from using tanning beds and 17-year-olds will need their parent's consent. That's all based on a new law just approved by Governor Tom Corbett. Mother of two Tara Good is happy peer pressure will no longer be an issue.
Tara Good says, "It definitely needs to be done, because my daughter's 12 and she talks about her friends that go tanning. That's crazy."
But a lot of teenagers don't like the new restrictions.
The new bill will also require salons to post signs stating tanning can cause cancer. In 60 days, tanning salons will need to register with the state and will be charged a fee depending on the number of tanning beds.

May 12, 2014

The body of a Berks County man is found in the Lehigh River Sunday morning. According to the coroner, 72-year-old Laverne Hunsicker fell into the water while fishing. His body was pulled from the water about 50 yards south of the Route 873 bridge in Washington Township. The coroner is doing an autopsy today to determine Hunsicker's exact cause of death.

May 12, 2014

A Dick's Concrete truck driver is being treated in the hospital after his truck rolled over in Milford. The driver was traveling from Goshen New York on a delivery, when his GPS system took him on the wrong route. When the driver attempted to turn around, the truck stalled, and the driver lost complete control of the vehicle. He attempted to steer the truck into an embankment, but the vehicle ended up flipping over. The driver was unconscious and was air-lifted to Morristown General Hospital in New Jersey for treatment. The concrete in the vehicle was contained, and the truck took over 4 hours to tow. The name of the driver is not being released.

May 9, 2014

Tomorrow's a big day for mail carriers.
They will be looking for non-perishable food items by your mailbox for their 22nd annual "Stamp Out Hunger" Campaign.
Today carriers in the Lehigh Valley held a press conference to get the word out. Other locations will be participating as well in Lehigh, Northhampton, Carbon, Monroe, Pike and Wayne Counties.
Officials say, they recently found over 70,000 people in need, after a census in March.
Please don't donate foods in glass containers or anything that may spoil.

Participating Post Office Locations in the area:
East Stroudsburg
Mount Pocono
Jim Thorpe
Summit Hill

May 9, 2014

Representatives of an Islamic retreat in Saylorsburg are hoping to set the record straight. It's in response to the Prime Minister of Turkey last week asking the United States to extradite Fethullah Gulen. Gulen is a cleric who lives at the Golden Worship and Retreat Center. They are deeply distrubed by the Prime Minister's claims and say they're a sign of his growing intolerance of democratic dissent. The Prime Minister claims Gulen was involved in a corruption scandal aimed at overthrowing his government. In order for an extradition to occur, there has to be charges filed and those charges filed have to be about a crime accepted in the United States that isn't political. Board Member Dr. Yuksel Aslandogan for the retreat says, "We don't expect the United States to comply with that request, which is so politically tainted and it is not based on any charges. Therefore, it is very much a sign of his becoming increasingly authoritarian."
And people interacting with the cleric say the accusations are ludicrous because of the poor state of health the 74-year-old is currently in.

May 9, 2014

In Pennsylvania this past year there were over 14,000 DUI crashes, and that problems even more concerning in Pike County. Over the past several years, DUI cases are on the rise, but its not only drinking and driving that's the problem District Attorney Ray Tonkin says "the reason for the recent spike is we've seen an increase in arrests resulting from driving under the influence of controlled substance or drugs " To protect the traveling public, this weekend State Police are setting up DUI sobriety checkpoints and roving patrols. These checkpoints will be conducted with a zero tolerance policy. Police are urging people, if you drink, do not attempt to drive.

May 8, 2014

Rumors continue to fly over whether the superintendent for Stroudsburg area schools has been fired.
After parents demanded answers at the board meeting last night, the school's attorney is speaking out.
Jeffrey Sultanik says, Dr. John Toleno has not been fired, but they're investigating irregularities involving his contract.
By State law John Toleno has not been fired, but they're investigating irregularities involving his contract. By state law officials say the term for superintendents is no more than five years. According to paperwork, officials say Toleno is up to about seven.
Sultanik says, he was appointed in June 2007, he served two years, then the board offered him a five year extension.
Sultanik says they have reason to believe the board at the time of his extention, improperly notified the State of Pennsylvania regarding Dr. John Toleno's term of employment.
Because Dr. Toleno is commissioned to be the superintendent until August 2014 they plan to honor the rest of his term.
We reached out to Dr. Toleno and he chose not to comment at this time, but he says he plans to seek legal counsel.

