Water Authority Offers Tips for Protecting Pipes During Freeze

January 29, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Cha già José photo via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons BY-SA 2.0.)


With temperatures predicted to drop below 0 in the Mon-Yough area this week, the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County has issued tips for keeping water pipes from freezing:

Disconnect and drain outdoor hoses, so freeze conditions don't burst the faucet or pipe to which the hose is connected

Insulate pipes or faucets in unheated areas (garages, attics, crawl spaces) before freezing temperatures arrive

Consider installing "heat tape" or "heat cable" on all exposed water lines. Heat tape can be found at hardware and home improvement stores.

 
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School Canceled, Warnings Issued as Region Prepares for Freeze

January 29, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

(The Ohio River froze at Point State Park, Pittsburgh, in January 2014. Photo by Matt Niemi via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 2.0.)


(This story will be updated with new information as it becomes available)

Local school districts are canceling classes and McKeesport is opening a warming shelter as a so-called "polar vortex" swoops into the Mon-Yough area this week.

McKeesport Area, Clairton, East Allegheny and South Allegheny school districts have canceled all classes and school-related activities for students on Wednesday and Thursday, according to spokespersons, while Norwin School District will be closed Wednesday.

Penn State Greater Allegheny also will be closed Wednesday.

The National Weather Service in Moon Twp. has issued a wind-chill advisory from 5 a.m. Wednesday through 5 p.m. Thursday. Forecasters said that with air temperatures dropping to near 0 degrees on Wednesday afternoon, and winds reaching 30 mph, the temperatures will feel like 20 below 0.

 
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Vacant White Oak Property Could Be Headed to Land Bank

January 28, 2019 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

(Allegheny County real estate photo)


White Oak council has given its approval for the transfer of a vacant house on Ohio Avenue to the Tri-COG Land Bank.

The one-story home at 1808 Ohio will only be transferred if McKeesport Area School District and Allegheny County consent, said Dave Pasternak, White Oak council president.

Pasternak said he's hopeful that the transfer, if approved, will result in the house being refurbished and sold to a new owner. According to county tax records, the house has been tax-delinquent for several years.

 
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County Controller Seeks Public Comment on UPMC, Highmark Split

January 28, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

Allegheny County Controller Chelsa Wagner will hold a public meeting at Carnegie Library of McKeesport to find out how residents are being affected by the upcoming split between UPMC Health System and Highmark.

The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 4 at the library, 1507 Library Ave.

Advance registration is suggested by calling (412) 672-0625.

A spokesman for Wagner said people who cannot attend are invited to submit their stories via the county controller's website.

UPMC has been feuding with Highmark for years. UPMC operates its own health insurance plan in competition with Highmark's Blue Cross and Blue Shield programs, while Highmark is the parent company of the Allegheny Health Network, which includes doctors and hospitals that compete with UPMC's.

 
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Legislators Plan Public Hearing on Clairton Works Fire, Aftermath

January 28, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

U.S. Steel: Repairs to pollution equipment expected to take four months

(U.S. Steel photo)


Four state legislators will hold a town-hall style public hearing in Clairton to discuss a Dec. 24 fire at U.S. Steel's Clairton Plant, and the aftermath.

State Sen. Jim Brewster said that joint Senate-House Democratic Policy Committee hearing will begin at 12 noon Feb. 7 at the Clairton Municipal Building, 551 Ravensburg Blvd.

Also scheduled to attend, along with officials from the Allegheny County Health Department, are state Sen. Jay Costa and state Reps. Austin Davis and Bill Kortz.

Meanwhile, U.S. Steel said that the pollution control equipment damaged in the fire could be out of service for up to four months, but that the company is working "around the clock to make the necessary repairs."

The company has set up a special website at www.clairton.uss.com to provide updates directly to the public.

 
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Duquesne Hoping to Emerge From Distressed Status

January 27, 2019 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

A distressed municipality for nearly 30 years, Duquesne is hoping to be self-sufficient in the near future.

At last week's council meeting, the city's Act 47 Coordinator, George Dougherty, reported that Duquesne is coming to the end of its final five-year Act 47 plan.

“Beginning in 2020, we have to get the finances and management in a place where the city will be able to float on (its) own and come out of Act 47 status,” said Dougherty, who was appointed by the state in October to represent the community. “I’m really hoping to see Duquesne move forward in becoming self-sufficient.”

