Wilkes-Barre, Other Pennsylvania River Towns Hit Hard By Flood Insurance Rates

HARRISBURG, PA — Jeff King had put his house in Wilkes-Barre up for sale for $90,000 last year, put off by the city’s struggles with crime and the desire for a better school district for his four children, when he got a surprise: The prospective buyer discovered that her annual flood insurance premium would be $7,015, higher than 12 months of mortgage payments.

Even though President Barack Obama signed a law Friday to ease the sharpest premium increases for policyholders receiving subsidies from the National Flood Insurance Program, King is resigned to never selling the house, which is about a mile-and-a-half from the Susquehanna River. The writing, he said, is on the wall.

“Any educated buyer is going to stay clear from a home in the flood area,” King said.

Across Pennsylvania, with an estimated 86,000 miles of creeks, streams and rivers, the premium increases could deliver a gut punch to the state’s legion of old river cities and towns still struggling to recover from the loss of their industrial core.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/w-b-other-river-towns-hit-hard-by-rates-1.1655882

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Pittsburgh City Council Members Air Doubts About Land Bank Legislation

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A letter that four Pittsburgh City Council members sent to 30,000 Pittsburgh residents called a land bank proposal “predatory” and promoted a meeting set for Tuesday evening to discuss potential alternatives.

The letter, dated March 18, is signed by council members R. Daniel Lavelle of the Hill District, Darlene Harris of Spring Garden, Theresa Kail-Smith of Westwood and Ricky Burgess of North Point Breeze. It went to residents of their council districts.

A proposal from Councilwoman Deb Gross of Highland Park would establish a city land bank as a way to transfer vacant city-owned or tax delinquent properties to homebuyers and developers.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/5823332-74/council-bank-community#ixzz2wvfQp8P8
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‘Affordability Gap’ In Lancaster County Widens For Renters

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

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

The typical renter in Lancaster County is finding it harder to afford a basic apartment here, a new study shows.

The so-called “affordability gap” in Lancaster County has hit a record high, according to the latest report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

The gap is the difference between the average renter’s hourly wage and what he needs to earn to comfortably afford the basic apartment.

According to the coalition, the average renter here earns $11.78 an hour.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/business/local_business/affordability-gap-in-lancaster-county-widens-for-renters/article_01bfb1ee-b39c-11e3-aa3f-001a4bcf6878.html

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Malaysia Says Missing Plane Crashed In Indian Ocean

Malaysia Airlines airplanes at Kuala Lumpur In...

Malaysia Airlines airplanes at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, in front a Boeing 777-200 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which disappeared over two weeks ago en route to Beijing, crashed thousands of miles away in the southern Indian Ocean, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said on Monday, citing new satellite data.

All 239 people on board were presumed dead, airline officials said.

Analysis of satellite information from British company Inmarsat had shown that the Boeing 777’s last position was in the Indian Ocean west of Perth, Australia, Najib said in a statement.

“This is a remote location, far from any possible landing sites,” he said. “It is therefore, with deep sadness and regret, that I must inform you that, according to this new data, Flight MH370 ended in the southern Indian Ocean.”

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/nation_world/Malaysia_PM_tells_families_of_missing_jet_passengers_plane_is_lost.html#bvv0fUbgsMYoeFff.99

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Forecasters: Snow Returns To Philadelphia Area Tuesday

It’s now officially spring, but more snow is on its way to the Philadelphia region.

The National Weather Service says a few inches of snow are expected to fall between Tuesday morning and early Wednesday, with most of the Philadelphia area seeing between 1.5 and 3.5 inches.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/Forecasters_Snow_returns_to_Philadelphia_area_Tuesday.html#vhG0q4iuBmY8Vu8w.99

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Criminal Justice, Public Safety Careers Focus Of Biennial Event

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

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

Blue Bell, PAMontgomery County Community College (MCCC) will host its 15th Biennial Criminal Justice and Public Safety Career Day on Wednesday, April 23, from 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. at the Central Campus, 340 DeKalb Pike, Blue Bell.

The event is free of charge and is open to the public, including students from other institutions. For information, contact MCCC Director of Criminal Justice Studies and Fire Science and Emergency Management & Planning Benn Prybutok at 215-641-6428 or bprybuto@mc3.edu .

The event begins with an opening ceremony at 9 a.m., which will include remarks by Montgomery County and MCCC officials and presentation of awards. Then, starting at 10 a.m. participants will have the opportunity to meet with top law enforcement, criminal justice and public safety agencies and recruiters in order to become better acquainted with opportunities in these fields.

More than 50 exhibitors will be in attendance, including municipal police departments, state and federal law enforcement and investigative agencies, private security companies, public safety agencies, four-year baccalaureate programs and area law schools.

