Last week’s Pittsburgh news, today #26: reconsider the weasel

For those who don't read the news everyday, but would still like to know what's going on in Pittsburgh.

photo by brian conway

The latest from East Palestine

Unequal’ PA voting reviewed.  In a first-of-its-kind review, Spotlight PA partnered with Votebeat to review how each of PA’s 67 counties process and review mail-in ballots. Kate Huangpu and Carter Walker report

Waterfront imposes youth curfew. The Waterfront shopping center in Homestead is now enforcing a 6pm curfew for people under 18 without a supervising adult. Julia Felton reports for the Tribune-Review

Anonymous buys Wabash piers. Two historic piers from the former Wabash Bridge have been sold to an anonymous buyer. Katie Blackley reports for WESA. MORE: The winning bid was not disclosed, but the asking price was $300,000.  Stephanie Ritenbaugh reports for the Tribune-Review.

PA sues over pot program. The Department of Health has sued to keep medical marijuana program data secret. Ed Mahon reports for Spotlight PA. RELATED: 5 ways PA’s medical marijuana laws could change in 2023:  Ed Mahon reports for Spotlight PA.

Missing gold mystery deepens! An update from LWPNT #4: After a court-ordered release of “photos, videos, maps and other documents” from the FBI’s search for missing Civil War-era gold, the treasure hunter who originally located the suspected cache is now calling it a “cover-up.” The AP reports.

Reconsider the weasel. The Pennsylvania Game Commission is considering a plan to reintroduce a native species of weasel, the American marten, to state woodlands. The tiny, native weasel, also known as the pine marten, was driven out of PA by human encroachment in 1900. Renatta Signorini reports for the Tribune-Review.

Subsidies for homeless rentals. Allegheny County’s Department of Human Services “will provide a one-time payment of $2,000 to landlords willing to rent apartment units to people transitioning out of shelters.” Eric Jankiewicz reports for PublicSource

Politicians fight for Fogel. Nine US representatives have written Secretary of State Anthony Blinken demanding answers regarding Marc Fogel, an Oakmont teacher who has been held in Russian captivity for 18 months in a situation remarkably similar to that of WNBA star Brittney Griner. But unlike Griner, who was released in a prisoner swap, the State Department has never declared Fogel “wrongfully detained.” (More in LWPNT #9).  Paula Reed Ward reports for the Tribune-Review.

Shapiro denounces death penalty. Governor Josh Shapiro calls on the PA legislature to abolish capital punishment. Brian Saunders reports for PhillyVoice. MORE GOV NEWS: Shapiro sat courtside at a Sixers game with a donor last week, Stephen Caruso reports for Spotlight PA, and he and his staff also accepted Super Bowl tickets. Also from Spotlight PA.

School district wealth gap. How will a recent Commonwealth Court ruling that found Pennsylvania’s school funding system unconstitutional impact education funding in Allegheny County? Jamie Wiggan and Jordana Rosenfeld report for Pittsburgh City Paper.

Fetterman sidelined ‘for weeks. Senator John Fetterman is “likely to remain hospitalized for a few weeks,” after admitting himself to Walter Reed Medical Center with clinical depression. WGAL reports.

Pittsburgh sculptor’s overdue moment. Thaddeus Mosley, the celebrated, 96-year-old Pittsburgh sculptor of wood, discusses his recent “professional uptick.”  Ross Mantle interviews Mosley for the New York Times. MORE: Take a trip to Mosley’s studio in this 2019 video from the Carnegie Museum of Art:

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He is a 2x 2023 Western PA Press Club Golden Quill award winner, in feature and business reporting. And a 3x finalist in the investigative reporting category.

He is a 2018 first prize winner in environmental reporting from the Keystone Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for reporting on lead in Pittsburgh’s drinking water.

In 2022 and 2021, he was awarded a grant from The Gumshoe Group to support his investigative reporting.