MCCC Accounting Students Prepare Tax Returns Through VITA Program

ACCOUNTING GROUP: Montgomery County Community College students volunteer their time to prepare taxes at the Montgomery County Community Action Development Commission (CADCOM) VITA site in Norristown. Pictured (from left) are students Chenyang “Julia” Zhang, Yi “Joy” Zhao, Accounting Instructor Rita Meyhew, students Jinman “Jean” Li, Jingxu Zhu and Amanda Zhou. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Norristown, PA — A group of Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) accounting students are gaining real-world experience preparing federal and state income tax returns for lower income households.

Through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, eight MCCC students, along with Rita Mayhew, an Accounting instructor and the faculty advisor to the student Accounting Club, have been volunteering their time at the Montgomery County Community Action Development Commission (CADCOM) office in Norristown. Since February, five students join Mayhew every Saturday for three hours. Their services will continue through April 15.

“I’m extremely proud of the effort that they’ve put into this,” Mayhew said. “They learned the software. They’re talking to the clients. They have gained a lot of confidence.”

MCCC’s accounting faculty added a curriculum requirement that five percent of a student’s grade is based on successful VITA certification. Faculty do not mandate that students volunteer. However, doing so provides students with real-world learning to reinforce and build upon what’s taught in the classroom.

“Besides learning, they’ve had tax courses, but until you actually do the work and put it into practice, maybe it doesn’t all gel,” Mayhew said. “This group in particular, they’re just very focused on learning.”

For some MCCC student volunteers, including Jinman “Jean” Li, English is their second language. For Li, a Business Administration student who plans to major in Accounting, the tax return process was unfamiliar. In her native China, tax returns are not filed.

Li said she is excited about the opportunity to gain more accounting knowledge.

“I can help people and I also can get some experience,” she said. “I just feel so happy.”

Ken Haubert, CADCOM’s director of asset development, echoed those sentiments.

“They are the best there is,” Haubert said of MCCC student volunteers and their dedication. “This is our best year by far, in our partnership with the community college, thanks to Rita.”

In all, Mayhew estimates that students will have completed 200 tax returns – or possibly more – through tax season.

Last year, 1,565 total tax returns were filed through CADCOM’s VITA program, according to Haubert. This year, with more volunteers, particularly from MCCC, Haubert anticipates even more returns being completed.

In order to qualify for VITA tax preparation services, households cannot make more than $54,000. Last year’s average income for those served at CADCOM VITA sites was $19,600, according to Haubert. The free service saved clients $352,000 in tax preparation fees last year.  This, when added to refunds of $2,626,325, generated a total community economic impact of $4,175,855 at CADCOM VITA sites alone, he said. 

Haubert said student volunteers not only benefit his program, but the community and the students as well.

“They are dealing with personalities of clients,” Haubert said. “You have to use your tact and your interpersonal skills to make them feel comfortable.

In the end, he said, students gain “real life experiences.”

VITA services are available at multiple locations throughout Montgomery County. To find the location closest to you, dial 2-1-1 from your telephone and follow the prompts. To schedule an appointment at CADCOM’s Norristown location, clients may also call 610-277-6363 ext. 115.

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The Culinary Arts Institute Of MCCC Announces New Partnership With Johnson & Wales University‏

 The Culinary Arts Institute (CAI) of Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) and Johnson & Wales University celebrated a new partnership agreement that will allow CAI graduates to seamlessly transfer to Johnson & Wales to earn their baccalaureate degrees. From left:  MCCC Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost Dr. Victoria Bastecki-Perez, CAI Director Chef Francine Marz, CAI student Jacqueline Ramos, MCCC Interim President Dr. James Linksz and Johnson & Wales Pennsylvania Admissions Representative Sharon Macko. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

The Culinary Arts Institute (CAI) of Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) and Johnson & Wales University celebrated a new partnership agreement that will allow CAI graduates to seamlessly transfer to Johnson & Wales to earn their baccalaureate degrees. From left: MCCC Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost Dr. Victoria Bastecki-Perez, CAI Director Chef Francine Marz, CAI student Jacqueline Ramos, MCCC Interim President Dr. James Linksz and Johnson & Wales Pennsylvania Admissions Representative Sharon Macko. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Lansdale, PA —Graduates from The Culinary Arts Institute (CAI) of Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) can now seamlessly transfer to Johnson & Wales University (JWU), Rhode Island, thanks to a recent articulation agreement signed by the institutions. The agreement encourages and facilitates the transfer of qualifying MCCC graduates to Johnson & Wales to complete their baccalaureate degrees in specific programs.