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QuadForge UVA Research Project Is MCCC’s ‘Innovation Of The Year’

Innovation of the Year: MCCC’s 2014 Innovation of the Year award recipients (from left) Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs Dr. Andrew Ippolito; Associate Professor of Engineering William Brownlowe and Adjunct Engineering Lecturer Jean Jacques Reymond. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Innovation of the Year: MCCC’s 2014 Innovation of the Year award recipients (from left) Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs Dr. Andrew Ippolito; Associate Professor of Engineering William Brownlowe and Adjunct Engineering Lecturer Jean Jacques Reymond. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Blue Bell/Pottstown, PA— The QuadForge Undergraduate Research Program earned Montgomery County Community College’s 2014 Innovation of the Year award last week during an annual ceremony recognizing projects that advance the College’s mission and strategic goals.

MCCC’s QuadForge program is an open source research project that provides freshmen and sophomore Engineering and Computer Science students with the unique opportunity to develop autonomous quad rotor flight vehicles, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UVAs). The project is made possible by a unique collaboration with the Science and Technology Competence Center in Switzerland, which provides funding for the program.

The QuadForge program partners with industry and government entities to provide real-word product deliverables. To date, students and faculty involved with the project have delivered four quad rotor UVAs to the Suisse Government, which is using them to survey and deliver data between weather stations to aid in predicting potential disasters, such as landslides.

The team’s accomplishments include developing modular flight platforms that feature onboard wi-fi and 4G communications, first-person view, high definition video recording, customized mission computers and the world’s first full weatherization, which enables the UVAs to fly in any environment, such as saltwater, snow and rain.

Those recognized as part of the QuadForge Undergraduate Research Program include Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs Dr. Andrew Ippolito; Associate Professor of Engineering William Brownlowe and Adjunct Engineering Lecturer Jean Jacques Reymond.

To learn more about the QuadForge project at MCCC, visit http://www.quadforge.net.

MCCC’s Innovation of the Year nominees are evaluated against criteria established by the League for Innovation in the Community College—an international organization committed to improving community colleges through innovation. Award criteria include quality, efficiency, cost effectiveness, replication, creativity and timeliness.

As recipient of MCCC’s award, the QuadForge Undergraduate Research Program will be forwarded to the League for Innovation in the Community College for national recognition in a program that is designed to showcase innovation at America’s community colleges.

Other projects nominated the 2014 Innovation of the Year at MCCC included the Cone 6 Transition project that reduces the carbon footprint of the College’s Ceramics firing; the Mustangs Academic Success Program in support of the College’s student athletes; the Green Office Initiative; the College Pathway Academy for Health Professions, in partnership with Phoenixville High School and Phoenixville Hospital; the Production Internship Program with MCCC’s Lively Arts program; the University Center framework; and the Veterans Resource Center.

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‘Dance Emerge’ Dance Concert Showcases Eclectic Work By Emerging Student Choreographers In A Nationally Acclaimed Program

Logo of Muhlenberg College

Logo of Muhlenberg College (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Allentown, PAMuhlenberg College dancers tell their stories through movement, as the Muhlenberg Theatre & Dance Department presents “Dance Emerge,” a showcase for dance works created by emerging choreographers, April 10-13 in the College’s Dance Studio Theatre. Corrie Franz Cowart is the artistic director for the concert.

“Choreographers in this year’s ‘Dance Emerge’ are mining emotional and physical landscapes that celebrate the thrills of life and mourn our human foibles,” Franz Cowart says. “Humor and real-life circumstances are blended with physical skill and choreographic imagination, transforming observations of our world into kinetic and visual journeys for the audience.”

“Dance Emerge” will showcase 12 choreographers and 60 dancers from the department’s dance program, which is among the most highly regarded programs of its kind. The concert features costume and lighting designs by the department’s acclaimed professional staff.

The 12 original dances include contemporary jazz, hip-hop, tap, dance theater, and modern works that investigate such topics as the sensation of getting lost in a book, women’s struggles with power, circus lights, and ritualized behavior. Choreographers drew inspiration from such diverse sources as dance history, travel, personal relationships, and college experiences.

Muhlenberg College’s Theatre & Dance Department offers one of the top-rated college performance programs in the county, according to the Princeton Review rankings.  Muhlenberg is a liberal arts college of more than 2,200 students in Allentown, Pa., offering Bachelor of Arts degrees in theater and dance. It has been named annually among The Fiske Guide to Colleges’ top 20 small college programs in the United States, and the American College Dance Festival Association has consistently recognized dances premiered on the Muhlenberg stage for excellence in choreography and performance.

“Dance Emerge” runs April 10-13 in the Dance Studio Theatre, Trexler Pavilion for Theatre & Dance, Muhlenberg College, 2400 Chew St., Allentown.

Performances are April 10-13: Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m.; Saturday, April 12, at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sunday, April 13, at 2 and 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults, $8 for patrons 17 and under, and $8 for students, faculty and staff of all LVAIC colleges.  For groups of 15 or more, tickets are $13.

Tickets and information are available at 484-664-3333 or www.muhlenberg.edu/dance.

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