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THURSDAY MARCH 6 2014

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THURSDAY, MARCH 6, 2014

BLAIR COUNTY REASSESSMENT

BLAIR COUNTY COMMISSIONERS VOTED THIS WEEK TO GO AHEAD WITH A REASSESSMENT WHICH COULD COST 3 TO 4 MILLION DOLLARS. THE ALTOONA MIRROR REPORTS THAT OFFICIALS HOPE TO USE REVENUE FROM CURRENT DEBT TAXES TO COVER THE COST...AND COUNTY FINANCE DIRECTOR ROBERT KUNTZ SAYS A TAX HIKE SHOULD NOT BE NECESSARY. THE NEW ASSESSMENTS SHOULD BE IN PLACE BY 2017.

HIGH ELECTRIC BILLS

THE PENNSYLVANIA PUBLIC UTILITY COMMISSION SAYS NEARLY 8-THOUSAND PEOPLE HAVE CONTACTED THEM ABOUT HIGH ELECTRIC BILLS FOR JANUARY AND FEBRUARY. MANY WHO PREVIOUSLY SIGNED UP FOR VARIABLE-RATE PLANS OPENED THEIR BILLS IN FEBRUARY TO FIND THEY HAD DOUBLED OR EVEN TRIPLED. THE PUC IS NOW LOOKING AT THE PROVIDERS’ DISCLOSURE STATEMENTS AND OTHER ISSUES. TO FILE A COMPLAINT, YOU CAN CALL 1-800-692-7380 OR GO TO attorney-general.gov.

PA IS #1

GOVERNOR TOM CORBETT ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY THAT SITE SELECTION MAGAZINE, A PUBLICATION SPECIALIZING IN THE CORPORATE REAL ESTATE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FIELD, HAS RANKED PENNSYLVANIA AS THE TOP STATE IN THE NORTHEAST REGION FOR NEW CORPORATE FACILITIES IN 2013. PENNSYLVANIA HAS MORE SUCCESSFUL PROJECTS THAN ALL OTHER 8 NORTHEAST STATES COMBINED. FOR THE 3RD YEAR IN A ROW, PENNSYLVANIA ALSO BROKE THE TOP 5 NATIONALLY, RANKING 4TH NATIONWIDE FOR NEW OR EXPANDED CORPORATE FACILITIES LAST YEAR.

STUDENT TRUSTEE AT PENN STATE?

THE CENTRE DAILY TIMES SAYS PENN STATE’S BOARD OF TRUSTEES COMMITTEES MEET TODAY IN HERSHEY TO CONSIDER ADVANCING A PROPOSAL TO ADD A PERMANENT STUDENT SEAT TO THE UNIVERSITY’S GOVERNING BODY. THE FULL BOARD WILL DISCUSS THE MATTER TOMORROW AND A VOTE IS POSSIBLE IN MAY TO CHANGE THE BY-LAWS AND CHARTER. STUDENT BODY LEADERS SAY THE LARGEST STAKEHOLDER GROUP AT THE UNIVERSITY SHOULD HAVE A VOICE IN THE DECISION-MAKING.

FATAL OD

ALTOONA POLICE CONFIRM TO THE ALTOONA MIRROR THAT THEY ARE INVESTIGATING A POSSIBLE DRUG OVERDOSE DEATH THAT HAPPENED SUNDAY NIGHT. A 35 YEAR OLD MAN WAS FOUND DEAD IN HIS HOME ON THE 1-THOUSAND BLOCK OF FIRST AVENUE. POLICE ARE NOW TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHO PROVIDED THE DRUGS. COPS SEIZED 2 EMPTY HEROIN PACKETS AND VARIOUS OTHER DRUG PARAPHERNALIA.

BANK TELLER WAIVES HEARING

THE LEAD TELLER AT M & T BANK ON SOUTH ALLEN STREET IN STATE COLLEGE WAIVED HER PRELIMINARY HEARING YESTERDAY. DOROTHEA BIRD OF BELLEFONTE IS ACCUSED OF STEALING 30-THOUSAND DOLLARS, BUT SHE HAS PLEADED NOT GUILTY. BIRD IS FREE ON 10-THOUSAND UNSECURED BOND.

FOOD STAMPS CHANGES

THE PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WELFARE IS MAKING A CHANGE IN ITS HEATING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM THAT WILL TRANSLATE INTO HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS IN FOOD STAMP BENEFITS. THE PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE REPORTS THAT THE AGENCY WILL SPEND 8 MILLION DOLLARS TO PRESERVE 300 MILLION IN FOOD STAMPS FOR UP TO 400-THOUSAND FAMILIES. CONNECTICUT AND NEW YORK HAVE TAKEN SIMILAR STEPS, AND OTHERS COULD FOLLOW BEFORE A DEADLINE NEXT WEEK.

DON’T CUT THE NATIONAL GUARD

THE HEAD OF THE STATE NATIONAL GUARD IS SPEAKING OUT ABOUT PROPOSED CUTS TO MILITARY FORCES. MAJOR GENERAL WESLEY CRAIG RECENTLY HAD A MEETING WITH NATIONAL GUARD OFFICIALS IN WASHINGTON ABOUT THE 15-HUNDRED PENNSYLVANIA SOLDIERS WHO WOULD BE CUT UNDER THE PROPOSAL. CRAIG SAYS THE GUARD OPERATES ABOUT 30 PERCENT BELOW THE COST OF THE ACTIVE COMPONENT. GOVERNOR TOM CORBETT SENT A LETTER TO DEFENSE SECRETARY CHUCK HAGEL EARLIER THIS WEEK SAYING THE NATIONAL GUARD MUST BE PRESERVED AS IT HAS A DUAL ROLE IN ASSISTING IN DOMESTIC EMERGENCIES AND DEPLOYING OVERSEAS.