Pennsylvania's acting health secretary says the Wolf administration has order COVID vaccine providers to make every effort to hold vaccine clinics at schools and universities that want one. Alison Beam says there will be a second part of the fight against the virus. "To supplement vaccinations, we're introducing a no-cost voluntary testing program for all K-12 schools outside of Philadelphia County because they receive separate funding, to enable voluntary COVID-19 testing to help kids in classrooms and COVID out," Beam says. Students in grades K-12 will be given the option to swab their own nostrils to test for the virus. Those samples will be grouped together and tested for the virus in pools. If a pool comes up with a positive test, it will be up to the school or local health officials to determine which steps would be taken next. These tests would have to be agreed upon by parents and are strictly optional.
Gov. Tom Wolf says 80-percent of Pennsylvania's 18-and-older population have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccination. To date, 64.3-percent of that age group are considered to be fully vaccinated.
Kutztown University is hosting the first in a series of COVID-19 vaccine clinics today. The Moderna vaccine will be offered free of charge to everybody ages 12 and older from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. in the student recreation center's east gym. Those who attend the clinic can receive either their first or second dose of the Moderna vaccine and must have a valid photo identification and their health insurance identification card. Those under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
The Pennsylvania Game Commission is assuring hunters there is no evidence deer can spread the coronavirus to humans. Game Commission Executive Director Bryan Burhans says there’s nothing to suggest deer hunters or other Pennsylvanians are at risk of contracting COVID from exposure to deer. This despite reports of white-tailed deer here and in four other states being found with COVID-19 antibodies.
The New Jersey Marathon is being canceled once again because of coronavirus. The event in Monmouth County that includes the marathon, half marathon and 5k race in mid-October was also canceled last year. With coronavirus cases on the rise in New Jersey, organizers say Long Branch officials made the decision to cancel large events for the fall. As of now, the Atlantic City Marathon scheduled for mid-October is still a go, and the New York City Marathon is still set to take place in November.
Pennsylvania's senators have mixed reactions to the fall of Afghanistan. Republican Sen. Pat Toomey says the miscalculation to rapidly withdraw our forces to meet symbolic rather than strategic deadlines has created a rapidly unfolding humanitarian disaster. Toomey then pushed for a swift and safe evacuation of American citizens and our Afghan partners fleeing the Taliban. Democrat Sen. Bob Casey says now that the Taliban has entered Kabul and taken control of the government, our allies and defenders of democracy in Afghanistan are in grave danger. He added that this isn't the time to finger point as the U.S. should focus on evacuating Americans, women leaders, activists and human rights defenders.
An early Monday morning crash was caused by a driver trying to make an illegal U-turn on Route 33. A car and a cargo van were involved in the wreck around 4 a.m. in the southbound lanes of 33, right after the Route 22 interchange. State police say the car took the ramp from Route 22 east onto Route 33 south, then it turned and tried to make a U-turn on the highway. Five people were taken to the hospital.
Before this year's edition was even over, Musikfest announced its dates for the 2022 extravaganza. Next year's Musikfest is set for August 5-14, 2022.
A Monroe County woman is facing charges for allegedly carrying a gun through the Lehigh Valley International Airport according to the TSA. The East Stroudsburg woman was taken into custody after TSA officers say they spotted the nine-millimeter handgun loaded with eight bullets in her carry-on bag while she was going through a security checkpoint.
Federal labor officials say the Giant Company shortchanged more than 3300 employees more than $165,000 in overtime pay during the pandemic. The company says the oversight was not intentional, and it has voluntarily resolved the issue. The Labor Department says Giant ignored lump sum bonus payments it gave its workers when it calculated their overtime rates during the pandemic. The employees are employed in more than 190 stores in four states, including Pennsylvania.
About 20 Pennsylvania firefighters have returned home from three weeks of doing battle with wildfires in Idaho. Those who took part say it was hard work but something they'll never forget. "The camaraderie that came out of this, I mean you come here pretty much strangers and you leave a pretty tight crew," one Harrisburg-area fireman said. The firefighters tackled two blazes: the Pioneer and the Trestle Creek Complex fires.