Police Officers Honored for Efforts to Curb Aggressive Driving

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Pennsylvania Aggressive Driving Enforcement and Education Project (PAADEEP) recognized two northwest Pennsylvania police officers for their efforts to reduce the number of aggressive driving crashes.

The officers were nominated by the police chiefs from their respective departments due to their participation in the 2018 aggressive driving enforcement and education initiative. They were recognized during a recent regional meeting for the program.

Awardees included the following officers:

  • Lieutenant Darin Baker, Sugarcreek Police Department, Venango County; and
  • Patrolman Christopher Buckner, Millcreek Township Police Department, Erie County.

Aggressive driving behaviors include speeding, tailgating, failing to stop at red lights or stop signs, weaving through traffic, passing on the right, and failing to yield to oncoming traffic. During the three waves of the 2018 initiative, 7,752 citations were recorded.

As a part of the second aggressive driving enforcement and education wave, Pennsylvania State Police and 215 municipal agencies will partner in this initiative. The local police agencies participating include Erie, Millcreek Township, Hermitage, Sharon, Franklin, Oil City and Sugarcreek. The enforcement wave is scheduled from March 18 to April 28, 2019.  

Additional information on aggressive driving is available online at www.PennDOT.gov/safety.

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PennDOT Announces New Vehicle Registration Plates

Recent legislation allows the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) to now offer many new types of vehicle registration plates to its customers. 

Five of the new plates offer recognition for veterans, with two special funds plates and a historic military vehicle registration plate rounding out the new offerings.

Proceeds from the two special funds plates will help raise funds for worthy causes. The first of these is a new Distracted Driving Awareness registration plate. It is available for a motorcycle and a passenger car or truck with a registered gross weight of not more than 14,000 pounds or a motor home. The plate costs $40 with proceeds used to advance public education and outreach on the dangers posed by distracted driving. The other is an Honoring Our Women Veterans registration plate, available for a passenger car or truck with a registered gross weight of not more than 14,000 pounds. Fifteen dollars of the plate’s $35 cost goes to the Veterans Trust Fund to be used for programs and resources that assist women veterans. 

Three of the new plates – the Soldiers Medal registration plate, the Presidential Service Badge registration plate and the Legion of Merit registration plate – recognize veterans’ special contributions during their service. All are available for passenger cars or trucks with a registered gross weight of not more than 14,000 pounds for a fee of $20. Veterans must be able to show that they are recipients of the respective awards.

New for motorcycle owners is the Purple Heart Medal Motorcycle registration plate, which displays the words “Combat Wounded Veteran” across the bottom of the registration plate. Applicants must provide proof that they were the recipient of a Purple Heart Medal. Purple Heart registration plates are available for a fee of $11.

Our comrades-in-arms from other countries can apply for a Veterans of an Allied Foreign Country registration plate. It may be used on passenger cars or trucks with a registered gross weight of not more than 14,000 pounds. The fee for the plate is $20.

Among the selection of new plates is a Historic Military Vehicle registration plate. This registration plate is for antique or classic vehicles that were manufactured for use in any country’s military forces. The vehicles must be maintained to represent their original military design and markings. This plate is available for both historic military vehicles and historic military motorcycles. The fee for either military vehicle or motorcycle plates is $75.

More information, to include eligibility requirements and images of registration plates, is available at www.dmv.pa.gov by checking Registration Plates under Vehicle Services.

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Spring Clean-Up Day

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Borough of Sugarcreek has announced the 2019 Spring Clean-Up Day.

Saturday May 4, 2019 from 7 AM til 3 PM at the Borough Building.
*For Borough residents only

Items NOT accepted:
Lawn clippings, leaves, twigs/branches, brush, etc.

Appliances MUST have Freon removed before disposal.

Dried, empty paint cans with lids off will be accepted.

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REAL IDs Now Available to Pennsylvania Residents

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is proud to announce that optional REAL ID-compliant driver’s licenses and photo ID cards are now available for Pennsylvania residents who want one.

