Last week after Allen High School was put on lockdown, we were told it was because of a nearby incident, not one inside the school. Now, it appears that may not have been the case. Today's Morning Call reports Allen Principal Cheryl Clark sent an email indicating two people were taken out of the building last Thursday. While neither police nor school administrators are saying whether one of those people had a gun, the Morning Call says a source says a student did have a loaded gun inside the high school. Initial reports from police stated a juvenile was taken into custody at nearby West Park.
ArtsQuest's plans for a new cultural center on the southside of Bethlehem have been given the green light. The Bethlehem Historic Conservation Commission has now approved ArtsQuest's $22 million plans, two months after giving it a thumbs down. That decision was overturned by City Council and now with the commission's reversal, the project is back on. ArtsQuest plans to tear down the Banana Facoty and replace it with a five-story building, which will include an outdoor arts plaza, larger classroom space, rooms for summer camps and a 100-seat comedy center.
Plans for the Martin Tower property in Bethlehem are being reviewed this week by the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission. A commission committee approved the Tower Place project Tuesday and the full commission will review the plans Thursday at 7 p.m. Tower Place includes two three-story medical buildings along with 312 apartments, a convenience store with a gas station, a hotel, grocery store, restaurant and office space. Only the medical buildings will be on the commission's agenda tomorrow. Martin Tower was the headquarters of the former Bethlehem Steel Corp. The 21-story structure was demolished in 2019.
Northampton County Executive Lamont McClure has vetoed Tuesday an ordinance that would raise the pay of the next executive to $105,000 from the current $85,000. In a 6-2 vote, county Council passed the increase lsat week, along with raises for the county controller and council members. None of the raises would affect current office holders unless they're re-elected. The raise would not take effect until Jan. 1, 2026. Six votes are needed to override McClure's veto.
Jenny's Kuali, a popular Malaysian restaurant on East Fourth Street in Bethlehem will be closing Saturday. The owners of the restaurant, which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, say they'll shift their attention to pop-ups, catering and cooking classes.
The City of Easton has been awarded a state grant for Vanderveer Park. The $100,000 award is part of a Greenways, Trails and Recreation grant. The project will provide a larger greenspace on the west side of the park, and includes an ADA-compliant walking path, trash cans, benches, and native foliage.
An organization with a focus on environmentally-friendly construction is hosting a forum on the topic this week. Green Building United is leading workshops at Lafayette College on Friday. The lectures are the first in a two-part series on developing warehouses with sustainable design and building concepts. The sessions run from 8:30 until 11:00 a.m.
The Pennsylvania Department of State is looking to get all eligible voters in PA registered ahead of the November election. As of a week ago, more than eight-point-seven million Pennsylvanians are registered with more than a month to go before the November 8th midterm election.
A new bill being considered in the statehouse would give parents more say in their kids' school sex education curriculum. Supporters gathered at the state Capitol Tuesday pushing for the new legislation. The bill would prohibit courses on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through fifth grade, among other things. Republican Representative David Rowe said parents are sick of curriculums that are more activism than literacy and it's time they have a say in the matter.
Two Pennsylvania senators want to recoup some of the $155 million in Pennsylvania Turnpike fees that went unpaid. Lehigh Valley Sen. Lisa Boscola is drafting a bill that would allow the state to garnish your lottery winnings or your state tax refund to settle unpaid turnpike fees. "You have to penalize them somehow and that's the only way to get people to pay," Boscola says. Northeast Pennsylvania Sen. Marty Flynn is writing a separate bill that would require anybody registering a vehicle in the state to be caught up on turnpike fees. "It's not fair to the taxpayers with that kind of money that could be used to repair the roads and bridges," Flynn says. Neither bill is expected to pass this year, but both senators hope it will start the process to the proposals being enacted as law in 2023.
The Lead-Free Promise Project is endorsing Senate Bill 522 to better protect children against lead poisoning. The "Childhood Blood Lead Test Act" would establish state requirements for lead testing that could potentially save thousands of children, according to supporters. Less than a third of Pennsylvania kids under the age of two were screened for lead in their blood in 2018. Less than one-fifth of children under the age of six have been tested.
Chipotle is paying up for violating New Jersey's child labor laws. The fast-food Mexican restaurant reached a historic settlement with the state's department of labor for nearly eight-million dollars. The deal stems from a 2020 audit that found more than 30-thousand alleged violations impacting minors at Chipotle's 85 locations across the state.
New Jersey is the fifth happiest state in the country, according to a study. WalletHub reports that the Garden State was beaten out only by Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, and Utah. In addition, it ranks second in the U.S. when it comes to its residents' emotional and physical well-being. On the negative side, however, New Jersey scored poorly in the area of long-term unemployment.
The FDA is issuing a warning over the latest deadly trend gaining popularity on social media. The agency says a new challenge is encouraging followers to misuse nonprescription medications. A popular TikTok trend that began circulating earlier this year shows users cooking chicken in a mixture of ingredients used in NyQuil and other similar cold medicine products. The FDA says boiling a medication could make it much more concentrated and change its properties in unpredictable ways.