Fast Eddie's Fudge Factory: Get Real
Why did Gov. Ed
Rendell trash a more extensive, less positive state
audit of Medicaid error rates? Because it doesn't suit
his political purposes as well as a less extensive, more
positive federal audit that does.
Mr. Rendell says
elected officials of both parties should stop using the
state Department of Public Welfare, which administers
federal Medicaid funding, as a "whipping boy" because a
new federal audit found a 4-percent error rate in
Pennsylvania's handling of Medicaid cases.
But the feds' audit
covered just 500 cases. One released last month by state
Auditor General Jack Wagner -- which covered 13,789
cases -- told a far different story: a whopping
15.5-percent error rate.
Rendell says the state
audit is "out of line and out of whack." And it is --
with his priorities. But it's perfectly in line
with taxpayers' priorities. Mr. Wagner says
correcting a 10-percent error rate could save $436
million that could help close Pennsylvania's $4 billion
budget gap.Republican Gov.-elect
Tom Corbett will consider Wagner's Medicaid audit as he
targets all sorts of Harrisburg waste, fraud and abuse.
And expect savings to
be found that Rendell -- a truth-fudging tax-and-spend
Democrat to the end -- never did during his eight years
Tabled For Week
By Martha Knight
SMETHPORT—Bids totaled more than $1million when McKean County
Commissioners opened interior work quotations Tuesday
morning, relating to the new Domestic Relations
Apparent low bidders were Carl E. Swanson and Sons, Bradford,
general contractor, $295,975; Mazza mechanical Services,
Olean, N.Y., mechanical, $207,000; Dasco Plumbing,
Shippenville, plumbing, $$94,200; and NW Service Co.,
Warren, electrical, $479,000.
Some of the project components were said to have been bid in a
higher range than originally estimated, but
commissioners said the overall total seemed to meet
The commissioners tabled a decision to award contracts to the low
bidders on the Domestic Relations “interior fit-out”
work at the new Domestic Relations building. The shell
has been erected on county-owned land near the jail.
A decision on those contracts is expected to come at the
commissioners’ meeting on January 4, 2011. Meanwhile the
bids will be studied in detail, for compliance with
In the regular meeting that followed the bid opening, commissioners
authorized contracts and letters of agreement with the
following service providers for the Department of Human
Beacon Light Behavioral Health, JS Transport Services, Mars Home
for Youth, and foster parents Gary and Susan Tessmer and
DeWayne and Elva Werts.
A schedule of commissioners’ meetings for 2011 was adopted. It
calls for meetings to be held at 10 a.m. in second and
fourth Tuesdays, in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room in
the Court House, except for meetings that will be held
on January 4, April 5, July 19, October 4 and November
15 and 29.
Also adopted were the rules and regulations governing
commissioners’ meetings, which are similar to those that
have been in use right along.
Formal approval was given to salaries and wages for bargaining and
non-bargaining employees who are not elected officials.
All are receiving three percent increases. Those amounts
were calculated into the 2011 general budget.
The county budget itself and the tax levy supporting it were given
formal approval as well. There were no changes from the
proposed budget that had been set earlier. Millage is
unchanged, at 8.25, and the per capita tax continues to
be $5 per adult county resident.
A previous decision by the commissioners was enacted in the form of
a note resolution, which authorizes the borrowing of up
to $3.5 million, as may be needed for cash flow, from
PNC Bank’s Erie office, at a rate of 1.82 percent
A Tax and Revenue Anticipation Note is used most years. Whatever
amount is borrowed in the course of the TRAN is to be
repaid on or before December 31, 2011.
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will
be provided with the entire county tax parcel
geographical information system (GIS) data layer.
Commissioner chairman Joe DeMott observed that this is
in keeping with a policy recently adopted by the
Cleaning contracts were renewed, for the Children and Youth
Services Building, the 911/Emergency Management Agency
Building and the Old County Home county offices. The
“newer” building costs are pegged to $25 per day, and
the other areas are to cost $10 a day for each area.
