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January 2010

Less safe on Obama's watch

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Dear Editor:

As a former naval intelligence officer on a high level staff (Top Secret Cryptographic clearance), I agree with President Obama that the breach of security associated with the Detroit-bound airliner is "totally unacceptable". The warning signs were there, but the intelligence community failed to recognize, analyze and disseminate the information. This is the same type of failure which led to the 9/11 attacks and the Ft. Hood massacre.

State leaders have failed to protect us from the electricity deregulation fiasco

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Dear Editor:

Pennsylvania decision-makers' poor understanding of the electricity industry led them into a big mistake 13 years ago: giving up the state's authority to control electricity-generation prices. Consumers were promised a competitive retail electricity market that would restrain prices. The warnings that such a market would not develop went unheeded, but they turned out to be correct.

Three vehicle crash in Schuylkill

Saturday, January 30, 2010

State police at Schuylkill Haven reported investigating a three vehicle crash about 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 27, along Molleystown Road in Tremont Township, Schuylkill County.

Tamaqua Area School District to conduct kindergarten registration

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Kindergarten registration in the Tamaqua Area School District will be held on March 15, 16 and 17 at the Tamaqua Elementary School and March 18 at the West Penn Elementary School. Students residing in Walker and Schuylkill Townships will register on March 15, students within the Borough of Tamaqua will register on March 16 and students residing in Rush Township will register on March 17.

Blue Mt. Health System lists new partnership

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Blue Mountain Health System is pleased to announce a partnership with Foundation Radiology Group (FRG), a premier provider of diagnostic imaging professional services located in Pittsburgh.

Foundation Radiology Group provides full-service radiology solutions for hospitals and imaging centers through a mix of on-site and tele-radiology services.

FRG features a world-class physician group, state-of-the-art technology solutions and subspecialty services including pediatric, neurologic, mammography and interventional practice specialties.

Two teens cited in Monroe

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Two 17-year-old males from Blakeslee have been cited for an incident in Monroe County.

Pocono Mountain Regional police said they were notified on Jan. 25 by the Monroe County Litter Control of a scattering of rubbish incident that occurred on Dec. 26, 2009, in Stone Crest development in Tunkhannock Township. The large area of rubbish was located in the lake area of the development.

Through an investigation the two teens were found to be responsible for the incident, police said. Both were cited for scattering rubbish.

Teen facing threats charge

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A Monroe County teen is facing a charge of terroristic threats.

State police at Fern Ridge said Justin Marcus Campbell, 19, of Effort, will be charged following an incident about 1 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 25, at Kinsley Market, located along SR209, in Brodheadsville, Chestnuthill Township.

Troopers allege that Campbell entered into an altercation with a 48-year-old male from Palmerton during which he pulled a firearm and held it at his side. Troopers declined to name the victim.

Weird stories

Saturday, January 30, 2010

By JIM ZBICK

jzbick@tnonline.com

Maybe it was the cold winter that numbed the senses, or the pressures of work and putting food on the table that drove some to desperation, but some weird news stories surfaced in the early weeks of 1910.

When I grow up

Saturday, January 30, 2010

"What do you want to be when you grow up?"

How many times were we asked that question as kids? It's kind of funny to remember some of our answers. I bet most of us haven't followed through on those childhood ambitions.

Of course, kids think big and have some pretty sophisticated career plans. We all had friends who had dreams of being a princess, or a cowboy, or a professional wrestler. As we get older, we have to get serious. There aren't too many degree programs out there for pro wrestlers. So with that hope dashed, it's time to move on to Plan B.

On this date

Saturday, January 30, 2010

January 30, 1969

It's quiet now at Pennsylvania Power & Light Company's Hauto Steam Electric Station near Hometown. As of today, the generating units of the Hauto power plant, totaling 78,000 kilowatts, were stilled, terminating 56 years of electric power generation at the site. "It was an old an inefficient plant," said John Chaplinsky, PP&L's Community Service Manager-Northeast Division. "Like an old car, it had become costly to operate."

Boy Scouts recognized as tree farmers

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Hawk Mountain Scout Reservation, near Summit Station, is recognized as a certified tree farmer in the American Tree Farm System. The Boy Scout's 670-acre tree farm is managed for recreation, wood, water and wildlife.

The American Tree Farm System is an industry-sponsored program that promotes and encourages the wise use and management of large and small forests for a multitude of benefits, including wood, water, wildlife and recreation.

Bereavement group

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Jim Thorpe

The Bereavement Group of St. Joseph Church, Jim Thorpe, will meet on Monday, Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. in the church rectory at 526 North St.

For more information, call the rectory at (570) 325-3731.

JT 'spurts' to victory

Saturday, January 30, 2010
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Jim Thorpe’s Rashid Epps (21) pump fakes to get Panther Valley’s Kyle Picht into the air.
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Jim Thorpe’s Rashid Epps (21) pump fakes to get Panther Valley’s Kyle Picht into the air.

