Bedford Gazette Weekend (Newspaper) - November 20, 2010, Bedford, Pennsylvania
Celebrating Hometown Life Inside: Christmas Ahoy!Sports:NBC falls to North Star Pg. 7
Quilt raffle, craft showGazette Weekend
Bedford, Pa. 75i
Published Continuously Since 1805. One of America's Oldest Newspapers. Vol. 206 No. 52 November 20 & 21, 2010
SATURDAY & SUNDAYSchool presses assessment lawsuit
A fire call to the Jean Bonnet Tavern Friday morning was a false alarm.
Owner Melissa Jacobs said apparently motorists saw puifs of smoke coming from the historic inn and called 911 at 11 a.m. She guessed that it was because the tavern was starting up two fireplaces at the same time. Jacobs said she tried to call Shawnee Valley Fire Company to let them know everything was OK but volunteers were already in the parking lot. Jacobs said the good thing about the false alarm was seeing the fast response from the Shawnee Valley volunteers, who checked the chimneys before leaving.
Today is the first day of black l^ar season in Pennsylvania.
The state Bureau of Forestry will operate a bear check station at the Sideling Hill Forest Headquarters, Fulton County, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Nov. 20; and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Nov. 22 and 23. In addition, all check stations will be open on Simday, Nov. 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The majority of the season's bears are ¡expected to be checked Saturday evening, according to Dave Scamardella, forester for the Buchanan Forest District. The station is located at 3017 Lincoln Highway, east of Breezewood. The phone nimiber is 814-735-4880.
Winterfest will be celeb-tated in Morrisons Cove this weekend.
The second annual event features the Winterfest parade today at 10:15 a.m. The parade forms behind the Martinsburg Elementary School and will end at Morrisons Cove Memorial Park. Santa will arrive during the parade, and children may get their pictures taken with a live reindeer in the dairy bam. Rotary exchange students will be taking part in the parade, collecting nonperish-able food items for the Martins-burg Food Pantry, new, unwrapped toys and warm, new hats, scarves, gloves and coats for the Martinsburg Police Department's Toys for Kids campaign. Today's events also include a soup, stew and chili cookoff in the banquet hall at the park. An arts and crafts fair will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will include a Christmas tree contest. Children can take part in the Make 'N Take workshop in the library from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tour books for the Twelve Days of Christmas will be available this weekend through Dec. 31. Winterfest activities wrap up with a community worship service and ceremonial lighting of the Christmas tree at 6 p.m. in the gazebo at the park. On Sunday, the park will offer its old-fashioned beef buffet from il a., to 1 p.m.
By Elizabeth Coyle Gazette Associate Editor
Bedford Area School District continued to press its lawsuit Friday against Bedford County's assessment system and asked the court to approve a preliminary injunction immediately and then throw out the reassessment as unconstitutional.
Lawyers for the school district and the
county commissioners were in court addressing the preliminary objections to the lawsuit that the district hopes will result in a nullification of the current property assessments following the coun-tywide revaluation adopted in 2009.
Attorneys for the district argued that, counter to what the commissioners' legal team maintains, it has standing to sue, has been adversely affected and
aggrieved by the assessment and is correct to pursue the matter with the Common Pleas Court
The commissioners, represented by Scott A. Dietterick and Edward Seeber of Hershey-based James, Smith, Dietterick and Connelly, argued that the district should have first tried the avenue that is open to it every year — the same appeal process that taxpayers may pursue.
Chalybeate ministry gets new start
By Elizabeth Coyle Gazette Associate Editor
A residential ministry that has helped men get back on the right track has reorganized its board as part of its new start.
Chalybeate Springs Ministries Inc. has provided shelter and Bible-based direction for parolees and other men struggling through adjustment back into society or with mental health and addiction problems for about eight years. But a new board of directors is hoping to give the project some new backing from the church commiuiity.
The late Daryl "Doc" Dawson started the aftercare ministry along with his wife, Sandy, in 2002. A little more than 100 men have gone through the program and its leaders are convinced it's helped bring a ne^ future to many of these residents.
"We've had some successes, we've had some nonsuc-cesses," said Sandy Dawson Bamhart.
