Friday July 17, 2020

Wolf administration lays out plans for opening schools….virus cases continue to increase in region….Wilcox woman cited for pushing man during argument….Troopers at Ridgway make two DUI arrests….

Thursday’s high, 83; Overnight low, 69; .97” of rain from evening thunderstorm

MOSTLY SUNNY TODAY A HIGH OF 81.
MOSTLY CLEAR TONIGHT LOW 59.
MOSTLY SUNNY AGAIN TOMORROW WARMER HIGH OF 87.
MOSTLY CLEAR. TOMORROW NIGHT LOW OF 62.
MOSTLY SUNNY ON SUNDAY, WITH A FEW AFTERNOON AND EVENING THUNDERSTORMS POSSIBLE. HIGH OF 88

This is the news parents have been waiting for. Pennsylvania Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine and Education Secretary Pedro Rivera have jointly announced updated guidance to help Pre-K to 12 schools prepare to reopen and safely educate students for in-person learning. Each school entity will determine if classes resume in person at school buildings, remotely or a combination of both options.
“Our goal is to ensure a safe return to school for students, educators and staff by following best practices to mitigate the spread of the virus, including wearing face coverings and maintaining social distancing,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “In those instances when someone tests positive, public health staff from the department will immediately assist the school with risk assessment, isolation and quarantine recommendations, and other infection control recommendations.”
The guidance represents endorsed best public health practices related to social distancing, face coverings, hand hygiene, and cleaning and disinfecting in school settings. It also outlines how to accommodate individuals with disabilities or chronic conditions, procedures for monitoring symptoms, and responding to confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in the school community.
The best practice recommendations for schools outlined by the departments of Health and Education include:

Masks must be worn by students and staff at school and on the bus as required by the order signed by Sec. of Health Dr. Levine on July 1, with some exceptions. Masks can be removed to eat or drink.
Students or caregivers should do a daily symptom screening before leaving for school.
Students, teachers and other staff are strongly encouraged to follow social distancing throughout the day with six 6 feet of separation between desks and other seating.
If possible, hold classes in gyms, auditoriums, other large spaces or outdoors, where physical distancing can be maintained.

Student seating should be facing in the same direction.
Limit student interactions by staggering class times, creating one-way walking patterns in hallways, and, when feasible, keeping students in a classroom and rotating teachers instead.
For breakfast and lunch, consider serving individually packaged meals in classrooms and avoid across-the-table seating. If meals are served in a cafeteria, sit students at least 6 feet apart.
Limit the number of students on playgrounds at one time and encourage social distancing.
Encourage the use of virtual gatherings, events, and extracurricular activities.
The guidance released yesterday provides a list of best practices for schools to consider before the start of in-person classes.
The guidance for school sports is unchanged. Coaches, athletes, and spectators must wear masks unless they can maintain 6 feet of separation outdoors. Athletes can remove masks during a workout or competition.

Today’s guidance builds on the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s preliminary guidance issued June 3 outlining steps schools must take before they may resume in-person instruction.
The preliminary guidance requires school districts, charter schools, regional charter schools, cyber charter schools, career and technical centers and intermediate units to develop a health and safety plan. The plans must be approved by the school’s governing body and made available on the school’s public website before bringing students and staff back to campus. Nonpublic schools are strongly encouraged to create plans tailored to their unique needs and post them on their websites.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health today confirmed as of 12:00 a.m., July 16, that there are 781 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 98,446. All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have cases of COVID-19. The number of cases here in the Black Forest Broadcasting service area continued to increase. Elk and Tioga counties now have 32 cases each; McKean, 20; Potter 19; and Cameron 5. Across the border in New York State Cattaraugus County has 142 cases and Allegany County, 69. Allegheny County Pennsylvania near Pittsburgh, current hotspot, is reporting an increase of 140 cases, and Philadelphia is reporting an increase of 132 cases.

The number of tests administered within the last 7 days between July 9 and July 15 is 142,176 with 5,517 positive cases. There were 20,413 test results reported to the department through 10 p.m., July 15. These results represent the total number of tests administered.
There are 6,973 total deaths attributed to COVID-19, an increase of 16 new deaths reported. Mask-wearing is required in all businesses and whenever leaving home. Consistent mask-wearing is critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

There are 638 patients who have a positive serology test and either COVID-19 symptoms or a high-risk exposure, which are considered probable cases and not confirmed cases. There are 885,195 patients who have tested negative to date. Most of the patients hospitalized are ages 65 or older, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older.

