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Government & Politics
2:51 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

No ID Needed For PA Voters in May Primary

Pennsylvania voters will not be required to show photo identification in the May 21 primary election under an agreement signed Thursday by both sides in a pending lawsuit.

Lawyers representing the Corbett administration and plaintiffs who are challenging the constitutionality of the voter ID law in state Commonwealth Court agreed that the law won't be enforced as voters choose nominees for judicial and municipal offices.

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Government & Politics
2:32 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Orie Melvin Case Sent to the Jury

The jury in the case against Joan Orie Melvin heard closing arguments Friday.
Credit pacourts.us

90.5 WESA's Emily Farah reports on closing arguments for sisters and co-defendants Joan Orie Melvin and Janine Orie.

Attorneys for suspended Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin and her sister Janine Orie made their closing arguments to a jury

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Government & Politics
2:27 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

No ID Needed For PA Voters in May Primary

Pennsylvania voters will not be required to show photo identification in the May 21 primary election under an agreement signed Thursday by both sides in a pending lawsuit.

Lawyers representing the Corbett administration and plaintiffs who are challenging the constitutionality of the voter ID law in state Commonwealth Court agreed that the law won't be enforced as voters choose nominees for judicial and municipal offices.

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Economy & Business
2:22 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

PNC's Rohr Steps Down, Demchak to Replace

PNC announces big changes at the top.
Credit Alex Blanck/Flickr

PNC Financial Services Group President William Demchak will replace Chairman and CEO James Rohr who is set to step down in April after nearly 13 years as head of southwestern Pennsylvania's largest bank.

The 64-year-old Rohr will step down at the annual shareholder's meeting April 23, but will remain executive chairman for a year while the bank transitions to Demchak's leadership.

The 50-year-old Demchak was hired by PNC as chief financial officer in 2002, when he left JPMorgan Chase. Since then, he's become PNC's senior vice chairman in 2009 and president last April.

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Transportation
2:18 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

AAA Kicks Off “FIX PA ROADS” Campaign

Pennsylvania AAA Clubs are launching a statewide public service outdoor advertising campaign to call attention to the state’s crumbling roads and unsafe bridges.

AAA East Central today announced a campaign to urge state officials to boost funding for the state’s ailing transportation system.

According to Brian Newbacher of AAA East Central, transportation investment has been under-funded in Pennsylvania for decades, and will take some years to fix.

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Education & Learning
2:10 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Darwin Day Speaker Says Public Misunderstands Evolution

Duquesne University continues its annual exploration of Darwin's findings
Credit Duquesne University

Misconceptions people have of evolution lead them to believe males are the workers in every species and that some species are more advanced than others.

That’s according to Dr. Marlene Zuk, professor of ecology at the University of Minnesota and tonight's speaker at Duquesne University’s annual Darwin Day lecture.

She said people often see progressive evolutionary charts in biology books, ones where fish evolve into reptiles, then reptiles to mammals.

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Health
2:06 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Pitt Conference Examine Modern-Day Applications of Traditional Medicine

Traditional health solutions like these herbs are the focus of a two-day conference in Pittsburgh.
Credit jimmiehomeschoolmom/Flickr

A conference on traditional Chinese medicine in contemporary contexts at the University of Pittsburgh Friday will examine traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) as a concurrent approach to treating illness. The event is organized by the husband and wife research team of Professor Andrew Strathern and Dr. Pamela J. Stewart.

The two-day conference is rooted in the growing field of medical anthropology, a study of health-related beliefs and behaviors. Strather said modern medicine can avail itself of the nearly 2,000 years of historical knowledge that TCM encompasses.

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Government & Politics
2:01 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

PA Atty. Gen. Spikes Lottery Deal

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane says Corbett administration's deal to privatize the Lottery violates the state's constitution.
Credit Capitol Media Services

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane has rejected the proposed Lottery contract with Camelot Global Services saying it violates the Pennsylvania Constitution.  Further, the AG says the contract oversteps the statutes that govern gambling when it proposes the expansion of the lottery to include keno.

The AG’s office is required to review state contracts for ‘form and legality.’ It has sent a memo to the Chief Counsel for the Department of Revenue outlining the reasons for the rejection of the contract. 

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Corrections, law enforcement
1:12 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Alternative Sentencing Effective in Pennsylvania, but Underutilized

The Pennsylvania Department of Corrections found that the State Intermediate Punishment, or SIP Program helps reduce recidivism and saves the state money. But a recent report from the DOC found that from 2010 through 2012, the program was not used to its full potential, especially in larger counties.

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Government & Politics
3:20 am
Fri February 15, 2013

AAA Kicks Off “FIX PA ROADS” Campaign

Pennsylvania AAA Clubs are launching a statewide public service outdoor advertising campaign to call attention to the state’s crumbling roads and unsafe bridges.

AAA East Central today announced a campaign to urge state officials to boost funding for the state’s ailing transportation system.

According to Brian Newbacher of AAA East Central, transportation investment has been under-funded in Pennsylvania for decades, and will take some years to fix.

Read more
Science & Technology
9:00 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Darwin Day Speaker Says Public Misunderstands Evolution

Misconceptions people have of evolution lead them to believe males are the workers in every species and that some species are more advanced than others.

That’s according to Dr. Marlene Zuk, professor of ecology at the University of Minnesota and tonight's speaker at Duquesne University’s annual Darwin Day lecture.

She said people often see progressive evolutionary charts in biology books, ones where fish evolve into reptiles, then reptiles to mammals.

Read more
Health
8:29 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Pitt Conference Examine Modern-Day Applications of Traditional Medicine

A conference on traditional Chinese medicine in contemporary contexts at the University of Pittsburgh Friday will examine traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) as a concurrent approach to treating illness. The event is organized by the husband and wife research team of Professor Andrew Strathern and Dr. Pamela J. Stewart.

The two-day conference is rooted in the growing field of medical anthropology, a study of health-related beliefs and behaviors. Strather said modern medicine can avail itself of the nearly 2,000 years of historical knowledge that TCM encompasses.

Read more
Government & Politics
7:06 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

PA Atty. Gen. Spikes Lottery Deal

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane has rejected the proposed Lottery contract with Camelot Global Services saying it violates the Pennsylvania Constitution.  Further, the AG says the contract oversteps the statutes that govern gambling when it proposes the expansion of the lottery to include keno.

The AG’s office is required to review state contracts for ‘form and legality.’ It has sent a memo to the Chief Counsel for the Department of Revenue outlining the reasons for the rejection of the contract. 

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Government & Politics
4:20 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Pittsburgh Settles G20 Suit for $400,000

On behalf of 13 litigants, the ACLU has reached a $400,000 settlement with the city of Pittsburgh for claims related to arrests made during the 2009 Pittsburgh G20 summit. 

The 13 individuals, categorized by the ACLU as “demonstrators, observers, and passersby” were among about 100 people taken into custody after police broke up a rally at Schenley Plaza in Oakland few hours after the summit of world leaders concluded. 

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Economy & Business
1:41 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Heinz to be Acquired by Berkshire Hathaway Group

http://2cccd5dfe1965e26adf6-26c50ce30a6867b5a67335a93e186605.r53.cf1.rackcdn.com/Web Heinz.wav

Pittsburgh-based H.J. Heinz Co. has agreed to a $28 billion deal to be acquired by an investment consortium which includes billionaire investor Warren Buffet. If approved, this will be the largest acquisition ever in the food industry.

The Heinz Board of Directors unanimously approved the acquisition by Berkshire Hathaway and 3G Capital. Under the agreement, Heinz shareholders will receive $72.50 in cash for each share of common stock they own, a 20 percent premium.

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Economy & Business
1:36 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

US Airways, American Boards OK $11B Merger

American Airlines and US Airways say they have agreed to merge in an $11 billion deal that would create the world's biggest airline. The combined carrier will be called American Airlines but run by US Airways CEO Doug Parker.

The combined network will serve 8 locations across the Pennsylvania-Delaware region—Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Scranton, Harrisburg, State College, Allentown-Lehigh, Erie and Williamsport, with 558 daily departures.  Pittsburgh will have 60 flights to 13 destinations.

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Economy & Business
12:31 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

US Airways, American Boards Approve Merger

Update at 6:50 a.m. ET, Feb. 14: News Is Confirmed.

Statements confirming the news that directors of US Airways and American Airlines have agreed to merge the airlines have now been released by both companies.

American says:

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Government & Politics
2:24 am
Thu February 14, 2013

NETL Welcomes Department of Energy Official to Pittsburgh Facility

The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is a collection of buildings on a large campus just south of Pittsburgh. The work done there includes research and development on energy and the environment. On Wednesday, the Acting Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy for the Department of Energy, Christopher Smith, visited the labs. A lot of research surrounds technologies for developing coal and natural gas, both of which draw much criticism from environmental groups. Smith said NETL works to further the goal of Energy Secretary Steven Chu.

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Government & Politics
8:20 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

Orie Melvin Defense Rests Without Justice Taking Stand

Suspended Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin has opted not to testify at her campaign corruption trial.

As a result, the defense has rested and the jury will return Friday for closing arguments and legal instructions before they begin deliberating. The jury must decide whether the justice and her sister and aide, Janine Orie, conspired to misuse state-paid employees for campaign work when Melvin, then a Superior Court judge, ran for the Supreme Court in 2003 and 2009.

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Government & Politics
7:59 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

Pittsburgh Plans to Buy Hovercraft, Beef Up River Rescue Fleet

Pittsburgh leaders plan to use a federal grant to buy a new hovercraft and outfit the city's two main rescue boats with new motors. City Council gave preliminary approval to the necessary legislation on Wednesday.

Pittsburgh Emergency Management Deputy Director Ray DeMichiei said the hovercraft, which uses a cushion of air to float inches above water or land, is designed to reach places that traditional boats can't, such as ice and shallow water.

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Environment & Energy
5:42 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

Model Ordinance to Streamline Solar Panels Installation Offered to PA Municipalities

A model ordinance and zoning code for solar power installation on homes and small businesses, which was one year in the making, is now available for all municipalities to consider with the hope that it will lower barriers residents and businesses face when looking to install new systems. The SunShot Rooftop Challenge initiative, funded by the US Department of Energy and coordinated by PennFuture, involved 24 local governments in Allegheny and Beaver counties including Upper Saint Clair, Pittsburgh, and Monaca.

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Transportation
5:26 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

Pennsylvania Lawmakers Still Looking for More Transportation Money

Governor Tom Corbett’s plan new transportation would generate more than $5 billion over a five year period, however, some say the budget might not be enough to fix Pennsylvania’s transit woes. The plan is projected to yield less money than the governor’s transportation funding advisory commission said would be necessary to keep up with the needs of the state’s ailing infrastructure.

Pennsylvania senate Transportation Committee chairman John Rafferty is leading the effort to draft legislation on the issue. He said he’s looking for something north of that.

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Government & Politics
1:11 pm
Sun February 10, 2013

Paterno Family Refutes Freeh Report Accusations

The family of late Penn State football coach Joe Paterno has released a report refuting some of the findings of the university’s internal investigation last summer, which alleged that Paterno covered up the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal.

The document released Sunday morning by the firm King & Spalding says “[t]here is no evidence that Joe Paterno deliberately covered up known incidents of child molestation by Jerry Sandusky to protect Penn State football or for any other reason.”

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Education & Learning
2:44 pm
Sat February 9, 2013

Faculty Members to Vote on PA State System Pact

A proposed four-year contract covering 5,500 faculty members at Pennsylvania's state-owned universities is headed for a ratification vote by the union rank and file.

The leadership body of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties endorsed the contract agreement Friday at a meeting in Gettysburg. Union spokeswoman Lauren Gutshall says the tally was nearly unanimous.

The faculty members of the 14 universities in the State System of Higher Education have worked without a contract since June 2011.

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Environment & Energy
2:39 pm
Sat February 9, 2013

Winter Storm Batters Northeast; 500,000 Without Power

A storm that forecasters warned could be a blizzard for the history books, with a potential for up to 3 feet of snow, clobbered the New York-to-Boston corridor on Friday, grounding flights, sending office workers home early and knocking out power to half a million customers across the Northeast.

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