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Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C
Is it all Greek
to you?
Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C
How is our area business landscape changing? BUSINESS, 8B
How is our area business
landscape changing?
BUSINESS, 8B
WILKES-BARRE, PA timesleader.com ThuRSdAy, SEPTEmBER 5, 2013 50¢
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timesleader.com
ThuRSdAy, SEPTEmBER 5, 2013
50¢

WYOMING AREA TEACHERS’ STRIKE

Review:Vets’raisesskewnumbers

Experienced teachers would see their salaries rise significantly more than their newer colleagues

MARK GUYDISH

mguydish@timesleader.com

EXETER — The two sides in the Wyoming Area School District teacher strike have said the differ- ences at the negotiating table are small, yet critical questions of pay. A Times Leader review of the potential impact from the latest offers shows that, dollar-wise, the differences would be small for most teachers individually, but are much

greater when comparing veteran teachers to relative newcomers. Assuming that raises were spread equally among all teachers — not a guarantee — newcomers with a bachelor’s degree would see annual increases ranging from 0.48 percent to 2.77 percent over the six-year offer by the school board. By com- parison, a teacher with eight years experience and a master’s degree would see increases ranging from 3.86 percent to 8.64 percent. But that high rate rises from a deferral of any retroactive raise in 2011-12, substantially increasing the raise teachers would get for

2012-13.

See TEACHERS | 12A

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is

Clark Van Orden | The Times Leader

Teachers from Wyoming Area School District walk the picket line outside Montgomary Avenue Elementary School on Tuesday, the first day of the ongoing strike.

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is

Pete G. Wilcox photos | The Times Leader

Zach McEntee, left, and Matt Giampietro, both 11 and both from Dallas, enjoy the Cliff Hanger ride on opening day of the Luzerne County Fair in Lehman Township on Wednesday.

Fairofferscountryflavor

Luzerne County event a slice of tradition

JON O’CONNELL

joconnell@timesleader.com

LEHMAN

TWP.

You

couldn’t have asked for a fairer

day.

The smell of funnel cake and simmering sausage drifted on a

cool breeze through the vendor aisles as food sellers braced for the masses soon to break through the gates.

Showing

up

Luzerne

County

early

Fair

to

has

the

its

perks. You might spot Jeremy

Evans of Bloomsburg, a fifth-

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is

See ‘Our

opinion’

on the

county

fair,

page 11A.

generation

fam-

ily business owner

who has run his fair-food truck on the side for 10

years,

spinning

up a warm batch

of

and

cotton candy

setting out

his hand-dipped candy apples in the quiet before the crowds start swelling. Evans’ stand, the one with the twirling cotton candy sign on top, is near the main entrance

See FAIR |12A

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is

Jeremy Rabe, 15, of Tunkhannock leads his Holstein cow named Deplore back to the barn after giving her a wash at the Luzerne County Fairgrounds on Wednesday. Rabe was there representing Traver’s Dairy in Tunkhannock.

Senate panel backs strike against Syria

Measure heads to the full Senate as Obama hints he may retaliate even without congressional OK

U.S. combat operations on the ground. The measure is expect- ed to reach the Senate floor next week, although the timing for a vote is uncertain. Sen. Rand Paul, a Kentucky conservative with strong tea party ties, has threatened a filibuster. The House also is reviewing Obama’s request, but its timetable is even less certain and the measure could face a rockier time there.

The adminis- tration blames Assad for a chemical weap- ons attack that took place on

Aug. 21 and says

DAVID ESPO and DONNA CASSATA

Associated Press

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s request for speedy con- gressional backing of a military strike in Syria advanced Wednesday toward a showdown Sen- ate vote, while the commander in chief left open

Obama

the possibility he would order retali- ation for a deadly chemi- cal weapons attack even if Congress withheld its approval. Legislation backing the use of force against President Bashar Assad’s government cleared the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on a 10-7 vote after it was stiffened at the last minute to include a pledge of support for “decisive changes to the present military balance of power” in Syria’s civil war. It also would rule out

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is

more than 1,400 civilians died, including at least 400 children. Other casu- alty estimates are lower, and the Syrian govern- ment denies responsibil- ity, contending rebels fighting to topple the gov- ernment were to blame. The Senate panel’s vote marked the first formal response in Congress, four days after Obama unexpectedly put off an anticipated cruise mis- sile strike against Syria last weekend and instead

See SYRIA |12A

Sherman Hills shooting suspects are locked up

Two men jailed for reasons unrelated to August incident in which girls, ages 5 and 2, were injured

EDWARD LEWIS

elewis@timesleader.com

PITTSTON — Two men who Luzerne County prosecutors believe were involved in the shooting

a preliminary hearing on charges that he attempted to prevent the capture of a fugitive in June. Alford, 24, of Pittston, is jailed for lack of $100,000 bail, which his attorney, Assistant Public Defender Joseph F. Saporito Jr., called “outrageous” after the hearing before District Judge Andrew Barilla in Pittston. A law enforcement source close to the inves-

of two girls at the Sherman Hills apartment com- plex last month are jailed at the Luzerne County Corr ectional Facility on unre- lated charges. While prosecu-

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is

Alford

tigation said Alford is “Flea,” a street name listed in search war- rants filed in last month’s shoot-

ing in Sherman

Hills of 5-year-old Janiya McFarlane and 2-year-

tors would not disclose the name of the suspected gunman, alleged accom- plice Jamal Alford was in court Wednesday for

old

Gabriella Morris.

McFarlane suffered a gun- shot wound to her neck

See SUSPECTS |12A

6 0 9 8 1 5 1 0 0 1 1
6
0 9 8 1 5
1 0 0 1 1

INSIDE

NEWS

Local 3A Nation & World 5A Obituaries 10A

Editorials 11A

Weather 12A

SPORTS: 1B

BUSINESS: 8B

LIFE: 1C

Birthdays 3C

Television 4C

movies 4C

Puzzles 5C

CLASSIFIED: 1D

Comics 10d

September 21- 28, 2013

Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is
Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is
Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is
Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is
Is it all Greek to you? Pros and cons of a fraternity LIFE, 1C How is
visit us online at bloomsburgfair.com
visit us online at bloomsburgfair.com

PAGE 2A Thursday, September 5, 2013

NEWS

www.timesleader.com THE TIMES LEADER

JudgevowsquickPa.same-sexmarriagecaseruling

   

Montgomery County official has been issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples

legal standing to pursue what’s known as a mandamus action

MARK SCOLFORO

eastern state that does not allow

The state Health Department,

weighing the constitutional-

to force a government official to follow the law. He also has

Associated Press

gay marriage or civil unions.

which is seeking a court order to

ity of the same-sex marriage

to decide if Hanes qualifies as

HARRISBURG — A judge promised to rule as quickly as possible after hearing arguments Wednesday about whether a sub- urban Philadelphia court clerk should be forced to stop issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini said a central issue is “how power is allocated in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania.” “What’s before us today is generally, ‘Who decides?’” Pellegrini told the full courtroom in Harrisburg at the start of oral arguments. Pennsylvania is the only north-

A 1996 state law says a mar- riage must be between a man and a woman, and it says same- sex marriages performed else- where cannot be recognized in Pennsylvania. D. Bruce Hanes, the elected register of wills in Montgomery County, defied the ban in late July by issuing licenses to same- sex couples, as part of his duties as the orphan’s court clerk. His action followed the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to throw out part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, and a statement by state Attorney General Kathleen Kane that the same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional.

stop Hanes, said it must ensure that marriage registrations are “uniformly and thoroughly enforced throughout the state.” It said his actions have interfered with the proper performance of its powers, duties and responsi- bilities. “He is issuing marriage licens- es that the law clearly does not allow,” said Greg Dunlap, repre- senting the Health Department. “The Department of Health has an interest in the integrity of the record keeping system.” By the close of business Tuesday, Hanes had issued 164 licenses. Pellegrini said he was not

ban. But questions about its constitutionality arose repeat- edly, and Pellegrini said he was concerned about the potential effect of his ruling on various levels of government. The lawyers discussed how a sheriff might decide it was unconstitutional to deny gun permits to felons, or a zon- ing officer might think set- back property line rules are an unconstitutional taking of pri- vate property. “There’s a lot of constitu- tional officers in this common- wealth,” Pellegrini said. The judge has to determine if the Health Department has

a judicial officer; if he does, the state Supreme Court may have exclusive jurisdiction. Pellegrini allowed a lawyer for some of the people who have received licenses to participate in the argument. Afterward, one couple said they were not sure what to make of the session. Kevin Taylor, of Havertown, who got a license from Hanes on the second day they were avail- able, said seeking to intervene in the Department of Health case may be just the start of his legal efforts. “We’ll probably continue to sign onto lawsuits until this is resolved,” Taylor said.

Who’sindriver’sseat? Noone?

 

Pa. congressman takes a ride in a computer-operated car

“It’s going to be great for our military to able to send vehicles into combat without people in them,” Shuster said.

