TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR FEBRUARY 24TH, 2022

A Farrell man is being held in the Trumbull County Jail on a warrant for attempted murder.WFMJ-TV reports  Hubbard Township Police arrested 29-year-old Malcolm Hailstock Tuesday afternoon.  Officers pulled over Hailstock’s truck along Masury Road and arrested him at gunpoint. According to court records, police charged Hailstock with attempted murder, aggravated assault, and a firearms charge for an incident in Farrell on Saturday.

A New Castle man was sentenced to 6-18 months in prison after pleading guilty to aggravated assault charges. The Ellwood City Ledger reports 55 year old Michael Caccia was one of two city residents charged with attempted criminal homicide and aggravated assault, along with Cassie Marie Lutz. The incident took place in September of 2021 in Shenango Township. Police were called to a home on Pennsylvania Avenue where two men were assaulted. Lutz is still awaiting trial.

Governor, Tom Wolf announced on Wednesday that the commonwealth has reached a new COVID-19 vaccine milestone with 95% of residents aged 18 and over receiving at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Last week, the Pennsylvania Department of Health updated its post-vaccination data, which continues to show that vaccines are effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death. Governor Wolf advised Pennsylvanians that if they have not received their second dose or booster dose yet and are eligible to do so to visit their nearest vaccine provider.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court says it has determined where congressional District boundaries will be ahead of the May 17th primary.  On Wednesday, the Court announced they had chosen a map proposed by a group of Democrats with eight Republican-leaning Districts, six Democratic-leaning Districts, and three toss-ups.  The new map also keeps the city of Pittsburgh and all of Bucks County in one District.  Based on the new District lines, candidates can begin gathering signatures this Friday through March 15th to be placed on the ballot.

Sheetz is looking to fill thousands of positions in the coming months.  The Altoona-based convenience store chain this week has announced plans to host a series of hiring events in March.  The company with stores in Pennsylvania and five other states says that they have more than 35-hundred positions to fill with starting wages of 15-dollars-and-50-cents per hour.  More info is available online at jobs.sheetz.com.

During this Highway Safety Law Awareness Week, PennDOT’s Acting Executive Deputy Secretary says every driver can do something about the rise in traffic-related fatalities in the state.  Melissa Batula says in a statement that safety on the roadways is everyone’s responsibility. According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, traffic deaths in Pennsylvania were up ten-percent in the first nine months of 2021 from where they were in 2020. Batula says 94-percent of unbelted occupants who were killed in 2020 could have survived if they had a seatbelt on.  Other major factors include distracted and aggressive driving, especially speeding.  

A group called Keystone Farm Future wants to accelerate local beef production in Pennsylvania. The group wants to change the marketing model for producing and selling beef from a “grow and hope” method, where cattle are raised then a good price is “hoped for” at the market. Instead, they believe arranging for purchase orders, having the product sold first, is the key to increasing production. The group believes dairy farms are also a potentially different market for raising cattle. They believe the model also could put Pennsylvania at the forefront of a revolution for beef that could be utilized across the country.

Questions are being raised about State Senator Doug Mastriano’s campaign spending with just months before the primary. The state senator now is reporting nearly twice as much campaign funding than he’d previously reported before the end of 2021.  As of Tuesday’s finance statement deadline, the Republican candidate for governor says he has just over a million dollars in his campaign account, compared to the 550-thousand he reported just two months ago.  Additionally, Mastriano reportedly spent more than 215-thousand dollars, much more than the just under 15-thousand that was initially reported in his 2021 filing.

The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association has announced it is leaving Hersheypark Stadium after hosting state high school football championships for nearly 25 years.  A news statement on Wednesday announced that Cumberland Valley High School in Mechanicsburg will become the host of state’s high school championships in football, soccer and field hockey for the next four seasons.