Pottstown School Board Approves Keystone Tax Break For New Business

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  See what happens when we are all on the same page!  This sends a positive signal to the investment community that Pottstown is “OPEN FOR BUSINESS”.   This needs to happen more often.  Two Thumbs Up to all involved!

POTTSTOWN — With a 7-2 vote Monday night, the Pottstown School Board endorsed a property tax break for a business that wants to re-locate to the former 84 Lumber truss plant on Keystone Boulevard.

School board members Polly Weand and Andrew Kefer cast the only votes against endorsing the Keystone Opportunity Zone tax exemption for Conshohocken-based Heritage Coach Co., which sells hearses and limousines.

The vote comes just three days after state Rep. Mark Painter, D-146th Dist., announced his support for the tax break.

Under the terms of the deal negotiated by Schools Superintendent Jeff Sparagana and Borough Manager Mark Flanders, Heritage would pay no property taxes in the first three years of the 10-year deal.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130326/NEWS01/130329480/pottstown-school-board-approves-tax-break-for-new-business

Pottstown Council OKs Business Tax Break With 4-3 Vote

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — With a 4-3 vote, borough council Monday night approved a tax-abatement incentive for a hearse and limousine business seeking to take over the vacant former 84 Lumber building at 451 Keystone Blvd.

Councilmen Dan Weand, Travis Gery and Joe Kirkland voted against extending the Keystone Opportunity Zone property tax break, while it was supported by Council President Stephen Toroney, vice president Jeff Chomnuk and council members Mark Gibson and Carol Kulp.

The matter now moves to the school board, which oversees a much larger slice of the borough’s tax burden and stands to sacrifice substantially more money under the proposed agreement.  It is expected to vote on the matter at its March 25 meeting.

The Montgomery County Commissioners, who must also approve the deal, have indicated they will approve it as long as the borough and the school district do, according to Steve Bamford, Pottstown’s chief economic development officer and an advocate for the deal council approved.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130311/NEWS01/130319844/pottstown-council-oks-business-tax-break-with-4-3-vote#full_story

Objection To Pottstown Elementary Plan Focuses On High Street Crossing

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — Few objections were raised Thursday night when the official redistricting plan for elementary school attendance was unveiled, but the one that was focused on the safety of students crossing High Street.

“I think rather than throwing our children under the bus, we should put them on a bus and come up with a better transportation plan,” said North Hills Boulevard resident Madison Morton.

The only speaker on the subject of redistricting at Thursday night’s public meeting, Morton has a child that currently attends Edgewood Elementary and he is unhappy about the possibility that his daughter’s trip to Rupert Elementary may involve crossing High Street.

Currently, High Street is considered by PennDOT to be a hazardous road similar to Route 100 and, as a result, the district must bus students across it.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130223/NEWS01/130229714/objection-to-pottstown-elementary-plan-focuses-on-high-street-crossing#full_story

Pottstown Releases New Elementary Attendance Zone Maps, Meeting Tonight At 7:30

POTTSTOWN — In advance of tonight’s school board meeting, at which the proposed four new elementary school attendance zones will be discussed, Superintendent Jeff Sparagana has agreed to The Mercury’s request to make them public for inspection.

The meeting will be held in the Pottstown High School cafeteria and begins at 7:30 p.m.

Sparagana said the information was released to give parents and residents an opportunity to look at and digest some of the basic information prior to tonight’s presentation.

Attached to this article, readers should find a map of the current five-school configuration, a map showing the borders of the four new attendance areas, as well as close-up maps of all four attendance areas.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130221/NEWS01/130229834/pottstown-releases-new-elementary-attendance-zone-maps-meeting-is-tonight-at-7-30-#full_story

Pottstown Chooses Sparagana As New Schools Chief

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — The school district’s acting superintendent became its official superintendent Thursday night when the school board unanimously approved a three-year contract for Jeff Sparagana worth more than $173,000 a year.

The vote came almost three months to the day after Reed Lindley abruptly resigned as Pottstown Superintendent.

In a vote that appeared nowhere on the night’s school board agenda, Sparagana was provided with a contract that ends on June 30, 2016.

His term begins immediately.   Sparagana’s “aggregate annual salary” will be $173,624, according to the terms of the contract, explained after the vote by School District Solicitor Stephen Kalis.

Pottstown Council, School Board Want To Work Closer

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Two Roy’s Rants thumbs up to Acting Superintendent Jeff Sparagana for being proactive!

POTTSTOWN — When it comes to getting along, it could be said that the borough and school district governments in Pottstown sometimes get along like siblings on a long car trip.

Acting Schools Superintendent Jeff Sparagana is among the first to admit that and did so Wednesday when he told borough council that “it is important to acknowledge and recognize there have been breakdowns in the relationship between the borough and the school district in the past.”

But he was also the first to offer an olive branch in pursuit of a new era of cooperation.

Appearing before council during the Wednesday work session, Sparagana prefaced a presentation of the district’s land development plans for Rupert, Franklin and Lincoln elementary schools with a statement — and an apology.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20121209/NEWS01/121209423/pottstown-council-school-board-want-to-work-closer#full_story

Pottstown School Board Seeks Input On Stadium Lighting

POTTSTOWN — The school board has deciding against using as much as $225,000 in money it had not expected to receive from the state to replace the football stadium’s aging light poles.

Instead, the board agreed to reach out to the community to solicit ideas for how to raise the money.

“I’ve had a lot of feedback from the community about this,” said board member Amy Francis.  “And we’re really between a rock and a hard place.”

 “I think we need to find a way to make it happen, but we need to find a more creative way,” she said.

Dr. Lindley Tapped For Top Job At PSD

In a surprise move (wink), the Pottstown School Board gave Assistant Superintendent Reed Lindley a promotion to Superintendent of Schools last night.

Have to say I saw this coming, based on different thing I picked up on, so there was no point in me attending last night’s meeting.

We certainly wish Dr. Lindley well in his new position and hope that he and the BOE can move PSD forward during these turbulent economic times.  There is much work to do and much at stake.

Good luck Dr. Lindley!