http://flymagazine.net/ is a great site to visit if you live in or visit Lancaster, York or Harrisburg. Keeps you up to date on what’s going on, events, dining, music and arts and culture. Happy Friday!
HARRISBURG — The effort to change Pennsylvania’s state liquor monopoly is on a familiar path filled with many obstacles.
The state House voted Thursday to approve turning the wine and liquor retail and wholesale business over to the private sector, but the proposal faces a rough road in the Senate, which failed to take action on a similar proposal in the last session. And Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf favors improving the service in the existing stores to generate more money for the state rather than licensing them to the private sector.
Thursday’s House vote was 114-87 for the proposal, with every Democrat and a few Republicans opposed.
HARRISBURG — Col. Marcus Brown, Gov. Tom Wolf’s choice to lead the state police, has served as a patrol officer, a SWAT commander and the second-in-command of the Baltimore police.
He has led the Maryland Transportation Authority and the Maryland State Police.
But since his swearing-in on the day of Mr. Wolf’s inauguration, a group of retired troopers has taken exception to his decision to don the gray uniform of the Pennsylvania State Police.
They post on a Facebook page created to protest his wearing of the uniform, and encourage others to contact state senators, who must confirm Col. Brown, 50, as state police commissioner. In interviews, retired troopers said their questions are not limited to the uniform but extend to other issues, such as an association with then-Gov. Martin O’Malley’s push for gun-control measures. (Col. Brown has said he supports the Second Amendment and that there are no firearm proposals on the Pennsylvania agenda.)
Planning to visit the 2015 PA Farm Show when it kicks off Saturday?
Here’s a quick guide to where you can see the celebrity chefs, snag a free sample and catch a cooking demo.
The PA Farm Show runs Saturday through Jan. 17 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg. If you’re looking for food, you’ll want to head to the PA Preferred Culinary Connection stage in the complex’s Main Hall.
According to a news release, samples of each dish will be offered to audience members and Pennsylvania wines may be recommended for pairings.
HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane said Wednesday she had fired, suspended, or disciplined about two dozen employees for sending or receiving e-mails containing pornographic content over the last few years.
In a statement, Kane said an internal review had identified 31 workers whose e-mails contained sexually explicit content, although she didn’t say when the messages were sent. The disclosure comes after her office had said it identified 30 other workers in the office who participated in pornographic e-mail exchanges between 2008 and 2012.
The 61 represent just short of 10 percent of the 750 workers in the office.
Of them, Kane said, four have been fired, two will be fired, and two have resigned. Eleven others were suspended without pay, and others were being disciplined or reprimanded in their personnel files.
HARRISBURG, PA — Scranton and other fiscally distressed cities could triple the local services tax to help them move out of Act 47 status under legislation that won final legislative approval with a 43-5 Senate vote Thursday.
This option would be available to Act 47 municipalities only as an alternative to an increased earned income tax already available to them.
Gov. Tom Corbett is expected to sign the bill after a review, said spokesman Jay Pagni. He has 10 days to review the provisions.
The local services tax could potentially triple from $52 annually to $156 annually for individuals working in those municipalities but those earning under $15,600 annually would be exempt from the higher local services tax.
THE HARRISBURG porn circus consuming the state’s Capitol added a third ring yesterday.
The first ring: Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane last month released a selection of explicit emails sent and received by Gov. Corbett‘s top deputies when he was attorney general.
The second ring: State Supreme Court Justice Ron Castille and Justice Seamus McCaffery continued their long-running feud, swapping accusations this week after Castille disclosed that McCaffery sent and received many of the explicit images.
And the third ring: Emails obtained yesterday by the Daily News show that state Supreme Court Justice J. Michael Eakin used a fake name on a Yahoo email account to receive emails with explicit and racist images in 2010.
The air Lancaster County residents breathe continues to be among the worst in the nation, according to the American Lung Association.
In the ALA’s annual “State of the Air” report, which examined federal pollution records from 2010-2012, Lancaster County ranked as the 18th-worst metropolitan area out of 217 in the United States for average daily levels of particle pollution, which is composed of soot, dust particles and aerosols.
The Harrisburg-York-Lebanon metro area was tied with Lancaster.
Lancaster County had an average of 4.7 unhealthy days per year over the three-year period, compared to three unhealthy days in last year’s report.
It may be wet & cold today but Saturday will be sunny & dry. Perfect weather to come out and join Friends of Midtown in the Great Harrisburg Cleanup which runs from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. There will be a dumpster located at the Broad Street Market for the bags of trash & debris collected. Our new incinerator owner, LCSWMA, has agreed to waive the tipping fees and the dumpsters have also been donated by local businesses. This is truly a community event and city-wide as there will be donated dumpsters located in Uptown and Allison Hill.
We will meet at 8:45 am in front of the Broad Street Market on the Third Street side and set our plans to clean up our neighborhood. If you prefer to work with your neighbors in your own block and find hauling your collected trash bags to the Broad Street Market dumpster could be difficult, register your group on the Great Harrisburg Cleanup website at http://historicharrisburg.com/index.php/events/volunteer-registration and indicate what street corner your bags will be placed so they can be picked up by Public Works.
