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Times Leader 12-31-2011

Times Leader 12-31-2011

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Published by The Times Leader
The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader 12-31
The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader 12-31

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Published by: The Times Leader on Dec 31, 2011
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SON:PATERNODOINGWELL
A week after his 85thbirthday, former PennState football coach JoePaterno continues tobattle lung cancer and isback in his State Collegehome after a recent hos-pital stayfor aninjuredpelvis.His son,JayPaterno,went intodetailabout hisfather. “He’s doing well,he’s doing very, very well.For his birthday, we hadall17 of his grandkidsthere. It was fun for awhile and then it got tobe a little hectic.”
Sports,1B
SPORTSSHOWCASE
MUSIC CITY BOWL
MISS.STATE23WK.FOREST17
NHL
RANGERS4PANTHERS1SENATORS4FLAMES3CAPITALS3SABRES1PREDATORS2BLUES1
C M Y K
6
09815 10011
WILKES-BARRE, PA SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31, 2011 50¢
timesleader.com
T
he
T
imes
L
eader
JCC offers area youngstersfun activities and friendship
NEWS,3A
Once at winter camp ...
Gingrich weeps over mom,and Romney attacks Paul
NEWS,8A
Down to the wire in Iowa 
The color, once avoided,now encouraged by designers
ATHOME,1C
Homes catchina purple craze
INSIDE
ANEWS:
Local 3ANation & World 5AObituaries 8AEditorial 9A
BSPORTS:
Scoreboard 2BBusiness 7B
CATHOME:
Birthdays 4CMovies/TV 6CCrossword 7CFunnies 8C
DCLASSIFIED
 WEATHER
ChristinaKoscoPartlysunny,ashower.High47.Low35.
Details, Page 8B
 WILKES-BARREAstheNew Year looms, the mess-agefromtheLuzerneCoun-ty Courthouse rotunda Fri-daywasclear:Itisthedawnof a new day for the countyCourt of Common Pleas.“This is a historic day …thisisanawesomeday,”Lu-zerne County PresidentJudge Thomas Burke said,before presiding over theswearing-in of six new judg-es.One by one, each of thesix -- Jennifer Rogers, Mi-chael Vough, Joseph Skla-roskyJr.,LesaGelb,RichardHughesandFredPierantoni-- stood before a packedcourthouseandpromisedtouphold the Constitution of the United States.“We wear the robe to sig-nify we stand apart,” Burkesaid. “Each of us individual-lyisnotabigdeal,butwhat we do is a very big deal.” The Pledge of Allegianceechoed around the marble,century-oldbuilding,ontheday the Luzerne CountyCourt was restored to a fullcomplement of 10 judges.“This is the dawning of anewera,Rogers,44,ofHar- veysLakesaidafterthecere-mony. She will be handling family court matters.“We’re turning the page,”Hughes, 50, of Mountain Top, said. “Good things aregoing to happen.”Hughes was sworn in byPennsylvania SuperiorCourt President Judge Cor-reale Stevens.A symbol of those goodthings, Burke said, couldhave been that Superior
LUZERNE COUNTY JUSTICE
DON CAREY/THE TIMES LEADER
SeatedareJudgesLesaS.Gelb,WilliamH.Amesbury,PresidentJudgeThomasF.BurkeJr.,TinaPolachekGartley,andDavidW.Lupas.Standing,JudgesJenniferLynneRogers,FredA.Pierantoni,RichardM.Hughes,MichaelT.Vough,andJosephF.Sklarosky.
A new court, a new spirit
Six judges are sworn in toreconstitute a bench oncetarnished by scandal.