“It’s going to be great for our military to able to send vehicles into combat without

AP photo

u.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, the chairman of the House Transportation and

KEVIN BEGOS

Barry Schoch, secretary of the

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency began

Associated Press

Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

holding competitions for driv- erless vehicles in 2004, and a

PITTSBURGH

A

Shuster saw a Carnegie Mellon

Carnegie Mellon team won the

Pennsylvania congressman caught a cutting-edge ride to the airport on Wednesday. U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, a Republican from Altoona, made a 33-mile trip from Cranberry Township to Pittsburgh

test vehicle about five years ago, and he said it was crammed so full of equipment that there wasn’t even room for a person inside. Now, the 2011 Cadillac is basi- cally a standard model with all the sensors and electronics discreetly

2007 race, along with a $2 million prize. Raj Rajkumar, the leader of the Carnegie Mellon project, said the biggest design challenge for driv- erless vehicles is managing unpre- dictable events.

International Airport at about 11 a.m. in a computer-operated car. The so-called driverless Cadillac SRX was designed by Carnegie Mellon University

hidden. It didn’t look out of place on the drive to the airport, which began in a suburban area with stop-and-go traffic and then reached speeds of about 65 mph

“It takes a long time to be taught all the things we know” about driving, Rajkumar said of the software. “You can build a

Infrastructure Committee, gets into a self-driven Cadillac SRX in Cranberry, Pa., on Wednesday.

researchers who have been work- ing on the project since 2008. The car uses inputs from radars, laser rangefinders, and infrared cam- eras to maneuver in traffic. Shuster is the chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and he was accompanied by

on a major highway. A Carnegie Mellon engineer was in the driv- er’s seat as a safety precaution. Shuster said he can now imag- ine a future where such vehicles enter the mainstream, potentially reducing accidents, fatalities and congestion on roads. But there’s also a military angle.

system that works correctly today — how do you know it’s going to work well tomorrow? Because it’s a new set of conditions, and you are unable to test all possible con- ditions. It’s an infinite number.” Rajkumar thinks some driv- erless cars may reach the mar- ketplace by 2020, though some experts say it will take longer.

GM, Nissan and Google are all working on projects, as are other universities. For now, engineers are still gathering data and running tests. A camera on the car recorded Shuster’s trip and streaming video is available online. Carnegie Mellon also let local

law enforcement know about the road tests, and one officer imag- ined a possible future where DUI’s no longer exist. “It’s very intriguing,” Lt. Kevin Meyer of the Cranberry Township Police Department said as he waited for Shuster to depart.

POLICE BLOTTER

 

BUTLER TWP. — An

Facility for lack of $10,000 bail.

at Tunkhannock captured Carl

District Judge Daniel O’Donnell

will be scheduled later this month,

of Laflin, on evidence of drunken

BUTLER TWP. — A White

Exit 3 of the North Cross Valley

Landolt was charged with two

ence of alcohol and one count

responded to a crash on East

from her residence during a bur-

Oklahoma man was killed in a

• It was reported Tuesday that

John McNeal, 35, who is wanted

in Sugarloaf Township. A hearing

glary.

one-car crash on Interstate 80

someone stole copper wiring and

by the Alabama Department of

• Police are investigating a

early Wednesday morning, state police in Hazleton said.

tubing from a vacant building on North Fulton Street.

Probation and Parole. McNeal was captured while

police said. PLAINS TWP. — Township

three-car crash that occurred at about 12:42 p.m. Tuesday and

Michael Ray Mitchell, 34, of

• Nolen Miles was cited with

state police investigated a domes-

police charged Eric Landolt, 46,

sent two drivers to the hospital for

• Lori Sabol, of Knox Street,

Tulsa, was headed east near mile marker 263 just before 6 a.m.when

harassment after he allegedly struck his girlfriend in the face,

tic dispute at a house on State Street on Friday. Police also

driving after he allegedly struck

treatment of minor injuries.

his 2009 Honda Civic drifted off the roadway into the grassy cen- ter median and struck two trees. He was killed upon impact and

causing minor injuries, during an incident in the area of 98 S. Main St. late Monday afternoon, police said.

charged McNeal with simple assault and harassment after Crystal Jackson, 28, of Nicholson, reported that McNeal grabbed her

a building housing Georgetti Painting Co. on West Carey Street on Aug. 17. Landolt drove away and was

reported someone damaged her screen door using a pellet gun sometime between 10 p.m. Monday and 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.

pronounced dead at the scene by

• Seara Peterson, 21, was

and banged her head on the floor.

stopped by state police after he

•Florence Jablowski,ofCharles

Luzerne County Deputy Coroner

charged with a felony count of

She was taken to Community

failed to stop for a red traffic

Street, reported that someone

• Charges are pending against

Gerald Jones, police said.

retail theft after she allegedly

Medical center in Scranton for

signal at North River Street and

shot a hole through her bedroom

The cause of death was deter- mined to be multiple traumatic injuries and the manner of death appears to be accidental, police

concealed two t-shirts and left Boscov’s at 15 S. Main St. with- out paying for them on Monday, police said, adding that she had

• Javon Isaac, 18, was cited

treatment, police said.

Haven man faces a slew of charges after he allegedly had illegal and

Expressway.

counts of driving under the influ-

screen and into her bedroom wall with an unknown caliber weapon on Aug. 29.

said, adding that the case remains open pending further investiga- tion.

two previous retail theft convic- tions.

prescription drugs in his system and was involved in a crash, police said.

each of failure to use a seat belt, failure to stop at red traffic signal

a juvenile after police investi- gated a report by Scott Griffith of Knox Street that someone

Tuesday. The juvenile is believed

Valley Regional Rescue, Valley Regional Ambulance and

with harassment after he allegedly struck a female in the head with

Police allege that Steven K. Koch, 31, of Old Route 940, ini-

and careless driving. HANOVER TWP.

smashed the rear window of his 2005 Mitsubishi Outlander some-

Kisenwether’s Towing assisted. WILKES-BARRE — City

a closed fist in the area of Huber Street Park and South Sherman

tially denied driving when police

Township police reported the fol- lowing:

time between 12 and 4:15 p.m.

police reported the following:

Street on Monday afternoon,

Butler Drive on Aug. 7, but later

• Police arrested Darryl

BernardTaylor,34,ofRidgeStreet,

on charges he assaulted a woman

pital but she got out of the vehicle

to have shot out the window with

• A window was smashed at a

police said.

admitted to driving the vehicle.

a BB gun, police said.

residence on South Welles Street

• A brick was thrown through a

• Ryan Eckhart, 34, was arrest-

His passenger, Nikki Bertolette,

• Eric Santiago, of Keith Street,

on Tuesday.

ed and transported to the Luzerne County Correctional Facility

was injured and had told police she couldn’t remember what hap-

in his residence Friday morning. Amanda Lopez told police Taylor

reported that he started his white 2001 Mazda 626 at about 6:10

his house, heard a noise outside

window at a residence on George Avenue on Sunday.

• Police cited Anthony Paul

after police found him passed out in his vehicle at South Main and Academy Streets Tuesday

pened. Police said they found a mari- juana pipe, a hypodermic needle

struck Neisha Merrill in the face with a rechargeable flashlight as Merrill was sleeping, according to

a.m. Wednesday, returned inside

and saw two males get in his vehi-

Lizzi, 20, of Wilkes-Barre, with public drunkenness and underage drinking when he was allegedly

afternoon and discovered he had numerous warrants for his arrest, police said, adding that a subse-

and empty heroin bags on Koch, and allege he discarded an empty pill bottle containing heroin pack-

a news release. Taylor and Merrill left the resi- dence in a vehicle. Taylor was

cle and drive away. The vehicle bears Pennsylvania license plate JGL3563. Anyone with informa-

seen intoxicated on North Main

quentsearch revealed thatEckhart

ets and more needles. A foren-

stopped on Hazle Street, Wilkes-

tion should call police at 570-825-

Street on Aug. 25.

was in possession of marijuana.

sic examination of Koch’s blood

Barre, where he told city police

1254.

• Police arrested David S.

• Police on Tuesday picked up

determined that he was under the

he was taking Merrill to the hos-

Carpenter, 24, of Hillside Street, Wilkes-Barre, on Monday after he allegedly threatened a woman with a gun while they were riding an ATV. The woman said she told Carpenter he was driving too fast when he allegedly threatened her,

Justin Mausteler on an arrest war- rant while they were investigating

a fight at 145 N. Sherman St. on Tuesday afternoon, police said, adding that Mausteler was alleg- edly in possession of a syringe and a crack pipe.

influence of Alprazolam, marijua- na, heroin and cocaine the day of the crash, police said. Koch was charged with two counts of driving under the influ- ence of drugs, recklessly endan- gering another person, posses-

before they got there. Police found Merrill on North Washington Street and took her to Wilkes- Barre General Hospital. Taylor was charged with sim- ple assault and harassment. He

FREELAND — Michael E. Salko, 25, of Ridge Street,

Freeland, was arraigned Tuesday on charges he stole a .22-caliber rifle from a residence on Hemlock Street on Friday. Police allege Salko sold the rifle for $40, accord- ing to the criminal complaint.

according to the criminal com- plaint. Carpenter was charged with

• A woman reported Tuesday at someone opened credit card accounts in her name and accrued

sion of heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving with a sus- pended license, reckless driving,

was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $5,000 bail.

