TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR NOVEMBER 2ND, 2022

The Pennsylvania State Supreme Court unanimously said election officials cannot count votes from mail-in or absentee ballots that lack accurate, handwritten dates on their return envelopes. The court directed county boards of elections to “segregate and preserve” those ballots. The justices split 3-3 on whether making the envelope dates mandatory under state law would violate provisions of the U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1964, which states that immaterial errors or omissions should not be used to prevent voting.

A driver and a child are hospitalized following a crash in Union Township yesterday.  Police say the driver fled from an attempted traffic stop in New Castle, leading to the accident.  Authorities report the juvenile was flown to UPMC Children’s Hospital.  Police say both individuals were found ejected from the vehicle.

State Police in Butler County report a Karns city woman was killed following a two vehicle accident in Center Township. Police report 27 year old Kaitlin Selfridge was northbound on route 38 when she crossed the center line and struck a vehicle operated by 20 year old Jasmyne Laurent of West Sunbury. Selfridge was pronounced dead at the scene. Laurent was transported to Butler Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Candidates for Pennsylvania governor are continuing campaign efforts in the final run up to Election Day.  Attorney General, and Democratic candidate, Josh Shapiro, addressed voters on Pittsburgh’s North Shore yesterday.  Republican state Senator Doug Mastriano spent yesterday in State College, and is scheduled to appear at a rally featuring Ben Carson in Pittsburgh this evening.  A recent Muhlenberg College poll has Shapiro ahead of Mastriano by around 14 points.

A child is hurt following a pedestrian crash in Beaver County.  The accident was reported around 6:00 p.m. yesterday on Grand Avenue in Aliquippa.  The juvenile was flown to a Pittsburgh hospital, according to county dispatchers.  The condition of the child has not yet been released.

A Sharon man has been charged with possessing child pornography. 37 year old Rigoberto Naverrete was charged with allegedly having 20 images of child pornography, and facing 20 counts. He was also charged with criminal use of a communication facility, or use of a cell phone to commit a crime. WFMJ-TV reports the charges were handed down this past Friday. He was booked into the Mercer County jail. Bond was set at 100 thousand dollars.

Ninth District State Representative Chris Sainato announced a 50 thousand dollar state grant will fund a new roof for the New Castle Playhouse. Sainato said the funding from the Department of Community and Economic Development will support a much-needed renovation. The total project cost of $75,000 will be supplemented by internal donations.

The State Department of Revenue says the state collected $3.1 billion in General Fund revenue last month which was 6.4 percent more than expected while the $12.9 billion collected so far this fiscal year is 3.1 percent above estimate. The department also reports that sales tax receipts and revenue from the personal income tax and the corporate tax was higher than anticipated, while revenue from the inheritance tax and realty transfer tax was below estimate

State Police have announced renewed efforts to collect demographic data on traffic stops. The move comes after a journalism outlet noticed the department had stopped collecting the information without explanation or public notice.  The site Spotlight PA says more than 85 percent of  Pennsylvania State Police stations failed to collect the data after an agency-wide pledge to do so.  Troopers at some stations reported they didn’t realize they had to record the information on stops that resulted in only a verbal warning, which may have added up to 20 percent of all stops made last year.