Local Stories

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

The ink-stained walls of the former Pittsburgh Post-Gazette printing pressroom will soon house a center celebrating free speech. A newly formed nonprofit called the International Free Expression Project will occupy the city-block-sized space starting this summer.

Elaine Thompson / AP

A Pennsylvania House committee is advancing legislation to more aggressively take firearms from people who have a domestic violence restraining order against them or who are deemed dangerous by a judge.

The House Judiciary Committee passed several firearms-related bills Tuesday. Their fate in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is unclear.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

The Pennsylvania State Police says troopers are now wearing body cameras in a pilot program that's to last through the end of 2018.

Acting Commissioner Robert Evanchick said Tuesday that patrol troopers in Troop B in Uniontown, Troop J in Avondale and Troop T in Somerset are trained and wearing the cameras on duty.

Evanchick says the program will help the department ensure it is prepared for wider use of the cameras.

NASA.gov

Astronauts often use zip-ties for quick fixes on payloads and hardware outside the International Space Station, but cutting them can be tricky and create debris.

Studies Show Groundwater Holding Own Against Drilling Boom

4 hours ago
Marie Cusick / StateImpact Pennslvania

New research suggests drinking water supplies in Pennsylvania have shown resilience in the face of a drilling boom that has turned swaths of countryside into a major production zone for natural gas.

House Votes For Pair Of Workplace Sexual Misconduct Studies

5 hours ago
Matt Rourke / AP

 State lawmakers voted Monday to commission a pair of studies about sexual misconduct in the workplace, including in state government, although critics said they would prefer to take more direct action to address the problem.

90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania might have its state budget—or at least part of it—done by the end of this week.

Rank and file members don't have much information yet. But if all goes to plan, Republican leaders say a proposal could make it through the House by the end of this week, and the Senate at the beginning of next—well ahead of the June 30th deadline.

“Very confident we’ll be able to advance a final product at the end of this week into next week,” Senate GOP Appropriations Chair Pat Browne said.

Katie Meyer

After staging demonstrations for the past six consecutive Mondays, the Pennsylvania chapter of the national Poor People’s Campaign has ended its extended residency in the state Capitol rotunda.

The Poor People's Campaign consists of a group of liberal activists who champion social and economic equality, in addition to extended voting rights and other causes.

In those six weeks of protesting, they chalked up 76 “civil disobedience” arrests. Nationwide, the group has reported more than 2,000 in total.

The 90 Neighborhoods, 90 Good Stories Podcast introduces you to people in the Pittsburgh area, who are striving to make their community a better place to live.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

The Woodland Hills School District has ranked among the top 10 districts nationwide for elementary school suspensions. Two years ago, several district and school leaders were sued by former students for incidents of alleged abuse at the hands of a former school police officer and a former high school principal.

John Amis / AP

Researchers have apologized to the Pennsylvania Department of Health for erroneously calling Pittsburgh a “hot spot” for kids going unvaccinated for religious or philosophical reasons.

Former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell Says He Has Parkinson's

Jun 18, 2018
Matt Rourke / AP

Former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell said Monday that he was diagnosed 3½ years ago with Parkinson's disease, but said he believes that treatment has stopped the progression of the disease and he has maintained his quality of life.

The 74-year-old Rendell made the announcement at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia with officials and doctors from the University of Pennsylvania as part of a public service message to urge people who suspect they have symptoms to get diagnosed and get treatment early.

Pittsburgh Black Breastfeeding Circle

Ngozi Doreen Tibbs is the co-founder and leader of the Pittsburgh Black Breastfeeding Circle in the Strip District. 90.5 WESA's Noah Brode spoke with Tibbs about helping black moms learn the hows and whys of breastfeeding.

Their conversation has been edited for length and clarity. 

NOAH BRODE: So, I'd like to start off by going over some of the benefits of breastfeeding, and why new moms are often encouraged to breastfeed.

An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner supports raising Pennsylvania’s minimum wage above $7.25 an hour, but not as high as Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf has proposed.

During a campaign stop in Robinson Friday, he said Wolf’s proposal to increase it to $12 an hour goes too far.

Instead, Wagner favors a wage in the $8.75 to $9.50 range. At that level, Wagner said, there’s less risk that employers in the service sector will replace workers with automation.