The department is seeing significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases among younger age groups, particularly 19 to 24-year-olds. In nursing and personal care homes, there are 18,430 resident cases of COVID-19, and 3,534 cases among employees, for a total of 21,964 at 767 distinct facilities in 58 counties including Elk and McKean. Out of the total deaths, 4,777 have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities. Approximately 7,337 of the total cases are in health care workers.For the latest information for individuals, families, businesses and schools, visit “

Ridgway Based State Police have arrested a 50 year old Wilcox woman for physical harassment for an incident allegedly occurring Wednesday night on Kane Street in Jones Township Elk County. Police claim that the suspect pushed a 30 year old Wilcox man during an argument and charges have been filed in District Court.

Troopers Ridgway are charging a 34 year old Wilcox man for DUI after stopping him just before seven o’clock Wednesday morning on the Wilcox Road in Jones township troopers pulled over a 2010 Ford Taurus for alleged traffic violations and while interviewing the operator, they reportedly found him in possession of a controlled substance. He was taken to Penn Highlands Elk for legal, blood draw. Charges are pending those results.

A 54 year old Chesterfield, Virginia man has been arrested for DUI by state police at Ridgway. Troopers allege when they stopped his 2019 GMC Sierra on Montmorenci Road at Whitetail Meadows Lane, early July 11, for a traffic violation. Police day and upon further investigation, they determined that he had been driving the vehicle under the

Thursday July 16, 2020

Wednesdays’ high, 82; Overnight low, 65
RAIN TODAY A HIGH OF 83.
RAIN SHOWERS AND POSSIBLE THUNDERSTORMS TONIGHT LOW 67.
SCATTERED THUNDERSTORMS TOMORROW HIGH OF 84
CLOUDS TOMORROW NIGHT, LOW 64.
SATURDAY STORMS, HIGH IN THE 80s
LOW IN THE 60s

Bridge replacement underway in Hebron Township….Owlett introduces legislation to help students affected by virus…..Virus cases continue to go up in the region…..Shinglehouse teen’s car “egged” by vandals…..20 year old jailed on drug charges…Elderly driver unhurt after running over tombstone….

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announces that a one-lane temporary roadway that will carry traffic around a bridge replacement job on Route 44 in Hebron Township, Potter County, has opened. The bridge spans Steer Run approximately four miles north of Coudersport near the intersection of Route 4006 (West Hebron Road)
Work on this project will be done in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and state Department of Health guidance as well as a project-specific COVID-19 safety plan, which will include protocols for social distancing, use of face coverings, personal and job site cleaning protocols, management of entries to the job site and relevant training.

Traffic will be diverted onto the temporary roadway. Temporary traffic signals will enforce an alternating traffic pattern that will see motorists take turns passing through the work zone. This traffic pattern will remain in effect for the duration of the project.Overall work will include removal of the existing single span reinforced concrete slab bridge, installation of the replacement precast reinforced concrete box culvert, approach paving, drainage upgrades, guide rail replacement, pavement marking and miscellaneous items. Glenn O. Hawbaker, Inc. of State College is the contractor on this $742,000 job. PennDOT anticipates reopening the bridge to traffic in early September. All work is weather and schedule dependent.The existing bridge is 15-feet long, was built in 1934 and is traveled by more than 1,700 vehicles daily.
Motorists can check conditions on major roadways by visiting www.511PA.com. 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 1,000 traffic cameras.
511PA is also available through a smartphone application for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1, or by following regional Twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website.
Subscribe to PennDOT news in Cameron, Centre, Clearfield, Clinton, Elk, Juniata, McKean, Mifflin, and Potter counties at www.penndot.gov/District2.

