Today's News - Friday, December 6, 2013

Johnstown Police have issued another arrest warrant for 29-year-old Dayon Richardson. Richardson is on the Megan’s Law list as a sexually violent predator. He was scheduled to go to trial Thursday for failing to register his address with police, but did not show up. Police also filed new charges against Richardson for the same thing. If you know where he is, call police at 1-800-281-16-80.

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Cambria County continues to struggle financially – commissioners say the county is $13 million in debt. Yesterday, officials voted to take out a 5 million dollar loan to help pay down some bills. The loan will be paid back over eight years. County Controller Ed Cernic Jr. is not happy, saying that action will only create more long-term debt for taxpayers. The 2014 budget proposal is expected to be introduced at the commissioners' next meeting on December 19th.

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“The Altoona Mirror” reports that St. Francis University student Aftyne Green of Altoona was arrested yesterday on sexual assault charges. The 21-year-old is charged with assaulting another student in his dorm room last month. Green claims there was no sexual contact and they had just been drinking beer together. He is free on bail with a preliminary hearing set for Wednesday.

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Governor Tom Corbett will reveal his proposal today that will look to use billions of dollars in federal Medicaid expansion dollars to provide health insurance to half a million un-insured Pennsylvanians. Corbett’s measure is expected to allow people to buy private market insurance and charge premiums to those with higher incomes. The plan, which would require federal approval, is also expected to impose job-search related requirements on those who work less than 20 hours per week. If approved, Pennsylvania would be the first state to require a job search for Medicaid coverage.

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The State Health Department is teaming up with public and private partners to offer free flu immunizations next week during National Influenza Vaccination Week. Flu season typically runs from October through May and often peaks between January and March. To find a local flu clinic, call 877-PA-HEALTH.

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State Police are asking Pennsylvanians to join an effort to remember fallen officers. Residents are being asked to display a blue light in their windows during the holiday season. Police say the blue color is symbolic of peace.

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95-year-old anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela died Thursday.  Words of praise are pouring in from around the world.  In Washington, President Obama called Mandela one of the most influential and courageous people to ever walk the earth.  Former President Jimmy Carter says that "human rights activists around the world have lost a great leader." South Africa has launched plans for elaborate memorial services for the former president.  The more-than-weeklong state memorial is expected to be unaparalleled in South Africa's history. 

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The public is invited to sign a book of condolence honoring the memory of Nelson Mandela at the South African Embassy in Washington, DC.  After hearing about the death of the former South African President, many came out to visit the statue of Mandela, which was unveiled outside of the embassy less than three months ago.

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House Republicans are coming under criticism from President Obama.  The President says they should be embarrassed by their inability to produce legislation.  In an exclusive interview with MSNBC's Chris Matthews, Obama criticized the GOP for resisting to work with him on a number of issues.

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A state of emergency is posted for Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma due to a severe winter storm.  People from Texas to New York are feeling the mighty chill of a storm which has forced businesses and schools to close.  Power lines are being left caked in ice and roads have become treacherous. 

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American forces in and around Yemen are on heightened alert after deadly strikes against that country's defense ministry.  The coordinated attack killed 52 people and wounded 167.  The two-stage strike started with a car bombing, followed by a fierce gun battle on Thursday. 

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Citigroup and Wells Fargo are the targets of a newly-filed lawsuit out of California.  The city of Los Angeles is seeking damages for a loss in tax revenue due to discriminatory mortgage lending to the city's minority communities.  

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The Detroit Underwear Bomber wants his four life sentences tossed out.  The website MLive.com reports Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is appealing the penalties.  His lawyer argued at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit that Abdulmutallab's post-arrest confession wasn't admissible. 

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Measles cases are on the rise in the U.S. and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says nearly all the cases involve people who weren't vaccinated against the disease.  The CDC says the 175 cases this year are about three times the usual number.

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The hunter who allegedly ignited this summer's huge Rim Fire in California is reportedly going to face criminal charges.  According to a "San Francisco Chronicle" report, the district attorney of Tuolumne County says there are indications from federal prosecutors that they will pursue a case against the unidentified suspect.  Investigators say the blaze was ignited when the hunter started an illegal campfire in the Stanislaus National Forest on August 17th.

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The Twitterverse is sounding off on "The Sound of Music Live."  The TV adaptation of the iconic 1959 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical starring Carrie Underwood and "True Blood's" Stephen Moyer aired live on NBC Thursday night.  It quickly became a trending topic on Twitter, but the reviews were decidedly mixed. 

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 Two men in California could be facing charges of felony grand theft and tampering after they allegedly stole parts of the car "Fast & Furious" star Paul Walker died in this past weekend.  CNN cites police as saying the suspects took the wrecked Porsche's T-top roof panel late Saturday night while the truck the car was being transported on was stopped at a traffic light. 

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Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn says she's ready to hit the slopes today in Lake Louise, Canada.  It will be her first World Cup start since injuring a knee last February.  Vonn's comeback was interrupted when she crashed while training in Colorado last month. 

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A luxury website is offering shoppers what they're calling the world's most expensive Christmas wreath this holiday season.  The decoration is adorned with 32 diamonds and 16 rubies and costs more than $4.6 million.  It was created by a Finnish floral designer and also features some of the world's most exclusive flowers and leaves.

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Money is the number one cause of fights between couples, according to a new poll conducted by non-profit American Consumer Credit Counseling.  The online survey found that 67 percent of respondents admit to arguing with their significant other over matters of finances -- more than any other issue.  Making decisions about how to spend money was overwhelmingly the trigger for most arguments.  Nine percent said in-laws were their biggest cause of stress, and only five percent cited fidelity.  And it looks like money becomes more and more of a hot-button issue as a relationship grows.  Seventy-nine percent of those in relationships between ten to 20 years old said they argued over money, compared to 54 percent of those in relationships of less than five years.

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Just two years after Cambria County’s Stoneycreek River won Pennsylvania River of the Year, the Kiski-Conemaugh River is one of five waterways in the state in the running for the 2014 title. The rivers flow from Johnstown to Freeport in Armstrong County. The state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources says the top vote-getter in the contest will receive a $10 thousand leadership grant that river supporters could use to schedule a year’s worth of events celebrating the waterway. Online voting closes December 27th. You can vote at PARiveroftheYear.org .

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