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An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

A proposal to create an independent civilian police review board in Allegheny County has failed. County council rejected the measure in a 9-6 vote at its meeting Tuesday evening.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA


Four bronze panther monuments keep watch over the Panther Hollow Bridge in Oakland. Weathered over a century, the statutes appear to stalk passersby. 

Courtesy of Words Without Walls

Eric Boyd has been there: a writer behind bars. Starting in 2010, he says, he spent nine months in Allegheny County Jail. He’d taken a plea deal on charges of assault by negligence after failing to call an ambulance for a friend who’d overdosed.

Lucy Perkins / 90.5 WESA

Dozens of women attended a Women for Trump event in Allison Park Thursday evening, to show their support for the president, and one another, ahead of next year’s election.

Matt Rourke / AP

One state House lawmaker is trying to pitch a new solution to a very old Pennsylvania problem: the reliance on school property taxes.

Lebanon County Republican Representative Frank Ryan acknowledged Tuesday, his still-unintroduced property tax elimination plan would be a big, difficult pill for the commonwealth to swallow. That’s mainly because the plan contains nearly five-percent tax on all retirement income except Social Security.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh needs more housing, but housing that reflects what neighborhoods want and need. That was the driving sentiment behind a meeting in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty neighborhood Tuesday night, where attendees discussed ways to influence the development process.

Lucy Perkins / 90.5 WESA

U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb was challenged on the issue of impeachment and gun control at a town hall in Allison Park on Tuesday evening. 

ROSS MANTLE / BUZZFEED NEWS

The Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office reportedly pursues more insurance fraud cases than any other agency in the state. An investigation by BuzzFeed News found that the office gets evidence and money from insurance companies to handle claims filed by customers.

Keith Srakocic / AP

The Sports and Exhibition Authority announced Monday that it terminated controller Sharon Mink, after discovering that she allegedly made an unauthorized wire transfer of $21,350 in April 2018. 

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Central Lawrenceville buzzed with the sounds of chainsaws Monday, after strong winds and rain from a weekend downburst uprooted several trees in the Allegheny Cemetery. Crews spent Monday afternoon cutting off branches from a particularly large tree hovering over a grassy patch near the cemetery’s gates off Butler Street. 


Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

After nearly three years of work, Pittsburgh’s Department of Mobility and Infrastructure will present a draft of a new bike plan this fall. The work is part of a wider effort to rethink city streets.

Courtesy of the artist

When Contemporary Craft moved to the Strip District in 1986 the neighborhood wasn’t exactly a magnet for arts groups. True, Downtown was within walking distance, and the adjacent Penn Avenue corridor hosted retail produce stores and a few restaurants. But the historic Produce Terminal – at one end of which Contemporary Craft made its new home – marked a stretch of Smallman Street still dominated by wholesalers.

Lucy Perkins / 90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania has one of the largest veteran populations in the U.S., and for the past decade, a special court in Allegheny County has been providing them with an alternative route through the justice system.

Susan Walsh / AP

President Donald Trump made two widely reported appearances this week: One was a political rally, in Manchester, N.H. 

Growing up in Wexford, Sarah Valentine felt secure and loved by her family and friends. Still, there were moments: the basketball coach who assumed teen-aged Valentine was accompanied by the black woman she stood next to in line, rather than by her own father, who was white; the counselor who suggested Valentine look into scholarships for minorities.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Nearly 60 percent of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh librarians, library assistants, clerks and IT professionals who cast ballots Wednesday voted in favor of unionizing.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Across numerous departments and agencies, Pittsburgh officials have begun to rethink city streets: how they’re used, and who they’re for. 

Susan Walsh / AP

President Donald Trump’s visit to the Shell petrochemicals plant under construction in Beaver County was billed as an official White House event – not as a campaign rally.

Mark Lennihan / AP

In 2017, 5,614 people in Pennsylvania died from a drug overdose. County coroner and medical examiner reports show that fentanyl, a synethic opioid, was present in 64.8 percent of these fatalities. 

Many of these deaths were accidential as people often ingest or inject fentanyl without knowing it.

Jordan Strauss / Invision/AP

On today's program: Duquesne University is opening a new osteopathic medical school; questions remain about a lunchtime double stabbing downtown; Pittsburgher Ming-Na Wen is the latest Disney legend; and an artist-in-residence at PIT unveils work honoring what happens behind the scenes.  

Lucy Perkins / 90.5 WESA

Police have arrested and charged a man for fatally stabbing one woman and injuring another downtown Thursday morning.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA


Fundraising is essential to nonprofits, and many organizations don’t just accept cash donations anymore. Public radio listeners may recognize the messages that describe how to donate old cars, RVs and other vehicles.

FBI

It’s time for parents to have hard conversations with their kids about their internet behavior. That was the message from the Pittsburgh FBI Field Office Wednesday morning, when officials announced the results of a July initiative called Operation Independence Day. The nationwide operation netted 67 suspected child traffickers. 

Facebook

Police shot and killed a Penn Hills High School teacher who they say pointed a gun at them outside his home.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania lawmakers will meet soon to try to find alternatives to school property taxes. The task force is far from the first effort to replace the funding mechanism.

Courtesy of the Friends of Lisa Middleman

Lisa Middleman launched her independent campaign for Allegheny County District Attorney pledging to reform a justice system that incarcerates people of color at disproportionate rates.

Rachel Gobep / 90.5 WESA

A former Pittsburgh-area country club that closed six years ago is reverting back to nature, and a local nonprofit wants to protect the space for the community to enjoy. 

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Ieesha Rajab tries to stay positive. Her conversation is peppered with laughter; she doesn't want to bring everyone around her down, and reminds friends and family to remember the good things. She recalls many details about her son Ciquann Dudley, Jr., but one thing eludes her.

“The only thing I can’t get is his voice, I just miss it. That laugh, I can’t hear it in my memories. I can’t hear it," she said, her voice soft, almost a whisper.

“That little boy, he’s a force. And that voice of his. He talked all the time, telling jokes. And he laughed, it’s like a cackle.”

Photo by Bill O'Driscoll / 90.5 WESA News

There were a lot of things to like about working at Biddle’s Escape, said Raiona Gaydos.

Scott Detrow / StateImpact Pennsylvania

A new study finds that pregnant women living near hydraulic fracking activity in Pennsylvania are more likely to develop depression and anxiety.

“These are vulnerable women who are growing another human being inside of them," said Joan A. Casey, the study's lead author and an environmental health scientist at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.

Casey and her colleagues conducted the study with 7,715 research volunteers; all were expectant mothers within the Geisinger Health System, which serves much of central Pennsylvania.

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