TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR SEPTEMBER 7TH, 2021

The Wolf Administration’s mask mandate for schools is taking effect today. Last week, the governor announced that masks will be required in all k through 12 schools in the state for all students, teachers and staff while indoors until the order is terminated. The governor said he received an outpouring of messages from parents asking them to protect all children by masking in schools. However, a small group of protesters gathered outside the state capitol yesterday to protest the mandate.

A Lawrence County man is facing multiple charges after being arrested for assaulting a woman and a police officer.  New Castle Police confirmed yesterday that 39-year-old Marquent Whetzel is charged with aggravated assault, possession with intent to distribute, terroristic threats, resisting arrest, and harassment.  Officials say Whetzel struck a woman with a cast iron pan during a domestic argument on Sunday and spit in an officer’s face while being apprehended.  Police say they found methamphetamine and heroin on Whetzel during his arrest.

The CDC says Pittsburgh area residents who participated in public events over Labor Day should get tested for COVID-19.  The CDC issued the alert yesterday after a holiday weekend with nice weather that saw people attend college football games and other activities with large crowds.  The CDC says an unvaccinated person who was out this weekend should get a COVID-19 test within the next three days.

Wilmington’s high school football game with Oil City scheduled for Friday has been canceled due to a COVID-19 case with the Oil City team. The Greyhounds who had a bye last week won’t play now until September 18 at Greenville.

Pennsylvanians are no longer able to receive extended an increased federal unemployment benefits. The programs enacted because of the pandemic included the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and the additional three-hundred-dollars per week for claimants. All these programs ended on Saturday, but state officials say there are still some resources available for those who need it. This includes the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and more.

Operators of a private prison in Youngstown are calling Monday’s death of an inmate an apparent suicide.  Officials with the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center say the prisoner was found hanging in their cell at around 5:30 a.m.  They were rushed to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead about half-an-hour later.  The prisoner’s name has not been released.  Mahoning County officials are investigating the incident.

State officials are estimating that hundreds of bridges across the state will need to be inspected after being hit by the remnants of Hurricane Ida. The Wolf Administration says approximately eight-hundred bridges will need post-flood inspections. They added that they will work to complete those inspections as quickly as possible and bridge inspectors and other resources will be deployed from lesser impacted areas to the most impacted areas.

State Police in Mercer County say a 61-year-old Butler County woman was driving an SUV along Route 58 just east of Grove City Thursday evening when she struck a bear crossing the road. The driver wasn’t injured.  Police didn’t say what happened to the bear.

COVID-19 cases are continuing to rise throughout the state. Yesterday, the state added 25-hundred new cases to the state total, pushing it over one-million-322-thousand. Three new deaths related to the virus were added to the death toll, which is at 28-thousand-398.