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Local News

Census delays district mapping

By Robert Swift Capitolwire HARRISBURG — Two legislative committees heard testimony Wednesday about how a six-month delay in receiving U.S. census data could pose logistical and legal headaches for Pennsylvania’s legislative redistricting process. The recent announcement by the U.S. ...

Gregory says courts, hospitals failed him

State Rep. Jim Gregory’s Hollidaysburg office was vandalized Jan. 22, and in the following weeks, Gregory said he believes the courts and health care sector failed to keep him and his staff safe. “As a result of not feeling safe, and in light of circumstances that were out of my control, ...

Wolf administration accused of writing biased questions

HARRISBURG — Gov. Tom Wolf has not hidden his disdain for a proposed constitutional amendment that would limit any Pennsylvania governor’s authority to extend disaster declarations, but legislative Republican leaders say Wolf’s opposition to the proposal has now crossed the ...

Police accuse man of having drugs

After recently arresting an Altoona man with a large amount of heroin, police spotted him engaging in suspicious behavior at a convenience store, leading to a second arrest, court documents stated. Michael P. Vaught, 39, was arraigned Friday by Magisterial District Judge Matthew Dunio on ...

Snyder seeks seat as Bellwood mayor

David Snyder Jr. has announced his candidacy for Bellwood mayor. Snyder will seek the Republican nomination in the May primary. Snyder has served eight years as a member of Bellwood Borough Council, and was appointed Bellwood mayor in January 2021 to fill the vacancy created by the ...

State tracking second vaccines

About 82% of the first doses of coronavirus vaccines delivered to providers in Pennsylvania have been administered already, but only 44% of second doses have been injected into patients’ arms, despite the Department of Health’s policy of ordering those second doses to be delivered just in ...

City man’s appeal rejected by court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court has rejected an appeal by an Altoona man who complained that his sentence for a violation of probation, added to a sentence imposed as the result of an aborted drug deal, resulted in an “excessive aggregate sentence.” A three-judge panel of the appeals ...

Bridge project to start March 1

A bridge replacement project in Bedford Township, Bedford County, will require a temporary detour of Country Ridge Road starting March 1. The bridge to be replaced carries Country Ridge Road traffic over the Pennsylvania Turnpike at milepost 144.85, according to the Pennsylvania Turnpike ...

PennDOT extends expiration dates

HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has announced that expiration dates for commercial driver licenses and commercial learner’s permits will be extended for state residents in response to statewide COVID-19 mitigation efforts. This will be the final extension for ...

City may take over McCrory’s building

The city is planning to take a former downtown anchor building and the lot next door by eminent domain, so it can convey the properties for redevelopment, after years of ownership has led only to deterioration, despite prodding by the Department of Codes and Inspections. The former ...

Nursing home admissions explained

In the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, the state Department of Health issued its controversial order that nursing homes accept people discharged from hospitals with COVID-19 in order to comply with guidance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Centers for Disease ...

Branch managers

Two squirrels claim their branches in a tree on the Penn State Altoona campus. Mirror photo by Patrick Waksmunski

Inmate loses bid to appeal kidnapping conviction

A Bedford County man, who is serving a sentence of 10 to 20 years for attempting to kidnap a 17-year-old Mennonite girl, has lost his bid to have his conviction overturned. The Pennsylvania Superior Court has rejected claims by Todd Richard Ferry, 62, formerly of New Enterprise, that state ...

Blair COVID-19 hospitalizations decreasing

HOLLIDAYSBURG — The amount of people hospitalized in Blair County with COVID-19 conditions continues to decrease, Public Safety Director Mark Taylor said Tuesday. A week ago, Taylor told commissioners that 28 people were hospitalized with COVID-19, the fewest cases in weeks, and a reason to ...

County to mark 175th anniversary

HOLLIDAYSBURG — Blair County will mark the 175th anniversary of its founding on Friday. “It was on Feb. 26, 1846, that an act of the state legislature created Blair County out of portions of Huntingdon and Bedford counties, making us the 59th out of the eventual 67 counties in ...

Tyrone secondary schools to return

One week after the district’s elementary school students returned to school in person on a full-time basis, Tyrone Area middle and high school students will return to a full-time, in-person learning model Monday. In a letter to families of middle and high school students, Superintendent ...

Senate panel OKs bill to aid farmers

HARRISBURG — The Senate Labor and Industry Committee approved a bill Tuesday that would set common sense safety standards for barns and other agricultural buildings that are repurposed for weddings and other social events. Senate Bill 191, sponsored by state Sen. Judy Ward, R-Blair, would ...

Better weather on the way

After weeks of substantial on-and-off snowfall, the forecast is calling for warmer temperatures and, at last, more sunshine. According to AccuWeather’s forecast for Altoona this week, Wednesday will bring springtime conditions, with a high of 50 degrees and partly cloudy skies. Though ...

City eyes ‘recovery house’ zoning

City Council on Monday gave permission for staff to investigate how best to amend the zoning ordinance to regulate drug and alcohol “recovery houses.” The discussion was in response to a recent inquiry from a party who hopes to buy a property in order to establish such a ...

Computer animation could be used in Payne murder trial

HOLLIDAYSBURG — The Blair County district attorney’s office is again considering use of a computer-generated animation during an upcoming murder trial. District Attorney Pete Weeks referenced the animation on Monday in court where Judge Timothy M. Sullivan indicated that pretrial motions ...