BySHEENADELAZIO
 sdelazio@timesleader.com
SeeJUDGES,Page10A
To see video,scan this QRcode into yoursmartphone orvisit
www.ti-mesleader.com
ONLINE
KINGSTON – Almost three years after hitting rock bottomandlosingher home, Nickie Pi-mental is getting her previouslife back with a rental to callhome and realistic goals tomeet.But do not call her a successstoryyetsheisuncomfortable with that term and categorizeshercomebackas“aworkinpro-gress.” The plight of Luzerne Coun-ty’s homeless has been in theforefrontinrecentmonths.Thelocal VISION men’s homelessshelterprogramended,withre-sponsibilitiesshiftedtoCatholicSocialServicestofillthatvoid.Also, the REACH homelessdaytime drop-in center in Wilkes-Barre closed during thesummerbecauseoffundingcutsandtwohomelessmendiedinafireinWilkes-Barre.Pimental, according to social workers, is an example of howsomeonecanfallfromamiddle-class existence into homeless-ness and then rise above it – if giventheproperhelp.Kristen Popolski, shelter di-rectorofRuth’sPlace,saidsheisseeingmorewomen,ranginginagefrom18to74,inthesamesit-uationPimentalhadbeenin.“Most are not chronicallyhomeless,”Popolskisaid.“Mostarehomelessduetoasituation.”Pimental,35,whogrewupin
‘Work in progress’ for new year 
PETE G. WILCOX/THE TIMES LEADER
NickiePimentalofKingstonplayswithhercatnamedLoginherKingstonapartmentonTuesday.
 Woman rises above homelessness
ByEILEENGODIN
Times Leader Correspondent
Ruth’s Place, shelter for singlewomen, 822-6817Mother Theresa’s Safe Haven,shelter for men, 825-9948HelpLine 829-1341Commission on Economic Op-portunity, 826-0510
HOMELESSSERVICES
SeePROGRESS,Page10A
Former Luzerne County bud-get/financechiefTomPribulahasagreed to step back into countygovernmentastheinterimmanag-er. Though temporary, it will be ahigh-pressure,consumingpostbe-causethemanagerwillbethego-topersonforhundredsofpressingde-cisionsthathavepiledupaspartof the conversion to home rule gov-ernment. Those deci-sions include who will be fur-loughed, who will be put incharge of divi-sions and elimi-nated row offic-es and how staff  willbeshuffledtocomplywiththeneworganizationalstructure. The manager also will recom-mend changes to the county bud-get,thoughhisinputwillhingeon whetherthenewcountycouncilis willingtoraisepropertytaxes.Prib-ulahasestimatedthe2012budgetadopted by outgoing commission-erswillrequireatleast150layoffs.Councilman-elect Rick Morelli verifiedtheappointment of Pribu-la,whichissettooccuratthefirstcounty council meeting at 11:30a.m.Monday.A majority of the council-electagreed on Pribula’s appointmentandsuppliedhimwithaletterofin-tenttotakethepositionfor$2,000per week plus benefits, Morellisaid.Pribula will serve up to sixmonthsoruntilapermanentman-agerisreadytotakeover.Hewillhaveuseofacountylap-topandcellphone,andtheappoint-ment won’t eliminate him fromconsideration for other futurecountypositions,Morellisaid.Morelli said he agreed to dis-closetheplanbecausetherewasnoconfidentiality agreement andPribulahadnooppositiontoreleas-inghisname.“Ithinkit’stherightthingforthepublic as well as employees toknow.It’simportantforthepublic
Pribulawill returnas interimmanager
The finalists for countymanager would not be able tostart right away.
SeePRIBULA,Page10A
Pribula
ByJENNIFERLEARN-ANDES 
 jandes@timesleader.com
 WILKES-BARRE – The sec-ond woman in Luzerne Countyhistory to be elected districtattorney was sworn into officeFriday.Stefanie Salavantis, 29, of Kingston Township, took theoath, administered by a long-time family friend, LuzerneCounty President Judge Tho-mas Burke.“I’m very excited to get inand get to work,” Salavantissaid after the short ceremonyheld on the third floor of theLuzerne County Courthouse.Salavantis’ first assistant,Samuel Sanguedolce, also wassworn in Friday, by LuzerneCounty Judge Fred Pierantoni.Salavantis, a Republican,narrowly defeated incumbentJackie Musto Carroll in theNovember general election.Salavantis spent nearly$270,000 in her campaignagainst Musto Carroll, whospent around $122,000. Salavan-tis waged a critical media blitzagainst Musto Carroll, includ-ing television, radio and printads that attacked her handling of the juvenile justice scandal.Salavantis has previously said
New DA Salavantis looks for smooth office transition
DON CAREY/THE TIMES LEADER
NewLuzerneCountyDistrictAttorneyStephanieSalavantisandfirstassistantSamSanguedolceweresworninFriday.