Under the agreement, MCCC students who graduate with a Culinary Arts Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree may transfer to Johnson & Wales’ Culinary Arts and Food Service Management Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree program. Also, MCCC students who graduate with a Management A.A.S. degree with a Hospitality Management Concentration may transfer to Johnson & Wales’ Hotel and Lodging Management B.S. degree program.

“This is an exciting opportunity for our Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management students,” said Dr. Victoria Bastecki-Perez, MCCC Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost. “By forming this partnership, Johnson & Wales recognizes the quality and rigorous curricula designed and delivered by our faculty at the College. We are delighted to partner with Johnson & Wales to provide this seamless pathway for our graduates.”

“I am pleased this agreement is finalized, because as an alumna, I know that having a bachelor’s degree from a highly regarded institution like Johnson & Wales opened many doors for me, and I want our students to have the same opportunities,” said CAI Director Chef Francine Marz.

While MCCC’s graduates have successfully transferred to institutions across the country and world, building formal relationships with select colleges and universities streamlines the transfer process. These partnerships also introduce students to transfer destinations they may not have considered, such as leading institutions like Johnson & Wales.

“This agreement offers MCCC students an affordable opportunity to continue their education and meet their career goals,” said James M. Richard, Director of JWU Culinary Admissions. “Students who transfer from MCCC to Johnson & Wales will join a diverse student body and receive a global education and graduate with the skills needed for today’s workforce.”

CAI students, such as Jacqueline Ramos, have been looking forward to this new partnership.

“For the past few months, I’ve waited anxiously to hear about this agreement.  Finally, today, with much excitement, I have been told ‘yes,’ the agreement is finalized, and I can start the process to transfer to Johnson & Wales after graduation from The Culinary Arts Institute of Montgomery County Community College,” said Ramos, who has dreamed about a culinary career since she was a teenager.

This agreement is the first between MCCC’s Culinary Arts Institute and a four-year institution. Overall, MCCC has transfer agreements with close to 60 colleges and universities. To learn more about transfer opportunities at MCCC, visit mc3.edu/student-resources/transfer-services/transfer-agreements.

About Johnson & Wales University

Founded in 1914, Johnson & Wales University is a private, nonprofit, accredited institution with more than 16,000 graduate, undergraduate and online students at its four campuses in Providence, R.I.; North Miami, Fla.; Denver, Colo.; and Charlotte, N.C. An innovative educational leader, the university offers degree programs in arts and sciences, business, culinary arts, education, nutrition, hospitality, physician assistant studies, engineering and design. Its unique model integrates arts and sciences and industry-focused education with work experience and leadership opportunities, inspiring students to achieve professional success and lifelong personal growth. The university’s impact is global, with alumni from 119 countries pursuing careers worldwide. For more information, visit www.jwu.edu.

About Montgomery County Community College

Montgomery County Community College offers a comprehensive curriculum of more than 100 degree and certificate programs, a Virtual Campus, a Culinary Arts Institute, a Municipal Police Academy, and specialized workforce development programs, all of which leverage the College’s nationally ranked use of innovative technology. An Achieving the Dream (AtD) Leader College, the institution is positioned at the vanguard of national efforts to increase completion, improve learning outcomes, and remove barriers to access for close to 20,000 students annually. The College is also recognized regionally and nationally for its sustainability leadership, work with military veterans, and community service and service learning opportunities. For more information, visithttp://www.mc3.edu.

About The Culinary Arts Institute

The Culinary Arts Institute of Montgomery County Community College is the region’s home for innovative, affordable culinary arts education and training. The Culinary Arts program includes both associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit culinary enthusiast and professional development course offerings. The 15,000-square-foot facility at 1400 Forty Foot Road, Lansdale, in Towamencin Township, is conveniently located near the Blue Route (I-476) and the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The facility features four state-of-the-art kitchens and equipment, three SMART classrooms, and a retail bakery café, Forty Foot Café, and Bistro 1400 restaurant, where students can develop real-world food preparation and customer service skills. For more information, visit http://www.mc3.edu/culinary.

