Pennsylvania

Hershey puts kibosh on Cadbury imports

PA Watercooler - 5 hours 28 min ago
You might not be able to find your favorite UK chocolate imports any more… Hershey representative Jeff Beckman said these products were not intended for sale in the United States and companies importing the products were infringing on its trademark and trade dress licensing. “It is important for Hershey to protect its trademark rights and […]
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

side of the road, lima

Chester County Ramblings - Fri, 2015-01-23 22:35


Categories: Pennsylvania

Crazed Tyrant Tom Wolf Wants to Appoint Agency Heads Who Agree With Him

Keystone Politics - Fri, 2015-01-23 10:49
The way “Governor” works is that, to fulfill the agenda you laid out in your campaign, you appoint a bunch of people to the various executive branch agencies who agree with that agenda,...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

The 67 District Plan for Repairing PA’s School Tax Bases

Keystone Politics - Fri, 2015-01-23 10:32
The state funding cuts are still the biggest problem facing local school districts but the second biggest problem many are having is that they are too small. In the city centers and first ring...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

PPP: Toomey Approval Rating Only 28%

Keystone Politics - Fri, 2015-01-23 10:09
Rightwing Senator Pat Toomey manages to out-poll all the Democrats at this time, according to PPP’s first 2016 poll, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t vulnerable in 2016. Check out...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

The Daily Numbers for Friday, Jan. 23

Heron's Nest - Fri, 2015-01-23 07:38
The Daily Numbers: 125 members of the Rose Tree Media Education Association who picketed yesterday outside the Media Courthouse in their pursuit of a new contract.

2 year contract freeze agreed to by the union in their last deal, which expired last June.

42 years after Roe v. Wade, marchers again took to Washington, D.C., yesterday to protest the ruling in the annual March for Life.

200 Delaware County residents who made the trek to take part in the rally.

76, age of Marple resident Harold Sampson, who will celebrate his birthday today by walking to the 76ers game from his home.

19-38 months in prison for Philly man who robbed an Upper Darby bank to fund his lottery ticket addiction.

1-3 inches of snow expected tonight into Saturday before it all changes over to rain. Sounds like a mess.

1 person killed when he was struck by 4 cars as he tried to cross I-495 in Delaware last night. None of the drivers stopped.

46 million dollar bailout for the casinos in Delaware given the initial OK yesterday.

20 million dollars believed scammed by a prominent Bucks County family, according to charges filed yesterday.

3 fires in 5 years at their estate that authorities allege were intentionally set.

1.2 million dollars claimed for the loss of drapes in the fire.

2.8 million spent on 6 Ferraris, 2 Rolls-Royces and 4 other cars.

47-46 win for Penn Wood over Chester High last night.

Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.

Some people wouldn’t go to a Sixers game if you gave them tickets. Harold Sampson plans to walk from his Marple home to the Wells Fargo Center to celebrate his 76th birthday. Gotta love that!

I Don’t Get It: So much for an end to partisan politics in Harrisburg. New Gov. Tom Wolf yesterday axed the last-minute appointments put in place by Tom Corbett, including Erik Arneson as the state’s chief open records official.

Today’s Upper: Kudos to Harold Sampson. You’re the man, pal.

Quote Box: “The honeymoon is over. He is not off to a flying start for someone who said he was going to do things differently.”

- State Sen. Majority Leader Jake Corman, R-Centre, of Gov. Wolf’s actions.

Categories: Pennsylvania

Just call him Mr. 76-er

Heron's Nest - Fri, 2015-01-23 06:52
This is without question my favorite story of the day.

Meet Harold Sampson.

The Marple man turns 76 today. He also just happens to be a lifelong 76ers fans.

So to celebrate the occasion, the spry septuagenarian will walk from his Marple home to the Wells Fargo Center in South Philly for tonight’s Sixers match vs. the Toronto Raptors. He also will be honored by the team during the game.

You're the man, Harold!
Categories: Pennsylvania

In praise of Cecily Tynan

Heron's Nest - Fri, 2015-01-23 06:41
I think it's fair to say I'm not a big fan of the way local TV handles the weather.

