White Oak Slates Clean-Up Day April 28

April 26, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Announcements, White Oak News

The annual White Oak Borough spring clean-up is slated for 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday (April 28) at the Heritage Hill Pavilion. Volunteers are welcome to participate and are encouraged to come at 9:30 a.m. to prepare for the event.

The purpose of the event is to remove litter and debris from roadside and to increase public awareness of litter problems in the borough, Councilman Lou Bender said.

Volunteers will be issued safety clothing and rescue and police vehicles will travel with groups to ensure safety.

 
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McKeesport's Short to Deliver Keynote at Penn State Event

April 25, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

McKeesport native Brandon Short will deliver the keynote remarks at Penn State Greater Allegheny's second-annual Crossing Bridges Summit.

The event is scheduled for 7 p.m. May 2 at the Wunderley Gymnasium on the McKeesport campus. General admission tickets are free, but an RSVP is required. VIP tickets are $15. For more information, visit the university's website.

Short is a 1995 graduate of McKeesport Area High School, where he was a standout athlete, lettering in both basketball and football. He was part of the team that won a state football championship in 1994, and was named Associated Press Pennsylvania Big School Player-of-the-Year during his senior year.

 
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City Ceremony Sunday Will Mark 75th Anniversary of Namesake's WWII Sinking

April 23, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Image courtesy Wrecksite.EU, the Internet's largest database of shipwreck information)


A ceremony and luncheon this Sunday will mark the 75th anniversary of the sinking during World War II of the S.S. McKeesport.

The event begins at 1 p.m. April 29 at Jacob Woll Pavilion in Renziehausen Park, a spokeswoman said.

The S.S. McKeesport, a merchant marine vessel, was one of 30 supply ships named for cities where U.S. Steel had large operations.

Built by U.S. Steel's Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Co. in Kearney, N.J., it was completed in 1919 and christened by Eleanor Cornelius, daughter of the general manager of McKeesport's National Tube Co. pipe mill.

 
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Library, Director Recognized by White Oak Council

April 23, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

White Oak Mayor Ina Jean Marton and borough council recently recognized the Carnegie Library of McKeesport with a proclamation in honor of National Library Week, April 8 to 14.

At council's meeting, Marton also introduced Colleen Denne, the recently appointed library director.

The White Oak branch of the Carnegie Library of McKeesport, located at 169 Victoria Dr., is open to the public 2 to 10 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays, 2 to 6 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.

In other business, outgoing Councilman Sean Robb discussed preparations for the 2018 season at Heritage Hill Pool, and said the Parks and Recreation Committee recently met with the pool's management team.

 
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Mon Valley is Turning a Corner, Panelists Say --- But Transportation Challenges Remain

April 23, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Above: State Rep. Austin Davis, left, makes a point as state Rep. Paul Costa and U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle listen during Friday's legislative breakfast, sponsored by the Mon Yough Area Chamber of Commerce. (Photo special to Tube City Almanac)


Although the Mon Valley is finally turning an economic corner, lack of good transportation to and from the region's "job centers" remains a obstacle.

That was the message delivered by elected officials and business leaders Friday during the annual legislative breakfast of the Mon Yough Area Chamber of Commerce.

Several panelists mentioned the need for the long-delayed extension of the Mon-Fayette Expressway through West Mifflin and Duquesne, to provide major highway access to brownfields in the McKeesport area.

But transportation progress can't begin and end with the expressway, state Rep. Austin Davis said. "If you've seen some of the growth that has taken place in the city of Pittsburgh, in places like East Liberty, it's because of access to public transportation," Davis said. "It's been transit-oriented development."

 
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School Employees Get Emergency Training During 'Stop the Bleed' Sessions

April 21, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News, White Oak News

(All photos: Vickie Babyak, special to Tube City Almanac)


Teachers and staff at McKeesport Area School District are learning how to provide emergency help until first responders arrive at four "Stop the Bleed" sessions.

The third session was presented for employees at McKeesport Area High School on Thursday. Techniques were taught by representatives of UPMC Pre-Hospital Care and Trauma Care, as well as McKeesport Ambulance Rescue Service and White Oak EMS.

"It's part of our ongoing efforts to ensure the safety of our students," said Tom Bauman, associate principal at the high school.

