Allegheny County Council

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Girls sports teams took the spotlight at a recent meeting of Allegheny County Council.

Council members approved certificates of achievement honoring athletes and their coaches from Shaler Area, Seton-La Salle, Mt. Lebanon and North Catholic high schools.

Shaler Area girls won the WPIAL Quad-A championship as they compiled a 20-3 record. Council President Jim Burn, D-Millvale, told the young women they clearly understood the concept and importance of working as a team.

Seton-La Salle Coach Dennis Squeglia talked about how student athletes learn important lessons outside the classroom. His team had a 27-3 record and won its WPIAL AA championship game by the biggest margin in the history of the competition.

Councilman Vince Gastgeb, R-Bethel Park, said Mt. Lebanon girls are as reliable in winning championships as are the swallows that return each year to Capistrano, Calif. The team won its third consecutive PIAA Quad-A championship.

North Catholic High School girls won the WPIAL Single-A crown this year.

• Council declared April "Autism Awareness Month" and honored the county's Office of Behavioral Health for its programs to aid people with the condition. Councilwoman Jan Rea, R-McCandless, noted that one in 150 children has some form of the disorder, which manifests itself in communications and relationship problems. Deputy Director Patricia Valentine said improved diagnosis and treatment were critical.

• April also was Fair Housing Month in the county. This year marks the 43rd anniversary of the passage of the federal Fair Housing Act, which prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental or financing of housing.

Ken Gormley, dean of the law school at Duquesne University, accepted a proclamation marking the 100th anniversary of the institution.

• Historian, teacher and performer Nelson Harrison told council members that preserving the building that housed the long-closed Crawford Grill in the Hill District was a critical element in marking the region's jazz history. Council proclaimed April as Jazz Appreciation Month.

• Council marked personal milestones for several individuals. Blawnox Police Chief George P. Bucha was honored for his 50 years of service. ... Common Pleas Judge Jeffrey A. Manning received the Judge Robert E. Dauer Award for Judicial Leadership and Excellence ... Lawyer Michael F. Feeney received the Judge James R. McGregor Award. Both honors were given at the Amen Corner's 51st judicial reception. ... Vanessa Kessel of Montour High School earned a Girl Scout Gold Award. ... Marvin Hamlisch was honored for his service as the Pittsburgh Pops principal conductor.

Len Barcousky: or 412-263-1159.


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