BACKYARD BROADCASTING LOCAL NEWS JULY 16, 2020

RESTRICTIONS ARE COMING BACK AFTER UNSETTLING COVID-19 NUMBERS
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf has announced new statewide restrictions on bars and restaurants and larger indoor gatherings. Wolf said Wednesday that the new orders for targeted mitigation efforts are in response to an “unsettling” climb in new COVID-19 cases.  The DOH  projecting that a new surge could soon eclipse what we saw in April peak. The new orders include reducing restaurants’ indoor dining capacity to 25%, limiting on-premises alcohol consumption to meals only, limiting indoor gatherings to 25 people and implementing telework whenever possible.  The restrictions take effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday. Read the entire mandate from Governor Tom Wolf, here

ADA SUIT FILED AGAINST WILLIAMSPORT
The Center for Independent Living and ADAPT, two regional advocacy organizations for differently-abled people, filed a lawsuit Wednesday in federal court against Williamsport for allegedly failing to provide disabled access to City Hall.  According to the Sun Gazette, The plaintiffs, who include residents from Williamsport, Lock Haven and Jersey Shore allege that the city intentionally discriminated against over 3 thousand disabled residents by not providing access to the inside of City Hall with the long-promised access ramp and other accessibility needs such as flashing fire alarms for deaf individuals. According to PennLive, the U.S. attorney’s office launched an investigation earlier this year into allegations Williamsport’s City Hall and other municipal facilities are not in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

CLINTON COUNTY COMMISSIONERS UNDER SCRUTINY
The Clinton County Commissioners are facing scrutiny after personnel changes in the Department of Emergency Services there prompted a local resident to question the qualifications and actions of local leaders within the department.  Kevin Ferrara, former fire fighter, Air Force veteran and emergency services consultant says there are recent questions about the use of Personal Protective Equipment such as N95 Masks used for First responders and emergency personnel, he says about 500 of which were instead distributed to county employees by Clinton County Commissioner Angela Harding. Commissioner Jeff Snyder says the number of masks Harding secured for employees was not that exorbitant  and that she did not have access to 500 masks.  According to clintoncountypa.com, Clinton County commissioners meet every Thursday at 10:00 am and commissioner work sessions are held every Monday morning. All meetings are open to the public.

LITTLE LEAGUE TEAM SHUT DOWN BY CORONAVIRUS DIAGNOSIS
A T-ball player in the Montoursville Little League tested positive for COVID-19 and the team is now shut down to keep the virus from spreading.  According to North Central PA cot com, the leagues’ leaders notified parents that a 5 or 6 year old was affected by the virus and that his family had not let him participate in any activities after he became sick – but he is now fever-free  An older brother in the coach-pitch league is being held out of action in an abundance of caution, but no one else in the boy’s family had any COVID-19 symptoms.  League president Scott Metzger said the Montoursville team can resume play on July 23rd if no issues arise.

MORE LYCOMING RECYCLING FACILITIES TO CLOSE
Five more recycling sites in Lycoming County will be discontinued due to the cost of transportation to remote areas to collect low volumes of materials.  According to a press release by Lycoming County resource management, Franklin Township, Montgomery Borough, Nippenose Township, Pine Township and Plunketts Creek Township are slated to close down, joining Lewis Township and Porter Township already on the list of facilities to shut down in 2020.  LCRMS says there was a decrease in available state grants and the market value of materials is low which no longer helps offset the costs.  Get details about the sites at lcrms.com.  Hepburn Township, Cogan House Township, Watson Township, Limestone Township and Brady Township are still slated to reopen their facilities.

WILLIAMSPORT AD HOC COMMITTEE RESEARCHING UPGRADE COSTS FOR CITY HALL
Williamsport’s City Hall building Ad Hoc Committee has come up with an estimate to fully repair City Hall, saying 4.99 million dollars will be needed to upgrade HVAC, and elevator and roof replacement, plus bathroom upgrades and an accessibility wheelchair ramp.  According to the Sun Gazette, the 2017 report compilation from an architecture and construction management firm comes prior to decisions being made about costs of repairs vs. a move to a new building which could house police fire and emergency personell.  A meeting in August between UPMC Susquehanna, Williamsport City Police and the county to discuss a public safety facility location is pending.

