A NEW NOTIFICAOIN SYSTEM ON THE HORIZON

Lycoming County continues to move ahead in the information age.  County Commissioners yesterday approved a one year $24,995 dollar contract with a company which will set up an emergency alert system for county residents. The system will enable county residents to sign up for alerts for local disasters and for situations such as last minute polling changes or notifications about available hunting licenses.   Officials say the new system is an online alert program that community members can tailor by requesting alerts be sent to their computer.  The first year of the system will be paid for through 911 Center fees.  A small scale roll-out is expected on April 1st of next year.

MAYOR WANTS TO LOWER PROJECTED TAX INCREASE

The Williamsport Sun Gazette reported this morning that Williamsport Mayor Gabriel Campana will adjust the tax increase in his proposed budget from .35 mills down to .25 mills.  The paper reports that Campana has been working with the county on financial help for the cost of the records management system used by city police and the mayor says that the county will offer up a $100,000 dollar grant to help with that system.  City council will have two budget work sessions next week on Monday and Wednesday, both set for 7pm.

 ANOTHER FEDERAL DRUG SENTENCING

Another member of a large scale drug ring was sentenced in Federal Court in Williamsport yesterday.  27 year old Corey Hughes who entered a guilty plea in August to a count of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 700-11,000 grams of cocaine was sentenced to 100 months in federal prison.  Hughes apologized in the courtroom for his actions and said he would serve his sentence and become a productive member of society afterwards.  He was part of a group of 19 based out of Williamsport who would provide drugs to customers along the Interstate 80 corridor between Bloomsburg and Williamsport. 

WILLIAMSPORT MAN’S SENTENCE LENGTHENED

A Williamsport man yesterday had his state prison term sentence lengthened after a probation violation hearing in Lycoming County.  Khalil Payne was sentenced earlier this week to 1 to 7 years in state prison for the molestation of a 6 year old girl in the city.  Following the hearing yesterday, he was hit with a sentence of one to three years which will run consecutive with his current sentence. That means he will spend 2 to 10 years in state prison. Payne pleaded guilty to the other charges earlier this year.

2 TEENS INJURED IN CRASH

An 18 year old teen was sent to Williamsport Regional Medical Center with a minor injury and another teen with a possible injury following a two vehicle crash in Loyalsock Township on Wednesday. The crash occurred are the intersection of Northway Road and East Third Street as vehicles driven by 18 year old Tiffany Bartholomew of South Williamsport and 29 year old Mark Capellazo of Williamsport collided as Capellazo’s vehicle struck Bartholomew’s car as she attempted to turn at the light at the intersection.  Bartholomew and a 17 year old passenger were transported to the hospital. Their conditions not released.  No one else was hurt.

MAN ARESTED FOR ASSAULT IN SHAMOKIN

A Shamokin man was arrested yesterday after allegedly pistol whipping another man and threatening to kill him.  30 year old James Moore allegedly got into an argument with an unidentified man on Rock Street in Shamokin yesterday afternoon.  When they arrived, they found the alleged victim bleeding from the side of the head.  They recovered a 9 mm handgun and were led to Moore after questioning.  He was arraigned on counts of aggravated assault and carrying a firearm without a license as well as misdemeanor counts, arraigned and jailed in Snyder County Prison in lieu of $30,000 bail. 

GRANT MONEY FOR LOCAL HOSPITAL EXPANSION

It’s $5 million dollars in state money to help the expansion at a Lycoming County Hospital.  State Senator Gene Yaw and State Representative Garth Everett announced the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program grant this week for the Muncy Valley Hospital.  The hospital is undergoing a $14.2 million dollar renovation and expansion project which will add 5,500 square feet and renovate another 11,000 square feet.  Included in the work is the emergency room as well as other parts of the hospital. 

WORK BEGINS NEXT WEEK

Traffic will be slow going next week on a section of Route 973 as well as Bloomingrove Road in Hepburn and Eldred Townships.  A contractor will undergo a $245,000 dollar paving and embankment project there in which they will remove debris and make concrete repairs on the Route 973 Bridge spanning Mill Creek in Hepburn Township.  There will be single lane closures during daylight hours with flaggers providing traffic control.  The work is expected to be complete in late December. 

NEW PRESIDENT APPOINTED AT HOPE ENTERPRISES

Hope Enterprises in Williamsport has a new president.  The Hope board of directors has appointed Robert Labatch to lead the organization. Labatch previously was the vice president for day programs and has a background in social work.  Labatch says he hopes to help continue to integrated Hope’s clients into the community, provide individualized experiences for them and sustain community support. He will replace Jim Campbell who after 17 years leading the organization, will retire at the end of the year.