Authorities in New Castle say a teen is in custody for allegedly shooting through a family’s windshield this week. Police Chief Robert Salem says the 17-year-old suspect fired a gun at the vehicle a mother and her ten-year-old daughter were driving in on Grant Street Tuesday evening. Salem says the bullet ricocheted around the interior of the car before striking the woman in the head, causing a small welt. The chief does not believe the victims were targeted. He says the juvenile suspect will be charged as an adult.
A Beaver County man is facing several charges after he destroyed parts of properties throughout the Koppel area while allegedly driving drunk. The incident happened when Daniel Hays left a bar after getting into an argument Monday night. Police say he drove his pickup truck at a high rate of speed and drove the truck through several properties hitting a porch, fence and shed. After crashing through the shed, Hays fled and was later found and arrested. A court date is scheduled for June 2nd.
Shell has agreed to pay $10 million to resolve allegations that it polluted the air around its massive new petrochemical refinery in Beaver County. Governor Josh Shapario announced Shell acknowledged that the plant, violated air emissions limits. The multibillion-dollar facility opened in November, only to be shut down months later after the company said it identified a problem with a system that’s designed to burn off unwanted gases. Shell said it has made repairs and planned to restart the plant on Wednesday.
Mercer County authorities do not suspect foul play in the drowning death of a Pittsburgh man who was fishing Tuesday at Lake Latonka. The Sharon Herald reports 84 year old Charles N. Deloe found unresponsive in the water at the boat dock around 5:10 p.m. The County Coroner’s office said Deloe lost his balance, fell into the water and hit his head on the dock. The death was ruled accidental from asphyxiation by freshwater drowning.
The jobless rate in Pennsylvania has fallen to its lowest level since 1976. State officials say the rate for April fell to four-point-one percent after being four-point-two-percent in March. The preliminary numbers were released late last week by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry. The figures show employers added 11-thousand nonfarm jobs in April and the number of people working or looking for work continued to rise.
A state House committee has taken the first step toward cutting cell-phone taxes in Pennsylvania. Legislation being developed would reduce the effective tax rate by 11 percentage points from its current rate of over 16-and-a-half percent. The bill won unanimous approval earlier this week from members of the House Consumer Protection, Technology and Utilities Committee. The measure would end the six-percent sales tax and the five-percent gross receipts tax on cell phones. However, York County Republican Seth Grove says he’s not for the measure. He says other elements of Governor Shapiro’s budget proposal would undo savings from the cut.
A coalition of unions has filed an antitrust complaint with the Justice Department, accusing the UPMC hospital system of suppressing wages and worsening working conditions. The coalition includes S.E.I.U. Healthcare Pennsylvania and claims UPMC workers are subject to a “wage penalty” because of the health system’s dominance in local markets. A spokesman for the hospital group contends UPMC tells the New York Times in an e-mail that the system “is among the best places to work in all the regions served.” The Pittsburgh-based hospital group is the largest private employer in Pennsylvania.
A proposal that would allow insurers in Pennsylvania to ask about the race and ethnicity of people applying for life, health and accident insurance is being reviewed. Questions about race and ethnicity are banned under current state law out of concern they could lead to discrimination. However, state regulators reportedly are not enforcing the ban in light of new federal rules designed to stamp out disparities in insurance coverage and access. The new state rules would set parameters for collecting racial and other demographic data in ways that supporters say would allow insurers to comply with the federal rules. Those are scheduled to take effect in 2025.