Any questions? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org before 8:00 am on Saturday.
Hope to see you there!
Editor’s note: Lancaster, PA ranked 21st on the list :) The happiest of any Pennsylvania Metropolitan Area. Hey now!
People in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre metropolitan area are among the most miserable in the nation, according to a report that ranks the area 177th out of 189 it surveyed to gauge residents’ sense of well-being.
Their continuing economic downslide, bad memories, misperceptions and even a lack of sunlight may play a part in Northeast Pennsylvanians’ gloomy outlook, some local experts say in commenting on the State of American Well-Being, the report released last week by Gallup and Healthways.
The highest-ranked area was Provo-Orem, Utah, and the lowest-ranked was the Huntington, W.Va.-Ashland, Ky. area. More than 178,000 people across the country were interviewed last year, including a sample size of 1,092 from the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area.
The survey asked people to rate their life evaluation – a combination of current situation evaluation and the anticipated situation in five years – emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors and basic access to health care and other necessities.
Harrisburg, PA — Four Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) students were among 45 students from across the Commonwealth recognized this week for their academic and community achievements.
MCCC students include Serena Dunlap, Gilbertsville; Elizabeth Holleger, Norristown; Angelique Moon, Pottstown; and Shari Nelson, Pottstown.
Collectively, the students comprise the All-PA Academic Team, which is administered nationally by Phi Theta Kappa, the national two-year college honors society. Students were recognized in Harrisburg on March 31, both on the floor of the House of Representatives at the State Capitol, and during a banquet facilitated by the Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges.
Serena Dunlap already graduated from MCCC’s Honors Program in December, earning an associate’s degree in Liberal Studies before transferring to Bryn Mawr College on full scholarship. Her long-term plans include earning a Ph.D. and specializing in art therapy.
After graduating from Boyertown Area High School, Serena spent a semester at a private university, struggling to pay the tuition price out-of-pocket. Then she learned about MCCC’s Honors Program, which offers full-tuition scholarships for high-achieving students.
“I chose to attend community college because it was affordable,” Dunlap said. “Not only is it affordable, but it is very easy to get involved on campus and in the community itself, which makes it a pleasure to attend. Affordability was my goal when I decided to attend community college, but what community college gives in education and community is priceless.”
On campus, Dunlap was very engaged in student life, serving as vice president of the Student Government Association, president of the Environmental Club, member of Phi Theta Kappa, and as the Northwest Regional Representative of the American Student Association of Community Colleges (ASACC). She also worked as a peer mentor in the College’s Upward Bound program and served as a student representative on the President’s Climate Council and Student Life Committee.
Elizabeth Holleger is an Education in the Early Years major who hopes to one day work as an elementary school teacher and reading specialist after earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Education. She dedicates her time to volunteering and performing service work in the community in memory of her mother, who lost her battle with invasive breast cancer in 2007.
“I decided to turn a difficult situation into a positive one, and I started volunteering and fundraising in my mother’s memory,” Holleger said. “I want to do all that I can to help others who are also affected by breast cancer. It has become a huge part of my life, and I often volunteer together with my sisters and brothers. My mother’s death has allowed me to grow as a person and to think positively about any situation.”
On campus, Holleger was instrumental in helping to charter the College’s first-ever Rotaract community service club, and she serves as its secretary. She is also a member of Phi Theta Kappa honors society, and she participated in Alternative Spring Break, during which she volunteered for five days at The Samaritan Woman in Baltimore, Md.
Holleger currently holds a 4.0 grade point average (GPA), which she plans to maintain through next December when she will graduate from MCCC with an associate’s degree.
Angelique Moon proudly became the first woman in her family to earn a college degree when she completed her associate’s degree coursework in December at MCCC. A mother of three boys, Moon was majoring in Business when she signed up for a drawing class to fill an elective.
“I never really knew what I wanted or who I was until after I took this [drawing] class. It changed my life,” she expressed.
Because art helped Moon overcome her social anxiety, she wants to help others to help themselves through art, too. She is currently taking more Fine Arts classes at MCCC and hopes to continue her studies at Kutztown University.
“As far as my long-term goals, I would love to teach but I know that many public schools are removing the arts; therefore, I am keeping an open mind to possibly curating at a museum,” she said. “I also plan to show my work as often as possible and to volunteer my services as an instructor to spread the love of art and to teach others how to express themselves through art.”
Shari Nelson chose to attend MCCC so that she could pursue a degree while helping with her family’s business–Nelson Illusions, a theater company specializing in magic and illusion. A Liberal Studies major at MCCC’s West Campus, Nelson plans to earn bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics and hopes to one day teach math, while continuing to work in the arts and to travel as a professional magician and illusionist.
“Learning has always been important to me, and I love understanding new things and applying them to my life and work,” shared Nelson. “Montgomery County Community College has given me the opportunity to achieve my education and work with wonderful professors while still being able to continue my jobs. At college I aim to learn the most I can to better myself and, hopefully, my future family.”
