Residents Voice Objections to County's Bus Rapid Transit Plan

October 16, 2017 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Duquesne News, News

Above: Port Authority senior analyst Amy Silbermann and Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald greet an audience Monday night at the Palisades ballroom in McKeesport. (Tube City Almanac photo)


Port Authority officials and Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald came to McKeesport on Monday night to explain a "bus rapid transit" system that they said would relieve overcrowding and late buses between downtown Pittsburgh and Oakland.

But what residents heard was that McKeesport, Duquesne and Homestead could soon be getting 45 percent less service from the heavily traveled 61C route --- and they don't like it.

At times, the atmosphere in the Palisades ballroom was tense, with arguments breaking out at one table between residents and Port Authority board members, and Fitzgerald exchanging sharp remarks with transit advocates in the audience.

"I chose to live in McKeesport because I saw that the bus service would be beneficial to me," said Dan Beyerlein, who said the 61C is his lifeline to doctors in Squirrel Hill and Oakland, and provides a connection to his church in Wilkinsburg.

Eliminating 45 percent of the 61C's daily runs to McKeesport, Beyerlein said, would make him unable to get his connecting buses. "Then I'm late to my doctor's appointments and there's nothing I can do about it," he said.

 
Read More

Volunteers, Students Break Ground on Grandview Greenspace

October 16, 2017 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News

Vickie Babyak photo special to Tube City Almanac

(Photos by Vickie Babyak, special to Tube City Almanac)


Volunteers and students from McKeesport's Youth CAST along with staff from GTECH Strategies broke ground Saturday morning for improvements to a greenspace at the corner of Grandview Avenue and Auburn Street.

GTECH, a Pittsburgh-based non-profit, has been working in the city since 2015 to reclaim and re-use vacant lots for community purposes, while Youth CAST, which stands for Communities and Schools Together, is a McKeesport-based leadership development program for young adults in grades 6 through 12.

Last year, in cooperation with students and several other local organizations, GTECH and Youth CAST developed a playground and greenspace --- called a "Green Playce" --- at the corner of Jenny Lind and Butler streets.

Above are Youth CAST members, seated, Ajayla Johnson, Calise Johnson, Paul Francis and Isaiah Johnson, and standing, Nyiana Watson, Youth CAST program coordinator Aaron Johnson, Deja Newby, Skylar Palmer, Nicora Watson, Zekeil Palmer, Denaja Newby, Sontee Peterson, Dajere Newby and Savanah Still.

More photos below the jump.

 
Read More
| News

Attorney, Newspaper Co-Owner Pleads Guilty in Fraud Case

October 16, 2017 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Police News

A suspended attorney pleaded guilty on Monday to charges he embezzled funds from one of his clients, then used the money to support the Mon Valley Independent newspaper.

Keith A. Bassi, 61, of Jefferson Twp., Fayette County, will be sentenced on three counts of mail fraud March 14 by U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab, said a spokeswoman for Acting U.S. Attorney Soo C. Song. Bassi faces up to 60 years in prison, a fine of $750,000, or both.

Bassi's license to practice law has been suspended, the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania announced on Aug. 16.

Prosecutors said that Bassi had power of attorney over the estate of an elderly client suffering from dementia. They accuse him of engaging in "a series of financial transactions" in which he diverted the estate's assets into his own accounts at CFS Bank and PNC Bank.

 
Read More

One Dead in Jenny Lind Shooting; City Man Charged With Homicide

October 14, 2017 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Police News

Updated Oct. 15 with victim's name and arrest details.

Updated Oct. 16 with bond and arraignment information.

Above: Damien L. Ashley. (Photo courtesy Allegheny County Police.)


A shooting Saturday afternoon in the 1600 block of Jenny Lind Street has left one man dead and another man hospitalized and facing charges.

Allegheny County police said the shooting stemmed from an argument between the two victims. McKeesport police were dispatched to the area at 1:20 p.m. and found two people suffering from gunshot wounds.

One victim was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. He was identified by the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office as Wyatt L. Gaza, 28, of Pittsburgh.

Minutes later, McKeesport police were called to UPMC McKeesport hospital where a man was reportedly being treated for gunshot wounds. County police said that man has been identified as Damien L. Ashley, 28, of McKeesport.

In a prepared release Sunday afternoon, Allegheny County detectives alleged that Ashley and Gaza were arguing and that they believe Ashley began shooting at Gaza, who returned fire. Police allege that Ashley fled after being shot and said he was driven to the hospital in a private vehicle.

Ashley was later flown to a Pittsburgh hospital's trauma center for treatment, police said.

According to court records, Ashley has been charged with homicide, unauthorized possession of a firearm, carrying a firearm without a license and tampering with evidence.

