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MAI NLI NE newspapers

FH School Board discusses bond refinancing, vaccinations

Vol. 117 No. 13

USPS 439-000

By Sean Wechtenhiser for Mainline Newspapers

When the new Forest Hills Junior Senior High School was built, the school district took out three bonds to help pay the cost of the building project. Last fall, the district refinanced the first of those three bonds. At their March 11 meeting, the board members discussed the refinancing of the second bonds. In addition to the refinancing, staff vaccination and kindergarten and pre-K registration were discussed. Jamie Doyle, of PFM Financial Advisors, went over

Portage, Pa.

the information about the bond issue. Doyle was involved in the original bond issue for the new building five years ago, and worked with the board in September 2020 to refinance the 2015 bond used to pay part of the cost of the new building. The bond refinancing discussed at the March 11 meeting involved the 2016 bond issue. Doyle said this bond refinancing will not produce as much potential savings as the bond refinancing the district did last fall. Doyle anticipates savings being between 2-3.35 percent on the long end. According to Doyle, the savings last fall were

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3.8 percent on the long end. In terms of dollars, Doyle estimates a net savings on the bond refinancing at approximately $229,000, with $174,000 in savings coming in budget year 2022. The remaining savings would be spread out over the remaining years of the bond. Doyle pointed out that there are changing interest rates. She explained that for every 1/10 of one percent change in interest rates, savings can move by approximately $110,000. She also said they would only do the bond reissue if they get at least a net savings of $200,000. SEE BOND, PAGE 15

Helping hands

As part of earning their Brownie Quest Journey badge, Abby Spaid and Kamryn Ramos help the Portage Women’s Club decorate the mini-park. The girls are part of Girl Scout Troop 16350. Submitted photo.

Waiting patiently

Braedyn Sarver and Freya Zimmerman wait patiently for the start of the South Fork Library easter egg hunt Saturday, March 27. Photo by Ron Portash.

Our Town: Portage community Zoom meeting set for April 1

By Calem Illig

of Mainline Newspapers

Community members from around the Portage area are being called upon to tell their stories and shed light on all the area has to offer. Through the production series Our Town, residents of Portage and its surrounding communities are asked to step in front of the camera. “We want to capture the essence of the community and the stories that encapsulate them, said Carolyn Donaldson, who is in charge of community engagement at WPSU. “We are looking for people to get the word out and help us share those stories.” The Our Town series, devel-

oped by WPSU-TV, has been produced for over 20 years to tell the stories of local communities and capture the essence of Central Pennsylvania. The program is looking for approximately 25 volunteers willing to be on camera and tell their stories for the final program. Portage was last featured in Our Town in 2010. This year’s production will follow the path of the Portage Area School District and will include communities such as Lilly and Wilmore. “Our Town brings to life those special stories of the communities that we feature,” Donaldson said. “We oftentimes come back around, and we love to come back into a community and maybe highlight some additions to what’s happened, change out the stories completely or add to stories that have been done before.” Donaldson said there are no age restrictions for storytellers, and that the “Our Town: Portage” program is solely

searching for individuals who are enthusiastic and passionate about their community. The program is looking for individuals who possess a unique story to tell, along with “local history buffs that can tell the fascinating stories of the Portage area.” There are also other opportunities available for people who do not wish to be on camera. “This is a great collaboration between community members and our production crew at WPSU,” said Cole Cullen, who is the producer of the “Our Town: Portage” program. “The reason the Our Town model is so successful and allows us to come to towns like this is because a lot of the work is done by community members.” Interviews are set to take place April 10 at a location yet to be determined, and they may also be held via Zoom for anyone that wishes to have a further degree of social distancing and comfort.

SEE TOWN, PAGE 2

Easter Eggs

Brenda Kohart helps the Easter Bunny set up the Easter Egg Hunt in South Fork March 27. Photo by Ron Portash.

Got one!

Amelia Dusack grabs her first of many Easter eggs at the South Fork Library Easter Egg Hunt on March 27. Photo by Ron Portash.

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