Tri County Report For May 25th, 2017

A Shenango Township man has been charged with DUI in connection with an accident that took place back on March 26th.  The New Castle News reports 62 year old Dennis Kuth of Whitetail Drive was involved in a two-vehicle accident on Butler Avenue at Cascade Street. Kuth, who had a child in the vehicle, reportdly left the scence and was parked on Rose Avenue where he was inside an ambulance being evaluted for injuies. Kuth failed a field sobriety test and was charged with two counts of driving under the influence and one count of endangering the welfare of children.

Demolition crews were busy tearing two buildings down in downtown New Castle yesterday. The old Fisher’s Dry Goods building and a smaller building next to it began crumbling a few months ago. Fire Chief Eric Perry ordered South Mill and Croton streets in downtown New Castle closed because the buildings posed a threat to traffic. New Castle City Council recently dedicated money for the demoliton. Traffic blockades around the buildings are still in place.

Legislation to allow an expansion of casino-style gambling and lottery play to the internet in Pennsylvania passed the state Senate on Wednesday, as lawmakers look for ways to heal the state’s deficit-ridden finances by capturing new and younger gamblers. The bill passed the Republican controlled chamber 38-12. The Senate bill differs from the house bill where Republican majority leaders are seeking support for legislation to allow slot machine-style gambling in thousands of bars, truck stops and fraternal clubs. Such a provision is seen by proponents as the biggest money-maker for the state, but is expected to get pushback from casinos, which fear losing gambling dollars in the deal.

Senator Bob Casey is speaking out about Donald Trump’s healthcare bill.  The Congressional Budget Office scored the bill yesterday, saying it will leave 23-million people without coverage over the next ten years.  Casey released a statement saying, “Higher costs, less coverage.  That’s the reality facing Pennsylvania families under the congressional Republican health care plan.”   Governor Tom Wolf also released a statement saying “The American Health Care Act will hurt millions of Americans, particularly Pennsylvania seniors.”

Democratic Governor Tom Wolf says he will sign legislation designed to get the state in compliance with federal identification standards. The House passed the Real ID bill yesterday, allowing Pennsylvanians to choose if they want to pay for a new Real ID, which will eventually be required to board an aircraft.  Those who don’t travel much will be able to continue using their current licenses.

A bill that would increase the penalties for people who threaten law enforcement is on its way to the House.  The Senate approved Senate Bill 510 Tuesday.  The legislation would make it a third-degree felony to threaten an officer or a member of his or her household.  Sponsor Guy Reschenthaler says increasing the penalty will protect officers.

The jury selection process for Bill Cosby’s sexual assault case is over.  There are two blacks among the 12 jurors selected.  Two of the six alternates are also black.  Cosby’s defense team has raised concerns about the racial makeup of the jury.  However, 17-percent black is higher than the 13-percent black population in surrounding Allegheny County, where the pool of jurors was drawn from.

An Ambridge man already facing a child neglect charge is in more trouble.  A week after his three-year-old was found wandering on a street by herself, James Colbert has been arrested.  Yesterday, his daughter was found blocks from her home in the rain with only a diaper on.  CYS is getting involved and working to secure the home.

State Police in Butler County report a one vehilce accdeint yesterday morning on Interstate 79 in Lancaster Township.  According to police, 31 year old William Fisher of Erie was southbound on 79 when he lost control of his vehicle causing it to roll over several times. Fisher was taken to Allegheny General Hospital for treatment of minor injuries.