Deanna Garcia

General Assignment Reporter

Deanna fell in love with public radio in 2001, when she landed her first job at an NPR station: KRWG-FM in Las Cruces, NM, where she also attended college. After graduating with a degree in journalism and mass communications, she spent a summer in Washington, D.C. as an intern at NPR's Morning Edition. Following that, she was a reporter/All Things Considered Host at WXXI in Rochester, NY. Before coming to Pittsburgh, Deanna was the local All Things Considered host for KUNC in northern Colorado. In her spare time, Deanna enjoys watching movies and TV shows on DVD (the Golden Girls and Little House on the Prairie are among her favorites), bicycling, yard work, and reading.

 

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Pennsylvania
2:31 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

PA Court Reporters Partner with Flight 93 Memorial on Oral Histories Project

The Pennsylvania Court Reporters Association has agreed to help transcribe interviews of family, friends, first responders and investigators as part of an oral history project at the Flight 93 National Memorial.

More than 800 oral histories have been collected so far in an effort to cover every aspect of the Flight 93 story.

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Transportation
4:19 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

Second Pothole Blitz Underway in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Public Works crews will be out for the next few days patching potholes. To report a problem area call 311.
Credit Flickr user Brandy/dieselbug2007

Thanks to the break in wintry weather this week, Pittsburgh Public Works crews will conduct another pothole blitz.

Thirty crews will be out each day filling some of the city’s worst craters.

“Negley Run will be closed on Monday,” said Mayor Bill Peduto. “It’s past the point of being able to be patched. It’s going to be milled down to the concrete and will remain that way throughout the rest of the winter. We’re also looking at a couple of other areas that have been hit hard like Brookline Boulevard and Second Avenue.”

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Government & Politics
5:33 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

Peduto Seeks PUC Rule Change to Make Room for Lyft, Uber

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, City Councilman Dan Gilman and Policy Manager Matt Barron discuss a request to the PUC that they change their rules to make room for ride-share services such as Lyft and Uber.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

In recent weeks, two ride-sharing services have launched in Pittsburgh – Lyft and Uber.

Both offer paid rides available through a smart phone app. Shortly after their launch, the Pittsburgh Transportation Group, which owns Yellow Cab, asked Mayor Bill Peduto to pass an ordinance cracking down on such services. The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission made a similar request of Peduto.

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Education
3:20 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

Victim Advocate Group Calls on New Penn State President to Take Strong Stand on Sandusky Scandal

A day after Penn State announced the selection of Eric Barron as its new president, members of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, are responding to his statement that patience is needed.

At an event announcing his appointment, Barron was asked what the proper role he sees for the legacy of former Nittany Lions coach Joe Paterno.

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Health
3:30 am
Mon February 17, 2014

Allegheny County Youth Survey Aims to Improve Services for Adolescents

For the next year, Allegheny County will be surveying 14- to 19-year-olds in an effort to improve services offered for youth. The phone survey is based on the national “Youth Risk Behavior” survey.

“Which focuses on a whole variety of areas that include everything from drug abuse to physical activity and nutrition to sexual activity to mental health issues,” said Allegheny County Health Department Director Karen Hacker. “Many of the questions on the survey were drawn from the national survey.”

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Community
1:25 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

Same Sex Couples Apply for, are Denied Marriage Licenses on Valentine’s Day

Diane (Left) and Heidi Anderson were legally married in New York in 2012. The couple applied for and was denied a marriage license in Pennsylvania.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

As delivery men carried large bouquets of roses to various offices at the City County Building  in downtown Pittsburgh on Valentine’s Day, supporters of same-sex marriage and several couples gathered to apply for marriage licenses.

“We know that they will be denied,” said Melissa Watson with the Allegheny County chapter of Marriage Equality for PA, “They will not be allowed to get them, but we hope to show Pennsylvania and Pittsburgh and Allegheny County that we’re ready.”

At 10:00 AM two couples arrived ready to apply for their marriage licenses. One of those couples was

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Economy & Business
5:41 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Buyers Outnumber Amount of Homes for Sale in Pittsburgh Region

The number of homes for sale in the 13-county southwestern Pennsylvania region is not keeping pace with the number of people looking to buy homes.

That’s according to a January 2014 report from real estate group West Penn Multi List Inc., which showed new listings in 12 of the 13 counties it covers decreased in the first month of the year.

