Ben Avon Council authorized spending up to $15,000 for snow removal at its regular meeting on Feb. 16.

The money will pay for any additional resources, including equipment or manpower, the borough brings in to clear the roads of the snow left behind by the recent storms.


A car parked in the lot at Animal Friends on Camp Horne Road in Ohio Township was reported broken into on Feb. 21. A purse and cell phone were stolen, according to police.

Two people were taken into custody by Ohio Township Police on outstanding arrest warrants from Allegheny County. Timothy Grzandziele, 46, of Ohio Township, was picked up Feb. 19 on a warrant for a probation violation. Henry Lavrich, 25, of Kilbuck Township, was arrested Feb. 20 during a traffic stop.


Bellevue Council voted unanimously on Feb. 16 to pay contractor T.A. Robinson for construction of the parking lot adjacent to the borough building.

The payment of $43,895.29 will come from the borough's remaining bond funds.


Work to stabilize the Route 65 landslide site will continue this year.

Kilbuck Township Supervisors voted Tuesday to issue a grading permit for 2010 to Cleveland Construction. Engineer Rob Arnold said that the contractor will continue Phase 3 work from 2009, and later this year may apply for another grading permit in order to launch Phase 4.


Kilbuck Township will piggyback on a Ben Avon contract to perform mandatory televising of sanitary sewers.

Township secretary Harry Dilmore reported at the supervisors' Feb. 23 meeting that Kilbuck is likely to get a better price and reduce costs by joining Ben Avon's contract for the work.


Kilbuck residents and officials hope to develop a plan to better respond in situations like the recent blizzard.

Although residents were pleased with snow removal efforts, they expressed concern at the supervisors' meeting Tuesday about elderly or disabled residents who were left without power for days.

Supervisors' chairman John Fader said that the township needed to identify people at risk, who have special medical conditions or are disabled, so that they can be checked on during prolonged periods without power or when they are unable to get out because of excessive snow.


Bellevue's Memorial Park could become home to several miles of trails after the borough council voted unaniumously last week to allow the Pittsburgh Trails Advocacy Group (PTAG) to develop a plan for the wooded area.

PTAG founder and Bellevue resident David Biber said that the nonprofit group provides design and labor to create trails that can be used by cyclists, hikers and walkers. Ultimately, he said, access to the park and swimming pool could be provided from the center of Bellevue, eliminating the need for children to be driven or walk along North Balph Avenue and Bellevue Road.


The appeal of property assessments that are lower than the purchase price will continue in the Northgate School District.

The school board voted unanimously Monday to have the district's solicitor continue to file appeals when the assessment is at least $10,000 less than 87.5 percent of a property's purchase price.


Two Bellevue men face charges of aggravated assault and resisting arrest after Avalon Police responded to a report of a large group of people fighting in a parking lot on Route 65 on Feb. 14. Mark Nicholas Jr., 28, of Madison Avenue, and James Peterson, 24, of Teece Avenue, were charged with fighting the responding officers.

A purse belonging to a Crescent, PA woman was stolen from her vehicle on Feb. 13 while it was parked at the Red, White & Blue Store on Route 65.

A Fender guitar was reported stolen from a van in the Rusty Dory parking lot on Feb. 14.


Officials in Avalon are hoping for the state to help pay for repairs and additional resources the borough brought in to assist in cleaning up the snow left behind by last week's storms.

Borough manager Harry Dilmore said that Avalon will spend $20,000-$25,000 on various rental equipment and personnel.

"We took a big blow to our budget with this storm," council member Robert Powell said at Tuesday's regular council meeting.


Following state deadlines so it can file for exceptions to raise the property tax millage rate higher than the state index without a voter referendum, the Avonworth School Board adopted a preliminary bud-get for the 2010-11 school year at its meeting on Monday.

The district plans to file for an exception to the referendum rule because the amount schools will have to contribute to the Pennsylvania School Employees' Retirement System (PSERS) will nearly double next year.


The elephant in Bellevue council chambers was addressed Tuesday evening as officials voted to amend the borough's administrative code to allow council to decide when regular meetings will be held.

