A Grove City man has been arrested on endangering the welfare of a child and possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia.  WFMJ-TV reports 35 year old Joshua Caldwell was taken into custody when officers were called to a residence on Park St. in Grove City for a welfare check on a 5 year old girl. While investigating, they found drugs, drug paraphernalia, and “terrible living conditions” in the residence.  Caldwell is currently held at $5000 bail awaiting a preliminary hearing on July 12th.

Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro is urging the state Senate to return to session in Harrisburg to sign off on the state budget. He also wants the Senate to work with the House to pass legislation that will direct how money in the budget bill can be spent. The governor additionally has refuted GOP accusations that he went back on his word on the 45-billion-dollar spending plan. Republicans who control the Senate haven’t scheduled another session until September, which means the state budget could be held up until then.

Prosecutors are continuing to call witnesses in the penalty phase of Robert Bowers’ trial.  Bowers was convicted in June as the man who shot and killed 11 people at the Tree of Life synagogue in October of 2018.  Prosecutors yesterday called a forensic psychiatrist to the stand who interviewed Bowers over a three-day period in May. The doctor previously interviewed serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, and John Hinckley Junior who shot Ronald Reagan in 1981.  Dr. Park Dietz says that Bowers told him that he was a P.O.W. in a war on white people that has been orchestrated by Jews.

–  Despite much activity on the issue this past session, there were no provisions to increase the state minimum wage made in the state budget passed by the Senate last week. The House had approved a measure on June 20th that would increase it to 11-dollars an hour and expanding that to 15-dollars within three years. But the measure wasn’t referred to a committee in the Senate until last Wednesday.

The National Senior Games begins this weekend in the City of Pittsburgh.  The 12-day event gets underway today and is considered the largest multi-sport event in the world for seniors.  More than 11-thousand athletes are expected to participate in events including cycling, track & field, swimming,  5k and 10k road races, basketball and a triathlon. The competition is for men and women 50 and over.

The 166th Big Butler Fair comes to an end this weekend.  The Butler County event is billed as the largest fair in Western Pennsylvania with entertainment including fireworks, rides, demolition derbies, concerts and truck pulls.  The nine-day event closes out tomorrow night.  Big-Butler-Fair-dot-com has all of the details.

Community College of Butler County is taking its nationally renowned aviation associate degree.  Future pilots who enroll in the James M. Johnson School of Aviation Sciences program online can complete the coursework online while participating in flight training at nine partner flight schools across Pennsylvania.  The college launched its aviation school in 1969.  CCBC officials say it’s now considered one of the best schools in the country.  

Initial filings for unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania dropped last week compared with the week prior.  New jobless claims fell to 11,687 in the week ending July 1, down from 12,072 the week before, the Labor Department said. U.S. unemployment claims rose to 248,000 last week, up 12,000 claims from 236,000 the week prior on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The negotiated Pennsylvania state budget for fiscal year 2024 that’s on its way to the governor’s desk includes one of the largest-ever spending plans for education. The entire budget is about five-percent more than last year’s plan, with 567-million-dollars earmarked for K-through-12 funding. The plan includes universal free school breakfasts and 100-million in supplemental spending for the poorest school districts.

Federal legislation that was passed recently includes a change in work requirements for people who use food stamps through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). In Pennsylvania, SNAP work requirements are currently waived statewide until October 1st for able-bodied adults. Those are people ages 18 to 49 who have no children or other dependents. To stay eligible for SNAP benefits at the federal level, people in this group will have to work at least 80 hours per month on average or take part in an approved training program for at least 20 hours per week.    

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