Items filtered by date: Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Titusville FD Responds to Early Morning Smoke Investigation

The situation appears to be all clear for a Titusville home owner following an early morning call to the fire department for an apparent smell of smoke in the home.  At 4:14 this morning Titusville Fire Fighters responded to the Munn residence at 407 Allen Street, a single story brick home.  According to emergency radio transmissions, fire fighters could detect the smell of smoke in the home but could see any smoke.  Neither was there anything showing from the outside of the home.  About fifteen minutes later all responding units were put back into service including those on standby at Hydetown, Pleasantville and Cherrytree.  According to emergency radio, firefighters spoke with the individual at the home before departing the scene.  


Greenwood Twp Home Burglarized During Suspected Weekend Spree

Tuesday we reported to you local and state police are investigating a series of burglaries that occurred last weekend in the Greenwood Township Area. The Meadville state police are investigating an alleged burglary that occurred Saturday April 8th at a residence located at 15894 State Route 285 in Greenwood Township sometime between 6 pm and 7:30 pm.  That's the residence of Kimberly and Jeremiah Moon both of Conneaut Lake.  The Moon reported their residence had been burglarized and items were stolen from within. 


The state troopers report between last Friday and last Sunday numerous daytime burglaries have been reported in Wayne Township, State Route 285 in Greenwood township and Sadsbury Townships  and surrounding areas.  The state police are asking for any information regarding suspicious individuals seen in those areas last weekend.  Police say these individuals likely knocked on the door of numerous residences to determine whether or not the homes were occupied before committing the burglaries.  Anyone with information is asked to call the Pennsylvania State Police in Meadville at 814-332-6911.


Drunk Butler Co Man Charged w/ Agg Assault, Pointed Loiaded AR-15 at Trooper

After allegedly pointing a loaded automatic rifle, safety off, at a Pennsylvania State Trooper Sunday night, a Butler County man Aggravated Assault charges.  The Kittanning state police report the incident happened shortly after 11:30 pm  along the 300 block of Star Grille Road, in Winfield Township, Butler County.  The troopers , from the Kittanning Station,  were dispatched at 12:07 a.m. Monday morning to investigate an assault against two uniformed troopers from the Butler station located at 361 Star Grille Road near the city of Butler.  That is the address of Richard W. and Bridget Gniewkowski. 

According to a news release from the Kittanning Troopers, the Butler troopers were dispatched to the Gniewkowski residence for a burglar alarm.  As the Butler troopers arrived they checked the back door and confirmed it was secure, then proceeded around to the front door to make contact with the homeowner.  One of the Butler Troopers knocked on the door while the other watched the home through a sliding glass door.  That's when the trooper observing the residence through the sliding door saw a man pointing a black rifle directly at him through the sliding glass door.  The trooper immediately alerted his partner and both withdrew their service weapons and announced themselves as Pennsylvania State Police.  When they ordered the man inside with the rifle to drop his gun, he responded with profanity and refused.  The troopers continued to verbally identify themselves and ordered the man to drop his weapon.  Both troopers took evasive action, one however, observing the man with the gun inside the residence was still pointing the gun at him through the sliding glass door.  While continuing to verbally indentify themselves and ordering the man to drop his weapon, one of the troopers maneuvered to the patrol vehicle and activated the siren and emergency lights.  The trooper then switched on the Public Address system and again ordered the subject to drop the weapon and come out of the residence with his hands up.  Shortly after , the subject exited through the back door with his hands up and proceeded to follow verbal commands before being taken into custody. 


Police say Richard W. Gniewkowski, 53, was identified as the homeowner and appeared to be severely impaired, slurring his speech and unable to formulate coherent sentences.  An AR-15 style assault weapon was found to be loaded with the safety in the off position.  There were no injuries reported.  Gniewkowski is charged with two counts of Aggravated Assault, Simple Assault, Recklessly Endangering Another Person and Disorderly Conduct.  Charges were filed in District Court.  A Preliminary Hearing is set for Wednesday April 19th before Magisterial District Court Judge Sue Haggerty at 9 a.m.  Until then Gniewkowski is lodged in Butler County Prison, unable to post bond set at $25,000 straight.  In all Gniewskowski is charged with 8 criminal acts: two felonies, four misdemeanors and two summary charges.  He is not yet represented by an attorney.  


