A Monday evening fire has killed at least one person in the Poconos. The fire broke out just before 6 o'clock last night at a home on Cottontail Lane in Middle Smithfield Township. Investigators have not yet identified the victim, or released a cause of the fire.
A building in Allentown was evacuated Monday morning after fire broke out in a vacant room. The fire was reported around 9:30 a.m. at the West End Hotel on the corner of Madison and Chew streets. The smoke and flames were contained to one room on the third floor, but smoke spread down the halls. Firefighters had the fire out in about 15 minutes. While the fire wasn't that big, when a building inspector came to the scene it was determined the building isn't up to code and that meant the 40 people living there have been displaced and forced to find other accomodations.
An Allentown man is in custody for allegedly threatening his ex with a gun. Police say Matthew Mendez has been jailed on counts related to assault, harassment, making terroristic threats and weapons possession. Police say Mendez was carrying a gun Sunday when they caught up with him following a call about a domestic dispute on Hamilton Street. Officers purport the gun was already reported as stolen and Mendez's ex-girlfriend accused him of pointing it at her.
The Upper Saucon Board of Supervisors has approved a development plan for a new Wawa food market with gas pumps and an adjacent yet unnamed fast food restaurant with a drive-thru. Both are to be located on five acres at the southwest corner of the Route 309 South and Passer Road intersection.
The presumed soon-to-be owner of the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem says it's covering all the funeral costs for the 23 people killed in tornadoes that ripped through Alabama last week. The Poarch Band of Creek Indians says it is donating $180,000 to pay for those 23 funerals. Wind Creek Hospitality's $1.3 billion bid for the Sands is still pending approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Former Penn State President Graham Spanier is ending his appeal of a child endangerment conviction. It's believed the 70-year-old could be ordered to begin serving his four-months-to-one-year prison term in the near future. Spanier must spend at least two months incarcerated for his role in the coverup related to the Jerry Sandusky scandal.
Republican Sen. Pat Toomey remains non-commital on how he'll vote on President Trump's emergency declaration. "First of all, I'm not exactly sure what we're going to be voting on. So I can't say how I'm going to vote because there are a few moving parts still. Some of us are in discussions with the White House and the President, about this," Toomey says. He says President Trump may have misused the emergency declaration powers granted to him by using it to get around a deal on funding for a U.S./Mexico border wall.
A state lawmaker is introducing a bill he believes could save Pennsylvania's nuclear power plants. Rep. Tom Mehaffie says the Keep Powering Pennsylvania Act would add nuclear energy to the Pennsylvania Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards program. That would allow nuclear power to be incentivized like solar and wind renewable energy. The bill comes at a $500 million price tag, with Mehaffie adding that the cost of doing nothing is $4.6 billion. Those against the plan say Three Mile Island has been bailed out numerous times and still isn't profitable.
State lottery officials are saying a Columbia County convenience store has sold the largest Cash Five ticket in Pennsylvania history. The ticket, worth nearly $2.5 million, was sold at a Sheets in Berwick Friday night. The store will also benefit, as is scores a $10,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.
New Jersey lawmakers may be voting on the legalization of recreational marijuana in less than two weeks. Gov. Phil Murphy and the legislature's Democrat majority reportedly reached a deal Monday on the necessary legislation. A vote could happen as soon as March 25th in both the state Assembly and Senate and if the bill passes there it would only need Murphy's signature to become law. Murphy, Senate President Steve Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin are expected to publicly announce the agreement today.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy wants to change a tax incentive program in an effort to restart under utilized industrial properties. Murphy is calling on a renewed Brownfields Tax Credit as part of his overhaul in business tax incentive programs. Murphy is looking to phase out the current Brownfield Site Reimbursement Fund and replace it with what he calls competitive grant opportunities administered by the DEP and EDA.
Super Bowl LII MVP Nick Foles is finally getting his payday. Foles has reportedly agreed to a four-year, $88 million deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Foles has spent the last two seasons as the Eagles' backup quarterback, but started in the playoffs both years due to injuries to starter Carson Wentz. Foles guided the Eagles to a win in Super Bowl LII and was named MVP.