November 21, 2014 |
With pornographic e-mails circulating among prosecutors and judges, lawmakers accused of taking cash in a sting that wasn't even pursued by the state's top law enforcement officer, and featherweight ethics rules that are rarely enforced, Pennsylvania richly deserves its place, by one measure, among the nation's five most corrupt states. In that context, the gift ban Gov.-elect Tom Wolf has imposed on his transition team, which he promises to carry over into his administration, hits the right note.
October 16, 2014 |
For years, the residents of the tiny, unassuming borough of Newfield in southeast Gloucester County have wondered what would happen to the piles of radioactive waste sitting at a former metal manufacturing facility. Hopes of a cleanup plan being approved, let alone executed, dimmed as authority over the material remained in limbo. Twice, a federal agency's decision to cede its oversight of the waste to New Jersey was halted after complaints by the metals company. But on its third attempt, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's effort to shift its authority to the state Department of Environmental Protection withstood Shieldalloy Metallurgical Corp.'s challenge in court.
August 7, 2014 |
Gloucester County freeholders are scheduled to consider a resolution Wednesday opposing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's recently announced plan to address a contaminated site in Newfield. The proposed resolution calls the EPA's proposal "unacceptable," while asking the federal agency and state to do a full remediation. "There's no trust that anything good is going to come of this unless it's properly taken care of," Freeholder Deputy Director Giuseppe "Joe" Chila said Tuesday.
August 7, 2014 |
In the span of two weeks, Ryan Howard has gone from banished to the bench for a series worth of games to a near-permanent place in the middle of the struggling Phillies lineup. Entering play on Tuesday, the Phils had not scored a run since Friday. Manager Ryne Sandberg didn't do any tinkering, however, keeping Howard, mired in an 0-for-14 skid, and Chase Utley, in the midst of an 0-for-16 slump, in their usual spots in the lineup. It's at least somewhat surprising that Sandberg, who sat a slumping Howard on the last homestand, hasn't moved the first baseman out of the fourth spot in the order.
July 25, 2014 |
SEASIDE HEIGHTS, N.J. - A two-day drive from home, they came on buses from across the country. They watched as the cornfields of rural America morphed into the lush, deciduous trees separating major East Coast cities. A series of "Welcome to" signs slipped by until their buses came to the end of the line - the Atlantic Ocean, something that many of the volunteers with Lutheran Social Ministries last week had never seen before. They weren't in Nebraska anymore. It was the Jersey Shore.
July 13, 2014 |
Joe Ponessa, who spent 25 years as a housing, indoor environment and health specialist at Rutgers Cooperative Extension, responded to a recent column about mold testing. He said much of what he knows about mold remediation comes from associating with some of the top mold people in the country. Concerning testing, he said the sentiment is generally against it: "If you can see and/or smell mold, it's there. " Testing provides little practical information, although there are some occasions when it is justified: lawsuit evidence, doctor's request, validation of the effectiveness of a large, expensive cleanup, etc. The most meaningful testing, air sampling, is expensive.
May 31, 2014 |
A New Jersey Superior Court judge has ordered the multiple owners of a building that had housed a contaminated thermometer factory and then was converted into a day-care center known as Kiddie Kollege to pay a total of $6.13 million for the cleanup they failed to do and for punitive damages. More than 100 infants and children were exposed to mercury vapors in the day-care center for up to 18 months after it opened in Franklin Township, Gloucester County, in 2004. After the story grabbed national attention, changes were made in New Jersey and elsewhere and day-care facilities were subject to more thorough inspections.
May 29, 2014 |
The goats are not coming. That is, the 70 goats from Maryland that were supposed to arrive in Mount Holly this week to eat the ivy that is smothering trees and shrubs at a woodland park affectionately known as the Mount. Normally, the herd indiscriminately consumes leaves, twigs, and other things found in nature. But it won't make a dent in the thick carpet of ivy that has spread across the Mount, says Brian Knox, owner of Eco-Goats, which bills itself as an environmentally friendly vegetation control service.
May 10, 2014 |
A week after some of the worst flooding in the area in recent memory, the Schuylkill is ready to host the largest collegiate rowing competition in the country, the Dad Vail Regatta. Friday and Saturday's competition comes after crews spent nearly a week clearing tons of debris along the Kelly and Martin Luther King Jr. Drives and from the swollen river itself. "We've been working on the cleanup since the storm last week," Mark Focht, Philadelphia's first deputy commissioner for parks and recreation, said Thursday.
May 4, 2014 |
Ryan Houck was at work at Tri-Tech Automotive on Jefferson Avenue in Downingtown when he saw the water approaching from down the street Wednesday. Within minutes, the flood was at his feet. "I felt like I was on the Titanic," said Houck, 27. "The water started coming in the doors. " Houck and Tri-Tech owner Lee Captis spent Friday the way many residents did who live and work in flood-prone areas around the region: cleaning mud from the walls and floor. With the water receding and the sun shining - finally - officials and residents were left with assessing the damage from the record-setting rains that swamped the region this week.