Republicans Move To Remake Court After Gerrymandering Case

Jun 18, 2018
Keith Srakocic / AP

After the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's Democratic majority threw out the Republican-drawn map of congressional districts as an unconstitutional gerrymander, Republicans raised talk of impeaching Democratic justices.

Larkin Page-Jacobs / 90.5 WESA

Urban fishing returns to Pittsburgh’s East End this summer. Carnegie Lake in Highland Park has been stocked with catfish, bluegill and largemouth bass for the first time in more than 20 years.

Carnegie Museum of Natural History

Pittsburgh-area scientists are part of an international group to discover a new squirrel-like mammal from the time of the dinosaurs. 

Ambolestes zhoui it is the most complete fossil of a relative of placental mammals found from the Mesozoic Era. It was unearthed in Inner Mongolia, a region of northeast China, in a quarry that, 126 million years ago, was a lake.

Lucy Perkins / WESA


Local Democrats have been recently running for office even in conservative Pittsburgh suburbs where the party's committee seats have been vacant for decades.

David Zalubowski / AP

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions spoke in Scranton on Friday, but much of his half-hour speech to about 150 local, state and federal law enforcement officials was directed at another city, about 120 miles south.

Philadelphia Eagles / Twitter

The Philadelphia Eagles are sporting some bling to commemorate their Super Bowl victory.

Players, coaches and organization members received their rings during a red-carpet party in Philadelphia on Thursday night.

Cast in 10-karat white gold, the ring features 219 diamonds and 17 green sapphires. For the first time, the rings are inscribed with each player's signature.

The ring honors Eagles fans with a silhouette of Lincoln Financial Field and the title of the team's fight song, "Fly, Eagles Fly."

Matt Slocum / AP

When President Donald Trump’s solar tariff took effect four months ago, it sent shockwaves through the solar energy industry.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld Ohio's voter registration law in a 5-4 ruling Monday that loosens restrictions on how and when the state can purge its voter rolls. Proponents of the law argue it keeps their record books cleaner, while voting rights activists argue it punishes registered voters for not exercising that right, and disproportionally removes minority and Democratic names.

Screengrab via WTAE's YouTube

A longtime Pittsburgh television meteorologist has died.

WTAE-TV says Joe DeNardo has died Friday, though a cause of death was not disclosed. He was 87.

DeNardo was the face of the station's weather report for more than 45 years before he retired in 2005.

DeNardo was born in Martins Ferry, Ohio and studied at Duquesne University before receiving a master's degree in meteorology from the University of Chicago.

Matt Rourke / AP

When Senators passed a proposal this week aimed at creating a citizen’s commission to draw Pennsylvania’s congressional maps, they tacked on an amendment that would fundamentally change the state’s appellate courts by electing judges based on regional district, instead of statewide.

It’s not a unique concept for state courts to be arranged that way.

However, Pennsylvania’s specific form of judicial election-by-district is significantly less common than supporters have indicated.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh's civic, corporate and community leaders spoke out against domestic violence Thursday at the fourth annual Father's Day pledge. The event was an initiative of Southwest PA Says No More, a coalition of organizations that fight against harassment and assault.

Kristy Trautmann, executive director of the FISA Foundation, says this year has been unprecedented for women coming forward and sharing experiences of assault. The local organization advocates for the rights of women, girls and people with disabilities.

Photo by Jared Alan Smith

Recovery memoirs have become a big part of our culture, both literary and televisual. 

Carolyn Kaster / AP

Smokey restaurants in Pennsylvania are a thing of the past thanks to the Clean Indoor Air Act. The law, which passed 10 years ago, outlaws smoking in most public spaces and workplaces.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

Baptist Homes is a sprawling senior care campus, located on a lush, quiet hillside in Mt. Lebanon. About 50 people live in the personal care part of the facility, where they can get help with everyday tasks. 

Katie Meyer / WITF

When Senators passed a proposal  this week aimed at creating a citizen's commission to draw Pennsylvania's congressional maps, they tacked on an amendment  that would fundamentally change the state's appellate courts by electing judges based on regional district, instead of statewide.

Jacqueline Larma / AP

George Washington's personal Revolutionary War headquarters flag is going on display at Philadelphia's Museum of the American Revolution, just in time for Flag Day.

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