Woman Shot In Pottstown; Police Investigating

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  With the warm weather comes increased crime in this neighborhood.  I think it’s time for a plan instead of a band-aid.

POTTSTOWN — A young woman was shot Sunday afternoon, causing Buttonwood Alley between Washington and Warren streets to be closed for several hours due to the police investigation.

Pottstown Police and Goodwill Ambulance responded at around 5:15 p.m. to the home fronting the 500 block of East High Street.

It’s unclear who or where the alleged shooter is.

Patrol officers were unable to comment on the case and deferred questions to Pottstown Police detectives. They did not return calls as of press time.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140413/woman-shot-in-pottstown-police-investigating

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Montco Commissioners Sponsor Paper Shredding Event In Collegeville

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Norristown, PA – The Montgomery County Commissioners and the Waste System
Authority of Eastern Montgomery County in conjunction with Shred One Security Corp. are
sponsoring a community paper shredding event on Saturday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to noon at
Perkiomen Valley Middle School East, 100 Kagey Road (entrance on Campus Drive) in Collegeville.

Future shredding events are scheduled for Saturday, June 21 at Copper Beach Elementary School in
Glenside, and on Saturday, October 18 at Lower Merion High School in Ardmore.

Montgomery County residents who have paper and documents that should be shredded are
encouraged to take advantage of this free event. No businesses are permitted. Residents are urged to
make sure that the materials they present for shredding do not include plastic, cardboard, or metal.
However, there is no need to remove staples, paper clips, hanging folders, etc.

“Shredding of documents has become important in our lives today for several reasons, not the least of
which is the threat of identity theft,” said Josh Shapiro, chairman of the Montgomery County
Commissioners. “We believe this service is useful, necessary, and will be appreciated by our residents,
and we are very grateful to Shred One and the Waste Authority for their assistance.”

Shred One regularly participates in community shredding events. The company’s mobile trucks
perform all of the paper shredding as you watch. All shredded paper is recycled by Shred One and the
company is currently recycling paper at a rate that saves over 70,000 trees annually.

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Montco Official Says Keim Street Bridge Project Moving Forward

Location of Lower Pottsgrove Township in Montg...

Location of Lower Pottsgrove Township in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

LOWER POTTSGROVE TOWNSHIP, PA — Not that she needed a reminder that all politics are local, but Montgomery County Commissioner Leslie Richards still remembers one of the first calls she got on the historic night she and Commissioners Chairman Josh Shapiro made history by being the first Democrats to take the majority in 100 years.

“I’ll never forget one of the first calls I got on election night,” she said March 24 as she, Shapiro and Commissioner Bruce Castor conducted the last of their roundtable meetings around the county, this one at the Lower Pottsgrove Township Building.

“I said ‘hello’ and the voice on the other end said ‘so when is the new Keim Street Bridge going to be finished?’”

The answer, she gave Monday, is that the project is “moving forward.”

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140331/montco-official-says-keim-street-bridge-project-moving-forward

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Cost Overruns, New Roof Costs, Plague Pottstown Elementary Projects

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — A $1.2 million price tag seems to be a little too high for school officials to bear and the school board is being asked Monday to reject the bid to replace the roof at Rupert Elementary School along with some masonry work.

The concern about costs comes as the board is poised to approved more than $225,000 in unbudgeted expense for the construction work at Lincoln, Franklin and Rupert elementary schools.

Instead of accepting the $1.2 million roof bid, the administration is urging that other ways of getting the work done be pursued.

“It’s not that we’re not going to do it,” said Business Manager Linda Adams, “it’s just that we think that price is too high.”

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140321/cost-overruns-new-roof-costs-plague-pottstown-elementary-projects

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Pottstown Area Seniors Center Gets New Director

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — The changes underway at the Pottstown Area Seniors’ Center now also include a change in leadership.

After 19 years with the center, Executive Director Brad Fuller is joining the legions of the retired and is currently training his replacement — Brian Parkes of Gilbertsville.

Parkes, 43, was most recently self-employed for nine years with Krisp Communications, a firm which worked exclusively with non-profit organizations and specializing in communications, grant-writing and fundraising.