Working to ensure all Pennsylvania children will have access to the educational resources they need to succeed, Sen. Judy Ward (R-Blair/Fulton/Cumberland/Franklin/Huntingdon) and Rep. Clint Owlett (R-Tioga/Bradford/Potter) have introduced legislation that would create new scholarship accounts for students whose education was disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic .Senate Bill 1230 and House Bill 2696 each propose to create Back on Track Education Scholarship Accounts (ESA) to empower parents by providing the funding they need to offset educational costs for their school-age children in grades K-12. The scholarships are needed now more than ever as parents are becoming increasingly worried school shutdowns due to the coronavirus pandemic will have long-term effects on their children’s education.Like health savings accounts or EBT cards for food stamps, funds in Back on Track ESAs could only be used for approved education-related purchases, such as tuition, online classes, curriculum, tutoring, counseling and services for students with special needs.
Parents would receive $1,000 per child in the scholarship account, which would come from a portion of the state’s federal CARES Act funds. School-age children who currently qualify for Pennsylvania’s free or reduced-cost lunch program would have priority in applying for the ESAs. After the initial application period, any school-age child would be eligible on a first-come, first-served basis.
If the law is enacted, Back on Track ESA accounts would be administered by the Pennsylvania Treasury, much like the existing 529 program.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health today confirmed as of 12:00 a.m., July 15, that there are 994 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 97,665. All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have cases of COVID-19. The number continues to increase here in the Black Forest Broadcasting Service Area. Tioga County and Elk county now each have 31 cases; McKean, 20 Potter 19 and Cameron 5. Across the border in New York State the number continues to increase. Cattaraugus County now has 141 cases and Allegany County 69. Allegheny County Pennsylvania near Pittsburgh is reporting an increase of 246 cases and Philadelphia is reporting an increase of 135 cases.
The number of tests administered within the last 7 days between July 8 and July 14 is 139,819 with 5,372 positive cases. In the last day, close to 28,800 COVID-19 diagnostic test results were reported to the department, the highest one-day number of COVID-19 diagnostic test results reported.
There are 6,957 total deaths attributed to COVID-19, an increase of 26 new deaths reported. County-specific information and a statewide map are available on the COVID-19 Dashboard.Mask-wearing is required in all businesses and whenever leaving home. Consistent mask-wearing is critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19.There are 637 patients who have a positive serology test and either COVID-19 symptoms or a high-risk exposure, which are considered probable cases and not confirmed cases. There are 870,984 patients who have tested negative to date. Of the patients who have tested positive to date the age breakdown is as follows:

Most of the patients hospitalized are ages 65 or older, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older. The department is seeing significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases among younger age groups, particularly 19 to 24-year-oldsThe following regions have seen significant increases among 19 to 24-year-olds in each month from April to present in July:

SW – Approximately 5 percent of cases in April to 23 percent of cases so far in July;
SE – Nearly 5 percent of cases in April to approximately 17 percent of cases so far in July;
NE – Nearly 6 percent of cases in April to nearly 17 percent of cases so far in July;
NW – Nearly 7 percent of cases in April to nearly 12 percent of cases so far in July; and
NC – Nearly 8 percent of cases in April to nearly 13 percent of cases so far in July.
SC – Approximately 7 percent of cases in April to nearly 13 percent of cases so far in July.
In nursing and personal care homes, there are 18,384 resident cases of COVID-19, and 3,517 cases among employees, for a total of 21,901 at 763 distinct facilities in 57 counties. Out of our total deaths, 4,767 have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities.
Approximately 7,284 of the total cases are in health care workers.

Coudersport based State Police are investigating a criminal mischief occurring Monday night on South Puritan Street in vandals egged a vehicle belonging to a 17 year old Shinglehouse boy and the investigation is continuing.

Troopers at Lewis Run have arrested a 20 year old suspect no address given for criminal trespass at around 10am yesterday, in Wetmore township McKean County. The suspect was taken into custody without incident and was allegedly found in possession of drug paraphernalia. After arraignment he was remanded to the McKean County Jail.

Troopers at Lewis Run are continuing to investigate a harassment taking place on Route 46 in Keating Township Monday afternoon. Someone posted Instagram messages obscene materials to a 19 year old woman and the investigation is continuing.
The unauthorized use of a motor vehicle on Newell Creek Road in Annin Township , July 3 and 4 remains under investigation. No further details were released by state police.

An 80 year old Kane woman was uninjured in a minor mishap occurring at Mount Tabor cemetery in Wetmore Township on July 5. Lewis Run state police report the woman backed her car on top of a tombstone that she owns and knocked it over, causing damage to the tombstone. The driver did not realize the damage until about a week later.