May 8, 2014

A Whitehall woman is charged with arson after allegedly setting fire to a Northampton County home earlier this week with her baby nearby. Lehigh Township Police were dispatched for a welfare check Tuesday at a home in the 700 block of Almond Road. Police found boxes and other items on fire. Officers say 24-year-old Jillian Faustner came to the residence to collect her belongings and instead set fire to them. Faustner's five month old baby was in the car just feet away from where the fire started burning the side of the unoccupied house. Police used extinguishers to slow the burning until the Lehigh Township Fire Company arrived on scene. No one was hurt. Faustner is charged with arson, endangering the welfare of a child and several other related offenses.

May 8, 2014

A Mahoning Township woman is arrested for assaulting her kid with a baseball bat. Police say on April 27th, they got a call from the Lehighton Hospital about tan assault of a juvenile. The victim's mother Christine Mertz is accused of hitting the child with a wooden bat over a blocked toilet in the home. The victim was struck twice on the right side with the bat, bitten twice and punched about 10 times. Mertz is charged with endangering the welfare of a child, simple assault and harassment. Mertz is in prison on unrelated charges.

May 8, 2014

Community support is making all the difference for a Barrett Township business. The owners of Mountainhome Candle Company thought all was loss when their factory and warehouse building burned down in February. Justine and Chuck Knipe only had candles left to sell in their retail store, Mountainhome Wicker and Gifts, and didn't know how'd they make more. They didn't have insurance on that particular building. That's when the community started putting fundraisers together. The husband and wife team can't help but count their blessings-- they're back to making candles.The candles are made off-site right now, but they're now inspired to rebuild all because of community support.

May 8, 2014

With Spring here, pools are preparing to open and a busy tourist season will kick off as the weather warms up and visitors flock to the Lehigh River or Beltzville State Park. Officials say it's a great time to re-educate the public on water safety tips to ensure a fun and safe time out on the water. May is National Water Safety Month; the American Red Cross advises families to always swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards. If lifeguards aren't present, always keep an eye on your surroundings and never leave a young child unattended by the water. If you go boating, always wear a life jacket, and avoid alcohol use! Alcohol impairs judgment. Keep in mind most boating fatalities occur from drowning.

May 8, 2014

Governor Corbett declared May 8th Red Day, across the state. Renew, energize, and donate is what the day is all about. Today in Milford over 30 volunteers took the day off work to help picking up garbage, sweeping, and cleaning up the community. After finishing, they made their way to the Columns museum in Milford, where they swept, painted, vacuumed and provided the museum with a makeover.

May 7, 2014

Decapitated wild birds have now turned up at the Donald Gower Funeral Home in Gilbert. About three weeks ago, and about three miles away on Route 209 in Brodheadsville, Zion United Lutheran Church members also discovered a similar thing. State Police at Fern Ridge are now investigating both. Police say they are led to believe the two are related, but they're waiting on concrete fatcs. The crime also seems to have intensified with a voodoo doll and a mouse trap in the bag left to be found at the funeral home. Police say whoever is behind this would definitely be charged with animal cruelty but more charges could result. If anyone has any information on these two cases, you're asked to contact Fern Ridge State Police.

May 7, 2014

It's time for counties in Pennsylvania to submit new land use plans through the year 2030.
Monroe County Officials have theirs ready, but they need feedback from local municipalities before they can
send it on to the state.
Commissioners say they would like local organizations to participate as well.
There are three major components in the Monroe 2030. There's a comprehensive plan update, a plan for open space and a plan for economic development.
Officials from the planning commission will be giving presentations about the plan to municipalities starting next week.
The review period is for 45 days, but officials would like comments to be submitted by June 1st.

May 7, 2014

The 7th annual Bo Tkach Memorial Golf Tournament was held today at a new location: Woodstone Country Club & Lodge in Danielsville. The shot gun start started at 9:15 am. The tournament is part of the Bo Tkach Foundation, with a mission to create awareness for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and other mental health issues while providing essential funding for athletic programs and individual mental health screening and treatment. The tournament completely sold out sponsorship with a full field of 144 golfers. All proceeds directly benefits students in Carbon, Lehigh and Northampton counties.

