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| Monday, May 26, 2003

Two people were charged with drunken driving and ten people were charged with underage drinking during a roving sobriety checkpoint Friday, according to the Allegheny County North Hills DUI Task Force.

The roving checkpoints were on Route 910 in Indiana Township and on Saxonburg Boulevard in West Deer. They ran from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. Saturday.

In addition, police arrested one person on a Butler County bench warrant and another for providing false identification information.

Police also gave 31 warnings and nine citations for various motor vehicle code violations.

The task force, which includes officers from the West Deer and Indiana Township police departments, is in its eighth year.

To date, the task force has conducted 69 checkpoints, which have resulted in 207 drunken driving arrests.


New Kensington

The narrow road separations that make for a bumpy ride on Route 56 from the Lower Burrell line to Parnassus are scheduled to be repaired within the next couple of weeks.

Jim Keys, PennDOT's Westmoreland County maintenance manager, said he is going to come up with a game plan later this week for the joint separations, which are like grooves across the road where concrete has separated.

Repairs could include patching or milling out two-foot sections of road and paving over the sections, Keys said.


Across the Valley

People tired of trash and debris along rivers and tributaries can suggest cleanup sites for the state Department of Environmental Protection's 14th annual river sweep.

Last year, more than 1,100 volunteers collected junk along the Allegheny River and others in western Pennsylvania, covering more than 2,400 miles of shoreline.

This year, the river sweep will be from 8 a.m. to noon June 21. Volunteers receive trash bags for cleanup and a souvenir T-shirt for participating. Refreshments are provided.

Residents with suggestions for cleanup sites or who wish to volunteer to help can call the DEP's Betsy Mallison at 412-442-4182.


Across the Valley

Rural small businesses and farmers who make energy efficient improvements to their operations can apply for U.S. Department of Agriculture grants.

The deadline for the Energy Efficiency Improvements grants has been extended to June 27. Applicants must demonstrate financial need for the grants, which pay up to 25 percent of the cost of an energy efficiency project at the business. Projects include those that derive energy from wind, solar or geothermal sources, among others.

For more information, call the USDA Rural Development office in Greensburg at 724-853-5555.


Meetings

The following meetings have been changed to Tuesday because of the Memorial Day holiday:

  • Apollo-Ridge School Board, regular meeting, 7:30 p.m., board room of Apollo-Ridge High School, Route 56, Kiski Township

  • Freeport Council, committee meeting, 7 p.m., borough building, 414 Market Street

  • Harrison Township Commissioners, regular meeting, 7:30 p.m., municipal building, Park Avenue and Springhill Road

  • Lower Burrell Parks Commission, 7 p.m., city hall, 2800 Bethel Street

    - Compiled by Jonathan Szish

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