Applications Being Accepted For $10000 Arts Scholarship‏

ArtFusion-color600 1Pottstown, PA – Applications are now being accepted for the 2016 Greater Pottstown Foundation Scholarship for the Arts. This $10,000 scholarship is designed to financially assist a local high school senior from Pottstown, Pottsgrove, Owen J. Roberts or The Hill School in obtaining a degree from accredited academic institutions of higher learning for study in the arts. ArtFusion 19464 is proud to partner for the fifth year with the Foundation to present this scholarship.

GPF Logo Final BWThe scholarship is awarded based on two criteria:  artistic performance as displayed at the Greater Pottstown Foundation Scholarship Art Exhibit at ArtFusion 19464, and an essay on why the applicant wants to continue their education in the arts.  The applicant’s intended field of study must include a major or a minor in an arts-related field.

Applications can be downloaded at the ArtFusion website (http://artfusion19464.org/classes/scholarshipsprograms/) or sent via email by contactinginfo@artfusion19464.org. A paper copy can be picked up at their 254 E. High St. location.  Applications and essays are due by February 29. The artwork for the mandatory art show at ArtFusion does not need to be completed until the May 14 drop off date.

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 10:00 am-5:00 pm and Saturday 10:00 am-3:00 pm. The gallery is closed Sunday and Monday.

New Exhibit Features Best In Show Winners At ArtFusion

Attached: mconceptions.jpg. logo image for the show © 2015 Microsoft Terms Privacy & cookies Developers English (United States)

Attached: mconceptions.jpg. logo image for the show
© 2015 Microsoft Terms Privacy & cookies Developers English (United States)

Pottstown, PA – ArtFusion’s latest show MythConceptions will open on November 7 and run through November 21.  This show will feature artwork from the winners of the Best in Show contest from ArtFusion’s 2015 Winter Member Show. Visitors to the show voted for their favorite artists and the two artists who received the most votes won their own show. Artists Dora Siemel and Gwendolyn Lanier-Gardner will present an amazing collection of 3D and 2D artwork. Gwendolyn and Dora invite the community to a meet the artists reception on Friday, November 13 from 6-8pm.

Dora Siemel was born in Matto Grosso, Brazil. In addition to being a sculptor, she is a poet, a computer consultant, a martial artist and a yoga instructor.  Dora has had her own studio in Green Lane, Pennsylvania since 1992. Her sculpture medium is clay. The colors come from any combination of glazes, oxides, paints and waxes. Dora says, “When it feels appropriate, I incorporate found objects into my sculptures. These can be metal, fiber, bone or anything else that seems to fit with the rest of the sculpture.”

Her work has been included in various juried shows including the Pottstown Area Artists Guild’s “Art on the Hill” show, the Lansdale Festival of the Arts, the Norristown Art League, the Meadowood Art Show, the Woodmere Art Museum Show, the Phillips Mill Art Show, the New Hope Art League Show, the Bucks Byers Fever Show, the Bucks County Sculpture Show, the FODC Show and the GoggleWorks Annual Show. Her pieces have won numerous local prizes, including three “Best of Show” awards.

Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Gwendolyn Lanier- Gardner began making art in 2000 at the Essex Art Center in Lawrence, Massachusetts. In 2009 Gwendolyn received her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Studio Arts degree at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston MA.  Her primary focus as an undergraduate was Ceramics Figurative Sculpture. In 2012 she received her Post Baccalaureate in Graduate Studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia PA, where her exploration of drawing led her to her current body of work.

Gwendolyn’s art has been featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Lawrence Eagle Tribune, and at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts during the 2008 NCECA Confluence Conference. She has shown her work at the Woman Made Gallery in Chicago, Katherine Weems Gallery in Boston, and other galleries across the East Coast. Gwendolyn is currently a Working Artist Member and instructor at ArtFusion.

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.

Judge: UPMC Must Provide In-Network Access To Highmark Medicare Members

DSC01842More than 180,000 seniors who rely on Highmark Inc. for Medicare Advantage will keep in-network access to UPMC at least until 2019, Commonwealth Court President Judge Dan Pellegrini ordered Friday.

His three-page decision commands the Downtown-based rivals into binding arbitration to resolve other disagreements they cannot settle on their own — a move that delighted Gov. Tom Wolf and Attorney General Kathleen Kane.

