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Avonworth School District's superintendent is the recipient of the Distinguished Educator Award.The University of Pittsburgh's Tri-State Area School Study Council has honored Tom Ralston -- pictured above with middle school students Cooper Groll, Olivia Perry, Natalie Grillo and Jackson Southern -- for leadership contributions to the school district, community, and/or educational research or publications. Ralston will be honored at Tri-State's 69th annual banquet on March 9 at the Edgewood Country Club.


Emsworth Council has a new member. Pictured here, Mayor Dee Quinn swears in new council member Jolene Bennett. Bennett takes over for former council member Geoff Barnes, who moved out of the borough recently. Bennett was chosen from among two applicants for the seat. The term of office will end in January, when the seat will be filled by the results of the November general election, or a new appointment for a two-year term.

Photo by Nancy Whyte for The Citizen


Four Bellevue Police officers were honored at the Bellevue Council meeting on Tuesday for their efforts to save two Dollar General employees and apprehend a robber.


Emsworth's Gibson Street Bridge project is nearing completion.

At the June meeting of Emsworth Council, Dan Lenz, chairman of infrastructure projects, said that a guide rail still needs to be erected. If the custom-designed guide rail is not finished, a temporary guide rail will be put up, he said.

After a guide rail is in place, Beech Construction will remove the temporary bridge, including about two feet of abutment on each side, Lenz said.


The Avonworth boys’ basketball team is proving itself to be the one to beat, as the Antelopes are in first place in their section, and taking out their opponents right and left as the season hits the midpoint. Pictured at left, Eric Gallupe (No. 31, red) is unstoppable during the team’s visit to Northgate Tuesday night.


Avalon Council gained some new members and new officers at its reorganization meeting Monday evening.

Taking the oath of office were new members Lee Nelson, William Pascale and Ryan Neal, who were joined by re-elected members Tom Lloyd and John Vetterly, and tax collector Ed Klicker. Pictured above being sworn in by solicitor Megan Ott are, from left, Neal, Nelson, Vetterly, Pascale, Lloyd and Ed Klicker.


New Bellevue director of administrative services Ron Borczyk, pictured above at center with council president Linda Woshner and vice president Jim Viscusi, is quickly settling in to his new job with the borough. Borczyk, who comes to Bellevue after working as the borough manager in Springdale, has a background in accounting and human resources in the private sector, as well as municipal government experience.


Avalon Police Chief Tom Kokoski (right) welcomes the borough’s newest full-time police officer. Chris Brown, who has been working as a part-time officer in Avalon for a couple years, was hired at Tuesday’s Avalon Council meeting in a unanimous vote. Brown is a former Marine who served in Iraq.


And you think you get a headache trimming your Christmas tree? A crew decorating the Bellevue Christmas tree Wednesday afternoon ran into a slight problem when the evergreen decided to topple over. The tree was soon upright, however, and firmly attached to the former Central Methodist Church building on Lincoln Avenue. Donated by WPAHS, the tree was the centerpiece of festivities sponsored by the North Suburban Chamber of Commerce Friday night.


Visitors to Bellevue’s business district have seen a dramatic transformation take place over the last few weeks, as the Central Methodist Church building is prepared to house a private event venue. The property has been purchased by Amos Harp Jr. of the North Side, better known as Professor Amos, whose cleaning products are featured on the Home Shopping Network. Once renovations and restoration are complete, the building will be used for weddings and banquets.


Big rigs used to be able to travel through the North Boroughs without too many concerns, due to the lack of a police officer certified in tractor-trailer inspections and safety. That is no longer the case. Avalon Police Officer Sean Khirley set up shop on Route 65 Wednesday, putting into practice the training he has received recently in an effort to make the highways safer and possibly even prevent some road damage in the borough.


Avalon officials showed their appreciation this week for two police officers injured during the pursuit of a suspected drug dealer earlier this year. Working in plainclothes along with Police Chief Tom Kokoski, Officers Sean Khirley and Walt Johnson pursued the fleeing suspect through a 20-foot jump and over a fence, finally nabbing him and recovering a quantity of suspected heroin. Both officers and the suspect were hospitalized after the chase. While Khirley has returned to duty, Johnson remains off-duty with a leg injury.


For the first time since March, the Borough of Bellevue has a director of administrative services on the job in the borough hall. Former Crafton manager Doug Sample began work Monday. The position has remained vacant since Connie Flasher resigned last spring.


With the recent personnel changes in both elected and appointed officials in Avalon, the borough council took the first steps to fill in the vacancies at Tuesday’s regular council meeting.

Dave Haslett resigned as the borough’s mayor last month in order to accept a position as the head of the borough’s public works department. He was honored Tuesday with a resolution recognizing his 17 years as an elected official in Avalon, both as mayor and a member of council.


Avonworth high school has a new club. The Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA) Club was unanimously approved by the school board at the April 18 meeting.

At the April 3 workshop session, numerous visitors’ comments – both for and against the proposed club – lasted nearly two hours. This week, similar comments, but overwhelmingly “for,” were voiced for an hour.


Because the Ben Avon Council meeting originally scheduled for May 16 would have coincided with the primary elections, the borough council voted unanimously at Tuesday’s meeting to change the date of its next meeting to Tuesday, May 9. It will be held at 7 p.m. at the borough building.

Faced with the same predicament, Avalon Council voted to change its next meeting to Tuesday, May 23.


The Northgate School Board recently approved several personnel-related matters.

The board voted to accept the retirement of middle/high school secretary Judy Collins, effective June 30, and that of Bellevue Elementary secretary Jeanne Nedwidek, effective June 15.

The board also hired Shaun Tomaszewski as director of curriculum and assessment, effective May 1. He will be paid $92,000.


Several residents of Newgate Road in Kilbuck Township reported criminal mischief on April 12. Their mailboxes had been vandalized sometime during the previous night.

A resident of Ohio River Boulevard in Emsworth reported disorderly conduct on April 13.

A resident of Ohio River Boulevard in Emsworth reported a disturbance on April 14.

A business on Huntington Avenue in Emsworth reported criminal mischief on April 15.

On April 16, a resident of Cobblestone Drive in Ohio Township reported a disturbance.


Avonworth High School students will receive some unanticipated “time off” as a result of a motion passed by the school board at the April 18 meeting.

High school principal Keera Dwulit proposed that following final exams on Wednesday, May 24, and Thursday, May 25, high school students be granted early dismissal. Dwulit stated she had reviewed attendance records in previous years and that there were extraordinarily high numbers of early dismissals requested by parents for high school students on similar afternoons.


A number of teachers will be found in different classrooms and teaching different subjects when the 2017-18 school year begins at Avonworth. At Tuesday night’s meeting of the Avonworth School Board, the following assignments were approved.

Marnie Arnold from elementary teacher to high school G.A.T.E. teacher.

Morgan Bassaly from fifth grade English/language arts to fourth grade.

Erin Cawley from K-6 computer science to technology specialist.

Stacey Hanny from sixth grade English/language arts to sixth grade social studies.


State Rep. Adam Ravenstahl has announced that Avalon Borough will receive a $55,800 state grant to develop a five-year financial management plan and operational strategy.

Ravenstahl said the grant, awarded by the Department of Community and Economic Development through its Early Intervention Program, will enable Avalon to deliver services more efficiently and effectively, as well as promote growth.


The popularity of the Airbnb home sharing platform is giving officials across the country fits, as traditional zoning codes struggle to adapt to the new property use, and citizens argue both for and against additional regulation.

Bellevue is jumping into the fray after residents of Meade Avenue continue complaints about parking congestion and noise as the result of an Airbnb property on their street.