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Linglestown Gazette: February 2007

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

C.D. school board balks at tax-shift plan

According to a report in The Patriot-News, Central Dauphin school board members are still trying to tie down how much savings in property taxes would result from a proposed 0.4 percent hike in the earned income tax rate. The issue will be the subject of a referendum on the May 15 primary election ballot.

Under the plan, renters and households with a combined income of more than $75,000 would get hit with an overall tax hike.

This state-mandated tax plan, known as Act 1, is getting bad press across the state. In Mechanicsburg, school board members are recommending voters reject the tax hike that will appear on a ballot referendum.

You can put me in the "no" column on this one.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

More Rt. 39 congestion??

According to today's edition of The Patriot-News, there's a new high-profile shopping center in the works along Route 39 in neighboring Susquehanna Township where Vartan's building-supply business was located (2300 Linglestown Road). CLICK HERE to read the article.

Route 39 from the river to just west of the village of Linglestown is fast becoming another congested commercial corridor like Route 22.

It's possible commercial development could spread to the east side of the village. To find out for sure, Lower Paxton Township's zoning map needs to be checked.

Monday, February 26, 2007

C.D. schools: Tax shift in the works

A local tax issue will be on the agenda at tonight's Central Dauphin school board meeting (7 pm, East High School's lecture hall, 626 Rutherford Road).

The board intends to adopt a resolution to put a question on the May 15 election ballot that asks voters whether they want to increase the district's earned income tax from 1.5 percent to 2 percent, and use the increased revenue to lower property taxes.

If approved, the local tax deduction on paychecks would go from 2 percent to 2.5 percent, with the school district getting 2 percent and Lower Paxton Township getting 0.5 percent.

To get school property tax relief, property owners would need to file a homestead application with Dauphin County.

All school districts in Pennsylvania are going through this process as required by a state law adopted last year. CLICK HERE for information on the Act 1 property tax relief program.

I'll keep an eye out for news stories related to this tax issue.

In a related matter, CLICK HERE for an article about the Central Dauphin School District's tentative 2007-2008 budget that includes a 6 percent property tax increase.
Hat tip to Eileen Hurley of SWAN (Stray Winds Area Neighbors) for the news tip.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Village potpourri

* Lower Paxton Township's Web site is being overhauled, according to township manager George Wolfe. I inquired because agendas for the township supervisors meeting had not been posted since last November.

* Lower Paxton Township supervisors recently adopted a public safety spending plan that includes money for Linglestown Fire Company to replace its tanker truck with a new one.

* Linglestown Women's Club is offering two $500 scholarships to any Central Dauphin High School senior who is planning to further their education. For details, contact Cathy Grove, the club's education chairwoman, at 652-0768.

* Erie does snow better than L.P. That's a surprise!

A post from the PennLive.com Linglestown Forum was printed on page 2 of this week's Patriot-News East section:

I lived in Erie for 24 years and I can't remember one time complaining about the snow plow job those guys did. I really wish they would send these guys to Erie for an inservice on how to plow snow and take care of winter roads. Erie snow plow drivers would have NEVER EVER left the slush on roads and intersections as "traction" for ice.
* Annette Antoun, publisher of The Paxton Herald, ran a front-page editorial in the Feb. 21 issue about the Linglestown square project that doesn't match up with what really happened. The headline pretty much tells the story – "Hanky-Panky" Clouds RE-VOTE On Locale Of Rt. 39 & Blue Mountain Parkway "Loop." Everyone On 12-Person Committee NOT NOTIFIED Of Meeting!

For more info, check the comments on a couple recent posts on this blog:

Blue Mountain Parkway route revisited
Linglestown improvement project approved

* Did you know that one of the oldest and largest trees in Pennsylvania is just a stones throw off of Linglestown Road? CLICK HERE for the lowdown from the Lower Paxton Historical Society.

* The Linglestown Chocolate Cafe was pictured in the Feb. 22 edition of the Go! weekend section published by The Patriot-News. Check page 18 if you still have Thursday's paper.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Linglestown music menu, Feb 23 - 25

The one and only Frank Cotolo kicks off the weekend Friday night at St. Thomas Roasters, located a few doors west of the village square. Frank's show is a unique blend of music and comedy. His first pluck of a guitar string should happen around 8 pm.