PENNCREST SD Board Mulls Tax Hike, Smaller Deficit

According to information published by, the budget news from PENNCREST School District in Cambridge Springs is better than last year at this time but not great.  Last year at this time the district faced a $5.4 million budget deficit.  This year as the PENNCREST School District struggles to put together a budget for the 2017-2018 school year the budget deficit is down to $1.3 million. 

Last year the district cut 37 teaching positions and did not take a tax hike.  This year there appears to be 1.79 mill tax hike on the table to balance the $52 million budget. 

Faculty cuts are currently not in the equation and neither is thought of closing any of the districts six schools. 

Driving the deficit are increasing retirement and charter school payments.  Those are fixed cuts and cannot by law be reduced while in the process of formulating an annual budget. 


The district will hold one more public budget session on Tuesday May 16th 6 pm at Maplewood Elementary School.  


TASD Mulls THS Carpet,Track Replacement Expenditure

When next the Titusville Area School Board  meets on April 24th in voting session, board members will be considering the approval of two buildings and ground resolution that together will represent spending of approximately $625,000 for asbestos abatement and carpet replacement and the replacement of the track at the Ed Meyers Recreation and Athletic Complex.

  To replace 17 year old worn carpeting in 31 second floor classrooms at Titusville High School is estimated to cost $225,000.  Buildings and Grounds Director for the Titusville Area School District John Cowan says the funds will come from money borrowed to fund capital projects, and the project itself is listed in the district's long range capital plan.  Speaking to school board members last month, Cowen said there have been seam failures and present carpet really shows its age and wear.  The carpet replacement will include asbestos abatement of the floor tiles beneath the present carpet and painting the affected rooms.  Carpet squares will be installed.  3600 square feet, through the Keystone Purchasing Network by Shaw Carpeting. 

Cowen said he is also preparing to expend close to $400,000 on replacing the present track at the Ed Meyer Recreation and Athletic Complex.  Here too, materials are available through the Keystone Purchasing Network but the work will be performed by Field Turf USA.  The latex surface will be removed, the track will be milled, sloping and undulation will be corrected, a base course of asphalt, black rubber coating and urethane coatings.  Cowan says it is not the most expensive way to go, but not the least expensive either.  The warranty only goes five years in any case but the manufacturer says the track should be good for about 11 years. 


In order to proceed with the work, the school district had to secure the approval of  Titusville City Council as the city leases the complex to the school district.  


Route 6 Improvement Project to Resume in Crawford County

A $1.5 million project that will give motorists a smoother ride on a section of Route 6 in Crawford County is scheduled to resume the week of April 17, 2017. 

The 1.68-mile-long road improvement project is located in Linesville Borough and Pine Township and will extend from the intersection with Airport Road to the intersection with Harmonsburg Road. 

Work in 2016 included drainage improvements, construction of curb ramps and updated signs and guiderail. Work in 2017 will include new road shoulders, road base repairs, milling, paving and updated pavement markers. 

Work is expected to resume the week of April 17, and be completed by June 1, 2017. 

The contractor is the Russell Standard Corporation of Union City, PA. The contract cost is $1,534,726.89, which is to be paid entirely with state funds. 

This project is made possible by Act 89, Pennsylvania’s transportation funding plan. 

No detours are anticipated, but motorists will encounter lane restrictions controlled by flaggers. 

PennDOT urges motorists to slow down when driving in work zones, and also to be alert to changing conditions, avoid distractions and to pay attention to signs and flaggers. Drive responsibly in work zones for your safety and the safety of the workers.

