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There is always a Delco connection

Heron's Nest - Thu, 2016-07-14 06:22
It is one of the things I am always stressing to my staff.

Any time there is a big national story, I always stress to them to be alert for a local angle. Inevitably, the story works its way back to Delaware County.

It happened again this week, with tragic results.

I didn't really think of it the first time I heard the incredible story of the woman who fell 400 feet to her death from a trail at the Grand Canyon.

My initial interest in the story was purely personal. I've been on some of the trails, and I always marveled at how easy it would be to topple off the side.

It did not take long for the story to hit home - literally here in Delco.

Colleen Burns was a Delco native, she grew up in Morton and was a graduate of Cardinal O'Hara High School.

She moved to Orlando a few years ago, where she was a Yelp executive.

She was just 35.

Staff writer Patti Mengers got the task of tracking down those who knew and loved Burns for their reaction to this incredibly sad story.

It did not take long.

You can read Patti's story here.
Categories: Pennsylvania

This is what compromise looks like

Heron's Nest - Thu, 2016-07-14 06:11
There's an odd word being bandied about in Harrisburg.

Compromise.

Yes, miracles do happen. And it doesn't always take nine months to put them in place.

In other words, our elected representatives signed off Wednesday on a new state budget - nine months before they were able to accomplish that seemingly routine task last year.

The $31 billion spending plan is not what everyone wanted. That's where the compromise part comes in.

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf did not get all the spending - nor the tax hikes to pay for it - that he wanted.

But he is getting an additional $200 million in education spending.

Republicans in the House and Senate managed to avoid the dreaded broad-based tax hike, including any increase in the state sales or personal income taxes, as well as again beating back calls for a severance tax on natural gas drilling in the state.

Of course, someone has to pay, and if you're a smoker, the Legislature has just given you another reason to consider kicking the habit.

Yes, tobacco taxes are going up again, this time a dollar a pack. That takes the tax on a pack of cigarettes $1.60 to $2.60, a move expected to raise $430 million. I don't even want to think about what this will mean for the price of a carton of cigarettes. My mind already reels when I'm in line at the Wawa and the person in front of my buys a carton. Pretty soon they will need to take out a mortgage to bankroll their habit.

Electronic cigarettes also are getting hit, along with digital downloads, which will now be subject to the state sales tax. That move will raise antoher $47 million.

A push for online gambling has been delayed in the fall. When it arrives, it will deliver another $100 million.

The move already approved to allow supermarkets to sell wine will bring in another $149 million.

There's a laundry list of other revenue drivers in the budget.

You can check them out here.

Nobody wanted another nine-month standoff.

At the same time, it can probably be said nobody is entirely happy with this spending plan, nor the funding mechanisms.

That's called compromise.

What a concept.
Categories: Pennsylvania

Is there anything better than a summer thunder & lightning storm?

Heron's Nest - Thu, 2016-07-14 05:50
It is one of my favorite aspects of summer.

There is something incredibly soothing about lying in bed on a steamy summer night as Mother Nature provides her own fireworks show via a thunderstorm.

Of course, when I was a kid, you would lay in bed with the windows open and get the full effect of the storm, with flashes of lightning lighting up the room for a split second, then returning you to darkness as the rain pounded down. And yes, I used to count from the time you saw the lightning to the follow-up boom of thunder. The saying was that was how many miles away the lightning struck.

Today, despite my protests, my wife prefers air-conditioning to such sweltering summer delights.

The drive in this morning also was a bit of a show, with an occasional lightning strike illuminating the early-morning darkness.

I can live without the rain, but the show is worth the bother.

Looks like we better get used to these soupy conditions.

For most people, this is the bane of summer. Not me. I love it. The hotter, the stickier, the better I like it. I saw on the front porch last night when you could literally see the steam rising from the wet ground after another downpour.

The only thing missing was the lack of a Phillies game for the radio.

We're under a heat advisory starting this afternoon and right through Thursday night. They tell me the "real-feel" temperature will be in triple digits. Some day maybe someone will explain to me just what a "real-feel" temperature is. Probably right after I locate those mythical "northern and western suburbs."

Heat? Humidity? Bring it on.

Check out the full weather report here.
Categories: Pennsylvania

New to the Market: Home Listings in and around Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Wed, 2016-07-13 20:00
Looking for a new home? Or do you just like looking at what homes are on the market? Either way, here are the latest homes for sale in and around Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood...
Categories: Lower Merion

PA Lawmakers Reach Budget Deal; Gov. Says He Will Sign

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Wed, 2016-07-13 17:23
Pennsylvania lawmakers have finalized a budget for 2016-2017, the governor confirmed Wednesday
Categories: Lower Merion

'Rookie' the Lower Merion police K9 receives protective vest

Main Line Times - Wed, 2016-07-13 16:20
From a press release Lower Merion Township Police Department’s K9 “Rookie” has received a bullet- and stab-protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from the non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. K9 Rookie’s vest was sponsored through a fundraiser hosted by the Staten Island Companion Dog Training Club and embroidered with the sentiment “Donated by SICDTC, Staten Island, NY.”
Categories: Lower Merion

Gladwyne Montessori seeking to expand campus

Main Line Times - Wed, 2016-07-13 16:08
Gladwyne Montessori School in Gladwyne has begun outlining an expansion plan that will include combining some of the nearby homes the school has been purchasing over the past several years.
Categories: Lower Merion

Bala Cynwyd doctor charged with improperly touching patient

Main Line Times - Wed, 2016-07-13 15:36
Lower Merion >> After a preliminary hearing Wednesday, a district justice found that there was enough evidence against a Bala Cynwyd doctor accused of improperly touching a patient to send the case to Common Pleas Court.
Categories: Lower Merion

