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Local News

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Teachers in the Palmerton Area School District have a new four-year contract.

On a unanimous vote, the school board on Tuesday accepted a fact finder report from the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board.

Afterward, Palmerton Area Education Association President Tom Smelas said that the report has been agreed to by both parties.

"We have a contract," Smelas said. "It's been a long two-and-a-half years; both sides worked real hard, and this is the end result."

Smelas added, "A third party came in and gave a recommendation, and the two sides agreed to it."

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Firefighters from Lehighton, Mahoning Valley and Franklin Township battle a blaze at 357 Bridge St. in Lehighton Wednesday morning. The fire broke out just before midnight Tuesday. For more photos, see the gallery at tnonline.com.

A Lehighton family of four was displaced after a late-night fire tore through their Bridge Street home.

The home of John Johnson at 357 Bridge St. sustained major damage from the fire that started just before midnight.

Lehighton firefighters were assisted by crews from Mahoning Valley and Franklin Township, as well as Lehighton Ambulance. Firefighters remained on the scene through the early morning hours.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Students of the Month at Our Lady of the Angels Academy are from left, first row: Angelo Greek, Connor Penberth, Angelo Cerimele, Ethan Gardiner and Stephen Puza. Second row: Zachary Trubilla, Colin Rehnert, Sierra Bauer and Brayden Webb.

Nine students from Our Lady of the Angels Academy in Lansford were recently named "Students of the Month" for February. They were selected because they exhibited the virtue of tolerance. The following are quotes from each student.

Kindergarten, Angelo Cerimele: "I respect my friends and help them."

Grade 1, Connor Penberth: "I show respect and work toward telling the truth and bringing peace."

Grade 2, Angelo Greek: "I respect my friends and treat everyone the same. I wait and listen to what they say and don't judge them."

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Palmerton Borough will implement its street sweeping program on April 1.

Signs are posted on streets indicating the parking restrictions. Residents are asked to remember to check your sign, and remember the date when the street is to be cleaned.

Citizens are also reminded that the time change for the cleaning is the same as snow removal. Cars should be moved between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m., the evening before your scheduled sweeping day.

This will allow an early start for the borough's street sweeping crew.

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Wednesday, March 19, 2014
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Firefighters from four communities battled a dwelling fire at the Larry Griffith residence off Lauchnor Road in East Penn Township, Tuesday evening.

A vehicle fire reportedly spread to a modular home, heavily damaging it, in East Penn Township on Tuesday evening.

The fire happened at the residence of Larry Griffith, located off Lauchnor Road.

Griffith lives alone in the dwelling.

Fire Chief Cory Smith said there were no injuries.

Smith reported that a bed was being removed from a pickup truck when sparks, possibly from a torch, somehow caused the gas tank of the truck to explode.

The truck was destroyed.

Smith said it appears the flames spread to the roof of the home.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Two Carbon County men, who previously entered guilty pleas in sexual assault cases, were sentenced Tuesday in the county court to prison terms by Judge Steven R. Serfass.

State prison

Franklin Derr III, 23, of Lehighton, was sentenced to serve 14 to 36 months in a state prison on a charge of statutory sexual assault.

In a plea bargain charges of aggravated indecent assault, indecent assault of a person less than 16, corruption of a minor, and indecent assault were dropped.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Eckhart

A volunteer football coach in Palmerton who allegedly tried to take a video of a teenage girl changing clothes in a bathroom has been ousted from his position.

By a unanimous measure, the school board agreed on Tuesday to remove Rob Eckhart as a volunteer football coach, effective immediately.

He was a volunteer football coach for the past three seasons, and was active in helping students in all sports with weight training.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Creed

Jenna Karen Darlene Creed, a daughter of Thomas and Tracy Creed, has been named February's Guiding Star by the Concourse Club of Palmerton.

She has a brother, Thomas, and a sister, Tracy.

Jenna is a senior at Palmerton Area High School. She is the class vice president and a member of Student Council, Environmental Club and National Honor Society.

Her hobbies include snowboarding and socializing with friends. She also enjoys soccer and learning Spanish.

Her community activities include Special Olympics and tutoring at the Palmerton Library.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Chestnuthill and Hamilton townships are currently involved in a boundary dispute resulting from maps issued by the county's reassessment mapping project.

Alan Everett of the Hamilton Township supervisors said that the previous board had signed an agreement with Chestnuthill as to where the boundary was to be placed.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Lisa Price/TIMES NEWS Abby Billig, wearing leopard tights, playing the part of a domesticated cat, and Hannah Betz, playing the part of a hen, talk to the uglyduckling, played by Jake Beers.

Nearly everyone knows the Hans Christian Anderson story "The Ugly Duckling."

But not everyone knows the musical adaptation of the tale, a play called "Honk," which adds a few twists that aren't in the children's story. Students from Tamaqua Area School District will perform "Honk" at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the middle school auditorium.

They worked through a first dress rehearsal Monday.