Jim Thorpe's relentless style of play and its offensive firepower make it a ticking time bomb.

The Olympians are an explosion ready to happen. Their myriad of weapons and frenetic pace can produce game-changing runs in the blink of an eye.

Thorpe has what CBS' basketball analyst Clark Kellogg calls "spurtability."

One of those spurts was the difference on Friday night as Jim Thorpe beat Panther Valley, 65-51, in a critical Schuylkill League Division I showdown.

Canceling the pity-party

Saturday, January 30, 2010

So I'm on my way to work and feeling sorry for myself.

Since we last talked, I turned another year older, my back is killing me again and I'm feeling every bit my age and more.

But then I heard something on the radio and I received a couple emails that made me feel ashamed of my self-pity party I was indulging in.

The gist is "Feeling unappreciated? World got you down? Things got ya down? Well then, consider these..."

An article in The New York Times with the headline: "Worker dead at desk for five days."

How times have changed

Saturday, January 30, 2010

By BOB URBAN

rurban@tnonline.com

How times change.

Back when I was in high school, during the late 1950s and early 60s, there was an English Lit teacher at Coaldale High School by the name of Sam Pascoe.

Sam was a life-long educator and an avid outdoorsman. He lived on the same block as me, on Howard Avenue. And it wasn't unusual to see Sam, decked out in his hunting gear, walking with his shotgun and trusty Beagle past my house.

A week in the news

Saturday, January 30, 2010

This isn't a good week for Sandusky, Ohio folks as two bizarre stories made the Associated Press wire.

n the "Meteor Falling on Head" file, a 47 year old woman named Deborah McDonald left a bar where she was with a group who was celebrating her winning an $8,000 prize in an Ohio lottery game show and was struck and killed by a car while she was walking on the side of a road.

Slippery road causes crash

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A slippery road surface was blamed for a two vehicle crash in Schuylkill County that was reported about 7:50 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28, along Mill Creek Ave., in Norwegian Township.

State police at Schuylkill Haven said Tamara J. Dragna, 34, of Pottsville, was driving a 2000 Toyota 4Runner eastbound and Julianne Kupchinsky, 56, of New Philadelphia, was operating a 2006 Mercury Montego Preimer westbound.

Dragna was traveling up hill when her vehicle began to slid on the slippery surface and entered the westbound lane where it struck the Montego.

Pedestrian struck in Monroe accident

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A pedestrian was struck by a pickup truck in a Monroe County accident.

Pocono Mountain Regional police said the incident occurred about 7:14 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 27, along Industrial Drive in Mt. Pocono. Police said Ronald Barzydlo, 53, of Cresco, was driving a 2009 Toyota Tacoma toward SR940 while Luz Rivera, 42, of Tobyhanna, was walking in the same direction. Police said it is not known if Rivera tripped or stepped out into the lane of travel but she was struck by the truck.

Casting Kids event at Show

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A chance to advance to the statewide Casting Kids Championship and win cash and prizes will be at stake when the Capital City Bassmasters conducts its 16th annual Casting Kids Event, Sunday, Feb. 7, at the Eastern Sports and Outdoor at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex, Harrisburg.

Competition will be held for age groups 7-10, 11-13 and 14-17 in the seminar area located off of the Main Exhibition Hall next to the Chevrolet truck display. This year's event is sponsored by the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show, and the age groups have been modified to allow more youth to participate.

Reader's Turn

Saturday, January 30, 2010
Corrinn Stauffer, Palmerton - "I would like to be a make-up artist. It would really be fun to put make-up on kids and women."

What would you like to be when you grow up? And why?

Mischief incidents probed in Monroe

Saturday, January 30, 2010

State police at Fern Ridge are investigating two acts of criminal mischief, both occurring at locations in Monroe County.

James Pecora, 24, of Albrightsville, reported someone entered his unlocked 1998 Chrysler Sebring and damaged wiring inside. The incident occurred at the Mount Effort Plaza parking lot in Effort, Chestnuthill Township, sometime between 4 a.m. and 5:15 p.m on Wednesday, Jan. 27.

N'western cruises

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Northwestern needs every win it can to climb back over .500 and secure a district playoff spot. That's why the Tigers had to avoid a trap game against a one-win Pen Argyl team Friday night in New Tripoli.

The best way to do it was to jump out to an early lead and take away any hope the Knights might have had to pull off an upset.

Northwestern used a 20-point run through the first quarter and the beginning of the second en route to a 65-40 win.

Hit and run accident probed

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Mahoning Township police are investigating a two-vehicle crash Wednesday along SR209 and Center Street.

The accident happened at 3:21 p.m. in the area of East Coast Medical Service, said Chief Kenneth J. Barnes.