A federally-accepted form of identification (whether it’s a Pennsylvania REAL ID driver’s license or ID card, a U.S. Passport/Passport Card, a military ID, etc.) must be used as identification to board a commercial flight or visit a secure federal building that requires ID at the door on and after October 1, 2020.There is no requirement that any resident obtain a REAL ID and PennDOT will continue to offer standard-issue driver’s licenses and photo IDs.

Federal REAL ID regulations require that PennDOT verify a customer’s identity, social security number, Pennsylvania residency, and name changes (if applicable), even if a customer already has a PA driver’s license or ID card. More info about document requirements, including a printable document checklist, can be found on the Document Check page of the PennDOT Driver and Vehicle Services website.

Customers have three options for obtaining a REAL ID product: customers may order their REAL ID online if they have been pre-verified; they can visit any PennDOT Driver’s License Center, have their documents verified and imaged, and their REAL ID product will be mailed to them within 15 business days; or they can visit one of twelve REAL ID Centers and receive their REAL ID product over-the-counter at the time of service.

When a customer gets their first REAL ID product, they will pay a one-time fee of $30, plus a renewal fee (current renewal fee is $30.50 for a four-year non-commercial driver’s license or a photo ID). The expiration date of their initial REAL ID product will include any time remaining on their existing non-REAL ID product, plus an additional four years, unless the customer is over 65 and has a two-year license. This expiration date structure means that the customer won’t “lose” time that they’ve already paid for. After the initial REAL ID product expires, the customer will pay no additional fee, beyond regular renewal fees, to renew a REAL ID product.

PennDOT has upgraded seven of its existing driver’s license centers to allow for over-the-counter issuance of REAL ID (Williamsport, Wilkes-Barre, Rockview in Centre County, Erie, Altoona, Norristown and South 70th Street in Philadelphia) and added the following new locations, which are now open for business:

  • 1025 Washington Pike, Rt. 50, Bridgeville;
  • ?143 S. Gulph Road, King of Prussia;
  • ?1101 MacArthur Road, Allentown;
  • 429 North Enola Road, Enola; and
  • 2090 Lincoln Highway East., Lancaster.

REAL ID-compliant products are marked with a gold star in the upper right corner, standard-issue (non-compliant) products include the phrase “Not for REAL ID Purposes,” per federal regulations. Sample images can be viewed on PennDOT’s website.

More information about REAL ID in Pennsylvania, including frequently asked questions and information on documents required for REAL ID, can be found at www.penndot.gov/REALID.

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Northwest Commission Launches Online Survey & Will Gather Input for Regional Transportation Plan

The Northwest Commission has launched an online survey to gauge public input and opinion as it advances its work on an update of its regional long-range transportation plan (LRTP). Upon its completion later this year, the plan will serve as a 20-year blueprint as to how state and federal investments should be made across a 5-county region that includes Clarion, Crawford, Forest, Venango, and Warren Counties. The Commission last updated the plan in June 2015.

Each year approximately $56.6 million in state and federal funds is invested into the region’s transportation system. The LRTP will include an “investment plan” that includes potential projects to be considered by the Northwest Commission and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation as additional funding becomes available. 

The online survey is available at https://NW-LRTP.metroquest.com. The survey is interactive and participants are able to offer feedback on regional transportation priorities and suggested project needs through use of an interactive map.

“The survey provides an excellent opportunity for the public to provide input into the process in a user-friendly and convenient way,” said Travis Siegel, Regional Planning Manager at the Northwest Commission. The Commission is also planning to make the draft plan available at upcoming events throughout the region to gather public insights. A full list of events will be available in early March.

“The Commission is seeking to engage all users of our transportation system: students, workers, seniors, business owners, and tourists,” Siegel said. “By working together to define what our specific planning needs are, we can begin drafting the policies and identifying the projects we need to improve the region’s mobility and economic development potential.”

The Northwest Commission is leading the update of the transportation plan, in cooperation with PennDOT and technical consulting assistance from Michael Baker International, Inc. It is being guided by a project advisory committee consisting of representatives from the region’s five counties, the Oil Region Alliance, and the Crawford Area Transit Authority (CATA).

“This process is a regional conversation and an important opportunity for those who live and work within the region to discuss how we want to address transportation and traffic issues over the long-term,” Siegel said. “We all have a stake in those decisions, for our own future and economic competitiveness.”