Salko was charged with two counts of theft and a single count of receiving stolen property. He

terroristic threats, simple assault

charges on them totaling more

careless driving and false reports

• Whitney Catizone, of

Diamond Avenue, reported

was jailed at the Luzerne County

and harassment. He was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional

than $7,500. NICHOLSON — State police

concerning an accident. Charges were filed with

Monday several items were stolen

Correctional Facility for lack of $10,000 bail.

+(ISSN No. 0896-4084)

+(ISSN No. 0896-4084)

MuNICIPAL BRIEFS

 

USPS 499-710

DURYEA — Borough

following. A special meeting

Residents are reminded the

Sept. 12.

p.m. Monday and 6 to 8 p.m.

2013-248

Issue No. 2013-170

Council will hold a public work

will be 6 p.m. Sept. 18 to open

rebate period for 2013 Hanover

County and borough taxes

Tuesday. For an appointment,

Newsroom

session at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in

bids for the renovations of the

Area school taxes ends Sept.

are in penalty and can be paid

call 570-825-4043. The tax

829-7242

the borough building, with the

borough building.

12. If making installment pay-

at the tax office until Dec. 31.

office will be closed Sept. 20

jbutkiewicz@timesleader.com

Circulation

monthly meeting immediately

WARRIOR

RUN

ments, the first payment is due

Collection hours are 2 to 4

through Sept. 27.

Jim McCabe – 829-5000 jmccabe@timesleader.com

 
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LOCAL

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

Thursday, September 5, 2013 PAGE 3A

IN BRIEF

LOCAL THE TIMES LEADER www.t imesleader .c om Thur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE

Submitted photo

Funfest public relations coordinator Julie Ferry poses with Curtis ‘TurkMattern, who will be grand marshal for Sunday’s Funfest Parade.

HAZLETON

Funfest selects parade marshal

Curtis “Turk” Mattern — a man who has ridden his motorized wheelchair dec- orated with mummer string band-style feathers in Hazleton’s Funfest parades for nearly a decade — will lead this year’s parade Sunday as grand marshal. Mattern, of Fritzingertown Senior Living Community in Butler Township, has been a musician since grade school. He joined the Keystone Mummers’ String Band from Pottsville in 1987 and, in later years, when he needed a scooter to get around, band members outfitted it with feathers, and he led the band in performances until it disbanded in 2002. His favorite event was always the Funfest Parade, he said. “His obvious love of the event and his enthusiasm make him a crowd favorite, so the committee was unanimous in their vote to give him this honor,” said Funfest public relations coordinator Julie Ferry. Instead of riding in a special vehicle, the World War II veteran will be in his scooter. Keeping with this year’s Funfest theme, “A Totally 80s Weekend,” he will be dressed as a “senior rocker.” Mattern’s daughter will drive a car behind him with signage identifying him as grand marshal. The parade is set to begin at 2:30 p.m. Sunday near Citizens Bank in West Hazleton and will move east along Route 93, ending at North Pine Street in Hazleton. Funfest runs 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

LUZERNE COUNTY

Coalition recaps flood recovery

The Disaster Recovery Coalition of Luzerne County will present a Report to the Community on Monday, which marks the second anniversary of flood- ing from tropical storms Irene and Lee. The coalition will host a reception from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Luzerne County Management Agency building, 185 Water St., Wilkes-Barre. Michael Zimmerman, chief executive officer of the Family Service Association of Northeastern Pennsylvania, called the event “an extremely important gath- ering for our community to speak about the past, present and — most impor- tantly — future responses to large-scale disasters that may strike our commu- nity. For any organization, municipality or entity that gets involved in disaster response and/or recovery, this should be a mandatory attendance.”

SCRANTON

Bank promotes Everhart access

Bank of America’s “Museums on Us” program offers free weekend access to Bank of America and Merrill Lynch cardholders at select museums across the country, including the Everhart Museum of Natural History, Science & Art in Scranton. The promotion applies to cardhold- ers only; guests are not eligible for free admission. The program excludes fund- raising events, special exhibitions and ticketed shows. Learn more at http:// museums.bankofamerica.com.

HARRISBURG

Holiday crashes kill at least 11

Eleven people were killed and 262 others were injured in the 661 crashes investigated by the Pennsylvania State Police during the four-day Labor Day holiday weekend driving period of Friday through Monday. Those figures do not include crashes investigated by local police. During the holiday, troopers cited 819 individuals for not wearing seat belts, 111 for not securing children in safety seats and 9,149 for speeding. They arrested 351 operators on suspicion of driving under the influence. Of the 661 crashes investigated, 77 of them, includ- ing two of the fatal crashes, were alcohol related.

MedicaidreformsinpipelineforPa.

Secretary of Public Welfare Beverly D. Mackereth says plan to increase access for state residents

BILL O’BOYLE

boboyle@timesleader.com

HAZLETON — Pennsylvania “is closer” to finalizing a plan to reform its Medicaid program, the state secretary of public welfare said Wednesday during an area visit. Beverly D. Mackereth out- lined the plan during a presen- tation to the Hazleton Rotary Club at Best Western Genetti’s Inn. Her office has been work- ing with the federal govern- ment to draw up a plan that will be sustainable, Mackereth said “Gov. (Tom) Corbett chal- lenged us to come back to him with a plan to assure increased access for Pennsylvanians,” she said, adding that a final plan might not be ready until 2015. Corbett’s goal is for all Pennsylvanians to have access

to affordable, quality health care coverage, Mackereth said. “To do this, meaningful modernization of the exist- ing Medicaid program must be achieved if we are to cre- ate a sustainable option for Pennsylvania taxpayers,” she said. Medicaid is “an entitlement program,” said Mackereth, jointly funded by the federal and state governments that provides health care coverage to low-income children and adults, the elderly and disabled. The Pennsylvania Medicaid Program is known as Medical Assistance because it includes both the federal Medicaid Program as well as state funded only programs. Pennsylvania Medical Assistance comprises 68.6 percent of the total DPW budget and more than 17.4 million claims are processed annually. One in six state resi- dents, or 2.2 million people, are on Medicaid, representing nearly 30 percent of the state’s general fund budget, she said. Pennsylvania’s Medicaid program is unsustainable without changes, Mackereth

said. Some proposed reforms include: increasing options for long-term care, rolling out a work-search requirement and trimming the amount of ben- efits offered. Pennsylvania remains one of the states yet to expand the Medicaid program as part of the federal Affordable Health Care Act. Mackereth said DPW is the largest human services state agency in the United States with a budget of $28 bil- lion — $10.9 billion in state funds, $14.5 billion in federal funding and $2.5 billion from other sources. The depart- ment employs nearly 17,000 people, she said. Mike Zimmerman, chief executive officer at Family Service Association of Northeastern Pennsylvania, based in Wilkes-Barre, said he was astonished to learn how big the DPW is and how much of the state’s budget it repre- sents, especially in Medical Assistance. Zimmerman asked the sec- retary if more money would be available for his agency’s Family Finding program and

LOCAL THE TIMES LEADER www.t imesleader .c om Thur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE

Aimee Dilger| The Times Leader

A reform plan for the state’s Medicaid program is in the pipeline, but per- haps won’t be ready until 2015, Department of Public Welfare Secretary Beverly Mackereth told attendees at Wednesday’s Hazleton Rotary Club luncheon.

her answer was “no.” The Family Finding program recognizes the role of families and their ability to care for members by using community support resources and service providers, Zimmerman said. The program offers fami- lies the opportunity to come together as the best possible people to make decisions on

keeping their children safe, he said. “Our numbers have been growing,” said Zimmerman. “I was hoping to hear that more funding would be available. Family Finding utilizes kinship care instead of foster homes, and we find that approach saves money because families get involved.”

Ringing in theJewish NewYear

Ringing in theJewish NewYear Bill Tarutis | Fo r The Times Le ader Rabbi Roger Lerner,

Bill Tarutis | For The Times Leader

Rabbi Roger Lerner, of Temple B’nai B’rith in Kingston, plays the shofar, or ram’s horn, Wednesday before the start of religious services at the synagogue celebrating Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year. Today marks the first day of the year 5774 in the Hebrew calendar. The shofar is used only during certain services during the holiest of Jewish holidays including the new year and will be blown 100 times on Rosh Hashana.