About the only thing left for them to do is link Tom Brady and Bill Belichick to our next winter storm.

Speaking of which, all that "double-scan," Doppler and First Alert technology tells us that a messy mix of winter weather is going to arrive tonight and strech into Saturday.

So expect non-stop hyperventilating on the local stations today. There will be no news. There will only be weather.

That's why I was a bit taken aback by something that happened yesterday.

Look, I am more than willing to rip the TV forecasters most days, so today I have to be fair and praise one of them. I'm speaking of Cecily Tynan, the lead meteorologist on 6-ABC.

Tynan went out of her way yesterday to point out this was NOT going to be a major snowstorm. She was on social media telling people that if they wanted to see lots of snow, they were going to be disappointed in this storm.

Here are some of her Tweets:

"If you are hoping for a big snowstorm then Saturday's nor'easter is not the answer. Best bet for Philly Metro, 1"-3"."

*

"You will need to be in the Lehigh Valley to see all snow on Saturday. I-95 will quickly transition to rain. #6abcSnow."

Bravo, Cecily!
Categories: Pennsylvania

malvern borough wakes up to historic preservation

Chester County Ramblings - Thu, 2015-01-22 18:08

Malvern Borough has woken up to the real concept of historic preservation.

That’s the good news.

The bad news is will it do any good?

I am a huge believer in historic preservation, do not misunderstand me. It’s just that I have seen too many fights to try to save too many historic properties which have failed. And they have failed not because there wasn’t interest in historic preservation, they failed because zoning on local and county levels were inadequate and hamstrung because as I have said for years, at the state level, the Municipalities Planning Code of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is woefully out of date, isn’t it?

Pennsylvania is a private property rights state. It is also a state with some powerful building, developer, construction lobbyists up in Harrisburg. A few short years ago for brief shining moment there was a proposed law on the books that would allow municipalities to an act a short-term moratorium on development. It was HB904 during 2007 and 2008. It has long since disappeared like it was never even a concept which existed .

A famous recent example of what could not be saved of historic import was La Ronda. It was demolished in 2009.

La Ronda was in Lower Merion Township where I used to live. Innumerable people locally,regionally, and nationally worked with politicians in Lower Merion to try to save the historic Spanish Gothic mansion. I photographed the last few months of the mansion from outside it’s gates and the October 1, 2009 demolition day.

My point is this: Lower Merion is a very powerful municipality. They have a very organized historical architectural review board or “HARB” and historical society and STILL more is lost than is saved. I’ve observed similar situations in Radnor Township. Not trying to be Debbie Downer on this because I applaud Malvern Borough for finally trying to put mechanisms in place, but in the end will it do anything if local municipalities don’t lobby there state elected officials to update what needs updating in Harrisburg as well?

I also in the past worked to put a former neighborhood into a historic district. I’m still waiting and trying to figure out what it actually does to help in the end because since I moved away from this neighborhood there’s just been more development and I haven’t seen or heard of any active preservation.

Again, I am not against historic preservation, I am very much in favor of it. But historic preservation needs to have MORE things on a state level to back it up. And it has always been my belief that in addition to fabulous things like Preservation PA, there needs to be an update to the municipalities planning code because that is the state bible that drives local zoning ordinances, correct?

A more holistic approach is needed so local municipalities from the tiniest of boroughs to the largest of cities have more tools in there tool box to help them preserve their communities historically and in general.

I’m glad Malvern is taking these steps, but I also wonder if they will actually have enforceability with what they want to do? Or if one good Municipal Court challenge by someone will knock it out? What is Malvern Borough doing NOW about the properties which you would think were historic but seem to be falling apart?

Malvern Borough Solicitor Wendy McLean was quoted as saying “This is a much less obtrusive ordinance than most” and supposedly those who didn’t follow the ordinance if enacted would be subject to fines equal to a property’s market value? I just don’t see how they would be able enforce something like that. Maybe they could but is there case law on this before they go forward and spend taxpayer money to enact an ordinance like this? I get it, Malvern Borough is a small municipality finally trying to preserve its character. But if they don’t enact ordinances that they can’t defend in court they could possibly bankrupt themselves in legal fees couldn’t they?