President George Hacket said overall, the housing market in the region is strong.

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Government & Politics
5:09 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

ICA Approves City Budget Proposal Changes, Doles Out Gaming Funds to Pensions

The state board that oversees the city of Pittsburgh’s finances has given its approval to changes made to the proposed city budget by Mayor Bill Peduto.

The Peduto administration had until the end of March to present final changes to the budget but has done so early.

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Environment & Energy
1:30 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

Cold Weather, Natural Gas Development Make It Harder to Get Propane to Market

The brutally cold winter experienced by much of the Midwest and Northeast this year is partly to blame for higher propane prices and for making the fuel harder to come by in parts of the country.

The Pennsylvania Propane Gas Association, or PAPGA, said other factors include a decreased capacity to get the fuel from one place to another.

“There actually is a pretty strong supply of propane in the country," said PAPGA spokesman Michael Meath. "It’s not that there’s a shortage, that’s not the case at all. It’s really been a matter of moving the product.”

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Government & Politics
3:30 am
Sun February 9, 2014

Bipartisan Casey, Collins Bill Aims to Spur Small Business Growth in US

U.S. Sens. Bob Casey (D-PA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) are pushing for passage of a bill they said would boost the economy and create jobs.

The Small Business Tax Certainty and Growth Act aims to make it easier for small businesses to start, invest in capital and hire workers, but most importantly, Casey said it would mean more stability.

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Health
3:05 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Campaign Aims to Dramatically Increase HPV Vaccination Rates for Pre-Teens

The Jewish Healthcare Foundation, in partnership with the Eye and Ear Foundation, have kicked off a national public awareness campaign aimed at medical providers and parents, urging them to have their pre-teen boys and girls vaccinated against the human papillomavirus.

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Health
3:58 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Town Hall Discusses Heroin, Drug Use in Wake of Overdose Deaths

Following the recent rash of deaths linked to heroin laced with fentanyl, the Pennsylvania Alliance for Safe and Drug-Free Children is holding a town hall Thursday night geared toward parents.

There have been 14 deaths in Allegheny County linked to the drug, with more in surrounding counties. This, along with the high-profile death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman from a suspected heroin overdose, is prompting the organization to reach out to those close to people who may be vulnerable to drug addiction, particularly youth.

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Health
1:41 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Allegheny Health Network Joins US Olympic Committee National Medical Network

Allegheny Health Network has been designated by the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) as an official Olympic Regional Medical Center.

“As a participating center, one of just six in the country, we will have the great privilege of playing a prominent role in the health and well-being of our nation’s elite Team USA athletes,” said Dr. Patrick DeMeo, chair of the AHN Orthopedic Institute.

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State Government
11:56 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Corbett Looks to Spend More, Relying on Unresolved Items

Gov. Tom Corbett makes his budget proposal to state lawmakers Tuesday.
Credit pa.gov

Gov. Tom Corbett delivered his fourth budget address midday Tuesday, calling for more than $900 million in additional state spending over the current fiscal year.

A good chunk of Corbett’s proposed roughly 3 percent increase in state spending would go to education. About $300 million more would go toward a new block grant for schools, special education and early learning programs, and higher education scholarships.

The proposal also calls for continuing the phase out of the Capital Stock and Franchise Tax on business holdings, erasing the levy by 2016.

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Government & Politics
3:30 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Application Process Underway for Small Games in Bars

Applications are now being accepted for new the new Tavern Gaming License, made possible by Act 90. The law allows certain liquor licensees, such as bars and taverns, to operate small games of chance

“The new law is very specific,” said PLCB spokeswoman Stacy Kriedman. “It allows pull-tab games, daily drawing and tavern raffles, games that must be, in part, for a charitable or public purpose.”

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Government & Politics
2:46 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

PA Democrats Outline Priorities Ahead of Governor’s Budget Address

From left to right: Senators Matt Smith, Jay Costa and Wayne Fontana outline 2014-15 Democratic budget priorities.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Less than one week before Gov. Tom Corbett delivers his annual budget address, Pennsylvania Democrats fanned out across the commonwealth announcing their spending priorities.

They are calling on Corbett to focus on five main areas: education, Medicaid expansion, human service programs, jobs and development, and increasing the minimum wage.

