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Alle-Kiski Tuesday takes

| Monday, June 30, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Tapping a lucrative resource: With 37 Marcellus shale gas wells on its Beaver Run Reservoir property and drilling royalties expected to provide 10 percent of its revenues by year's end, the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County has hired an auditing firm to oversee this income. Yes, care and safety in drilling must be of paramount importance. And there's good reason to believe that will be the case as the authority's future depends on protected water sources.

The Highmark-UPMC “deal”: That five-year “transition” agreement inked by Highmark and UPMC is all well and good, we suppose, but it fails to address the fundamental underlying problem created by the Insurance-Medicine Complex. We like to call it “turf cutting.” Far from “competition,” the goal is to stifle competition by creating artificial barriers to service. Simply put, anyone with any kind of health insurance should be allowed to access service at any doctor's office or medical facility. Anything less is patently unethical.

Be careful out there: The busiest boating time of the year arrives with the Independence Day weekend. And local, state and federal law agencies will be out in full force to crack down on drunken boating. The effort is dubbed Operation Dry Water. The good news is that alcohol-related boating fatalities were down 31 percent last year. The bad news is that too many boaters still imbibe behind the wheel. Don't drink and boat. Don't do it. Period.

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