Police chief opts for jury trial

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LEWISBURG — A suspended Union County police chief did not enter a plea agreement in court Thursday.  According to District Attorney Pete Johnson, 67-year-old Donald Zerbe of the Hartleton Police Department opted for a jury trial in Union County Court. Zerbe faces conspiracy and obstruction of justice charges.  He is accused of giving traffic violators the option of receiving a traffic ticket or making a donation of $150 to a borough playground fund.  Zerbe has been suspended without pay. (Codi Jade)  

Selinsgrove Green Bridge set to open Friday

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SELINSGROVE — Travelers in the Selinsgrove area will have a pleasant surprise Friday. The Green Bridge in Selinsgrove is expected to be open to traffic in both directions. PennDOT spokeseman Rick Mason, said the contractor will reopen the bridge to two lanes for motor vehicle traffic and lift the detour for northbound motorists by the end of the day Friday. Mason says work will continue through mid-October on the bridge, with a 10-foot lane width restriction. The next construction phase includes demolition and replacement of the sidewalks across the bridge. He said northbound traffic will also not be able to turn left onto Airport Road during the next phase of construction. Pedestrian access will be…

Two displaced by Union County fire

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ALLENWOOD – Two people were displaced by fire in Union County Thursday morning.  According to Emergency Services, the fire started around 9:45 a.m. in a trailer at 672 Devitts Camp Road near Allenwood.  No one was injured in the blaze, but one adult and one child were displaced.   They are being assisted by the American Red Cross.  The fire was fully involved when crews from Union and Lycoming County arrived on the scene.  (Codi Jade)

PSU victim’s attorney: Settlements dragging on

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SUNBURY – As several victims of Jerry Sandusky are still awaiting legal settlements, one attorney says Penn State is taking too long.  Attorney Cliff Reiders of Williamsport says he has spent many hours drafting the key elements of a settlement, but he and Penn State still can’t agree.   Reiders spoke about some of the items involved in the settlement.  “It’s not just a matter of money in these cases.  My client wanted a number of other things done.  He wanted to see a change in the system that was fundamental.  He would accept no sum of money without that change occurring,” Reiders said.  “He wanted to have a meeting with officials at Penn State…

CASA opens new location in Lewisburg

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LEWISBURG — The Susquehanna Valley CASA is growing.  A ribbon cutting ceremony was held at their new location in the Union County Government Center Thursday.   CASA, which stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate, serves children who have been abused and neglected.  Judith  Jones, director of the Susquehanna Valley CASA, spoke about what they do for the community.  “The purpose of this program is to give children a voice that have found themselves in a very over burdened court system, and they are in the court system because they have been abused and neglected by a parent of a care giver and they are now living in foster care,” Jones said.   Not only is…

State representative polling on gay marriage

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  SUNBURY – State Representative Lynda Schlegel Culver (R-108th, Sunbury) says it’s only a matter of time before the topic of gay marriage is debated in the state House. She said, “It’s very thought provoking. It makes some people very, very angry. It makes some people question what they believe in or who they are. It’s going to be a long process, but I have no doubt that at some time in the future, this will be coming up on the floor.”   Yesterday, Governor Tom Corbett’s administration filed a lawsuit seeking to block same-sex marriage licenses in Montgomery County. Schlegel-Culver is also against gay marriage in the state.   Schlegel Culver said, “I’m not…

Virus found in more local mosquitoes

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TREVORTON —Northumberland County is the latest local area to have West Nile infected mosquitoes.  The Pennsylvania West Nile Virus Control Program team has been testing bugs across the region this summer. Insects carrying the virus have recently been located in Ralpho Township, Turbotville and Zerbe Township. Mosquitoes with the virus were formerly found in Shamokin, Spring Township in Snyder County and Lewis Township in Union County as well. Officials believe the best defense against the virus is to not give mosquitoes a wet place to breed. Disposing of, cleaning, or turning over any water-holding containers is important. Officials also advise folks to prevent mosquito bites with spray containing DEET and long sleeves. For more tips…

Barletta says questions remain about Syria

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  SUNBURY – It was the Syrian government who carried out a chemical-weapons attack recently, killing thousands of people in Syria. U.S. government officials are now deciding what kind of, if any, response Americans will have to the violence.   U.S. Congressman Lou Barletta (R-11, PA) spoke briefly about Syria Wednesday at a town hall meeting in Sunbury. “What is disturbing to me is how we are going about this. We are telling them when we are coming, what time, how long and it is not for a regime change. I want to know what the purpose of it is then.”   Barletta says they hope to have more answers in the coming days, but…

Corbett’s staff: Gays are like ’12-year-olds’

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Attorneys for Pennsylvania’s Republican governor say marriage licenses given to same-sex couples in the state are invalid because the couples were barred rom marrying – just like “12-year-olds.”  Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration has filed a lawsuit seeking to block same-sex marriage licenses in Montgomery County. State attorneys say in a Wednesday court filing the licenses have no “legitimacy.” They compare gay and lesbian couples to children, who can’t marry because a 1996 law says marriage is between a man and a woman.  Montgomery County Register of Wills D. Bruce Hanes says the law is discriminatory. He’s scheduled to appear in court next week. Gay couples say a ruling against Hanes could…