City Making Progress on Demolition Backlog

May 04, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

The city is making progress on tearing down abandoned houses and is getting cooperation from at least one of the country's largest banks.

At last night's work session, McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko told council that at least a dozen vacant houses have been torn down by city public works employees since Jan. 1, and said likely "40 to 50" have been demolished in the past two years, when McKeesport purchased a piece of heavy equipment known as an excavator.

Paying an outside contractor to demolish a house can cost $8,000 to $10,000. At those rates, Cherepko said, the city's excavator "is more than paid for."

In at least one case, he said, the home mortgage division of Wells Fargo & Co. transferred an abandoned house to the city, along with $10,000 to pay for its demolition. The bank had taken ownership of the house in a foreclosure when the previous owner defaulted on their mortgage.

 
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Valley Men Plead Guilty in Cocaine Ring

May 02, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Two Mon Valley men pleaded guilty in federal court to charges they helped traffic cocaine into the Homewood section of Pittsburgh.

Tracey Yancey, 53, of East Pittsburgh pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to drug possession with intent to distribute and unlawful possession of a firearm, while David Irwin, 43, of White Oak pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute, U.S. Attorney David Hickton said today.

Both pleas were entered before U.S. District Judge Mark R. Hornak in federal court in Pittsburgh.

Yancey and Irwin were both arrested following a joint investigation by the FBI and local police that began in December 2013 after a wave of drug-related violence in Homewood.

 
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1-Adam-12: Your Cars Are Ready

April 29, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

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A sharp-eyed reader who would prefer to remain anonymous spotted these vintage 1970s Plymouths and AMC Matadors being turned into police cars at a shop on Lebanon Road, near the West Mifflin municipal building, and sent us this photo.
 
"Is the West Mifflin police department going retro?" our reader asked. Maybe. Or else Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane of "The Dukes of Hazzard" is in town --- he did wreck an awful lot of similar police cars on that show.
 
We don't know for sure, but it seems more likely that they're being prepared for the new Netflix series "Mindhunters," which starts filming in Pittsburgh in May. In March, Pittsburgh's Nancy Mosser Casting put out a request asking owners of cars from the 1960s through early 1980s if they were interested in participating.
 
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Greater Allegheny Prof Wins Teaching Award

April 28, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

A professor at Penn State's Greater Allegheny Campus in McKeesport is one of six statewide honored with the university's award for excellence in teaching.

Megan L. Nagel, professor of chemistry, was named on April 22 one of the recipients of the George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching for 2016.

The award is named after Penn State’s seventh president.

Nagel says she views learning as a "two-way street."

“A classroom that allows for students’ questions, a lack of judgment, and a call to think critically contributes to an environment that’s ripe for learning,” she says.

 
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Local Student to Give TEDx Talk

April 28, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Diwas Timsina has come a long way. Now studying information sciences and technology at Penn State Greater Allegheny in McKeesport, he is originally from Bhutan, and was raised for 14 years in Jhapa, Nepal, in a refugee camp.  His family and 70,000 other Bhutanese were forced to leave the country due to the interethnic conflict that occurred in the 1990’s.

“We faced so many struggles and challenges like discrimination, crowdedness, floods, fire, hurricane and diseases. The list goes on and on,” Diwas says. In 2008, the Timsinas first arrived in the United States, settling in Atlanta, Georgia, where they stayed for three years before moving to Pittsburgh. Timsina has since founded a nonprofit organization, Children of Shangri-Lost.

On May 22, Timsina will be a featured speaker at TEDx Pittsburgh. He is going to share the story of his journey from Bhutan to the refugee camps in Nepal and to the United States.

 
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Church Plans Election Day Bake Sale, Soup Drive

April 18, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Christy Park United Methodist Church will sell homemade soup and baked goods on Election Day (April 26), a spokesperson said.

The sale will run all day while the polls are open and will include multiple different kinds of soup at $3 per bowl or $6 per quart. Baked goods also will be sold.

Items may be eaten at the church or taken "to go." The church is at 436 29th St. in Christy Park.

 

Police Log: April 14, 2016

April 14, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

  • Arrest records published here were provided by the McKeesport Police Department.
  • A report of an arrest does not mean the person identified has been convicted of a crime.
  • All people arrested are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
 
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Council OK's Raffles, Other Games at Palisades

April 14, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: News

The Palisades Ballroom has received formal permission from city council to host small games of chance such as raffles.

At its April 6 meeting, McKeesport council by 7-0 vote recognized the McKees Point Palisades Performing Arts Corporation as a civic or service association under the state's Local Option Small Games of Chance Act.

Council's approval clears the way for the Palisades to host raffles and other small games of chance to help fund its operations.

In other business:

  • Council by 7-0 vote approved a two-year contract with employees of the public works department, and another with the city's clerical employees. Both groups of employees are represented by Teamsters Local Union 205. The contracts run through Dec. 31, 2017.
 
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Barbecue April 22 to Benefit Mon River Fleet

April 13, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

The Mon River Fleet Lions Club will hold a barbecue from 11 a.m. "until the food sells out" on April 22 at Renziehausen Park Pavilion No. 5, between Grandview and Lake Emilie.

Members will be cooking up leg of lamb and baby-back ribs and offering a wide variety of side dishes, including potato salad, macaroni salad, pasta salad, cole slaw, baked beans and collard greens.

Pre-paid orders are suggested and are being accepted until this Friday (April 15) at (412) 664-2590. Free delivery is available for pre-paid orders of five or more.

There will also be a bake sale at the pavilion, including cookies, cakes and other items.

For more information, call (412) 664-2590 or download the order form. (PDF reader required)

 

Festival Slated for April 23 at Carrie Furnaces

April 11, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Art and music will take center stage on April 23 at a festival to benefit Homestead's Rivers of Steel Heritage Corporation.

The Steel to Sustainable Festival will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. April 23 at the Carrie Furnaces historic site near the end of the Rankin Bridge and will include musical performances by Red Room Effect, Colonel Eagleburger's Highstepping Goodtime Band, Daily Grind and more.

The festival is designed to take place to coincide with the same weekend as Earth Day, which is April 22.

The event also will feature a Hard Hat Art Show featuring local Pittsburgh artists in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the hard hat.

 
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