TWO FIRES RULED AS ARSON

Fire investigators have ruled that two city fires within a week of each other late last year were intentionally set.  The first was on November 25th, a fire which destroyed a home occupied by Freddie Jones at 906 Seneca Avenue in Newberry  The second was on December 2nd at an apartment house at 1524-1536 Memorial Avenue which briefly trapped one of the tenants and her great grandson before they were rescued of a balcony. That fire caused upwards of $100,000 in damage.  Anyone with information is asked to Agent Trent Peacock at 570-327-7575.

REPORT OF SHOTS FIRED

Williamsport City police were called out before midnight to a report of possible shots fired in the Newberry section of the city.  Units were dispatched to the 100 block of Laurel Run Circle.  The county 911 center received multiple callers and there was a report of a vehicle leavin the area at a high rate of speed.  No word on if anyone was shot, or if it was indeed gunshots.  No other information is available at this time and the incident is under investigation.

CLINTON COUNTY DRUG BUST

A Clinton County man is jailed awaiting arraignment on multiple drug and weapons offenses following a raid at his mobile home yesterday by law enforcement.  Early on Wednesday morning, members of the Clinton County Drug Task Force served a search warrant on the Woodward Avenue mobile home in Woodward Township of Keith Freeman turning up methamphetamines, crack cocaine, marijuana, other drug materials, cash and five electronic stun guns.  The raid was conducted following an investigation into Freeman’s activities.

BANK ROBBERY IN BERWICK

Police in Columbia County are investigating a bank robbery which occurred in Berwick on Tuesday afternoon.  Police say that a man walked into Fulton Bank along South Poplar Street around 3pm telling employees he had a bomb and demanding money.  The man then got away on foot with an unreported amount of cash.  No one was hurt in the incident and anyone with information is asked to contact the East Central Emergency Network at 570-784-6300.

STORM IS A COMING

Our area is getting set for a storm which could dump a large amount of snow on the area this weekend.  1 to 3 inches are expected tonight into tomorrow, but a storm which is expected to start on Saturday afternoon and run into Sunday could dump a foot or more.  PennDOT and municipal crews will be at ready and will be busy trying to clear roadways and keep things moving smoothly, but you are reminded that if you don’t have to go out this weekend to stay in until things can be cleaned up,  We will keep you updated into the weekend. 

COUNCIL MEETS TONIGHT

Williamsport City Council will meet tonight.  Amongst their agenda is to take a look at an ordinance which would clear up boundaries at the park in Newberry named after former mayor Phillip Preziosi.  Council will be asked to amend the ordinance over what city officials are calling a minor error.  Council will also take care of some other pretty routine items on their agenda. They meet at 7:30 in City Hall Council Chambers.

GRANT TO HELP WETLANDS PROJECT

A project at an area middle school will not only help to capture storm water runoff but will also serve as a classroom for students there.  The state has approved a $17,920 dollar gran for the Wetland Restoration Project at the Eichorn Middle School in the Lewisburg School District in Union County.  The money will go to the Union County Conservation District and will be used to enhance and expand existing wetland on the middle school property.  The site will also be used as a living laboratory for students there. 

RECREATION GRANTS TO BE MADE AVAILALBLE

23rd district State Senator Gene Yaw reports that grants will soon be available to help plan, acquire and develop parks, recreation facilities, trails and help with conservation.  The money which comes from DCNR will be made available for counties, municipalities and municipal agencies, pre-qualified land trusts, non-profits and other eligible organizations.  A pre-application workshop will be held on January 20th at 10am.  To sign up applicants can visit DCNR’s Calendar of Events page on their website at events.dcnr.pa.gov.

PARK AVENUE REVITALIZATION OPEN HOUSE

Residents in the city of Williamsport interested in what is going on with the revitalization of the Park Avenue Neighborhood can attend another open house next week. A draft stabilization plan will be unveiled.  Officials are hoping to identify housing needs, the neighborhood identity, connectivity, and potential future development in the neighborhood along Park Avenue from Walnut east to Hepburn Street and from Park Avenue north to Brandon Avenue.  The open house is set for next Wednesday from 5 to 7 pm at the YMCA at 641 Walnut Street.