BySHEENADELAZIO
 sdelazio@timesleader.com
SeeSALAVANTIS,Page10A
Paterno
 
K
PAGE 2A SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31, 2011 THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com
Castrignano,MaryCheresko,StellaFarrell,JohnGiacomo,RaymondHahn,ShirleyKudey,StanleyNalewajko,HelenRose,ClarenceIITriplett,JosephSr.
OBITUARIES
Page 8A
BUILDINGTRUST
The Times Leader strives tocorrect errors, clarify storiesand update them promptly.Corrections will appear in thisspot. If you have informationto help us correct an inaccu-racy or cover an issue morethoroughly, call the newsroomat 829-7242.
HARRISBURG – One playermatched all five winningnumbers drawn in Friday’s“Pennsylvania Cash 5” gameand will receive $225,000.Lottery officials said 87players matched four num-bers and won $248 each and2,676 players matched threenumbers and won $13.50each.
LOTTERY
MIDDAYDRAWING
DAILY NUMBER
6-5-1
BIG FOUR
9-3-9-2
QUINTO
8-1-1-1-4
TREASURE HUNT
03-08-17-18-26NIGHTLYDRAWING
DAILY NUMBER
7-3-9
BIG FOUR
0-5-7-5
QUINTO
1-8-4-7-5
CASH FIVE
10-16-26-36-43
MEGA MILLIONS
04-24-45-46-52
MEGA BALL
1
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Delivery Monday–Sunday $3.50 per weekMailed Subscriptions Monday–Sunday$4.35 per week in PA$4.75 per week outside PAPublished daily by:Impressions Media15 N. Main St.Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711Periodicals postage paid atWilkes-Barre, PA and additional mailing officesPostmaster: Send address changesto Times Leader, 15 N. Main St.,Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711
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rived to find a portion of EastMain Street closed to traffic, firetrucks with their lights flashing blocking the roadway and hosessnaking across the pavement. WILKES-BARRE A three-alarmfireFridaynightcausedex-tensive damage to a house in theMiners Mills section of the city.No one was injured and fourpeoplewereabletogetoutsafelyof the three-story building at 30E. Main St.“ThefamilyisOK,saidActing Fire Chief Damian Lendacky.He said the fire started on thesecond floor and is not suspi-cious.Afireinspectorwasonthescene.“Itisunderinvestigation,”saidLendacky.Firefighters were called to thehouse around 8 p.m. and foundsmoke and flames on the upperfloors. Smoke billowed from athird-floor window facing thestreet. The second floor sustained ex-tensive fire damage and there was smoke and water damagethroughout the rest of the build-ing, said Lendacky. The fire was knocked down within an hour. There were noproblems fighting the fire, saidLendacky. While firefighters knockeddown the fire, family members weretryingtolocateJimCeccoli,co-owner of the building. The retired city firefighter ar-A firefighter accompanied himupasetofstairsonthesideofthehouse into the second floor andback down to the sidewalk. The interior was destroyed, hesaid.“Mywifesaiditstartedunderabed upstairs,” he said.“Wehadgueststoday,”hesaid,adding two grandsons were stay-ing in the house at the time.Ceccolisaidheserved28years withthedepartmentbeforeretir-ing in1998.
No injuries as fire damages W-B house
AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER
Thecauseofasmokyfireat30E.MainSt.,Wilkes-Barreisunderinvestigation.Theblazechasedfourpeoplefromthehouseco-own-edbyretiredfirefighterJimCeccoli.
The blaze started on thesecond floor, a fire officialsays. Four people escape.
