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Church to pray for nation, military in outdoor event

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DALLAS — Dallas Baptist Church will host a non-denominational community hour of prayer for the nation and those serving in the U.S. Armed Forces at 6 p.m. Saturday under a tent at the Dallas Baptist Church at the Briarcrest and Route 415 intersection in Dallas. Guests are encouraged to bring names, photos and memorabilia of those serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.An offering will be collected to benefit “Operation Heal Our Patriots.” A free ice cream social will follow. Park at the church or Idetown Fire Department next door. For more information, visit www.dallasbaptistchurch.org.

 

County assessment appeal deadline is today

Today is the deadline to file Luzerne County assessment appeals.Assessment reductions granted will take effect in 2015 municipal, county and school tax bills. The Assessor’s office will accept applications postmarked today. Appeals filed after today will apply to 2016 tax bills, Assessment Director Anthony Alu said.Appeal forms are available in the Assessor’s Office in the county annex, across from the courthouse on River Street in Wilkes-Barre; or on the cou...

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Arguments scheduled in PUC public record case

HARRISBURG — Commonwealth Court scheduled arguments in a case in which The Times Leader and The Morning Call, Allentown, are arguing against the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission’s and PPL Electric Utilities’ attempts to keep private an anonymous letter regarding wrongdoing by PPL, when it dispatched crews to restore electrical service in the wake of a severe store on Oct. 29, 2011.

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Medical assistant charged with fraud

SCRANTON— A woman from Avoca was charged Tuesday in federal court with unlawfully billing Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania for bogus prescriptions.Sandra Jalowiec, 43, a medical assistant at a physician’s office in Old Forge, was charged with health care fraud, according to U.S. Attorney Peter J. Smith.According to information filed in federal court, Jalowiec defrauded Blue Cross by forging prescriptions in the name of a licensed medical doctor for pai...

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Man sentenced for taking gun into federal building

SCRANTON — A Pittston man pleaded guilty to taking a loaded handgun into the William J. Nealon Federal Building last month.Jerome Vantaggi, 58, was immediately sentenced by U.S. Magistrate Judge Karoline Mehalchick on Tuesday to two months in prison for unlawfully possessing and causing to be present a loaded firearm in a federal building.Vantaggi was credited for 55 days time served in jail.Federal prosecutors said Vantaggi took the loaded firearm into ...

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Suspect in killing of Hazleton man wants statement tossed

WILKES-BARRE — A Hazleton man awaiting trial in a fatal shooting last year wants to prevent prosecutors from using a statement he made during an interview with police.Adamis Arias, 22, faces a charge of criminal homicide in the death of 19-year-old Angel Villalobos of Hazleton on Feb. 23, 2013.At a pre-trial hearing Thursday before Judge David Lupas, attorney Allison Kacmarski sought to suppress a statement Arias made while in custody on an unrelated probation viol...

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Many don’t feel strengthening job market

WASHINGTON — For millions of workers, happy days aren’t quite here again.Though the U.S. unemployment rate has plunged since the start of last year to a five-year low of 6.1 percent, the Gallup Organization has found that consumers’ view of the economy is the glummest it’s been in seven months.The July jobs report being released Friday will likely show a sixth straight month of healthy 200,000-plus gains. Yet for millions of people like Douglas Hu...

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Performing Arts Institute to present Tony Award-winning musical ‘In the Heights’

“Graffiti Pete” sidles, swaggers and sneaks across the rehearsal stage, stealthily pulling out a spray can.“Yo!” Usnavi hollers. “That’s my wall!”Caught in the act, the graffiti artist abandons his plan to tag a bodega, and joins in the opening number, singing and dancing with the rest of the cast.If you want to know what happens next, you can watch as Wyoming Seminary’s Performing Arts Institute caps off its six...

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Survey: Gas industry work force grew most in construction, engineering sector

The bulk of last year’s new hires in Pennsylvania’s natural gas industry came from the field, according to a survey published Wednesday by the industry’s leading trade group.The Marcellus Shale Coalition, a lobbying group supported by just about all major gas producers in Pennsylvania and many of their subcontractors, released results from its 2013 Year End Workforce Survey revealing trends in hiring, and also data on challenges companies face in filling their ran...

