Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Locomotive production to plummet in 2010, GE says

Next year will be a bleak one for freight locomotive builders, according to GE Transportation.The company expects locomotive production at its Erie, Pa., manufacturing plant to drop about 44 percent this year to 485 units, then fall another 50 percent or more in 2010 as the builder primarily works off its order backlog, GE Transportation officials recently told Dow Jones Newswire."There are no [U.S.] customers who are actively purchasing right now," said GE Transportation President and Chief Executive Officer Lorenzo Simonelli. "North America, from the standpoint of purchasing locomotives, is not moving."Several Class Is have begun to bring stored locomotives back into service. Although that’s a positive trend, it won’t impact new orders until no locomotives are in storage, said Simonelli.In addition, freight volumes “going from negative 20 percent to negative 16 percent don't do much for a manufacturer," he said. Despite the near-term economic environment, GE Transportation is optimistic about the long-term transportation sector and rail industry because of global transportation infrastructure needs and rail’s standing as one of the most fuel-efficient modes, said Simonelli.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Pizza Palace Dave competes in Orlando!

By Sara Eddy OkerlundOlean Times Herald
Dave Smith, owner of Pizza Palace Plus in Emporium, Pa., competes in the dough-stretching competition in a pizza show held recently in Orlando, Fla. Photo submitted

More News
This guy knows how to stretch his dough
EMPORIUM, Pa. - Yes, the United States has a pizza team - and one area resident is a member of it.David Smith, who with his wife Marlene has co-owned the Pizza Palace Plus restaurant in Emporium since August 2001, has actually been a member of the team since 2007 when his cajun chicken pizza was tagged best in the nation.
Mr. Smith once again traveled to the Orlando (Fla.) Pizza Show where the U.S. Pizza Team recently held its tryouts, and bolstered his standing among the best of the nation’s pizza industry. For this year’s culinary contest Mr. Smith submitted a stuffed-mushroom pizza, which was judged to be the ninth best pie this time.Mr. Smith reasoned, “The judges were looking for thin crust and simplicity, and mine was a thicker crust loaded with toppings.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Red Raiders down Brockway 28-20

BROCKWAY – Two fourth-quarter touchdowns, including a go-ahead 27-yard run by quarterback Jason Blose with 3:40 left in regulation gave the Cameron County Red Raiders a come-from-behind 28-20 win over the Brockway Rovers Friday night.
The Red Raiders (3-0) intercepted Brockway quarterback Derek Buganza three times. The final one, by Blose himself, set up his own TD run. Ryan Grimm caught a two-point conversion pass from Vince Summers to put the Red Raiders up
22-20 with 3:40 remaining. Cameron County added another Blose TD run with 2:42 to set the final score....MORE
photo: Hunter Bardo avoids the defense while returning a Brockway punt more photos at

GE Transportation cuts more than 1,500 Pa. jobs

ERIE, Pa. - GE Transportation is cutting more than 1,500 jobs in northwestern Pennsylvania.
The company announced Tuesday that it would make permanent 1,200 temporary layoffs that were announced in February at its factory near Erie, which makes electric locomotives. In addition, 230 hourly jobs and 50 salaried jobs are being cut there. Another 200 people are losing their jobs at an engine plant in Grove City.
Human resources manager Shaun Francis says the company was hoping that orders would improve but cut the jobs when that didn't happen. Francis says employees losing their jobs will get a week's pay for every year of service and paid health care for one year.
The company will have fewer than 4,000 workers in northwestern Pennsylvania after the layoffs, which take effect in 60 days.
Information from: Erie Times-News,

ed note: GE Transportation announced a reduction of 20 jobs in the Emporium facility. 18 hourly workers, and two salaried workers, will be layed off. Some employees could take an early retirement option

Rendell Expected To Announce Budget At 8:00 PM

Legislative leaders, Rendell reach agreement on state budgetBy Brad BumstedSTATE CAPITOL REPORTERFriday, September 18, 2009Pittsburgh
HARRISBURG — Legislative leaders and Gov. Ed Rendell today reached agreement on a 2009-2010 budget that avoids a major state tax hike and may end the longest budget impasse in at least four decades.
Rendell is expected to announce the deal at an 8 p.m. news conference.
Under the deal, the planned phase-out of a business tax would be halted, table games at casinos would be legalized and taxes would be levied on small games of chance at firehouses and clubs. More...

Unstoppable Movie Experience Not So Good For Some Residents

EMPORIUM — What should have been the most exciting day of their lives turned out to be the most disappointing for a group of high school yearbook students from Cameron County High School on Friday.The students had been promised a behind-the-scenes look at the filming of the feature film “Unstoppable,” but the publicist never appeared and the students were left standing in a hot parking lot for hours. Even taking out a small cell phone camera brought down the wrath of security. The students were told to put it away immediately. More...

