BACKYARD BROADCASTING LOCAL NEWS JULY 3, 2020

Facemasks are once again required in county buildings.  According to the Lycoming County Board of Commissioners all members of the public that enter county government facilities will be required to wear masks in keeping with the Order of the Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Dr. Rachel Levine, who signed the order this week.  The Pennsylvania Department of Health yesterday, confirmed 832 additional positive cases of the virus, with a statewide total to 88,074. All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have cases of COVID-19.  In Lycoming County there are 193 positive cases to date, Clinton 80 cases, Sullivan six cases and Tioga 25 cases.

Water and sewer customers in Lycoming County who are having a hard time getting caught up with the water bill, have been given a break.  According to the Sun Gazette, the Lycoming County Water and Sewer Authority decided that failure to pay monthly charges will not result in shut-off of service.  Penalties will be waived again for the third month in a row.  The Authority, who met for the first time in person this week since March, will revisit the policy in August .

The controversy over using the Red Raider Mascot which has recently been brought under fire in the Bellefonte Area School district, caused the school board meeting last Tuesday to be packed with the public, to make comments about the issue.  According to the Sun Gazette, board president, Jon Guizar recognized public comments for over 45 minutes during the meeting. Mostly those against the mascot were not current residents within the school district, some of whom cautioned the district not to get into a costly legal battle.  Most current residents were proud of the history of the Red Raider mascot which first appeared in a Bellefonte publication in 1936.  The mascot issue was not on the board’s agenda, but was driven by recent online petitions of Facebook groups.

The world’s largest flying American flag will be hoisted and draped between two Allison Cranes tomorrow from 9am til 9pm at the former Susquehanna Supply Company site, just west of Baird Communication off Maynard street in Williamsport, all due to the hard work Allison Crane and Rigging, the Williamsport Lycoming Chamber of Commerce and the Pennslyvania National Guard of Lycoming county. The set the night to music fireworks celebration sponsored by backyard Broadcasting will take place at the Lycoming County Fairgrounds in Hughesville and the public coming to park at near facility is asked to use 180 to Route 405 N due to construction at the 405 intersection.

Even with the order from the Pennsylvania Department of Health, requiring social distancing and masks be worn at all times when community members are using public transportation, River Valley Transit has announced that with the short notice thay are unable to require their staff enforce the state mandate.  According to the Sun Gazette, Interim General Manager Adam Winder said a passenger waiting in the heat will not be denied entry on the bus even if they do not have a face covering.  He said they are working to develop a plan moving forward.  Scrubbing down and disinfecting of the busses is part of the employee’s daily routine since the outbreak occurred.

The Montgomery borough Council voted last Monday to terminate Officer Eric Winters in a 5-0 vote, with Laurel Green and Susan Andrews abstaining from the vote. According to the Sun Gazette, after an internal investigation and a review of the results, the council made the decision to terminate officer Winters.  He had been promoted to corporal in October 2019 and helped lead a police regionalization which ultimately stalled.  The investigation results are a personnel matter and will not  be made public.

An Athens Area High School freshman has won a scholarship for her entry in the “No Excuses Billboard Design Contest”.  According to PennDOT,  Karlee Bartlow’s billboard design, “Stay Alert, Don’t Get Hurt” featuring a distracted driver, provided a $500 scholarship for her efforts and an additional $500 for her school. The Highway Safety Network (HSN), Athens Area High School and State Farm Insurance sponsored the contest and her work will be displayed on a billboard in Bradford County during National Teen Driver Safety Week in October. According to PennDOT data, in 2018, there were 6,453 crashes involving 16- or 17-year-old drivers resulting in 26 fatalities

Jersey Shore’s Town Meeting, a week long celebration during the 4th of July for the community and the surrounding communities will now go on July 20th through July 25th.  According to event organizers they waited until the county was in the green phase and to have approval from the borough council.  There will be some changes this year – no “Baby Sweetheart” contest or Tiadaghton Queen contest, however, last year’s Tiadaghton Queen runner-up, Courtney Lehman, Jersey Shore student, will be crowned. The Thursday night parade and the Saturday fireworks show will go on as planned. The route for the parade will go down Locust Street, across Broad Street, then up Thompson Street to finish at the Celebration Field.  Lee Springman, Jersey Shore student, will be this year’s Town Crier.

SPORTS
NFL
FedEx, which has naming rights to the stadium in which the Washington Redskins play, made a request yesterday that the team change its nickname. FedEx, Nike and PepsiCo each received letters signed by 87 investment firms and shareholders worth a combined $620 billion asking the companies to sever ties with the team unless it changes its controversial name. FedEx paid $205 million to the Redskins for naming rights to the stadium in 1998 in a deal that runs through 2025.

What’s traditionally known as the Black national anthem called “Lift Ev’ry Voice And Sing,” is expected to be performed live or played before every Week 1 NFL game, as well as the league considering other measures to recognize victims of police brutality in the upcoming season.  The song would be performed before “The Star-Spangled Banner,” The NFL’s season opener is scheduled for Sept. 10, with the Kansas City Chiefs hosting the Houston Texans.

NBA
As a precaution, the LA Clippers shut down the team’s practice facility on Thursday after getting a positive coronavirus test within the traveling party headed to Orlando, Florida, for the league restart.  The Clippers could reopen the facility for workouts prior to the team’s planned Wednesday departure for Florida.  The Denver Nuggets and Brooklyn Nets temporarily shut down their facilities last week for the same reason. Teams are allowed to send a 35-person group to the NBA’s campus at Walt Disney World Resort as part of the 22-team restart.

GOLF
The PGA of America is renaming its Horton Smith Award after a review of history revealed Smith defended the Caucasian-only membership clause when he served as PGA president in the early 1950s. The PGA of America board voted to rename it the PGA Professional Development Award honoring PGA members for outstanding contributions to professional education.  The Caucasian-only clause was part of the PGA bylaws from 1934 until it was rescinded in 1961. Smith was president of the PGA of America from 1952 to 1954.

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