What I don’t see in the media coverage is if Malvern Borough’s solicitor also went over similar ordinances in other communities? I agree Malvern has to begin somewhere, it’s just from reading through the ordinance I just can’t see a developer not being able to knock holes in it as it stands right now. And what will this ordinance do for all the structures in the borough which are currently “demolition by neglect”? How will they handle people who wish to be grandfathered from the ordinance?

Here is the language of what is being proposed – it can be found on Malvern Borough’s website, just CLICK HERE.

And if you are into historic preservation you should also check out “Pennsylvania at Risk”

Here is the news on this:

Malvern wants to protect historic properties Michaelle Bond, Inquirer Staff Writer Last updated: Wednesday, January 21, 2015, 1:08 AM


Malvern, which celebrated its 125th anniversary last year, wants to add an extra step to its building-permit process to preserve historical properties.

The borough is considering a process to review all proposals to significantly alter or demolish historic properties or resources. Officials would work with property owners to try to preserve that which makes the structures historical.

According to a proposed ordinance that would create a Historical Overlay District, the protection of about 250 primarily residential structures is a matter of “public necessity.”

“We have a handful of them that were around during the Revolutionary War,” said Zeyn Uzman, chair of the borough’s Historical Commission. “Unfortunately, one of them will probably be torn down in the next six months.”

Uzman explained the potential ordinance to about 70 residents at a meeting Tuesday night at a church.

A developer plans to build residential units at the site of a house on Old Lincoln Highway that dates to the 1780s. The Historical Commission estimates that the house is the second- or third-oldest structure in Malvern.

The ordinance, which must be approved by the borough council, cannot protect properties from being demolished, but it would allow the borough to preserve the history of those places, Uzman said.

“If we’re going to lose a structure, we at least want to go in there and take pictures and document as much as we can,” he said. Currently, borough officials are not permitted to enter someone’s residence to document it.


Categories: Pennsylvania

Yo Tom Wolf: Fix the State Assessment Law

Keystone Politics - Thu, 2015-01-22 11:04
The only reason you’re seeing this spot assessment wave is that the state of Pennsylvania doesn’t require all counties to reassess properties on a regular and predictable schedule. County...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

Security fencing for Valley Forge Middle School, TE Middle School and Conestoga High School – TE School District seeks variance to construct 6-foot fence

During 2014, 5-foot high chain link fencing was installed around TESD’s five elementary schools – Beaumont, New Eagle, Valley Forge, Hillside and Devon. Sandy Hook and other school shootings pushed the issue of school security into the limelight and the elementary school fencing project was one of the security upgrades recommended by the District’s Safety […]
Categories: Pennsylvania

Daily Numbers for Thursday, Jan. 22

Heron's Nest - Thu, 2015-01-22 07:32
The Daily Numbers: 22 people charged in statewide oxycodone drug ring that law enforcement officials said used bogus prescriptions to get the powerful painkillers.

2 of those from Delaware County, including the suspected ringleader, who is from Upper Chi.

59,000 oxycodone pills gotten by the ring through the bogus prescriptions, cops say.

1.9 million dollar profit for the drug ring.

1-3 inches of snow that for the most part failed to show up yesterday afternoon, despite all those dire forecasts.

14 overdose deaths in the county that have been prevented by police administering the drug Narcan, according to D.A. Jack Whelan.

7 weeks since David’s Law went into effect, allowing the drug to be administered by cops.

37 months in prison for Delco defense contractor Kenneth Narzikul.

1.2 million dollars, how much the government believes they were cheated out of by the businessman.

36, age of Radnor Officer James Gallagher, who is being credited with saving the life of a baby during that deadly icy crash on the Blue Route Sunday morning.

5 counts on which former popular TV sports guy Don Tollefson was convicted of in Bucks County yesterday.

350,000 dollars cash bail, actually $35,000 (10 percent) in cash, what Tolly needs to get out of the slammer.

37 years in prison, maximum sentence he faces.

6-8 months in prison, the plea deal that he turned down before deciding to go to trial.

27 points for Carmelo Anthony to lead the Knicks over the 76ers in a clash of the Titans at the Wells Fargo Center last night.

