Quilt Preview Planned Ahead Of PA Relief Sale

EPHRATA – Over 3,000 volunteer quilters have been working on the 100+ quilts displayed at this year’s quilt preview held March 2-4 at Mennonite Central Committee’s Material Resources Center at 517 W. Trout Run Road in Ephrata. The preview is an opportunity to view the quilts slated for auction at the 61st annual Pennsylvania Relief Sale. Quilt viewers are invited to vote for their favorite quilt by donating money. Each cent counts as one vote and goes toward the Relief Sale’s My Coins Count collection. The collection supports MCC’s efforts to help communities improve their access to water by drilling wells, installing pumps, capturing rainwater, and constructing sand dams. Tours of the Material Resources Center warehouse will be also offered. Quilt preview hours are March 2 and 3 from 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. and March 4 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. The 61st annual Pennsylvania Relief Sale will be held March 31 – April 1, at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg. The event benefits MCC’s global relief, development, and peacebuilding work. Last year’s sale raised $450,000 for MCC.

More Help Offered For Opioid Addiction

HARRISBURG – Patients suffering from opioid addiction would have a broader range of treatment options under legislation introduced by Washington County Sen. Camera Bartolotta. Senate Bill 428 would mandate a comprehensive, patient-centered focus on the treatment of opioid addiction. The legislation would require treatment centers to follow best practices and offer a wider variety of services to meet the unique needs of each patient. It mandates training and experience requirements for prescribers of all FDA-approved medications for the treatment of opioid dependence, as well as the development of an abuse and diversion plan and best practice guidelines for treatment by providers. The bill also requires initial and periodic behavioral health assessments for each patient and requires providers to obtain informed consent from a patient regarding all available treatment options.

SEN. CAMERA BARTOLOTTA

Cyber Harassment Charges Filed

WEST EARL TOWNSHIP – A 17-year-old boy from Narvon was referred to Lancaster County Juvenile Probation following an incident which occurred at the Brownstown Career & Technology Center on January 26. The boy allegedly filmed another student during a class function and sent it out to other students via a social media platform. Due to privacy issues, the nature of the activity cannot be released, but the activity violated the restrictions listed in the Pennsylvania Cyber Harassment law. The incident did not involve any threats of violence or physical harm.

Life Sentence In York County Homicide

YORK (AP) – A York County man was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole in the murder of an ex-girlfriend whose body was discovered inside a shed at his home. 23-year-old Marcus Bordelon of Wrightsville was sentenced in York County after pleading guilty to first-degree murder, conspiracy, and other charges in the April 2015 death of 21-year-old Samantha Young. Prosecutors dropped plans to seek the death penalty in exchange for the plea. Police said Bordelon plotted the killing for months via text messages with his girlfriend, who court documents indicate is scheduled to enter a plea next Tuesday.

Fatal Crash Investigation In Conowingo

CONOWINGO, MD – Maryland State Police say a driver was killed when their car crossed the center line and crashed head-on into a tractor trailer in Cecil County. The crash occurred about 9 a.m. Wednesday on Route 1 at Horseshoe Road in Conowingo. Troopers say a Honda Civic crossed the center line and crashed into a Peterbilt tractor trailer. The driver of the Civic was pronounced dead at Christiana Hospital. The name of the victim was not released. The tractor trailer driver was not hurt. Troopers say they found suspected methamphetamine in the Civic. The crash is under investigation.

Lancaster County Indecent Incidents Investigated

LANCASTER COUNTY – Authorities in Lancaster County are investigating a series of indecent exposure incidents. The latest occurred around 3:15 p.m. Tuesday to young Amish children walking home from the Forest Hill Amish School. A man approached the children on W. Center Square Road. The suspect is described as a middle aged white male with a gray or light colored beard, wearing all black clothing and a hooded jacket pulled tight around his face. The suspect was riding a red with gray trim mountain style bicycle with a black bag on a cargo rack behind the seat. The incident is similar to several others that have occurred in Upper Leacock and West Earl Townships over the past year. Anyone with information is asked to contact East Lampeter Township Police at 717-291-4676.

Manheim Township Student Charged With Making Threats

MANHEIM TOWNSHIP – Charges have been filed against a Manheim Township student who threatened another student on SnapChat. The Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office says the safety of other students is being monitored and addressed by the school district and police department. They are confident those agencies have taken proper steps all along and will continue to do so even if they too are restricted in their ability to release details. Manheim Township School District has been extremely cooperative with law-enforcement since the beginning of the investigation. The district, as well, is limited in what it can publicly release. Officials say it should be noted, no other students had physical interaction with the student since the report to police. At this point in the investigation, they are not permitted to provide the name or even age of the juvenile.

School Board Member Sues Paper Over Secret Meeting Recording

HARRISBURG (AP) – A Lancaster County school board member is suing his local newspaper for reporting on the contents of a secret recording of a closed-door board meeting on the search for a new superintendent. Manheim Township School board member Bill Murry says the LNP newspaper, an editor, and two of its reporters violated state wiretapping laws by reporting on the recording, defamed him, and also invaded his privacy. The Lancaster-based newspaper reported in 2016 that the audiotape showed board members making plans to have individual conversations about hiring a search firm, rather than meeting in a group, to avoid state open-meeting requirements. Murry says that conclusion by the newspaper was a “false narrative.” The newspaper says it doesn’t know who made the tape and that the company acted lawfully.

PA Attorney General Tallies Cost Of Predecessor’s Conviction

HARRISBURG (AP) – PA Attorney General Josh Shapiro estimates that legal bills stemming from his convicted predecessor’s actions cost about $3.6 million. Shapiro told a state Senate Appropriations Committee hearing that his staff had tallied the costs related to former Attorney General Kathleen Kane, who resigned last year after being convicted of leaking secret grand jury information and lying about it. She’s been sentenced to 10 to 23 months, but is free on bail while she appeals. Shapiro says the biggest cost was $1.8 million for a law firm’s review of the use of the office’s computers to swap pornographic images and similar material. The agency also spent $790,000 on civil settlements, $877,000 to fight employee lawsuits, and $191,000 on legal representation for the office’s employees at Kane’s trial.

KATHLEEN KANE
JOSH SHAPIRO

Bill Allows Involuntary Commitments For Alcohol & Drug Abuse

HARRISBURG – Legislation giving families the opportunity to seek involuntary commitments of loved ones for treatment for alcohol and drug abuse has been proposed. While current state law allows for involuntary commitment of those diagnosed with a mental illness, the current statute does not consider substance abuse disorder as a mental disorder. Senate Bill 391 amends the Mental Health Procedures Act and will provide authority for a spouse, relative or guardian to petition for the involuntary commitment of an individual for treatment purposes. Under the measure, families could petition their county administrator to determine whether an individual suffers from addiction and is a threat to themselves or others. If such a determination is made, the individual would appear at a healthcare facility for a hearing conducted by a mental health review officer, ensuring the patient is notified of rights and examined by a physician. The attending physician would then determine the length of stay necessary based on medical expert opinions, rather than a pre-determined time period under the current statute. Several states in the grip of the opioid epidemic have also moved similar legislation including Indiana and Ohio.

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