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Judge: Man competent for trial in killings of 3 at meeting

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 12:26 PM

STROUDSBURG, Pa. (AP) — A judge has ruled a Pennsylvania man competent to stand trial in the shooting deaths of three people during a municipal meeting.

Judge Joseph Cronin denied a defense request that he find 60-year-old Rockne Newell unfit for trial in Monroe County and send him to a mental health facility for treatment.

Defense attorneys say Newell has a long history of mental illness and refuses to discuss what happened at the August 2013 supervisors' meeting in the Pocono Mountains community of Ross Township.

Churches, synagogues, mosques bear tough New England winter

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 12:11 PM

BOSTON (AP) — Religious leaders in snowbound New England are beginning to ask themselves how their houses of worship will make ends meet after all these acts of God.

Churches, synagogues and mosques report attendance is down at services, as many storms have hit around weekends. That means donations are drying up as costs for snow removal, heating and maintenance are soaring.

Man pleads guilty in case of 9-month-old ingesting heroin

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 12:02 PM

WYCKOFF, N.J. (AP) — A northern New Jersey man has pleaded guilty to child endangerment after his pregnant girlfriend's 9-month-old accidentally ingested heroin last year.

The Record (http://bit.ly/1JWedrc) reports that 26-year-old Mark Tomat, of Mahwah, told a judge that he and his girlfriend had heroin at her Wyckoff home in February 2014. Shortly after he left the home, he learned that her son had ingested the drug.

Youth hockey players escape injury in rink roof collapse

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 11:59 AM

CANTON, Mass. (AP) — A youth hockey team escaped without injury when part of a snow-weighted roof collapsed at a Massachusetts skating rink.

Police in Canton say everyone is safe and accounted for after Saturday morning's collapse.

Police say the rear portion of the roof at the Metropolis Skating Rink began to fail as a Norwood youth team was inside but they were able to get out along with parents and rink workers.

Oregon considers bill banning most vaccine exemptions

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 11:52 AM

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Parents who want to maintain the right to refuse vaccinations for their children are mounting a strong fight against an Oregon bill that takes aim at the state's highest-in-the-nation rate of non-medical vaccine exemptions.

The measure would eliminate personal, religious and philosophical exemptions to vaccine requirements. If the bill becomes law, Oregon would follow West Virginia and Mississippi in passing such legislation.

Finding Ohio State band director replacement taking time

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 11:24 AM

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Hiring a replacement for fired Ohio State University marching band director Jonathan Waters is taking longer than the school originally anticipated.

A university spokesman acknowledges that, as of the end of February, the university has overshot the four to six months that it projected would be needed.

Spokesman Chris Davey said Friday that more than 25 people have applied for the job and several others have been recommended. He says the search committee remains actively engaged in filling the position.

Retired Goodyear blimp gondola joins Cleveland exhibit

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 11:11 AM

CLEVELAND (AP) — The gondola of the decommissioned Spirit of Goodyear blimp has landed at its new home in a Cleveland historical society exhibit.

The 3,400-pound gondola was built in 1982 and was also used on two earlier blimps, the America and Stars & Stripes. After the Spirit of Goodyear was retired a year ago, Akron-based Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. donated the gondola to the Western Reserve Historical Society's Crawford Auto Aviation Collection.

NYC ID program starts off with a bang

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 11:00 AM

NEW YORK (AP) — The long lines to sign up for New York City's popular municipal ID cards may be gone but the wait for an appointment remains lengthy for city residents who want to enroll.

New York City officials figured it would be a good first year if 250,000 to 300,000 people signed up. But city residents have made more than 240,000 appointments in just the first month.

More than 30,000 people have already been enrolled, and have either received their cards or are waiting for them to come in the mail.

National monument supporters in California get antsy

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 10:44 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — California lawmakers and interest groups are ramping up efforts to win national-monument designation for four scenic vistas in the state, from vast stretches of the Mojave Desert to redwood stands along the Pacific Coast Highway to canyons and mountains near wine country.

The national monuments designation typically takes lands already owned by the government and walls them off from new mining and roads. Recreational activities such as hiking and horseback riding are commonly allowed, though each national monument has its own dos and don'ts.

Hyundai recalls 263,000 cars due to power-steering problem

POSTED BY: Associated Press
Saturday, February 28, 2015 - 10:38 AM

NEW YORK (AP) — Hyundai is recalling about 263,000 cars in the U.S. and Canada because a sensor problem could cause drivers to lose power-assisted steering.

The company has not reported any injuries or accidents. A representative for Hyundai Motor America wasn't immediately available for comment.

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