Among his clients were six senior centers in Chester County and one in Montgomery County.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140302/pottstown-area-seniors-center-gets-new-director

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Layoffs At Aetna

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An undisclosed number of Aetna Inc. employees, including case managers, received layoff notices Wednesday at the health insurer’s Blue Bell office. One employee said that seven out of 18 supervisors lost their jobs, and each supervisor oversaw a staff of 15 to 20.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140227_Layoffs_at_Aetna.html#CJofKpH9CJpMxLSP.99

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Failed Movie Studio In Montco Cost Taxpayers Millions

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

NORRISTOWN, PA — The project to transform an old Norristown shopping center into a movie studio was supposed to bring the glitz and fortune of Hollywood to the sagging seat of Montgomery County.

Build it and filmmakers will come. Build it and jobs will come and lift Norristown to prosperity.

That dream fizzled like a box-office bomb last May, when the project’s investor filed for foreclosure against the developer.

The forlorn shopping center, Logan Square, sits half-empty, its fate likely to be announced in the coming weeks. The county is grappling with how to recoup the $25 million it sank into the project — including $10 million in federal funds it must repay — and its lawyers are preparing a lawsuit against the developer. And prosecutors are scrutinizing the deal to see if more than bad luck and poor judgment were to blame.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140218/failed-movie-studio-in-montco-cost-taxpayers-millions

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Bridgeport Addresses Issue Of ‘Amateur Landlords’

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

BRIDGEPORT, PA — Over the past year, many residents and landlords have complained at borough council meetings about overcrowding of and conditions at rental properties.

In response to these complaints, borough council has provided funds in the 2014 budget for a program to help resolve the issue of amateur landlords.

At its Feb. 11 meeting, council discussed hiring a third-party inspector to handle rental properties in the borough.

Read more: http://www.timesherald.com/general-news/20140214/bridgeport-addresses-issue-of-amateur-landlords

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Senior Housing Plan Presented In Norristown For Vacant Montgomery Hospital Building

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

NORRISTOWN, PA — The consensus of public opinion Tuesday night about a proposal to build 100 independent-living apartments for seniors and a senior support building at the former Montgomery Hospital site on Powell Street was largely positive.

More than 25 Norristown residents heard the first public presentation of the plans by the Elon Group of Fort Washington at the Montgomery County Human Services Center from Francis Vargas, vice president of the Elon Group, and several executives from Einstein Healthcare Network (EHN), which owns the 365,000-square-foot, seven-story building and 3.7-acre parcel.

“The proposal is not much different from last year as far as the senior housing,” said Norristown Councilwoman Linda Christian. “Last year the proposal was for the overall, same amount of units that was denied by the funders.”

Read more: http://www.timesherald.com/general-news/20140213/senior-housing-plan-presented-in-norristown-for-vacant-montgomery-hospital-building

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Vision For Future Of Pottstown Ready For Public Feedback

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — It has been nearly three decades since Pottstown had a new comprehensive plan, but there is a draft on the drawing board right now that is ready for public review.

Crafted with the help of the Montgomery County Planning Commission, the current draft plan provides an overall vision for the community and suggests for how to implement that vision.

The draft calls for taking advantage of what Pottstown has — historic architecture and resources to attract heritage tourism; expanding the airport and railroad access; transitioning apartment units back to single-family ownership and appropriate development of multi-unit apartments.

Pottstown’s first Comprehensive Plan was adopted in 1960.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140208/vision-for-future-of-pottstown-ready-for-public-feedback

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Business Booming At Montgomery County Hotels Due To Power Outages

Location of Upper Merion Township in Montgomer...

Location of Upper Merion Township in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

UPPER MERION TOWNSHIP, PA — If area residents who were without power may have felt like the losers in Wednesday’s icy winter weather games, the winners were the area’s hotels, where “no vacancy” seemed to be a recurring theme.

Then again, depending on where they chose to spend Wednesday night, some of those displaced “losers” may have felt as if their luck was about to change for the better.

“Where else would you want to be but at a casino on a night like tonight, right?” said Michael Bowman, CEO and president of Valley Forge Casino Resort.

With every one of the resort’s 485 rooms due to be snapped up within the hour, Bowman said the lobby was buzzing with folks who had closed up their dark and unheated homes in search of plush lodgings on First Avenue in King of Prussia.