Allegedstripclubrobber testifieshewasframed

William Gronosky says he was at a mall when the Carousel Lounge was robbed in 2012

SHEENA DELAZIO

sdelazio@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – Two BB guns used in the robbery of a Plymouth Township strip club were his, William Gronosky testified Wednesday. Gloves used in the robbery also belonged to him, but Gronosky said he wasn’t there. He told the court he was shopping at the Wyoming Valley Mall with a friend, identified only as “L Money.” Gronosky, 30, of Nanticoke, testified Wednesday at his jury trial on charges that he and another man robbed the owner of the Carousel Lounge along Route 11 at gunpoint on March 15, 2012 and got away with $3,500. Attorneys will present their closing arguments today. But, Gronosky said, the woman who claims she was driving the getaway car is wrong. Courtney Sadusky is a “six-bag-a-day” heroin user who, at one time, had a relationship with him, Gronosky said. That, he said, is why Sadusky, 24, fabricated the story of Gronosky and Kevin Williams robbing the club. Sadusky framed him, he said, and stole the BB guns and a pair of gloves

from his home to do so. “I didn’t do this,” Gronosky said. He admitted he was at the Carousel Lounge the day of the robbery, but not until much later in the day

LOCAL THE TIMES LEADER www.t imesleader .c om Thur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE

Gronosky

when he went there to purchase drugs. He said he visited the strip club three to four times a week and even played pool with owner Julius Greenberg. That’s how, Gronosky said, he knows Greenberg and how he is familiar with the club — not because he was there to rob the club. Gronosky said it’s simply a coinci- dence that he was picked up by police near Berwick in a gas station bathroom after the robbery with Williams. They were running, Gronosky admit- ted, but only because they were scared – not because they committed any crimes. Sadusky told a different story early Wednesday, saying she drove Gronosky and Williams to the Carousel Lounge around 9 a.m. on March 15, 2012. Gronosky and Williams had ski masks on, Sadusky testified, and she said they wore gloves and were armed with guns. About 15 minutes later, Gronosky

allegedly told Sadusky that they pushed the owner of the strip club to the floor and took about $3,500. Sadusky testified she then took the two men to her parents’ home in Bear Creek, where they counted the money.

She said the two men then asked her

to drive them to the Wyoming Valley Mall in Wilkes-Barre Township, where she later picked them up with a num- ber of shopping bags. Sadusky pleaded guilty Wednesday morning to a criminal conspiracy charge relating to the robbery before also testifying in an unrelated crimi- nal conspiracy charge in a burglary at a Laflin home she participated in with Gronosky. County Judge Michael Vough said Sadusky will be sentenced on Nov. 7. Carousel owner, Julius Greenberg, was the first witness to testify Wednesday. The club owner said the door of his business was unlocked because he had been in and out to his car that morn- ing, and that two men entered his office around 9 a.m., pushed him down and took money and items in Greenberg’s pockets before fleeing. Williams was convicted of related charges in May and sentenced in July to 10 to 20 years in prison.

Areaman

accused

ofmaking

deaththreats

Wayne Harding, 57, charged for alleged statements about Freeland officials, police

EDWARD LEWIS

elewis@timesleader.com

HANOVER TWP. — Wearing a T-shirt that read “Got Blood,” 57-year-old Wayne Harding was arraigned late Tuesday night on charges he threatened to kill Freeland police officers and offi-

cials and burn the borough to the ground. Harding’s threat was taken seri- ously; borough officials postponed their monthly council meeting. Mayor Tami Martin and council President Robert Quinn did not return messages for comment Wednesday. Harding was arraigned by District Judge

LOCAL THE TIMES LEADER www.t imesleader .c om Thur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE

Joseph Halesey

Harding

in Hanover Township on a single count of ter- roristic threats. He was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $25,000 bail. Quinn contacted Freeland police at about noon Tuesday, alerting them to the alleged verbal threat by Harding. According to the criminal com- plaint:

Quinn told police Harding approached a borough main- tenance employee, who is not named, on Monday in the Freeland Park on Front Street. Harding allegedly told the employee, “I’m going to burn the town of Freeland to the ground, then I’m going to kill the code officer and his fam- ily, and then I’m going to kill the police.” Harding told the employee the reason he was going to kill Code Enforcement Officer Brian Maso and police officers was because of his recent arrest for allegedly threatening Maso. Maso had cited Harding with a code violation in recent days. Court records show police charged Harding on Aug. 21 with terroristic threats and two counts of disorderly conduct. Those charges were withdrawn, permit- ting Harding to be released from the county prison, where he had been jailed for lack of $5,000 bail. Police then cited Harding with a summary charge of disorderly conduct for alleged threats toward Maso. A preliminary hearing is sched- uled on Sept. 11.

PAGE 4A Thursday, September 5, 2013

NEWS

www.timesleader.com THE TIMES LEADER

Shickshinnylandlordsrequiredtokeeprecords

Property owners to provide contact info to borough, maintain list of tenants

TOM HUNTINGTON

Times Leader Correspondent

SHICKSHINNY — Borough council enacted Tuesday an ordinance establishing a landlord registration system that requires property owners to maintain a record of rentals and tenants occupying their properties. The ordinance stems from borough officials experiencing difficulty in identifying landlords, some of whom fail to abide by

borough codes and, accord- ing to language authored by solicitor John Pike, pro- mote the safety, welfare and health of borough residents. In addition, council at the recommendation of Mayor Beverly Moore adopted a new set of rules regarding the operation of the pub- lic playground at Oak and North Canal streets. Moore received approval for the park to be open only from dawn to dusk. Police will disperse people who violate the rules, she said.

The decision stems, council was told, from incidents of vandalism and fights occur- ring at the park after dark. Under the landlord ordi- nance, property owners will be required to provide to the borough their name, address and telephone num- ber, number of occupants and the names of current tenants. As a prerequisite to entering into a rental agree- ment, the ordinance stipu- lates that a license must be obtained for each rental unit at a cost of $25 per unit.

In addition, information must be updated and pre- sented to the codes enforce- ment officer within 10 days of any change in residents or residency. Council also conducted an executive session at the conclusion of the regular meeting, during which time shouting could be heard behind closed doors. Council members, how- ever, declined to discuss the nature of the non-public meeting. Soon after council went

back into public session, Councilman Micheal Steeber made a motion to accept a Municipal Drug Task Force agreement that had been submitted by state Attorney General Kathleen Kane. The agreement provides for the coordination of narcotics investigations, enforcement and prosecu- tion of those people engaged in illegal drug activities as well as for reimbursement by the Attorney General’s Office for police activities approved in advance by state officials.

Other agenda items approved by council includ- ed:

• Acceptance of a dona-

tion from JHA Engineering of Tunkhannock for the purchase of a community bulletin board.

• The adoption of a brake

retarder ordinance; warning signs will be posted at the east and west entrances into the community.

• The creation of a

parking permit program for Bartoli Avenue, West Vine Street and North Susquehanna Avenue.

• The approval of Reilly

& Associates of Wilkes- Barre andAshburnAdvisors of Wilkes-Barre to provide

engineering and administra- tive expertise for a proposed $1.7 million block grant pro- gram.

• The hiring of Jim

Shepherd in the street department and Jane Wido as cleaning person for the borough building.

• The tabling of the pay-

ment of invoices for ammu- nition by the police depart- ment after Steeber asked for more information on the type and caliber of ammuni- tion.

PAGE 4A Thursday, Sept ember 5, 2013 NE WS www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER Shickshinnylandlords re

Judge rebuffs challenge to $1.2B PPL power line

position of the compa- nies and the National Park Service that these permits were issued properly and after thorough study,” said Stephanie Raymond, PPL vice president of transmis- sion and substations. “We will move forward with con- struction as planned.” The $1.2 billion Susquehanna-Roseland line, a partnership between PPL and New Jersey-based PSE&G, is needed to cope with increasing demand on the region’s electric grid,

according to the utility

companies, who jointly her-

alded Friday’s decision by

Judge Richard Roberts as

“the right decision for mil-

lions of people throughout

the mid-Atlantic region who

will have more reliable elec-

tric service because of this

project.” Roberts’ decision, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., rejected a

lawsuit filed by environmen-

tal advocacy groups seek-

ing to overturn last year’s approval of the 500-kilovolt

transmission line that will stretch 145 miles between

PPL’s Susquehanna nucle-

ar power plant in Salem

ROGER DUPUIS

rdupuis@civitasmedia.com

Government agencies acted properly in approving a high-voltage power line through the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, a federal judge has found, rejecting a chal- lenge by environmentalists opposed to the project. “This ruling affirms the

PAGE 4A Thursday, Sept ember 5, 2013 NE WS www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER Shickshinnylandlords re

substation near Newark, N.J. The National Parks Conservation Association, together with nine other organizations, filed suit against then-Interior Secretary Kenneth Salzar in October, claiming offi- cials did not perform an adequate review of poten- tial environmental impacts, and that they broke other laws during the permitting process. “The plaintiffs have not shown that NPS’ decision was arbitrary and capri- cious,” the judge wrote, add- ing the decision was “ratio-

nally based on the adminis- trative record.”

