TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR APRIL 28TH, 2021

State Police in Mercer County report a two vehicle accident yesterday morning in Pine Township. According to police 24 year old Mykel McCool of Franklin was southbound on George Junior Road when he crossed the center line and struck a vehicle head on operated by 37 year old Bryan Egan of Sewickly. Both drivers were taken to Grove City Medical Center for treatment. The roadway was closed for several hours.

COVID-19 cases are continuing to rise throughout the state. Health officials say yesterday, the state total saw an increase of more than 33-hundred new cases, pushing it over one-million-139-thousand. Pennsylvania has now surpassed 26-thousand deaths related to the virus since the pandemic started as 84 new deaths were added to the death toll yesterday. Lawrence County has 7,212 cases and 203 deaths. Mercer County has 9,083 cases and 253 fatalites.

A Jacksonville Florida man faces charges following a traffic accident earlier this month in Mercer County. According to State Police 27 year old Marques Allen was involved in an accident on Interstate 79 in Lake Township back on April 15th. Allen faces charges of DUI along with endangering the welfare of a child, as a 17 year old male was in the vehicle at the time of the crash. No injuries were reported.

Pennsylvania is working towards herd immunity. State health officials say that 48-percent of Pennsylvanians have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. The state is also ranked 10th in the nation by the CDC for percent of the population with at least one dose. State health officials say they’re aiming to have 80-percent of Pennsylvanians vaccinated to reach herd immunity.

Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education has posted a large plan to consolidate California, Clarion and Edinboro universities for public comment.  Under the proposal, all three state-owned universities would become one, single institution with three separate campuses by the start of Fall 2022.  State leaders say the idea will help rescue the schools financially as they deal with large enrollment declines.  The public has 60 days to weigh in on the proposal.

Pennsylvania is aligning its face mask guidelines for fully vaccinated individuals with the CDC’s recommendations. State health officials say in accordance to the updated CDC guidelines, people who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear a mask when outdoors, except when in crowded spaces. Those who are not vaccinated still need to wear a mask in most situations. Pennsylvanians can read more about the updated guidelines at cdc-dot-gov.

Lawmakers are looking to change the process of how a lieutenant governor is chosen. Yesterday, the state Senate passed a proposed constitutional amendment that would modify the process to resemble how a presidential candidate chooses their vice president. Those running for governor would choose their own lieutenant governor with approval from their political parties instead of Pennsylvania voters. The proposal is now heading to the state House for consideration.

A man from Pittsburgh is going to be spending a lot of time behind bars for possessing child pornography.  Krent Jeffrey Haight of Mount Washington was sentenced to serve ten years in federal prison yesterday.  He pleaded guilty last December to possessing more than 15-hundred images and videos depicting the sexual exploitation of minors on a computer.  Officials say Haight is a registered sex offender from two prior convictions of sex offenses including child porn possession.

P-A’s new Move Over law is officially in effect.  The law builds on the Steer Clear law to protect workers in construction zones.  Now, if a driver can’t safely move over to avoid workers, emergency responders, or a disabled vehicle, they must drop 20-miles-per-hour below the posted speed limit.