A new contract with waged employees of the McKean County Jail was
ratified. The AFSCME unit had voted its approval Monday.
The four-year agreement calls for three percent increases in wages
for 2011 and 2012, and 3.5 percent in 2013 and 2014. The
shift differential is increased from 50 cents to 60
cents per hour.
Also, the longevity wage increments of $110 per increment year
(after the first five years of employment) will continue
through 25 years henceforth, rather than 20. The records
clerk position was upgraded 60 cents an hour.
An invoice from Bradford City for $16,834 was approved. It
represents payment for completion of its 2010 project
funded under the Liquid Fuels program.
Under the Commissioners’ Comments item on the agenda, DeMott and
fellow commissioners Judy Church and Al Pingie said they
wish county residents a happy new year.
Under general public comments, Bruce Stone of Port Allegany and a
reporter asked about the Area Transportation Authority
(ATA) service. DeMott noted that he has been in contact
with the director concerning the services the six-county
agency provides within McKean County.
Penn State Coach Joe
Paterno Sees No Reason To Leave Coaching After The
TAMPA, Fla. --
Joe Paterno and his family
maintain Saturday's Outback Bowl
contest with Florida is merely
the next game in the 84-year-old
Penn State coach's legendary
A very popular
Internet-driven rumor, however,
maintains it is Paterno's last
game for health reasons.
for 2011 is the hot topic
down here and all throughout the
Nittany Lion nation.
The Penn State
coach, whose current contract
expires at the end of the 2011
season, battled an intestinal
bug throughout last spring and
summer and was slowed by a cold
during the final month of the
Lions' 7-5 regular season.
But if there is a
plan in place for Paterno to
step down shortly after the
Outback Bowl, neither Joe, nor
his wife Sue, nor daughter Mary
Katherine Hort is aware of it.
"I don't know
when I'm gonna get out,''
Paterno said Tuesday afternoon
during a joint news conference
with Florida's 46-year-old head
coach, Urban Meyer. It will be
Meyer's last game at Florida, by
"People think I'm
going to quit this year or next
year, I haven't even thought of
it,'' continued Paterno, who, by
the way, also said he would
return for 2011 a few days
before PSU's 28-22 loss to
Michigan State in the Nov. 27
"I honest to
goodness have not thought of
But the rumor
will not go away. Philadelphia
Daily News sports columnist Bill
Conlin, one of the most
respected writers in the
business and a man who used to
cover PSU and Paterno, told
Paterno he did a Google search
of "Joe Paterno latest rumors".
Conlin said it
produced 393,000 responses.
Conlin asked Paterno about the
effect of social networking on a
person's privacy. In this case,
a famous person's privacy.
"I just don't
particularly like the idea of
people having that much access
to anything they want to put on
there [the internet],'' Paterno
A couple of PSU
media members discussed the Joe
Paterno retirement rumor with
Paterno's wife, Sue, and
daughter, Mary Katherine Hort,
during a public appearance
Monday in Tampa.
Sue Paterno said
she field a call at the Paterno
home in State College wondering
about Joe Paterno's condition
considering he was in the
One problem --
Joe wasn't in the hospital.
"I told people
when they called last week, I
said, 'He's fine, he's in
Florida,' '' Sue Paterno told
Fightonstate.com, a well-known
Penn State Internet site.
They said, 'No,
he's not, he's in the hospital.'
I said, 'No, he's in Florida …
you don't know what you're
talking about.' I knew they were
calling me a liar. But I knew
where he was.''
"It's not his
planned last game,'' Hort said.
"We got a big
problem in State College last
week,'' Joe Paterno said.