ByJERRYLYNOTT 
 jlynott@timesleader.com
PEMBERTON, British Colum-bia — A warm spell and heavy, wet snow are creating a risk of avalanches in western Canada,including one that killed a back-country skier, officials said Fri-day.Royal Canadian Mounted Po-lice Staff Sgt. Alex Boden said aman in his 30s from Whistler,British Columbia, was criticallyinjured in a Thursday afternoonslide near Pemberton.Boden said an air rescue Thursdayafternoonwasimpossi-ble because of nightfall. The riskof more slides are inhibiting re-covery of the skier’s body. Themanwasskiingwiththreefriends on what had been a re-markable day of deep powder,fresh tracks and almost spring-like temperatures in the back-country trails in the CasperCreek region, northeast of Whis-tler. The skiers took to the trailsdespite warnings from the Cana-dian Avalanche Center of a highavalanche danger across almostallregionsoftheprovinceforthepast few days.
Temps, snowblamed foravalanches
The Associated Press
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador— U.S. Ambassador Mari Car-men Aponte is saying her good-byes in El Salvador after SenateRepublicans refused to ratify herin the post.Aponte has drawn fire for aneditorial she wrote in a Salvado-ran newspaper advocating ac-ceptance of gays and lesbians,andlong-standingrumorsofpastinvolvementwithamanoncebe-lieved linked to Cuban intelli-gence agencies.She has been serving under arecess appointment by PresidentBarack Obama since September2010.Deputy Chief of Mission SeanMurphy will be in charge of theembassy.ApontetoldanewsconferenceFriday she was “proud of the work we have done here.”
GOP-rejectedambassadorleaves her post
The Associated Press
PYONGYANG, North Korea— North Korea announced to-day that Kim Jong Un has beenofficially named supreme com-mander of the military, furtherstrengtheninghisauthorityafterthe death of his father, longtimeNorth Korean leader Kim Jong Il.Officials and state media havebestowed on Kim Jong Un, whoisinhislate20s,astringoftitlesas North Korea’s elite rallyaroundhiminthewakeofhisfa-ther’s death this month after 17 years in power.But the title Supreme Com-mander—anditsformalprocla-mation by the powerful PoliticalBureau of the Central Commit-tee of the Workers’ Party — is aclear sign that Kim Jong Un isfast consolidating power overNorth Korea. It’s also the lateststep in a burgeoning personalitycult around him.Kim Jong Un should be “theonly center of unity, cohesionand leadership” of the Workers’Party,NorthKorea’sstatemediasaid, and the 1.2 million-strong militaryshouldupholdthe“son-gun,” or military-first, politicslaid down by Kim Jong Il. The party said the countryshould unite around Kim Jong Un and strengthen “the mono-lithic leadership system of KimJong Un in the whole party andsociety.”An unannounced WorkersParty meeting Friday pro-claimed that the younger Kim“assumed supreme commander-ship of the Korean People’s Ar-my” according to a will made byKimJongIlonOct.8,theNorth’sofficial Korean Central NewsAgencysaidinastatementearlythis morning. ThemeetingoftheNorth’srul-ing party came one day after theofficialmourningperiodforKimJongIlendedandseniormilitaryandpoliticalofficialspubliclyde-claredKimJongUnleaderoftheparty, military and people at amemorialforhisfatherattendedby hundreds of thousands. Titlesareanimportantpartof NorthKoreaseffortstolinkKimJong Un to the myth-building surrounding the Kim family leg-acy.KimIlSung,thecountry’sfirstandonlypresident,retainstheti-tle Eternal President even afterhis death.Kim Jong Il held three mainpositions: chairman of the Na-tional Defense Commission,generalsecretaryoftheWorkers’Party and supreme commanderoftheKoreanPeople’sArmy.Ac-cording to the constitution, hisposition as chairman of the Na-tional Defense Commissionmade him Supreme Leader of North Korea.KimJongUnwasmadeafour-star general last year and ap-pointed a vice chairman of theCentral Military Commission of the Workers’ Party. Since his fa-ther’s death, he has racked upmajor titles from officials andstate media: Great Successor,Supreme Leader and GreatLeader earlier Friday. And nowhe has officially been named Su-preme Commander. The North has made great ef-fortstoshowtheworldaunifiedface, but Kim Jong Un’s age andinexperience have raised ques-tionsoutsideNorthKoreaabouthis leadership of a nation en-gaged in delicate negotiationsover its nuclear program andgrappling with decades of eco-nomichardshipandchronicfoodshortages. TheNorthwarnedFridaythattherewouldbenosofteningofitsposition toward South Korea’sgovernment.North Korea’s powerful Na-tionalDefenseCommissionsaidthe country would never deal with South Korean PresidentLee Myung-bak, a conservative whoendedano-strings-attachedaid policy toward the North in2008.“Wedeclaresolemnlyandcon-fidently that the foolish politic-iansaroundtheworld,including the puppet group in South Ko-rea, should not expect anychange from us,” the NationalDefense Commission said.