Read more:  http://www.timesherald.com/business/20140205/business-booming-at-montgomery-county-hotels-due-to-power-outages

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PECO: Montgomery County Ice Storm Second Worst For Power Outages Since Hurricane Sandy

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

NORRISTOWN, PA — A PECO spokesperson said they are looking into a multiple day restoration process for 67 percent of customers without power in Montgomery County.

At 1 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon, 181,902 of the 302,600 PECO customers in Montgomery County are without power—not all Montgomery County residents are PECO customers— and crews are in the area trying to turn the lights back on.

“We’re looking at the second worst storm for power outages since Hurricane Sandy,” PECO Spokesperson Cathy Engel Mendez said on Wednesday.

Mendez said the most common cause of the outages have to do with tree limbs coming down on power lines.

Read more: http://www.timesherald.com/general-news/20140205/peco-montgomery-county-ice-storm-second-worst-for-power-outages-since-hurricane-sandy

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POTTSTOWN POLICE: Two Officers Assaulted While Aiding Shooting Victim

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

(Updated 2:45 p.m.) POTTSTOWN, PA — Two borough police officers were attacked and injured as they attempted to aid a shooting victim outside the Montgomery Elks Lodge on Walnut Street early Sunday morning, police said.

Both officers were taken to an area hospital and “treated for their injuries,” according to a release from the Pottstown Police.

Pottstown Police Captain Robert Thomas said the officers, who were not identified, will both be “OK” after the incident which began around 2:45 a.m.

The officers, who were nearby, responded to the Elks Club on the 600 block of Walnut Street for the report of a shooting, according to a Pottstown Police release.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140202/pottstown-police-two-officers-assaulted-while-aiding-shooting-victim

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Montgomery County Community College Celebrates 50th Anniversary

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As 2014 begins to unfold, Montgomery County Community College’s will start to celebrate its 50th year of thinking big and providing high-quality, accessible higher education for the citizens of Montgomery County and beyond.

“Fifty years ago, Montgomery County Community College was founded on the bold belief that education has the power to transform lives and communities. The College’s early visionaries laid the framework for what we are today—a community hub for education, innovation, workforce training and cultural activity,” says MCCC President Dr. Karen A. Stout. “We are proud to celebrate our 50th anniversary. This is a special time to reflect upon our accomplishments, thank the people who made those achievements possible and look forward to thinking bigger for the next 50 years.”

More than 50 years ago in 1963, Pennsylvania passed the Community College Act, which provides the legal framework for the establishment of community colleges in the Commonwealth. Even before the ink was dry on the new legislation, a Montgomery County steering committee investigated and confirmed the need for a community college in the County. The College was officially established on Dec. 8, 1964 and opened its doors in October 1966 in the former Conshohocken High School Building at Fayette and 7th streets in Conshohocken. In 1972, it moved to its current location at 340 DeKalb Pike, Blue Bell, and in 1996, the West Campus in Pottstown opened. In the fall 2013, the College opened its new state-of-the-art Culinary Arts Institute, 1400 Forty Foot Rd., Lansdale. For the future, the College is currently in the planning stages of transforming its existing Physical Education building into a Health Sciences Center.

Read more: http://mc3bignews.wordpress.com/2014/01/21/montgomery-county-community-college-celebrates-50th-anniversary/

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Montgomery County Commissioners Schedule 2nd Annual “Conversations” Caravan

Norristown, PA – The Montgomery County Commissioners have scheduled a series of six “Conversations with Your Commissioners” throughout Montgomery County during February.

Last year the inaugural series of “Conversations” was extremely well-attended and gave residents of the county the opportunity to discuss a wide range of subjects with the commissioners.

The 2014 series of conversations will be held in Lower Pottsgrove, Abington, Ambler, Bryn Mawr, East Greenville and Norristown.

“Last year’s “Conversations” were very successful and gave the commissioners a real sense of what issues were on people’s minds,” said Commissioner Chair Josh Shapiro.  “These sessions are just another way we use to keep residents informed about what we are doing.  We live stream our meetings on line and use social media a great deal to inform everyone about what is going on in the county, but the “Conversations” provide a true, personal level of contact the others do not.”

Shapiro said the commissioners plan to use the sessions to review what the county has done during the first two years of the administration and outline what plans are in store for the final two years.

The schedule is:

Thursday, February 6 at 7 p.m.

Lower Pottsgrove Township Building

3199 Buchert Road

Pottstown, PA

Saturday, February 8 at 10 a.m.

