Tri County Report For January 4th, 2019

Dozens of employees at Ellwood City Medical Center are hoping the paychecks they get today won’t bounce.  Employees told KDKA-TV that the hospital’s financial crisis is so bad that their last checks bounced and their health insurance carrier cancelled their policies over unpaid bills.  A Florida-based company took over the struggling hospital in 2017, but has yet to fulfill its promise of shoring up the bottom line.

The New Castle News is reporting Charges against a Shenango Township woman accused of hiding her dead infant son under her porch are being held for prosecution in the Lawrence County Court of Common Pleas. 24 year old Brittnay Robinson of 3202 Ellwood Road waived her right to a preliminary hearing last month. Robinson is facing one count each of concealing the death of a child, abuse of a corpse and tampering with or fabricating physical evidence. The incident took place in November of 2017. A preliminary hearing is set for February 5th.

It may be another year until Beaver County hires an in-house financial administrator.  Next week, the commissioners will consider extending a contract with Susquehanna Accounting and Consulting in Harrisburg, who would agree to bill the county no more than 120-thousand-dollars.  At least one commissioner, Sandie Egley, says she plans to vote against the outsourcing again.  Egley tells the Beaver County Times she wants a financial administrator who works in their office, not Harrisburg.

State Police in Lawrence County report a one vehicle accident in North Beaver Township yesterday afternoon. Police said a 17 year old female was eastbound on Kildoo Road when she lost control of her car crossed both lanes of traffic and struck a fence. Police said the teen was not hurt, but was ciged for the crash. Her name was not released by police.

A heating and cooling equipment manufacturer in Mercer County has released information about when they’ll lay off workers. The first round of layoffs at Nortek Global HVAC, LLC are expected to begin February 28th. A second layoff date is slated for October 31st of this year. Nortek announced in May 2018 that it planned to cease production at its Mercer, Pennsylvania plant to continue its efforts to improve efficiencies and reduce excess capacity. About 110 workers will be affected.

Triple-A East Central latest gas price report shows prices fell six cents in Western Pennsylvania and are now averaging 2.46 a gallon. Prices were down nine cents last week. In New Castle drivers are paying 2.23 while in Sharon the average price is higher at 2.37 a gallon. The national average sits at 2.25 a gallon and that’s the lowest price at the start of the new year in the last three years.

The annual Pennsylvania Farm Show butter sculpture is revealed.  This year’s showpiece features an athlete, a dairy farmer, a doctor, a firefighter, and a soldier all wearing a superhero cape.  Sculptors Jim Victor and Marie Pelton made the display using one-thousand pounds of butter.  The 103rd Pennsylvania Farm Show begins Saturday.

A Wilkinsburg man faces child pornography charges as part of a multi-state investigation conducted by the FBI.  Court records show that authorities arrested 25-year-old Jason Harris Junior last month at his home on Wright Street.  Investigators say they seized several devices that contained more than 170 images of child pornography.  Harris is currently being detained in the Allegheny County Jail ahead of a hearing next week.

Governor Tom Wolf’s second inauguration will have a Philly sound.  The Governor’s inaugural celebration committee announced Thursday Philadelphia-based band The Roots will be performing at Wolf and John Fetterman’s January 15th event.  The celebration is set for the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg.