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Health
3:30 am
Mon July 21, 2014

How Texting Could Help Prevent Binge Drinking

Could text messaging help reduce binge drinking among young adults?

A new study from the University of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine suggests that this might be the case.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Binge drinking is considered to be five drinks or more for men and  four drinks or more for women generally over a two hour period.

Brian Suffoletto, lead author of the study and an assistance professor of emergency medicine at Pitt, said binge drinking in the U.S. has become an epidemic.

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Essential Pittsburgh
10:00 am
Sat July 19, 2014

Monday Rundown: Bringing 3D Printing to the Pittsburgh Masses

One of Piece Maker Technologies' 3D printers
Credit Piece Maker / Facebook

These topics air Monday July 21, 2014 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA.

Morning Edition host Josh Raulerson takes over the hosting chair for Paul Guggenheimer.

Mass Produced 3D Printers

In addition to purchasing all of your home repair needs Home Depot is now selling a desktop 3D printer. Locally, the Carnegie Library has offered sessions on the basics of how 3D printing works. It’s the latest innovation in bringing high-tech manufacturing to the masses. Joining us are Senior Librarian Wes Roberts who runs the Job and Career Education Center at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and Arden Rosenblatt, co-founder and CEO of Pittsburgh-based PieceMaker Technologies.

Summer Book Recommendations for Young Readers

According to the National Summer Learning Association, summer learning loss amounts to two month’s worth of reading for lower income students. Jonathan Auxier’s lifelong love of children’s books has turned into a career as an author writing for readers ages 8-14. We’ve asked him to recommend some books young readers will enjoy spending time with this summer.

Peace Corps

Since it’s creation over 50 years ago, the Peace Corps has been sending Americans overseas. Volunteers are sent to countries where their work can make a difference in the lives of others. However, applications for the Peace Corps are at an all time low. We’ll talk with recruiter for Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania, Karen Corey, about changes to the application process the Peace Corps is making in order to attract more volunteers.

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Government & Politics
4:11 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

Partial Veto of Projects Could Prompt Lawsuit

Lawmakers think the governor overreached when he vetoed not just parts of the state budget, but parts of another related piece of legislation, and House and Senate leaders are weighing their options to retaliate.

The state constitution allows the governor to partially veto “appropriations.” Lawmakers have interpreted that to mean specific sections of a state budget can be struck down by the governor.

Last week, Gov. Tom Corbett did that.

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Health
3:34 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

PA Hospitals Now Required to Perform 'Pulse Oximetry' Test on Newborns

In Pennsylvania, newborns are screened for more than 40 conditions, but only six of these screenings are mandatory according to Dr. Robert Cicco, the associate director of the neonatal intensive care unit at West Penn Hospital.

However, a new law will add a seventh condition to that list, requiring hospitals to screen babies for severe heart disease using a pulse oximetry test.

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Tuition Hike
12:24 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

Tuition Going Up 3.9 Percent at Pitt's Oakland Campus

Already cited by the U.S. Department of Education as having the highest tuition for a four-year public university or college, the University of Pittsburgh is raising its rates for the 2014-15 academic year.

The Pitt Board of Trustees Friday approved a $1.97 billion operating budget for the fiscal year that started July 1 — up $10 million from the just completed year.

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Environment & Energy
12:13 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

No New Gas Leases in State Parks and Forests Pending Court Decision

The Corbett administration has announced that no new natural gas leases will be issued under state parks and forest land while the case of PEDF v. Commonwealth progresses in court.

The decision is part of a settlement, which includes the continued funding of the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The suit was brought by the Pennsylvania Environmental Defense Foundation.

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Economy
10:50 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Pittsburgh's Cost of Living Below the 'Average' City

Pittsburgh’s cost of living was the third lowest among 14 peer cities, according to Pittsburgh TODAY.
Credit Flickr user josepha

More young people are moving to Pittsburgh while fewer are leaving, and Doug Heuck, the director of Pittsburgh TODAY, thinks this could be because of the region’s cost of living.

The nonprofit research organization found that in the first quarter of 2014, Pittsburgh’s cost of living was the third lowest among 14 peer cities – St. Louis and Charlotte had the lowest cost of living figures.

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90.5 WESA Celebrates
3:30 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Judy Bannon, Providing Cribs For Kids

Judy Bannon
Credit Debbi Casini Klein / 90.5 WESA

Read and listen to a story about Judy Bannon as part of a series honoring the individuals who make a difference in people’s lives: 90.5 WESA Celebrates People Making a Difference.

In 1992, research revealed that sleeping babies should be put on their backs instead of their stomachs. That discovery lead to a 50 percent drop in Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS.

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Special Programming
9:00 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Today on Q: A Revealing Interview with Tom Petty

Artist Tom Petty with a revealing interview on The Really Big Questions, with host Dean Olsher.
Credit Brian R. Grubb / Wikipedia

Essential Pittsburgh will take a summer break July 14th – 18th.  We’ll return with live shows on July 21st.

While we’re away enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon. At 8pm find out what drives human behavior on the program The Really Big Questions (TRBQ) with Dean Olsher. 

You can listen to past episodes of Essential Pittsburgh here or check out the podcast in iTunes.

Today at noon on Q, with Jian Ghomeshi: The first hour of the show is completely devoted to Jian’s revealing interview with Tom Petty, who talks about his new record, his extensive list of hit singles, and his views of modern music.

At 8pm, The Really Big Questions, hosted by Dean Olsher: What’s your story? Research confirms our minds depend on the story as the driving force for comprehending, deciphering, recalling and organizing our lives. Why do stories have such power over our beliefs and behaviors?

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Economy & Business
4:28 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Sen. Casey: Change Tax Code to Bring Jobs Back to PA

In the last 10 years, an estimated 2.4 million jobs have been shipped off shore by U.S. companies, according to U.S. Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), and he says the tax code not only allows it, but encourages it. 

“It’s almost as if the tax code says ‘take your jobs overseas and the code will help you do it,” said Casey.  “Unfortunately I’m not exaggerating.”

For that reason Casey is calling on the Senate Committee on Finance to move the Bring Jobs Home Act (S. 337) to the full Senate for debate and a vote.

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Beer Fest!
4:22 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Social Club for the Weekend of July 18th

We love our booze — ahem, our craft beers — here at the Social Club podcast, so of course the upcoming Beer Fest is one of Josh and Rachel’s favorite happenings this weekend. For the sober-minded, however, there’s no need to worry: this week’s events include yoga in the square, fashion trucks, and overlooked Pittsburgh barbecue. Listen in for why, “This is like, deliberate yoga, not just a weirdo running around the Square.”

This week’s happenings:

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Environment & Energy
4:03 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Commonwealth Court Throws Out Several Challenges to Act 13, Including ‘Doctor Gag Rule’

Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Court has upheld several sections of the state's oil and gas law, including a provision dealing with doctors' access to the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing.
Credit Lindsay Lazarski / WHYY

Pennsylvania doctors have nothing to worry about when it comes to the so-called “gag order” on chemical exposures from oil and gas drilling. That’s the message from the Commonwealth Court today in a much-anticipated ruling on provisions of the state’s two-year-old oil and gas law. The court issued the ruling after the Supreme Court passed on the controversy, sending it back to the lower court.

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Life of Learning
3:33 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

At Summer Seminar, Students Learn to Think Critically About Global Issues

For a small group of local teenagers, part of their summer has been spent learning to think critically about global issues. For the past two weeks the students have been learning Mandarin Chinese and Arabic, hearing speakers who work in the international community and learning from one another in the 2014 Summer Seminar of Global Issues.

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Economy & Business
2:43 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Coal Value Reassessment Rejected in Somerset County

Somerset County Commissioners have rejected a request from the Shade-Central City School District that could have forced the county to launch a multi-million dollar property reassessment process.

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Government & Politics
7:32 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Right-Sizing Supporters Eye House Reductions After Spring Fiasco

The past several weeks saw much action, but little advancement, on proposals to reduce the number of seats in the state House and Senate.

Pennsylvania has the largest full-time legislature in the country, with 253 state lawmakers. Efforts to thin the ranks ground to a halt over the past several weeks.

Opponents argue that membership cuts will lump more constituents in each district, leaving them with representation of lesser quality. They say a big shrink would concentrate legislative representation in more populated urban areas.

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Special Programming
9:00 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Today on Q: Comedian Maz Jobrani and the Challenges of Middle Eastern Entertainment

Comedian and actor Maz Jobrani tells Jian Ghomeshi the challenges of bringing those from the Middle East into entertainment.
Credit Gulzar Babaeva & Bobak Ha'Eri / Wikipedia

 Essential Pittsburgh will take a summer break July 14th – 18th. We’ll return with live shows on July 21st.

While we’re away enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon. At 8pm find out what drives human behavior on the program The Really Big Questions (TRBQ) with Dean Olsher.

You can listen to past episodes of Essential Pittsburgh here or check out the podcast in iTunes.

Today at noon on Q, with Jian Ghomeshi: Comedian and actor Maz Jobrani talks about the challenges of bringing those from the Middle East into mainstream entertainment and why the World Cup has helped Americans progress.

At 8pm, The Really Big Questions, hosted by Dean Olsher: What defines a “good death?” Most people hope to go quietly at home, surrounded by family. Today, we hear from people seeking to bring engagement with death back into our culture, through death salons, green funerals, and meaningful end-of-life care.

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Environment
5:31 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

New Law Encourages Property Owners to Curb Storm Water Flow

Local governments across Pennsylvania have some new options to address the widespread problem of storm water runoff. 

“It’s another tool,” said Jennifer Quinn of the environmental group PennFuture.   

She said SB 1255, signed by Gov. Corbett Thursday, builds upon Act 68 of last year that allows municipalities to establish storm water authorities to address the widespread problem of runoff. 

Under this new law, the storm water authorities can offer credits to homeowners and businesses to reduce their fees by implementing storm water management best practices.

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Health
5:28 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Legionella Detected at UPMC Presbyterian; No Patients Sickened

Eleven patients from a unit at UPMC Presbyterian were moved to other parts of the hospital following the detection of legionella in several sinks in a recently-remodeled area.

There are no confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease, but UPMC spokeswoman Wendy Zellner said the patients were moved as a precautionary measure.

“We are following our normal Legionella monitoring and prevention protocols and expect the unit to reopen soon after proper remediation measures are taken,” Zellner said in a statement.

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Science & Technology
5:25 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

CMU's Supercomputer Gets a Boost

When computer science students return to Carnegie Mellon University this fall, many will be able to get their hands on a parallel computing system that is roughly 500 times faster than the best laptop computer on campus.

CMU was recently shipped 448 “blades” that were being decommissioned by the Los Alamos National Laboratory. As the federal facility upgrades its supercomputing system it usually sends the stripped down computers or “blades” to research facilities like CMU to allow students to experiment.

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Community
5:20 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Vintage Cars Rumble Through Downtown Pittsburgh

Chuck Berrington said he has wanted a Ford Model A since high school.
Jessica Nath 90.5 WESA

From a 1967 “Playboy Pink” Mustang to a 1957 red BMW Isetta so small that it doesn’t even have side doors, cars of all different shapes and sizes, years and make rumbled their way through the city Wednesday.

The Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix hosted a parade and a car show, one of the various activities leading to the largest vintage race event in the nation this weekend in Schenley Park.

During the parade, the cars started at Station Square and made four stops: the US Steel Plaza, PPG Place, Market Square and Point State Park.

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City Government
12:04 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Peduto and Staff to Participate in Reddit 'Ask Me Anything' Forum Thursday

From pension plans to Act 47 and dog parks to bike lanes – many Pittsburghers have questions about the future of the city and Mayor Bill Peduto and his staff hope to have the answers.

That’s why he is taking to popular social media forum Reddit Thursday from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. for the city’s first “Mayor’s Night On(line).”

Peduto has used Reddit in the past to connect to the community – especially while campaigning – but this is the first time he’s done so as mayor, and this time he’s doing it differently.

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Business
3:30 am
Wed July 16, 2014

PWSA Now Accepting Cash Payments at 7-Eleven Stores

Customers of the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority now have another payment option at their disposal – cash payments at 7-Eleven stores.

“It’s a convenience for our customers who don’t have a bank account, a credit card, a debit card, they may be out of town,” said Melissa Rubin, a PWSA spokeswoman. “Cash payments can be made at any 7-Eleven across the U.S.”

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Government & Politics
10:14 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

New Law Gives Legal Aid for the Poor a Boost

Legal aid for the poor and disadvantaged is slated to get more funding under a measure approved by the legislature and signed by the governor this month.

Court fees are slated to increase in order to set aside more money to help eligible Pennsylvanians pay their legal bills when settling basic needs regarding things like housing, health and safety. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Tara Toohil (R-Luzerne), passed with nearly unanimous support in the House and Senate.

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Special Programming
9:00 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Today at Noon on Q: Zoo Animals and Their Discontents

Today on Q with Jian Ghomeshi, journalist Alex Halberstadt looks at the psychological problems of animals in zoos.
Credit Rob Bixby / Flickr

Essential Pittsburgh will take a summer break July 14th – 18th. We’ll return with live shows on July 21st.

While we’re away enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon. At 8pm find out what drives human behavior on the program The Really Big Questions (TRBQ) with Dean Olsher.

You can listen to past episodes of Essential Pittsburgh here or check out the podcast in iTunes.

Today at noon on Q, with Jian Ghomeshi: With his latest New York Times Magazine report “Zoo Animals and Their Discontents,” journalist Alex Halberstadt looks at the psychological problems of animals living in captivity.

At 8pm, The Really Big Questions, hosted by Dean Olsher: Today’s big question? Why does music move us? If music is a human universal, why do people of different cultures experience music differently?

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Transportation
2:50 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Port Authority Diverts Funds to Study Bus Rapid Transit Line

The Port Authority of Allegheny County approved shifting $1.56 million dollars from its capital budget to add to the amount needed to study a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line between downtown Pittsburgh and Oakland.

Port Authority Chairman Bob Hurley said an initial engineering and environmental study is a critical part of the process.

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