Larkin Page-Jacobs / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh Restaurants Approach Reopening With Caution

With Allegheny County entering the green phase of reopening from the coronavirus pandemic Friday, bars and restaurants will be free to serve dine-in guests for the first time since March. But not all establishments will reopen right away, and for those that do, the rules will be much different.

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Live Blog: Coronavirus In Pittsburgh

The latest: No significant increase in coronavirus infection in Allegheny County. Black-led social justice groups ask for pause on protests for health and safety. Zoo to reopen Friday.

Politics & Government

Mel Evans / AP

The votes are in – most of them, anyway – and in Allegheny County, there were at least two big groups of winners on Election Day: female candidates, and the elections workers themselves.

Ariel Worthy / 90.5 WESA

Following a rash of social media videos and media stories examining how and why Pittsburgh police broke up a protest in East Liberty on Monday, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto has said he's requesting investigations by the Citizen Police Review Board and the Office of Municipal Investigations.  

Ariel Worthy / 90.5 WESA

Amid conflicting accounts over what led Pittsburgh police to break up a protest in East Liberty Monday, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto vowed to review transcripts of police communications “line by line” to determine what actually happened. But the mayor said at a news conference late Monday night that he would not make the transcripts public, a move that has prompted criticism from some transparency advocates.

Science, Health & Tech

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

The coronavirus has infected another 511 people to surpass 73,000 total cases in Pennsylvania, and another 75 people have died from it, the state Health Department said Tuesday.

An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

Many college students don’t know when they’ll return to campus due to COVID-19, but when they do, they will need a place to live. Some might feel pressure to commit to housing despite the uncertainty, and Pittsburgh lawyer Marcy Smorey is using artificial intelligence to help students be smart about signing apartment leases.

Identity & Justice

Kiley Koscinski / 90.5 WESA

Scores of people surrounded East Liberty Presbyterian Church on Wednesday for an afternoon vigil, marking the fifth straight day of local demonstrations in response to the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis Police custody last week.

Marc Levy / AP

Philadelphia will be under curfew again for a fifth straight night Wednesday, as Gov. Tom Wolf marched in Harrisburg with demonstrators protesting police violence against black people and racial injustice following the killing of George Floyd.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

 

On today's program: A recap of the results from Pennsylvania’s delayed primary election; courts in Allegheny County reopen with new restrictions; and police look for more information about the homicide of Tionna Lashay Highsmith, who died this year after being wounded 15 years ago.

Education

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Elementary and secondary schools in the yellow and green phases of the state’s reopening plan could resume in-person instruction as early as July 1. Higher education institutions may be able to do so on June 5, the Pennsylvania Department of Education announced Wednesday.

Kathleen Davis / 90.5 WESA

While children aren’t required by the state to wear masks in child care facilities, staff are.

Ed Mahon / PA Post

Gov. Tom Wolf is confident that Pennsylvania students will return to their schools this fall.

Good Question!

Teenie Harris / Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh: Heinz Family Fund

Pittsburgh's First Black Councilman Paved The Way For Diversity In City Hall

The year 1954 was a significant one in Pittsburgh: Jonas Salk administered the first polio vaccine to students in Lawrenceville, Roberto Clemente was drafted by the Pirates and Hill District resident Paul Jones became the first black man to sit on Pittsburgh City Council.

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Development & Transportation

Matt Slocum / AP

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission voted Tuesday to lay off 500 fare collectors and other toll workers and make the entire interstate network a cashless system.

Ryan Loew / 90.5 WESA

The Port Authority of Allegheny County on Friday confirmed that it will receive nearly $100 million in federal funding for its Bus Rapid Transit project.

Arts, Sports, & Culture

Autumn House Press

In 1991, the brutal civil war in Liberia caused poet Patricia Jabbeh Wesley and her family to emigrate to the United States. The war splits her story nearly in two: To escape her home country, Jabbeh Wesley has said, she literally had to walk over dead bodies.

Gene Puskar / AP

For 60 years, the Three Rivers Arts Festival has been held largely outdoors. Recent festivals have drawn some 500,000 visitors to Point State Park over 10 days, making it Pittsburgh's biggest public arts event.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

On today's program: A local author revisits the motivations behind one of history's most influential political wives; some big businesses in Pittsburgh could face grim prospects; and a new private grant program offers small businesses an alternative to federal loans. 

Environment & Energy

EPA's New Rule Limits States' Ability To Regulate Pipelines Under The Clean Water Act

Jun 2, 2020
Kimberly Paynter / WHYY

A new EPA rule reverses 50 years of practice under the Clean Water Act by diminishing a state’s ability to reject large energy infrastructure projects like interstate pipelines.

DEP Stood To Gain New Staffers, But Now Faces Flat Funding To Start Next Fiscal Year

May 28, 2020
Susan Phillips / StateImpact Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection was hoping to welcome 25 new staff members in the next fiscal year. 

Economy & Business

Larkin Page-Jacobs / 90.5 WESA

With Allegheny County entering the green phase of reopening from the coronavirus pandemic Friday, bars and restaurants will be free to serve dine-in guests for the first time since March. But not all establishments will reopen right away, and for those that do, the rules will be much different.

Local Headlines

People Are Blowing Up, Or Just Taking, ATMs In Philly

1 minute ago
Matt Rourke / AP

Explosions have hit 50 cash machines in and near Philadelphia since the weekend, and one man has died, in a coordinated effort to steal them or take the money inside, authorities said Wednesday.

A 25-year-old who's accused of selling homemade dynamite on the streets with instructions on how to use it on ATMs has been arrested, though authorities aren't yet sure whether the man is connected to the coordinated effort, the state attorney general said.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

News on the coronavirus pandemic, including the responses of local governments, health departments, hospital systems, schools and other institutions. For information from the previous week, click here

Editor's note: This post will be frequently updated with the latest news.

 

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

5:51 p.m. - No significant increase in coronavirus infection in Allegheny County

Food & Drink

Elena Shahen / Bloomfield Saturday Market

Farmers markets are beginning to return to the Pittsburgh region and like most entities, COVID-19 has changed the way they operate. Some markets have pushed back opening dates to make time to figure out what needs to change in order to maintain social distancing and keep vendors safe. 

National & International

Trevon Ellis spent years building up his north Minneapolis barbershop, the Fade Factory, luring customers with smart haircuts, snacks and friendly conversation.

It took just one terrible night to destroy it all.

"Inside is totally burned down," Ellis says. "Everything was burned to a crisp."

The recent wave of protests against police brutality has left a trail of chaos and destruction in many city neighborhoods, with countless businesses looted and damaged.

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