POW/MIA Flags To Be Hung In Downtown Pottstown

Art fusionIn preparation for ArtFusion 19464’s fall educational exhibit When We Were Soldiers, downtown Pottstown will soon be flying POW/MIA flags.  The flags will be hung the week of July 4th and be on display through Veterans Day.

This display was made possible through the support of the greater Pottstown community and beyond. Representative Mark Painter’s office donated 2 flags.  Generous donations were also made by the following individuals and organizations: David Garner , Esq., Pottstown Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, Positively Pottstown, Federation of Concerned Organizations, POW/MIA Forget Me Nots, American Legion Post 244 and Jack and Cathy Paretti, Theresa Orlosky, Sharon Shulby.  Billy Worrell, member of American Legion Post 244 and a Vietnam Veteran, was very instrumental in getting the donations and arranging the purchase of the flags.

When We Were Soldiers will focus on the personal recollections of veterans of the Vietnam War.  The show will open September 20 with a Welcome Home reception and run through Veterans Day.  As part of the reception, local motorcycle clubs will be participating in a welcome home ride.  The reception will run from 5-8pm. Light refreshments will be served.  While this reception is free, ArtFusion will be collecting donations for a free arts program for veterans as well as to fund maintenance for the Pottstown Vietnam Memorial.

The Pottstown Keystone Chapter 565 of Vietnam Veterans meets the first Tuesday of every month at 7PM at the VFW located on High Street in Pottstown.  Anyone is invited to attend a meeting.

ArtFusion 19464 is a 501(c)3 non-profit community art center located at 254 E. High St. in downtown Pottstown.  The school offers day, evening and weekend classes to all ages.  The goal of these classes is to help students develop their creative skills through self-expression and independence.  ArtFusion’s gallery hosts rotating shows featuring local artists.  The gallery also sells handcrafted, one-of-a-kind gift items.  The gallery is open Tuesday through Friday from 10am-5pm and Saturday 10am-3pm.  The gallery is closed Sunday and Monday.

Attached:  POWMIA flags.jpg: presentation of flags at Borough Hall; Frank Strunk, President of Pottstown Keystone Chapter 565 of Vietnam Veterans of America; Billy Worrell, of American Legion Post 244; and Mark Flanders, Pottstown Borough Manager.

Pottstown, Phoenixville Split By Court-Approved Re-Districting Plan

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

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

Both Pottstown and Phoenixville will be split into two different legislative districts under the legislative re-districting approved Wednesday by the state Supreme Court.

The new districts will take effect in the 2014 election cycle and shift legislative lines for the state House and Senate seats throughout Southeast Pennsylvania and may change who is representing you in Harrisburg.

In Pottstown, the plan unanimously approved by the court, puts the first, second and part of the seventh wards of Pottstown into the 26th District, currently represented by longtime Chester County Republican Tim Hennessey.

The third, fourth, fifth, sixth and other half of the seventh wards will continue to be represented by the 146th District, a seat currently held by freshman Democrat Mark Painter according to the plan.

Read m0re:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130508/NEWS01/130509321/pottstown-phoenixville-split-by-court-approved-redistricting-plan#full_story

Blighted Pottstown House Owned By State Rep.’s Chief Of Staff

Editor’s note:  There are a couple of take away items here.  a.  The Pottstown Codes Department evidently can’t process an address change.  Does that require a $5,000.00 “donation”?  b.  The house is in poor condition and needs repairs.  c.  This illustrates the pitfalls of being an “investor” in Pottstown.  Most likely that amount of damage didn’t happen overnight, from the sounds of the report.  How often are problem properties being checked on by an owner or property manager?  It sounds like the house should be demolished except the owner owes money to the bank.  It will be a LONG wait until conditions improve enough in that neighborhood to make fixing up this property economically viable.  So just add another vacant property to Pottstown’s housing stock.

POTTSTOWN — The district chief of staff for state Rep. Mark Painter, D-146th Dist., is the owner of a Walnut Street home that the borough has recently identified as “blighted.”

The designation was advertised in the legal notices of Wednesday’s edition of The Mercury.

Michael A. Lavanga, who heads up Painter’s district office in Sanatoga and has appeared on his behalf at local government meetings, expressed surprise Wednesday when contacted by a reporter about the advertisement.

According to the legal notice, Lavanga has 30 days to make repairs to the property including repairing or replacing rain gutters, loose paint, windows and the front steps to 409 Walnut St.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130412/NEWS04/130419776/blighted-pottstown-house-owned-by-state-rep-s-chief-of-staff#full_story

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

TriCounty Community Network To Hold Meeting On Preventing & Preparing For School Emergencies

The TriCounty Community Network (TCN) Build Up Youth Committee will be hosting a meeting on “School Emergencies: Prevention, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery”.  In the wake of recent tragedies, the speaker, Matthew Moyer, principal at Rupert Elementary School will talk about how the TriCounty community can help our schools protect our children.

State Rep. Mark Painter will also be at the event and will speak to the attendees.

Tuesday, February 19, 8am – 10am

Montgomery County Community College, West Campus

Community Room, 101 College Drive, Pottstown

  Breakfast Sponsor: Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania

Click here to register or call TCN at 610-705-3301 ext. 2.

TCN is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, membership-based organization that partners with nonprofits, businesses and community members to improve health, social and environmental conditions.  Serving Western Montgomery, Northern Chester and Eastern Berks counties in Pennsylvania, TCN offers six key programs: Build Up Youth, CARE (caregivers support), Environmental Awareness, Homeless Services, SAFE (Supporting Abuse Free Environments), and Workforce Development.  For more information on TCN, visit www.tcnetwork.org.  

Annual MLK Service Draws Big Crowd In Pottstown

Martin Luther King leaning on a lectern. Deuts...

Martin Luther King leaning on a lectern. Deutsch: 1964: Martin Luther King Português: Martin Luther King (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — Each year, the interfaith prayer service honoring Martin Luther King Jr. celebrated by the borough’s various religious communities strikes a special chord with the Rev. Vernon Ross Jr.

“This is something I look forward to,” Ross said. “It’s really a part of me.”

Ross, the pastor of Bethel AME Church, grew up in Mississippi and, as a football player in high school, was president of his chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

In 1977, when Ross and other members of the organization tried to go to church to share their faith with their Christian coach — a white man — the athletes were told that only white players were allowed inside.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130121/NEWS01/130129952/annual-mlk-service-draws-big-crowd-in-pottstown#full_story