Dougherty has been working to develop a budget for Duquesne, which has been an Act 47 municipality since 1991. Recently, he began drafting an "exit plan" from the assistance program.

 
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NV Twp. Commissioners OK Grant Application for Fairhaven Park

January 25, 2019 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: North Versailles Twp. News

(North Versailles Twp. photo)


North Versailles Twp. will seek $140,234 from the Allegheny County Community Infrastructure and Tourism Fund for renovations at Fairhaven Park.

At their January meeting, commissioners authorized Parks and Recreation Director Lisa Green to apply for a grant from the CITF fund.

In other business:

The cost to rent the hall at the township Community Center has gone up, from $175 to $250 for residents and from $300 to $400 for non-residents, effective immediately. Commissioners voted to approve the change.

 
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White Oak Council Moves on Delinquent Garbage Accounts

January 25, 2019 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

White Oak Council has moved to file municipal liens for nearly a half-million dollars in delinquent garbage accounts.

At their January meeting, council members authorized the law firm of Dodaro, Matta and Cambest to file liens for unpaid garbage collection fees from the past three years. Filing the liens will cost $19,938.08.

Last month, council authorized borough officials to "scrub" the delinquent accounts to remove the names of demolished properties and deceased residents, so that officials could determine which accounts were still active.

 
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Free Tax Prep Available for Local Seniors

January 25, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Free income tax preparation help will be available for area senior citizens in February and March.

The sessions will be held on Fridays at the McKeesport office of state Rep. Austin Davis, located at 627 Lysle Blvd.

The AARP Tax Aide Program will offer the free assistance from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Fridays from Feb. 22 through March 29. Appointments must be made in advance and can be scheduled by calling (412) 664-0035.

Davis said his staff also will be available to help senior citizens with Property Tax or Rent Rebate applications and enroll in any of the state’s programs for which they’re eligible.

 
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Boil-Water Advisory Cancelled for Port Vue, 10th Ward

January 24, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Announcements

A "boil-water" advisory for Port Vue and McKeesport's 10th Ward has been lifted.

The Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County announced Thursday morning that the advisory, imposed following a water line break on Tuesday, has been cancelled following two water-quality tests.

The advisory was a precaution and no problems were found, said the authority, adding, "we apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience."

 

Missing Dravosburg Woman Found Dead, Police Say; Suspect Arrested

January 24, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Remains believed to be those of a Dravosburg woman who has been missing since Nov. 6 were found Wednesday morning just outside of Sutersville, police said.

Heather Rene Short, 46, was last seen at a residence in the Homeville section of West Mifflin where she was visiting friends. Allegheny County police have arrested a man identified as Dale Cooper, 36, no address given, in connection with her death.

Cooper was arrested Wednesday night in Homestead and will be charged with criminal homicide, tampering with physical evidence and abuse of a corpse, Allegheny County police Lt. Ken Ruckel said in a prepared statement. Cooper is currently in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting formal arraignment, police said.

 
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Boil-Water Advisory Could Be Lifted Thursday

January 23, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Officials with the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County are hopeful that a boil-water advisory for residents of Port Vue and McKeesport's 10th Ward could be lifted on Thursday.

Matthew Junker, authority spokesman, said MAWC is waiting for test results of a water sample taken Wednesday morning. The test --- checking for possible contamination --- takes 24 hours.

"If we get the results we expect, and the (state Department of Environmental Protection) gives approval, it could be lifted in the A.M.," Junker said.

About 2,100 customers have been under the boil-water advisory since Tuesday morning, when the authority detected a loss of water pressure and found a broken six-inch water main on Joy Street in Port Vue.

 
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NV Twp. Anniversary Committee to Meet Thursday

January 22, 2019 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: Announcements, North Versailles Twp. News

The North Versailles Twp. 150th Anniversary Planning Committee meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday at the municipal building, 1401 Greensburg Ave. Anyone interested in serving on the committee is welcome to attend.

Other Upcoming Events

North Versailles Twp. Family Night, including snow tubing, will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. Feb. 28 at Boyce Park. To attend, RSVP by Feb. 25 to the township's Parks and Recreation Department at (412) 823-6602, extension 104.

The Art and Apple Juice Painting Classes for children ages 5-12 will be held Feb. 1, Feb. 8, March 1 and March 29 at the North Versailles Twp. community center, 1401 Greensburg Ave. RSVP to the Parks and Recreation department.

