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Local News

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

A former Texas man pleaded guilty in federal court for his part in a drug trafficking operation that included sales in Monroe and Northampton counties.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania said Jose Gomez, 46, formerly of Garland, Texas, pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Scranton, before Senior U.S. District Judge Edwin M. Kosik, to the charge of conspiracy to distribute cocaine. He was sentenced to serve 36 months in prison.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
CHRIS PARKER/TIMES NEWS Carbon Career and Technical Institute senior Helen O'Connor demonstrates how to use an oxygen mask on a medical mannequin.

It seems to Helen O'Connor, 17, of Albrightsville, that she's been studying all her life to become a nurse.

"I have a handicapped brother and sister at home, so I grew up in hospitals with them, standing next to the nurses, seeing what they do. That inspired me to move on into the nursing field," she said.

Her sister Jean is 22, and her brother James is 19.

"They both have myotonic dystrophy, which is a form of muscular dystrophy," she said. "Growing up, they had a lot of digestive problems and were always in the hospital for surgeries and procedures."

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
Reiner

Following an executive session Monday evening, the Penn Forest board of supervisors fired two administrative employees.

Cindy Henning, who is also the administrative shop steward for the union, and Carol Matthews were both let go in a 4 to 1 vote of the board.

Supervisor Judy Knappenberger was the only one voting no.

An altercation took place on May 9, when Henning, upon hearing an argument between two of the supervisors, attempted to enter the break room where the argument was taking place.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
Visitors' garbage overflows.

A recent Times News article about overflowing trash at Riverview Park was a main topic of discussion at Monday's East Penn Township Board of Supervisors meeting.

Bill Schwab, the former East Penn Township Parks Commission chairman and a former township supervisor, read from a prepared statement that it was unfortunate that "it took a front page (newspaper) article for the township to take pride in their park and clean it up Friday."

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The issue regarding misappropriated funds in Penn Forest Township was once again a subject of their monthly board of supervisor's meeting.

Chairman of the township Board of Auditors, Matt Schutter, took to the podium to admonish the board stating that a series of executive sessions held during May were in violation of the Sunshine Act.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Carbon Career and Technical Institute Class of 2014, the largest in the school's history, has an equally large number of outstanding students. here are the students who were honored at the school's recent awards presentation:

Jeffrey Ache: Half-time graduate, carpentry; most-improved carpentry student.

Dustin Ahner: SKILLS senior state medalist; Outstanding Senior in Precision Machine Technology.

Dakota Baker: Half-time graduate, culinary arts; Culinary Arts award.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Members of International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1600 have ratified a new three-year contract with Pennsylvania-based companies of PPL Corporation, the company announced Tuesday.

The agreement, which will run through May 21, 2017, includes wage increases of 2.5 percent in the first year, 2.5 percent in the second year, and 2.75 percent in the third year.

It also provides competitive retirement savings and health care benefits.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

In addition to recent trash problems at Riverview Park, there were several other topics covered at Monday's East Penn Township Board of Supervisors meeting.

A few residents again expressed dissatisfaction with what they perceive to still be a lack of progress by property owner Clair Troxell to clean junk from his property.

The township has been in litigation on and off with Troxell about the state of his property for more than a decade.

"It's been a long time," said resident Donna Sheckler, who asked why nothing seems to be able to be done in regard to Troxell.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
MARY TOBIA/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS The Palmerton Area Library was the site of the 2014 Horsehead Community Development Fund grants awards. Presenters and recipients were, front row, from left, Mariann Kmetz, Dimmick Memorial Library; Pam Andrews, Palmerton Area Recreation; Rosanne Pugh,Slatington Public Library; Jeno Roberts, Palmerton Area Basketball Training Program; Robbie Ahner, Palmerton Community Band; Darlene Nothstein, Meals on Wheels; and KristenSimmons, Carbon County Lion/Lioness Fair Association. Back row, Bill Smelas, HCDFexecutive consultant; Matt Solt, Bowmanstown/Palmerton Baseball/Softball Association; John Kisthardt, HCDF board member; Dan Kunkle, Lehigh Gap Nature Center; Chris Allen, Towamensing Soccer Club; Chris Kegel, Aquashicola Volunteer Fire Company; Jim Wimmer, HCDF chairman; Joe Federanich, Palmerton Holiday Lighting Committee; and Rory Koons, HCDF board member.

Horsehead Community Development Fund and Horsehead Corporation in Palmerton extended a boost to the budget of area volunteer organizations.

The development fund was established to contribute to certain charitable projects in and around Palmerton and the surrounding communities.

Fourteen area groups were presented a grant check recently during the 2014 dispersal of funds, held at the Palmerton Area Library.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

A newly formed group in Carbon County is asking for help from its members.

The Carbon County Council of Governments, which includes municipalities, county commissioners, county agencies and state Sen. John Yudichak's office, is working to determine what equipment is available within the county limits and what is needed.

During the COG meeting last week, two priorities were established creating an equipment list and figuring out what each municipality wants to get out of the group.