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Local News

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Funding cutbacks for highway construction in Pennsylvania, announced by the state Transportation Commission this week, will not affect the proposed Lehighton bypass project for Route 209, the Times News has learned.

Thomas Shaughnesey, Carbon County Planning Commission director, was informed yesterday that the budget cut will only imperil projects funded entirely by the state.

Thursday, May 8, 2014
TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS Former National Football League player Joe Ehrmann, left, and Jim Tkach, of theBo Tkach Foundation at "An Evening with Joe Ehrmann" held Wednesday at Palmerton Area High School. The event was sponsored by the Bo Tkach Foundation.

When Joe Ehrmann speaks, people listen.

A crowd of about 40 attended "An Evening with Joe Ehrmann" Wednesday at Palmerton Area High School.

The free motivational speech to spur students to believe in themselves was sponsored by the Bo Tkach Foundation.

Jim Tkach, of the foundation, thanked the audience for attending the event.

Tkach then gave a sneak-peek as to what makes Ehrmann, a former pro-football player, the successful person that he is.

"He's about understanding ourselves," Tkach said. "He's about love."

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A Carbon County woman who led police on a 12-mile high-speed chase last month has had her charges bound over to Carbon County Court.

Michelle Kobal, 44, of Lehighton, was scheduled to have a preliminary hearing Wednesday before District Judge William Kissner of Palmerton.

Instead, Kobal opted to waive her right to the hearing for a stipulation to a guilty plea, and will appear for a pretrial status conference at 1 p.m. May 29 in the district attorney's office at the courthouse in Jim Thorpe.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

STROUDSBURG (AP) The northeastern Pennsylvania community where a gunman fatally shot three people during a municipal meeting will use a state grant to construct a new township building.

The Pocono Record said the decision announced Tuesday night by Ross Township supervisors ends months of discussion about how to move forward after the slayings at the current municipal building last August.

Rockne Newell is charged with killing three people because of a long feud with township officials over his junk-strewn property.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Penn Forest supervisors turned down a grant for a garbage compactor at their meeting Monday night.

Supervisor Judy Knappenburger notified those present that the township had been successful in their seeking of a 904 grant for $217,000 for a garbage compactor which would compact recycling items into cubes which would then be sold. The grant would provide the funds for the 1, 2, 3 compactor(s) and the concrete pad to be placed at the transfer station. The only cost to the township would be $23,000 for the electric supply, as well as additional manpower.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

In response to requests by residents over increased coal truck traffic on local roads, Schuylkill Township supervisors have dusted off a 36-year-old court order and given it a close read. During the meeting Wednesday, the supervisors voted to contact the coal company to let them know they'd like to review the court order.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

After four and a half years of negotiating, Schuylkill County commissioners on Wednesday signed contracts with three branches of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees unions.

The contracts cover 91 courthouse employees, 119 employees at the county nursing home at Rest Haven, and 27 employees at the Office of Senior Services.

The contracts, which run from 2011 through 2016, offer modest wage increases and double the cost of employee contributions to health benefits.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Schuylkill County will save $24,930 over three years by switching insurance coverage for employees for life, accidental death/dismemberment and long-term care.

Commissioners on Wednesday approved a contract with One America for life, accidental death and dismemberment, and long-term disability coverage.

The contract will be in effect for eligible employees as of July 1.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Ranger Rick Club will meet from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday at Carbon County Environmental Education Center.

The club is open to all students in kindergarten through sixth grade.

This event includes special guest presenters from the Eclectic Circus. Participants will learn juggling, hula hooping, and other fun circus skills.

The program is free for CCEEC members, and a nominal donation is requested of non-members. For more information, call (570) 645-8597.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The following students have achieved principal's list or honor roll for the third marking period at Towamensing Elementary School.

Principal's list

Students who have attained all As in all major subjects.

Third grade: Reilly Burke, Montanna Costenbader, Sandra Costenbader, Riley Fallon, Julia Finley, Kira Hauser, Elizabeth Levering, Elizabeth Melber, Elizabeth Morgan, Natalie Mosier, Alysa Roe, Hannah Serfass, Trey Sterling