The South at a glance

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Waterline replacement to start soon

Pennsylvania American Water said it will soon start a $3.6 million project to replace more than 4 1/2 miles of aging water main in the Mon Valley and parts of Washington County.

The projects will replace water mains that date to the early 1900s.

Over the next several months, the company plans work in these communities:

• Canonsburg: Moore Avenue

• Chartiers: Ivy Court and Lawn Street

• Elizabeth Township: Fallen Timber and Buena Vista roads

• McDonald: Third Street

• Peters: East Edgewood Drive

• Washington: Cherry, North Franklin, Cleveland and Oak avenues and Taft Street.

During construction, customers might experience temporary service interruptions, discolored water and/or lower-than-normal water pressure.



Failure to shovel snow causing problems

Shoveling snow is not a favorite task for many people, and it has become particularly problematic for residents of Greenbriar Drive who are responsible for clearing a private common alley themselves.

If residents do not clear their portion of the alley, some people cannot access their driveways and garages after snowfalls.

"This is the first time I've felt it necessary to come to you for help," Debbie Taylor, a 23-year resident of Greenbriar Drive, told commissioners on Feb. 12. "Unless the ordinances [on snow clearing] are enforced, I can't safely get to my driveway."

Although Mrs. Taylor said she shovels her section of the alley, she is dependent on others doing their fair share of shoveling - or she is stuck.

She expressed appreciation to Bob Fischer, Scott's code enforcement officer, for sending violation notices to more than 30 residents within the past month and added that some of the worst offenders appear to be renters.

"It's a frustrating issue," said David Jason, commissioner for Ward 6, where Greenbriar Drive is located.

He said he and fellow Commissioner Tom Castello will hold a meeting March 11 at nearby SS. Simon & Jude Church in the hopes of resolving the issue.

One option, he said, would be to form a homeowners' association that would handle such matters for the whole plan.

Mr. Fischer said residents were cited with violating the International Property Maintenance Code, which Scott has adopted and which states that all sidewalks, walkways, stairs, driveways, roadways, parking spaces and similar areas shall be free from hazards.

The township's ordinance 614 requires that property owners must clear snow and ice from an area within 24 hours after it occurs.

Scott can impose a fine ranging from $100 to $1,000 for violations. It also can plow the area and then bill for the service.

Police Chief James Secreet added that people who have parking passes also must clear their portions of driveways, roads and sidewalks within 24 hours of a snowfall.


Preliminary budget approved

The South Fayette school board Tuesday approved a $43.37 million preliminary budget for the 2013-14 school year with a property tax rate of 24.6361 mills.

The rate includes a proposed increase of 0.8050 mills, expected to generate about $913,000 for general and retirement expenses.

A final budget will be approved in June.

• South Fayette Middle School is presenting "Seussical Jr." at 7 p.m. tonight and Friday and at 2 p.m. Saturday in the middle school auditorium.

Tickets: $7; $3 for students and senior citizens; free for age 5 and younger and for South Fayette Senior Citizen Gold Card members.

To order tickets: Janie Welsh, 412-477-5568.

• The nonprofit South Fayette Foundation for Excellence will hold its third fundraising concert with The Mansfield Five and The Four Townsmen at 7 p.m. Saturday at the SNPJ Lodge 6, 540 Third Ave., Bridgeville.

Food, snacks and beverages will be available for purchase, and auctions and raffles will be held. Doors open at 6 p.m.

Tickets: $20. To order tickets: 724-693-9441.

Proceeds benefit teacher grants, student scholarships and instructional supplies, technology and equipment for the district.


Board places limit on potential tax increase

If the Steel Valley school board decides to raise the property tax rate for 2013-14, it will limit any increase to the district's Act 1 index rate or less.

Under the state's Act 1, school districts cannot raise the property tax rate beyond an inflation-based index unless they seek special exceptions from the state or have residents vote on the proposed increase.

The school board on Tuesday voted to keep any increase within 2.4 percent, the district's Act 1 index rate.

Acting district business manager Jim Marnell said the district's preliminary budget probably will not be adopted until May. The final budget will be adopted before the end of June.

• Also on Tuesday, the board hired six day-to-day substitutes for the rest of the school year and voted to give administrators power to hire up to six additional substitute teachers per week for the remainder of the school year.

In January, superintendent Ed Wehrer said the district had been having trouble finding enough substitute teachers, and the board increased substitutes' pay from $75 per day to $90 per day for the first 30 days and from $100 per day to $120 per day for each day afterward.

Mr. Wehrer said furloughed Steel Valley teachers will be called first to substitute and then substitutes will be called from the district's approved substitute list.

• By April 1, teachers and administrators in the district will have new email addresses.

The district's former Internet service provider charged about $100 per month for email service, but the new service through Google is free, said Ed Colebank, director of academics, information and technology.

He said the new system is in place and the process of switching educators to their new email addresses is beginning.

• The school board was entertained at its meeting Tuesday night by members of the Barrett Elementary School Dance Team.

The students danced and sang in a Black History Month retrospective on the former television show "Soul Train."

Fifth-grader Rionte Carter portrayed the late Don Cornelius, host of the show. Songs performed included "Car Wash," "Respect," "Greatest Love of All" and "On Broadway."

Students from each grade level also spoke about historic achievements of African-Americans.


W&J to play Steelers basketball team

A team of Washington & Jefferson College faculty and students will play the Pittsburgh Steelers Footballers basketball team in a charity basketball game at 8 p.m. Wednesday at W&J's Henry Memorial Center.

Proceeds benefit the Tim McNerney Scholarship, Washington County Special Olympics and NFL Play 60.

Participating Steelers will sign autographs at halftime.

Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets: $7 in advance; $10 at the door.

To order tickets: 724-229-5120 or


High school musicals begin

The Post-Gazette has an online listing of 2013 high school musicals and award shows:

If the list is missing upcoming performances, please send an email to and the production will be added online.

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