16-game losing streak snapped by the New Yorkers the night before.

2-game winning streak for the Knicks.

Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.

The worst team in the NBA showed up at the Wells Fargo Center last night. And won. Thanks, Sixers.

I Don’t Get It: Bill Belichick. I don’t get it.

Today’s Upper: Kudos to Radnor Officer James Gallagher, who is being credited with saving the life of a baby during that deadly crash on an icy Blue Route Sunday morning.

Quote Box: “In the seven weeks since police in Delaware County have been equipped with Naloxone, or Narcan, 14 overdose victims have been revived.”

- Delco D.A. Jack Whelan, on use of Narcan.
Categories: Pennsylvania

A not-so-Super start to the party, courtesy of Bill Belichick

Heron's Nest - Thu, 2015-01-22 06:42
Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots have done something I did not think was possible.

They've put an ugly splotch on one of the truly great sports days of the year.

Super Sunday is more than a football game. It now borders on a national holiday, with friends, family and others wolfing down insane amounts of food and drink in all manner of settings, all focused on the two best teams in the NFL facing off in the league's championship game.

Sure, the game itself often is less than 'super.' And there is something that has always been somewhat haughty in that name. But for many fans, it's never really been about the game. It's been about the party.

Now, thanks to the Patriots, it's no longer game. Or the party. It's about them, and what lengths they will go to win.

The Patriots are being investigated by the league for allegations that they used balls that were intentionally under-inflated in their lopsided win over the Colts in the AFC Championship game.

The belief is that a ball will less air in it is easier to handle, in other words throw and catch.

It likely had little or no effect on the 45-7 whipping the Pats laid on Andrew Luck and the Colts.

That's not the point.

This is not Belichick's first waltz down this path. In 2007, he was fined $500,000 and the team fined $250,000 and stripped of a first-round draft pick after they were caught taping the Jets signals during a game.

It got a lot of people - and a lot of Eagles fans still nursing the wounds of a Super Bowl loss to the Patriots - to wonder if things were always on the up and up.

It's hard to tell with Belichick, such is his zeal for pushing the rules to the edge. For years he would play fast and loose with the mandated league injury reports, often listing QB Tom Brady as 'probable.' He routinely signs players who are cut by teams he will face. So far, neither Belichick nor the Patriots have commented on the latest scandal. The coach is expected to meet the media today.

I certainly do not expect anyone to be suspended for the Super Bowl over this kerfuffle. The Seahawks certainly don't want to possibly see their push for a second straight Super Bowl crown tainted by playing a team not at their best.

Next year? Who knows, maybe a fine or a suspension.

I don't expect Belichick to change. That arrogance is part of what makes him the best coach in the NFL. But you have to wonder how long the league will allow him to bend the rules to his advantage. Especially when it starts to stain their premier event.

There is one other thing Belichick has done this week that I didn't think was possible. I've never much liked the Seahawks and their brash, trash-talking way of doing things.

Belichick just made me their biggest fan.
Categories: Pennsylvania

Another snow job

Heron's Nest - Thu, 2015-01-22 05:07
Do not turn on your TV. Ignore the radio.

Here is everything you will need to know about your morning commute. Don't forget to brush off your car windows.

In other words, all that talk about yesterday's snow storm and the possibility of 1-3 inches of flakes? Forget it. Didn't happen. At least not around here.

Of course, that did not stop lots of local schools from letting out two hours early, and the general panic that sets in every time someone mentions the dreaded four-letter winter word that starts with an s, not an f.

I did encounter a bit of snow on my own street in my development. And there was one side road that had a bit of mush on it. But once out on the main roads, all I saw was some wet surfaces. And even though temperatures were below freezing, I did not encounter any ice or even any slick spots.

That isn't going to change the way the local media handles the weather. The threat of snow will provoke non-stop hyperventilating by our friends on TV. Yesterday, on the noon and 4 o'clock broadcasts, there was no news. There was only weather.

Correspondents were dispatched near and far in an attempt to detail how bad it was. The problem was that all of them were standing next to roads that were only wet, not snow-covered. So most of them simply improvised and showed the light snow that had covered the grass, and also talked to people about how they were preparing for the 'storm.'

