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Middletown Borough grants coordinator leaving for new position


HicksbeforecouncilPress and Journal Photo by Dan Miller - Middletown Borough Economic Development/Grants Coordinator Jonathan Hicks addresses borough council during a meeting in April 2015.



The Borough of Middletown is losing its grants coordinator.


Jonathan Hicks, who came to the borough in January 2014 as an intern with Penn State Harrisburg, is leaving the position to accept a job as new Grants Manager for the City of Harrisburg.


City spokeswoman Joyce Davis confirmed for the Press and Journal that Hicks has been hired as the city's new Grants Manager. Hicks' first day with the city is Monday, Davis said.


Hicks' departure was announced during the Monday, July 20, Middletown Borough Council meeting by Borough Manager Tim Konek. Konek told council that Hicks' last day would be Friday, July 24.


"We were lucky to get him (Hicks) through an internship program," Konek told council. "He stayed on with us after his internship was over as he completed his studies, and he found a much better opportunity. We wish him well."


As grants coordinator, Hicks was responsible for writing applications for government grants that the borough sought to help fund various projects.


For example, over the past year Hicks was involved in submitting applications on behalf of the borough for grants to benefit Kids Kastle in Hoffer Park, redeveloping the Elks Building, and to provide funds for the proposed downtown zoning overlay.


More recently, Hicks had been working with a PSU intern on an income survey of Middletown residents toward applying for a grant to help pay for repair of curb and sidewalk.


The borough also kept Hicks busy with other duties. He provided staff support to the Middletown Industrial and Commercial Development Authority, and was tapped as the first chairman of the new Middletown Business Association that was unveiled in May. 


That the borough should devote more resources to pursuing government grants was among recommendations included in the Early Intervention Plan that was submitted to borough council in 2013.


No discussions have been held regarding how the responsibilities Hicks has performed for the borough will be handled in his absence, spokesman Chris Courogen told The Press and Journal.


Hicks started working for the borough as an intern with Penn State Harrisburg in January 2014, and the borough hired him full-time in May 2014.


Earlier this year Hicks received the Irving and Mildred Hand State, Urban and Regional Affairs Award for 2014-15 from Penn State Harrisburg. The award recognizes outstanding achievement by a graduate student in the study of state, regional, and local government.


In May, Hicks graduated from Penn State Harrisburg with a Master's Degree in Public Administration.

Last Updated on Friday, 24 July 2015 10:05

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Repairs to flood-damaged Jury Street Bridge to begin


bridgephoto7 22 15Press And Journal Photo by Eric Wise -- Launching the start of a project to rebuild Highspire’s Jury Street Bridge at a ground-breaking ceremony are, from left: first row, state Rep. Patty Kim; A. Kay Sutch, president of Highspire Borough Council, and Highspire Mayor John R. Hoerner; back row, Dauphin County commissioners Michael Pries and George Hartwick III.



Highspire marked the beginning of a project to rebuild the borough’s Jury Street bridge with a ground-breaking ceremony on Thursday, July 16 at the bridge.


For the full story, CLICK HERE to subscribe to the Press And Journal.



Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 July 2015 16:03

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WHAT A YEAR! She shows how Middletown has changed by using its high school yearbooks

internyearbooks7 22 15Press and Journal Photo by Dan Miller -- Mikaela Fleisher, an intern at the Middletown Public Library, with some of the library’s collection of Middletown High School and Middletown Area High School yearbooks.



Most of us have just one high school yearbook or, at best, a few.

Each one represents a snapshot in time, a guide to a year that holds special significance in a life.


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Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 July 2015 15:47

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Park improvements? Chess boards, bocce courts, hiking trails suggested


It was time to think big when residents gathered last month to share their ideas about the future of parks in Lower Swatara Twp. About 20 residents turned out with ideas from the basic request for parking to suggestions for trails and boat launches.

Tom Mehaffie, who leads the township’s recreation board and serves as president of the township’s board of commissioners, welcomed all ideas for what he says he believes are the township’s “crown jewels,” its six parks.

The township received a grant for park improvements in 2014, and it applied for more grant money in April. With some state grant programs allowing annual applications, Mehaffie said there is an opportunity for many improvements to the parks – and for forging a recreational vision with lasting contributions to the community.

For the full story, CLICK HERE to subscribe to the Press And Journal.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 July 2015 15:47

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Reid to run write-in campaign for council


Robert G. Reid, the former long-time mayor of Middletown, announced he is running a write-in campaign for a seat on Middletown Borough Council in November’s general election, pitting him against Republican and Democratic candidates on the ballot.reidphoto7 22 15WEBRobert Reid

Reid said he will seek a four-year term representing the First Ward. Republican David Rhen, a former councilor, and Democrat David Scully, a political newcomer, already will appear on the ballot.

“The town seems to be going backwards instead of forward,’’ Reid, a Republican, told the Press And Journal on Tuesday, July 21. “I’m going to see if I can help the community.’’

Reid said he stayed out of the May primary because “there were enough people in the First Ward on the Republican ticket already – some were good candidates.’’

Rhen won the Republican nomination, beating three other candidates, including Reid’s niece, Rachelle Reid. Robert Reid, a retired school teacher, served as Middletown’s mayor for nearly 30 years, bowing out of politics in 2013.

Write-in candidates rarely win, though one candidate, Travis Arndt, won the Democratic nomination for a Second Ward council seat as a write-in candidate in May’s primary.

“You can’t sit back and think you have it made,’’ Reid admitted. “It’s a little tougher.’’

“Somebody – I have the experience – has just got to try to move things in a different direction,’’ Reid said. “There’s a lack of communication among council and the people – among council members themselves.’’


Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 July 2015 15:42

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