N. Korean boss takes military reins
AP PHOTO
ThiscommemorativepostagestamphonorslateNorthKoreanleaderKimJongIlandhisson,KimJongUn.
A personality cult developsaround the nation’s newleader, Kim Jong Un.
The Associated Press
MADISON,Wis.—Aprosecu-tor asked the Wisconsin Su-premeCourtonFridaytoreopenhis lawsuit challenging Gov.Scott Walker’s contentious col-lective bargaining law, contend-ing a justice who voted to dis-missthesuitearlierthisyeargotfree legal help from the firm de-fending the law.Dane County District Attor-ney Ismael Ozanne argued in fil-ingswiththecourtthatitshould vacate its decision because Jus-tice Michael Gableman neverdisclosed his arrangement withthe Michael Best and Friedrichlawfirm.Wisconsin’sethicscodeprohibits state officials from ac-cepting free gifts, and the judi-cialethicscodebarsjudgesfromacceptinggiftsfromanyonelike-ly to appear before them.Ozanne asked the court to re-instate a circuit judge’s earlierrulingdeclaringthelawvoidanddisqualify Gableman from par-ticipatinginfurtherproceedingsif he won’t recuse himself.“Reasonable, well-informedpeople would reasonably ques-tion Justice Gableman’s abilityto be impartial under the factspresented here,” he wrote. “Re-spectfully, any litigant in anycase deserves to have his caseheardbyajudgewhohasnotse-cretly received a valuable giftfrom the other side’s lawyer.”Gableman’s attorney, VietDinh, didn’t immediately returnamessagelateFridayafternoon.He told the Milwaukee JournalSentinel this week that hedoesn’tbelievethefreelegalser- vicesamountedtoagift.Amess-ageleftatMichaelBestandFrie-drich’sMadisonofficewasn’tim-mediately returned.Ozanne filed his lawsuit inMarch, alleging Republican law-makers violated open meetingslawswhentheyconvenedacom-mittee to revise the collectivebargaining measure withoutproper public notice. The meet-ing came during the height of massive around-the-clock pro-tests at the state Capitol againstthelegislation,whicheliminatedmost public workers’ unionrights. Walker, a Republican,said the legislation was neededto help local governments ab-sorb deep cuts in state aid.
DA asks Wis. court to reopen union lawsuit
Lawsuit challenges Gov. ScottWalker’s collective bargaininglaw over free legal help.