LOCAL LEADERS SUPPORT LIMITING THE LENGTH OF DISASTER DECLARATION
A proposed constitutional amendment has support from State Sen. Gene Yaw Rep. Garth Everett and Rep. Jeff Wheeland that limits the length of future emergency disaster declarations made by the governor, unless an extension is approved by the General Assembly. Under current law, a governor’s emergency declaration can last up to 90 days and be renewed by the governor indefinitely. Under Senate Bill 1166, the emergency declaration would be limited to 21 days unless the General Assembly approved a longer duration. Senate vote followed Tuesday’s approval by the House of Representatives.  As a constitutional amendment, the legislation must be approved again in the next legislative session before being put on the ballot for voters to decide.

PENNSYLVANIA COMPANY BUYS GANDER OUTDOORS BUILDING
The former Gander Outdoors at the Lycoming Mall Complex has a new owner and they are hiring.  According to NorthCentral PA dot com, Williamsport based Miele Manufacturing, who handle Pennsylvania skill games, recently purchased the outparcel building at 66 Mall Parkway in Muncy Creek Township and plan to mive in officially soon.  The over 56 thousand square foot building was vacated in December of 2019 after Gander Outdoors had a brief liquidation sale.

LOCAL COLLEGE RECOGNIZED BY ARBOR DAY FOUNDATION
Penn College has been recognized by the  Arbor Day Foundation for the 5th consecutive year as Tree Campus USa for its commitment to urban forestry.  Penn College — honored annually since 2015 — met Tree Campus USA’s five standards inlcluding having a tree advisory committee,  a campus tree-care plan in place, dedicating annual expenditures for the program, holding an Arbor Day observance and with a student service-learning project,  The Arbor Day foundation’s Time for Trees initiative is an effort to plant 100 million trees in forests and communities by 2022.

SPORTS
NASCAR
Chase Elliot joined his father Bill Elliott as winner of NASCAR‘s annual All-Star race earning $1 million in front of limited spectators at Bristol motor Speedway.  Elliot beat Kyle Busch to the finish line –  Bubba Wallace wrecked out of the qualifier

NFL

A Bidet company who made a lot of money during the COVID-19 pandemic announced a bid yesterday for the naming rights to the Buffalo Bills stadium. A$12.5 million deal could rename the venue TUSHY stadium, and would likely bring a college football bowl game to Orchard Park called the Toilet Bowl. It’s unclear whether TUSHY’s offer will be taken seriously.

The Dallas Cowboys and pro bowl quarterback Dak Prescott were unable to reach an agreement on a long-term deal yesterday, so Prescott will play the upcoming season on a franchise tag worth 31.4 million.The team and Prescott are now not allowed to negotiate until after the upcoming season is over.

In the NFL, about half of the adults in the US support Washington DC NFL team to retire the Redskins name according to a poll of 6000 people. It states that 53% of America strongly or somewhat support the team’s decision to change its name.

NBA Players are using a snitch hotline to report other players who are violating COVID-19 protocols at the NBA bubble in Orlando.  Sources say the NBA has set up an anonymous hotline to report social distancing violations at Walt Disney World resort.  Players have received warnings from violations that have come through the snitch hotline as the league ensures social distancing and mask protocols on the campus.

 

The Clinton County Commissioners are facing scrutiny after personnel changes in the Department of Emergency Services there prompted a local resident to question the qualifications and actions of local leaders within the department.  Kevin Ferrara, former fire fighter, Air Force veteran and emergency services consultant says a recent job posting to replace the Emergency Management Coordinator, who recently retired within upheaval in the department which Ferrara says is due to a hostile work environment under Clinton County Commissioner Angela Harding.    Commissioner Miles Kessinger says Harding cares about Clinton County and the changes being made are for the better.  Details about the requirements for the current job availability in Clinton County is available at clintoncountypa.com

 

The Clinton County Commissioners are facing scrutiny after personnel changes in the Department of Emergency Services there prompted a local resident to question the qualifications and actions of local leaders within the department.  Kevin Ferrara, former fire fighter, Air Force veteran and emergency services consultant says a recent job posting to replace the Emergency Management Coordinator, who recently retired in what Ferrara says was a hostile work environment under  Clinton County Commissioner Anglea Harding, states the directives listed for the hire does not follow Title 35/PEMA directives.  Ferrar says Andrew Kremser, the current Director of the Department of Emergency Services was not properly credentialed for the position.  Clinton County Commissioner Miles Kessinger says Kremser is currently obtaining the qualifications he needs.  Details about the requirements for the current Emergency Management Coordinator position in Clinton County is available at clintoncountypa.com.

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