Saturday, May 25, 2013
PennDOT's new YouTube channel features safety information and a video of a recent highway tanker fire.
PennDOT has a new YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/PennsylvaniaDOT, to expand its public outreach on safety and education initiatives, as well as department operations. “Our YouTube channel is our next step in communicating with our customers in more personal, interactive ways,” PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch said. So far, the new PennDOT YouTube channel includes: In the future, the department plans to add videos featuring department maintenance operations as well as highway safety efforts. The channel complements PennDOT’s social media outreach on Facebook and Twitter. Since the department launched its official Twitter account – PennDOTNews – in 2010, more than 11,000 followers have signed on. The PennDOT Facebook page, which was …
Friday, May 24, 2013
Drivers can expect roving patrols, safety checkpoints and special attention to seat belt compliance over Memorial Day Weekend.
PennDOT will partner with more than 600 law enforcement agencies and the Pennsylvania State Police to participate in a national “Click It or Ticket” seat-belt enforcement effort through June 9. The effort will focus largely on nighttime enforcement, using traffic safety checkpoints and roving patrols. Police will also use Traffic Enforcement Zones, which combine roving patrol and checkpoint tactics on roadways with high numbers of unbuckled crashes. According to PennDOT data, 503 people died last year in unbelted crashes, a decrease from 509 such fatalities in 2011. The total number of crashes in which people were not wearing seat belts also decreased to 15,528, compared with 16,298 in 2011. The majority of enforcement will occur at night…
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Nancy Tonkin, the former South Whitehall utility supervisor who is charged with her husband, William, of embezzling $850,000 from the township, might not have access to her pension.
The pension South Whitehall Utilities Supervisor Nancy Tonkin earned over 30 years could be frozen if she is judged guilty of embezzling $850,000 from the township, according to Township Manager Jon Hammer. Hammer said the township would take steps permissable under law to stop the flow of money from Tonkin's pension. Her husband, William, 69, a South Whitehall police officer from 1969 to 1996,was charged Wednesday with the same felonies. Lehigh County District Attorney James Martin said there was some question under the law whether his police pension could be frozen. "But that's a civil matter that's left up to the township," Martin said at a press conference on Tuesday. None of the money has been recovered yet, Martin said. "We will …
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Wednesday's Senate hearing on the IRS 'Tea Party' scandal included Pennsylvania's Sen. Pat Toomey and Sen. Bob Casey, who both released statements after the event.
Pennsylvania's Sen. Bob Casey (D) and Sen. Pat Toomey (R) both participated in Wednesday's hearing about IRS scrutinty of conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status. Both men released statements regarding the event. Witnesses before the Senate Finance Committee were: Casey, chairman of the Finance Subcommittee on Fiscal Responsibility and Economic Growth, said: “Pennsylvanians and Americans across the country deserve to know that the IRS and all government agencies do their jobs without prejudice or political agenda. I intend to hold accountable those responsible for any breach of the taxpayer’s trust. Today, as a member of the Senate Finance Committee, I directly questioned top IRS officials about what took place, who was …
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Republican Dean Browning concedes defeat to Scott Ott for their party's nomination for Lehigh County executive in Tuesday's primary, according to unofficial vote tallies.
Republican Scott Ott apparently beat challenger Dean Browning for the GOP nomination for Lehigh County Executive, according to unofficial tallies. Ott, a Lehigh County commissioner, will now face the apparent Democratic nominee, Tom Muller, who was named acting county executive last week, in the November general election. Browning, of South Whitehall, conceded the race about 10 p.m. at a gathering at the Buckeye Tavern in Macungie. He had been trying to make a political comeback after having been ousted as a county commissioner two years ago. He campaigned hard, airing TV commercials and emailing campaign messages. According to tallies reported on wfmz.com, Ott, of Lower Macungie, had 5,688 votes with 83 percent of the precincts reporting…
Incumbent Percy Dougherty faced a challenge from Scott Aquila for the Republican nomination to a Lehigh County commissioner seat in a district that includes South Whitehall, Upper Macungie, Lower Macungie and Alburtis.
Incumbent Percy Dougherty beat challenger Scott Aquila for the Republican nomination for the board's District 2 seat, according to unofficial tallies. Dougherty, of Lower Macungie, will square off in the November general election against the Democratic nominee, Susan Ellis Wild, of South Whitehall, who was unopposed for her party's nod in Tuesday's primary. District 2 includes South Whitehall, Lower Macungie, Upper Macungie and Alburtis.
South Whitehall Township has set up a website and email address for residents who have questions and concerns about the alleged $1 million embezzled from the utilities department.
South Whitehall Township has set up a website and email address for residents who have questions and concerns about the alleged $1 million embezzled from the utilities department. "We are fully committed to ensuring restitution to anyone who may have been victimized by this former employee's alleged actions," Hammer said at a joint news conference held Tuesday with Lehigh County District Attorney James Martin, Assistant District Attorney Charles Gallagher and South Whitehall Township Police Chief Thomas Toth. Hammer was referring to longtime township employee Nancy Tonkin, who with her husband, former township police officer William Tonkin, were charged with conspiring to embezzle $854,497 from township coffers. Residents who have …
Cash register and antiquated financial software have been replaced since former South Whitehall Township employee Nancy Tonkin's alleged embezzlement was uncovered.
South Whitehall Township's loss of nearly $1 million in an alleged embezzlement scheme in the utilities department that lasted more than 10 years prompted officials to make changes to ensure that something like this never happens again, according to Township Manager Jon Hammer. Former South Whitehall Utilities Supervisor Nancy A. Tonkin, and her husband, William J. Tonkin, a former South Whitehall patrolman, were charged Tuesday with embezzling $854,497 from the finance department's utilities' account. The scheme went undetected for at least 10 years in part because the department used an "old-fashioned" cash register and "antiquated" financial software that was not networked and did not link transactions, Hammer said. The township …
Monday, May 20, 2013
Here's what you need to know about Tuesday's primary election in South Whitehall Township.
Tuesday, May 21 is primary election day in Pennsylvania. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Poll problems? Contact the Lehigh County voter registration office at 610-782-3194. How to Use Touch Screen Voting Machines South Whitehall Races (click on the link for information on candidates) Lehigh County Races Voter ID According to Lehigh County Voter Registration: Polling Places Find Your Polling Place
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Privatization debates in the Pennsylvania General Assembly could mean changes to where Pennsylvanians can buy six-packs.
Saturday, May 18
By Melissa Daniels | PA Independent HARRISBURG — A simple six-pack of beer is becoming a focal point of the most substantive legislative debate on Pennsylvania alcohol laws since Prohibition. A Tuesday afternoon Senate Law and Justice Committee on liquor privatization, headed by Chairman Chuck McIlhinney, R-Bucks, featured numerous testifiers discussing the already-private industry of beer sales. Chief among the concerns from the beer distributor industry and taverns is package reform, or allowing establishments who sell beer to sell different amounts. Under current law, beer distributors cannot sell less than a case, and bars or grocery stores with the ability to sell bottles cannot sell more than a 12-pack. The Senate, under McIlhinney’s…