 

Former Wilmerding Y to Reopen as Community Center

January 22, 2019 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: North Versailles Twp. News

The Wilmerding YMCA was expanded in 2006 at a cost of $750,000. (Photo copyright Penner & Associates.)


The former Wilmerding YMCA is scheduled to re-open early this year as the new Wilmerding Community Center, Inc., according to Peter McGinty, the center’s executive director.

The center, located on Ice Plant Hill Road, features a fitness center, swimming pool, child care day camps and the Silver Sneakers program.

At Wednesday's meeting of the North Versailles Twp. commissioners, McGinty said the new community center will need the support of all of the area communities.

“That’s why I’m here at North Versailles,” McGinty told the commissioners. “I met with the school district, I spoke with the East Allegheny Business Association and met with (state Sen.) Jim Brewster and (state Rep. Joe) Markosek.”

 
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Boil Water Advisory in Place for Port Vue, 10th Ward

January 22, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

Updated with additional details, 8 p.m.

(Map courtesy Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County.)


Officials have issued a "boil water" advisory for Port Vue and McKeesport's 10th Ward following a water main break on Joy Street near Romine Avenue, up the hill from the 15th Avenue Bridge.

A 6-inch water main broke at approximately 9:30 a.m. Monday, causing a loss of water pressure throughout the system, said Matthew Junker, a spokesman for the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County.

About 2,100 customers were affected, he said. Crews were still making repairs on Monday night.

The loss of water pressure could have allowed contamination to enter water lines through back-flow, Junker said, and until further notice, MAWC customers in Port Vue and the city's 10th Ward should boil their tap water before using it to drink, cook or make ice.

 
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412 Food Rescue Seeks McKeesport, West Mifflin Volunteers

January 22, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Announcements

(Photo courtesy 412 Food Rescue)


A local non-profit agency that has delivered 5 million pounds of unwanted food to needy families is asking for more volunteers from the Mon-Yough area.

“We are in need of volunteers in and around McKeesport and West Mifflin so food that is made available as a donation can be delivered to organizations that distribute it,” said Leah Lizarondo, chief executive officer of 412 Food Rescue.  “It’s a chance to make a local impact on both food waste and hunger.”

Most food banks only accept non-perishable items --- such as canned and boxed foods --- because of the difficulty of storing and handling fresh food.

But 412 Food Rescue uses a smartphone app and the Internet to quickly match surplus perishable and fresh foods from supermarkets and restaurants with food banks. Technology writers have described it as the "Uber of food recovery."

 
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Pancake Breakfast Scheduled Feb. 23 at Renzie

January 21, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

McKeesport Unit of the NAACP will hold its annual pancake breakfast Feb. 23 at Renziehausen Park, a spokeswoman said.

The event is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 12 noon at Jacob Woll Pavilion. The cost is $8 for adults and $4 for children 12 and under.

The menu will include pancakes, sausage, fruit cocktail, coffee, tea, water and juice, and assorted desserts for sale.

For more information, call (412) 292-5852.

 

Mon Yough Chorale Seeks Singers for Spring Season

January 21, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Do you like to sing? Have you sung in high school, college or even in the shower? The Mon Yough Chorale is looking for you.

Spokeswoman Dianne Ribecca said the community chorus, based in White Oak, is always open to new members. The first gathering of the spring season will be held at 7 p.m. Jan. 27 at Sampson's Mills Presbyterian Church, 1665 Lincoln Way.

 
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Free Tax Preparation Help Available Through April 11

January 18, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Photo by David Reber via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons)


Now through April 11, Mon Valley residents may be eligible to get their federal, state and local tax returns filed for free under a program being offered again this year by the Human Services Center Corp. and United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania.

Stephanie Eson, a spokeswoman for the Turtle Creek-based HSCC, said the preparers are certified by the IRS, and there are no hidden fees or charges, and taxpayers who are eligible for refunds will get to keep those refunds.

Participants may qualify if their total income in 2018 was up to $30,000 for an individual or $50,000 for a household, Eson said. Appointments are required and can be made calling 2-1-1.

 
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$210K Pledged for Computer Science in Local Schools

January 18, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Announcements

(Photo by Classroom Camera via Flickr. Licensed under Creative Commons CC-BY-2.0.)


Five local school districts will each receive $35,000 grants to integrate computer science education into classroom lessons at all grade levels.

