A malfunctioning gas furnace has been ruled as the probable cause in the carbon monoxide poisoning deaths of three people in Northumberland County. 93 – year old Wayne Maurer... his 84 – year old wife Catherine... and their 43 – year old daughter Mary Jo were found dead in their Shamokin area home on Monday. It's believed they died sometime Saturday. Authorities say no carbon monoxide detectors were found inside the two story structure.
Bloomsburg Clean Up
The sound of people's lives... their work and their hopes... being placed in giant dumpsters filled West Main Street in Bloomsburg on Monday. It was the last day for folks on West Main to have flood related debris at curbside for removal by town crews. While the clean – up went along fairly smoothly... West Main Street resident Pat Sessions sat on her front porch watching the activity... as she took a break from her clean-up routine. She says she plans to move out of the area eventually. WHLM News found Tracy Cartwright using a rake to get residual trash to the curb. She talked about some dark days following September's flooding. It appears town crews will be spending time on Third Street Tuesday... getting trash off the curbs... into the street... to be placed in dumpsters by heavy equipment.
The Bloomsburg Chapter of the American Red Cross has revised it's damage estimates from last month's flooding downward. The chapter's Rita Inklovich says destroyed homes now number around 1100... down from their initial estimate of several thousand homes. In a related development... a FEMA spokesman says an estimated 2,100 people have been served by the agency's disaster relief center on Sawmill Road near Lightstreet. Spokespersonn Eugene Brezany says $6.2 million dollars has been handed out to flood victims for either repairs to their home... or to pay for temporary housing.
A flood – related meeting to be held in Shickshinny... in Luzerne County... tonight. It begins right after the Borough Council meeting at the fire hall on West Union Street.... and it involves representatives from FEMA... PEMA... the Small Business Administration... as well as the National Flood Insurance program. The representatives will be there to talk about last month's flooding... and how they plan to help community residents.
Fire investigators in Hazleton are still trying to figure out what sparked an apartment fire early Monday morning. Seventeen people were left homeless when fire broke out in the four unit apartment complex in the 500 block of Alter St. The fire started at the rear of the building... quickly spreading. Those people affected by the fire were helped by the American Red Cross.
Masser / Senior Expo
State Representative Curt Masser will hold his first – ever Senior Expo on Thursday, October 20th in Elysburg. The expo will feature 40 exhibitors providing information about programs and services. It will get underway at 10 AM at the Elysburg Fire Company on the 20th. Masser represents a portion of Columbia – Montour and Northumberland Counties.
With the first quarter of the fiscal year complete... State Revenue Secretary Dan Meuser says the state brought in $5.8 billion dollars. That's about 3.5% below what Governor Corbett's administration said was needed to support the state's $27 – billion dollar spending plan. And although... the revenue fell below expectations... the state took in $34 – million dollars more than it did in the first quarter of 2010.
Gas prices across northeast Pennsylvania continue to drop. The Triple – A Fuel Gauge report out Tuesday morning shows we're paying an average of $3.43 a gallon for self serve, unleaded regular. On Monday.... the average was $3.44 a gallon. A week ago... gas, on the average, was 6 cents a gallon higher.
A Marcellus Shale plan has been released by Governor Corbett.... based on the work of his advisory commission over the summer. The Governor's proposed impact fee on the Marcellus Shale Industry would be levied at the county level... 75% would stay in the local area...with 25% going to state agencies to deal with the impacts of natural gas drilling. Governor Corbett says his plan also enhances environmental standards.
A state Senate committee will hear testimony on a proposal to change the way Pennsylvania's 20 electoral votes will be counted in next year's presidential election. A top aide to Republican Gov. Tom Corbett will appear before the State Government Committee Tuesday... as will political scientists... good government advocates and political party officials. Mr. Corbett wants to replace the current, winner-take-all system for the presidential candidate who wins the statewide popular vote.
Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection says it will soon spray for mosquitoes in Montour... as well as Northumberland, Snyder and Union counties. They want to kill the insects which may carry the West Nile virus. It's all in response to Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee which dumped a lot of rain on the region... creating pools of water which are perfect places for mosquitoes to breed. The skeeters are present in the early evening... at dusk.