Taxes are going higher in two local school districts. In a 5-2 vote, Easton Area School District's school board adopted its 2022-23 final budget on Tuesday night, with a 2% increase in taxes for property owners. The new budget comes in at more than $195-million. School property taxes are rising 2.3% for the 2022-2023 school year in the Saucon Valley School District. The district’s school board on Tuesday night approved the increase as part of the coming school year’s budget of more than $51-million. The budget was approved in a 5-3-1 vote.
We're seeing a little relief at the gas pump these days. AAA East Central says the average price for a gallon of unleaded in Pennsylvania was $4.95 on Tuesday, down six cents from one week earlier. It's still $1.76 more than on June 28th of last year however. In the Lehigh Valley, the average price dropped ten cents over the course of a week to $4.88 a gallon. That's $1.73 more than one year earlier.
The Allentown Health Bureau will administer the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to children under 5, as young as 6 months old. The Health Bureau says it will administer these shots on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 245 N 6th Street from 9 am to 3:30 pm. Appointments are not needed.
Lehigh Valley Health Network appears to have changed its mind on plans for a new hospital in the Poconos. LVHN now wants to open a one-story hospital and three-story medical office building off of Route 611 in Pocono Township. The facilities would take over the current site of Hunter Pocono Peterbilt, which is moving to Stroudsburg. Back in 2017, LVHN had plans for a new hospital to be built along Route 715 in the Tannersville area, but that hasn't happened yet and now it appears that project is all but dead.
One of the changes Gov. Tom Wolf says he'd like to see implemented in the state's new budget involves a minimum wage increase. He is calling for a wage hike that would get the state to $15 an hour by 2028. Nearly a million and a half Pennsylvania workers reportedly would see higher wages through the increase.
St. Sen. Doug Mastriano has gotten preliminary approval for his bill that would publicize the finances of some state-related universities. Senate Bill 488 was unanimously approved by the Senate State Government Committee on Tuesday. The measure would increase the amount of university personnel salary information that must be disclosed in user-friendly, searchable online databases. It would also mandate more access to budget and contract information.
Sheetz convenience stores are lowering their gas prices a bit before the July fourth holiday weekend. The company will reduce the price of fuel to $3.99 per gallon for unleaded 88 octane, which is known as E-15, and $3.49 for E-85. Sheetz points out that both blends contain more ethanol and aren't recommended for all cars. The prices will be available only through the July 4th holiday travel period.
A building owner has been charged with setting a fire that led to the death of a Philadelphia fireman. 28-year-old Al-Ashraf Khalil allegedly told investigators at the scene that he had been at his Philadelphia home when he received a call from a tenant in the apartments he leased out above the pizza shop, but Assistant U.S. Attorney Nelson Thayer Jr. says Khalil and an unidentified suspect were caught on video. "The video surveillance further shows that about 20 minutes later the two suspects leave the location shortly after which, smoke can be seen coming from the direction of the building and immediately thereafter, flames can be seen on the video," Thayer says. Days after the fire that killed Sean Williamson, Khalil booked a one-way flight from JFK International Airport to Jordan with a layover in Dubai, despite telling investigators he had no intention of traveling anywhere. Khalil was apparently blocked from entering Jordan and sent back to JFK, where he was arrested.
State lawmakers are considering a bill that could increase car insurance rates across New Jersey. Democratic state Senate President Nick Scutari's bill would require all drivers to have insurance coverage for personal injury. Scutari says the measure would increase injury protection to $25,000, if approved.
It looks like surgery will be needed to repair Bryce Harper's broken left thumb. Harper is not expected to miss the remainder of the season. Harper will reportedly have surgery today and will be out indefinitely. Harper thumb was broken when he was hit by a pitch Saturday night in San Diego.