The line already is under

construction elsewhere

in Pennsylvania and New

Jersey. A statement released

by PSE&G earlier in August indicated that construc- tion at the Water Gap was to begin Tuesday with

access road construction.

Construction in the four

miles of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation

Area will take about six months to complete, the utility said. The line is expected to be

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PUCreviewing TL’srequest for information

Newspaper wants letter at center of PPL investigation made public

ANDREW M. SEDER

aseder@timesleader.com

HARRISBURG — The Right-To-Know officer for the state’s Public Utility Commission has respond- ed to a Times Leader request to make an anony- mous letter at the heart of an investigation into PPL public. The response letter, signed by PUC Right To Know Officer Rosemary Chiavetta, said “A legal review is necessary to determine whether the record is a record subject to access under this act. A response is expected to be provided to you on or before October 8, 2013.” The Times Leader filed a Right-To-Know request last week after a proposed settlement agreement between PPL Corp., an electric utility company based in Allentown that serves more than two dozen counties in eastern and central Pennsylvania, and the PUC was made public.

The region’s largest

electric utility is accused

of violating its internal guidelines and state law as part of its response to a late-October 2011 snow- storm that left 388,318 of

PPL’s 1.4 million custom- ers, including many in

Luzerne County, without

power. PPL Corp. faces a $60,000 fine from the PUC, which has asked for public comment on the matter before approving the settlement, though all details of the matter are not being given to the public. According to a summa- ry of the incident offered by the PUC:

On April 26, 2012, after

receiving an anonymous

letter from a PPL employ-

ee, the PUC’s independent

Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement, or I&E, began an informal investi- gation into PPL’s alleged improper transfer of a restoration crew in the wake of the Oct. 29, 2011, snowstorm. The allegation was that the restoration crew was

transferred from a higher

priority job in order to restore service to a lower priority job. The bureau alleged this was a viola- tion of PUC regulations, the Public Utility Code and the company’s resto- ration procedures.

That anonymous letter was not included in the public file, which led to the Times Leader filing. Melissa Melewsky, a media law counsel with the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association, said, “The letter is presumptively public pursuant to the Right to Know Law, and it is the PUC’s burden to show if the record is exempt from public access if they deny your request.”

www.timesleader.com THE TIMES LEADER

NATION & WORLD

Thursday, September 5, 2013 PAGE 5A

IN BRIEF

www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER NATION & WORLD Thursday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE 5A

AP photo

Here they are, back in Atlantic City

Miss America contestants wait to be intro- duced after arriving in Atlantic City, N.J., on Tuesday. The Miss America pageant is back in the city where it began, six years after spurning the city for Las Vegas. The pageant held a welcoming ceremony Tuesday for the 53 contestants — one from each state plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S.Virgin Islands. The competition will begin next week.

SPRING,TexaS

1 dead, 3 hurt in school stabbing

A fight inside a Houston-area high school escalated into a series of stab- bings on Wednesday that killed a 17-year-old student and wounded sev- eral others, sheriff’s officials said. Three students described as “persons of interest” were taken into custody after the fight in the cafeteria at Spring High School, about 20 miles north of Houston. Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia said authorities were not search- ing for any other suspects and that everyone involved in the fight were stu- dents from the school district. Two victims were hospitalized with minor injuries. A third, identified only as a 16-year-old, was in surgery.

DeNVeR

NAACP, KKK reps’ meeting a first

A secret meeting between a represen- tative of the Wyoming chapter of the NAACP and a Ku Klux Klan organizer ended with the Klan organizer paying $50 to join the civil rights organization, participants said. Saturday’s meeting between Jimmy Simmons, president of the Casper NAACP, and John Abarr, a KKK orga- nizer from Great Falls, Mont., took place at a hotel in Casper, Wyo., under tight security, the Casper Star-Tribune reported. The Southern Poverty Law Center and the United Klans of America said Tuesday that the meeting was a first. Abarr said on Tuesday he filled out an NAACP membership form so he could get the group’s newsletters and some insight into its views. He said he paid a $30 fee to join, plus a $20 dona- tion.

BOSTON

Police concerned over ‘Molly’ drug

Police say they’re concerned there may be a bad batch of the drug known as Molly being sold in the Northeast after multiple overdoses in Massachusetts and New York and likely at least three deaths. Three people overdosed on Molly, a pure form of ecstasy, last week at the House of Blues club. One of them was a college student from New Hampshire who died. Over the weekend, there were two non-fatal Molly overdoses at a concert in Boston. And in New York City, two people died and four others were hos- pitalized during a dance music festival. New York officials said the deaths there appeared to be linked to Molly, also known as MDMA.

HaRRISBURG

Chair of Pa. roads panel ‘critical’

The chairman of the Transportation Committee in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives is in critical condi- tion after complications arose after a leg operation, a caucus spokesman said Wednesday. The medical condition of Rep. Dick Hess, R-Bedford, took a downturn over the weekend, said House Republican spokesman Steve Miskin. Miskin said Hess, 74, was recover- ing from a leg operation he had about two weeks ago when the medical issues arose. Miskin said family members pro- vided the update to the legislative staff in Hess’ district office.

Women’scaptorhangsself

Ariel Castro, 53, pronounced dead at hospital

ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS

AP Legal Affairs Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Cleveland man serving a life sentence for holding three women captive in his home for a decade hanged himself in his prison cell with a bedsheet, officials said Wednesday in another shocking twist in the case that transfixed and

appalled the city.

Ariel Castro, 53, was found hanging Tuesday night at the state prison in Orient, said JoEllen Smith, a spokeswom- an for the corrections system. Prison medical staff performed CPR before Castro was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. “He took the coward’s way out,” said Elsie Cintron, a neighbor who lived up the

street from the former school bus driver. “We’re sad to hear that he’s dead, but at the same time, we’re happy he’s gone, and now we know he can’t ask for an appeal or try for one if he’s acting like he’s crazy.” Through a spokeswoman, his three victims declined to comment. Castro was sentenced Aug. 1 to life in prison plus 1,000 years after pleading guilty to 937 counts, including kidnap- ping and rape, in a deal to avoid the death penalty. At his sentencing, he told the judge:

“I’m not a monster. I’m sick.” A scornful Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty said:

“This man couldn’t take, for even a month, a small portion of what he had dished out for more than a decade.” Castro had been in a cell

by himself in protective cus- tody because of his notoriety, meaning he was checked every 30 minutes, but was not on a suicide watch, which entails constant supervision, Smith said. She said Castro used a bedsheet. An autopsy showed the death was suicide by hanging, said Dr. Jan Gorniak, Franklin County coroner. The American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio asked the prison system to conduct a full investigation. Castro’s captives — Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight — dis- appeared separately between 2002 and 2004, when they were 14, 16 and 20 years old. They were rescued from Castro’s run-down house in a tough Cleveland neighborhood

www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER NATION & WORLD Thursday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE 5A

AP photo

Ariel Castro in the courtroom dur- ing the sentencing phase of his trial in Cleveland. Castro, who held three women captive for a decade, committed suicide Tuesday.

on May 6 when Berry broke out a screen door and yelled to neighbors. Elation over the women’s rescue turned to shock as details emerged about their captivity. Castro fathered a child with Berry while she was being held. The girl was 6 when she was freed.

Investigators also disclosed that the women were bound with chains, repeatedly raped and deprived of food and bathroom facilities. Knight told authorities that Castro impregnated her repeatedly and made her miscarry by starving her and punching her

in the belly. Berry was forced

to give birth in a plastic kid- die pool. On Castro’s old street Wednesday, freshly planted landscaping was in bloom on the site where his house stood before it was demolished by the city a month ago. Satellite TV trucks returned to record the scene. Castro’s suicide “does give a little bit of closure to the fami- lies and people that got affect- ed by what he did,” resident Jessica Burchett said, “but at the same time he deserved to be in there for his life because of what he did to those girls.”

www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER NATION & WORLD Thursday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE 5A

AP photo

Palestinians chant anti-Israeli slogans as others hold a picture of Sheik Raed Salah, the leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, during a protest Wednesday to condemn what protesters claim was a desecration of Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem by Jewish extremists.

Israel:Keepsettlementsintact

Proposal floated as part of peace talks, says official, but deemed unacceptable by Palestinians

The Associated Press

RAMALLAH, West Bank — Israel has proposed leaving intact dozens of Jewish settlements and military bases in the West Bank as part of a package to establish a Palestinian state in provi- sional borders, a Palestinian official told The Associated Press on Wednesday, in the first detailed glimpse at recently relaunched peace talks. The official said the proposal is unac- ceptable to the Palestinians, underscor- ing the tough road ahead as the sides try to reach an agreement ending decades of conflict. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because Israel and the Palestinians have pledged to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry not to discuss the content of their talks with the media — a pledge that has largely held up until now.