ByTODDRICHMOND
 Associated Press
 
C M Y K
THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31, 2011 PAGE 3A
L
OCAL
timesleader.com
Pittston-based Joseph J. Joyce Asso-ciates Inc. won’t be the broker for Lu-zerne County government insurancepackages next year because of past dis-crepancies, commissioners said Thurs-day.Commissioners voted Thursday topurchase13 insurance policies throughEastern Insurance Company.Mental Health/Mental Retardationand Agency on Aging liability policies were purchased through Brown andBrown Insurance Company.All insurance was competitively bidto obtain the lowest price, and com-missioners said the county savedabout $140,000 while increasing cov-erage.County officials asked the Pennsyl- vania Insurance Commissioner in No- vember to investigate discrepancies ininformation provided by the Joycefirm.Companies that bid on county insur-ance must carry at least $5 million perclaim in errors-and-omissions coveragein case the county has a problem with work performed by the broker.Joyce supplied the county with acertificate of liability insurance last year and this year stating that it hadthe $5 million coverage through Dar- win Select Insurance Co., but countyController Walter Griffith said he ob-tained documents from Darwin thatindicate Joyce Associates never pur-chased that much coverage.Griffith said Darwin provided paper- work showing that Joyce Associateshad $1 million in errors-and-omissionsliability insurance per claim from Jan.15, 2010, to Jan. 15, 2011, and has $3million in coverage from Jan. 15, 2011,to Jan. 15, 2012.A representative of Joyce Associatestold county officials that two othercompanies affiliated with Joyce Associ-ates -- Joyce Jackman & Bell LLC andJoyce Haggerty Bell Insurance GroupLLC -- carry an additional $8 million inerrors-and-omissions insurance thatcould be accessed by the county.Griffith said he and other county of-ficials do not believe those policiescomply with the county requirementbecause the companies were not hiredby the county to provide insurance orlisted in documentation submitted tothe county at the time of the insuranceawards. The following policies were awardedthrough Eastern Insurance: fiduciaryliability, public defenders liability,emergency dispatchers’ liability, lawenforcement liability, excess workers’compensation, public officials/employ-ment practices liability, Keystone JobCorps commercial property, childrenand youth liability, group life insur-ance/accidental death and dismem-berment, lead abatement, contractors’pollution liability, medical stop lossand general county insurance.Commissioner Chairwoman Ma-ryanne Petrilla said the policies had tobe renewed by the end of the yearbecause they are expiring. The policieshave one-year terms, she said.
COMMISSIONER ACTIONS
Past discrepancies are cited as reason for switching to new carriers
County drops Joyce insurance
ByJENNIFERLEARN-ANDES 
 jandes@timesleader.com
 WILKES-BARRE–Anattorneyfacing child corruption charges is allowed totravelabroadtocoachboysinsoccerde-spite a bail condition that he is not tohaveunsupervisedcontactwithminors.Robert Zanicky, 38, a founding mem-berandofficerwithUnitedSoccerTrain-ing Academy, was uneasy in his seat ashislawyersandaprosecutorsquaredoff before Luzerne County Judge WilliamAmesbury on Friday.Zanicky frequently grabbed his law- yers, Ed Olexa and Bill Ruzzo, wanting to whisper in their ears during the 30-minute hearing.Zanicky surren-dered Wednesday ontwo counts of corrup-tion of minors filed byKingston Townshippolice that allege heenticed two girls, 17and 16, to have sex atthe Wilkes-BarreLodgemotelonKidderStreet. The elder teen had consensual sex with Zanicky while the younger girl ranout of the motel room, according tocharges filed.Police said they seized motel recordsindicatingZanickyregisteredaroomonJan. 31to Feb.1and Feb.12 to Feb.13.At his arraignment on Wednesday,Zanicky informed District Judge James Tupper that he had a planned month-long business trip to Ghana, Africa, tocoach boys in soccer. The trip is sched-uledforJan.6toFeb.6.Tuppersetacon-ditionofhis$25,000unsecuredbailthathewasnottohaveunsupervisedcontact with minors.A representative from the District At-torney’s Office was not at the arraign-ment to voice an objection to Zanickytraveling to Africa. But Assistant Dis-trictAttorneyJennyRobertslaterfiledamotion to modify bail conditions im-posed by Tupper.During Friday’s hearing, Roberts saidshe would have asked the district judgeto prohibit Zanicky from traveling abroad,claimingthereisnowaytomon-itorZanicky’smovementsoractionsinaforeign country.“You want me to cancel his trip?”Amesbury asked.“Yes, that’s exactly what I’m asking,”Roberts replied.Ruzzo said Zanicky had traveled toGhana in March and returned to theUnited States knowing he was being in- vestigated.Philip Brogan, an officer with the soc-cer academy, testified Zanicky’s respon-sibilityinGhanaismakingcontactswithGhana officials and families. WithoutZanicky in Ghana, Brogan claimed, thecoachingofhundredsofunderprivilegedchildren 16 to 18 years old would be in jeopardy.Amesbury pondered his decision forseveral minutes before making his rul-ing, allowing Zanicky to go to Africa.“Ishareyourconcernsbutwe’reatthemost preliminary stages of this matter,”Amesburysaid.“Thereisaburdenofin-nocence.”