Nelson will graduate this summer from MCCC with an associate’s degree in Liberal Studies. On campus, she co-founded the West End Student Theatre club and is a member of Phi Theta Kappa. She also volunteered during MLK Day of Service and as a new student orientation leader. As a magician, Nelson has earned four major awards, including the Magicians Alliance of the Eastern States Award of Excellence, and has competed nationally in magic competitions.
Members of the All-PA Academic Team qualify for two-year scholarships to any of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) institutions and compete at the national level for scholarships from the All-USA Academic Team and the Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team. To learn more, visit http://www.pacommunitycolleges.org.
HARRISBURG, PA – Concerns about a spate of drug overdose deaths in Pennsylvania have put the spotlight on legislation to create a state database to monitor illegal use of prescription drugs.
The issue surfaced last month during state Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane’s budget hearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee.
Passage of monitoring legislation is key to combatting illegal drug use, Kane said. Prescription drug abuse is often a gateway to heroin use, she said.
“We have a heroin problem,” Kane said. “We also have a prescription pill problem.”
Will Sellers appeared amazed as he stared at roughly 1,000 pounds of butter fashioned into a three-dimensional image that depicts a guy selling milkshakes beside two cows dancing on their hind legs.
“I’ve never seen a butter sculpture,” said Sellers, of Luling, La.
Sellers was in Harrisburg on Thursday to help his father-in-law — Larry Hamilton, owner of Potter County-based Hamilton’s Maple Products — set up a display for the family’s business at the 98th Pennsylvania Farm Show.
The sculpture, a longtime tradition at the show, is expected to attract hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the world, Farm Show officials said.
Show hours are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Jan. 4 through 11 and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 12
Editor’s note: Ms. Thompson landed in the number two spot. A rather infamous list of mayoral faux pas from around the globe. Way to go LT for putting Harrisburg in the international spotlight.
The Year in Mayors’ Gaffes
A road to political purgatory, from bad to worst
Multiple adults and juveniles were shot as they left a youth party at the Community Center at Walnut and Hoerner streets in Harrisburg early Saturday morning.
Police were dispatched to a shooting report at North 16th and Walnut streets at 12:55, and upon arrival, were directed to Walnut and Hoerner streets to investigate a report of multiple shots fired.
As the investigation was underway, several people arrived to area hospitals with non-life-threatening gunshot wounds.
After two days of record breaking rainfall, the sun is once again visible in the Harrisburg area this morning.
Some parts of the Cumberland, York and Dauphin counties received more than ten inches of rain during the last 48 hours, according to estimates by the National Weather Service in State College.
The Harrisburg area officially received a total of 9.74 inches of rain on Thursday and Friday, according to measurements taken at the Harrisburg International Airport.
Friday’s rainfall in Harrisburg was measured at 5.72 inches. That crushed the previous high for Oct. 11, which was 1.47 inches, set in 1905.
The son of a local McDonald’s franchisee has asked the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and McDonald’s Corp. to investigate employee harassment charges that he has lodged against his father.
Jason Rippon filed a complaint with the EEOC in August in which he alleges that his father, H. James Rippon, has ordered employees to help solicit prostitutes, regularly sexually harasses workers and makes racist comments to staff.
James Rippon, 72, had a manager at one of his three restaurants send text messages to prostitutes he was soliciting, according to his son’s complaint. James Rippon allegedly had the worker send the texts because he didn’t know how to send messages from his own cellphone.
Marysville Borough Council fired the borough’s police chief Monday night.
Carl Lehman, who had been a member of Marysville Police Department for 12 years, was fired for personnel reasons, said Scott Weaver, borough manager.
It was a unanimous vote of the seven-member council, he said. “He didn’t do anything illegal,” Weaver said, adding that there are “all kinds of allegations” circulating that are not true.
There was an investigation by the borough’s mayor and solicitor, Weaver said, which led to the chief’s firing.
This is not your twenty-somethings’ Second Street. Sure, Harrisburg’s Restaurant Row remains a haven for newly-minted but decidedly inexperienced drinkers that can lead to problems for establishment owners, their patrons and police.
But over the past year, there has been a deliberate shift on Second Street. Its character has mellowed and matured, some business owners say. And the proof is in the character of the crowds. It’s a slightly older customer base now seen in upstart — and upscale — establishments such as the Federal Taphouse, the Susquehanna Ale House and the Second Street Comedy Club.
The turning point came in early 2012. After a string of stabbings, including a fatality, the Dragonfly nightclub abruptly closed. Instead of a driving beat, the space was given over to craft beer and gourmet burgers with the summer opening of the Federal Taphouse. By all accounts, the joint venture of Corey Fogarty of Fogarty Hospitality and Judd Goodman of Brubar Inc. has been a smashing success.
Not only is business good. Business as usual has changed on Second Street as a result. Crowds are a little older. Instead of bargain beer specials, thirty- and forty-somethings are spending $7 and $8 a beer. They’re coming in for dinner, shifting peak hours to between 5 p.m. and midnight, instead of midnight to 2 a.m.