"Somebody said I
was down at the Hershey [Medical
Center]. … Geez, I was home
chewing out somebody for being
late for a [team] meeting. It's
ridiculous. I don't know when
I'll get out of it. And I
haven't even thought about it.''
football's all-time wins leader
-- 401 and counting -- said his
high comfort level at Penn State
is a major reason why he has
continued to lead the Penn State
program. Lions defensive
coordinator Tom Bradley was a
finalist for the Temple head job
that recently went to Florida
assistant Steve Addazio. But
Bradley, a PSU grad who has
served under Paterno for 32
years, is staying, and so is
everyone else on Paterno's
"I haven't even
thought of [leaving],'' Joe
Paterno said Tuesday.
around me is very stable. The
athletic director [Tim Curley]
was a kid that I recruited as a
walk-on, the coaches have been
with [me], I haven't had a lot
of guys leave. Our president
[Graham Spanier] has been with
us now maybe 14-15 years.
"We have a lot of
fun together. I don't see any
reason to get out of it yet.''
New Owners - Jamie Evens, Josh McNeil and
Kerry Hawver are the new owners of the Seneca Inn
on Route 6, just outside of Port Allegany. The trio promise the same great
pizza and burgers along with a new menu. The Seneca Inn will be open seven days
a week at 3:30 p.m. The family-friendly business is available for parties
of all kinds including bachelor, bachelorette, graduation and birthdays.
Take outs are available. On New Year's Eve, the Seneca Inn will feature DJ
Kerry. No reservations are needed. A grand opening is being planned for
January 15, 2011. To place an order, book a party or for further information,
call the Seneca Inn at 642-7679.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
For PACS - Santa and Mrs. Claus made a stop at Citizens and Northern
Bank last week to wish the employees and customers a Merry Christmas. Children
were invited to visit with Santa who thanked everyone for their donations to
PACS (Port Allegany Community Services). Pictured with the jolly couple are
Nancy Hardes, Penny Barr and Peggy Majot.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
- Sunday School student, Jena Young (middle) is pictured with November UNSUNG
HEROES Bryanna Evens and Marianna Seefeldt.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
Start Visitor - Lilly Babcock welcomed a special visitor at the
Northern Tier Community Action Corp Port Allegany Center when her great-grandma
Nancy Burrows came to visit. Mrs. Burrows shared lunch with Lilly who was the
star of the week. Pam Fischer
Celebrate - Felicia Culver, Anna Mae Commino (seated) and Jackie Songer are pictured with Santa Claus during the Senior Center's annual Christmas
dinner and party. The group presented center director, Angie Culver, with
Christmas gift and their appreciation for her work throughout the year.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
Tea - PAES Kindergarten students performed several holiday songs for
their parents Tuesday afternoon at the school. It was a busy day for the
students who had an early morning visit from Santa Claus. More photos from this
event will appear on this week's picture page.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
For Head Start Kids - The Sartwell Creek Care and Share Quilters
presented students at the Northern Tier Community Action Corp. Port Allegany
Head Start Center with custom designed pillowcases. The students, pictured with
their teacher Cathy Nelson, are showing off their new pillowcases.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
- Susan Roboski is pictured with Unsung Hero recipients, Joel and Dorothy
Also named as December Unsung Heroes were Mike Fischer, Sr., and his three
daughters - Cathleen Bosworth, Alexis Reed and Kacie Fischer. To nominate an
Unsung Hero in your life, contact UMC Sunday School Superintendent, Pam Fischer.
The December 2010 UNSUNG
HEROES were recognized during the morning worship service at the Port Allegany
United Methodist Church. Reader and Adult Sunday School Teacher, Susan Roboski
made the presentation reading the following,
"As we name our December
2010 UNSUNG HEROES, we honor some of our own…
The first couple was to be
honored earlier this year, but instead they were out of the country. The
wife is very active in the church serving in many positions over the years.
She is also an active member of the community and currently serves on the
Library Board. She and her husband were involved in the recent Moments to
Remember program which raised money for the library. The husband plays
guitar with a couple different groups who have volunteered to play at Concerts
on the Square and other community events. He has shared his musical
talents in this church. Our first recipients for December are Joel and
It has become a tradition to select a family of UNSUNG HEROES in
the month of December. The Stehle family was named in 2008 and the Kysors
were our 2009 family.