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Government & Politics
6:07 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Obama Talks Income Inequality, Retirement Savings In West Mifflin

President Barack Obama speaks before a few hundred people at U.S. Steel’s Irvin Plant in West Mifflin Wednesday.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Reiterating themes from Tuesday night’s State of the Union speech, President Barack Obama addressed a cold crowd of about 500 at U.S. Steel’s Irvin Plant in West Mifflin Wednesday.

Obama once again called on Congress to raise the federal minimum wage and said “too many Americans are working harder than ever just to get by, let alone get ahead.”

He then went on to talk about his four-point "Opportunity Agenda."

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Government & Politics
5:50 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Sen. Casey Hopes to Hear About Income Inequality, Jobs and Early Learning from Obama

Tianna Gaines-Turner, a Philadelphia woman, will be Senator Bob Casey's guest at Tuesday's State of the Union address.
Credit senate.casey.gov

President Obama will deliver the annual State of the Union Tuesday night and is expected to address, among other things, income inequality and his push to raise the federal minimum wage.

Pennsylvania Democratic Sen. Bob Casey said that is something he hopes to hear more about.

“The minimum wage increase, which you all know I support, if we get in enacted it would be the right thing to do for workers,” Casey said, “tens of thousands in our state and millions across the country.”

He said benefits of raising the minimum wage would extend beyond individual workers.

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Religion & Faith
2:50 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

As World Marks Holocaust Remembrance Day, Pittsburgh Launches 6 Million Pennies Campaign

Monday marks UN Holocaust Remembrance Day, and events are taking place across the globe. Jan. 27 is the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp.

In Pittsburgh, community leaders, scholars and representatives with the Holocaust Center of Greater Pittsburgh used the day to launch the six million pennies campaign.

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Transportation
3:58 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

American Airlines Relocating Moon Operations Center to Texas

Though it has been speculated it would happen since the merger between American Airlines and US Airways, it was made official Friday.

American Airlines announced it is moving its operation center in Moon Township to Dallas. That means 600 jobs will leave the area.

“I guess the good news is, those 600 will be hired, they have the option of working, obviously they’ll have to relocate, and they’ll have to move to Dallas,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.

For this region, he said the announcement is not good news, thought it wasn’t unexpected.

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Transportation
1:16 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Port Authority of Allegheny County Picks New CEO

The Port Authority of Allegheny County has hired Ellen McLean as its next CEO. McLean has been serving as the interim CEO for nearly a year and was previously the chief financial officer for the Port Authority.

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Life of Learning
4:26 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Pittsburgh Joins Statewide Effort to Make Quality Pre-K Available to All Families

The Jewish Community Center offer pre-K programs. While these kids had reading time, an effort was launched a few doors down to ensure all PA kids have access to quality pre-K programs.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Quality pre-K programs can help kids later in school, both academically and socially. But many families can’t afford to send their children to pre-school, and government funding for early childhood programs has decreased in recent years.

A statewide effort was launched Thursday to ensure all three- and four-year-olds have access to quality pre-K programs. Michelle Figlar is executive director of the Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children, or PAEYC. She said research has shown children who have access to strong pre-K programs do better overall in school.

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Health
2:28 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

Allegheny Health Network, Johns Hopkins to Collaborate on Cancer Care, Research

Dr. Tony Farah and Dr. David Parda announce that Allegheny Health Network has signed a memorandum of understanding with Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny Health Network and Johns Hopkins Medicine have announced that they have signed a memorandum of understanding between their two cancer centers.

When finalized, Allegheny Health Network and the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center will collaborate on several initiatives, share research and participate in joint projects, among other things.

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Health
7:38 am
Wed January 22, 2014

Study: Uninsured Patients and Women Less Likely to be Transferred Between Hospitals

A recent study from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that uninsured patients with a variety of common medical diagnoses were less likely to be transferred between hospitals for treatment.

The study came about because an “urban myth” that uninsured patients were more likely to be transferred persisted, yet there was no hard data to back it up.

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Health
3:35 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

New Wellness Campaign Aimed at Making Allegheny County Healthiest in Nation

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald and County Health Department Director Karen Hacker launched the Live Well Allegheny Campaign at PNC YMCA in downtown Pittsburgh.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Live Well Allegheny is a new initiative aimed at promoting health and wellness throughout Allegheny County.

The effort was launched Tuesday by Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, members of the county Board of Health and Health Department Director Karen Hacker.

Fitzgerald said while the Pittsburgh region ranks high on national lists for things such as livability and academia, it could also be a leader in healthy living.

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