 
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District Residents Pitch In During Recycling Event

April 21, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Above: Matt McCracken of White Oak and James Williams Jr. of Duquesne help load discarded tires onto a truck for recycling Saturday in Renziehausen Park.


Volunteers, students and city employees collected hard-to-recycle items --- including TVs, computer monitors, tires and cell phones --- during an Earth Day event Saturday in Renziehausen Park.

"Respect Our City, Respect Our Earth" was open to all residents of McKeesport Area School District and was supported in part by the Angora Gardens Junior Gardeners, the McKeesport Lions Club and the school district.

"This was a great opportunity for residents to safely dispose of materials that would otherwise end up in alleys or over hillsides," McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko said. "We want to give people as many opportunities as we can to keep their neighborhoods looking good and their homes uncluttered."

 
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White Oak Councilman Resigns; Borough Updates Ordinances

April 20, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

White Oak Councilman Sean Robb announced his resignation at Monday’s borough council meeting, saying that he has accepted a business opportunity that will require him to spend most of his time outside of Pennsylvania.

“I feel the residents of the borough deserve to have a full and fair representation of all their council members, therefore I am submitting my resignation,” Robb said.

Under the state’s borough code, council will have 30 days to appoint a replacement to fill Robb's term until the next municipal election.

In other business, council amended the borough's zoning ordinance to permit medical marijuana, and amended the part of the ordinance governing oil and gas drilling operations.

 
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Funds Sought to Rehab Railroad Roundhouse as Museum

April 19, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Editor's Note: The author has a conflict of interest. See conflict of interest note, below.

(Photo courtesy Regional Industrial Development Corp.)


Two groups have announced an effort to preserve the McKeesport Connecting Railroad roundhouse at the former U.S. Steel National Works site.

In a press release, the recently formed Steel City Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society, Inc., and the McKeesport Preservation Society said they will hold a fundraiser at Teutonia Mannechor on Pittsburgh's North Side at 5 p.m. June 16 to kick off their effort.

Tickets are $50 for members of the railway society and $75 for non-members.

The groups envision reusing the building, which once serviced steam and diesel locomotives for the railroad, as the "Western Pennsylvania Railroad and Transportation Museum."

 
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District-Wide Recycling Event Planned This Saturday

April 19, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Hard-to-recycle items such as cellular phones, computer monitors and tires will be collected during a recycling event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in Renziehausen Park.

The event, organized by McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko and city officials, is open to all residents of the McKeesport Area School District, including Dravosburg, South Versailles Twp., Versailles and White Oak, a spokeswoman said.

"Respect Our City, Respect Our Earth" is being supported in part by the Angora Gardens Junior Gardeners, the McKeesport Lions Club and the school district.

 
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KDKA's Delano to Moderate Discussion at Chamber's Legislative Breakfast

April 19, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

KDKA-TV political analyst Jon Delano will moderate a discussion about economic development on Friday morning at the Mon-Yough Area Chamber of Commerce's annual legislative breakfast.

The topic of the discussion is "Economic Development Opportunities and Resources in the Mon Valley," said Maury Burgwin, executive director of the chamber. The event, presented by the Steel Valley Enterprise Zone Corp., begins at 7:30 a.m. at Westwood Golf Club, 825 Commonwealth Ave., West Mifflin.

Delano is the money and politics editor for the CBS affiliate in Pittsburgh and also serves as an adjunct professor of public policy and politics at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College.

 
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White Oak Legion Slates Oldies Dances

April 18, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, White Oak News

White Oak American Legion Post 701 will hold oldies dances from 7 to 11 p.m. May 19 and 26, a spokesman said.

Music will be provided by DJs Candy and Mike. Admission is $5 and all proceeds benefit veterans' programs.

The legion is located at 2813 Capital St. For more information, call (724) 984-6611.

 

Westmoreland Co. Croatian Lodge Taking Lamb Orders

April 18, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Sv. Nikola Brodar CFU Lodge 432 is taking orders for barbecued lamb for pick up on April 29 at the Yukon Croatian Club, 109 Union St., Yukon.

To order, call Mike Mezick by April 22 at (724) 872-7495.

All are invited to enjoy an afternoon of tamburitza music and dancing when Stari Prijatelji entertains from 2 to 6 p.m. April 29. The event is open to the public. Doors open at 12:30 p.m. with ethnic food and desserts for purchase.

