Here's what's trending for September 23.


The Allentown school board has selected a new superintendent. He's John Stanford, who spent 15 years in the Columbus, Ohio schools, Ohio's largest school district and also served as executive assistant for education to former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland. The board will vote on the employment agreement during its regular meeting tonight. Stanford will takeover as superintendent of the Allentown School District no later than November 15. His contract is reportedly for five years. He'll replace Thomas Parker, who quit earlier this year to take a job in Michigan.

A man wanted for attempted murder was arrested Wednesday in Slatington but he did not go quietly. The surrounding neighborhood was locked down during a six-hour standoff with police that included tear gas being sent into the home on West Church Street Timothy Barr was holed up in. The incident finally ended Wednesday afternoon around 2:30 when Barr exited the home and was arrested. He's accused of shooting at his children and their mother during an August 30th child custody argument in Bethlehem.

Wednesday, the Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed 4394 new cases of coronavirus in the commonwealth, leaving the state's overall total to date at 1,392,266. 66 additional COVID-related deaths were also reported Wednesday, putting the state's death toll at 28,998 since the pandemic began. Right now, there are 2421 people hospitalized with COVID-19, 609 of whom are in the intensive care unit.

117 Penn State University students who are unvaccinated and/or haven’t submitted proof of their COVID-19 vaccination have been put on temporary suspension by the university after missing several consecutive weeks of testing. That means they cannot attend classes, visit campus or attend university-related activities like football games. Suspended students living on campus must also find other temporary housing arrangements. Officials say they have done everything they reasonably can to ensure that these students are aware of their obligation, and the last thing they want is to suspend them.

A Pennsylvania attorney is vowing to defend service members that do not want the COVID-19 vaccine for religious reasons. This comes after the federal government ordered all military personnel to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Attorney Davis Younts says his clients feel this is an unjust and immoral order given that there are no long-term studies on the safety and efficacy of this vaccine. He added that there are Christians who are pro-life that have concerns and want to have their questions answered about the development of the vaccine.

Some Republican lawmakers and parents are criticizing New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy for requiring toddlers to mask up in day cares. The governor says the mandate is in line with guidance from the CDC and other states. Murphy says it brings officials no joy to be mandating masks, especially on little kids. It was Monday when the governor mandated masks across New Jersey day cares for staff, parents, and children over the age of two.

One of the last things we need right now is a healthy rainstorm, but Accu-Weather's Joe Lundberg says that's exactly what we're going to get. "As we get towards lunch time and into the afternoon hours, there's going to be about a six-to-eight hour period when it's going to be raining steadily and at times heavily and enough that there will be some flooding issues across the area and that's going to last into the early part of tonight," Lundberg says. Lundberg figures we'll get one-to-two inches before things dry out.

A struck gas line prompted evacuations in an Allentown neighborhood Wednesday morning. A natural gas line was hit around 9 a.m. in the area of Susquehanna and Front streets and crews evacuated two nearby apartment buildings as a precaution. Nobody was hurt.

Pennsylvania Secretary of Environmental Protection Patrick McDonnell claims a temperature increase of almost two degrees since 1900 is to blame for weather-related catastrophes. "That is increasing the intensity of weather events from this month's historic flooding and tornadoes in southeastern counties, to record water levels in Lake Erie in 2019 and to flooding that led to U.S. Department of Agriculture disaster declarations in 2018," McDonnell says. Because of that, the Wolf administration has come out with its Climate Action Plan 2021, which calls for action taken via legislation, government, industry, agriculture and community organizations. The plan also aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 26-percent by 2025 and by 80-percent by 2050 while still generating an estimated 42,000 new job annually.

As bad as 2020 was during the height of the pandemic, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is reporting that it had a great year. The LCB released its unaudited financial results from the fiscal year 2020 through 2021 which shows that they made record net income and the largest increase in annual sales in its history. The LCB made nearly $350 million more in sales than it did the year prior and its net income was over $56 million higher than the previous fiscal year.

Pennsylvania's legislative redistricting commission is making some changes to its decision to end prison gerrymandering. The five-member panel has voted to exclude any prisoner whose minimum sentence runs past April 1st, 2030 from being counted in their home county. this means that around seven-thousand state inmates will count toward their prison district when the next U.S. Census is due. Common Cause Pennsylvania says this move disenfranchises about 20-percent of the state's inmates as they don't feel adequately represented in prisons outside of their permanent addresses.

Data from PennDOT is indicating that roundabouts save lives. Officials say their data on roundabouts shows that it led to an overall decrease in fatalities, injuries and crashes. The department used police-submitted crash reports from 2000 through 2020 for their data and focused on 26 roundabouts on state routes and intersections that were previously stop or signal-controlled based. At 23 of the locations they studied, fatalities were reportedly reduced by 100-percent, suspected serious injuries went down by 81-percent and the total number of crashes lowered by 22-percent.

The Wolf administration is giving over $24 million to schools to help homeless children and youth impacted by the pandemic. Gov. Wolf says our commonwealth has a world-class education system, and this funding will ensure that all students are able to access and benefit from our schools, educators and extracurricular activities. Schools will use the funds to identify homeless or struggling youth and provide services for them, which includes better access to in-person instruction and extracurricular activities at school.

The bid is on. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and other city leaders hosted FIFA and U.S. Soccer yesterday as they put on a presentation to hopefully win the bid for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. Mayor Kenney said that the city couldn't be more ready to become the host site. Officials toured center city and were greeted by folks at Lincoln Financial Field. Philadelphia leaders and fans are hoping they did enough to land the popular sporting event.


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