Ron Downie Reflects On 20 Years In Pottstown Public Service

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

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

Editor’s note:  Very nice article by Evan Brandt on Ron Downie’s public service to Pottstown.

POTTSTOWN — When Ron Downie first came to the Pottstown area as an infant, his family for a time got water from a hand-pumped well and used an outhouse at a home outside Harmonyville.

Now, he composes poetry on a hand-held electronic device thinner than most books of poetry and shares his words with the mere touch of a button.

All of which is to say he has seen times change.  And he has changed with them.

One of four children of Scottish immigrants, Downie has alternately been a landscaper, a Firestone plant worker, a bartender, a ski-slope operator, a school board member, the president of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area and the AMBUCS and the Building and Industries Exchange.

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Progress Seen In Last-Minute ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Talks

English: President Barack Obama addresses a jo...

English: President Barack Obama addresses a joint session of the United States Congress in the chamber of the House of Representatives at the United States Capitol on 24 February 2009. Español: Presidente Barack Obama dando un discurose por una sesión conjunta del Congreso de los Estados Unidos en la cámara de la Cámara de Representantes en el Capitolio de los Estados Unidos, 24 de febrero de 2009. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WASHINGTON — Working against a midnight deadline, negotiators for the White House and congressional Republicans in Congress narrowed their differences today on legislation to avert across-the-board tax increases.

Congressional officials familiar with talks between Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said one major remaining sticking point was whether to postpone spending cuts that are scheduled to begin on Jan 1.

Republicans want to replace across-the-board reductions with targeted cuts elsewhere in the budget, and the White House and Democrats were resisting.

At the same time, Democrats said the two sides were closing in on an agreement over taxes.  They said the White House had proposed blocking an increase for most Americans, while letting rates rise for individuals with incomes of $400,000 a year and $450,000 for couples, a concession from President Barack Obama’s campaign call to set the levels at $200,000 and $250,000.

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Philadelphia Eagles Fire Andy Reid

Andy Reid, Philadelphia Eagles' coach, after t...

Andy Reid, Philadelphia Eagles’ coach, after the Eagles’ training camp in Lehigh, Pennsylvania. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

PHILADELPHIA — Andy Reid‘s worst coaching season with the Philadelphia Eagles ended today after 14 years when he was fired by owner Jeffrey Lurie, who said it was time “to move in a new direction.”

The dismissal came one day after Reid and the Eagles were humiliated 42-7 by the New York Giants and ended their season at 4-12.

“Andy leaves us with a winning tradition that we can build upon.  And we are very excited about the future,” Lurie said in a statement released by the team.

The team pushed back a scheduled noon EST news conference to 1 p.m.

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Nolde Forest Thins Ranks To Make Way For Growth

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Boulevard Trail is Carl Knutsen’s favorite path to walk at Nolde Forest State Park in Cumru Township.  The steep hike gives him the best workout.

But when Knutsen arrived at the trail a few weeks ago, he was shocked to find a muddy path covered with downed trees due to a logging project.

“Boy, it was quite a sight,” Knutsen, 68, a Cumru resident, said recently. “I just hope it’s being done for the right reasons.”

Linda Ingram, manager of Nolde’s Environmental Education Center, said other visitors to the park along Route 625 have had similar reactions after seeing the messy trail.  But when Ingram looks at the path, she sees progress.

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