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Everett Niemela Everett Arthur Niemela, 90, educator, woodworker, and WWII veteran, died Sept. 13, 2012 of natural causes at White Horse Village continuing care community in Newtown Square, PA. Mr. Niemela was a long-time resident of Ben Avon. Born in rural Long Branch, PA to Finnish immigrants, Mr. Niemela was the youngest of 11 children growing up on a working farm. He graduated from Charleroi High School in 1939. He volunteered for the Army Air Force at the start of World War II and served as a flight engineer on a B-24 crew stationed in England, earning three Bronze Stars.


The family of Staff Sgt. Eric Holman -- brother Kevin, parents David and Carol, and sister Lisa -- share a photo montage after learning of Eric’s death in Afghanistan. The family formerly lived in Ohio Township, and Eric graduated from Avonworth High School.


The seats may have changed but the song remained the same as Tuesday's Bellevue Council meeting became particularly hostile.

In criticism led by Mayor George Doscher and council member Kathy Coder, the council majority was accused of recommending a "liar" for a job, making the borough look bad because of a recommendation for the joint planning commission, and violating the borough's administrative code by not having all of council involved in evaluating prospective engineers.


The Northgate School Board can balance the coming year's budget, but it will not be able to raise taxes enough next year to fund the 2012-13 budget.

That is the rationale expressed by a majority of board members for why they plan to vote in favor of a 2011-12 property tax millage increase next week.

Finance committee chairman Daniel O'Keefe said at the board's work session on June 13 that of the $1.6 million cut from Northgate's budget for the coming year, about $1 million is a one-time savings due to retirements and staff furloughs.





By Lois Thomson

Ben Avon Mayor Bob Jones' lunch with Ben Avon Heights officials caused a bit of a stir at the borough's council meeting Tuesday.

Joined by Ben Avon Council President Lloyd Corder, Jones picked up the tab for a business luncheon with Ben Avon Heights Mayor Scott Dismukes and council president Mark Davis, at a cost of $59.07.

When Jones asked council for reimbursement, finance chair Judy Konitsney said the borough has never paid for a business luncheon, and added, "We have a borough hall if you want to hold a meeting."


Bellevue may hire a graduate student to serve as interim director of administrative services.

Members of Bellevue Council held a special meeting Tuesday to discuss four options presented by finance committee chairman Mark Panichella, and seemed to reach a compromise on how to manage the borough's government until a permanent DAS can be hired to replace Connie Flasher, who resigned last month.


With five council seats to be filled, the Nov. 3 general election is an important one for Bellevue. There are contests to be decided in each of the borough's three wards.

First Ward

Voters will choose two representatives from among four candidates running for council in the first ward. Incumbents Jane Braunlich (Democrat) and Kathleen Coder (Republican) are joined on their respective ballots by newcomers Susan Schafer and David Piet.


Early probation end?

Bellevue Council could decide whether to end an employee's probationary period early so that he will be eligible for borough-paid health insurance.

Council member David Gillingham Jr. said at the Sept. 30 pre-council meeting that if council releases recent public works hire George Bauer from probation a month early, he would be eligible to receive insurance benefits through the borough.


Bellevue Council wants to negotiate with the Northgate School District over sharing the cost of the Glaser Avenue rehabilitation, but council members disagree on what portion Bellevue should contribute.