He was arraigned Monday and is currently being held without bond in the Allegheny County Jail pending a preliminary hearing at 11 a.m. Oct. 27 before Allegheny County Judge Jeffrey Manning.

 
Read More

Library Homeowners Urged to Apply for Rehab Grants

October 13, 2017 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Cornell Street is part of the city's Library and Cultural District. (Tube City Almanac file photo.)


If you live in the city's Library and Cultural District and own your home, Joe Costa at ACTION-Housing wants to hear from you as soon as possible.

Costa, a housing associate with the non-profit agency, is putting together a grant request to the state's housing trust fund and is seeking homeowners whose houses need remodeling or rehabilitation work.

"We have one candidate signed up already," he said. "We need 10 candidates altogether. These could be safety upgrades, structural repairs, roof, wiring, plumbing repairs --- anything needed to keep a house up to code."

People who are interested should call Costa at (412) 281-2102, extension 2053, or email jcosta@actionhousing.org.

Interested residents who want to learn more about the program are being urged to attend a meeting at 7 p.m. Oct 17 at McKeesport Presbyterian Church, corner of Versailles and Union avenues.

 
Read More
| News

New Police Officer Joins Duquesne Force

October 13, 2017 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Duquesne News

Duquesne has added a new police officer.

During Wednesday's city council meeting, Mayor Phillip Krivacek reported that Thomas Cranmer was hired Sept. 15 at the recommendation of police Chief Richard Adams.

“Our great department now has 12 officers, which is the highest we have had in some time,” Krivacek said.

In other business:

  • Councilwoman June Wilson announced that water rates will be increasing 1.8 percent next year. The rate increase was imposed by the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County, which supplies Duquesne's water.

  • Councilman Timothy Caldwell announced that the city has acquired a house at 32 S. Sixth St. in lieu of back taxes following a 10-year court case.

    He recommended council survey the property and obtain quotes for demolishing it.
 
Read More

Four Honored for Living City's Message of Respect, Hope, Love, Dignity

October 12, 2017 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

From left: Tony Riggs, Ty-Meer Brown and Brian Evans were honored this month for living the "McKeesport Message" of "Respect, Dignity, Hope and Love." (Tube City Almanac photo.)


Four people were honored this month by McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko and the McKeesport Message Committee for upholding the values of respect, dignity, hope and love.

A subgroup of the mayor's Select Committee on Crime and Violence, the committee accepts nominations from the public and makes the selections four times per year.

Citations were presented at the Oct. 4 council meeting to Brian Evans, Tony Riggs and Ty-Meer Brown. Another citation was issued to Linda Brewster, who was unable to be present.

 
Read More

Croatian Club Slates Halloween Party Oct. 21

October 12, 2017 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Yukon Croatian Club will kick off the Halloween season with its over-21 Halloween Party on Oct. 21 with a DJ from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.

The festivities also include a prize for best costume and a door prize ticket, a spokeswoman said. Admission is $1. The club will open at 7 p.m. It is located at 109 Union St. in Yukon, exit 53 on I-70.

For more information, call (724) 722-4100.

 

Penn State Students Raise Money for Mental Illness Education, Support

October 11, 2017 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Students of the Psychological Association of Greater Allegheny campus in McKeesport are raising money for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, now through the end of October. Penn State photo by Martin Rosenberg.)

When Penn State undergrad Livia Bodner set up a page to raise money for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, she put the goal at $100.

"I thought that was a stretch, but then I saw it hit $200, then almost $300," said Bodner, who's majoring in psychology at the university's Greater Allegheny campus in McKeesport. "We just want it to keep going."

Bodner serves as vice president of the campus' Psychological Association, or "Psych Club." This is the fourth five-kilometer NAMIWalk organized by McKeesport campus students.

Now through the end of October, donations toward the fundraiser can still be made via the NAMIWalks website.

 
Read More

Heritage Center Getting Ready for 3rd Annual Cemetery Tour

October 11, 2017 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Above: An actor portrays pioneering woman airline pilot and McKeesport native Helen Richey during the 2015 cemetery tour. Photo courtesy McKeesport Regional History & Heritage Center.)
 


From a Civil War hero to the victim of a tragic train accident, talented local actors will bring to life nine interesting McKeesport residents of the past during the third-annual Living History Tour of McKeesport & Versailles Cemetery.

The self-guided tour will be held from 12 to 4 p.m. Oct. 28 and 29, said Robyn Tedesco, executive director of the McKeesport Regional History & Heritage Center.

The tour features some of the area's most intriguing, famous and infamous figures, she said, and also will feature a stop highlighting the interesting history of the cemetery as well as a food-truck round-up offering refreshments for visitors.

 
Read More

Google™ Custom Search
McKeesport booked.net
+69°F

High: +69°

Low: +59°