UPMC vowed to appeal to the state Supreme Court.

“The feud between these two companies must end — the people of Western Pennsylvania have had enough,” Wolf said in a statement.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/8465390-74/upmc-access-network#ixzz3bd7KLBrW
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PPG Axes 1,700 Jobs As Part Of Global Restructuring

DSC01801PPG Industries Inc. is trimming 4 percent of its global workforce as the world’s largest paint and coatings company tries to reduce costs related to a spate of recent acquisitions.

The Downtown-based company said it was cutting 1,700 jobs as part of a restructuring that also includes reducing production capacity. About 40 of PPG’s 2,500-person workforce in Pittsburgh will lose jobs, the company said.

PPG is aiming to achieve $100 million to $105 million in annual pretax savings by 2017 from the restructuring. Further details of the capacity reductions were not available, the company said.

PPG spent about $2.4 billion buying companies last year, part of a long-term strategy to grow through acquisitions.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/8177530-74/million-share-ppg#ixzz3XUlxVMxb
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Scranton Commuter Tax Struck Down By Judge

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

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

Scranton commuters will not have to pay a commuter tax.

Senior Judge John Braxton of Philadelphia issued an order today striking down Scranton’s commuter tax.

The judge dismissed two procedural objections made by petitioners opposing the commuter tax, but agreed that Act 205 doesn’t give the city power to exclusively levy a tax on commuters. The wage tax had to be levied on both nonresidents and residents.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/commuter-tax-struck-down-by-judge-1.1762802

2 Top Corporations Move Headquarters To Pittsburgh’s ‘Dynamic Marketplace’

Duquesne University's view of the Pittsburgh s...

Duquesne University’s view of the Pittsburgh skyline. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Two regional companies announced Wednesday that they will make Pittsburgh their headquarters — beckoned from their suburban bases by a desire to be in a thriving big city that could help increase their profiles.

Michael Baker International and the parent company of First National Bank of Pennsylvania aren’t pulling up the stakes and relocating all their employees to Pittsburgh from their old headquarters. They have simply identified Pittsburgh as the place they will call home.

Michael Baker International LLC, a $1.2 billion construction-engineering company, will move its headquarters and 65 workers from Moon to the two top floors of Bank of New York Mellon Center, Downtown, in December. It will still retain a significant presence in Moon.

F.N.B. Corp. said it will ditch Hermitage, Mercer County, as the headquarters city for the region’s third-largest bank. It said the decision to make the Pittsburgh North Shore its home base will not impact employees.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/6418044-74/pittsburgh-delie-national#ixzz375QXA4JW

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Tax Increase Set For State College Area School District Residents

Counties constituting the Happy Valley Region ...

Counties constituting the Happy Valley Region of Pennsylvania (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 — Taxpayers in the State College Area School District will see a 1.95 percent tax increase after the district school board adopted its final general fund budget Monday.

Board members unanimously approved, with no discussion, a real estate tax increase from 38.75 mills to 39.5056 mills, with each mill representing $3.95 per $100 of assessed value.

Under the budget of $126,791,664 for the fiscal year starting July 1 and ending June 30, 2015, the median district homeowner will pay an additional $54, according to the district.

The district projects that the tax increase will add $1.56 million in revenue, while assessed value growth will provide another $1.2 million.

Nearby Businesses Can’t Escape Effects As PNC Tower Goes Up In Downtown Pittsburgh

Locator map with the Central Business District...

Locator map with the Central Business District neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania highlighted. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As a $400 million project to build PNC Financial Services Group’s new corporate headquarters nears the midpoint, surrounding business owners are anxiously awaiting completion of Downtown’s biggest skyscraper in more than a quarter-century.

Some look forward to an anticipated boost in business. Others long for their misery to end.

“It’s tough to complain about progress, but this project has definitely been a struggle for us,” said Rob Kania, owner of Metropolitan Preschool & Nursery, which runs a Fifth Avenue facility in the shadow of the project.

Most agree The Tower at PNC Plaza will become a jewel in the city’s skyline. PNC hopes it will be the world’s most environmentally friendly office building.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/allegheny/6233934-74/pnc-project-tower#ixzz34AFlxv00
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U.S. Postal Service Pays Employee To Drive Letter Carrier Who Lost License Due To DUI

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

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

What happens if you lose your license due to a drunk driving arrest, and you have to drive a truck for your job?

