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Wednesday January 29 2014

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WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 29, 2013

NURSES PLAN STRIKE

IN A NEWS RELEASE SENT OUT YESTERDAY, UPMC ALTOONA OFFICIALS SAID THEY ARE DISAPPOINTED TO LEARN THAT THE REGISTERED NURSES UNION IS PLANNING A ONE DAY STRIKE ON FEBRUARY 11TH. THEY CALL THEIR LAST, BEST, AND FINAL OFFER, WHICH THE UNION FAILED TO RATIFY, FAIR AND FINANCIALLY PRUDENT. IN THE EVENT OF A STRIKE, SERVICES WILL CONTINUE WITHOUT INTERRUPTION AND THE HOSPITAL WILL BE FULLY STAFFED WITH PENNSYLVANIA-LICENSED REGISTERED NURSES. OFFICIALS ALSO SAY UPMC HAS DONE EVERYTHING REASONABLE TO FIND COMMON GROUND AND REACH AN AGREEMENT WITH THE UNION.

GAMESA CLOSING

62 PEOPLE WILL LOSE THEIR JOBS WHEN THE GAMESA PLANT IN CAMBRIA TOWNSHIP CLOSES IN MARCH. SPOKESMAN KURT KNAUS SAYS THE DECISION IS DRIVEN BY A SHIFT IN THE CUSTOMER MARKET FROM PENNSYLVANIA AND THE MIDWEST INTO THE SOUTHWEST. THE MAJORITY OF THE WIND TURBINE BLADES WILL BE PRODUCED BY OTHER SUPPLIERS AND THEN INSTALLED BY GAMESA.

MORE DANGEROUS COLD

AT THE DIRECTION OF GOVERNOR TOM CORBETT, PENNDOT HAS EXTENDED THE TEMPORARY WAIVER ON CERTAIN RESTRICTIONS ON COMMERCIAL DRIVERS TO ALLOW FOR CONTINUED SMOOTH DELIVERY OF HEATING OIL AND PROPANE GAS DURING THE BITTERLY COLD WEATHER. THE WAIVER, FIRST ISSUED JANUARY 10TH, EXTENDS THE LIMITS ON HOURS OF SERVICE FOR FUEL DELIVERY DRIVERS. INSTEAD OF 11 HOURS, DRIVERS CAN NOW BE ON THE JOB FOR 14 HOURS. EXEMPTION IS ALSO GRANTED FROM THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE 60/70-HOUR LIMITS RULE THROUGH FEBRUARY 11TH OR UNTIL THE EMERGENCY CONDITIONS END.

ACCUSED KIDNAPPER ARRESTED

BELINDA HANCOCK HAS BEEN ARRESTED IN WASHINGTON D-C. SHE’S ACCUSED OF MOVING TO THE CAPITAL AND TAKING HER 3 YEAR OLD GOD-DAUGHTER FROM JOHNSTOWN AROUND CHRISTMAS TIME. KAYADA MARTIN WAS RETURNED TO HER FAMILY LAST WEEK. HANCOCK IS CHARGED WITH KIDNAPPING AND INTERFERING WITH THE CUSTODY OF A CHILD.

ATTEMPTED KIDNAPPING AT PENN STATE

PENN STATE POLICE ARE INVESTIGATING AN ALLEGED KIDNAPPING THAT HAPPENED ABOUT 1AM SATURDAY NEAR SIMMONS HALL ON SHORTLIDGE ROAD. ON TUESDAY, A WOMAN REPORTED THAT A GROUP OF COLLEGE-AGE MEN WITH SCARVES OVER THEIR FACES GRABBED HER OFF THE SIDEWALK AND DROVE OFF IN A DARK COLORED SEDAN. THEY PULLED OVER OFF CAMPUS AND THE MEN TRIED TO INDECENTLY ASSAULT THE WOMAN, BUT SHE WAS ABLE TO ESCAPE AND RUN FOR HELP. POLICE SAY STUDENTS SHOULD NOT WALK ALONE. INSTEAD CALL THE SAFE WALK PROGRAM FOR AN ESCORT OR USE THE BUDDY SYSTEM. CENTRE COUNTY CRIMESTOPPERS IS OFFERING A REWARD OF UP TO 1-THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR INFORMATION LEADING TO AN ARREST.

