Easton Hospital is now under new ownership. Easton Hospital, along with seven others in three states were acquired by Steward Health Care. There are about 1000 employees at the hospital and the transaction is scheduled to close later this year. Tennessee-based Community Health Systems has owned Easton Hospital since 2001. Hospitals in Florida and Ohio were also part of the deal.
A former Hellertown councilman is facing charges for allegedly stealing from the borough's fire department. John Bate was arraigned Thursday for theft and other related charges for allegedly improperly filling out time cards while serving as the ambulance captain. Investigators say Bate filled out time cards for working between January 2011 and October 2015 despite not being present for shifts. They say he benefited a total of more than $38,000 from the bogus time cards.
A handful of injuries are reported after a Thursday morning incident at TEK Park along Hamilton Boulevard in Upper Macungie Township. Firefighters were called to the technology campus a little after 10 o'clock Thursday morning for what was described as a small chemical explosion. A small fire ignited when a chemical came in contact with the air. Some of those injured were taken to the hospital. Others were decontaminated at the scene. TEK Park offers roughly 500,000 square feet of office, lab and production space.
Northampton County Executive John Brown is seeking reelection. The former Bangor mayor defeated ex-Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan four years ago. Brown ran for Pennsylvania auditor general last year but lost to Democrat Eugene DePasquale.
Sen. Bob Casey has met with Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch. In a series of tweets, Casey said, "I appreciated the opportunity to meet with Judge Gorsuch. The Roberts Court has ruled overwhelmingly in favor of big corporations and Judge Gorsuch's judicial record suggests he may continue the trend. I discussed with Judge Gorusch some of his decisions pertaining to critical civil rights laws protecting individuals with disabilities. I have real concerns about Judge Gorsuch's philosophy and legal opinions." Gorsuch's confirmation hearings begin March 20th.
The murder trial for the man accused of killing a state police corporal in Pike County will start soon. The district attorney says jury selection will begin March 9th while the trial is scheduled to begin April 3rd. Eric Frein is charged with first-degree murder and several other offenses for the September 2014 killing of Bryon Dickson and wounding of Alex Douglass outside the Blooming Grove barracks. Jurors will be selected from Chester County.
Lehigh University senior Corey Schmalzle was on Jeopardy's College Tournament Thursday night. He says he owes his trivia knowledge to his mother. "My memory just kind of works where I can remember dumb, little things. I think I get it from my mom. She watches a lot of TV and movies. I remember all these random trivia tidbits and random conversations about trivia," Schmalzle says. Schmalzle finished third last night with a total of $11,000.
Pennsylvania is one of the worst states for structurally sound bridges. The commonwealth was second to Iowa in the number of deficient bridges in the newest edition of the American Road and Transportation Builders Association rankings. Nearly 20-percent of bridges in Pennsylvania need work. The Federal Highway Administration says an average of about $20 billion per year is needed for the next 16 years to fix the bridges.
A lawsuit against New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie tied to Bridgegate is moving forward. A Bergen County judge has ruled there's probable cause that the governor committed official misconduct during the 2013 George Washington Bridge Lane closure scandal. This is the second time the judge allowed the suit to proceed after being overturned on appeal. Christie released a statement calling the evidence used by the judge "nonsense." Bill Brennan filed the complaint claiming Christie knew about the lane closures, based on testimony from the governor's former aides who were later convicted in the scheme.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is signing off on a law that guarantees insurance coverage for people to access immediate drug addiction treatment. Christie touts the law as America's strongest addiction recovery reform. It also limits initial opioid prescriptions to only five days. Christie says that will help keep prescribed opioid pills out of the hands of children and the vulnerable.
Now you can use Uber in New Jersey to bring you food. The APP-based ride-sharing service is now offering food delivery in parts of the Garden State. It's called Uber Eats and is available in Hoboken, Jersey City and the surrounding area. There's a delivery charge of about $5. Uber Eats will also be hiring bike riders to deliver the food.