Reward Offered For Gray Kitten, 'Mini-Me', Lost in Lower Merion

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Wed, 2016-07-13 15:22
No photo is available of the seven-month-old kitten "Mini-Me," who has been reported lost in Lower Merion. Details are in the story.
Categories: Lower Merion

Merck To Shut Down Montgomery County Research Facility, Cut 360 Jobs

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Wed, 2016-07-13 14:22
Merck is cutting 360 jobs across the company.
Categories: Lower Merion

MISSING: Lower Merion Cat 'Sweet Gentle Soul'

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Wed, 2016-07-13 13:02
Have you seen this cat in the Lower Merion area?
Categories: Lower Merion

Roofer's Death Prompts OSHA Crackdown In Philly Area

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Wed, 2016-07-13 12:14
After 5 incidents in the past month that resulted in death or injury of workers in the Philadelphia region, OSHA says it's cracking down.
Categories: Lower Merion

an amazing experience

Chester County Ramblings - Wed, 2016-07-13 11:14

Yesterday, I had the privilege of visiting a Duffy’s Cut archaeological dig site thanks to Dr. William Watson of Immaculata. This is my second Duffy’s Cut tour thanks to the good doctor.

I also had the opportunity to meet his team, his brother, and the  teachers attending the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)  Duffy’s Cut Teachers Institute. Everyone was so warm and welcoming to a non-educator.

I have always wanted to see what an archaeological dig was like in real time, so I found it all fascinating!

Thanks Bill for including me!!!

Here is the PBS video of a few years ago. I have watched it a few time now and it still gets me every time – really powerful stuff:



Categories: Pennsylvania

warren and second, malvern borough (sad)

Chester County Ramblings - Wed, 2016-07-13 10:30

This was Gables Greenhouse that is now owned by TAG and will be four MASSIVE houses…photo courtesy of Alicia Marziani

More photos which occurred during demolition and note they barely left a blade of grass or even a humble weed intact:

 

photo courtesy of Alicia Marziani


Categories: Pennsylvania

An odd twist to the 168th special election

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2016-07-13 06:12
Here's maybe the least surprising news of the day.

Republican Chris Quinn has won the special election to succeed Tom Killion in the state House 168th race.

After all, no Democrat has ever held the seat.

Quinn easily outdistanced Democrat Diane Cornman-Levy.

But here's maybe the most delicious part of the story, at least for political buffs. Yes, I can admit I belong to that group.

This special election was held in the middle of summer, with lots of people on vacation, who are not exactly thinking about politics, despite the fact that our other duly elected representatives in Harrisburg have managed to pass a budget - but not a funding mechanism to pay for it.

This kind of special election is all about turnout, since there is nothing else to draw voters to the polls. Unfortunately, that's just political reality. You would think that voters would take their most basic constitutional right more seriously, but given the choice of that and sitting on the beach, you get three guesses who wins that battle. Shore enough!

As expected, turnout was dismal. Only about 20 percent of those eligible made it to the polls. Initial figures show Quinn with 5,329 votes to just 3,788 for Cornman-Levy. While Democrats now outnumber Republicans countywide, the GOP still holds a 51-36 registration edge in the 168th. That proved too much for Cornman-Levy and local Dems to overcome. David Landau and Delco Democrats pointed to the recent win by Leanne Krueger-Braneky in the 161st state House race as progress, but they still face challenges in many areas, including an inability to capture any countywide races.

But keep in mind that this election was only to fill the remainder of Killion's term in the House. Tom, of course, has now moved to a desk in the Pennsylvania Senate, filling the 9th District seat vacated by Dominic Pileggi, who in turn won a seat on the Delaware County Court of Common Pleas.

Quinn and Cornman-Levy will have a rematch in just a few months, and I am wondering if the outcome might be different.

Keep in mind that the November ballot will be highlighted by a red-hot presidential race pitting Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump.

With a woman at the top of the ticket, and with Democrats already on a long roll in both Delco and Pennsylvania in presidential racers, could Hillary's coattails lift Cornman-Levy?

How odd would it be for Quinn to win this special election only to be dumped in favor of the Democrat Cornman-Levy in the fall.

Keep an eye on this one.
Categories: Pennsylvania

Just Listed: Homes for Sale in and around Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Tue, 2016-07-12 20:00
Patch brings you newly listed homes on the market. Check out the latest homes for sale in and around Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood...
Categories: Lower Merion

Montco K9 Dog Gets Body Armor, Thanks To Generous Donation

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Tue, 2016-07-12 16:26
It's the second K9 dog with the local police department to be outfitted with body armor thanks to a generous donation.
Categories: Lower Merion

Lower Merion K9 Dog 'Rookie' Gets Body Armor Via Donation

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Tue, 2016-07-12 16:00
It's the second K9 dog with Lower Merion police to be outfitted with body armor thanks to a generous donation.
Categories: Lower Merion

'Rookie' the Lower Merion police K9 receives protective vest

Main Line Times - Tue, 2016-07-12 15:27
From a press release Lower Merion Township Police Department’s K9 “Rookie” has received a bullet- and stab-protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from the non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. K9 Rookie’s vest was sponsored through a fundraiser hosted by the Staten Island Companion Dog Training Club and embroidered with the sentiment “Donated by SICDTC, Staten Island, NY.”
Categories: Lower Merion

Beloved Ardmore Woman, 86, Passes Away

Ardmore-Merion-Wynnewood Patch - Tue, 2016-07-12 13:29
May she rest in peace.
Categories: Lower Merion