Bellefonte

Shaun Dougherty, left, urged Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman to pass SB261, which would open a two-year retroactive civil lawsuit window.
Min Xian / WPSU

The state House passed a bill last week to help protect victims of child sex abuse, which victims and advocates are urging the state Senate to support.

Shaun Dougherty, a survivor of child sex abuse, said the current laws in Pennsylvania did not protect him after he was abused.

On Friday, Dougherty delivered a request to Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman at his office in Bellefonte, along with the Senator’s Democratic opponent in the midterm election, Ezra Nanes.

In July, Centre County District Attorney Bernie Cantorna hosted a town hall in Philipsburg addressing the prevention and treatment on opioid addiction.
Min Xian / WPSU

 

Drug-related overdose deaths continue to climb nationwide. Pennsylvania declared the opioid epidemic a state of emergency at the beginning of this year.

 

In Elk County, in March 2017, Kaitlyn Buerk, 24, bought five bags of drugs from her sister Allison Miller and her cousin Theresa Sample, who had just gone to Pittsburgh and bought 20 bags of what they thought was heroin.

 

Bellefonte Area High School history teacher Matthew Maris points to one of the Bellefonte Governor's papers now accessible online at powerlibrary.org.
Maddie Biertempfel / WPSU

One of Bellefonte’s claims to fame is that it’s the birthplace of seven governors–five who served Pennsylvania, one California, the other Kansas.

But until recently, their handwritten letters, inaugural addresses and speech transcripts, among other documents, have been sitting in a box.  

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro had asked that involuntary manslaughter charges be reinstated against fraternity members in the hazing death of Penn State student Tim Piazza.
Min Xian / WPSU

Both sides gave closing statements on Wednesday in the fourth preliminary hearing of the Penn State hazing case. All seven defendants face charges that had been dismissed by two districts judges earlier this year.

The charges were refiled by the attorney general’s office. Prosecutors allege these former fraternity brothers conspired and committed hazing, resulting in the death of pledge Tim Piazza.

In their closing arguments, defense attorneys said their clients had limited interaction with Piazza and had no knowledge of his injuries on bid acceptance night.

A construction vehicle moves earth for the construction of the new Rogers Stadium for Bellefonte Area High School.
Bellefonte Area School District

Bellefonte Area School District is searching for alternate venues for its football team to play as it becomes clearer their home field won't be available for most of this fall's football season. 

In a July 17 meeting broadcast on C-NET, the school board learned that an issue ordering the bleachers for the new stadium would hold up its completion from the previous target date in September to about October 12.

This will likely prevent the Bellefonte Red Raiders from playing any home football games until at least their October 26 matchup with Bald Eagle Area High School.

Rendering of new nursing home
Centre Care

A ground breaking for the new Centre Care nursing home is slated for this fall, with a goal of opening the $39 million facility in Benner Township in November 2020.

The new nursing home will be about 137,000 square feet.

“Our architect keeps telling us this is a large building. It takes up about 15 acres of the plot of land,” said Andrew Naugle, administrator of Centre Crest, the current home in Bellefonte.

The new Bellefonte Waterfront Development is located along Spring Creek between Lamb Street and High Street. It will include a six- or seven-story hotel, restaurants, stores and apartments.
Min Xian / WPSU

The Borough of Bellefonte has entered a sales agreement with developers on the waterfront project.

The new Bellefonte Waterfront Development is located along Spring Creek between Lamb Street and High Street. The lot has been vacant since the historic Bush House Hotel burned down in 2006.

Details of the sales agreement are still under negotiation, but the 4-acre project will include a six- or seven-story hotel, restaurants, stores and apartments. The hotel would be about 17,800 square feet, including about 80 guest rooms.

Pam and Toby Short with the letter they brought to State Sen. Jake Corman asking him to help pass redistricting reform.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Redistricting advocates in Centre County are making a last-ditch effort to change how Pennsylvania’s Congressional districts are drawn.

It’s a week past an unofficial deadline to keep redistricting reform on track for 2021. That’s when maps will be redrawn.

But a group from “Fair Districts PA—Centre County” went to Senator Jake Corman’s office in Bellefonte on Thursday to urge him to keep working. The state constitution says the bill must be passed and advertised in newspapers by August 6.

The Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania.
Min Xian / WPSU

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s office is appealing the dismissal of some charges in the case of the hazing death of Penn State student Timothy Piazza.

The attorney general’s office is fighting to reinstate charges against eight defendants, including involuntary manslaughter charges faced by five former fraternity members.

President of the now-banned Beta Theta Pi fraternity, Brendan Young, and pledge master, Daniel Casey, are among those who had involuntary manslaughter charges cleared, but they both will go to trial on charges of conspiracy to commit hazing.

crowded room
Anne Danahy / WPSU

Nestle is pulling out of the water bottling plant it was looking at building in Spring or Benner township.

A company spokeswoman said Monday that Nestle Waters looks at several factors in deciding where to put a plant. Those include the quality and taste of the water, the sustainability of the site and the logistics of getting the product to market.

The spokeswoman also said that Centre County “remains a leading candidate in our search for a third Pennsylvania bottling factory location, with an initial investment of $50 million.”

A house in the Holmes-Foster Historic District, which will be under the proposed HARB.
Sarah Paez / WPSU

  

A Historical and Architectural Review Board, or HARB, could be coming to State College soon.

At a series of HARB community workshops and public meetings hosted by the borough of State College, homeowners and residents voiced their opinions about having a board come to the borough.

The State College HARB would be an advisory board to protect the architectural heritage of the historic districts of College Heights, Holmes-Foster and Highlands. The HARB would recommend to the borough council whether to approve or deny property alterations.

Undeveloped land
Erin Cassidy Hendrick / WPSU

A key hearing took place in Bellefonte in the fight over a planned student housing complex named “The Cottages at State College.”

Jordan Yeager, the lawyer representing a group of Ferguson township residents who live near the proposed development, argued the plans for the complex encroach on an adjacent area zoned as agricultural. He said, “What they want to do is put the storm water management facilities that are a part of this massive development in a zoning district where that development isn’t allowed.”

The Bellefonte Borough Council held a special meeting yesterday to vote on the fate of the historic Garman Theatre. WPSU's Kate Lao Shaffner reports the council approved demolition of the Garman in a 5-4 vote.