For more information on projects occurring or being bid this year, those made possible by or accelerated by the state transportation funding plan (Act 89), or those on the department’s Four and Twelve Year Plans, visit

Motorists can check conditions on major roadways by visiting 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 825 traffic cameras.

511PA is also available through a smartphone application for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1, or by following regional Twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website.

Follow local PennDOT information on Twitter at



PennDOT to Hold SKID Bike Demonstration, Motorcycle Safety Outreach

Wednesday, PennDOT will hold a motorcycle safety demonstration and informational event for media representatives. A spokesperson for Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program (PAMSP) will be on hand to conduct the demonstration and answer questions about Pennsylvania’s free training courses. 

WHAT: PennDOT will hold a motorcycle safety demonstration and informational event for media at the District 1 office.

WHEN: April 12, 2017; 1:30 PM – 2 PM


WHERE: PennDOT District 1 Office, Rearing Parking Lot, 255 Elm Street, Oil City, 16301


Pheasant Permit Needed In 2017-18

Adult and senior hunters in Pennsylvania who pursue

pheasants will need to purchase a pheasant permit in

addition to a general hunting license in the 2017-18

license year.

The Pennsylvania Board of Game Commissioners today gave final approval to creating a pheasant permit that would be required for all adult and senior hunters who pursue or harvest pheasants.

The permit would cost $25 for adults and seniors, including senior lifetime license holders. Junior hunters would not need a permit to hunt pheasants.

While Pennsylvania once was home to a robust wild pheasant population, in recent decades, pheasant hunting has relied entirely upon the stocking of farm-raised birds.

The Game Commission annually has raised and released about 200,000 pheasants for release on state game lands and other properties where public hunting is permitted. While the program has been popular with hunters, it has been costing the agency about $4.7 million a year. And without a permit, there’s no funding mechanism in place to help sustain it.

Meanwhile, fees for general hunting and furtaker licenses haven’t been adjusted for inflation since 1998, leaving the Game Commission in recent years to make difficult financial decisions, including budget reductions to the pheasant program.

In December, the agency announced it would close two of its four pheasant farms – a move that is expected to reduce annual program costs by about $1.7 million. Additionally, Game Commission staff have projected a pheasant permit would generate about $1.5 million a year in new revenue.


By making the program more self-sufficient, creation of a pheasant permit helps to ensure the future of pheasant hunting in Pennsylvania, the commissioners said. 


Drake Well Museum and Park to Host Volunteer Open House

On Thursday, April 13, Drake Well Museum and Park

and Friends of Drake Well, Inc. will host a volunteer

recruitment open house.  The event will start at 6:00

p.m. and is open to anyone interested in volunteering

at the museum. 

Drake Well Museum and Park, birthplace of the modern

petroleum industry, has many interesting and rewarding

volunteer opportunities for people of all ages and

abilities.  Volunteers can serve as museum greeters,

docents/tour guides, curatorial assistants, special event

assistants, gardeners and more.  Open house attendees

will have the opportunity to speak with museum staff

about their volunteer interests.  

The museum holds volunteer orientation, meetings and training sessions on the last Thursday of each month and at other times throughout the year.  Volunteers will be trained in their area of interest by staff and fellow volunteers. 

Drake Well Museum and Park educates, entertains and shares its unique story with nearly 40,000 visitors annually, including thousands of school children who visit during the school year. 

“We couldn’t offer the public all that we do without our volunteers.  Their enthusiasm and dedication drive the museum’s success,” said Sarah Goodman, Museum Educator. 

Anyone interested in joining Drake Well Museum and Park’s volunteer team should contact Sarah Goodman, Museum Educator/Volunteer Coordinator, at (814) 827-2797 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . 

Located off Route 8 south of Titusville, Drake Well Museum and Park is open year round.  Spring/Summer hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5:00 p.m.  Drake Well Museum and Park is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission in partnership with Friends of Drake Well, Inc. and is part of the Pennsylvania Trails of History® (



For more information about the museum’s volunteer program, visit, call (814) 827-2797, or find us on Facebook at Drake Well Museum and Park.

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