If you are a U.S. Postal Service employee, your boss just pays somebody else to drive you around for a while.

That’s what has happened in Lititz, where James E. Avers, 34, of Mount Joy, has been getting a paid chauffeur to drive him until he gets his license back, after pleading guilty to four counts of drunken driving.

The 2011 DUI arrest in East Hempfield Township was Avers’ second  for drunk driving, according to court records.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/news/local/u-s-postal-service-pays-employee-to-drive-letter-carrier/article_3da9ddc8-efed-11e3-899b-0017a43b2370.html

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Controversial Deer Kill Thins Valley Forge Herd

White-tailed deer in Toronto, Canada

White-tailed deer in Toronto, Canada (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jeff Houdret once enjoyed watching white-tailed deer roam Valley Forge National Historical Park.

But Houdret, whose Wayne home borders Valley Forge, has not seen a deer in at least a year.

“They’re all gone,” he said as he walked his two Yorkshire terriers through the park on Thursday afternoon.

With birth control not yet a viable option for combatting deer overpopulation, officials from Valley Forge said they would continue to employ sharpshooters next winter as part of their deer management plan.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20140609_Controversial_deer_kill_thins_Valley_Forge_herd.html#Lss3le0CP020DwoL.99

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Bloomfield, Friendship Neighborhoods See Real Estate Price Upsurge

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)

It didn’t matter to Kate Hansen that the temperature had dropped below zero on the January day when she went house hunting in Bloomfield. It didn’t matter that so much snow and ice covered the region she couldn’t even tell if the property had grass in the backyard or a decent roof.

Location was everything for Ms. Hansen, 32, a project manager for the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council’s Office of Public Art.

She wanted more than anything to own a home in the Bloomfield neighborhood. At the rate house prices in that area were rising, she didn’t feel she had the luxury of waiting until spring. She made an offer that day.

“I was a little nervous not being able to see it,” she said, adding that the house also was the first she looked at. “I knew the street, though. My best friend lives across the street from the place I bought. I knew it was a good location just from him living there.”

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/business/2014/05/25/Bloomfield-Friendship-neighborhoods-see-real-estate-price-upsurge/stories/201405250030#ixzz32mNViblX

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7th Annual Montgomery County CareerLink Job Fair

Wednesday, April 30, 2014
9:30 am – 2 pm
DoubleTree by Hilton
Philadelphia – Valley Forge
301 West DeKalb Pike • King of Prussia, PA 19406

CONTACT
Melinda Onchitta
610.270.3429 x 234
MOnchitt@montcopa.org
http://www.Montcoworks.org

Participating Companies
CSL Behring • Albert Einstein Medical Center • Cobham
Clinical Financial Services • University of the Sciences
Globus Medical, Inc • Robert Half • HCR Manorcare
Acme Corrugated Box, Co., Inc
Manpower International Inc • JRF America, Inc
Tri County Transit Service, Inc
Securitas Security Services USA, Inc
The Carney Group • Univest Corporation of Pennsylvania
Kencrest Services • ECRI Institute

Click here for registration forms, directions, parking…http://montcopa.org/index.aspx?NID=1786

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U.S. Senator Bob Casey Backs Community Development Funding

English: Official photo of Senator Bob Casey (...

English: Official photo of Senator Bob Casey (D-PA). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — U.S. Sen. Bob Casey wants more money allocated to the Community Development Block Grant program to allow municipalities to decide what projects are most needed and have the funding to complete them.

During a teleconference Wednesday, Casey, D-Scranton, said the Obama administration has proposed cutting CDBG funding by more than $200 million this year. Casey wants the allocation to be increased in 2015.

“CDBG has played an instrumental role in advancing locally driven projects that create jobs and contribute to economic growth,” Casey said. “The cuts proposed in the administration’s budget could limit the ability of municipalities in Pennsylvania to complete economic development projects that are essential.”

He said he’s pushing for Congress to increase the funding.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1298260/Casey-backs-community-development-funding

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New Dates For Montco Commissioners’ Postponed Town Hall Meetings

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

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

Norristown, PA – The Montgomery County Commissioners have released the new dates for the “Conversations with your Commissioners” town hall meetings that had to be postponed because of the spate of bad weather over the past few weeks.