What is unique in this
year's selection is that the mother and son of the family have already been
recognized as UNSUNG HEROES. The father was actually nominated months ago
after making one of his almost-weekly deliveries to his Sunday-school teacher
wife. She mentioned to her class how he was always helping out in some way
or another but never got any credit for doing so. The kids then suggested
that maybe he should be recognized as an UNSUNG HERO.
While he didn't personally
volunteer, for more than 30 years he has given countless hours for organizations
and activities including Liberty Majorettes, Girl Scouts, PTO/Elementary
Boosters, Chamber of Commerce activities, Tiny Tot Contests, Glass
Festivals, PAES Fundraisers, Music Boosters and more. At church he has
done more than his share of painting Sunday school rooms, mopping floors,
hanging bulletin boards and moving furniture between rooms. He cooks and
delivers turkeys for the Thanksgiving Feasts and for the past several years he
and Mr. Barnard have delivered hundreds of gifts to Adopt-A-Family recipients.
He has helped to raise
thousands of dollars for charities like Make-a-Wish, Christmas House, and Kids
with Cancer through his love of motorcycle riding.
Like their father, the
daughters of the family also spent countless hours helping with the activities
of their mother. They all served as assistant teachers and/or nursery
volunteers for Community-wide Vacation Bible School for several years.
The eldest of the three
girls proved to be very good with children while still in elementary school when
her sister arrived. She was a good big sister and mother's helper. A
couple of years later, when the youngest member of the family came home from the
NICU and weighing a whopping 4 pounds, 10 ounces, she handled her sister with
ease while most adults were afraid to even hold the tiny baby.
She began her own family at
an early age and once again proved her ease at caring for children. As a
young wife whose husband was serving with the U. S. Army in Operation Desert
Storm and later attended college out of town and worked on the road, she handled
responsibilities that went far beyond her years.
Currently, she is co-owner
of a child care facility and has been known to go above and beyond the call of
duty, having kept one of the children overnight when the parents were in
desperate need of a sitter or keeping the center open after hours so a parent
could attend a school meeting.
Her sister and co-owner of
the center, has also been known to go above and beyond her duties at work.
She grew up in this church, attending Sunday School and Youth Group. She
was a Peer Helper during her high school years and gave many hours of work
through that group.
As an adult, she traveled
from Bradford to Port Allegany each week to teach the Pre-school/Kindergarten
class at this church. For many years, she has helped organize and wrap
gifts for the Adopt-a-Family and help shop for the gifts not taken by members of
She graduated from college
while carrying her first child, started a new business while carrying the second
and moved into a new home while carrying her third, all the time working one and
sometimes two jobs.
The youngest of the three
girls also proved to have a knack with children. She became an aunt at the
age of 3 and would feed her nephew and help to change and care for him as much
as the adults would allow. When she was old enough to do so, she and her
sister would volunteer their babysitting services caring for their nephews
during summer vacation so their mother could work without the burden of child
care costs. She babysat on a regular basis for many families and often
cared for these children on her own time to give their mothers a break.
Like her sister, she was a
member of the PAHS Peer Helpers and also taught Sunday School at UMC for four
years while attending college.
As an adult, she works for a
school district running a day care center
the mothers of the center's children. She often volunteers her time caring
for children when their parents are in need
of a break or need child care so they can go to work.
She has had more than her
share of medical issues and earlier this year suffered a loss that no parent
should have to deal with, yet, she did it all with remarkable dignity and grace.
Our Unsung Heroes for
December 2010 are Mike Fischer, Sr., Cathleen Bosworth, Alexis Reed and Kacie
Fischer." Pam Fischer Photos/Story
Stops At PAES - Santa Claus made a surprise stop at Port Allegany
Elementary School Tuesday morning. His visit delighted Kindergarten students
who received special candy canes that were reported to be made by elves in the
North North Pole. Each student had a chance to sit on Santa's lap
and give them their wish list in person.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
Friendship Tea At Smethport Head Start - Parents and grandparents
invited to a Friendship Tea at the Northern Tier Community Action Head Start,
Smethport Center. The visitors enjoyed beverages and cookies and of
course, friendship! In the second photo, children are shown giving presents
they choose for a friend while learning to be patient to say thank you.