Not sure you need double-screen radar for that, but what do I know?

There is something else at work here. I think a part of this is a reaction to the missed forecast on Sunday morning, when what was expected to be a daylong rain showed up earlier than expected, along with temperatures that were colder than expected. The combination turned roads into ice rinks and resulted in several deadly crashes.

Here is what I know. Today is Jan. 22, the dead of winter. It is cold around here in the winter. And it snows from time to time. That is not necessarily news. But it will not stop our fascination with weather.

Oh, and one other thing. They are now calling for another storm, packing rain and snow, for Saturday.

Stay tuned.

Here's the latest forecast.
Categories: Pennsylvania

owl

Chester County Ramblings - Wed, 2015-01-21 18:44

I can’t take credit for photographing this owl. Someone sent me his picture he was in their woods in Delaware. He’s beautiful.


Categories: Pennsylvania

The Daily Numbers for Wednesday, Jan. 21

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2015-01-21 07:59
The Daily Numbers: 4, age of Brookhaven boy whose specialized, motorized wheelchair was stolen from the driveway of his home. Police have a suspect. Just heartless.

47th governor of Pennsylvania Tom Wolf.

6th State of Union Address offered by President Barack Obama.

220 pounds of pot that police say was distributed by a Villanova man as part of a marijuana empire.

5 years and 3 months in the slammer for Ronald Belciano in connection with the drug charges.

5 counties, including Delco, where police say 2 brothers from Gilbertsville pulled off a series of sewer grate thefts. They were selling them for scrap.

29, age of Delaware mom who police say left her baby in a cab while she went inside to hold up a convenience store.

3 men who face heroin sales charges in Upper Darby.

2 men arrested following a police chase through Aldan and Collingdale.

30 foot long Stoney Creek Bridge on Kedron Avenue that will be rebuilt.

3 years probation for a former Lafayette College student tied to Main Line preppy pot ring.

24 townhomes on a former cemetery property that got the OK in Upper Darby.

31, age of man who entered an open guilty plea after an altercation with police in Upper Darby.

28 percent tax hit on those making more than $500,000, what President Obama wants.

500 dollar tax credit for families where both spouses work and have income up to $210,000.

2 years of free community college.

500,000 bail for New Jersey mom charged with fatally setting her baby on fire.

100 dollars a ticket, what it cost to get into the Wolf Inaugural party in Hershey last night.

3-2 overtime win for the Flyers in fight-filled game vs. the Penguins.

210 million dollar, 7 year deal inked by pitcher Max Scherzer with the Nationals.

11 balls reported to be under-inflated as the NFL probes Patriots again.

Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.

Nothing like a little old-time hockey at the Wells Fargo Center, eh?

I Don’t Get It: How could you swipe a wheelchair from someone’s driveway? I don’t get it.

Today’s Upper: Kudos to the Chester Children’s Chorus, which had a moment in the spotlight performing yesterday at the inauguration of Gov. Tom Wolf.

Quote Box: “I am an unconventional leader.”

- New Pa. Gov. Tom Wolf.
Categories: Pennsylvania

Here's your early morning winter roads report for Wednesday

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2015-01-21 05:20
First the good news.

The drive into work should be fine.

Now the bad news.

The commute home may be an adventure.

Despite temperatures below freezing and what first appeared to be a sheen on the roads as I stepped out the door, I did not encounter any real icing or even much in the way of slick spots during my early-morning commute.

Of course the first thing I had to do was chip away at the heavy coat of frost that caked all the windows.

But once tucked safely inside, the drive into the office was pretty much as normal.

West Chester Pike and the Route 1 Media Bypass were fine. Same goes for Springfield Road.

This afternoon sounds like it will be a tad bit more challenging.

We're expecting snow to move in later this afternoon and give us anywhere from 1-3 inches. The problem with this storm is that it sounds like it is going to arrive just in time for the evening rush hour. Hopefully, it will hold out until kids are safely home from school.

Here is the latest forecast.
Categories: Pennsylvania

all about the pot pie

Chester County Ramblings - Tue, 2015-01-20 19:21

Yes yes…continuing my quest to get vegetables into a teenager.

