Changes could be coming to how mail is delivered here in the Lehigh Valley. Under a new plan that could be implemented next year, all outgoing mail would be routed to Harrisburg instead of the facility in the Lehigh Valley. Postal Service spokesman Paul Smith says service would not be affected. "I think it's going to be improved service, efficient service, reliable service so that customers get their mail when they expect to get it," Smith says. Postal workers union member Chad Beer says that's not accurate. "You're looking at probably a five day delay is mail being delivered based on this plan," Beer says. Under the plan, all the Lehigh Valley's outgoing mail would be sent to Harrisburg, and then further to Lancaster if there's an overflow. Union members say that could overburden each facility.
Redeveloping the old Allentown State Hospital property has taken a step forward after an Allentown City Council committee gave preliminary approval to rezoning the property. City Center Investment Corp. wants the 200 acres rezoned from 'industrial' to 'mixed use overlay', which would allow the land to be used for housing, medical buildings, retail, walking and biking trails and recreation space. The price tag for the project would be $1 billion. A public hearing and final full-council vote are scheduled for December 6th.
Officials have identified the man who murdered his girlfriend before killing himself Tuesday night in Monroe County. Pocono Township police say 39-year-old Kyle Worrell, of Tannersville shot 37-year-old Leilani Ramos in a home on Ski Side Drive. Worrell was pronounced dead at the scene, and Ramos was taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Muhlenberg, where she died from her injuries.
For the second straight year, the Hallmark Channel is live streaming the Christmas season in the Christmas city of Bethlehem. Hallmark designated six cities it calls "Real Life Hallmark Channel Christmas Towns" and Bethlehem has made that list once again. Bethlehem's camera will be on Main Street just south of Walnut Street and pointed towards the Hotel Bethlehem with the Bethlehem Star visible in the distance. The live stream will be on from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day until Dec. 30. To view Bethlehem’s Christmas Cam, go to www.christmascams.hallmarkchannel.com.
Bethlehem’s former finance director has been sentenced to one year of probation after buying electronics with city money and then reselling them and pocketing the money. Mark Sivak pleaded guilty to taking and/or selling city property valued at nearly $18,000. That property included 31 cellphones and other electronic devices. Sivak must pay restitution, with credit given for $12,630 he has already paid and reimburse the city an additional $12,132 for expenses to cover the cost of its investigation. He also forfeited his city pension.
Minor injuries are reported in an early Thursday morning fire in Bethlehem. Firefighters were called to the Sherwood Apartments on East Boulevard around 4 o'clock Thursday morning. They put on the fire quickly, however some residents say it could be weeks until they're able to return to their homes. The cause of the fire has not been revealed.
The Thursday morning drive to work was complicated for some in Lehigh County. A car crashed into a pole in the area of Blue Barn and Memorial roads in Upper Macungie Township. Wires were down and the road was closed in the area during the morning commute. Police have not yet said what may have led to the crash.
One person is recovering at the hospital following a house-fire in Carbon County. The blaze broke out yesterday morning at a home located in the 500 block of East Kline Avenue in Lansford. Police say one person made it out of the house and was treated for burns. Authorities believe the fire started when the homeowner was trying to use a space heater, but turned on the wrong circuit breaker which caused the kitchen stove to ignite items on top of the stove.
The Northern Lights may be visible from parts of Pennsylvania in the next couple of days. Prime viewing is most likely tonight and more toward the northern part of the state. Late fall is typically peak season for the aurora borealis.
The Pennsylvania Trolley Museum, in Washington County, is bringing a piece of Pittsburgh and Steelers history back to life. Museum leaders are getting support from the Rooney family and the NFL to restore the 'Terrible Trolley'. The streetcar was painted in bold black and gold in 1980 and made countless trips across the city before it was retired in the 1990's. Those working on the restoration say the goal is to have the trolley car running again at the Washington museum before the next Steelers training camp.
State lawmakers have failed to advance a bill to ban smoking in all Atlantic City casinos. The bill failed to garner enough support to pass it out of the Senate Health Committee yesterday. Casino owners have fought the proposal, arguing it would put casinos' survival at risk. Supporters include many casino workers, who say the second-hand smoke puts their lives at risk. Committee Chair Senator Joe Vitale says there's a pretty good chance the bill will still be heard on the chamber floor next month.
New Jersey lawmakers have advanced a bill that would expand the state's Family Leave Act to small businesses with five or more employees. Under current law, the Family Leave Act applies to companies with 30 or more employees. The law requires companies to give workers up to 12 weeks within a 24-month period to care for a sick relative or child. The Senate has not yet heard the chamber's version of the bill.
Northwestern Lehigh is taking on Wyomissing tonight in the Class 3A state semifinal tonight at Kutztown University's Andre Reed Stadium. Northwestern Lehigh is a perfect 14-0. Wyomissing is 13-1. Kickoff is at 7 o'clock. The Tigers will be trying to buck history tonight. No District 11 team has won a PIAA football championship since 2010. No District 11 team has even been to a state final since 2015 and no Northwestern team has ever reached a state football final.