Jamie Filkohazi said he learned to fend for himself starting at a young age. Again in the past year, life threw him another curve —Continued on Page 3
Gazette Photo/Elizabeth Coyle
Jeff Wracher, a resident at Chalybeate Springs Ministries' residence in Bedford, participates in a nightly Bible study along with Jamie Filkohazi, at left. The presence of God is a strength and the hope for the ministry's future, board members say.
"There are statutes and legal remedies to challenge individual assessments," Dietterick argued before Senior Judge Daniel Howsare. The district could appeal assessments during the annual appeals held each fall.
Attorney Robert Junker of the Ira Weiss law offices in Pittsburgh agreed the district does have that option and —Continued on Page 3
Gerholt murder trial continued to February
By the Gazette staff
The trial of accused murderer John Lewis Gerholt Sr. was continued until February, giving the defense team time to complete reports from expert witnesses.
Following a hearing Friday, Senior Judge Daniel Howsare granted defense attorney Thomas Dickey a continuance and gave him until Dec. 17 to submit the reports.
Howsare set Feb. 16 as the date that prospective jurors would be called in to fill out questionnaires with jury selection to follow on Feb. 23.
From there, Howsare said there would be a day's break before trial is under way.
The case has been continued several times but Dickey made no apologies, considering that Gerholt may face the death penalty if the jury convicts him of first degree murder. Even without a death sentence, he could serve life in prison.
The delays have been necessary. Dickey said. "I'm feeling better and better. These (continuances) have helped us."
—Continued on Page 3Thousands in Pa. could lose jobless benefits
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Tens of thousands of Pennsylva-nians will lose their weekly unemployment benefits if Congress does not extend the federally funded portion that ends Dec. 1, the state Department of Labor and Industry said.
The department estimated
this week that 83,000 people will lose an average weekly benefit of about $310 in December if the federal portion expires. If nothing is done, approximately 166,000 additional people would lose their benefits in the January-through-March period, the agency said.
For now, the unemployed are eligible to receive up to 99 weeks of benefits that are capped at $564 a week. After Nov. 30, most people will exhaust their benefits more quickly and new applicants will only be able to receive 26 weeks of state benefits. At the end of
September, 58,000 had exhausted their benefits as the economic recovery remained slow.
Historically, the federal government offers extended benefits xmtil the economy is in better shape, said Mark Price, a labor economist for the union-
affiliated Keystone Research Center in Harrisburg.
For instance, he said, unemployment had subsided to 7.2 percent after the 1980s recession when the federal government allowed extended benefits to expire.
—Continued onPage 5
V (Obituary on Page 16.) ' DELLING, Robert F, 70, of Martinsburg.
Astronauts open up world to Earth l ings
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Earthlings are seeing their planet in a whole new light, thanks to NASA and its astronauts aboard the Internet-wired space station.
They're beaming down dazzling images and guess-this-mystery-location photos via Twitter and have even launched a game. Landlubbers the world over are eating it up. From schoolchildren to grown-up business entrepreneurs and artists, the public is captivated and can't seem to get enough.
It's clear from the photos why orbiting astronauts rate Earth-gazing as their favorite pastime.
"The Earth never disappoints," the commander of the International Space Station, Douglas Wheelock, said in a broadcast interview Thursday.
Known to his nearly 68,000 Twitter followers as Astro—Wheels, Wheelock has been posting impressive photos of the Earth and some of his thoughts ever since he moved into the space station in June, five months after it got Internet access.
"It's been a real thrill to be able to do that," said Wheelock. —Continued on Page 16
This image provided by NASA and posted to Twitpic by astronaut Douglas Wheelock on Nov. 7 shows a night view over the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea as seen from the International Space Station.
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Mostly sunny. Highs in the lower 50s. West winds 10 to 15 ^ mph. Tonight: "Partly cloudy. Lows in the lower 30s. Northwest winds 5 to 10 mph, becoming northeast.The Forecast
TOMORROW — Partly sunny in the morning, then becoming mostly cloudy. Highs in the upper 40s. Southeast winds 5 to 10 mph. Sunday night:' Mostly cloudy. Lows in the upper 30s.
THE OUTLOOK — Monday: Partly sunny Highs in the upper 50s. Monday night: Mostly cloudy. A chance of showers after midnight. Lows in the mid 40s. Chance of rain 40 percent. IHiesday: Rain likely. Highs in the upper 50s. Chance of rain 70 peiwnt. Tuesday night: Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of rain. Lows in the lower 40s.