PA Task Force One Returns After Deployment For Hurricane Response

HARRISBURG – Members of PA Task Force One, Urban Search and Rescue Task Force returned to their home station in Philadelphia after several weeks on federal deployment to assist first responders after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas and Hurricane Irma hit Florida. Five members remain deployed as part of a federal Incident Support Team currently stationed in San Juan, Puerto Rico to provide support to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands after Hurricane Maria. Their mission is to coordinate operations of federal resources currently on the ground there. The team has the capability to conduct water rescues and consists of highly trained personnel in search and rescue such as heavy rigging and structural specialists, hazardous materials, specialized communications, medical personnel, and canine handlers, as well as staff who will aid the team with ground support once they arrive on site. It is not known how long deployed members will remain in Puerto Rico.

Vandals Hit Dauphin County Church

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP – Dauphin County authorities are investigating vandalism to a church. Yesterday morning, officers responded to the 6000 block of Jonestown Road and found four similar spray painted markings or “tags” in various places on the south side of the building. Police were advised the vandalism took place between August 18-29. Anyone with information is asked to contact Lower Paxton Township Police at 717-657-5656.

Worker Killed At Cumberland County Amazon Warehouse

BOILING SPRINGS (AP) – The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the death of a worker at an Amazon warehouse in South Middleton Township, Cumberland County. Coroner Charles Hall says 28-year-old Devan Shoemaker of Millerstown was killed when he was run over by a truck at the facility about 5:15 p.m. Tuesday. Shoemaker helping a truck driver hook up a trailer to his rig when he was accidentally run over. OSHA spokeswoman Joanna Hawkins says the agency has six months to complete its investigation. Another worker was killed at the same warehouse in 2014 after being pinned between a pallet truck and a storage rack.

Juveniles Arrested After Rocks Thrown From Overpass

HAMBURG (AP) – State Police say three juveniles were arrested in connection with rocks thrown from an overpass above Interstate 78 in Berks County that damaged several vehicles. The three have been charged with propulsion of missiles, simple assault, reckless endangerment, and criminal mischief. Authorities said one of the rocks thrown from an overpass in Upper Tulpehocken Township early Sunday was big enough to damage the undercarriage of one car.

PA Senate Votes To Non-Concur With House Revenue Plan

HARRISBURG – The PA Senate voted 43-7 to non-concur with a House passed revenue bill. A conference committee will now be appointed to iron out a final fiscal code component. Lancaster County Sen. Ryan Aument voted to non-concur and said the way they approach developing a budget must change. He said we can not continue to increase state spending and support bigger government with a one-time use of funds as revenue. He supports the House view that their should not be new taxes and enact pro growth economic policies that will generate revenue through enhanced economic activity. Aument added that he feared that continuing down a path of short term solutions will only serve as a barrier to economic opportunity in Pennsylvania. A conference committee made up of members representing the General Assembly’s four caucuses is created when the state House and Senate are deadlocked on developing language for a bill. Once a compromise is reached, the committee will submit a report to the two chambers for an up or down vote.


PA Credit Downgrade From Standard & Poors

HARRISBURG (AP) – The Keystone State’s credit rating is taking a hit as credit rating agency Standard and Poor’s lowered its rating on Pennsylvania’s debt. That’s the second downgrade in three years as budget makers have struggled to pull the state out of a deficit. Pennsylvania is now rated even lower among states, sliding to the bottom five rated by Standard and Poor’s. The downgrade means Pennsylvania will pay more to borrow money, potentially tens of millions of dollars a year. The PA House and Senate are divided over whether to raise taxes as lawmakers look to borrow $1 billion or more to help bail the state out of a $2.2 billion projected deficit.

Measure Stops Welfare Payments To Dead People

HARRISBURG – At a time when Pennsylvania has a $2 billion plus budget deficit, state taxpayer money shouldn’t be wasted. That’s the sentiment behind a bill introduced by Montgomery County Rep. Michael Corr. House Bill 1614 was generated in response to a report released last year by the Auditor General that the state Department of Human Services (DHS) provided nearly $700,000 in welfare benefits to at least 2,300 individuals who had been dead for 60 days. Corr said his bill would require DHS to increase the frequency of death records checks to ensure scarce state benefit dollars are more effectively utilized. The bill is currently before the state House Health Committee for consideration.


Down Syndrome Doesn’t Keep Chloe Down

HARRISBURG – PA high school student Chloe Kondrich demonstrates quite clearly how Down Syndrome lives matter. In her short life, she has served as an ambassador for those with special needs, helping public officials recognize the gifts and talents that people with Down Syndrome have to offer. Chloe was among those gathered at the state Capitol Tuesday for a news conference promoting a resolution that recognizes the inherent value and dignity of children with an extra chromosome. Senate Resolution 174, sponsored by Lancaster County Sen. Scott Martin, condemns the abortion of babies diagnosed with Down Syndrome. Maria Gallagher, Education Director with the PA Pro Life Federation, says such abortions must end. She added that the lives of Down Syndrome children matter a great deal to families, schools, communities, and companies across the Commonwealth and it’s time for the discrimination against these valuable individuals to end.


Man Convicted In Assault Of 6 Girls Gets 30 To 87 Years

DOYLESTOWN (AP) – A man convicted of sexually assaulting six girls from the same family, fathering two children with one of them, has been sentenced to 30 to 87 years in jail. Authorities say the girls’ Lancaster County parents had “gifted” their oldest daughter to 52-year-old Lee Kaplan because he helped them financially when they broke with their Amish faith. Kaplan was sentenced in Bucks County Court on multiple counts. The parents were convicted in July of child endangerment. Prosecutors say the victims considered themselves to be Kaplan’s wives.


Missing Teenage Girl Being Sought

WEST CHESTER – Chester County authorities are searching for a missing 15-year-old girl, who was last seen this morning at Henderson High School in West Chester. Victoria Grimaldi has a history of mental health issues and does not have her medication. She was last seen wearing black leggings and a gray zip up style sweat shirt with a sparkly wing design on the back. She is also in the possession of a Jansport back pack that is turquoise in color with a plaid design. Grimaldi is described as a white female, with brown hair, blue eyes, 5’5”, and 125 pounds. Her whereabouts are unknown at this time. It is possible that she has left the area and is using public transportation. Anyone with information is asked to contact West Whiteland Police Detective McCloskey at or 484-875-6023 or 610-842-1584.


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