Yukon is exit 53 on Interstate 70. For more information, call the Yukon Croatian Club at (724) 722-4100.

 

Local Sites Participating in DEA Drug 'Take Back' Day

April 18, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, Crime and Police News

(Photo courtesy U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency)


Allegheny County and local police are again teaming up with UPMC Health System, other agencies and private businesses to take unused prescription drugs off the streets.

The 14th annual National Take-Back Initiative, sponsored by the federal Drug Enforcement Agency, will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 28.

Law-enforcement and health officials say that unused prescription drugs --- especially painkillers --- are often abused by people to whom they weren't originally prescribed. And drugs disposed of improperly can pose a danger to birds, fish and other wildlife.

In the Mon-Yough area, drug collection sites will be available at UPMC McKeesport hospital, East Pittsburgh, Wilmerding, Clairton, Pleasant Hills, West Mifflin and the North Huntingdon Twp. town house.

 
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Serra High Ready to Have a Ball With 'Cinderella'

April 17, 2018 |

By Bonnijean Cooney Adams | Posted in: Entertainment

Paige Thatcher as Cinderella (right), tries to meet all the demands placed upon her. From left are Madette Kusic as Stepmother, Sarah Brammell as Stepsister Portia and Abby DiLonardo as Stepsister Joy.


Although the ladies are thrilled that the prince is giving a ball, the king’s really the one paying for it and has some financial concerns when Serra Catholic High School presents Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical version of “Cinderella.”

The musical opens Wednesday (April 18) and continues nightly at 7 p.m. through Saturday (April 21).

“‘Cinderella’ was a good choice for us because Serra Catholic has never performed this musical,” director Jesse Bush said. “Since I’m new here, I decided to pick a show I’m familiar with to help me get to know the students.”

Bush said Serra’s “Cinderella” is the fourth high school musical he has directed. In addition to his director duties, he teaches music, music appreciation, and is the band and choir director.

 
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Healthy Village Marks 5th Anniversary of Education, Outreach

April 17, 2018 |

By Tyler Pack | Posted in: News

(Photo courtesy Healthy Village Learning Institute)

History tells us much. But the past is just one part of the story. The present and future are equally important. Organizations that understand this and build upon it are able to most successfully serve their communities.

The Healthy Village Learning Institute in McKeesport is an example of an organization that takes a holistic approach to lifting up its members and the entire community.

Located in the former St. Pius V. Catholic School on Versailles Avenue, the building overlooks much of the community. It also shares the lower level with a fitness organization called Akwaaba Fitness. Akwaaba is the Ghanaian word for “welcome.” 

The Healthy Village Learning Institute has just celebrated a milestone fifth anniversary. But the concept and the work to create it began long ago. The founder, Keith Murphy, has made it a nearly two-decade labor of love.

 
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Duquesne Mayor Schedules 'Town Hall' Meeting

April 16, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Crime and Police News, Duquesne News

Residents of Duquesne are being invited to attend a town hall meeting to learn about happenings in the city. 

The special meeting is slated for 6 to 8 p.m. April 25 in the Duquesne School District Auditorium on Kennedy Avenue.

Mayor Nickole Nesby will be there to answer questions, listen to ideas and hear comments about the city, programs, developments, service priorities and infrastructure needs.

Residents are encouraged to attend, join the discussion and get involved.

 
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New Solicitor Appointed in Duquesne

April 16, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

Duquesne City Council has appointed John Rushford as the municipality's new solicitor.

A senior attorney at Cafardi, Ferguson, Wyrick, Weis & Stotler, Rushford has more than 20 years' experience representing municipal governments.

The appointment was made at Tuesday’s council meeting.

Mayor Nickole Nesby said she was happy council made the appointment. “John has represented public and private entities in all areas related to governmental affairs including contract negotiations, grievance arbitration, personnel matters, constructions issues, tax assessment appeals, zoning (and) planning and development issues,” she said.

 
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State Agency Awards $300K for Housing Upgrades in Library District

April 13, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

A state agency has awarded $300,000 to construct two new homes in the city's Library and Cultural District, and make improvements to 10 existing owner-occupied homes.

The award was one of 137, totalling $26.6 million statewide, announced Thursday by the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund.