No Outlet, a local band, will take the stage Saturday night at St. Thomas Roasters at around 8 pm. I have no idea what kind of music they play, so check it out and post a comment.

Wrapping things up this weekend, New Hope Church, 584 Colonial Club Drive, is sponsoring a concert by Grammy-nominated Christian rockers DecemberRadio. The concert kicks off Sunday at 6:30 pm. Admission is $8 for adults and $6 for students.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Linglestown improvement project approved

The Patriot-News reports that the Lower Paxton Township supervisors last night approved the right-of-way plan for improving traffic flow on Route 39 through the village. CLICK HERE to read the article.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

L.P. supervisors meet tonight

Lower Paxton Township supervisors will conduct a business meeting tonight at 7:30 pm at the municipal center, 425 Prince Street.

Discussion of the Route 39 improvement project slated for the village of Linglestown most likely will be an agenda item.

The meeting will be broadcast on channel 20 on Comcast cable.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Blue Mountain Parkway bypass route revisited

The route of the planned Blue Mountain Parkway bypass road appears to be a done deal, finally. The bypass, or loop road, is part of the Route 39 corridor improvement project that is supposed to go under construction in Linglestown this spring.

The Village of Linglestown Committee last week changed its recommendation for the bypass route based on new information from the Lower Paxton Township supervisors, who are responsible for approving the project.

Instead of using a route with an extension of Blackberry Alley (route "1" in photo), township officials and the village committee now agree a route that would intersect Blue Mountain Parkway north of Blackberry Alley is the best option (route "2" in photo).

My take:
I was surprised the village committee originally recommended the alley route, which would create a tight turn for large vehicles headed southbound on Blue Mountain Parkway and would have significant impacts to private properties.

The village committee struggled with this decision because the Rowe family strongly objected to the northern route because it cuts through their back yard. Also, PennDOT never said the Blackberry Alley route definitely would not work.

Clearly, the northern route is the way to go. Large vehicles southbound on Blue Mountain Parkway will have easier access to the parkway and no privately owned buildings will be affected.

Hopefully the delay in selecting the bypass route will not force construction to be postponed until spring 2008.
Prior posts:
* Village committee picks route for bypass
* Vote anticipated on village bypass project
* From the comments
* Rt. 39 project takes bad turn for Linglestown family
* Route 39 plan finalized

Friday, February 16, 2007

Linglestown committee changes path of loop road

Based on recommendations from Lower Paxton Township officials, the Village of Linglestown Committee changed the recommendation they made in January for a connector road planned between Linglestown Road and Blue Mountain Parkway.

I attended the meeting and will try to post a brief report over the weekend.

For now, CLICK HERE for more details from The Patriot-News.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Village music menu for Feb. 16, 17

This weekend's music menu in Linglestown includes a new venue, The Linglestown Chocolate Cafe. Acoustical guitar player and singer Frank Cotolo, who regularly graces the stage at St. Thomas Roasters, will be the featured artist on Friday evening.

Speaking of St. Thomas Roasters, Jim Baker is scheduled to perform at the coffee shop on Saturday evening.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Geo's moving?

The latest scuttlebutt on PennLive's Linglestown Forum is that Geo's Family Restaurant is moving to the location now used by the Country Oven at the Best Western on Mountain Road.

Geo's will soon be replaced by a Sheetz convenience store/gas station. CLICK HERE for more details.

Please leave a comment if you have information on what's happening with Geo's.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Linglestown Fire Co. seeks support, new members

The Linglestown Fire Company recently kicked off an annual fund drive, along with publishing a first-ever edition of a community newsletter called The Linglestown Bugler.

If you didn't receive a newsletter in the mail, copies are available at retail shops in the village. I've seen copies at St. Thomas Roasters and Schenk's bakery.

Snow-free run ends

This winter's first significant snow fell today in Linglestown and throughout most of Pennsylvania. About 3-4 inches of white stuff piled up prior to precipitation turning to sleet just after sunset. A few more inches of snow are predicted prior to the storm ending tomorrow.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Meeting on Route 39 upgrades

The Village of Linglestown Committee is scheduled to meet Thursday, Feb. 15, at 7 pm at the Linglestown Fire Company's old firehouse. The status of the Route 39 improvement project will be discussed. Construction is expected to begin this spring.

