Carbondale Adopts 2015 Budget With Wage Tax Increase

CARBONDALE, PA — City council on Monday unanimously adopted a budget for 2015 that raises the city’s wage tax a notch to cover an anticipated $120,000 deficit.

Council voted 7-0, with Joseph Marzzacco, Kathleen Connor, Jerry Arnese, Francis Lagana, John Masco, John Gigliotti and Walter Martzen all in favor, on both a budget appropriation ordinance and a separate ordinance raising the earned-income tax from 1.6 percent to 1.7 percent.

Increasing the city portion of the earned-income tax from 1.6 percent to 1.7 percent would equate to an extra $24 levied on a resident with the city’s median earnings of $23,893.

With the school wage tax remaining at 0.5 percent, the total wage tax on a Carbondale resident now will increase from the current 2.1 percent to 2.2 percent next year, when the one-tenth-of-1-percent hike is implemented.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/carbondale-adopts-2015-budget-with-wage-tax-increase-1.1803584

Carbondale Recognized As Top Spot By PA Route 6 Alliance

Map of U.S. Route 6 in Pennsylvania

Map of U.S. Route 6 in Pennsylvania (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

CARBONDALE, PA – An investment in Carbondale’s rich history, a new hotel and improvements to sidewalks and streetlights downtown helped the city garner top honors from a nonprofit dedicated to promoting tourism along historic Route 6.

The PA Route 6 Alliance named Carbondale as the Heritage Community of the Year, making it No. 1 among more than 20 heritage communities that stretch along the 427 miles of Route 6 in Pennsylvania.

“It’s nice to be recognized for working so hard,” Carbondale Mayor Justin Taylor said.

Carbondale began working toward a Route 6 Heritage Community designation in 2003, Mr. Taylor said. The Route 6 Alliance is a nonprofit organization that promotes tourism and economic development along the Route 6 corridor in Pennsylvania.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/carbondale-recognized-as-top-spot-by-pa-route-6-alliance-1.1675579

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At Least 36 Displaced In Carbondale Fire

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County (Photo Wikipedia)

The fire alarm was piercing, but it had sounded plenty of times in the 15 years Mary Gerzie has lived in Building L of Carbondale’s Summit Garden Apartments. What really frightened her was the thick black smoke that billowed into her apartment when she opened her door.

Then came the shouts of “get out of here.”

Mrs. Gerzie, 72, was one of at least 36 people that were taken out of the apartment complex and into the lightly falling snow Friday morning while firefighters worked to stop a fire on the first floor, said Carbondale Fire Chief Chris Pezak.

“The smoke was so intense,” said Chief Pezak of the fire that damaged part of the building around 8 a.m.. “It was very thick black smoke.”

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/at-least-36-displaced-in-carbondale-fire-1.1593134

Urgent-Care Clinic Opens In Carbondale Months After Hospital Closes

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

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

CARBONDALE, PA – When Marian Community Hospital closed in late February, Upvalley residents had no other options for immediate care between Honesdale and Scranton.

Helping fill health care needs in the area, Pioneer City Urgent Care, a seven-day-a-week clinic, has opened to treat anything from bronchitis to earaches and bone fractures.

“Having an urgent-care clinic in our city is vitally important to our residents and the surrounding area,” said Carbondale Mayor Justin Taylor, a former emergency medical technician. “This is really the first line of defense with anyone with a medical situation.”

Jaime A. Cook, R.N., practice manager for the clinic and a registered nurse, said people should consider the new facility instead of driving out of the area for medical assistance.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/urgent-care-clinic-opens-in-carbondale-months-after-hospital-closes-1.1350312

Carbondale Area School Board To Eliminate 11 Teaching Positions

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

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

CARBONDALE, PA  – Several Carbondale Area teachers aired concerns about the elimination of 11 teaching positions at a special work session held Saturday morning.

The school board will vote to approve the $21 million budget for 2012-13 on June 20. The budget does not contain a tax increase, but school district officials expect to save about $600,000 by not replacing 11 teachers retiring this year, according to business manager David Cerra.

But the eliminated positions could also lead to larger class sizes and fewer elective options, teachers who attended Saturday’s work session said.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/carbondale-area-school-board-to-eliminate-11-teaching-positions-1.1327527

Carbondale Losing Hospital And Largest Employer

Carbondale, PA‘s largest employer and the last remaining Catholic-affiliated hospital in the region will close by Feb. 28, a move officials said was unavoidable as the number of patients dwindled and financial struggles multiplied.

Marian Community Hospital will have an operating loss of $2.6 million this year and projected an operating loss of more than $4 million in 2012, according to Mary Theresa Vautrinot, president and CEO of parent company Maxis Health System.

The hospital is licensed for 70 beds but scaled back to 35 in January 2010, according to hospital officials. For the past six months, the hospital has had an average daily census of 20 patients.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/marian-community-hospital-to-close-1.1238179#ixzz1f9WtkRfP