In addition, a $35,000 grant under the Pennsylvania Department of Education's PASmart initiative also has been awarded to the Mon Valley School in Jefferson Hills to provide targeted computer science education to students with special needs.

Duquesne City, East Allegheny, Norwin, South Allegheny and Steel Valley are among 221 school districts receiving the PASmart grants.

“As computer technology continues to evolve, it is important that students can experience and learn new computer skills first hand,” state Sen. Jim Brewster said in a prepared statement. “I am pleased that students in our area will benefit from Pennsylvania’s grants dedicated to improving computer science programs in local schools.”

 
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Nesby Issues Statement Following Tense Meeting

January 17, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Duquesne News

Following January's city council meeting when tensions ran high between residents and officials, Duquesne Mayor Nickole Nesby issued this statement:

"It’s important for everyone to be on the same page because residents get confused. The city values community organizations such as the Duquesne Youth Football Association. Sports play a role in bringing communities together, increasing social and cultural impact, developing social capital, reducing crime and anti-social behavior.

"It is my hope that more people participate as volunteers, increase the culture of respect and tolerance among young people, reduce fear of crime, create a more sustainable community with local pride, provide people with a greater voice and influence over decision-making, and increase the capacity to own community assets."

 

Duquesne Residents Vent Frustrations at City Council Meeting

January 17, 2019 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

Duquesne residents voice their frustrations during January's city council meeting. (Cami DiBattista photo, special to Tube City Almanac)


Read More: Duquesne Mayor Nickole Nesby had additional thoughts following this meeting


The first Duquesne City Council meeting of the year was emotionally charged, as a roomful of residents vented their frustrations with Mayor Nickole Nesby and other officials.

Several representatives of the Duquesne Youth Football Association questioned city officials about allegations that the organization is being dissolved.

They alleged that the Duquesne Police Department had “spread rumors of drug money being funneled through the organization.”

One spokesperson for the youth football association said the organization is unhappy with Police Chief Tom Dunlevy and the department, and said he feels the city’s black population is being unfairly targeted.

 
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Missing Girl, 16, Found Safe in City; Two Men Jailed

January 17, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

An East Pittsburgh man is being held without bail on charges that he kidnapped a 16-year-old girl from her home in Penn Hills.

The victim, Marjani Aquil, was found Wednesday night by McKeesport police at a residence in Christy Park, a county police spokeswoman said. Aquil had suffered facial injuries during her abduction and was treated at a local hospital, county police said.

Jermaine Laquay Rodgers, 19, was arrested by McKeesport police and the Allegheny County Police SWAT team following a three-hour standoff.

He is being held in the Allegheny County Jail without bond pending a preliminary hearing Jan. 28 before Magisteral District Judge Anthony L. DeLuca, court documents indicate.

 
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State Officials Call for More Accountability from U.S. Steel, Health Dept.

January 16, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

(Roy Luck photo via Wikimedia Commons. Licensed under Creative Commons CC-BY-2.0.)


Correction appended, Jan. 17:

Three elected state officials are demanding more accountability from U.S. Steel and the Allegheny County Health Department in the wake of the announcement that sulfur dioxide emissions from the Clairton Plant have exceeded safe levels six times since Dec. 24.

State Sens. Jim Brewster and Jay Costa and state Rep. Austin Davis are calling on the state House and Senate Democratic Policy Committees to hold a joint hearing in the Mon-Yough area, which has been under an "air quality alert" since Jan. 8.

Last week, local residents criticized the health department for waiting 16 days before issuing the alert, which warned children, the elderly and people with heart and lung conditions to avoid strenuous outdoor activities until further notice.

"The public needs to know sooner and get better information on how to react," Brewster, Costa and Davis said in a joint release Wednesday.

 
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| News

Dravosburg Man Charged Following Hit-Run Accident

January 16, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A Dravosburg man faces charges after McKeesport police accused him of deliberately striking a car being driven by an off-duty police officer, and then fleeing the scene.

Edward M. Gibson, 31, is charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, aggravated assault, recklessly endangering another person, leaving the scene of an accident involving an attended vehicle and reckless driving.

He remains free on his own recognizance pending a preliminary hearing at 9 a.m. March 28 before Magisterial District Judge Richard D. Olasz Jr.

McKeesport police said the off-duty officer, whose name was not released, was on Maple Avenue just before 11 p.m. Jan. 5 when another driver in a Jeep started to tailgate him.

 
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Library Sets Book Discussions, Craft Programs

January 11, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Photo courtesy Carnegie Library of McKeesport via Facebook.)


Book discussions and craft programs are on the schedule this month at the Carnegie Library of McKeesport, 1507 Library Ave.

For more information or to register for any program, call (412) 672-0625 or visit the library's website.

Postcard History of McKeesport: Local author and historian Michelle Wardle-Eggers will discuss the 2011 book "McKeesport: Postcard History" at 3 p.m. Jan. 19. Wardle-Eggers is the former executive director of the McKeesport Regional History & Heritage Center and received her master's degree in history from Kent State University. She wrote the book along with local historian and photographer John W. Barna.

 
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White Oak Legion Schedules Oldies Dances

January 11, 2019 |

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

DJs Candy and Mike will spin the tunes on Saturday (Jan. 12) and Jan. 19 when American Legion Gen. Smedley D. Butler Post 701 in White Oak holds its next oldies dances.

Doors open at 7 p.m. and music continues until 11 p.m., a spokesman said. Admission is $5 and all proceeds benefit veterans' programs.

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

 

Health Department Responds to Criticism Over Clairton Plant Warning

January 11, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Brett Ciccotelli photo via Flickr. Licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC 2.0).


Mon-Yough residents reacted angrily after the Allegheny County Health Department warned people with heart and lung conditions to avoid strenuous outdoor activities due to equipment problems at U.S. Steel's Clairton Plant.

On social media, they questioned why the department waited 16 days before issuing the warning.

The health department's alert, issued Wednesday, cautioned Mon-Yough area residents --- especially children, the elderly and those suffering from conditions such as asthma, emphysema or bronchitis --- to avoid strenuous outdoor activities until further notice.

According to the health department, sulfur dioxide emissions at the Clairton Plant have gone above acceptable levels six times since a fire on Dec. 24 that knocked out two pieces of emissions equipment known as "gas dispatcher" stations.

 
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| News

Emergency Training Comes to City Churches Through UPMC Program

January 10, 2019 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: News

Dale Mitchell, an EMT with UPMC, works with participants at a Stop the Bleed training seminar at Noah's Ark Community Center in McKeesport. (Photo by Richard Finch Jr., special to Tube City Almanac)


“Sometimes it’s hard to get people to step up and be interested in something until it hits home, thinking it’s never going to touch them,” said Rev. Earlene Coleman, pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in McKeesport.

Even before last year’s synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh, an increasing number of law enforcement, emergency medical personnel and school district employees had signed up for Stop the Bleed, a training initiative to prepare people to assist victims in life-threatening situations until emergency medical personnel arrive at the scene.

UPMC, in partnership with Copeland Regional Trauma Council, is leading the nation's largest "Stop the Bleed" initiative. Developed in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook school shooting in 2012, the program's goal is to train bystanders and first responders to stop bleeding using dressings, compression and tourniquets.

On Saturday, Bethlehem hosted a 90-minute "Stop the Bleed" class at Noah’s Ark Community Center in McKeesport.

 
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Charity Hoops Tourney Will Raise Funds for Scholarships

January 09, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, Sports

A charity basketball game on Saturday at Penn State's Wunderley Gymnasium in McKeesport will raise money to support scholarships for Hispanic students in the Pittsburgh area.

The game is being co-hosted by Penn State Greater Allegheny Campus and the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. It tips off at 2:30 p.m.

“We are so pleased to be teaming up with the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for this event,” said Jacqueline Edmondson, chancellor and chief academic officer at Greater Allegheny. “The chamber has been a wonderful community partner and incredibly supportive of our students through their scholarship programs.”

 
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County: Clairton Plant Fire Leaves Potential for Unhealthy Air

January 09, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News

U.S. Steel's Clairton Plant in a 2010 photo by Patrick Cain. (Via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons 2.0)


An accident three weeks ago that damaged two pieces of equipment at U.S. Steel's Clairton Plant has the potential to create unhealthy air conditions in the Mon Valley, Allegheny County officials said Wednesday.

The county Health Department is warning residents --- especially those with pre-existing heart or lung conditions --- to limit their outdoor activities until further notice.

The Clairton Plant produces coke, a fuel used in the steelmaking process, by baking coal at extremely high temperatures to remove impurities.

Jim Kelly, deputy director for environmental health at the Health Department, said a fire on Dec. 24 damaged two "gas dispatcher" stations, which help to remove pollutants.