PennDOT plans work on two bridges along Penn Forest Road

Friday, January 29, 2010
ELSA KERSCHNER/TIMES NEWS PennDOT's Todd Smeltz talks about the bridge plan for Penn Forest Township.
ELSA KERSCHNER/TIMES NEWS PennDOT's Todd Smeltz talks about the bridge plan for Penn Forest Township.

PennDOT held an informational meeting on Wednesday in the Towamensing municipal building to talk to residents about the two bridges that will be worked on. They are both along Penn Forest Road with one, the southern bridge, in Towamensing Township and the northern one in Penn Forest Township.

The southern bridge, the larger one at 53 feet, is between the Penn Forest and Wild Creek reservoirs. This bridge is scheduled for complete replacement.

Jim Thorpe news

Friday, January 29, 2010

Tryouts for the Jim Thorpe Drama Club production of "West Side Story" will take place on Saturday, Jan. 30, at 1 p.m. at the high school. The production is open to anyone 13 years of age and older. The production will be held on April 30, and May 1. For more information contact Natalie Kmetz, (570) 325-4923.

Bereavement Group

The bereavement group of St. Joseph's Church, will meet on Monday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m. in the rectory, 526 North Street. The group is open to anyone and if you have questions you may call the rectory office at (570) 325-3731.

10 TIMES NEWS wrestlers in Off The Mat State rankings

Friday, January 29, 2010

Ten wrestlers from THE TIMES NEWS coverage area are ranked among the top 16 in their respectrive weight classes in this week's Off The Mat Class AA State Rankings compiled by Mark Dugan of Clearfield.

Northern Lehigh has three ranked wrestlers while Lehighton and Tamaqua have two each and Jim Thorpe, Northwestern and Panther Valley one apiece.

103 - Nick O'Donnell, Panther Valley (15th)

112 - Dylan Long, Northwestern (6th)

130 - Kolby Mashack, Tamaqua (5th)

140 - Nikko Stevens, Northern Lehigh (15th)

Jim Thorpe pulls away from Panthers

Friday, January 29, 2010
bob ford/times news Jim Thorpe's Celeste Robinson (left) tries to get around Panther Valley defender Abby Markovich.
bob ford/times news Jim Thorpe's Celeste Robinson (left) tries to get around Panther Valley defender Abby Markovich.

The Jim Thorpe girls' basketball team had no trouble forcing Panther Valley turnovers.

Once the Olympians started cashing in on them, they pulled away for a 55-40 Schuylkill League victory.

"We talked at halftime about turnovers and points off turnovers," said Jim Thorpe coach Rob Kovac. "We were unhappy with the fact that we weren't scoring off of those turnovers. Finally, we got some buckets to drop in the second half."

The Olympians' full court press created havoc up-and-down the court, but the Panthers still managed to stay within reach in the first half.

Panther Valley news

Friday, January 29, 2010

Catholic schools

Our Lady of the Angels Academy, Lansford, which serves families in Coaldale, Lansford, Nesquehoning and Summit Hill, will celebrate Catholic Schools Week beginning Sunday, Jan. 31.

The theme of the week is "Dividends for Life."

The weeklong ceremonies will begin with an open house program from noon to 2 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 31, in St. Katharine Drexel Catholic Church, Lansford.

On Monday, Feb. 1, appreciation will be extended to the school's "Senior Angels" and community helpers during a program from 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Panther Valley man protests water authority billing process

Friday, January 29, 2010

A Panther Valley man is upset with the Lansford-Coaldale Joint Water Authority because its policy to bill customers who have meters installed, regardless of whether the service is on.

Chad Warman is also upset because, he said, the authority turned off service to the house he rents because he didn't pay his bill on time. He was supposed to have a 30 day time period to pay, but the service was turned off much sooner, he said. In fact, it was turned off in the morning of the day he had arranged with the authority to pay the bill.

Court orders company to pay $1.3 million penalty for underground tank violations

Friday, January 29, 2010

The owner of two former gas stations in northeast Pennsylvania has learned the cost for not cleaning up underground fuel storage tanks.

New York-based Century Oil Acquisition Corp. now must pay a $1.3 million federal court judgment, after failing to cleanup and come into compliance with a 2007 EPA order assessing a $193,538 penalty and requiring the closure of underground storage tanks (USTs) at two former Texaco stations in Stroudsburg and Scotrun.

Resident wants line changed in front of mother's home

Friday, January 29, 2010

A line on Route 209 in the Jamestown area may have been placed in the wrong location according to a Mahoning Township resident's son who came to ask supervisors for their assistance in having PennDOT move the line to provide room to park a car to help his elderly mother.

"I have an 80 year old mother with respiratory problems and when we park in front of our house now we are over the white line and on the road," said resident Todd Weaver who informed supervisors that at one time he believed the line was further away from the curb in front of his mother's house.