For their future state, the Palestinians seek the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza Strip, territories captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war. With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opposed to a return to the pre-1967 lines, the idea of a Palestinian state in temporary borders has gained appeal with the Israelis. Such a deal could give the Palestinians independence, while leaving the thorni- est issues, such as the fate of Jerusalem and the status of millions of Palestinian refugees and their descendants, to later negotiations. The Palestinians reject any notion of a provisional agreement, fearing that a temporary arrangement that falls short of their dreams will become permanent. Talks resumed in late July after a nearly five-year break stemming largely from Israeli settlement construction. The Palestinians have objected to Israeli

construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. The Palestinians say these settlements, now home to more than 500,000 Israelis, make it increasingly difficult to partition the land between two people. After months of U.S. mediation, the Palestinians agreed to resume talks. Although Israel did not pledge to freeze settlement construction, U.S. officials have said they expect both sides to avoid provocative moves. Negotiators have been quietly meeting once or twice a week for the past month or so. The Palestinian official said formal talks on borders have not yet started, and that negotiations have focused on security matters. He said the Israelis want to retain control of the West Bank’s border with Jordan, keep early-warning stations on hilltops and retain military bases near the Jordanian border.

How ‘affordable’ is health care law?

RICARDO ALONSO- ZALDIVAR

Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The No. 1 question about President Barack Obama’s health care law is whether consumers will be able to afford the coverage. Now the answer is coming in. The biggest study yet of premiums posted by states finds that the sticker price for a 21-year-old buying a mid-range policy will average about $270 a month. That’s before government tax cred- its that act like a discount for most people, bringing down the cost based on their income. List-price premiums for a 40-year-old buying a mid- range plan will average close to $330, the study by Avalere Health found. For a 60-year- old, they were nearly double

that at $615 a month. Starting Oct. 1, people who don’t have health care coverage on their job can go to new online insurance markets in their states to shop for a private plan and find out if they qualify for a tax credit. Come Jan. 1, vir- tually all Americans will be required to have coverage, or face fines. At the same time, insurance companies will no longer be able to turn away people in poor health. The study points to the emergence of a competitive market, said lead author Caroline Pearson, a vice president of the private data analysis firm. But it’s a mar- ket with big price differences among age groups, states and even within states. A copy was provided to The Associated Press. The bottom line is mixed:

Many consumers will like

www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER NATION & WORLD Thursday, Sept ember 5, 2013 PA GE 5A

AP photo

The No. 1 question about President Barack Obama’s health care law is whether consumers will be able to afford the coverage and access to medical supplies such as these.

their new options, particu- larly if they qualify for a tax credit. But others might have to stretch to afford coverage. “We are seeing competi- tive offerings in every market if you buy toward the low end of what’s available,” said

Pearson, a vice president of Avalere. However, for uninsured people who are paying noth- ing today “this is still a big cost that they’re expected to fit into their budgets,” Pearson added.

Tussle ongoing overPSU’s $60M fine

Commonwealth Court judges on Wednesday rejected NCAA’s motion to dismiss the case

MARYCLAIRE DALE

Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — State offi- cials can pursue their bid to steer Penn State’s $60 million fine over the Jerry Sandusky scandal to advocacy efforts in Pennsylvania, a state court has ruled in a set- back for the NCAA. The NCAA calls the state effort a violation of the school’s 2012 consent decree, and therefore a breach of federal contract law. However, the Commonwealth Court judges rejected the NCAA’s motion to dismiss the case. The court ruled that a February state law known as the Endowment Act, which cre- ates a state trust fund to hold the money, did not interfere with Penn State’s earlier settlement with the NCAA. “The consent decree is silent as to who is to control or administer the endowment and is also silent on geographic limitations on the use of the funds,” Judge Anne E. Covey wrote for the panel, which split 6-1 on the issue. The July 2012 settlement orders that the money be spent on child sexual-abuse programs, and the NCAA wants the money available for programs nation- wide. State Sen. Jake Corman, R-Centre County, and Treasurer Rob McCord filed suit to ensure the money is spent within the state. “This decision brings us one major step closer to resolving the matter and having worthy child protection and sexual abuse advocacy programs in Pennsylvania begin receiving the funds,” Corman said Wednesday in a statement. Donald Remy, the NCAA’s chief legal officer, said the case presents important issues of state versus federal law. “We are reviewing the court’s opinion in detail and will decide next steps after we have had an opportunity to consider all of the options available,” Remy said. Penn State agreed to the NCAA penalties a year ago, along with a temporary loss of football scholarships and a four- year ban on post-season play. The first of five $12 million pay- ments has been set aside but, amid the litigation, not paid out to anyone. Penn State has remained on the sidelines of the dispute and previously asked the two sides to try to negotiate a resolution. The dissenting judge Wednesday, President Judge Dan Pelligrini, agreed with the NCAA that the suit should not move for- ward unless the university signs on as a plaintiff.

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www.timesleader.com THE TIMES LEADER

Paidcontractorchargedwithfailingtoperformservice

EDWARD LEWIS

elewis@timesleader.com

WEST PITTSTON — A contractor formerly from Plains Township was charged by Wilkes- Barre police detectives on Wednesday with failing to begin renovations to a house after he cashed a check from the homeown- er. Detectives allege George Poplawski, 41, of Country Side Road, Honesdale, cashed a $900 check given to him by Patricia Koschack, of East Sidney Street, last Oct. 18 for renovations to her house. The $900 down pay- ment was more than

half of the $1,600 home improvement contract, which called for renova- tions to sidewalks, drain tile and stone, the shoring up of floors and removal all garbage and debris, according to the criminal complaint. The complaint alleges Poplawski “Has yet to do any work as he agreed

to in the contract” as of Tuesday.

Poplawski

was

arraigned by District Judge Joseph Carmody in West Pittston on a charge of receives advance pay- ment for services and fails to perform. He was released without bail. Poplawski was in Carmody’s courtroom on

Wednesday for a prelimi- nary hearing on related charges. Exeter police allege Poplawski, formerly of West Carey Street, Plains, was hired by Matt Stuka to turn a single-family house into a rental unit with two apartments on Harland Street in February 2012. Poplawski began reno- vations but allegedly used below-grade materials, installed wrong-sized pipe fittings and electri- cal panel boxes and junc- tion boxes, and failed to replace the front porch of Stuka’s property. Stuka previously said he learned he was billed by Poplawski for new materials when existing

and used windows, pipes and electrical wires from other jobs were used. Stuka, who paid Poplawski nearly $73,000, hired two other contrac- tors to replace improperly installed drywall and the electrical system. Poplawski waived his right to a preliminary hearing sending charges of theft and deceptive busi- ness practices to Luzerne County Court. He remains free on $25,000 bail on the charges filed by Exeter police. A preliminary hearing on the charges filed by Wilkes- Barre police is scheduled on Sept. 11 before District Judge Martin Kane in Wilkes-Barre.

CouRt bRIEfS

WILKES-BARRE

The case of a Hazleton man

scheduled to stand trial this week on charges he pistol- whipped one man and held others against their will in 2012 has been continued to November. Reginald McCoy, 42, of

Peace Street, is scheduled to stand trial on 10 related charges on Nov. 12, county Judge David Lupas said. McCoy is represented by attorney Charles Ross.

Assistant District Attorney

Molly Hanlon Mirabito is prosecuting the case. McCoy previously had been jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility but was released in May on $25,000 unsecured bail that carries a number of conditions, including a curfew. He also is required

to undergo counseling and

have no contact with vic-

tims involved in the case. According to the criminal complaint filed by Hazleton police, they were called on Nov. 25 to Monges Street for the report of a man who was assaulting people with a gun. Police were told one man, Gary Stemko, had been pistol-whipped and that several other people were being held against their will in a nearby house. WILKES-BARRE

An attorney for the city of Wilkes-Barre and Mayor Tom Leighton filed court papers Wednesday seek- ing to have a developer’s $1.5 million lawsuit against them dismissed. Attorney John Dean filed court papers Wednesday requesting that a lawsuit

filed in May by South Main Plaza, L.P., be tossed out and a judgment be made in favor of the city and the mayor. The suit seeks compensa- tion for loss of income and other damages and alleges the developer has already spent $1.5 million in land purchase and other related costs. According to the suit, in July 2001, South Main Plaza and the city entered into an agreement of sale. The developer bought a parcel of land adjacent to the plaza for $150,000. The vacant parcel was to be used for construction of a multi- unit shopping center, and the agreement called for the city to assist in obtain- ing “permanent, irrevocable and exclusive access” to and

from South Pennsylvania Avenue to the vacant lot, according to the lawsuit. “The city has repeatedly failed to make the best effort … let alone its required ‘best effort’ — to acquire access to Pennsylvania Boulevard,” the suit states. “As the city is aware, the lack of this access, as well as the city’s failure to fulfill its other obligations under the (agreement) has prevented South Main Plaza from beginning construction on the project.” In Dean’s filing, he says there was no breach of con- tract and that the city made every effort possible to help the developer. Dean filed a counter- claim alleging, among other counts, breach of contract and fraud.

