TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR JULY 26TH, 2022

Three people were flown to area hospitals following a two vehicle accident in Findley Township yesterday afternoon. State Police in Mercer County report 37 year old Luke McGee of Butler was traveling on the on ramp from Interstate 80 east to Interstate 79 south when he lost control of his vehicle and his camper trailer and traveled through both southbound lanes of 79 and struck a vehicle operated by 66 year old Thomas Nestor of Coraopolis. The impact caused Nestor’s vehicle to roll over multiple times. McGee’s vehicle then struck several concrete pillars. McGee was flown to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital with serious injuries. Nestor along with a passenger, 66 year old Lisa Nestor were flown to St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Youngstown. The southbound lanes were closed for about eight hours.

Two men are facing charges after a Monday raid in Beaver County.  Police serving a search warrant on an apartment in Beaver Falls reportedly discovered crack cocaine, powder cocaine, oxycodone pills, marijuana, digital scales, rifle ammunition and three firearms…two of which show as having been stolen.  Robert Carpenter and Chonte Law were taken into custody on drug and weapons charges.

Triple-A reports that gas prices continue to decline in Western Pennsylvania.  The average price of a gallon of regular fuel is now four-dollars-and-62-cents.  That’s down 13-cents from a week ago and down 37-cents in the last month. In New Castle drivers are paying 4.52 a gallon while the average price in Mercer County is at 4.51 a gallon.

For the first time in over 10 years, the State of Pennsylvania is considering increasing the price for a state fishing license. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission will hold a meeting Monday evening to hear public comment on the potential price hike.  If approved, fishing licenses for Pennsylvania residents would go from 21-dollars to 23-50. The commission said the changes would provide roughly two-and-a-half million dollars more annually.

FedEx’s yet to open distribution center in Mercer County could bring more economic development to the area.  Penn Northwest Development Corporation officials say having a Fortune 50 company operating there and improvements planned for I-80 near exit 15 has other businesses considering the area.  The distribution center is currently being built on a 65-acre site on Route 18.  It’s expected to open in Hermitage in October of next year.

State officials say the new 9-8-8 Suicide Prevention Lifeline will provide Pennsylvanians with an easier way to access mental health support during a crisis. Acting Secretary of  Human Services Meg Snead says progress has been made, especially after COVID, in recognizing how essential mental health is to  overall well-being and quality of life. She says residents who use the line will be patched into professionals at one of 13 call centers throughout the state. Residents also will still be able to use the old 1-800 number to call for mental health crisis responders.

Twenty-seven drawings have come and gone with no jackpot winner in the Mega Millions lottery game.  With no winner in the most recent drawing, lottery players tonight will have a chance at winning the estimated top prize of 810-million dollars.  That jackpot is the 4th largest lottery jackpot in U.S. history. 

The University Of Pittsburgh is one of four schools getting additional funding from Governor Tom Wolfe.  The one-time,  40-million dollar subsidy comes from stimulus money under the control of the governor.  The additional cash represents an increase of five percent in annual state dollars for the school.  Penn State, Lincoln, and Temple are also set to receive the funding boost.

Governor Tom Wolf says the minimum wage in Pennsylvania needs to be increased.  Governor Wolf posted to social media yesterday that the state’s minimum wage of seven-dollars and 25-cents is now 13-years-old.  He says that wage has less than three-fourths of the buying power it had when it was enacted.