From The Wednesday, Jan. 19, 1994 Edition Of The Press And Journal
Local Companies Fighting Recession, Still Treating Customers As Number 1
If you think you’ve been having a tough go of it lately, managing a household during our country’s latest economic recession, imagine what it must be like to run a business – and to keep your head above water while doing so.
While most of the following business owners and managers express optimism about profit and sales in 1994, they prove that nurturing a positive outlook and gritty determination factor as strongly as luck in the road to success – along with treating customers right.
Service is Everything: Middletown is the home base of Fox’s Markets, which also houses stores in Hershey, the Point Mall and Cedar Cliff. The store’s edge against larger supermarket chains appears to be a friendly, personal attitude that its staff transmits toward customers. “We offer good service, quality and freshness,” described Bill Fox, president of Fox’s Markets.
Chuck Kray, part owner and president of Rhoads’ Pharmacies, echoes Fox’s thoughts about providing quality and personal service to customers as a cutting edge against larger competitors. “Some people might only be price conscious, but we will not compromise our service,” he said. Like many larger drug stores and supermarkets, the stores now carry a generic-type line of products to compete against higher-priced name brands.
Tight Economy Beneficial?: In some ways a tight economy can be beneficial for Carter Lumber Elizabethtown, according to Jeff Flowers, the 12-year store manager. “There is an increase in business when the economy gets tight,” he noted. “We have a lot more do-it-yourselfers who come to buy supplies.” Carter has only one local competitor, which helps business. It also hasn’t hurt that during the past two or three years, 500 new homes have been built within a two-mile radius of the store.
Borough Offer Rejected Jan. 5 M-town, Union Still Negotiating
The current contract expired Oct. 1. However, some three and one-half months later, a new contract reportedly has yet to be ironed out between non-uniform personnel and Middletown Borough.
“We have had a number of negotiating sessions where no agreement was reached. Things are now currently in mediation,” said Kathryn Speaker MacNett, the Borough’s legal representative in this matter.
MacNett, of a Harrisburg law firm, explained that mediation is the customary next level in any negotiating process when, after a given timetable, no agreement has been reached.
Until a settlement is reached, the non-uniform employees are working under an extension of the three-year contract that expired Oct. 1, that being agreed to by both parties, said MacNett.
According to Borough officials, the employees, who are represented by the Teamsters, rejected an offer put forth by the Borough at a meeting on Jan. 5. That rejection left some on the offering side disappointed.
“Quite candidly, I believe the Borough put its best offer forward and I’m a little disheartened by the rejection,” said Council President Barbara Layne. “I think the benefit package they (the employees) currently have is a very good one, and based on existing economic conditions, I feel the offer we’ve made is the best that can be made.”
Stressing that details of the offer cannot be discussed at this time, Layne did state that the Borough is not asking for any concessions.
“We’re not taking back anything. We’re simply attempting to be fiscally responsible, to hold the line,” Layne said.
Retired Highspire Councilwoman Once Served As Steel-High Nurse
She served 32 years as a school nurse in the Steelton-Highspire School District and another 20 years as a member of Highspire Borough Council. And, as if that weren’t enough, she candidly admits she’d do it all over again, if she had the chance.
“I really mean it,” Joanne Kern declares. “I have no regrets. I enjoyed what I did and the people I met in each of my careers, if you can call them that. I think I’m very lucky to have known so many fine people. They made all my efforts worthwhile.”
She left hospital work in 1955 to take a school nursing position with the district. There she stayed for the next 32 years.
Nursing wasn’t Kern’s only undertaking. Thirteen years before she retired as a school nurse, she decided to get more involved in her community’s affairs. So she ran for a seat on Highspire Borough Council and won, becoming the first woman ever to serve on that panel.
Kern was elected to five successive terms on Council and, until she retired from the position at the end of last year, she had racked up a total of 20 years as a Councilwoman. And, as with her nursing career, she says she never regretted the time she gave to her community in that capacity. Even when, as happened on two occasions, she found herself the lone Republican on a Council dominated by Democrats.