About The Northwest Commission

The Northwest Commission is a Local Development District charged with administering services and programs to drive growth, create jobs and improve the region’s quality of life. It is also a formal partner with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and provides staff administration for the Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC), which controls how state and federal dollars are spent on transportation projects throughout the region. Offices are located at 395 Seneca Street, Oil City, PA. For more information, visit www.northwestpa.org.

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Criminal Mischief

Sugarcreek Borough Police Department is investigating 6 different incidents of criminal mischief that occurred during November 16 – 19, 2018. Someone used paint to deface Sugarcreek Borough traffic signs and someone also used paint to deface the side of two buildings.

Anyone with any information is asked to call the Sugarcreek Borough Police Department at 814-437-3703 and you can remain anonymous.

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Northwest Pennsylvania Police Departments to Participate in Holiday Seat-Belt Enforcement Mobilization

Click It or Ticket

To increase safety on Pennsylvania’s roadways during the busy holiday season, law enforcement agencies in Erie, Mercer, and Venango counties will join the Pennsylvania State Police and nearly 250 local departments statewide to participate in increased seat-belt enforcement from November 19 through December 2.

Northwest Pennsylvania police agencies participating in the Click It or Ticket initiative include:

  • Erie County – City of Erie Police Department and Millcreek Township Police Department;
  • Mercer County – Hermitage Police Department; and
  • Venango County – Franklin Police Department, Oil City Police Department, and Sugarcreek Police Department.

The enforcement is coordinated through PennDOT’s Buckle Up PA program and involves conducting seat-belt enforcement on roadway which data shows have low seat-belt use and high unbelted-crash rates. The goal of the mobilization is to encourage day and nighttime seat belt use through enforcement and public awareness activities.

In 2017, people not wearing a seat belt accounted for only 6.7 percent of all those involved in a crash in Pennsylvania, but 50.3 percent of the fatalities from all crashes.

According to PennDOT data, seat belts would have saved the lives of 350 people involved in crashes in 2017 and prevented 732 serious injuries.

The combination of lap/shoulder seat belts, when used, reduces the risk of fatal injuries to front seat passenger car occupants by 45 percent, and light truck occupants by 60 percent.

Below is a chart of the total number of people involved in crashes in Pennsylvania in 2017 based on seat belt usage.


  Belt in Use Belt Not in Use Belt Use Unknown
Total People in Crashes 222,408 (80.2%) 18,507 (6.7%) 36,400 (13.1%)
Fatalities 268 (35.7%) 378 (50.3%) 105 (14%)

For more information on seat belt safety, visit www.penndot.gov/safety. Click on the traffic safety and driver topics tab.

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Burning Ordinance Reminder

Just a reminder that this is November. Burning is only permitted on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays within the villages of Reno, Rocky Grove and Sugarcreek from 9:00 am til 9:00 pm.

Burning each day is ONLY permitted during the months of April, May, September and October.

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Motor Vehicle Accident

Sugarcreek Borough Police was dispatched to a single motor vehicle accident on State Route 427 on October 28, 2018 at 1:55 pm.

Investigation reveals that a Nissan Altima, operated by Rachel Gurnee, 19 of Franklin, was traveling south on State Route 427 in the area of Keely Road. Vehicle failed to negotiate a right curve in the roadway. The vehicle crossed over the north bound lane of travel, struck a ditch and continued up a slight embankment and struck a tree, coming to a final rest in the wooded area.

Gurnee was transported from the scene by Community Ambulance Service with unknown injuries.

Also assisting at the scene was Rocky Grove and Reno Volunteer Fire Departments and Venango Towing.

Gurnee was cited for driving to fast for conditions following the investigation.

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Sugarcreek Borough Police filed charges of Transmission of Sexually Explicit Images by a Minor and Harassment by Communications against a fifteen year old juvenile through the Venango County District Attorney’s office on October 29, 2018.

Charges stem from an incident that occurred on October 24, 2018 in where said juvenile is reported to have sent explicit photos of a minor without that minors consent as a threat.

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