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NEWS

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PAGE 8A Thursday, September 5, 2013

NEWS

www.timesleader.com THE TIMES LEADER

ADVERTISEMENT

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PAGE 10A Thursday, September 5, 2013

OBITUARIES

www.timesleader.com THE TIMES LEADER

BRIAN DYLAN

MARSTELL SIMKULAK, 16, passed away on Aug. 12, 2013. A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday in St. John the Evangelist Church, Pittston. For more information, visit www.acommunityfuneral- home.com.

LINDA KEIPER-QUINN,

57, of Hazleton, died Aug. 18, 2013, in Timber Ridge Health Care Center. Born in Wilkes- Barre, daughter of Henry and Lillian Shive Keiper of Pocono Lake, she was a graduate of Pocono Mountain High School and Geisinger Danville. Linda was employed as a licensed prac- tical nurse at Geisinger Medical Center, Danville. Preceding her was her husband, Doug, 2005. Surviving are her parents, aunts, cousins and friends. Memorial service 1 p.m. Saturday in Faith Lutheran Church, 550 Route 940, Blakeslee. Friends may call noon to service. Arrangements by Lehman Family Funeral Service Inc., 403 Berwick St., White Haven. For information, visit www.lehmanfuneralhome.com.

LEONARD BOROSKI,

of Plains Township, died on

Friday, Aug. 23, 2013, at the Julia Ribaudo Extended Care Facility, Lake Ariel.

A graveside burial service

will be held at 1 p.m. Friday

in the St. Joseph Cemetery, Hudson. The service will be officiated by the Rev. Joseph Greskiewicz, pastor of Ss. Peter and Paul Church, Plains Township, with military honors following. Arrangements by the Yanaitis Funeral Home, Plains Township.

ARLENE ZIBUCK,

80, of Dallas, died Wednesday

at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, Plains Township. Funeral arrangements are pending from the Andrew Strish Funeral Home, 11 Wilson St., Larksville.

ELIZABETH “BETTY”

KOVACH, 90, of Wilkes-Barre, died Aug. 29, 2013, at home as a result of a fire. Born in Wilkes- Barre, daughter of the late John and Veronica Krivenko Kovach, Betty was formerly employed at Social Security Administration as a computer programmer. She was a member of St. Mary’s Byzantine Catholic Church. Surviving are nephews, Richard Sesny (wife Marie), Harrisburg, and Charles Sesny (wife Gay), Russellville, Ark. Panachida will be 10:30 a.m. Friday at Yeosock Funeral Home, 40 S. Main St., Plains Township. Office of Christian Burial 11 a.m. in St. Mary’s Byzantine Catholic Church. Relatives and friends may call 9 a.m. to service.

JOAN M. “JUNIE”

ANDREWS, 71, of Old Forge, died Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013, in Hospice Community Care, Dunmore. Born in Old Forge, she was a daughter of the late Harvey and Dorothy Anzalone Riviello. Preceding her were husband, David Andrews; broth- ers, Ross, Samuel, Arthur and Harvey Riviello; and compan- ion, John Rascan. Surviving are brothers, Albert Riviello, Robert Riviello (Ofelia), Gerald Riviello, Edward Riviello (Christine), all of Old Forge; sis- ters, Elizabeth Spinelli, Monroe, Conn.; Rose Marie Fidanza, Stuart, Fla.; Dorothy Kollman, Cary, N.C.; Karen Monacelli- Marks, Taylor; nieces and neph- ews. Funeral 11 a.m. Friday at Louis V. Ciuccio Funeral Home, 145 Moosic Road, Old Forge. Friends may call 9 a.m. to ser- vices.

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LemueL L. SitLer

Sept. 2, 2013

Lemuel L. Sitler, 80, of Stone Church Road, Berwick, died Monday, Sept. 2, 2013, at Geisinger Medical Center, Danville.

He was born Sept. 21, 1932,

in Berwick, and was a son of the late Raymond and Freda Whitmire Sitler. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, sta- tioned in Germany as an MP. Lemuel worked with his father and brother in the masonry business and briefly for U.S. Radium. He then start- ed working for Weis Markets in Berwick, Edwardsville and Nanticoke before retiring from Weis Markets in Hazleton in 1994. During some of this time, he was assistant manager at dif- ferent stores. He was a member of Bethany United Methodist Church, Berwick, and the North Berwick Hunting and Fishing Club. Lemuel enjoyed hunting and fishing when he was younger and was an accomplished car- penter, using his skills to make

furniture and build his own home. He was an honest, hard- working man. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother, Sheldon Sitler; and sis- ter, Irene Frantz. He is survived by his wife,

PAGE 10A T hur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 OBITUARIES www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER BRIAN

the former June Nuehard, origi- nally of Espy, to whom he was married for 55 years in April 2013. He also is survived by a son, Kevin L. Sitler, and his wife, Lisa, Kettering, Ohio; two daughters, Deborah Sitler, San Antonio, Texas, and Brenda Schoffstoll and her husband, Kenneth, Laguna Hills, Calif.; two grandchildren, Steven Sitler and Christian Schoffstoll; two brothers, Ron Sitler and his wife, Darlis, York, and Thomas Sitler, Berwick. Funeral services will
be 2 p.m. Friday at the James L. Hinckley Jr. Funeral Home, 1024 Market St., Berwick. Burial will be in Pine Grove Cemetery, Walnut Street. Visitation for friends will be held from 12:30 p.m. until the time of service at the funeral home.

CHarLeS d. Parker

Sept. 1, 2013

Charles D. Parker, 59, of Scranton, went to be with his Lord and Savior on Sunday, Sept. 1, 2013, at his home. He leaves behind his wife, Mary

Ann Cohowicz Parker, and

devoted friend, Patti Robinson. Born in Scranton, he was a son of the late Jesse and Bernice Scott Parker. Charles was a graduate of Scranton Technical High School and was a U.S. Navy veteran. He especially enjoyed fishing and playing golf with his son,

Christopher. Surviving are his children, Christopher and his wife, Debbie, Wilkes-Barre; Desiree, Michelle, Carly and Mariah Parker; a sister, Carla P. Smith; and brothers, Earl and Leon Parker, all of Scranton; 12 grand- children; numerous nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. He was preceded in death by his three sisters, Marcia Blackwell, Thelma Elaine Parker

PAGE 10A T hur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 OBITUARIES www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER BRIAN

and Bernice “FiFi” Parker; and a

brother, Jesse Parker. Relatives and friends
are invited to a celebra- tion of his life to be held at noon Saturday at the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, 716 N. Washington Ave., Scranton, with the Rev. Tawan E. Bailey as celebrant. To send the family an expres- sion of sympathy or an online condolence, please visit www. gubbiottifh.com.

FLorenCe (reteL) kotz

Sept. 2, 2013

Florence (Retel) Kotz, 92, of Garfield Street, in the Honey Pot section of Nanticoke, was called to her eternal rest on Monday evening, Sept. 2, 2013, at Guardian Elder Care Center,

Nanticoke, where she had been

a resident for the past five years. Born on Sept. 22, 1920, in Luzerne, Florence was a daugh- ter of the late Frank X. Retel and Mary (Weisgable) Retel Rogowski. Florence was also the stepdaughter of the late Ignatius Rogowski. Prior to retirement, Florence was employed for many years as a licensed practical nurse for various health care facilities throughout the area. A faithful Catholic, Florence was a lifelong member of the former Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church, Nanticoke, now known as St. Faustina Roman Catholic Parish. In addition to her parents and stepfather, Florence was pre- ceded in death by her beloved husband of 51 years, John Kotz Sr., who passed away on Nov. 23, 1990; her daughter-in-law, Mary T. Kotz; and her brothers and sisters. Florence is survived by her sons, Frank X. Kotz Sr., with

whom she resided, and John

Kotz Jr. and his wife, Rose, Honey Pot; her three grand- children, Frank Kotz Jr. and his wife, Cheryl, Honey Pot; Donna Supey and her husband, Eric, Lehman; and John Kotz III and his wife, Lisa, Newport Township; her seven great- grandchildren, Eric Kotz and his wife, Lacey; Kyle Kotz; Katie

and Amy Supey, and Alicia and

Brian Kotz; her two-great-great

PAGE 10A T hur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 OBITUARIES www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER BRIAN

grandsons, Elliot Gordon and Quentin Gerald Kotz; numerous nieces and nephews. The family expresses their heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the administrative staff and nurses of both Guardian Elder Care Center and Celtic Home Health and Hospice for all the care, compassion and support they bestowed upon Florence and her family throughout her time of illness. Funeral services for Florence will be conducted at 10 a.m. Saturday from the Grontkowski Funeral Home P.C., 51-53 W. Green St., Nanticoke, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial to be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. in St. Faustina Parish, Holy Trinity

Worship Site, 520 S. Hanover

St., Nanticoke, with the Rev. James Nash, her pastor, offici- ating. Interment will follow in Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Cemetery, Nanticoke. Family and friends may call 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, contribu- tions may be made in Florence’s memory to Celtic Home Health

and Hospice, 601 Wyoming

Ave., Kingston, PA 18704.