May 6, 2014

Thornhurst EMS has lost two-thirds of calls in Coolbaugh, Tobyhanna and Thornhurst Townships.
Around the end of March officials say emergency medical services in the area were switched to Pocono Mountain
Regional EMS.
Emergency responders say they weren't notified until after the switch.
Officialsheld a meeting last monday to discuss the fate of the ambulance company, they will meet again this thursday.

May 6, 2014

PennDOT is hoping to eliminate driver frustration, at least when it comes to traffic delays. When construction backs up traffic on Interstate 80 like it did today, a new mobile application will tell drivers what's ahead before they're stuck.
PennDOT Press Officier Sean Brown says, "It provides any real-time information to the folks so they can really plan their trip and figure out where there's congestion to avoid those areas and get to where they're going quickly."
It was really important to PennDOT to make the travel alerts hands-free and eyes-free for the nearly 40,000 miles of road that PennDOT maintains, the Pennsylvania Turnpike and select New Jersey and West Virginia roadways.
Brown says, "One of our main responsibilities was making sure this isn't going to add to distractions on the roadway, which is a major causal factor in crashes."
The app is free to download and available to all motorists by searching "511PA" on your smart phone.

May 5, 2014

Luis Vasquez of Pocono Summit was sentenced today for murdering two co-workers in 2012.
A judge gave Vasquez 30 to 80 years in state prison.
Vasquez says the killings stemmed from an unpaid debt.
At today's sentencing we heard emotional testimony from all three families involved. Before the sentence, the defendant read a letter of apology for his actions, hoping for the judge's mercy.
"We're hoping this sentence would be less than what it was," said John McMahon, the defense attorney representing Vasquez.
In court, Vasquez was described as a loving father and brother. Family told the court he was quiet, hardworking. Before this event, officials say, Vasquez had no prior criminal history.
McMahon says, the judge took that into consideration in the sentence to lower the sententence, but the prosecution says Vasquez wasn't 100% honest about the events.
Micheal Mancuso, the prosecuting attorney in this case says they found a backpack belonging to Vasquez that included a forty five caliber pistol, several pairs of gloves and a change of clothes he used to account for the ones covered in blood. Mancuso says that evidence shows he had intentions to kill.
"He planned this ahead of time and I think ultimately the judge held that against him," said Mancuso.
Since the killings, Vasquez says he's asked for forgiveness and he hopes to one day become a pastor.
He'll be in state prison for 30-80 years.
"Mr. Vasquez is lucky given the fact that this originally was a death penalty case initially and he would've been facing the death penalty or life in prison," said McMahon.

May 5, 2014

There's no better way to learn about the environment than to be in the environment. That's exactly what local second and third graders got to do today, as the competition for the 26th Annual Carbon County Envirothon kicked off at the Environmental Education Center. Local students are tested on what they know about our area's natural resources.
The Envirothon, sponsored by The Lions Club internationally, starts in individual counties and Carbon is one of the few to offer the program to younger students. Chief Naturalist Susan Gallagher of the Carbon County Environmental Education Center says, "The winning team at the high school level will go on to compete in the state competition. The winner of the state competition will go on to compete in an international event."
The Envirothon continues the rest of this week for higher grades. They too will experience how their actions impact the environment.

May 5, 2014

34 Year old Chad Olm is charged with criminal homicide after accidentally shooting his nephew, Hunter Pedersen late Saturday afternoon. According to Police, Olm was showing his son and Hunter his collection of guns. Olm says he keeps his weapons unloaded, but didn't check the action to make sure the weapon was cleared. Police say, the uncle wanted to show Hunter the laser scope on it, and pointed the pistol at his nephews head. Hunter went to reach out for the pistol, when the gun accidentally went off, the bullet struck Hunter in the forehead - killing him. Hunter was a 5th grade student at Wallenpaupack North Elementary School, where the flags are at half staff and crisis counselors are on hand all week, to help students cope with the loss. Olm is being held at the Pike County Correctional facility on 250,000 dollars bail. The Pedersen family has set up a memorial fund in honor of their son Hunter.