"PHARE" money comes from a variety of sources, including real estate transfer taxes and marcellus shale gas drilling fees, and supports housing and community development initiatives in low and moderate income communities.

In addition to the Carnegie Library of McKeesport, the Seventh Ward neighborhood is also home to several churches, Twin Rivers Elementary School, the McKeesport Little Theater and other assets.

“Providing affordable homes is essential in helping our families and communities thrive,” state Rep. Austin Davis said. “Not only will this grant truly help those in need, but it will also sustain the pride of our artistic corridor.”

 
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Area Men Tampered With Railroad Signals, Grand Jury Charges

April 13, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

(UPDATED with additional information from arrest warrant and indictment.)

Two local men have been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges they tampered with railroad signals.

The indictment, unsealed Wednesday, accuses William C. Brown, 24, of Elizabeth and Brandon E. Peck, 24, of Glassport of damaging railroad signals and equipment, U.S. Attorney Scott W. Brady said in a prepared release.

According to the indictment, federal prosecutors claim that Brown cut cables on railroad signal antennas on a CSX equipment shack on Nov. 1. Prosecutors further claim that Brown and Peck returned the following day to remove the antennas.

Federal officials did not say where the incident occurred, but that it happened on a CSX Railroad line that is also used by Amtrak, within Allegheny County.

 
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Duquesne Easter Egg Hunt to be Held Saturday

April 13, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Announcements, Duquesne News

Duquesne area youth are invited to participate in a spring egg hunt Saturday at Memorial Park on Polish Hill.

Preparations for the activities will take place from 10 to 11 a.m. The hunt for eggs will be from 12 to 1 p.m.

The event is sponsored by the Duquesne-West Mifflin Boys and Girls Club and PRIDE (People Residing in Duquesne Equally).

“The annual Easter egg hunt has been an activity in our city for the past 20 years,” said Patricia Bluett, director of the Boys and Girls Club. “This year it will be referred to as the spring egg hunt.”

 
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Water Authority Meeting With Property Owners After Leak

April 13, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

An employee of the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County is meeting today with property owners who were affected by a water main leak near Renziehausen Park.

Matt Junker, authority spokesman, said most of the damage seemed to be to external landscaping.

"We will have a contractor out there to clean up the yards and make landscape repairs as the weather permits," Junker said Friday.

MAWC crews were replacing a valve on a 16-inch water main on Palm Street Thursday morning when a nearby 12-inch line began to leak, the authority said.

 
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Water Main Leak Near Renzie Floods Homes, Closes Roads

April 12, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News

A water main near Renziehausen Park began leaking Thursday morning, flooding several homes and leaving parts of Haler Heights, the 11th Ward and Versailles Borough with low or no water pressure.

The incident happened just before 10:30 a.m. in the 700 block of Palm Street as crews from Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County worked to install a new valve on a 16-inch water main, said Matt Junker, authority spokesman.

"When the new valve was installed, a sleeve that holds it to the pipe shifted, causing a leak" in a nearby 12-inch pipe, Junker said.

The leak was isolated at about 2 p.m. Thursday, he said.

Homes in the area of Palm and King streets were flooded by the initial leak, and debris washed down onto Eden Park Boulevard, said Steve Kondrosky, McKeesport public works director.

 
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Man, 38, Injured in Palmgreen Street Shooting

April 11, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

McKeesport and Allegheny County police are investigating a shooting Wednesday night that sent a 38-year-old man to the hospital.

A spokeswoman for Allegheny County police said that city police and paramedics were dispatched at 9:30 p.m. to the 2900 block of Palmgreen Street after callers reported that someone had been shot. The victim was wounded in the stomach, police said, and taken to a trauma center for treatment.

No details on his condition were available Wednesday night.

Homicide detectives were investigating, the spokeswoman said.

 

Four Honored for Living Values of Respect, Dignity, Hope and Love

April 11, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko this month honored four people for living the "McKeesport Message" of Respect, Dignity, Hope and Love.

At April's city council meeting, proclamations were presented by Cherepko to McKeesport Area High School junior Maniya Mitchell for living the value of "Respect"; state Rep. Austin Davis for "Hope"; Mary Pat Soltis for "Love"; and Cindi Higdon for "Dignity."

Nominees were selected by the McKeesport Message Committee, part of Cherepko’s Select Committee on Crime and Violence. Nominations for the next round of awards must be received by May 4.

