The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

January 3, 2013

In Brief | CSA moves ahead with hydroelectric project

Associated Press

— Cambria Somerset Authority members plan to meet with a Maine-based consultant tasked with developing designs for a $5.2 million project to put hydroelectric generating stations at three of the authority’s dams.

Kleinschmidt Energy & Water Resource Consultants, which steered the project through feasibility studies, was chosen late last year to move the plan through the initial federal permitting and design phase. The initial steps are expected to get under way this year, the board said Thursday.  

The phase will take several years to complete but will move the project to the point of being construction-ready, Chairman Jim Greco has said.

The latest study shows hydroelectric facilities at Peggy’s Run, Hinkston Run and Quemahoning Reservoir could generate up to $534,000 in annual revenue for the authority. The authority is pursuing grants to help pay for some of the design phase.

New Year’s crashes kill 1, hurt 86

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania State Police said car accidents killed one person and injured 86 others over the short New Year’s holiday period. State police investigated 377 crashes on Monday and Tuesday. Of those, 55 were alcohol-related. Troopers made 184 arrests for driving under the influence and issued 1,884 speeding citations.

Woman settles mug shot suit against WTAE

PITTSBURGH – A federal lawsuit has been settled by a woman who said her mug shot was wrongly aired by a Pittsburgh TV news program after her daughter – who has the same first and last name – was charged with kidnapping.

Federal court records show Hearst Stations Inc., which owns WTAE-TV, and Kathy Bass, 49, of New Salem, have settled the lawsuit, though terms aren’t disclosed in court documents filed Wednesday.

Hearst lawyers had blamed police for giving them the mug shot of Bass when her 24-year-old daughter was arrested in August 2010. The younger Bass was sentenced to one to two years in prison after pleading to lesser charges in the case.

Pa.’s federal lawmakers backed ‘cliff’ deal

HARRISBURG – The deal that averted the “fiscal cliff” was supported unanimously by the Republicans and Democrats who make up Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation.

Sens. Bob Casey and Pat Toomey, as well as all 19 of the state’s members of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted in favor of the legislation Tuesday. The deal passed 257-167 in the House and 89-8 in the Senate.

University faculty, state to resume talks

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania higher education officials are heading back to the negotiating table with the union representing state university faculty.

The two sides are slated to meet today for the first discussions since Dec. 11.

Members of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties have been working without a contract for about 18 months. Bargaining has stalled over issues including pay for part-time instructors, health care benefits and compensation for online education. The union has authorized its leadership to call a strike.

Toomey named to Senate Finance Committee

HARRISBURG – U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey has been assigned to the Senate committee that oversees taxation, trade and certain health programs. The Pennsylvania Republican said Thursday that the action makes him one of only two freshman senators on the Senate Finance Committee, which deals with taxes, trade agreements and health program under the Social Security Act.