DRIVER PLEADS NOT GUILTY IN DOUBLE FATALITY

IN CAMBRIA COUNTY COURT YESTERDAY, 20 YEAR OLD AUSTIN MOLINICH OF NANTY GLO PLEADED NOT GUILTY TO 2 COUNTS OF VEHICULAR HOMICIDE. HE’S CHARGED WITH TEXTING WHILE DRIVING IN RICHLAND TOWNSHIP IN JUNE OF 2012. MOLINICH’S PICKUP COLLIDED WITH ANOTHER TRUCK, KILLING 71 YEAR OLD DONALD EVANS OF CONEMAUGH TOWNSHIP AND HIS GRANDAUGHTER, 19 YEAR OLD CASSANDRA SINGER OF NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY. MOLINICH TOLD POLICE HE WAS DISTRACTED BY A BIRD THAT HIT HIS WINDSHIELD.

DOGS ABUSED

POLICE PLAN TO FILE ANIMAL CRUELTY CHARGES AGAINST 31 YEAR OLD MATTHEW GIBALA OF SOUTH FORK WHO IS ACCUSED OF ABUSING 2 DOGS. STATE POLICE AT EBENSBURG SAY GIBALA ABUSED A SMALL FEMALE MINI-PINCHER AND REPEATEDLY KICKED, PUNCHED AND STEPPED ON THE DOG’S NECK…THEN SLAMMED THE DOG’S HEAD INTO THE SIDE OF THE HOUSE. THE INCIDENT WAS RECORDED ON VIDEO AND HAPPENED IN FRONT OF GIBALA’S 3 YOUNG CHILDREN. THE MINI-PINCHER AND ANOTHER MIX-BREED DOG WERE REMOVED FROM THE HOME AND BOTH SHOWED INJURIES CONSISTENT WITH ABUSE.

SPECIAL ELECTION

ABOUT 15 PERCENT OF THE REGISTERED VOTERS IN PARTS OF BEDFORD, FULTON AND HUNTINGDON COUNTIES BRAVED THE COLD AND WENT TO THE POLLS FOR YESTERDAY’S SPECIAL ELECTION. BEDFORD MINISTER JESSE TOPPER WON WITH 39-HUNDRED-21 UNOFFICIAL VOTES COMPARED TO DEMOCRAT BARBARA BARRON WHO GOT 719 VOTES. TOPPER WILL FILL THE SEAT OF LATE STATE REPRESENTATIVE DICK HESS THROUGH NOVEMBER 30. AND HE PLANS TO RUN FOR A FULL TERM.

FRANKLIN GOES TO WASHINGTON

NEW PENN STATE FOOTBALL COACH JAMES FRANKLIN ATTENDED LAST NIGHT’S STATE OF THE UNION SPEECH IN WASHINGTON D.C. AS THE GUEST OF STATE REPRESENTATIVE GLENN THOMPSON. FRANKLIN WAS HOPING TO GET HIS PICTURE TAKEN WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA. NO WORD IF HE DID. AND HE SAYS HE’D ALSO LIKE TO GET THE FIRST COUPLE TO A GAME AT BEAVER STADIUM NEXT SEASON. LAST WEEK, THOMPSON ANNOUNCED HIS PLANS TO RUN FOR RE-ELECTION, REPRESENTING THE 5TH DISTRICT.

GAS PRICES

TRIPLE A FUEL GAUGE SAYS WESTERN PA GAS PRICES FELL JUST A FRACTION OF A CENT, REMAINING AT $3.52 THIS WEEK. TODAY’S NATIONAL AVERAGE IS $3.28, THE SAME PRICE AS LAST WEEK…3 CENTS LESS THAN ONE MONTH AGO…AND 7 CENTS LESS THAN THE SAME DATE LAST YEAR. ALTOONA DRIVERS STILL HAVE TO PAY $3.59.