Emporium based State Police have charged 24 year old Devin Huss of St. Mary’s with drug possession after stopping his Dodge Caravan on the Sizerville Road in Shippen Township on the afternoon of July 2. Police say a consent search of the vehicle yielded a metal marijuana container grinder with a small amount of a green leafy substance believed to be pot. Charges are pending for possession of drug paraphernalia and drugs in District Court.

 

Wednesday July 15, 2020

Tuesday’s high, 81; Overnight low, 50

MOSTLY SUNNY TODAY WITH A HIGH OF 84

CLOUDS  INCREASING TONIGHT LOW 69

CLOUDS CONTINUE  TO INCREASE TOMORROW. HIGH OF 80

SHOWERS & THUNDERSTORMS TOWARD EVENING.OTHERWISE MOSTLY CLOUDY A LOW OF 69.

FRIDAY, MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A HIGH IN THE 80s

Governor Wolf has been criticized by several lawmakers, especially Republicans and his unilateral decisions made during the COVID 19 pandemic and the State House has taken action, which could give Commonwealth citizens more say in the actions of their government during emergency situations

A majority in the state House yesterday voted to amend Pennsylvania’s Constitution to ensure the Commonwealth’s citizens have a say in the actions of their government during emergency situations.

Lawmakers say tor the last four months, “the governor has made numerous unilateral decisions that have had devastating impacts on our citizens and taxpayers “The emergency powers granted to the governor by the General Assembly are necessary at times for immediate response, but they are not intended to go on forever. What we are seeing now is an abuse of power by this governor. “ Senate Bill 1166 proposes to amend the state Constitution by requiring passage of a concurrent resolution by the Legislature for any disaster emergency declaration a governor wishes to extend beyond a period of 21 days. Under the bill, the governor would have to indicate the nature of any disaster and the area being threatened. It also would require the General Assembly to statutorily provide for the manner in which each type of disaster will be managed.The bill also proposes an amendment to clarify state law to indicate a concurrent resolution to end a disaster declaration need not be presented to the governor for his approval or veto. The action was made necessary after a recent court ruling on House Resolution 836, which sought to end the governor’s COVID-19 disaster declaration.Finally, it also proposes an amendment that would protect against denial or abridgement of equality of rights because of race and ethnicity.

A constitutional amendment proposal must be approved by both the House and Senate in two consecutive sessions and then be put before the voters in a referendum before it can be enacted.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health today confirmed as of 12:00 a.m., July 14, that there are 929 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 96,671. All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have cases of COVID-19.

 

 

The Pennsylvania Department of Health today confirmed as of 12:00 a.m., July 14, that there are 929 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 96,671. All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have cases of COVID-19.Of today’s reported cases, 216 cases were a result of a delay in private lab result reporting. The vast majority did not occur within the past 24 hours. Allegheny County is reporting an increase of 331 cases. However, 186 cases are because of the reporting delay. Therefore, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania  had an increase of 145 cases within the past 24 hours.The number of tests administered within the last 7 days between July 7 and July 13 is 130,315 with 5,438 positive cases.There are 6,931 total deaths attributed to COVID-19, an increase of 20 new deaths reported. County-specific information and a statewide map are available on the COVID-19 Data Dashboard.

Mask-wearing is required in all businesses and whenever leaving home. Consistent mask-wearing is critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

There are 635 patients who have a positive serology test and either COVID-19 symptoms or a high-risk exposure, which are considered probable cases and not confirmed cases. There are 850,612 patients who have tested negative to date.

Most of the patients hospitalized are ages 65 or older, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older.

The department is seeing significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases among younger age groups, particularly 19 to 24-year-olds. An alert was sent to healthcare over the weekend about the changing COVID-19 case demographics, as there are more cases in younger age groups than in those 50-64 and 65+. The following regions have seen significant increases among 19 to 24-year-olds in each month from April to present in July:

SW – Approximately 5 percent of cases in April to nearly 24 percent of cases so far in July;

SE – Nearly 5 percent of cases in April to nearly 17 percent of cases so far in July;

NE – Nearly 6 percent of cases in April to nearly 17 percent of cases so far in July;

NW – Nearly 7 percent of cases in April to over 12 percent of cases so far in July; and

NC – Nearly 8 percent of cases in April to nearly 14 percent of cases so far in July.

