9 Lancaster County school districts have armed personnel on campus; Octorara will be the 10th

b-501When the Octorara school board approved a contract last week for an armed security officer from a private company, it was the first district in Lancaster County to do so.

But not the first to have armed personnel on campus.

Nine of the county’s 17 public school districts have armed school resource officers, who are active police officers. SROs are employed by local police departments.

Warwick is the only local district other than Octorara that uses a security officer. He’s employed by the district and doesn’t carry a gun.

Of the 141 school districts across Pennsylvania that had some type of armed security staff last year, 88 used SROs, according to the state Department of Education.

Octorara’s decision is unusual in other ways, too.  Continue reading

Op-Ed: Pennsylvania’s Growing Heroin & Opioid Epidemic Demands Action

By Sen. Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi and Sen. Gene Yaw

about-heroin-2-300x200Over the past five years, nearly 3,000 heroin-related overdose deaths have been identified in Pennsylvania. Overdose deaths in our state have increased by an astounding 570 percent, rising from 2.7 to 15.4 per thousand over the last two decades.

Nationally, more people aged 25 to 64 are dying from heroin overdoses than in vehicle crashes.

This epidemic affects individuals of every age, gender, race, and background. The increased use of heroin, which often has roots in the abuse of prescription painkillers like Vicodin and OxyContin, has catapulted Pennsylvania to seventh in the nation for drug-related overdose deaths in the latest federal statistics.

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Action Manufacturing gets probation, $1.2 million fine for illegally storing explosive hazardous waste

gavel-3-600xx998-667-0-0Action Manufacturing Co. was sentenced Wednesday to five years of probation, as well as a $1.2 million fine, for storing explosive hazardous waste illegally at its Atglen, Pa., facility. According to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District Court Judge Nitza I. Quinones Alejandro also ordered an $800 special assessment.

Bristol, Pa.-based Action Manufacturing, which makes timing and arming devices for munitions and explosives, reportedly admitted to stockpiling explosive hazardous waste without a permit, instead of sending it to an approved treatment, storage and disposal facility.

The law requires companies like Action Manufacturing, which produce explosive solid waste, dispose of the hazardous material in accordance with the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.

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