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After citation, school suspends bus driver



Published: Thu, May 3, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



After citation, schoolsuspends bus driver

SALEM -- City school officials have suspended a bus driver whose bus was in a traffic accident during a school field trip.

Driver Joan Wellendorf, 32, of Harrison Avenue, was given three days off without pay, schools Superintendent Dave Brobeck said. School officials continue to investigate the crash and further discipline may be imposed, Dr. Brobeck said.

Wellendorf was cited by the Ohio State Highway Patrol Ravenna Post for following too closely after the April 24 accident on Interstate 76 in Portage County. Wellendorf was trailing another Salem school bus when that bus stopped on the highway and Wellendorf's bus smashed into it, the patrol said.

The field trip to Akron consisted of fourth- through sixth-grade pupils, seven of whom were examined at an Akron hospital after the crash. None was seriously injured.

Opposed to authority

NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Lawrence County Council of Governments is considering forming a regional development authority, but not everyone's happy about it.

Dan Vogler, Neshannock Township supervisor, is concerned about an authority's eminent domain power. Vogler said he was worried that a countywide authority might take land, even if people in the community opposed it. Other officials disagreed, saying the power would be used sparingly.

Linda Nitch, executive director of the Lawrence County Economic Development Authority, said an authority would be beneficial because it's the only entity that could take land through eminent domain for private use. Municipalities and school districts can only take land for public use. Council of government members said they plan to discuss the idea again at future meetings.

Considering campaign

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- William W. Scranton has been traveling across the state to gauge support for a possible campaign for next year's Republican nomination for governor.

Scranton lost one of the closest races for governor in the state's history 15 years ago.

"I have unfinished business," Scranton, 53, said Wednesday.

Scranton said he has not decided if he is going to run.

A moderate who was lieutenant governor from 1979 to 1987, Scranton has received encouragement from some GOP leaders who believe he would be a more attractive candidate than Attorney General Mike Fisher, the party's conservative front-runner. State Treasurer Barbara Hafer also has announced she's running for governor next year.

Scranton's father, William W. Scranton, was a former governor of Pennsylvania.

Gunshot victim dies

YOUNGSTOWN -- Gunshot victim James Robinson, 24, of Stewart Avenue died Wednesday in St. Elizabeth Health Center.

Robinson was shot in the head in a car Monday evening on Logan Avenue.

The driver told police that seven to eight shots were fired from a car that pulled up behind him near Hubbard Road.

The driver was unable to give police a description of who fired.

Sentenced in fraud

UNIONTOWN, Pa. (AP) -- An unsuccessful Fayette County politician who is the brother of a county commissioner will spend two to 23 months in jail for insurance fraud.

Judge Ralph C. Wartman also ordered Michael J. Cavanagh, who ran for the state Legislature twice and is the brother of Fayette County Commissioner Sean Cavanagh, to pay a $1,078 fine.

Cavanagh was convicted in April of insurance fraud, forgery, tampering with records and criminal attempt to commit theft for filing a $1,373 claim for a 1996 car accident.

Cavanagh filed the false insurance claim to Allstate Insurance Group two years after his rental car was damaged. Prosecutors said the car was repaired for just $106.

He was arrested in January 2000 and was placed in a program for first-time, nonviolent offenders, but failed to pay a fine and do community service.

Murder-plot sentence

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (AP) -- A Cambria County woman has been sentenced to five years in prison for arranging a foiled murder-for-hire plot against the father of her child two years ago.

Leslie Ann Black, 27, of Sidman was convicted last summer of mailing $100 to FBI Special Agent David Zacur, who was working undercover and posed as a hit man.




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