“There were times it got a little rough,” Kern recalls, “but I stuck it out. It didn’t always make me popular, but I tried to do what I thought my supporters wanted. They always re-elected me, so I guess I did something right.”
Prices From 23 Years Ago
Lipton Onion Soup Mix 2 oz., 79¢
Broccoli Cuts 16 oz. bag, 99¢
Onion Pizza Rolls 2 ct., $1.49
Pillsbury Cake Mix 18.5 oz., box 79¢
Glad Sandwich Bags 150 ct., 99¢
Mild Provolone, $3.77/lb.
Quaker Oats 42 oz. pkg., $1.99
Grillmaster Franks 1 lb. pkg., 98¢
Suave Deodorant 1.75 oz., $1.29
Vibrance Shampoo 15 oz. btl., $2.79
Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 January 2017 14:00
Written by Press And Journal Staff
Free tax preparation for low- to moderate-income people and families will be offered at Middletown Public Library every Monday from 5:30 to 8 p.m. starting Jan. 30.
The service will continue to be offered on Monday nights at the library until April 17. People will be assisted first-come first-served by volunteers certified by the Internal Revenue Service.
Free tax preparation is available to those with an annual yearly income of $54,000 or less.
To have your taxes prepared at the library, you need to bring the following:
• Valid photo identification (driver’s license, military ID, etc.) for taxpayer and spouse.
• Original Social Security card or individual Taxpayer Identification Number for you, your spouse, your children, and other dependents included in your tax return.
• Your current IP PIN number issued by the IRS (if you have one).
• Copies of all year-end tax forms you have received in the mail.
• If you received health care from the marketplace, bring your 1095-A.
You should also bring the following if it is available:
• Previous year’s federal and state tax returns.
• If you want to have your refund deposited directly into your checking or savings account, bring a blank check or other documentation from your bank/credit union showing your account number and the routing transit number.
• If you expect to claim a credit for child or dependent care, bring the child care provider's address and Employer Identification Number or their Social Security number.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 January 2017 16:23
Written by Jason Maddux
For 19 years, Penn State Harrisburg and PenOwl Productions Theatre Company have collaborated to produce a dramatic presentation to commemorate the campus-wide celebration of the Dr. Martin Luther King national holiday.
Here is a synopsis of this year’s production, “Riveted”: Four African-American women work for the defense industries in World War II while working on their lives. Husbands must be cared for, children tended to, housework done, and the world protected. That doesn’t leave much time for personal reflection. Yet these women do, what women have always done, find a natural balance and form a bond of sisterhood.
The play was written by Dr. Dorothy E. King, Penn State Harrisburg assistant professor of sociology. Cassandra Porter heads the cast.
“Riveted” will be performed at noon Monday, Jan. 16 and 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 17 in the Capital Union Building of Penn State Harrisburg. It is free and open to the public.
For more information and to make a reservation, call 717-948-6300.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 January 2017 15:50
Written by Jason Maddux
From The Wednesday, Jan. 12, 1994 edition of the Press And Journal
Series Of Suspicious Fires Sparks Alarm, Anger
Twelve suspicious fires? All in Middletown’s First Ward? All since early October? It was not a subject on the night’s agenda. Rather it was expected to be a night of mostly ceremonious matters, going through, with pomp and proper protocol, the procedures required by state law on the first Monday of even-numbered years.
But shortly after Middletown Council re-organized, electing again as its president and vice president, Barbara Layne and Terry Seiders, five First Ward residents brought the curtain crashing down.
“We’re here to talk about the fires being set around our area,” said one resident who, along with several neighbors, attended Council’s January 3 re-organization meeting.
With Council sitting in seemingly stunned silence, the resident politely continued, “We’re living in fear,” she said. “We all feel like sitting ducks wondering whose house will be next. Let’s not keep this hush-hush. Let’s make people aware there’s an arsonist out there.”