Biographies of the latest winners follow.

 
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'Peach' of a Musical Takes Stage This Week at MAHS

April 11, 2018 |

By Bonnijean Cooney Adams | Posted in: Entertainment

Members of the cast and orchestra pit rehearse a number from McKeesport Area High School's production of "James and the Giant Peach."


McKeesport Area High School graduate Carolyn Carreiro was hired by her alma mater in 2012 to design the program for the spring musical.

Now she’s producing her third musical there – “James and the Giant Peach” – based on the children’s book of the same name by Roald Dahl.

The musical, which opens Thursday and runs through Saturday in the high school auditorium, relates the story of a young orphan named James, who is taken in by two not-so-nice aunts, his only living relatives. He discovers the recipe for a magic potion that causes a peach tree in their yard to produce a giant fruit.

 
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Countywide Book Drive Underway for Needy Kids

April 10, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

New books for ages 5 through 12 are being collected at White Oak Park, Round Hill Park in Elizabeth Twp., and other county facilities to benefit children who receive meals through the summer food program.

Now through June 1, books can be dropped off at the White Oak Park office from 7:30 to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, and at the Round Hill Park office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Drop-off boxes also are available during regular business hours at the Human Services Building, 1 Smithfield St., downtown Pittsburgh; and at the County Executive’s Office in the Allegheny County Courthouse, 436 Grant St.

 
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Route 48 Delays Possible as Crews Replace Elizabeth Twp. Bridge

April 10, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Work has begun to replace a bridge on Route 48 in Elizabeth Twp., and delays are possible in the area, said a district spokesman for the state Department of Transportation.

Frank Gavlik & Sons, Inc. is the prime contractor on the project to replace a bridge that carries the highway over Boston Run in the Mt. Vernon section of the township. The project is expected to cost $804,000.

Minor restrictions with flaggers will occur during the first two weeks of the project while crews conduct shoulder work, the spokesman said. Once bridge replacement work begins, traffic will be restricted to a single, alternating lane, controlled by traffic signals.

The new bridge is expected to be complete in August.

 

Bus Company Owner Pleads Guilty to State Charges

April 10, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A city man has pleaded guilty to charges that his school bus company employed drivers without conducting required criminal background checks --- and in one case, hired a driver who didn't even have a license.

Martin W. Betchy, 36, of Haler Heights pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges of insurance fraud, theft by deception and endangering the welfare of children, state Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in a prepared release.

Sentencing for Betchy has been scheduled for June 28 before Allegheny County Judge Ed Borkowski, Shapiro said. Court records indicate that Betchy is currently free in lieu of $15,000 bond.

Betchy was the owner of Three Rivers Transit LLC, which beginning in 2012 had a contract to transport children to and from Propel Schools.

 
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Children's Author, Garden Expert Highlight National Library Week

April 09, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements, Duquesne News, White Oak News

It's National Library Week, but next week also promises to be exciting at Carnegie Library of McKeesport. On April 19, the library board, staff and local elected officials will break ground on a new parking lot next to the main building at 1507 Library Ave.

The long-awaited $81,000 parking lot, being funded through grants and donations, will add 30 sorely needed spaces for library patrons.

"We were sending out invitations, and someone said, 'Do you think I should put on there that we have limited parking?'" says Colleen Denne, library director.

This week promises to be busy --- even if parking is limited at times --- with events that include "Patron Appreciation Day" on Wednesday, a visit by local children's author Sydelle Pearl on Thursday and a keynote lecture by gardening expert Doug Oster on Friday.

 
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EA Prepares Non-Traditional Choice for School Musical With 'Once on This Island'

April 09, 2018 |

By Bonnijean Cooney Adams | Posted in: Entertainment

Above: The cast of "Once on This Island" at East Allegheny High School rehearses a scene from the upcoming show.


Amanda Rosco decided to depart from more traditional offerings and cross one item off her bucket list through East Allegheny’s spring musical, “Once on This Island.”

Running this Thursday, Friday and Saturday with shows at 7:30 p.m. daily, plus a 2 p.m. matinee Saturday, the musical is set in the Caribbean and focuses on the life of a peasant girl named Ti Moune, who falls in love with a young man from her island’s upper class.

