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Local News

Tuesday, January 3, 2012
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS

Nicole Donatone, who has a great devotion to country music, is pretty excited.

Donatone is entered in a national video competition in which she sings the Miranda Lambert cover, "The House That Built Me," and she's been getting a lot of votes.

The contest is through "Don Kingsley's Top 40 Countdown," a syndicated radio country show that's broadcast throughout the United States, and is sponsored by One Main Financial. It continues through Jan. 15.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Twenty defendants entered guilty pleas to criminal charges recently in Schuylkill County court and were sentenced by President Judge William E. Baldwin.

David J. Rich, 38, Mahanoy City, selling or furnishing alcoholic beverages to minors, placed on probation 12 months, and pay $50 to Criminal Justice Enhancement Account (CJEA). Rich was cited by Mahanoy City Officer Robert Romanick, in November 2010.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Changing of the guard took place today when the newly elected Schuylkill County Commissioners held their reorganization meeting at 10 a.m., at the courthouse in Pottsville. The political power shifts from Democratic to Republican party. The first public meeting will be held Wednesday at 10 a.m.

Commissioner Frank Staudenmeier, who was re-elected to his third term was elected chairman of the board, a position he held four years ago and served as the minority commissioner the last four years.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The newly appointed district attorney of Schuylkill County, Karen Byrnes Noon, who is the first female to hold this post, performed her first duties Tuesday morning in the Schuylkill County Courthouse in Pottsville by arraigning 44 defendants who have been charged with criminal offenses.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS

Copper thieves break into vacant houses, raid construction sites, and even climb cell towers to get their hands on the metal, which they sell to scrapyards.

Law enforcement authorities are blaming a recent spike in copper thefts on a still-struggling economy and increased value of the metal.

In January, 2006, the price of copper was about $2.06 a pound, according to Rachel Lees, senior analyst for the London Metal Exchange.

On Nov. 30, 2011, the price hit $3.36 a pound.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

At long last, skiers anxious to hit the slopes may have just hit pay dirt.

For weeks, unseasonable temperatures along with the absence of snow have conspired against skiers eager to get their fix on the mountain.

As evidenced by today's brisk temperatures, it appears that's all about to change, much to the delight of Blue Mountain Ski Area near Palmerton.

Even with temperatures far from conducive for skiing, visitors continued to turn out at the ski area, said Heidi Lutz, director of sales and marketing.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Gail Maholick/TIMES NEWS

Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will display plans on the rehabilitation of the Route 209 Thomas McCall Bridge and seeks the public's input at a meeting to be held Thursday, Jan. 5, at the Franklin Township Volunteer Fire Company.

The public officials meeting will begin at 6 p.m. followed by the open house plans display at 7 p.m.

The McCall Bridge, built in 1938, carries nearly 24,000 cars a day over the borough of Weissport, the Lehigh River, the Lehigh Canal and the Norfolk Southern rail line.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

REYNOLDSVILLE, Pa. (AP) – Authorities are blaming a snow squall for a 21-car pileup that closed Interstate 80 in western Pennsylvania for about eight hours.

The eastbound lanes reopened late Monday night after crews cleaned up the crash involving six tractor-trailers and 15 other vehicles in Washington Township, Jefferson County.

Seventeen people were reported injured. State police say several of those injured were in serious condition.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

If you have youngsters standing at the bus stop the next two mornings, be sure they are bundled-up.

The coldest weather of this winter season is arriving and with a light wind, the wind chill factors will be below zero.

The National Weather Service at Mount Holly, N.J. says the very cold weather will be short-lived and temperatures are expected to become seasonal again by Thursday.

The NWS says an Arctic cold front from the northwest will move across the area today, and cold pressure will build in behind the front into tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS

Donations were made by the Summit Hill Lions Club to both the Summit Hill Historical Society and the Summit Hill Shade Tree Commission. Tom Midas, left, of the Lions, presents a check to Maxine Vermillion of the historical society, while Mary Ann Szczecina, second from right, accepts a check from Lion Louis Vermillion.