Terry Oparka bio image

Terry Oparka


Staff Writer Terry Oparka covers Troy and the Troy School District for the Troy Times. Oparka has worked for C & G Newspapers since 2000 and attended Oakland University and Macomb Community College. Oparka has won an award from the Michigan Press Association and four awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, Detroit Chapter.

Published April 20, 2011

Bedbugs are resilient little varmints — parasites, really — and they can hitch rides into homes in unlikely places: the seams of luggage, folded clothes, bedding and furniture.

The bugs have been found in five-star hotels and resorts all over the world, and their existence is not determined by the cleanliness of the conditions where they are found.

The good news is, the insects are not known to spread disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Published April 19, 2011

For some, serving as a volunteer on the Troy Fire Department is the culmination of a lifelong dream.

For others, it’s a family affair.

Jonathan Roberts, 19, grew up in a family of firefighters.

His mother, Susan, and father, David, both served as volunteers, and in fact, they met on the job.

His father now serves as assistant chief for the Fire Department.

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Published April 19, 2011

A judge will decide if a Troy couple is violating city zoning laws by hosting a canine club at their home once a month.

The city of Troy issued Karen and Joseph Lichty, organizers of the Troy All Dogs Playgroup, a municipal civil infraction for hosting the group at their home on Montclair.

At issue, say city officials, is parking on the residential street during the meetings and the fact that up to 40 dogs at a time could be on the residential site.

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Published April 19, 2011

More than 100 people attended a panel discussion presented by Troy Citizens United, a group that has opposed tax increases, at the Troy Community Center April 14.

Residents said they learned about the meeting online and from recorded phone messages.

TCU presented information that elicited cheers at times — and sparked discussion between attendees at other times.

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Published April 19, 2011

After an anonymous tip, police confiscated five 2-foot-high marijuana plants growing in a 17-year-old’s bedroom closet, which the teen’s parents said they knew nothing about.

Troy Police Lt. Bob Redmond said a heavy odor of marijuana hung in the air outside and throughout the condo in the 1000 block of Villa Park, near Square Lake and Rochester, when police arrived there at 2 p.m. April 18.

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Published April 19, 2011

The council pushed back the planned May 1 closure of the library in order to explore a way to fund it in the 2011-2012 fiscal year — but it remains unclear how they will do it.

At the April 18 meeting, the council, by consensus, directed Troy City Manager John Szerlag to delay closing the library until council can hammer out details of the 2011-2012 portion of the three-year budget approved last year. Those budget meetings will conclude May 9.

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Published April 13, 2011

Though a swimming pool and a ping-pong table raise a racket just steps away, chess players stay focused on the board during a recent practice.

They have to.

During tournaments, some players on the Troy All Star Chess Club, who are nationally ranked, must sit still for more than four hours. Given that the players’ ages range from 4 to 13, that’s no small feat.

They even play against adults — and win.

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Published April 6, 2011

A doctor who operated a clinic in Troy and previously in Warren faces federal fraud charges for allegedly writing fraudulent narcotics prescriptions and billing for bogus medical tests.

Dr. Baljinder Pannu was arraigned in U.S. District Court March 31 on charges of health care fraud that investigators say occurred at Pain Management Clinic, 333 Stephenson, and at a previous location at 27472 Schoenherr in Warren. Pannu reportedly purchased the office building in Troy in 2009 and relocated there in early 2010. It is not known if anyone else at the clinics was charged.

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Published April 5, 2011

The Troy Museum and Historic Village will stay open under a plan that allows a nonprofit group to operate the city-owned facility.

The council unanimously approved a letter of agreement to allow the Troy Historical Society to use, operate and manage the venue with the addendum that the council would accept a report of financials, rather than an audit, each year.

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Published March 30, 2011

TROY — You can buy Better Made snacks, Faygo and Vernors soft drinks, Germack peanuts and pistachios, American Coney Island kits, Sanders sweets, Pewabic Pottery pieces, and a local rocker’s beer all in one place — and make a difference in the lives of metro Detroiters.

The Detroit Shoppe, located at Somerset Collection North, opened for the first time last fall and closed in early January. It has reopened with new items and the same focus — to raise funds for local charities and awareness of Detroit’s cultural, sports and iconic gems.

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Published March 30, 2011

TROY — As city leaders grapple with how to deliver services with less and less, the council must make more tough decisions about what that will mean to residents and the heat on the street.

The International City/ County Management Association presented the findings of a commissioned study on city efficiencies in the Police Department at the Troy City Council’s March 21 special meeting.

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Published March 30, 2011

Online learning is emerging as a way to teach students in a way they will likely be forced to master after they leave their traditional high school classrooms.

Anne Mull, director of instruction and assessment for the Troy School District, said virtual course quantity and quality have increased greatly over the past several years.

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Published March 23, 2011

The Troy School District’s all-day kindergarten program will stay after the Board of Education heeded numerous parents’ wishes that the program not change in light of budget cuts the district is considering.

The district faces an $8 million cut in funding based on Gov. Rick Snyder’s proposed budget, Troy school officials say. The board will consider the budget proposals at its April 19 regular meeting and must adopt the 2011-2012 budget by July 1.

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Published March 23, 2011

Local business owners, restaurateurs and faith communities are banding together, so Troy youth can have a blast for less cash during spring break.

From April 4-9, as part of Spring Break Troy Style, Troy students in grades six-12 can climb a rock wall; bowl; swim; golf; play wallyball, volleyball, dodge ball or euchre; see a movie; or stay up all night playing laser tag close to home.

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Published March 16, 2011

TROY — Dr. Arthur Weaver estimates he’s helped more than 100,000 people kick the smoking habit since 1966.

“It’s one of the toughest addictions there is,” he said.

Weaver returns to Troy next month with his Breathe Free seminar. Weaver, 87, is an emeritus professor of surgery at Wayne State University. Now retired, he taught cancer surgery to medical students at WSU for 38 years.

He said the people who come to him these days for help quitting smoking are “hard-core” addicts.

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