2012-11-19 20:02:00 by Mark Williams / News Director
Suspicious Mocanaqua Fire
Another day... another suspicious fire in Mocanaqua. This time it happened Monday afternoon in a flood – damaged three unit apartment at 15 to 17 Railroad Street. Moments after the fire was reports... crews were at the scene... knocking the blaze down in a matter of minutes. Monday's fire is the the fifth suspicious blaze in the Mocanaqua – Shickshinny area in the past month.
A big treat for everyone this weekend... as the annual North Pole Express train ride take place. The event is being promoted by the Downtown Bloomsburg, Incorporated... with five trips on Saturday and three on Sunday.... according to DBI president, Tim Wagner. Departure takes place from the Sherwin – Williams Paint store.... which used to be the former Erie – Lackawanna train station on Market Street between 6th and 7th Streets. Tickets available at the Chamber of Commerce on Market Street or through www.ticketderby.com.
Many of us... an estimated 44 – million people nationwide... are getting ready to hit the road this Thanksgiving Holiday weekend. However, the Triple A's Jenny Robison says we won't be going as far this year than in previous years. And Robinson and the Triple A says many of us will be hitting the road... the airport or train station sometime Wednesday.
Two convenience store gas stations in the Hazleton area were the targets of stick up artists early Monday morning. Police say the first robbery took place at the Turkey Hill on Route 93 and the Airport Beltway... the second taking place at the Sunoco on Route 93 and Kiwanis Boulevard... near the Turkey Hill. But despite their proximity... police say the two are not related. Anyone with information on the stickups are to call State Police at Hazleton.
Columbia Co Taxes
If you're a taxpayer in Columbia County.... you'll be paying more property taxes when you get your bill later this year. It will be used to fund part of the county's $21 – million budget. Two reasons for the increase according to Commissioner David Kovach... the state keeps cutting money to counties.... and the loss of flood damaged property taken off the tax rolls. Meantime... the state has yet to pay a bill of a million dollars for the operation of the Children & Youth division from the first quarter of this year.
The Bloomsburg Area Flood Control Authority still may have some life after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers nixed a flood control project for the Town. The authority was formed in 2007 when there was hope for town wide flood protection, but with that opportunity gone.... Mayor Dan Knorr says the door opens for other avenues for the Authority. Just in the past few weeks.... the federal government and the state have allocated millions of dollars for the protection of Autoneum and Windsor Foods... two of the largest employers in Bloomsburg.
Ballots are being counted for a vote to authorize a strike by faculty and coaches at Bloomsburg University... as well as 13 other state owned schools of higher eduction. Kenn Marshall with the PA State System of Higher Education says a strike is not necessarily going to happen. Another bargaining session between state negotiators and the University's faculty and coaches is scheduled for December 11th.
Child Abuse Alleged
A North Center Township man was jailed after he was arrested for allegedly breaking the leg of his infant daughter. 18 – year old Andrew Hess has admitted twisting the leg of his 60 day old daughter... Elvira... in order to make her stop crying. The break was confirmed by doctor at Geisinger in Danville.... adding the child's leg was broken twice before. Hess is facing a long list of charges. The child is in shelter care.
There is one less truck in the parking lot of the Town of Bloomsburg's recycling center Monday morning. Sometime overnight Friday... someone made off with a '98 Dodge Ram pick up truck from the center on Patterson Drive. You can't miss it if you see it... since it has blue municipal tags and a recycling logo on both doors. If you have information about the theft call Bloomsburg Police.
Two members of Hazleton City Council are calling on Police Chief Frank DeAndrea to resign. Council members Jean Mope and Jack Mundie aren't happy that the chief went public that the department is undermanned and ill – equipped. The two said DeAndrea should have come to council before going public with his concerns. However, DeAndrea says he isn't going anywhere fast... since he is appointed to the job by Mayor Joe Yunizzi.
If you tried to purchase unleaded, regular gas at Sheetz convenience stores in Northeastern Pennsylvania over the weekend... including the one in Sugarloaf Township near Hazleton... you were out of luck. It seems problems at a refinery... coupled with the trickle down effect of Hurricane Sandy... put the stores in a bind. They either ran out of gas.... or were on the verge of running out. Many of the store were expecting deliveries of the product overnight.
Hazle Twp. Fire
Investigators want to find out how a fire started in a vacant double home in Hazle Township over the weekend. The blaze was spotted by a state trooper on patrol in the 800 block of Winters Avenue. The building was vacant due to foreclosure... but it's believed someone was living there despite the lack of water and electricity. Right now... authorities are leaning towards the start of the fire as accidental.
Who do those human remains belong to?? That's what State Police are trying to figure out after they were found in a wooded area near Nanticoke over the weekend. Right now... cops do not know how long the remains were in the woods... leaving that up to the medical examiner.
Saturday's 58-20 loss at Shippensburg in the NCAA playoffs ended the season for the Bloomsburg University football team. The Huskies finished with a 10-2 record with both losses coming to Shippensburg. However, Bloomsburg set a PSAC record for team rushing yards in a season.
In high school football two area teams are still alive in the post season. This Friday Danville will be at home against Mount Carmel in the District 4 Class AA final which you can hear on the WHLM Stations. Southern Columbia faces Dunmore at Valley View High School in a first round Class A state playoff game which you can hear on Classic Rock 103.5. Our coverage of both games starts at 6:30.
BU Women's Basketball
The Bloomsburg University women's basketball team improved their record to 2-0 with a 74-71 double overtime win at Lincoln University on Saturday. Monday night... the Huskies played an exhibition game at Villanova. The Huskies lost that game 78-38 to take a 2-1 record so far this season. You can hear the details from the match with Larry White in the WHLM Husky Post Game Report:
NFL / Sunday
In the NFL yesterday the Washington Redskins dominated the Philadelphia Eagles 31 to 6.... the New York Jets defeated the St. Louis Rams 27 to 13.... and the Baltimore Ravens defeated the the Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday night 13 to 10.
Jeff Gordon wins the NASCAR Cup Series Ford Eco Boost 400 at the Homestead / Miami Speedway... but Brad Keselowski wins the 2012 Cup Series Championship.