Pictured with the children is Dawn McNeil.
Pam Fischer Photo/Story
Love - Led by the Church Janitor and the Kid, played by Kyle Hunt and
Frances Kujawski, Tree-mendous Love...from the Manger to the Cross was presented
December 20 at Church of Gabriel The Archangel. While telling the story, the
tree was decorated by students from Pre-school to Senior High. Refreshments were
served following the performance. More photos from this event will appear
on this week's picture page. Pam Fischer
New Pitt Football Coach Released
From Jail, Fired
The University of Pittsburgh fired its new
football coach late today, shortly after he was released from
jail in Indiana after being charged with domestic battery.
Pitt Chancellor Mark Nordenberg released the
following statement this evening regarding Mike Haywood, who was
named the new football coach last month:
"After careful consideration of recent events,
the University of Pittsburgh has dismissed Michael Haywood as
its head football coach, effective immediately. He was advised
of that action this afternoon.
"To be clear, the University's decision is not
tied to any expectation with respect to the terms on which the
legal proceeding now pending in Indiana might ultimately be
concluded. Instead, it reflects a strong belief that moving
forward with Mr. Haywood as our head coach is not possible under
the existing circumstances.
"This is a matter of real regret for the many
people at Pitt who had looked forward to working with him.
However, head coaches are among the University's most visible
representatives and are expected to maintain high standards of
personal conduct and to avoid situations that might reflect
negatively on the University.
"We will immediately re-open our search for a
head football coach, expanding the process to include a larger
pool of candidates. Our goal is to move swiftly, but prudently,
to find the right person to successfully lead the Pitt football
program for what we hope will be an extended period of time."
Pitt spokesman E.J. Borghetti later released
another statement, this one affirming the university's support
for Athletic Director Steve Pederson, who hired Mr. Haywood:
"Mr. Pederson has played a key role in elevating
Pitt's athletics programs, remains an important member of the
University's senior leadership team and continues to enjoy the
full support of the Chancellor."
Mr. Haywood was released from St. Joseph County
Jail at 3:06 p.m. today after posting $1,000 bond, according to
a jail official.
Mr. Haywood was arrested Friday afternoon and
charged with domestic battery. St. Joseph County police were
called to Mr. Haywood's home on Hawthorne Meadow Drive in South
Bend, and a woman with whom Mr. Haywood has a child told
officers that Mr. Haywood "held her in a choke hold" and pushed
Mr. Haywood originally was not going to be
released until after his arraignment Monday at 1:30 p.m., a jail
official said this morning. However, that changed when the St.
Joseph County prosecutor increased the charge from a misdemeanor
to a felony, according to the jail, allowing Mr. Haywood to be
Under Indiana state law, domestic battery is a
Class A misdemeanor, which carries a penalty of up to one year
in jail and a maximum $5,000 fine. If the alleged battery
occurred in the physical presence of a child who is younger than
16, it can be charged as a Class D felony.
According to the jail, the St. Joseph County
prosecutor increased the charge to a felony because the alleged
battery took place in the presence of Mr. Haywood's 21-month-old
son. A Class D felony conviction could mean a jail term between
six months and three years, with an advisory sentence of 1 1/2
years, and a maximum $10,000 fine.
When the alleged battery was classified as a
misdemeanor, according to a jail official, Mr. Haywood's bond
could not be posted until a no-contact order was filed and he
was arraigned. When the prosecutor's office increased the charge
to a felony, it issued an arrest warrant, which, according to
the jail, established a bond and court date and allowed Mr.
Haywood's bond to be posted.
Mr. Haywood will still appear in court for
arraignment Monday at 1:30 p.m., the jail confirmed.
Contacted in Houston, Texas, where she resides,
Mr. Haywood's mother said the family did not wish to make a
statement because they had not spoken to him.