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Local News

Thursday, January 13, 2011
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS Mariann Kmetz

A familiar face at the Palmerton Area Library now has a new title. Mariann Kmetz has been named the new assistant director as of Jan. 1.

Kmetz will remain as the library's bookkeeper and patrons will continue seeing her helping at the front desk.

"I'm so excited about the new volunteer program that the library is initiating. We hope to have several new programs here at the library and are counting on volunteers to help with the success," says Kmetz.

Some of those new programs are:

Thursday, January 13, 2011
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Lehighton's Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic School is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. Seen here is the adjacent church, which is just one year older, during one of its early May Procession ceremonies.

Ss. Peter and Paul School, the first (and only) Catholic elementary school serving the Lehighton area, is celebrating its 125th anniversary later this month. To commemorate this milestone, Principal Sherry Sernak is coordinating a program that invites alumni and former staff to share their memories with the current school community.

"There's not a lot of history available on the school anywhere," Sernak said. "Since we can't find any written records, we decided to discover the history through the people whose lives were touched by the school."

Thursday, January 13, 2011
Andy Leibenguth/special to the times news Firefighters remove a wood pellet stove, the source of last evening's house fire in Coaldale.

After the homeowner reported smelling something burning, firefighters from Coaldale, Tamaqua, and Lansford responded to a house fire at 42 W. Howard Ave. in Coaldale yesterday evening around 6:30 p.m.

When firefighters arrived, they found the homeowner ripping away at his floor and wood pellet stove. They quickly removed the heavy stove and after ripping out parts of the wood floor, extinguished smoldering hot spots.

"The family was lucky it happened during the day, when the family was awake," Chief Richard Marek stated.

Thursday, January 13, 2011
TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS  Scott Hoppel, commercial sales manager, PenTeleData, discusses what the company does and how it stays abreast of the constant changes in technology with members of the Palmerton Area Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday.

In search of a fast and affordable connection to the Internet?

If so, the area's leading Internet and Data service provider for both home and work, PenTeleData, is just a phone call away.

Scott Hoppel, commercial sales manager, discussed what the company does and how it stays abreast of the constant changes in technology with members of the Palmerton Area Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday.

Hoppel said the partnership offers residential services that range from dial-up to high speed broadband cable modem and DSL.

Thursday, January 13, 2011
Andrew Leibenguth/Special to the times news

Sheryl Beltz, co-proprietor of the Tamaqua Restaurant at the Station, shovels snow outside the Tamaqua Train Station. With no trains in the vicinity, the pickup truck in the left background was able to plow over the tracks.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

McCann School of Business and Technology recently signed an articulation agreement with the Pennsylvania College of Technology (Penn College).

The new contract enables McCann graduates with an Associate in Specialized Business Degree in Paralegal to transfer to Penn College to complete the requirements for the Bachelor of Science Degree in Legal Assistant – Paralegal Studies.

Penn College is an affiliate of Penn State, and was just voted as one of the top 10 best public four-year colleges in the Northern Region of the United States, according to U.S. News and World Report.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Lansford Borough is plowing snow today and Friday, and police want to remind residents of the parking rules.

Workers today began plowing the odd side of the streets (the north and east sides). Beginning at 8 a.m. Friday, plowing will be done on the even side of the streets (the south and west sides). Vehicles are to be moved or they will be ticketed.

Police further remind residents that it is illegal to put snow in the street during or after a snowstorm. It is also illegal to place piles of snow within 20 feet of an intersection or in excess of 5 feet high.

Thursday, January 13, 2011
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Lehighton borough part-time employees Ren Wentz, left, and Dan Snyder remove ceiling tile from former Wal-Mart store along Route 443 in Mahoning Township. The tile and grid will be utilized in the new Lehighton Police Station.

About 5,000 square feet of ceiling tile and numerous bathroom stall dividers at the vacated Wal-Mart Store in Mahoning Township will be utilized by Lehighton borough.

Alton Steigerwalt, workforce supervisor for Lehighton borough, said the tiles and stalls will be used on the second floor of the new police station and the community center in Lehighton.

The building is now owned by Lowe's Home Improvement Center. Steigerwalt said when he asked Lowe's for the ceiling tiles, a representative of the store told him, "Take what you want."

Thursday, January 13, 2011
CONTRIBUTED PHOTO Charred wood and cinder block at Hill's Machine Shop, 2 Dock St., Lansford.

Lansford police are investigating an attempted arson at a Dock Street building.

Kenny Hill, owner of Hill's machine shop, 2 Dock St., said his lot was being plowed and the driver saw a large pile wood that was charred. Cinder block in the building was also charred. The damage was reported Jan. 7, police said.

It is unknown when the attempted arson occurred. Anyone with information concerning this incident is asked to call police at (570) 645-5844.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Schuylkill County Commissioners had to cancel their public meeting Wednesday morning as the opening the courthouse was delayed for two hours due to the winter snow storm.

Also cancelled was the monthly Schuylkill County Employees Retirement Board which usually follows the commissioners meeting.

Both have been rescheduled for next Wednesday. The commissioners will hold their public meeting at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 12, in the board room in the basement of the courthouse building in Pottsville and the retirement board meeting will follow.