CominG FuneraLS

anGeLeLLa - Magdalene, funeral Mass 11 a.m. Sept. 21 in Prince of Peace Parish, St. Mary’s Church, West Grace Street, Old Forge. Friends may call 10:30 a.m. until Mass. artySeWiCz - Sonya, friends may call 9:30 to 11 a.m. today at Earl W. Lohman Funeral Home Inc., 14 W. Green St., Nanticoke.

Mass of Christian Burial 11:30 a.m. in St. Faustina’s Church, Hanover Street, Nanticoke. budzak - Brian, Mass of Christian Burial 10 a.m. today in St. Mary of the Assumption Church, Prince of Peace Parish, Old Forge. buFF - Franklin Jr., memorial service 11 a.m. Saturday in St.

Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, Mountain Top. donaHoe - Dr. Francis, funeral noon Saturday in Gate of Heaven Church, 40 Machell Ave., Dallas. doyLe - Freda, visitation 10 to 11 a.m. today in St. Andrew Parish, St. Patrick’s Church, 316 Parish St., Wilkes-Barre. Mass of

Christian Burial 11 a.m. FauSt - Philip, memorial service 10 a.m. today at Harman Funeral Homes & Crematory Inc. (East), 669 W. Butler Drive, Drums. Friends may call 9 a.m. to service. Green - Charles, funeral noon Saturday in Lord-Bixler Funeral Home, 1818 Mahantongo St.,

riCHard JameS Hebda

Sept. 4, 2013

Richard James Hebda of Short Road, Tunkhannock, died at his home on Wednesday. He was born in Luzerne on Aug. 9, 1937, a son of the late Joseph and Lauretta Nafus Hebda. Richard was a 1955 gradu- ate of Luzerne High School and a U.S. Army veteran. He had worked for Kurlancheek and Feinberg Furniture Stores, retiring from Blue

Ridge Communications in

Tunkhannock after 25 years of service. Preceding him in death were brothers, Joseph and John Hebda. Surviving are sons, Richard and his wife, Andrea, and Jeffrey Hebda, all of Tunkhannock; brothers, Robert, Luzerne, and George, Plymouth; sister, Lauretta Amos, Luzerne; grand- children, Jeffrey, Madison and Richard Hebda; several nieces

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and nephews. At Richard’s request,
there will be no viewing or funeral services. Arrangements by Sheldon-Kukuchka Fu neral Home Inc., 73 W. Tioga St., Tunkhannock. Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.shel- donkukuchkafuneralhome.com.

bernard m. Prevuznak

Sept. 4, 2013

Bernard M. Prevuznak, 82, of the Parsons section of Wilkes Barre, passed at away his home (his favorite place to be), sur- rounded by his loving family and close friends. He left us, his lov- ing family, to finally embrace his

Lord and God on Sept 4, 2013. He was born and raised in the North End of Wilkes-Barre and was the proud son of Slovak coal

miners, the late Stephen and

Agnes Prevuznak. He attend- ed Sacred Heart Elementary School, St. Nick’s High School and went on to achieve a bach- elor of arts in education from King’s College. He proudly entered the military at age 17 and began a career that lasted five years, 11 months and 23 days … (as he told us often). He was a disabled American veteran who also achieved the Soldier of the Year

award during his time in the ser-

vice of his country. His professional career was spent educating and helping God’s underprivileged and spe- cial-needs children. He spent years working at the Kis-lyn Juvenile Center and the White Haven Forestry Center. His public school career began at GAR Memorial High School, where he served as a special-education teacher. He then went on to teach at both James M. Coughlin High School and Plains Memorial Junior High School. He retired

from the Wilkes-Barre Area

School District after 35 years of service in 1992. He accom- modated the needs of many

students during his teaching tenure and asked for little in return, with his only reward being the sure pleasure of help- ing a special-needs child. He married his dearly beloved wife and best friend, Lorraine L. Lavix, on Sept. 7, 1957, and would have celebrated 56 years of blissful married life together this Saturday. “Pop,” “The Legend” and “The Professor” had a lifelong love of reading and learning,

and that he tried to instill in his students. His favorite reads were the Holy Bible, the writ- ings of St. Thomas Aquinas and whatever newspapers he could get his hands on. He loved playing and watch- ing the lottery and knew every number for the last 40 years. He was an avid sports fan (he loved those Philadelphia Phillies) and loved watching athletic com- petitions on television, along with “Jeopardy” and “Wheel of Fortune.” He smiled often and never gave up on people or children, specifically those with special needs. His positive attitude even during the course of his illness never wavered. He never wor- ried about much in this life and

PAGE 10A T hur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 OBITUARIES www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER BRIAN

counted his blessings. He was very devoted to his Catholic faith and prayed the rosary daily with his wife. He was a member of Sacred Heart Parish in North End until its closing, but found a home at St. Benedict’s Parish in Parsons. He was also a member of the North End Slovak Club,

the Triangle Club, the Polish

American Veterans Association and The American Legion. In addition to his devoted wife, he is survived by his two sons, Bernard Stephen Prevuznak and his wife, Sandra, Plains Township; Michael Joseph Prevuznak and his wife, Lisa, Wilkes- Barre; grandchildren, Brandon, Mathew and Rachael; great- grandchildren, Kaden and Evan; brother, Stephen Prevuznak, Wilkes-Barre; sisters, Monica Winchillia, Wilkes-Barre, and Jeanne Polacheck and her hus- band, Thomas, Exeter; and numerous nephews, nieces, great-nephews and great-nieces who will miss their “Uncle Ben”

greatly. His family extends their undy- ing gratitude to his doctors, Dr. Desai, Dr. Greenwald and Dr. Andrews, during the course of his illness. Additional thanks are given to the fifth-floor cancer unit at the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital and Erwine’s Home Health and Hospice services. A Mass of Christian
Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Friday in St. Benedict’s Pa rish, St.

Dominic’s Church, 155 Austin Ave., Wilkes-Barre. Private inter- ment will follow in Sacred Heart Slovak Cemetery, Dorchester Drive, Dallas. There will be no calling hours and friends are invited to go directly to church Friday morning. Memorial donations may be made to the Lay Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, c/o Ann Johns, 374 Monument Ave., Wyoming, PA 18644; or to the National Center For Padre Pio, 111 Barto Road, Barto, PA

19504-8730.

Arrangements by the Corcoran Funeral Home Inc., 20 S. Main St., Plains Township. Online condolences may be made at www.corcoranfuneral- home.com.

obituary PoLiCy

The Times Leader publishes free obituaries, which have a 27-line limit, and paid obituaries, which can run with a photograph. A funeral home representative can call the obituary desk at 570-829-7224, send a fax to 570-829-5537 or email to ttlobits@ civitasmedia.com. If you fax or email, please call to confirm. Obituaries must be submitted by 7:30 p.m. for publication in the next edition. Obituaries must be sent by a funeral home or crematory, or must name who is handling arrangements, with address and phone number.

HaroLd e. WaLL Jr.

Sept. 1, 2013

Harold E. Wall Jr., 77, of Centermoreland, passed away Sunday in Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, Plains Township. Born in West Wyoming, he was a son of the late Harold E. Wall and Iva (Frantz) Wall. He was a graduate of Dallas Township High School, class of 1954. He was a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, serving for eight years. For many years he was

employed at Interstate Dress Carriers. Prior to retirement, he was employed by Penns Best for 35 years. He was a member of the Centermoreland United Methodist Church. Harold was an avid hunter and fisherman, and loved spend- ing time with his family at the cabin. Preceding him in death was his brother, Corey Wall. Surviving are his wife of 55

years on Sept. 7, the former

Shirley Marie Shupp; children, Sharon Wall and her partner, Beth Hartman, Mountain Top;

Greg Wall and his wife, Marci,

Mehoopany; Brian Wall and his wife, Amy, Dallas; grandchil- dren, Jourdn and Jessie Wall; brother, Ralph Wall, and his wife, Gerri, Shavertown; sisters, Dorothy Shotwell and her hus- band, Bob, Shavertown; Shirley

PAGE 10A T hur sday, Sept ember 5, 2013 OBITUARIES www.timesleader.c om THE TIMES LEADER BRIAN

Gashi, Robesonia; sister-in-law, Geraldine Wall, Dallas; and sev- eral nieces and nephews. A memorial ser- vice will be held at 4 p.m. Sunday in Centermoreland United Methodist Church, 17 Creamery Road, Centermoreland, with the Rev. Nanci Lycett officiating. Interment will be at the con- venience of the family. Friends

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may call 3 p.m. until time of service. Memorial contributions may be made to the Franklin- Northmoreland Ambulance, 329

Orange Road, Dallas, PA 18612;

or the American C