Weather Watches Issued
The weather is turning a bit volatile as we approach the Independence weekend. The National Weather Service in State College has issued a severe thunderstorm watch for most... if not all of the WHLM listening area. That includes Columbia, Montour and Northumberland Counties. Forecasters say a strong line of thunderstorms are developing and are moving east. The watch remains in effect through 0 O'clock Friday night. At the same time... a flash flood watch is in effect until 9 O'clock. We're following the storms as they march their way across the Commonwealth.
Former High School Football Coach Passes
AN area high school football coaching legend has died. WHLM's Jim Doyle is reporting that Joe Diminick... also known as “Jazz...” passed away overnight. Diminick was the head coach at Mount Carmel for 31 years. His teams won 267 games and lost only 81. When he retired in 1992, he was the state's winningest coach. Mr. Diminik was 88 years old.
A State Police firemarshal has been called in to determine the cause of a garage fire... discovered shortly before 6 this morning in the 400 – block of North Third Street in Catawissa. First due firemen finding the garage fully involved... calling for mutual aid from Montour and Hemlock Townships... as well as Numidia. No word as to how long the investigation will take.
It's going to be a long and emotional day for congressman Lou Barletta of Hazleton. He's in McAllen, Texas to take a look at the flow of undocumented kids... who are illegal aliens... coming across the U.S. Border from Mexico. Mr. Barletta is will testify Thursday afternoon before a committee of the Homeland Security Administration meeting in McAllen.
The tone changed on the pension debate in the legislature on Wednesday, even though no final vote has been taken. Shortly after Governor Tom Corbett held a news conference taking the house to task for sending the pension bill back to committee, the House majority leader tried to undo that vote. As a rules debate continued, the committee chair called a meeting of the panel and voted the bill back to the floor. Majority leader Mike Turzai says there will be important discussions and they'll retake the issue this fall. Governor Corbett commended the action to vote the bill back.
There are plenty of professional fireworks displays this weekend up and down the Susquehanna Valley. But, for Bridgett Coolbaugh with the Berwick Fire Department... firefighters are worried about backyard displays which could go horribly wrong. For the most part... most fireworks are illegal in Pennsylvania.
However, the Pennsylvania State Police web site says ground and hand – held sparklers... novelty and toy caps are allowed to be purchased and used under the law
As we told you last month... Allentown – based PPL plans to spin off of it's electrical generating business... including the Susquehanna Nuclear Power plant in Salem Township... combing it with Riverstone Holdings... forming Talen Energy. The issue was the crux of a public hearing held Wednesday in Rockville, Maryland by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Many of the current PPL workers at the Susquehanna site are expected to transition... and become Talen Energy employees...
Penny Lenig - Zerby
The former superintendent of the Benton Area School District thought she had a job in the Harrisburg area... but she doesn't anymore. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Thursday's edition... the board of the Steelton – Highspire School District hired Penny Lenig – Zerby last month to be a high school principal. But this week... the school board reversed the decision. Lenig – Zerby was suspended as Benton Superintendent two months ago following a wild ride for students on a school bus will an allegedly intoxicated driver behind the wheel. She has officially cut her ties with the district.
A new report suggests Pennsylvania is at a disadvantage for its decision not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. The report comes from the President's Council of Economic Advisors. It shows that failing to offer Medicaid coverage to those without health insurance is costing the state more than $8 – billion in federal support between now and fiscal year 2017. The study also says expansion would create an additional 35,000 jobs and reduce catastrophic expenses for close to 14,000 Pennsylvanians.
Food poisoning incidents usually surge in the warmer summer months. Fourth of July weekend is a big time for cookouts and picnics. That's why its important to properly clean, separate, cook and chill your foods to avoid bacteria that can make people sick. The USDA says the elderly, pregnant women, young children and people with compromised immune systems are especially at risk. It's estimated one in six Americans get sick from some form of food poisoning each year.
Congressman Lou Barletta of Hazleton has received the “Legislator of the Year” Award from the National Volunteer Fire Council. It's for his work in protecting volunteer fire companies from Obamacare. The award represents Barletta’s success in preventing volunteer fire companies and emergency response agencies from incurring costs and fines under Obamacare that could have caused them to close their doors.
Mixed revenue figures coming from Harrisburg this week. The state treasury says PA collected $2.8 – billion in general fund revenue in June. Thats $23 – million more than expected... but is off a half – billion dollars for the year... or 1.7%. That money used to finance the closing days of the 2013 – 2014 budget plan.
The Philadelphia Phillies continue their loosing ways... now having lost six games in a row. The Phil's were blanked Wednesday night by the Miami Marlins 5 to 0. The three game set concludes Thursday night with a 6:05 start. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 5:30.
Other MLB Games....
In other games last night...the Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 5 to 1... the Atlanta Braves downed the New York Mets 3 to 1... and it was the Tampa Bay Rays over the New York Yankees 6 to 3.
The upsets continued at the Wimbledon tennis tournament Wednesday. Defending men's champ Andy Murray was defeated in straight sets by Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria.