Upcoming Film Shooting Some Scenes in City

November 07, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Emmy winner Rachel Brosnahan is co-producing “I’m Your Woman,” an upcoming Amazon Studios release which is filming some scenes in McKeesport this month. (Submitted photo)

Hollywood is back in McKeesport: Amazon Studios is using locations in the city for scenes in an upcoming movie starring Rachel Brosnahan.

Film crews used The Elbow Room restaurant on West Fifth Avenue this week, as well as the former Weinberg's Texaco station on the opposite side of Rebecca Street.

Brosnahan, who recently won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in Amazon Studio's series “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” is the lead in a movie titled “I’m Your Woman,” according to the Pittsburgh Film Office.

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City Officials Reverse Decision on Trash-Hauling; Will Contract Services

November 07, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Want to buy a garbage truck?

McKeesport officials have reversed their decision to bring trash collection in-house and will instead contract for services in 2020 with County Hauling of Rostraver Twp., Westmoreland County.

At Wednesday's meeting, council by 7-0 vote approved a contract with the trash collector, a division of Westmoreland Sanitary Landfill, to pick up waste and recycling citywide beginning Jan. 1 at a cost of $79.75 per ton. The company will replace Big's Hauling as McKeesport's residential trash collector.

Big's was charging $112 per ton, City Administrator Tom Maglicco said.

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City Voters Choosing Mayor,
School Board on Tuesday

November 04, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News, Politics & Elections, White Oak News

Other stories:

Politicians Endorse 'Marsy's Law,' But Some Worry it Goes Too Far

County DA Race Adds Excitement to Municipal Elections

Some of the excitement over the hotly contested race for Allegheny County district attorney has spilled into local politics.

Lisa Middleman, an independent who is challenging incumbent District Attorney Stephen Zappala Jr., has lent her support to Fawn Walker-Montgomery, who is running for mayor of McKeesport.

A former city councilwoman, Walker-Montgomery is challenging Mayor Michael Cherepko, who has said he's running on the strength of the "McKeesport Rising" initiative that his administration launched two years ago.

Cherepko, a former city council president and McKeesport Area school teacher, is seeking his third term as mayor. The Democrat is asking voters to keep together the team responsible for "McKeesport Rising."

"McKeesport Rising" has targeted neighborhoods throughout the city for removal of blighted buildings, street paving and infrastructure improvements, as well as expansion of facilities at Renziehausen Park and along the city's waterfront.

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Local Firefighter Remembered for Efforts After 9/11

November 01, 2019 |

By Chris Baumann | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News, White Oak News

Versailles volunteer firefighter Nick Ursta, then a volunteer from White Oak, responded to New York City following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. (Submitted photo)

When the towers of the World Trade Center fell on Sept. 11, 2001, volunteer firefighter Nick Ursta didn't wait, says his friend Perry Gricar.

“He didn’t even think twice about going, just beelined and was right out there,” says Gricar, chief of the Versailles Volunteer Fire Co., who served alongside Ursta for 14 years. “He was a very selfless person, the kind of guy who would give you the shirt off his back, who you could call at 3 a.m. Just an all around genuine, great person.”

Ursta died Tuesday --- on his 52nd birthday --- of complications of mesothelioma. Family and friends believe he developed the form of cancer after a week of breathing the toxins in the air at Ground Zero following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

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Drum Major Sets Pace Both On, Off Field

October 29, 2019 |

By Bonnijean Cooney Adams | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Senior drum major Olivia Bakaturski looks over Tiger Band members in the stands at the Franklin Regional away game on Oct. 18. (Bonnijean Cooney Adams photo, special to Tube City Almanac)

McKeesport Area High School Tiger Band senior Olivia Bakaturski has come a long way musically since she first considered learning to play clarinet back in in fifth grade.

“I originally wanted to do percussion,” she said with a little laugh following a recent halftime show she directed as drum major.

Bakaturski and her band mates found success this season with the group’s industrial-themed “A Day in the Mill,” performed at football games and competitions. The Tiger Band was named Tournament of Bands Chapter 8, Group 2-0 Champions on Oct. 25.

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Cornel West: Not Optimistic, But Hopeful, About Triumph of Justice

October 29, 2019 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Author, teacher and philosopher Cornel West meets with Penn Staters prior to Friday evening's discussion at Wunderley Gymnasium in McKeesport. (Photo courtesy Penn State Greater Allegheny via Facebook)

Cornel West is not optimistic about the triumph of equality and justice. But he's hopeful.

There's a difference, he said.

During a discussion Friday night at Wunderley Gymnasium of Penn State Greater Allegheny Campus in McKeesport, West, a philosopher, author and activist, was asked if he found reasons to be hopeful and optimistic about the future lives of Black Americans.

“There is a difference between hope and optimism,” he said. “I'm not optimistic at all, I've never been an optimist.”

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MASD School Director Honored
for 45 Years’ Service

October 27, 2019 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Mary Jane Keller’s final meeting as a McKeesport Area School Board member was a bittersweet occasion for district officials and her fellow school directors.

At Wednesday's school board meeting, Superintendent Mark Holtzman Jr. presented Keller with a bouquet of flowers as well as a plaque recognizing her for a combined 45 years of service to the district, first as a teacher, and later as a school director.

Keller has been on the school board for eight years and served as vice-president for the past four.

An emotional Keller said, “It is my hope that I have been a positive voice for children.”

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State Funds Will Aid Roundhouse’s Clean-Up

October 23, 2019 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

(Tube City Almanac photo)

The owner of the old McKeesport Connecting Railroad roundhouse in the city’s industrial park will use a state grant to remove environmental hazards and prepare the building for potential new tenants.

Regional Industrial Development Corp. has received $671,200 to perform remediation at the roundhouse; the old U.S. Steel National Works guardhouse on Locust Street; and the open hearth building at the old U.S. Steel Duquesne Works.

The grant, announced Wednesday by state Rep. Austin Davis, is from the state Industrial Sites Reuse Program, which helps fund the cleanup of environmental contamination at industrial sites that are going to be used for housing, businesses or recreation areas.

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Boil-Water Advisory Lifted;
Authority Says Tests Were Clear

October 16, 2019 |

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

A boil-water advisory that has been in effect for McKeesport-area residents since Saturday night has been lifted.

The Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County announced Wednesday morning that  water samples over two consecutive days from the city, Port Vue, Versailles and White Oak were all clear.

Storage tank levels are at normal conditions so it is no longer necessary to conserve water, said Matt Junker, authority spokesman.

The advisory was put into place after an intake pump at the McKeesport Water Treatment Plant failed Saturday evening, flooding the facility and forcing it to be closed temporarily. That caused water pressure to fall throughout the system, leading the authority to impose water conservation orders for some communities and a boil-water advisory for all four communities served by the plant.

About 16,000 customers were affected.


Boil-Water Advisory Could Be Lifted Tomorrow

October 15, 2019 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News, White Oak News

Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County's McKeesport Water Treatment Plant (photo courtesy MAWC)

A boil-water advisory for about 16,000 customers in McKeesport, Port Vue, Versailles and White Oak could be lifted on Wednesday.

Matt Junker, spokesman for the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County, said the first round of testing on water from the McKeesport Water Treatment Plant was clear of any hazards.

"We are hopeful that the advisory can be lifted Wednesday after a second round of good results," Junker said Tuesday.

The authority also provided additional details of the incident on Saturday evening that forced the plant to be shut down, causing a loss of water pressure in parts of the McKeesport area and leading to the boil-water advisory.

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