I make pot pies all the time. They aren’t that complicated. It’s basically meat, vegetables, gravy and the crust. Today I just didn’t feel like doing a double crust and a pie pan, so I opted for the crust on top kind of pot pie. A biscuit topping.

Preheat your oven to 350°.

First I made the filling. I used leftover roast beef that I had cubed into bite-size pieces and frozen for just this purpose. I would say probably about 2 1/2 cups was what was in the bag. I had let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

I also used a container of leftover beef au jus I had made with mushrooms. This has been in the freezer in a container as well. I let that also thaw overnight in the refrigerator.That was also about 2 cups. I turned that into a traditional gravy after creating a rue with a little bit of flour and maybe 2 tablespoons of butter in the bottom of the pan.

As for vegetables it was a combination of fresh and frozen. One cup each frozen peas and corn thawed, one sweet onion diced, three smaller but not mini carrots diced small, and a handful of fingerling potatoes sliced thin. (You may wish to slightly parboil potatoes first. )

I mixed that together with a little salt and pepper to taste, paprika, garlic powder and rosemary, and put into a good-sized baking dish that I had greased- a 12″ x 9″ baking dish that is a little over 3 inches deep.

The biscuit topping was really simple. Get out another mixing bowl.

One cup of buttermilk, 1 1/2 cup plus 4 tablespoons of flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 generous teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 cup melted butter, a 1/4 cup of grated Italian blend cheese out of the shaker (Parmesan and Romano blend), and fresh ground pepper.

Mix biscuit ingredients all together and it will be goopy and not the kind of biscuit dough you roll out. Put it on the top of your pot pie mixture in your baking pan evenly. Bake at 350° for 45 to 55 minutes depending on your oven.

Allow to cool slightly when you remove it from the oven because it will be really hot.

Enjoy!


Categories: Pennsylvania

The Daily Numbers for Tuesday, Jan. 20

Heron's Nest - Tue, 2015-01-20 07:40
The Daily Numbers: 300 people who took part in the ‘Pieces of Peace’ activities to mark the MLK holiday in Chester.

1,500 people who took to the streets in Philly in a march to focus on the recent deaths of 2 black men at the hands of police.

135 kids from Chester who make up the Chester Children’s Chours. They will perform today at the inauguration of Tom Wolf as governor of Pa. in Harrisburg.

47th governor, take a bow, Tom Wolf. Now get to work.

2 billion dollar budget gap that will greet Wolf when he reports for work tomorrow.

69th Street movie complex that is being converted into one of those dinner and a movie joints.

1.5 million dollars in renovations that will be sunk into the 32,000 square foot venue.

100 percent occupancy in the 69th Street Shopping District once the movie complex opens in April.

21 people who made comments at the recent public hearing on the proposals for Springfield High School.

4 February, when the school board will get down to the key topic in the discussion - how much are all these plans expected to cost?

29 of January, when Aston will hold a public hearing on the expansion plan filed by the Delaware County Intermediate Unit for their campus on Crozerville Road.

17 residents chased from their South Philly homes overnight by a gas leak.

50 percent approval rating for President Obama as he prepares to deliver his 6th State of the Union Address tonight.

4 as in No. 4 team in the nation for the Villanova Wildcats in yesterday’s latest AP college hoops poll.

78-58 drubbing for the Wildcats just a few hours later at the hands of Georgetown.

7-4 ugly loss for the Flyers to the Islanders yesterday.

111-76 loss for the Sixers at the hands of the Wizards.

Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.

The NFL is looking into whether or not the Patriots may have deflated the balls used in their big win over Colts on Sunday in an attempt to get an advantage. The Patriots won, 45-7. Yep, the balls were the key to the game.

I Don’t Get It: It’s expected to snow a bit Wedneday afternoon. All other news will soon cease. I don’t get it.

Today’s Upper: Kudos to the Chester Children’s Chorus. They’re set to perform today at the inauguration of Tom Wolf in Harrisburg.

Quote Box: “I’d never been on a scene like that. It was the worst experience.”

- Joe Bardroff, who witnessed the horror that played out on icy Blue Route Sunday morning.
Categories: Pennsylvania