Sex chargeno barrier toAfrica trip
Robert Zanicky will be allowed tocoach soccer abroad.
ByEDWARDLEWIS 
elewis@timesleader.com
Zanicky
DALLAS – The Jewish CommunityCenter of Wyoming Valley’s WinterCampofferedareayoungstersfunactiv-itiesandfriendshipduringtheweekbe-tweenChristmasandtheNewYearholi-day.SaraPisarz,youthdirectorattheJCCand camp coordinator, said the eventprovides opportunity for youngsters toenjoy such activities as a day at Great Wolf Lodge in the Poconos and rollerskating at Rollaway in Dallas. About 25childrenhaveattendedeachday,with61attending during the Great Wolf Lodgeadventure.“Youngstersfromalloverthearea,in-cluding Wilkes-Barre, Dallas and King-ston,cometothisseasonalprogramandallourfeedbackhasbeenverypositive,” said Pisarz, as shehanded a peanut butter sand- wichtoahungryyoungster.Pisarz added that with thechallenging economy andmoreparentsworkingduring the holiday week, the camp was necessary and was flour-ishing, with consistent attendancethroughouttheweek. The program, which runs Mondaythrough Friday the week betweenChristmas and New Year’s, is open tochildrenfrom5to12.Itrunsfrom9a.m.to3p.m.dailyandprovideslunchforthechildren and transports them to sched-uledactivities.Youngsters can attend for the entire week or just for a day or two. BonnieHost,ofNewYorkCity,inthearea visiting family for theholidays, said that it was agreatopportunityforhersonto enjoy his vacation fromschool.“I loved it,” said Hostssmiling son Santiago Foncil-las.“Weevenwenttothemo- vies.”Danielle Pisarz, a junior at KutztownUniversity who was a counselor for the weekandhasbeenacounselorsinceshe was12,saidthecampisasmuchfunforthecounselorsasitisforchildren.Brittany McKeown, a graduate stu-dent at Misericordia University, alsosaid she thinks it is a wonderful way tospendaweek.Shehasbeenacounseloratthecampforthelastfouryears.
JCCHOLIDAYACTIVITIES
FRED ADAMS/FOR THE TIMES LEADER
Isabella Foncillas and Olivia Roth share in the fun during JCC Winter Camp Skating Party held at Rollaway SkatingRink in Dallas.
Cozytimeatcamp
ByGERIGIBBON
Times Leader Correspondent
For additionalinformation aboutupcoming JCCactivities, log on to
www.jewish-wilkes-barre.org
.
ONLINE
Organizations seeking a share of the $2.15 million fund established byRobert Mericle to benefit LuzerneCounty children will have to competefor the money through a program runby the Pennsylvania Commission onCrime and Delinquency.Mike Pennington, director of thecommission’s Office of Juvenile Jus-tice and Delinquency Prevention,said details regarding the types of organizations that may be eligible forthe funds and allowable uses for themoney have not yet been worked out.He expects further details will be re-leased within a few weeks. The commission is a state agencyestablished to improve the criminal justice system. Among its numerousduties is to act as aclearing house for grantsthat fund criminal jus-tice related projects.Organizations seeking any portion of the Mer-icle fund will be re-quired to submit an application, which will be reviewed by a commit-tee within the Office of Juvenile Jus-tice and Delinquency Prevention. The committee will then make a rec-ommendation to the commission’sboard, which makes the final deter-mination.Mericle, the region’s largest real es-tate developer, agreed to establishthe fund as part of his guilty plea inSeptember 2009 to charges related tothe Luzerne County juvenile justicescandal.Prosecutors say Mericle failed toreport his knowledge that former judges Mark Ciavarella and MichaelConahan had taken steps to concealthe source of $1.8 million he had paidthem for helping him secure the con-tracts to build the PA Child Care and Western PA Child Care juvenile de-tention centers.U.S. District Judge Edwin Kosik on Thursday issued an order directing the money, which had been held inan escrow account, be released to thecommission within five days.Pennington said he expects a fund-ing application announcement will beissued within the next few weeks.Applicants can then apply for themoney through the grant applicationsection of the commission’s Website: www.pccd.state.pa.us.