 
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Casino Night March 2 Will Support Port Vue Dog Park

January 07, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Above: Kenneth Schroder and Mike Diehl work on pillars for a sign at Cindy's Memorial Bark Park, currently being completed in Port Vue. (Photo courtesy Cindy's Memorial Bark Park via Facebook.)


Volunteers will hold a "casino night" on March 2 to support operation of a dog park being constructed in Port Vue, a spokeswoman said.

"Wild, Wild Woof" will be held at the Glassport American Legion, 417 Monongahela Ave., said Holly Turkovic, one of the organizers. Doors open at 6 p.m. 

Tickets cost $20 in advance or $25 at the door. The event will include card games, raffles, a silent auction, a buffet supper, beer, door prizes and music by "D.J. Dale."

Proceeds will benefit Cindy's Memorial Bark Park, which is nearing completion on 3.5 acres of land off of Portsmouth Drive in the borough.

 
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LifeSpan Campaign Distributed Holiday Cookies to 709 Seniors

January 07, 2019 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Approximately 700 Mon Valley area seniors had a sweeter December after volunteers baked more than 6,300 holiday cookies --- 525 dozen --- to be distributed along with Meals on Wheels.

LifeSpan, a non-profit agency based in Homestead that serves seniors throughout the Mon Valley and South Hills, last week issued a "thank you" to everyone who baked or donated to its ninth-annual “Sweet Holiday Wishes” cookie campaign.

Each senior -- 709 total --- received a half-dozen cookies, a spokeswoman said.

 
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Railroad Operations Disturbing Sleep, 10th Ward Residents Say

January 04, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

A CSX train passes through Downtown McKeesport in 2016. Residents of lower 10th Ward say nighttime railroad operations are knocking things from walls and disturbing their sleep, but the railroad says nothing's changed. (D.A. Liscomb photo via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.)

The author of this story has a conflict of interest. See editor's note.


It sounds like "a pile of steel (being) dropped into an empty barge at two in the morning."

That's how Dwayne Yeager of lower 10th Ward described CSX Railroad's late-night and early-morning operations in his neighborhood.

Yeager, who is retired from factory work, has lived in his home since 1994, so he's used to the sound of trains passing through. He told McKeesport City Council on Wednesday that it's not the normal noise of train operations bothering him and his neighbors.

"That noise is nothing," Yeager said. "What they're doing is hooking and unhooking cars by camera, without a brakeman, at all hours of the day and night. They're shaking things off the walls and off of the windows."

 
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| News

Few Details Released in Connection With Monday Shooting

January 03, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Few details have been released in connection with a shooting Monday night that left a Christy Park woman in critical condition.

Friends and family members have identified the victim as 46-year-old Stacey Stinson. A crowdfunding page has been set up at GoFundMe to raise money for her medical care.

McKeesport police referred questions to Allegheny County police.

Allegheny County police said in a prepared statement that the victim was shot once inside her home on 31st Avenue just before 7 p.m. Monday.

 
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White Oak Standoff Ends Peacefully, No Charges Filed

January 03, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Crime and Police News, White Oak News

A White Oak man was hospitalized following a two-hour standoff with police and the Allegheny County SWAT team.

No charges have been filed but the investigation remains open, White Oak police Chief Mark Sargent said.

Police were dispatched to a home on State Street just before 4 a.m. Wednesday when callers reported a 20-year-old man living there was suicidal.

As officers entered the front door, Sargent said, they heard a shot from the second floor.

 
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Police Chief Announces Retirement, Effective Feb. 1

January 02, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Crime and Police News, News

McKeesport's police chief will wrap up an almost 26-year career with the department on Feb. 1.

Bryan J. "B.J." Washowich, who has served as chief since 2010, has announced his retirement. His successor has not yet been named.

Washowich, 47, grew up in White Oak, where his father, the late Wayne Washowich, served as a police officer, planning and zoning director, and code enforcement officer.

 
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City Targets More Structures for Demolition

January 02, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

Above: 1724 Butler St., McKeesport, via Google Maps.


More than 140 additional houses and commercial structures in McKeesport are facing condemnation proceedings and possible demolition.

City officials have advertised and will hold hearings at 1 p.m. Jan. 9 and 11 on 147 properties, located in practically every section of McKeesport.

But the list particularly targets blighted neighborhoods along Versailles Avenue, including 15 houses on Butler Street, 14 on Soles Street and eight on Jersey Street.

 
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