According to the resident, at the scene of a fire a few blocks from her house on Jan.2 – a day when a total of four fire calls were received by Middletown’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) – a firefighter told her that he suspected it was an arson and that it was not the only one.
Eyes darting from the audience to fellow Council members, Layne exclaimed, “I want you and everyone else in this room to know that this is the first time I’ve heard this.”
In what appeared to be a search for someone to shed light on the issue, Layne looked at Mayor Robert Reid and then at Councilman George Elberti III, who is also an assistant fire marshal for the Borough.
Elberti, in an attempt to downplay the situation, simply said, yes a number of fires were under investigation by the State Police, and that no further details could be disclosed.
Layne said, “We’ll take every measure we can, through the press, to make people aware.”
Layne, Seiders Reappointed President, Vice-president of Middletown Council
On the first Monday of even-numbered years, state law requires local governing bodies to re-organize, to elect new officers to lead the body. On January 3, Middletown Council did just that, unanimously re-electing as its leaders, President Barbara Layne and Vice President Terry Seiders.
Both thanked fellow members for their support, but Layne went a step further, sharing with Council and those in the audience an acceptance speech she had prepared.
“When I became president in 1988, I stressed that this Council would go down in the annals of Middletown as one genuinely interested in what is best for the residents of this Borough. I strongly believe that we have been successful in accomplishing that – despite what some may say.”
With conviction in her voice, Layne read on, “I further made a plea for us to continue to improve the quality of life for our residents.”
As evidence of Council’s efforts toward that end and its ability to operate as a team, Layne read off the following accomplishments: the Woodlayne project; the Wilson St. Bridge project, where ground was broken in May, Layne noted; the new Giant going up at Mid-Town Plaza; and the placement of the town square project on PennDOT’s priority list.
“We have faced some very difficult issues over the past two years and will face more in the next two years.” Layne said in bringing her speech to an end, “May God grant us the strength and courage we need to move forward in these very difficult times.”
Familiar Faces Reappointed In Conoy Twp.
The Conoy Township Board of Supervisors met for its annual re-organizational meeting on Mon., Jan. 3, reappointing many longtime officials.
Once again, Stephen Mohr will serve as Board chairman and Earl Fuhrman as vice chairman. Board member Robert Strickland returns as secretary/treasurer, a post he has held for more than 30 years.
The Supervisors’ various responsibilities remain as follows: Mohr – recreation and buildings; Fuhrman – sewer, water, fire and roads; and Strickland – planning, zoning, emergency management and roads.
Also, Mohr was reappointed as dog officer and Fuhrman returns as Township road master.
Richard Boas was reappointed as Chief of Police. The Board announced that the police force remains under a three-year contract that was signed in 1993. Under the contract, Boas reportedly earns $30,500 annually and Officer Joe Good earns $26,500. The department’s two part-time officers earn a wage of $8.75 per hour.
The Board also voted to keep Marvin Stoner as sewer enforcement officer, Robert Brandt as zoning officer and Glenn Hipple as Vacancy Board chairman.
The Board gave its authorization for the Bainbridge Fire Department to carry out fundraising activities during the New Year. Officials also announced that the Township’s 1994 budget was passed at a Dec. 28 meeting. Revenues are expected to total $714,956 and expenditures are expected to be $641,605 leaving a surplus of more than $100,000.
Prices From 23 Years Ago
Wilson Lite Roast Beef, $3.99/lb.