Commission will allot Mericle money to eligible groups
ByTERRIEMORGAN-BESECKE
tmorgan@timesleader.com
 WILKES-BARRE
Mayor to take oath of office
Mayor Thomas M. Leighton, Con-troller-elect Kathy Kane and City Coun-cil-elect will take their oaths of office ina ceremony on Tuesday at 5 p.m. in thelobby of the F.M. Kirby Center on Pub-lic Square.Council members Bill Barrett, Dis-trict D, and Mike Merritt, District E, were elected to new terms. GeorgeBrown, District A, Tony George, Dis-trict B, and Maureen Lavelle, District C, were elected to their first terms oncouncil. Council members each serve afour-year term. Kane has previouslyserved on council, most recently as itschairwoman.Leighton served12 years on citycouncil before he was elected mayor in2003 and again in 2007. This will be histhird-term as the city’s chief executive. The swearing-in is open to the public.
 WILKES-BARRE
Kulick’s wife seeks divorce
 The wife of Luzerne County busi-nessman Robert Kulick is seeking adivorce.Michele Mattioli-Kulick on Thursdayfiled documents in Luzerne CountyCourt requesting to divorce Kulick, 63,a one-time associate of reputed formermob boss William D’Elia.Kulick was convict-ed of being a felon inpossession of a firearmand was sentenced to37 months in prison inSeptember 2009 but was released after thecase was sent back forre-sentencing inMarch and U.S. Dis-trict Judge James Munley altered hissentence to time served.During his March sentencing hear-ing, Kulick’s attorneys noted Kulick hasstruggled with a lifelong alcohol prob-lem but enrolled in a voluntary inten-sive treatment program during hisincarceration. Kulick called his time inprison “life-changing” and said he real-ized how much he loved his sobriety.In a supplemental filing requesting that she maintain sole custody of theirBear Creek Township home during divorce proceedings, Mattioli-Kulickalleges Kulick has resumed drinking and he has been verbally abusive to his wife and children.
HARRISBURG
DOC appointments made
 The Pennsylvania Department of Corrections announced Friday it hasappointed John Murray and DavidPitkins as regional deputy secretaries.Murray will supervise the10 statecorrectional institutions in the centralregion of Pennsylva-nia, including SCIDallas, SCI Retreatand SCI Waymart.In his 31-year career with the department,Murray worked his way up from correc-tions officer to coun-selor to unit and facil-ity manager. In 2010, he was namedsuperintendent of SCI Camp Hill inCumberland County.Pitkins will supervise nine institu-tions in the western region of the state.During his 23-year career, Pitkinsmoved from chaplaincy program direc-tor to deputy superintendent for cen-tralized services and deputy superin-tendent for facility management. In2009, he was named superintendent of SCI Laurel Highlands in SomersetCounty.
I N B R I E F
SUBMITTED PHOTO
Concert ‘Only the Beginning’ for city
U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Hazleton,welcomes rock legend Chicago to hishometown of Hazleton last month.Chicago’s historic concert on Nov. 27marked the first major concert eventin Hazleton in nearly 40 years. Pic-tured from left are: concert producerJim Della Croce, Robert Lamm ofChicago, U.S. Rep Lou Barletta, MaryGrace Barletta and Chicago’s WalterParazaider.
MurrayKulick

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