Friday, September 18, 2009

GE's Workers Await Fate

Source: Erie Times-News)By Jim Martin, Erie Times-News, Pa.
Sep. 17--GE Transportation announced plans Tuesday to eliminate 1,480 jobs, but the task of sorting out who stays and who doesn't is just beginning.
What is clear is that the 1,200 temporary lack-of-work layoffs the company announced in February will in no way serve as a blueprint for determining who receives a pink slip now.
Of the 50 salaried positions that will be cut, about half already have been identified and notified, said Shaun Francis, the company's general manager of human resources. The rest will be identified over the next two weeks, he said.
On the hourly side of the business, where 1,430 jobs will be eliminated, the company must first determine the number of cuts it wants to make from each job category.
From that number, the company will subtract any employees in that category who elect to retire.
Under a special early-retirement plan that's available to the company's union employees during a work-force reduction, workers who are between the ages of 55 and 60 and have 25 or more years service are eligible for early retirement. MORE

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Travel Alert from PennDOT
Unstoppable Movie Filming To Stop Traffic In Emporium
The Route 120/155 intersection in Emporium will be closed Friday, September 18 from 9am to 3pm, as filming takes place for the movie Unstoppable.Motorists should choose alternate routes around this closure. Drivers can follow PennDOT’s official detour that uses Routes 155, 120, 555 and 255 or they can choose alternate roads they prefer. Emergency response vehicles will be allowed to travel through the intersection closure. Drivers may also encounter intermittent traffic delays on Friday along Route 120 between East Allegheny Avenue and Britten Hill Road in Emporium. Closures and traffic delays will continue on area roads through October, as filming requires. PennDOT will issue travel advisories on those restrictions as necessary.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl G. Roe reminded those interested in watching the agency’s public drawings for the 2009 elk hunting licenses and the 2009-10 bobcat season permits to check-out the agency’s live webcast beginning at 10 a.m. on Sept. 11. To view the drawing, a “Watch Drawings Live” icon has been posted on the agency’s website ( for individuals to click on and watch the drawing.
In order to watch the live feed, you will need to have Flash Player installed on your computer. If you do not have Flash Player installed on your computer, please go to this link: Once Flash Player has been installed, you will be able to properly view the live feed of the drawing.
BOBCAT/ELK GUIDE PERMIT APPLICATION DEADLINE IS OCT. 16Anyone interested in applying to be a bobcat or elk guide for the upcoming seasons should submit a completed application to the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Bureau of Wildlife Protection by Friday, Oct. 16. Guide permits cost $25 for residents and $50 for nonresidents, per species. For those who wish to serve as guides for both bobcat and elk, permit fees are $50 for residents, $100 for nonresidents.
For more information, please visit the Pennsylvania Game Commission - State Wildlife Management Agency website:

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

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Friday, September 4, 2009

Electronic Items Found In Gibson Township

Electronic Items FoundEmporium State Police have announced that they recovered a quantity of electronic items on Thursday in Gibson Township.The found items are in custody of PSP. Anyone wishing to claim these items can contact Emporium PSP at 814-486-3321 with a proper description of the items.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

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Unstoppable Getting Ready To Start Production In Area

Films production will boost Cameron Co. businesses

Cameron County, with the state’s highest rate of unemployment, will get an economic shot in the arm from the production of the motion picture “Unstoppable” in coming weeks.“We are really starting to see things pick up,” said Tina Lorson, executive director of the Cameron County Chamber of Commerce. “Already, we are seeing a dramatic increase in traffic.” More...

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

New signage grant program announced for PA Wilds

A new grant program designed to improve signage and encourage use of the PA Wilds Design Guide will soon be available to communities and businesses in the PA Wilds region.
The grant program involves up to $1000 for business signs and up to $3000 for community signs. The business signs have a dollar-for-dollar cash match requirement (you put in $1000, they put in $1000). The community signs require only an in-kind contribution (that you install the sign and maintain it after it is installed).
Other requirements include demonstrating how your sign aligns with the spirit of the PA Wilds Design Guide, an award-winning planning document that promotes the use of materials and designs that fit in with the character of our region’s communities (for example, the use of wood, stone and other natural elements). Many communities are already using the Design Guide; its recommendations are all voluntary.
Guidelines and applications for the grant program will be posted on the PA Wilds Resource Center homepage ( under “Hot Topics” by Fri., Sept. 4. Deadline for applications is Nov. 2, 2009.

State mandates assailed

One member of a regional planning agency says alternatives to municipal sewage treatment plants should be looked at for rural areas.Bill Bogart, industrial representative for Cameron County on the North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission, said he is concerned about the state Department of Environmental Protection forcing small communities to put in expensive sewage systems they can't afford. The board has the opportunity to review projects in the region and submit any concerns it has. MORE