It took only a comment from council member David Gillingham Jr. for the concern that meeting dates would be used as a political weapon to come front and center.

"We could set meetings for Mondays and the Viscusis can't make it," Gillingham said two different times.


Emsworth will create the borough's first capital fund after Mayor Dee Quinn broke a tie vote at the Feb. 10 council meeting.

Council member Paul Getz said that Emsworth has never had such a fund, and recommended that funds currently in certificates of deposits and money market accounts, totaling around $218,000, be designated for a capital projects fund. The fund would help pay for possible future expenses related to the construction, replacement or repair of any borough property, he said.

Council member Amy Adams questioned why the borough should tie up available monies.


Staff in the Avalon administrative offices may have a little extra help this summer, as the borough has been approved to participate in a college internship program with the Local Government Academy.

Borough manager Harry Dilmore told council members at the regular meeting on Tuesday that the borough had been accepted and that he would begin interviewing potential candidates later this week.

He noted that the $4,300 cost to participate in the program will be shared with Kilbuck Township, which also has applied to participate.


Several new courses will be available next year to Northgate High School students.

The school board approved courses in Pennsylvania Wildlife, Pennsylvania Ecology, Research Science, Marine Biology, Genetics and Neuroscience.


The new Web site for Avalon Borough is up and running.

Council member Jonathan Bernstein said that the address for the Web site is


Two men were charged by Ohio Township Police with driving under the influence.

Ryan Edward Eck, 23, of Bradford Woods, was arrested Feb. 13 on Mt. Nebo Road in Ohio Township.

A vehicle driven by Edward Niedbala, 47, of Kilbuck, was found stuck in a snowbank near his home on Feb. 14.


An Emsworth official has been named to a committee of the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs (PSAB).

Council member Paul Getz said at council's regular meeting on Feb. 10 that he had been named to the executive board of PSAB’s western region.

Getz said in a later interview that he will be working directly with officials in other municipalities in the region and taking any issues they may have back to the executive board.

Getz said that he was nominated for the position by a council member from Baden.


With the hope that other municipalities will follow suit, Emsworth Council voted last Wednesday to withhold approval of the 2010 Avonworth Community Park budget because of questions about payments that included some $5,000 in year-end employee bonuses


Students in the Avonworth School District will have only one day off for spring break because of the recent weather-related school closings.

Superintendent Dr. Valerie McDonald told school board members on Monday that schools were closed Feb. 8-11 last week, and had a two-hour delay on Feb. 12. Avonworth also canceled school on Jan. 8.

McDonald said the make-up days are March 29 through April 1, as well as Monday, April 5, leaving only Friday, April 2, as the day off for break.

Officials pre-selected the make-up dates last year when they approved this year's school calendar.


The Northgate School Board voted unanimously Monday evening to approve a preliminary 2010-11 budget that reflects a property tax millage increase of 3.1 mills.

The early adoption is required in order for the district to apply to the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) for exceptions that would allow Northgate to increase its property tax rate by more than the .98 mills allowed under the Act 1 index. Officials have cited increased special education and pension costs, as well as decreasing revenue from local taxes, as the basis for seeking the exceptions.


A number of properties were unanimously authorized by Emsworth Council last week to be sold at sheriff's sale.

The properties will be sold because of on-going maintenance issues or non-payment of taxes, officials said. Authorized for sale were properties located at: 8108 Ohio River Blvd., 8159 Ohio River Blvd. and 8294 Ohio River Blvd.


Bellevue's new solicitor is finding out the hard way what it means to earn his retainer in the borough.

Tom McDermott found himself uninformed and on the hot seat as Bellevue Council wrangled over several issues at its twice-rescheduled regular meeting on Feb. 16.


Two people were arrested for public drunkenness and disorderly conduct at the Camp Horne Road Giant Eagle store on Feb. 10.

Ohio Township Police say that Norman Terry, 26, and Ashlee Schaeffer, 19, both of Pittsburgh, were driving around the store in a handicapped cart, wrecking into displays.