The ABCs of Meadville
Meadville – The City of Meadville has extended the deadline for applications from residents willing to serve on one of the city’s volunteer authorities, boards, and commissions; there are currently vacancies on the Beautification Committee, Shade Tree Commission, Sewer Authority, and Water Authority. The new deadline for applications is next Friday, February 2nd. Applications can be obtained in person at the Meadville City Building on 894 Diamond Park, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday or online by visiting this link. More information about the authorities, boards, and commissions can be found at

Man Assault Victim with Rebar Club
Connoquenessing – A Butler County man named Thomas Clark has been arrested for allegedly beating another man with a piece of rebar in Connoquenessing Township. Police say that Clark attempted to cover up his attack by telling emergency services that the victim had been in a dirt bike accident, but witnesses came forward to testify differently. The rebar used in the attack was found inside Clark’s car and he is being held on $150,000 bail. The victim was taken to UPMC Presbyterian where he was diagnosed with a brain bleed and major damage to the skull.

State News, Contract Killer Confesses
Hollidaysburg – In Blair County, a man is being held with $1 million bail for allegedly agreeing to murder a woman’s family by burning down their home. Zachary Sellers says he was offered money and drugs by Heather Dibert to kill her estranged family and attempted to burn down their home with a Molotov cocktail in October of last year. Dibert is also in custody with a million dollars in bail, she denies ever hiring Sellers to commit a contract killing but authorities say that the pair’s phone records say otherwise. Dibert was in West Virginia in an attempt to create an alibi on the night of the attack.

Investigation into Teen Death Continues
Sharon – An autopsy revealed that hypothermia played a part in the death of an Ohio teenager whose remains were found in Mercer County on Sunday morning.  The body of 16-year-old Zachariah Croom was discovered in Sharon on Sunday morning and transferred to the custody of the Erie County Coroner’s office on Monday. An autopsy was performed by pathologist Eric Vey on Tuesday but some results may not be available until late February or early March. The Sharon Police Department is continuing to investigate the circumstances behind Zachariah’s passing but does not suspect foul play. Anyone with information should call the Sharon Police Department at 724-983-3210 or Mercer County Dispatch at 724-662-6110.

PA Employment Remains at All-Time High
Harrisburg – Pennsylvania’s Department of Labor and Industry (L&I) says that the number of employed Pennsylvanians has risen for the 11th straight month in a row despite a small increase in the unemployment rate. According to L&I in the month of December about 12,000 new people entered the labor pool and about 6,200 people started in new jobs causing the unemployment rate to reach 3.5% in December, an increase of 1/10th a percent.  At the same time a new record 6,182,700 residents of the commonwealth are working at least part-time  The national unemployment rate sits at 4.6% for the month of December.

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