Poor Economy Boosts Mass Transit Ridership In Butler County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Butler County

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When John Paul of the Butler Transit Authority saw the numbers of riders increasing in big numbers late last year, he thought, “Wow, that was a good month.”

When it happened again the next month, he thought it was a fluke.

Now that it has happened for six consecutive months, he’s calling it a trend.

In fact, overall use of public transit in Butler County is skyrocketing, a fact that local experts link to dual factors of a battered economy and improvements in the transit systems.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/12005/1201300-54-0.stm#ixzz1idLTnao0

This Year, Home Design Is All About You

Wondering what the hot home design trends will be for 2012?  The answer, at least in some instances, is whatever you want it to be.
   
“2012 is going to be an eclectic mix.  It’s not going to be something that’s very definable,” said interior designer Valerie Betz of Studio VB, located at 218 Verbeke Street in Harrisburg. “It’s not going to be this style or this country.  It’s more about taking a deviation and being more eclectic.” 

 

 

 

 

Read more: http://blog.pennlive.com/life/2012/01/this_year_home_design_is_all_a.html

Giant Food Stores To Acquire 16 Genuardi’s Family Markets In Philadelphia Area

English: Logo of Giant Food Stores LLC. also k...

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Giant Food Stores, LLC, is making a competitive push into the suburban Philadelphia market.

The Carlisle-based chain announced Thursday it has entered into an agreement to acquire 16 Genuardi’s Family Markets in the Philadelphia area for $106 million.

The transaction is expected to close over the next six months at which point the ownership will be transferred from Safeway Inc. and the stores converted into Giant Food Stores.

Read more: http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2012/01/giant_food_stores_to_acquire_1.html

RELATED STORY

Royersford, Norristown and Exton Genuardi’s closing!

http://www.timesherald.com/article/20120105/NEWS01/120109752

New Harrisburg Area Record Label Rock Paper Record’s Taking Off

New central Pennsylvania record label Rock Paper Records will host its first label showcase Tuesday night at Ceoltas in Harrisburg. RPR’s first signed band, The Teeth, will perform as well as Kills and Thrills and Dead Lizard.   

Rock Paper Records is owned and run by Jay Tran, Logan Betz and Sean Kunkle, who started the project out of a mutual love of music.
    
“The three of us have always filled our lives with music, whether playing, working or just being a fan of it,” Tran said. “I, along with my partners, believe in taking care of the artist, shaping and teaching them, along with giving back to the place where you conduct your business.

Read more: http://blog.pennlive.com/go/2012/01/record_label_rock_paper_record.html

York-Based Bon-Ton Store’s Bonds Being Shunned By Investors

Investors are shunning Bon-Ton Stores Inc.‘s bonds – a bad sign for the York-based department store chain with seven stores in the Lehigh Valley.

In contrast, other retailers have recently gained from rising consumer confidence in the U.S.

Bon-Ton’s $480 million of 10.25 percent notes due in March 2014 lost 2.8 percent last month, the worst performance of any bonds in the Bank of America Merrill Lynch U.S. High Yield Super Retail Index, which climbed 1.7 percent overall. Moody’s Investors Service put its Caa1 rating for the securities on “negative outlook” on Dec. 1, citing the company’s “persistent underperformance.”

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/business/mc-allentown-bontton-20120103,0,3027398.story

Allentown Sees 42 Firefighter Retirements

English: City of Allentown from east side

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Allentown officials knew a staggering number of city firefighters would retire in 2011, it was just a matter of how many.

Fire Chief Robert Scheirer predicted months ago that some 50 firefighters would retire before the union’s contract that contained a generous pension clause was set to expire Dec. 31, echoing a similar mass exodus six years ago in the police department.

Now that the paperwork has settled, city officials say 42 firefighters left in 2011 — nearly one-third of the department usually staffed with about 140 firefighters. That’s by far the most firefighter retirees in one year, second only to the departure of 80 police officers six years ago.

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/news/local/mc-allentown-pa-firefighters-retire-20120104,0,7856335.story