I hope to attend the meeting and file a report. CLICK HERE for the most recent project update posted on Linglestown Gazette.
Other Lower Paxton Township meetings this week:

Tue., Feb. 13 – Board of Supervisors workshop session, Municipal Center, 425 Prince Street, 7:30 pm

Note: Workshop sessions are held to discuss pending township business. Township supervisors usually do not vote on issues during these meetings.

Wed., Feb. 14 – Planning Commission, Municipal Center, 7 pm

Note: Development plans and local land-use regulations are discussed. The commission serves as an advisory panel for the Board of Supervisors.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Music at Roasters

St. Thomas Roasters coffeehouse in Linglestown is featuring the music of two artists this weekend – Marie Smith tonight and Moe Weimer Saturday night. Music usually begins at around 8 pm.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Sheetz store to replace Geo's Restaurant

Lower Paxton Township supervisors recently approved a development plan for a Sheetz convenience store to be constructed on the site of Geo's Family Restaurant on Allentown Boulevard.

I've only eaten at Geo's a few times since moving to Linglestown 16 years ago. But a sizable number of people, especially those in the over 50 crowd, seem to be regulars. I wonder where they'll go after construction starts on the Sheetz store?

And, a hat tip goes to Qfest for directing people to this blog via a post on PennLive's Linglestown forum.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Lower Paxton Township update

I reviewed a videotape of last night's township Board of Supervisors meeting, and there were only two items worth noting:

* The board passed a resolution related to tax distribution problems the township is having with Capital Area Tax Collection Bureau.

Lower Paxton officials estimate that the township's earned income tax revenues have been short by about $70,000 per year in recent years. Apparently other municipalities in the area are having similar problems with the bureau.

CLICK HERE for an editorial and HERE for a story from The Patriot-News about the embattled tax bureau.

* As reported several days ago on this blog, Hoss's Steak and Sea House is planning to build a restaurant near the intersection of Linglestown and Colonial roads.

During a discussion related to a resolution about Hoss's liquor license, township officials said the restaurant would be located along Colonial Road behind the Sheetz convenience store.

The township has not received development plans for the restaurant.


Monday, February 05, 2007

School district, township meetings

If you attend one of the meetings, please submit a brief note on what happened to Linglestown Gazette via email or comment.


Mon., Feb. 12 – School Board, C.D. East H.S. Lecture Hall, 7 pm


Tue., Feb. 6 – Greenway Committee, Municipal Center, 7:30 pm

Tue., Feb. 6 – Board of Supervisors business meeting, Municipal Center, 7:30 pm *

Wed., Feb. 7 – Parks & Recreation Board, Friendship Community Center, 7 pm

Tue., Feb. 13 – Board of Supervisors workshop session, Municipal Center, 7:30 pm **
* LP Twp. Board of Supervisors meeting are broadcast on the Comcast cable TV system, channel 20.
** Workshop sessions are held to discuss pending township business. Township supervisors usually do not vote on issues during these meetings.

Horses killed in barn fire near Linglestown

Click on headline to read a news brief from The Patriot-News; CLICK HERE to view a map that shows approximate location of fire.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

FREE tunes, great java and more

Ever wonder how a multi-combustion engine works and want to sing your favorite song at the same time?

Then on Friday, Feb. 2, between 8 pm and 10 pm, the place to be is St. Thomas Roasters in Linglestown where Frank Cotolo guides you through a few hours of life's more satisfactory moments – with coffee, of course. You get music, songs, comedy and a warm place to sit.

Former Hollywood insider, comedian, author, journalist, radio star, fake astronaut, proxy winner of the 200-meter sloth competition and actor Frank Cotolo sings his own versions of popular tunes from all eras and ages and keeps the audience guessing what he will do, say or play next.

No admission, just buy terrific coffee from a variety of blends, and eat cake, too. Come on down to 5951 Linglestown Road in the village of Linglestown, just off the square. Call (717) 526-4171 if you need directions.

Get a good seat early. Get a bad seat late.