TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR MAY 21ST, 2020

Pennsylvania health officials are reporting more cases of COVID-19 in the state. Officials say there were about 746 new cases reported yesterday, and the total is over 64-thousand-400. Around 143 deaths were also reported yesterday, and the death toll sits at nearly 48-hundred. Lawrence County stayed at 73 positive cases and eight deaths on Wednesday.

The search for a missing boy on the Ohio River is over.  Ambridge police say divers recovered the body of the eleven-year-old child yesterday near the city’s sewage treatment plant.  The boy went missing Monday after falling into the water after he and some friends rode their bikes to the river.  The child has not yet been publicly identified.

No injuries were reported following a one vehicle accident in Neshannock Township. According to police, Pamila Davis of Slippery Rock struck a curb at First Choice Credit Union, the accelerated and struck the side of the building. The accident took place on Tuesday night.

When Beaver County officially moves into the yellow phase of reopening tomorrow, the county courthouse also will reopen with no restrictions. The Ellwood City Ledger reports Visitors to the courthouse will be asked to wear a mask, but it is not a requirement. Commissioner Chairman Daniel Camp said the decision is directly related to Wolf’s decision to move the county from the “red” to “yellow” phase.

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald says the state should give more consideration to reopening businesses like gyms, barber shops, and even restaurants when a county reaches the Governor’s yellow reopening phase.  Fitzgerald says many of these businesses have very sound plans to keep both customers and employees safe.  Allegheny County’s health director says it’s too soon to see if the county is experiencing a spike in cases since moving into the yellow phase less than a week ago.

The Big Butler Fair is being canceled for the first time since the Civil War.  Fair organizers say concerns about the spread of COVID-19 have forced them to start planning for next year.  The Big Butler Fair was scheduled to open for the 165th year on July Third.

Marburger Farm Dairy is going to receive roughly 79-grand as part of the Farmers to Families Food Box Program.  The Evans City dairy farm will use that money from the U-S-D-A to give surplus milk and other dairy products to food banks and other non-profit organizations across P-A who put together food boxes for families in need.  Around 50-million of the one-point-two billion dollars of federal funding allocated for the program is being used across P-A.

There will soon be a new superintendent on the job for Mars Area School District.  The school board unanimously voted to approve a five-year contract for Doctor Mark Gross that will begin on July 1st.  Gross had previously worked with the Hempfield Area School District as its Assistant Superintendent for Secondary Education.  A meet-and-greet with Gross is expected to be scheduled for families in the district once social distancing guidelines are relaxed.

The longtime president of California University of Pennsylvania is announcing her retirement.  Geraldine Jones has spent 46-years at Cal-U and had served as the seventh president in the university’s history.  Jones says her retirement will be effective January 29th of next year.

Pennsylvania residents who receive SNAP benefits will soon be able to use them online.  The US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue says that Pennsylvania is one of 13 states where using food stamps are permitted online.  It’s a pilot program that lasts two years with merchants like Amazon and Walmart.  Officials say 18 states are already participating in the program.