Abington Township Building

1176 Old York Road

Abington, PA

Monday, February 10 at 7 p.m.

Ambler Borough Hall

122 East Butler Avenue

Ambler, PA

Saturday, February 15 at 10 a.m.

Ludington Library

5 South Bryn Mawr Avenue

Bryn Mawr, PA

Monday, February 24 at 7 p.m.

The Grand Theater

252 Main Street

East Greenville, PA

Thursday, February 27 at 7 p.m.

Norristown Municipal Building

235 East Airy Street

Norristown, PA

For more information please call the Commissioners’ office at 610-278-3062.

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UPDATED: PECO Determines Cause Of Power Loss In Pottstown

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — Several hours after a temporary power outage plunged more than 2,000 people around the borough into darkness on Tuesday, PECO crews determined the cause of the problem.

The outage occurred around 10:40 a.m. and impacted 2,250 customers. Power to all but five customers was restored around 11 a.m.

Greg Smore, a PECO spokesperson, said an issue with a piece of equipment and a downed wire cause the outage, which lasted a little under an hour.

“It was not a malfunction and it was not weather related,” Smore said.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140114/updated-peco-determines-cause-of-power-loss-in-pottstown

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Pottstown Poised To Fill Vacant Authority, Commission Posts

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — Although borough council wasted little time in filling the tax collector vacancy Wednesday night, there are still a few vacant positions up for grabs.

As part of the annual process of filling posts on boards and commissions, council will vote Monday on filling nine open spots, with a 10th vacancy being filled in February.

One seat on the Pottstown Borough Authority is open and two people have applied to fill it. It is currently filled by plumber Aram Ecker, who is seeking a second five-year term. However, newly elected Borough Councilwoman Sheryl Miller has also asked to be appointed.

With Miller’s defeat of Jeff Chomnuk for the third ward seat on council, the authority board currently has no member of borough council, a role Chomnuk had filled.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140110/pottstown-poised-to-fill-vacant-authority-commission-posts

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Second Suspect Arrested In Pottstown Murder

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — The second suspect in the Dec. 27 murder of a Pottstown man was arrested in Philadelphia after eluding police for almost two weeks.

Daquan Hamilton, 20, of Philadelphia, was arrested Wednesday in a house in the 5000 block of North 21st Street in Philadelphia, according to a press release from Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman.

Hamilton was charged with first-, second-, and third-degree murder in the death of 22-year-old George Hashimbey on Dec. 27, 2013. Khaleef Jones, 21, of Philadelphia was charged with first and second-degree murder in connection with the murder.

Hamilton and Jones allegedly forced their way into a fifth-floor apartment at King Street Commons Apartments, then the two suspects shot two of the three men in the apartment, according to the press release.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140108/second-suspect-arrested-in-pottstown-murder

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Tri-County High School Art Exhibit At MCCC West Campus In Pottstown

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

High school students from Montgomery, Chester and Berks counties will showcase their artwork at Montgomery County Community College’s first Tri-County High School Art Exhibition and Competition at its Fine Arts Gallery, North Hall, 16 High Street, Pottstown.

The exhibition opens Monday, Jan. 13, and will continue through Friday, Feb. 21. The artists’ reception will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 29, from 5-7 p.m. with the awards presentation at 6 p.m. Both the exhibit and the reception are free and open to the community.

Students from approximately 20 public, parochial and private schools were invited to participate in the exhibition. The artwork features a variety of subjects and styles in an array of media. College art faculty members will be judging the artwork.

More details: http://calendar.mc3.edu/EventList.aspx?view=EventDetails&eventidn=1772&information_id=2563&type=&syndicate=syndicate

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Investigation Continuing Into Homicide At Pottstown Apartment

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — One man was killed and another man injured early Friday in a middle of the night shooting in the King Street Commons apartments at King and Charlotte streets.

The victim was identified Friday as George Hashimbey, 22, who was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Montgomery County Coroner Dr. Walter Hofman.

Court records obtained by The Mercury show Hashimbey with addresses in Pottstown and in Philadelphia.

Hofman said Hashimbey died of a gunshot wound to the stomach and chest area. Hofman ruled the death a homicide after the autopsy was completed Friday.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20131227/updated-pottstown-shooting-victim-identified