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United Way collects 90,000 pounds of food

WILKES-BARRE — More than 90,000 pounds of food were donated to the United Way’s Christmas in July Food Drive this year.United Way employees worked diligently to weigh food on Thursday as organizations brought in their donations collected from over the last few months.The total: 90,537 pounds.Over 30 organizations collected food or monetary donations to help those in need in the community.Rich Kutz, director of the Weinberg Food Bank, str...

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S&S 16u still alive at ASA/USA National Championships

SALEM, VA — The Stripes & Strikes 16u softball team won 2 of 3 games in the double-elimination portion of the 16u ASA/USA National Championship Tournament. Central Kentucky Pride defeated S&S, 4-1 in the first game. In game two, Stripes & Strikes racked up 21 hits to top WHC Fever of Baltimore, MD, 15-3 in five innings. Game three saw S&S recorded 18 hits to down the Louisville Stunners, 13-6.Stripes & Strikes (25-13) is scheduled to play Mobile, Alabama at 8 a.m. Friday morn...

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Inmate escapes from Luzerne County minimal offenders building

WILKES-BARRE — The search is on for an inmate who escaped from the Luzerne County Correctional Facility’s minimal offenders building by climbing over a fence just after 11 a.m. Thursday.Police and four regional fire departments equipped with boats concentrated the search along both shores of the Susquehanna River for nearly three hours.J. Allen Nesbitt, correctional division director, identified the escaped inmate as Kevin Kuklinski Jr., 24, last known addres...

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Niece charged in aunt’s death in Hanover Township

HANOVER TWP. — An elderly woman before she died told a paramedic her niece, Isis Ann Brown, pushed her over a porch railing before she was pummelled with ashtrays and ceramic figurines, according to homicide-related charges filed Thursday.Township police and Luzerne County detectives charged Brown, 34, with criminal homicide in the death of her aunt, 78-year-old Dorothy Koreny.Authorities allege Brown threw items at Koreny outside their home on Solomon Street in Ha...

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State wants to revoke child care license at Greater Pittston YMCA

PITTSTON — The state Department of Public Welfare has filed documents to revoke the Greater Pittston YMCA’s day care license after a 6-year-old girl was left unattended in a van following a petting zoo field trip last month.YMCA officials, meanwhile, say they are working to resolve the situation and maintain the program.DPW informed the YMCA of its decision in a letter mailed July 24.It states that the decision to revoke the certificate was based o...

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Stahl has license suspended

The state has suspended the teaching license for Steven Stahl, the Coughlin high school dean of students and longtime wrestling coach awaiting trial on charges he had sex with a female student multiple times in classroom closets.Stahl, who has been suspended from his job at Wilkes-Barre Area School District since February, is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing this Friday in Luzerne County Court on a single charge of corruption of a minor.The state Professional Standards ...

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U.S. Sen. Bob Casey backs funding for West Pittston levee project

U.S. Sen. Bob Casey has begun the push for funding that could aid the proposed West Pittston levee project.In a letter to a key Senate committee with oversight over flood funding, Casey, D-Scranton, Wednesday called on the committee to support the current funding in the House proposal of $20 million. The ‘Section 205’ program is part of the Small Flood Risk Management Project (SFRMP). This will help provide federal funding to smaller flood control projects that don̵...

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Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter enthralls Kirby crowd

WILKES-BARRE — Legendary lyricist Robert Hunter enthralled a small crowd Wednesday at the F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts with his guitar, harmonica and the classic songs he co-wrote for the Grateful Dead.From the moment he strode on stage and began to sing “Bertha,” written with Jerry Garcia and first featured on the 1971 live double album called “Grateful Dead,” he set the evening’s mood perfectly. For the next two hours, it would be ...

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Pitcher Bruce Billings holds down Gwinnett long enough for RailRiders to rally

MOOSIC — Time after time, the pesky hitters in Gwinnett’s lineup kept the threat of danger imminent.But Bruce Billings wouldn’t break.And because of it, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders finally cracked a game open.Billings worked six gritty innings of one-run ball Thursday, John Ryan Murphy homered and Jose Pirela came a homer shy of the cycle as the RailRiders rolled past the G-Braves, 8-3 at PNC Field.“I think he did a ...

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