Red-breasted merganser by Matt Schenck. See story below.
ID thefts investigated in Potter and McKean Counties….Female relatives arrested following weekend physical altercation….Causer introduces bill to help EMS organizations…
Coudersport based state police are investigating a debit card theft victimizing a 39 year old Summit Township man. Troopers report a cyber thief used the victim’s debit card to steal $509.27 last week.
Both drivers escaped injury in collision last Thursday on Second Street in Harrison Township. According to Coudersport based state police, the collision occurred when 72 year old Richard Sharp of Ulysses turned too wide while leaving the Dandy parking lot to go north and pulled his Ford Focus in front of a Dodge Ram 1500 driven by Elizabeth Martin of Harrison Valley.
A Limestone, NY man has been arrested for drug possession on High Street in Bradford. State police at Lewis Run who were assisting Ridgway state police in locating a potential suspect and when located, he was allegedly found in possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia.
Two McKean County teens have been arrested for physical harassment for a scuffle taking place Friday afternoon on Phillips Street in Mt. Jewett. Troopers claim a 15 year old Mt. Jewett boy and a 17 year old Eldred girl assaulted each other during an argument.
Troopers at Lewis Run investigated an ID theft taking place Saturday afternoon on Route 59 in Keating Township. Authorities say a 56 year old Cyclone woman gave her social security number and bank account information to a fake PayPal account. Police warn the public of such public scams.
A 25 year old St. Marys man, whose name was not released, has been arrested for shoplifting at the St. Marys Walmart March 6. No further details were released.
Two relatives have been charged with physical harassment following an argument at 45 Beach Lane in Gaines Township Saturday evening. Troopers say when they arrived at the home, they found two women got into an altercation over one of them not going to an other family member’s funeral and arguing with family members about it. A witness told police that the argument escalated to slapping, hair pulling and shoving. Both Amber Washington, 34, of Fort Sill, OK and Alexis Bohny, 23 of Virginia Beach, VA were issued non-traffic citations for harassment.
State police at Mansfield arrested 72 year old John Fekety of Mainsburg with physical harassment for an argument taking place on the morning of March 9 at 155 Old Mill Road in Sullivan Township. Troopers claim the defendant shoved 71 year old Teri Artibee-Athans during an argument.
Drug possession charges are pending against a 33 year old Wellsboro woman. Mansfield based state police say they are investigating the case after receiving a Childline report.
Spring ng has sprung! Songbirds are calling, ducks are migrating, and soon the first wildflowers will be pushing up from the ground. Learn more about nature this spring by participating in an educational program with the educators at Sinnemahoning State Park. This week Sinnemahoning is offering both in-person and virtual educational programs for all ages.
March 23, 2022, 12:00 – 1:00 PM: Ducks, Loons, and Other Migratory Waterfowl – Virtual. Learn about loons, grebes, scaups, mergansers, and other waterfowl that travel through Sinnemahoning State Park during the spring waterfowl migration. This “virtual” program will be held online and will include a photo-filled PowerPoint presentation followed by question-and-answer session. Pre-registration is required in order to share the link with all who are interested.
March 26, 2022, 12:30 – 1:30 PM: Identifying Migratory Ducks. Mergansers, ring-necked ducks, scaups can look so similar floating on a distant shoreline. Learn to tell the difference by reviewing pictures and taxidermy of migratory ducks and other waterfowl that travel through north-central Pennsylvania during the spring migration. Indoor PowerPoint presentation good for all ages. Serves as a great preview for what participants might see on the lake during the Signs of Spring Walk that follows. No pre-registration required. Meet in the Wildlife Center classroom.
March 26, 2022, 2:00 – 3:00 PM: Signs of Spring Walk. Winter has finally loosened its grip on PA. Signs of spring are everywhere, especially if you know where to look. Take a walk with the park naturalist along the lake shore to find nature’s hints of the coming warm weather. This will be a fairly easy, slow-paced walk on mostly level surfaces. Some brief off-trail excursions may be required to look more closely at ducks in the water or wildflowers in the woods. Participants should wear sturdy shoes or boots and bring water. No pre-registration required. Meet at the Eagle Watch of the Lake Day Use Area.
March 27, 2022, 2:00 – 3:00 PM: Kids’ Storytime and Nature Walk – I Am Spring. Join the Sinnemahoning State Park naturalist for a book reading, outdoor activity, and simple craft based on the book, “I Am Spring” by Rebecca and James McDonald. Program intended for families with young children ages 3 -7. Older and younger siblings are welcome. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Participants should dress for the weather and be prepared for both indoor and outdoor activities. No pre-registration required. Meet in the Wildlife Center classroom.
To pre-register for a program, or for more information, please visit the online DCNR Calendar of Events at https://events.dcnr.pa.gov/sinnemahoning_state_park/calendar . If you need assistance with online registration, please call the park office 814-647-8401 and dial 0 for the front desk.
If you need an accommodation to participate in PA State Park activities due to a disability, please contact the park you plan to visit. With at least seven days’ notice, interpreters for people who are deaf or hard of hearing are available for educational programs.
With emergency medical services (EMS) agencies across Pennsylvania, and especially those in rural communities, struggling to keep their doors open, Rep. Martin Causer (R-Cameron/McKean/Potter) has introduced legislation that would boost Medicaid reimbursement rates for the life-saving services they provide. “Prompt response by an ambulance is the difference between life and death for many patients, and we have a responsibility to do all we can to ensure those services remain available to people across the Commonwealth,” Causer said. “Too many EMS agencies, especially in rural communities, are really struggling to keep their doors open, in part due to low reimbursement rates from the state that come nowhere near covering actual costs. My bill aims to change that.”
EMS providers have received only two increases in reimbursement for transporting individuals covered by Medicaid in the last two decades with the last increase taking place in 2018, again based on legislation Causer introduced. The current rates for Advanced Life Support (ALS) and Basic Life Support (BLS) services are $300 and $180 per trip, respectively. These rates are significantly below Medicare and commercial insurance reimbursements.
House Bill 2434 proposes to increase the rates for ALS to $400 and BLS to $325, representing a reimbursement of approximately 80% of the current base Medicare rate in Pennsylvania, plus a reflection of the change in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) since 2018. The bill would also offer an added premium for rural providers, similar to that offered through Medicare, to recognize the added costs those services face.
Finally, the bill would require that EMS agencies be paid for all loaded miles at a rate of $4 per mile. Currently, Medicaid reimburses $2 per loaded mile, but only after the first 20 miles. Future reimbursement rates for services and mileage would increase when Medicare rates increase based on changes to the CPI to keep pace with the increased cost of providing this service.
“EMS providers truly are the first line of contact when it comes to the emergency medical care Pennsylvanians receive, and it is critical these organizations are properly reimbursed to ensure they are able to continue their mission of saving lives,” Causer said.
Causer, an EMT himself, has long been a leader in efforts to support the state’s EMS providers. He sponsored the legislation to increase Medicaid reimbursement rates in 2018. He has also supported laws to reimburse for treatment, even when transport does not take place, and for direct payment by insurance companies to ambulance service providers.
The PA Department of Health reports, there have been 44, 050 Covid 19 deaths in the state to date. Deaths in the Black Forest Broadcasting Service area to date are mostly holding steady.
Allegany (NY) 152