The wintry weather forced the postponement of three of the six town hall meetings.  Those postponed were in Lower Pottsgrove, Bryn Mawr, and Abington.  The new dates for those meetings are:

Wednesday, March 5 at 7 p.m.

Lower Pottsgrove Township Building

3199 Buchert Road

Pottstown, PA

Tuesday, March 11 at 7 p.m.

Lower Merion Township Building

75 East Lancaster Avenue

Ardmore, PA

Saturday, March 22 at 10 a.m.

Abington Township Building

1176 Old York Road

Abington, PA

“These conversations with the commissioners are another in a series of ways we are trying to keep residents informed about what we are doing,” said Josh Shapiro, chair of the commissioners.  “We also live stream our meetings online and use social media a great deal to inform everyone about what is going on in the county.”

“We urge residents to attend these conversations so they can hear what we have tried to do during our first two years in office, and we can hear what issues are most important to our residents,” Shapiro said.

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

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Pottsville Mayor Describes City’s Challenge To Fix Streets

View of Pottsville, Pennsylvania.

View of Pottsville, Pennsylvania. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

While giving his first State of the City address Thursday night, Pottsville Mayor James T. Muldowney deviated from his 11-page speech only once.

Before giving the crowd of more than 75 in council chambers an update on streets and public improvements, Muldowney, 56, said: “My wife told me I should ad lib a little bit. So, God bless you, Ron. And you too, Dan.”

He was referring to Councilman Ronald J. Moser, who heads up the city’s streets and public improvements department, and the challenge Moser and city officials, including Superintendent of Streets Daniel E. Kelly, will face as a result of the wicked winter.

“Dan Kelly and the men that work in this department have the skills and determination to help our residents brave the worst of weather,” Muldowney said.

Read more: http://republicanherald.com/news/mayor-describes-city-s-challenge-to-fix-streets-1.1638282

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Pittsburgh International Struggling Despite The Region’s Robust Economy

FAA Airport Diagram of KPIT

FAA Airport Diagram of KPIT (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald describes Pittsburgh International Airport as an economic engine for Western Pennsylvania.

Yet while Fitzgerald points to improved employment, production and tourism as signs of the region’s economic vitality, growth at Pittsburgh International is stalled.

“I can’t explain it,” Fitzgerald said of the incongruity between the region’s surging economy and an airport that is scuffling in its core business of flying.

The airport was on pace through November to post its lowest annual passenger total since opening in 1992, according to the latest data. It recently learned that 600 airline jobs will vanish when the new American Airlines, created through a merger with US Airways, closes a flight operations center in Moon by next year. An unused section of one concourse in the $1 billion airport remains walled-off. The airport doesn’t have a CEO.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/5501301-74/airport-pittsburgh-fitzgerald#ixzz2sHkI4LvV
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2nd Winner Of $636M Lottery Jackpot Comes Forward

Map of California showing the primary cities a...

Map of California showing the primary cities and roadways (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SAN JOSE, Calif.California Lottery officials say the second of two winners of the $636 million Mega Millions jackpot has come forward to claim the prize.

Steve Tran of Northern California came forward Thursday afternoon, 16 days after officials revealed there were two winning jackpot tickets.

The other winner, Ira Curry, is from Georgia and came forward to claim her prize Dec. 18. Lottery officials there say she opted to take the lump sum payment of about $120 million after taxes.

The winning ticket in California was purchased at a gift shop in San Jose. The gift shop owner will receive $1 million.

Read more: http://www.ydr.com/nation-world/ci_24840456/2nd-winner-636m-lottery-jackpot-comes-forward

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Philly Fires 13 Part-Timers For Double-Dipping

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Philadelphia ...

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

Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Department has fired or accepted resignations from 13 part-time workers after an investigation found that they had violated rules against double-dipping in public employment.

Ten were schoolteachers, two were U.S. Postal Service employees and one worked for the state Attorney General’s Office. All 13 lost their part-time gigs with the city as assistant recreation-center leaders, but may keep their full-time jobs.

None of the fired workers appear to be accused of holding “no-show” positions or failing to fulfill their responsibilities in both jobs.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/politics/city/20140103_City_fires_13_part-timers_for_double-dipping.html#KUefjX46dMcM2GtA.99

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