The musical includes elements of “Romeo and Juliet” in the tale of the star-crossed lovers, plus a wager among the four gods who watch over the inhabitants of the island.

“These shows are my babies and major project each year,” said Rosco, who serves as director, producer and music director.

 
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New Duquesne Fire Chief Says Service 'Gets In Your Blood'

April 09, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

New Duquesne fire Chief Frank Cobb (Cami DiBattista photo, special to Tube City Almanac)

Around 40 hardworking volunteers make up the Duquesne Fire Department, according to Frank Cobb, who became fire chief in January.

“We are a family and we are committed to the safety of the community,” said the lifelong Duquesne resident.

A 22-year veteran volunteer, Cobb has devoted his life to serving Duquesne, both as a firefighter and also as the city’s constable. Prior to becoming chief, he served as assistant chief for the Duquesne Fire Department.

“The adrenaline you get from being a firefighter is indescribable,” he said. “It gets in your blood.”

 
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Investigation Continues in Pedestrian Accident Involving Police Car

April 06, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Police are continuing their investigation of an accident involving a patrol car and a pedestrian near the bus station on Lysle Boulevard.

The victim, a 64-year-old woman from Versailles, is recovering in an area hospital and was in good condition on Thursday, McKeesport police Chief Bryan Washowich said.

She was crossing Lysle Boulevard between Sinclair and Sheridan streets just before 9 p.m. Monday night when she was struck by a city police car.

 
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Driver Escapes Injury During Wild 10th Ward Crash

April 06, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A motorist from Port Vue escaped with only minor injuries following a wild crash Thursday night in McKeesport's 10th Ward that sheared off two utility poles and left a major road closed until this morning.

McKeesport police Chief Bryan Washowich said the cause of the accident is under investigation, but that speed was likely a factor.

The 34-year-old male driver was on West Fifth Avenue heading toward the Mansfield Bridge just before 8:27 p.m. when his Toyota sedan went out of control.

The vehicle struck a parked car in the 500 block, then collided with a house and a telephone pole before rolling over several times and striking another utility pole, Washowich said.

 
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Route 30 Closed in Both Directions as Collapse Continues

April 06, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News

Route 30 is now completely closed in East Pittsburgh after state highway officials said the ground underneath the road has continued to shift.

Westbound lanes --- from East Pittsburgh toward Forest Hills --- were closed Wednesday after officials said the roadway was settling and cracking, but one eastbound lane remained open.

At 1 p.m. Friday, the state Department of Transportation closed the remaining lane so that excavation work could begin. A PennDOT spokesman said it's too soon to say how long the closure will last, or how the road will be repaired.

The closure will be a headache for motorists; according to PennDOT traffic volume maps, about 22,000 cars use that stretch of Route 30 every day.

 
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Joyful Bloomer Garden Club Plans Trip to Bidwell Center

April 05, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Members of the Joyful Bloomer Garden Club will travel to Bidwell Training Center in Pittsburgh's Manchester neighborhood next week to learn about the plants grown and maintained by students.

The trip at 10 a.m. Wednesday will include a tour of the technical school, a spokeswoman said. Lunch will be prepared and served by the school's culinary arts department.

Non-members are welcome to attend, but should call (724) 600-9042. Entry to Bidwell is free, but the lunch will cost $10. The group will be meeting at Bidwell, located at 1815 Metropolitan St. in Pittsburgh.

 
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Rental Property Ordinance Seems Destined for Court Fight

April 05, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

McKeesport's ordinance requiring rental properties to be registered with the city and inspected for safety violations appears to be headed to court again --- and it's a fight officials seem to relish.

City resident Alan Wakefield on Wednesday attended McKeesport's city council meeting to call the ordinance "unconstitutional" and demand officials produce evidence that it's necessary.

It's the second month in a row that Wakefield has challenged city officials over the Regulated Rental Ordinance, which was passed by council in March 2017 on a 4-3 vote.

The ordinance requires rental properties to be registered with the city once per year at a fee of $50. It also requires every apartment or rented house to be inspected by the fire department every two years to ensure that smoke detectors are in place and that fire exits are not blocked.

 
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City Hopes Renzie Pavilion Renovations Will Be Complete By Memorial Day

April 04, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Renovations will begin soon to five pavilions at Renziehausen Park, in hopes that work will be complete by Memorial Day weekend.

McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko also confirmed that the dates for the city's annual International Village ethnic festival --- held at Renzie's Stephen Barry Field --- have been set for Aug. 14, 15 and 16.

At Wednesday's meeting, McKeesport City Council by 7-0 vote awarded a $184,750 contract to the lowest responsible bidder, Plavchak Construction Co. of Jefferson Hills, to paint and repair four pavilions and replace their roofs and signage.

In addition, two of the pavilions also will receive new LED lighting, benches and other updates. Funding for the work will come from the Allegheny Regional Asset District.

 
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New Public Meetings Scheduled to Discuss Transit Changes

April 04, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Announcements, Duquesne News

Stung by criticism from Mon Valley riders over proposed cuts to service, Port Authority of Allegheny County will hold new public meetings to get community input.

A meeting will be held at 6 p.m. April 12 at Rankin Christian Center, 230 Third Ave., in Rankin to discuss bus routes serving Rankin, Braddock, North Braddock, Edgewood, Swissvale, Regent Square and Wilkinsburg, state Rep. Austin Davis said Tuesday in a prepared statement.

Another meeting will be held in McKeesport at 6 p.m. May 10 at the Palisades, corner of Fifth Avenue and Water Street, Downtown.

 
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Duquesne Officials Working to Clear Up City Accounts

April 03, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

Duquesne officials are working to clear up delinquent and overdue accounts --- both those owed to the city and those owed by the city.

At council's March 27 meeting, Mayor Nickole Nesby reported that she received a letter from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development regarding a tax obligation for the city of Duquesne.

After contacting the state Department of Revenue, Nesby learned that Duquesne did not file its fourth-quarter 2017 withholding tax return, which was due Jan. 31.

Nesby said a lock has been temporarily placed on the city's account until the return is filed, making Duquesne ineligible for state grant funding. The problem, she told city council, is that some records from the fourth quarter of 2017 were not available.

 
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Pittsburgh Man Convicted in White Oak, Wilmerding Robberies

April 03, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News, White Oak News

A federal jury in Pittsburgh deliberated for only 20 minutes before convicting an East Liberty man in the robberies of two Mon-Yough banks.

Leonard W. Gibbons, 56, faces up to 22 years in prison and a half-million dollar fine after being convicted of breaking federal robbery and firearms laws, U.S. Attorney Scott W. Brady said today in a prepared release. Sentencing before Senior U.S. District Judge Donetta Ambrose was scheduled for July 30.

Prosecutors allege that on July 17, 2015, Gibbons stole nearly $8,000 from Compass Federal Savings Bank in Wilmerding. About four months later, on Nov. 19, 2015, Gibbons stole nearly $4,000 from First Commonwealth Bank in White Oak, prosecutors said.

 
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Duquesne Mayor, Manager Complete Course for Newly Elected Officials

April 03, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

(Cami DiBattista photo for Tube City Almanac)

With the help of a donation from a local congressman, Duquesne's mayor and city manager recently completed the Local Government Academy's Newly Elected Officials Course.

Duquesne Mayor Nickole Nesby said the tuition for her and Manager Cha Sayles was donated by U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle.

According to the academy's website, more than 1,000 local officials have completed the course over the past 30 years.

“This was a learning experience I will never forget,” Nesby said. “It was a great opportunity to learn about how our local government functions. I met some outstanding individuals and built relationships that I may have never had. Personally, I feel this course should be mandatory for every elected official.”

 
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Duquesne Council Votes to Terminate Longtime Employee

April 02, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

(Updated to clarify suspension versus termination.)

Duquesne City Council has voted to fire a longtime police secretary in a move that upset some residents.

At its March 27 meeting, council voted unanimously to terminate city employee Lori Achtzehn, who had worked for Duquesne for more than 40 years. Achtzehn was suspended at the time of the vote.

Mayor Nickole Nesby said that an investigation revealed Achtzehn violated Pennsylvania Justice Network and PennDOT Driver License Information System policies.

Nesby said Achtzehn accessed records and files from the system without cause and accused Achtzehn of 21 violations over a two-year timeframe.

But Achtzehn said Nesby's comments at the council meeting were slanderous and that the mayor is attacking employees held over from former Mayor Phil Krivacek's administration.

 
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