Dannon Light Yogurt 8 oz., 59¢
Wheat Kaiser Rolls 6 ct., $1.29
Icy Point Pink Salmon 14.75 oz., 2/$3
Hills Bros. Coffee 12 oz. can, 99¢
Blueberry Pie 24 oz., $2.99
Page Paper Towels, 3 Rolls/$1
Wildberry Crème Cake, $2.58/each
Kraft Parmesan Cheese 8 oz., $3.20
Wesson Oil 48 oz. btl., $1.99
Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 January 2017 15:27
Written by Press And Journal Staff
From The Wednesday, Jan. 5, 1994 Edition Of The Press And Journal
Next Phase: Decommissioning In 2014 TMI’s Unit 2 Reactor Placed In Monitored Storage
It’s taken over 14 years of history-making cleanup, analysis and negotiations, but the damaged Unit 2 reactor at Three Mile Island has finally entered a stage of industrial limbo known in the nuclear power industry as “monitored storage.”
The owner of the Londonderry Township facility, GPU Nuclear Corporation, first proposed the storage option to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in August 1988 as an interim stage between the end of defueling and decommissioning at the plant.
Unit 2’s ongoing status has garnered industry-wide attention, primarily because it was the site of the country’s worst commercial nuclear power accident in March 1979, but also because it is the first nuclear plant to be “mothballed” in this manner.
The NRC announced an amendment to GPU’s license in mid-September that permitted the utility to possess Unit 2 but not operate it. That hurdle cleared the way for GPU to place the damaged reactor into “post-defueling monitored storage” until its planned decommissioning along with the healthy Unit 1 reactor in April 2014.
According to GPU officials, some radioactive material remains at Unit 2 but is expected to decay significantly before the plants decommissioning 20 years from now. As a result, the NRC has issued detailed technical specifications that must be met during storage, including the frequency of inspections and the equipment that must be maintained.
Prior to issuing the possession-only license, the NRC staff reportedly conducted safety and technical evaluations, which determined long-term storage to be an acceptable option for the plant.
Prices From 23 Years Ago
40 oz. pkg.$4.79
Mozzarella Balls 16 oz. pkg.$2.34
Snowflake Rolls$1.29/8 roll pkg.
Bertolli Olive Oil 17 oz.$2.89
Farley’s Fruit Snacks
10 oz. pkg.$1.55
Green Zuchini Squash58¢/lb.
Cavatelli Pasta Salad$1.88/lb.
Minute Maid 64 oz.$1.79
Croutons 5.5 oz$1.09
Look Back At The News Stories That Highlighted Our Year: 1993
Since it’s traditional at the start of a new year to look back on all the events that shaped and molded our world during the previous 12 months, we thought it would be interesting to review some of the news stories that made their mark in the Press And Journal in 1993.
JANUARY 1993: Union Hopes To Salvage Sale; With a skeleton crew of fewer than 30 workers now filling the remaining manufacturing orders at Bethlehem Steel’s trackwork facility in Steelton, local union officials are still holding our hope that the corporation will find a buyer for the plant before it shuts down permanently.
FEBRUARY 1993: Met-Ed Tries Again To Break Electric Pact; Metropolitan Edison Company has advised Middletown officials that it is seeking, again, to terminate the 1906 contract under which it supplies electricity to the Borough at the favorable rate of 1 cent per kilowatt hour (Kwh).
MARCH 1993: 20-plus Inches of Snow Finds Locals Still Digging Our From The “Great Blizzard of ’93; It may have not been the area’s worst snow storm of the century, but for most local residents it ranked as one of the worst in memory. Although our area was covered by an average of 20 to 23 inches of snow Saturday night, it wasn’t enough to top the record snowfall of 25.2 inches that was dumped on this area during the storm that hit here on Feb. 11, 1983.
APRIL 1993: Flood Was Little More Than Messy Nuisance; For some of the residents in Royalton Borough, the flood of 1993 was a minor inconvenience compared to the hoards of sightseers who overflowed the small town’s streets and created a general nuisance of themselves.
SEPTEMBER 1993: AMP to Expand Plant In Lower Swatara Twp.; Officials with AMP Incorporated announced early last week that the giant electronics firm will construct a large new building at its Fulling Mill Road location in Lower Swatara township that could provide at least 130 new jobs for area residents.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 January 2017 13:26