May 2, 2014

Pennsylvania State Police celebrates its 109th birthday, but it's a bittersweet celebration. During a memorial service held today at Troop M Headquarters in Bethlehem, officials honored those who were killed in the line of duty. The names of the 94 fallen troopers were recited. Officials say "they will never be forgotten." PA State Police were the first uniform state police in the nation.

May 2, 2014

East Stroudsburg University has opened the doors to it's new women's center on campus.
Officials say, they're ready to serve students in a bigger and better.
Earlier this week, white house officials announced a series of actions to identify the scope of actions to identify the scope of problems on college campuses. To help prevent sexual assaults and to help prevent sexual assualts and to help schools respond effectively.
Robin Olson, The Chief of Police at ESU says they received a $150,000 grant
from the federal government to provide services, education and training students and staff.
"The likelihood of a individual being sexually assaulted on a college campus as a woman is one in four as a male it's one and 6. So when you take the numbers of those reported we have a vast difference between those two. The hope is to close that gap, " said Olson.
Patty Kashner says the assistant v.p. of student affairs says they have three main area of focus, feminism, providing resources to sexual assault victims and career counseling. In the new center there's a counseling room, kitchen, office space and rooms for other groups, related to women's issues.
Olson says the next step is bystander prevention. He says he and other school officials will be going to training next week.

May 2, 2014

In an ongoing effort to get drugs off the streets, The Wayne County Drug Task Force landed a major blow today. After a two month investigation, Kristopher Corey, Curtis Jaggers, Roseann Caridad, and Joseph Paul, all from Wayne County, were arrested on charges of selling cocaine and heroin. Corey's facing charges of selling heroin laced with Fentanyl, a chemical compound linked to overdoses across the state. All four suspects face a sentence carrying a maximum sentence of up to 15 years in prison.

May 2, 2014

Don't be surprised if a police officer pulls you over and searches your vehicle without a warrant. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has now adopted the federal standard of police only needing probable cause. Monroe County Deputy Chief Public Defender Robin Spishock says not much is changing despite people's concerns. Police could always do this if there were urgent circumstances. This just provides a tool for effiency in the fight against crime. Police can now take authority and avoid the wait time to search a vehicle. But if police don't cross their t's and dot their i's, there will still be consequences in court such as supressing the evidence.

May 1, 2014

State legislators held a public hearing yesterday in Harrisburg to discuss Senate Bill 76 that would relieve homeowners of school taxes.
Yesterday a bus load of realtors went to Harrisburg to support the bill.
While they want to eliminate school taxes for homeowners, the bill would raise sales and personal income taxes to cover schools costs.
State Representative Rosemary Brown says it's been a bipartisan effort to push the bill. Right now she says they have 13 democrats sponsoring the bill and 13 republicans.
If the bill makes it out of the senate, it will then go to the house for a vote. When any decision will be made has not been determined.

May 1, 2014

Mother Nature hit us hard this past season with a winter beat-down the Poconos hasn't seen in years. Monroe County School Districts had 11 snow days, numerous delays and some early dissmissals. As the snow kept piling up, the school year calendar fluctuated. Pennsylvania requires each district to have a certain amount of instructional time for students. But districts may qualify for Act 80 Exceptions in the case of inclement weather. The districts had their work cut out for them in dealing with such a choppy school schedule in rearranging student vacation time to fit requirements. The districts used Act 80 and pre-scheduled school holidays to help students get out for summer vacation as soon as possible. East Stroudsburg's last day of school is June 18th, Stroudsburg's is June 17th, Pocono Mountain's is June 19th and Pleasant Valley's is June 13th.

May 1, 2014

Firefighters from Tamaqua, Lansford, Summit Hill and Coaldale responded to reports of a fire at Hart Metals in Tamaqua late last night. Hart Metals is a magnesium powder manufacturer; the facility processes magnesium to create a lightweight structural metal. Last night a blaze started inside the facility. Police and firefighters closed US209 for a few hours while firefighters worked to clear the scene. Hart Metals General Manager Dave Rascavage tells TV 13 a small fire started inside one of their buildings. There are no reported injuries and no structural damage. Rascavage says the company is launching an internal investigation to figure out what went wrong.

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