TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR JULY 11TH, 2022

KDKA-TV is reporting a small plane crashed after it lost power in Little Beaver Township yesterday morning.  The crash occurred after a pilot took off from a private runway on his farm along Reno Lane. The pilot flew for around 10 minutes before the plane lost power. The plane then crashed into a nearby yard at the intersection of Clark Road and Kaufman Road. No one was injured, but the crash knocked out a few power lines.

Fire officials are reporting a partial building collapse in New Castle.  Crews were called to the Sankey Rec Center on Grant Street yesterday morning after bricks fell onto a nearby sidewalk.  Authorities say part of the roof and walls may have come down due to damage from a previous water leak.  No injuries were reported in the incident.

Pennsylvania senators have advanced a motion that would amend the state constitution. The amendment would allow language to say the state constitution does not guarantee the right to an abortion or to taxpayer-funded abortions. The state house gave its approval late Friday night after hours of debate. Senator Jay Costa says this amendment, which cannot be vetoed by the governor, could be on the ballot for voters to decide as early as May of next year.

A Commonwealth Court has granted a preliminary injunction that prohibits the state’s new carbon-pricing policy. The program is designed to make the Pennsylvania’s carbon-producing companies invest in carbon offset projects to balance their carbon footprint to combat climate change. The court ruled that Governor Tom Wolfe was trying to impose an unlawful tax with the new program. The Wolf administration has said it will appeal to the state Supreme Court.

Authorities in Beaver County say a one-year-old child has been found dead.  Police say the baby was reported unresponsive in a swimming pool around 7:40 yesterday evening.  The incident happened at a property along Braun Road in Chippewa Township.  The coroner’s office is working to determine an official cause and manner of death.

State Police in Mercer County have made an arrest following a robbery in Springfield Township last week. 39 year old Dustin Hilliard of Butler faces a number of charges after the robbery at the Kwik Fill Service Station near the intersection of State Route 258 and State Route 208 around 3:20 a.m. Wednesday. Hilliard allegedly went into the Kwik Fill with an unknown item wrapped in a dark cloth in his right hand and passed a note to the clerk demanding money. The investigation Is ongoing.

Governor Tom Wolf has vetoed a bill that would have permitted poll watchers to operate outside the counties where they live.  The poll watchers’ bill, sponsored by the current GOP gubernatorial nominee Sen. Doug Mastriano of Franklin County, would give candidates the right to have an additional observer and post them inside, close enough to see any canvassing and pre-canvassing. Wolf says the bill “undermines the integrity of our election process and encourages voter intimidation.”

The 45-billion-dollar 2022-23 state budget passed by the Pennsylvania General Assembly this past week will provide an historic cut to the Corporate Net Income (CNI) tax.  The CNI will be reduced to 8.99 percent next year and provide for an additional reduction in the CNI tax rate each year after until the rate reaches 4.99 percent by 2031.  Supporters say the cut will be a huge incentive for companies to locate their businesses in the commonwealth, in addition to possibly leading to higher wages and increased home values.

The newly-approved state budget’s tax code reform package offers benefits to veterans and small businesses. It includes caps on tax credits, deductions and deferrals for like-kind exchanges of property, and exempts Gold Star families from inheritance taxes. Also as part of the new budget, small businesses will be allowed to defer tax liabilities on gains from similar property exchanges.

Governor Tom Wolf has vetoed a transgender athlete bill. The bill would have required transgender athletes to play on the team matching their gender at birth. In a statement  Friday, the governor said, “Hate has no place in Pennsylvania, especially discrimination against already marginalized youth.”  The bill passed the Republican-controlled state legislature with supporters saying it was necessary for fairness in youth sports.