SC – Approximately 7 percent of cases in April to nearly 13 percent of cases so far in July.

In nursing and personal care homes, there are 18,321 resident cases of COVID-19, and 3,499 cases among employees, for a total of 21,820 at 756 distinct facilities in 57 counties including Elk and McKean.
Out of the  total deaths, 4,712 have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities.

Approximately 7,224 of the total cases are in health care workers.

 

 

 

 

 

Coudersport Volunteer Fire Chief Brian Phelps advises  through social media  that there will be a mental health counseling session tomorrow from 9-4 at the Coudersport  Senior Center by Dickinson Mental Health staff who will give counseling available at no charge to anyone from the public that witnessed a fatal accident in Coudersport Borough  on Monday. If you witnessed the accident or participated in attempting to revive the victim, you are invited to contact Dickinson’s office at 814-274-8729 or after hours Toll Free 1-877-724-7142. The session is open to the public that witnessed or was involved in assisting care. One is also  is also being set up for first response. A large top of a pine tree that was being removed by a Shinglehouse  company fell breaking the anchor point of  another large branch crashed into a bucket truck being used by the contractor. The large limb then crashed into the fully extended iron bucket ejecting the operator from the bucket as it collapsed to the ground. The man operating the bucket died as a result of blunt force trauma. Coudersport State Police assisted at the scene along with ambulance personnel, Medic 6 borough police, Portville Truck, Potter County coroner Kevin Dusenberry and Deputy coroner Doug Estes. The name of the victim was not released by Chief Phelps.

 State Police at Lewis Run are investigating a theft by deception victimizing a 44 year old Smethport  woman. On Monday, she told police that she ordered a trolling motor from a website and never received the package but when  she tried to contact the website she found it had been removed. However, the incident remains under investigation.

No one was hurt in a collision  Sunday afternoon on Minard Run  Road in Keating Township McKean County. According to State Police at Lewis Run, the collision occurred as a 16 year old Rixford girl was traveling south on State Route 646 and a vehicle driven by Mark Miketish of Olean was traveling north on State Route 770. The teen driver entered  the intersection and drove into the path of the Miketish’s Chevy Silverado hitting  it in the side at the Y intersection. The teen driver was cited for failing to obey stop signs and yield signs . Both drivers and their passengers were using seatbelts and escaped injury.

Troopers at Lewis Run are  charging a 20 year old Lebanon  Pennsylvania man with drug possession after his 2007 Dodge Ram was stopped on the at the intersection of Minard Run  Road near Orchard Valley Road in Bradford Township Saturday night for alleged traffic violations.  Police claim the driver whose name they did not release was found to be in possession of a controlled substance and related paraphernalia. Charges are pending drug testing results.

 A 65 year old Kane man has been charged with DUI after he was pulled over at Biddle Street and Welsh Street in the borough of Kane Saturday night for a summary traffic violation. While investigating troopers determined that the man whose name was not released had been driving his Ford Ranger under the influence of alcohol.  He was taken to UPMC Kane and submitted to a legal blood draw. Charges are pending those results.

Ridgway based State Police are charging a 27 old Ridgway man with harassment for a domestic violence incident occurring yesterday afternoon at a home at 5415Ridgeway/ Johnsonburg Road in Ridgway Township.  Police allege  the man pushed a 23 year old Ridgway woman during an argument about sharing their bedroom.

 A 78 year old Covington man whose name was not released by police is being charged with disorderly conduct for an incident allegedly taking place Saturday morning on Cherry Flats Road. Troopers at Mansfield claim they responded to an alarm at a home and determined it was a false alarm. Further review revealed that was the fourth false alarm occurring  within a 12 month period at that location in violation of state law. A non traffic citation was filed on District Court.

State police at Mansfield  are investigating a scattering of rubbish incident occurring sometime since January 1 and this  past Monday in Farmington Township. Unknown persons deposited a large amount of empty beer containers and assorted  party trash on a private road off of Croft Hill Road across from Palmer Road in Farmington Township.

 A  criminal mischief occurring at Buffards Riverside Estates in Lawrenceville is also under investigation by troopers at Mansfield. Sometime between June 27 and 29th criminals ripped several screens on the exterior of a home belonging to a 25 year old Lawrenceville man. The windows themselves were not open and no entry was made into the house.  The vandals  fled the scene after causing $10 in damage.