Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

It’s been one year since Body Euphoria Inclusive Massage Therapy opened in upper Lawrenceville. The business is owned and operated by Eli Shumaker, a massage therapist who says he wanted to create a positive experience for his clients, especially those who identify as LGBT.

Uniontown's New Treasurer Says Racist Officials Won't Seat Her

Jan 8, 2020
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The newly elected treasurer of a small city in western Pennsylvania asserted in a lawsuit Wednesday that city officials plotted to block her from taking office because she is black.

Uniontown Treasurer-elect Antoinette Hodge alleged that a city councilman, Martin Gatti, took action to prevent her from being sworn in as scheduled this week and called her a “colored girl” in a discussion with officials at a bonding agency.

Maggie Young / WESA

Pittsburgh City Council unanimously voted to make District 2 Councilor Theresa Kail-Smith Council President on Monday. Kail-Smith said her choice to run for the seat was an 11th-hour decision.


People are increasingly turning to technology for ways to improve their lives, from saving money with budgeting apps or counting steps with fitness trackers. For people who need help dozing off, the mindfulness company Headspace offers so-called “sleepcasts,” which aim to help listeners wind down for bed with narrated tours of peaceful landscapes, including Pittsburgh.

5 Dead, Dozens Hospitalized In Pennsylvania Turnpike Crash

Jan 5, 2020
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Five people were killed and about 60 were injured on the Pennsylvania Turnpike early Sunday morning, when a loaded bus went out of control on a hill and rolled over, setting off a chain reaction that involved three tractor-trailers and a passenger car.

Courtesey of Bill Brittain

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: a member of the politically notable Costa family has drawn a progressive challenger in a Democratic primary. But state Sen. Jay Costa is hoping the family resemblance ends there.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald was sworn in to a new term shortly after noon Thursday, a formal event at Soldiers and Sailors Hall attended by some of the region’s leading elected officials. But by the end of a County Council meeting that evening, there were already signs that his third term will be different from the previous two.

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Construction of Pittsburgh’s proposed bus rapid transit or BRT system is expected to begin in 2021, a year later than initially planned.

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny County Council is often overlooked. After all, its main responsibilities typically consist of routine matters like approving budgets and political appointees named by the county executive. But that pattern could change after three new members are sworn in Thursday.


Real estate taxes are going up for residents of the Pittsburgh Public Schools district, but more must be done  to ensure the district's long-term fiscal health

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

McKeesport is one of the largest municipalities in Allegheny County after Pittsburgh, but has taken longer to bounce back from de-industrialization. 

Steven Senne / AP

The U.S. government declared this year that 20 counties in western Pennsylvania have effectively ended veteran homelessness.

Chris Squier / 90.5 WESA

All babies born at UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital in Oakland from now until the end of January will have five trees planted in their honor. The effort is through the nonprofit Plant Five for Life, which has a lofty long-term goal of planting trees for every baby born in Allegheny County.

Art by Jim Rugg / Courtesy of the artist

Jim Rugg is a comics artist with a penchant for drawing female protagonists.

Rugg, who's 42, traces the tendency to his high school days.

“In art class, I remember the teacher pointing out that I did not draw women well,” he said, laughing. “You hear that stuff as an artist, and that’s what you dedicate yourself to.”

Poorest PA Families Struggle Through Holidays As Cash Welfare Stuck At 1990s Levels

Dec 23, 2019
Matt Smith / Keystone Crossroads

Christmas is Carissa Coolbaugh’s favorite holiday.

Huntingdon Passes LGBTQ Anti-Discrimination Law, A First For Rural PA

Dec 23, 2019
Emma Lee / WHYY

It was a 2010 announcement about a Civil War cemetery that galvanized 58-year-old Anthony Bullett to act.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

The population of the City of Pittsburgh has stabilized, according to five-year estimates just out from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. However, the same data show a rapid loss of the city’s black residents.

RiverWise Brings Sustainability To Beaver County

Dec 19, 2019

Beaver County is going through some big changes. Shell is building a multibillion-dollar ethane cracker which will use ethane from the region’s natural gas to produce the building blocks of plastic. The plant will bring an anticipated 600 jobs to the region, but also air and water pollution.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

The Pittsburgh Public Schools board will have to meet later this month to determine how it will fund a budget it approved Wednesday night.

During a more than two-hour meeting, the board approved a $665.6 million budget, in a 5-4 vote. That budget included funding from a proposed 2.3 percent property tax increase. But in a separate vote, the property tax increase failed 4-4.

Delta Foundation via Facebook

The head of a local LGBT-rights advocacy group faces charges that include forgery and impersonating a public servant.

Ariel Worthy / 90.5 WESA

Nancy Black has a host of health problems, including arthritis, fibromyalgia and asthma, and she used to have to take opioids every 12 hours for her pain. However, in 2018 she decided to stop taking her medication, which included OxyContin, and to use medical marijuana instead. 

Matt Rourke / AP

All nine House Democrats from Pennsylvania now say they will support the two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump that were scheduled for a full House vote on Wednesday.

Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania's governor is announcing that the state will no longer charge homeless people a $20 fee in order to obtain their birth certificates.

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf announced the policy change on Monday during a news conference on efforts to help vulnerable people in the state.

Wolf says the fee can be a barrier to helping homeless people obtain jobs or qualify for government services.

A similar waiver for Pennsylvanians seeking help for substance use disorders has provided free birth certificates to 3,530 people since the start of 2018.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Democratic U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb, of Mt. Lebanon, said Thursday he will vote to impeach President Donald Trump. House Democrats announced Tuesday that they would bring two articles of impeachment against the president, charging him with abuse of power in the Ukraine affair and obstruction of Congress.

90.5 WESA

Darlene Harris isn’t going quietly: Less than a month before the Pittsburgh City Councilor is set to step down, she has filed a lawsuit against the city’s Ethics Hearing Board and Mayor Bill Peduto – the latest maneuver in her years-long defiance of the city’s campaign-finance rules.

Reid Frazier / The Allegheny Front

A new study by Carnegie Mellon University finds that in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia region, the economic boost from shale gas drilling has been less than the cost of premature deaths caused by pollution from the industry. 

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

A student attending Arsenal Middle School in Lawrenceville has been diagnosed with tuberculosis.

Ariel Worthy / 90.5 WESA

On the morning that Democrats presented articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence hailed Trump's record on military and veterans' issues — while promising the fight would continue. 

Joseph Darius Jaafari / PA Post

Ever since Cindy Keller’s son, Matthew, was locked up for a second time this past November in Lebanon County Correctional Facility, she worries about how much he eats.

Patrick Doyle / 90.5 WESA

A bill that would reform probation in Pennsylvania passed a House committee Monday – but only after it was scaled back so extensively that the American Civil Liberties Union dropped its support for the measure.