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Why are executive sessions held at local government meetings?

August 9, 2018

No official actions or votes can take place

By Ron Portash

of Mainline Newspapers

The recent two hour executive session at the beginning of the Portage Municipal Authority’s Aug. 2 meeting has brought to light the question of why governmental agencies have sessions where the public is not allowed to attend. The Pennsylvania Sunshine Act, officially known as the Open Meeting Law (65 C.S. 701-176), provides that official action (votes) and deliberations performed by the quorum of the members of an agency must take place at a public meeting. Authorities, like the Portage Municipal Authority, qualify as an agency under the definition because it exercises governmental authority and takes official action. An executive session can be held during an open meeting. The reason(s) for the executive session must be announced at the public meeting immediately prior to or subsequent to the executive session. The announcement must be more than a one word reason like “litigation.� Court rulings established over 25 years ago state that a real and distinct reason must be announced.

Discussions held in executive sessions are required to be limited to the matter and no official actions or votes can be taken. There are five basic reasons, along with one general catch-all reason, an executive session can be held. The first and most often used is “personnel matters.� The agency members can discuss employment matters relating to individuals or prospective, current or former public officials and SEE EXECUTIVE, PAGE 6

Lunch crew

Ebensburg VFW auxiliary members Ella Conigy (front row, from left), Carmen DeStefano, Angel Stephens, Tammy Slebodnick, (back row) Anne Johnson and Bonnie Howell serve lunch at the VFW’s parking lot during Ebensburg Homecoming July 28. Absent from photo was Wee Wee Brown. Photo by Kristin Baudoux.

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Carrolltown Borough discusses heavy rain, flooding issues PAGE 2 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

By Amber Stich

of Mainline Newspapers

At the August council meeting, Carrolltown Borough Council members focused on the topic of flooding, which has been a main concern lately due to the excessive rainfall the area has received. The council discussed the July 30 storm, which caused basement flooding in residents’ homes and the borough building, and caused the water plant to temporarily shut down. Borough manager Lonnie Batdorf explained that the rain has washed out farm fields around the water treatment plant and actually started infiltrating the building. He said there were similar situations like that at the borough’s well locations, so as a precautionary measure, he had the plant shut down in case the situation got worse. Batdorf explained that the water plant only pumps during the night to fill the storage tanks, so there was still a water supply to work off of. He just did not want the plant to encounter issues if it tried to pump that night. The plant was up and running again within 24 hours of the shutdown. Jim McCann, who deals with Carrolltown’s emergency management planning, said he called the Cambria County Emergency Management Agency to monitor the flooding situation at the plant.







   

      

           

  

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Luckily, the issue settled down without more measures being taken. Batdorf said the clean up after the flooding at the plants and the borough building basement was able to be completed quickly. Some roads in the borough also needed to be cleaned after the intense rain and flooding washed them out in areas, and the council took a moment to commend the borough crew for their hard work in restoring these roads quickly and for doing a good job. The council then heard from engineer Pat Mulcahy, who explained he did not have the completed stormwater study for this month, but it would be completed for the September meeting. He did present the council with plans for the stormwater work to be done on Dutch Road. Batdorf and Mulcahy went over some of the stormwater changes to take place on the road including the addition of inlets, replacing non-functional storm boxes and adding in new storm boxes to resolve current issues and better handle the amount of water in the area. Batdorf said the main issues were a stormwater line installed by a resident that punctured through the borough’s line and cause the water to back up, as well as the issue of a collapsed driveway that crushed the stormwater line underneath it. Batdorf said he spoke with the

resident, and the driveway would need to be moved to a different location after the lines are replaced because it cannot cover over the stormwater system. He said he expects Dutch Road to be closed from East Carroll Street to Richard Street while the work is being completed. The council will begin looking into bids for this project, but is expecting a large price tag with the extent of the work needed on the road. The council also addressed the stormwater issue on Back Road, a dirt road that runs past properties into the Elmora area. Batdorf said when residents had gas companies come into the area on their behalf to drill wells, those companies were supposed to repair the road, but they never did. He added that the fields encroached onto the road and caused the location of the road to vary from where it was. The road sees a lot of water erosion and damage every heavy rain, so the council decided to get pricing on contracting out the road to get it back to its original condition. Mulcahy also gave the council information on other municipalities that charge a stormwater fee, as they had been considering that possibility for Carrolltown. He

said Ebensburg charges $8 a month, or $96 per year for stormwater. Meadsville charges $7.50, and Highspire charges $7.50 for residential buildings and $15 for nonresidential structures. Mulcahy said these numbers were “food for thought,� and that having towns that already have these ordinances in place would make it easier if the council wanted to use them as examples while crafting their own ordinance. The

council made no decision on a stormwater fee at this time. Lastly, the mayor James Ertter asked council if everything was approved and ready for the Fireman’s Jubilee to take place this weekend. The council said everything was approved and hoped for a good turnout on the event. The next Carrolltown Borough Council meeting will take place Sept. 3 at 7 p.m. in the borough building.


MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 3


Nanty Glo addresses dirty water issue, solutions moving forward PAGE 4 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

Jackson Township requests more information to better notify residents

By Allie Garver

of Mainline Newspapers

Last week, the Nanty Glo Water Authority’s treatment plant took a hit with the large amount of rain, and a glitch in the system caused dirty water for residents. At the Aug. 1 meeting, Jackson Township supervisor and water authority board member John Wallet and water authority foreman Fred Meier attended Nanty Glo’s meeting to fully understand the problems so their residents could be better informed because the township does receive water from Nanty Glo. “Obviously, you guys know that we have a problem with the water that we get off you,” said Wallet. “Our residents are really pounding us hard.” Wallet asked about the plan moving forward and how long the turbidity in the water is going to last. Nanty Glo Water Authority operator Larry Krampy explained that there is an iron and manganese problem in the system, which is causing the turbidity in the water. “The chlorine reacts with iron and

manganese and it oxidizes it and it turns it brown and discolors the water,” said Krampy. “The state is working on it.” According to Krampy, numerous samples from the system have been sent to Harrisburg, but not all of the results have been sent back to him yet. “There’s nothing out of the ordinary,” Krampy said. “There’s no health issue or anything like that.” Krampy said that right now the reservoir is dirty and the filter runs are “way too short” and “they malfunctioned way too fast.” Engineer Joel Romagna explained that part of the problem is because there was an issue with the alarms. “The alarms weren’t wired properly,” said Romagna. “So, not only did those filter run times cut short, but the filter was backwashing for 16 hours straight. It drained the clearwell was the issue.” Since the alarms were not wired correctly, there was no way for Krampy to know that there was an issue with the plant. This meant that there was no water to backwash the plant, according to

Romagna. “Unfortunately, we had to learn the hard way that those alarms weren’t [working properly],” said Romagna. Krampy had to switch over to Ebensburg water for his system. “I’m not here pointing fingers, I just want to talk about maybe we can know what’s going on so we can tell our people more intelligently what’s going on, and maybe what we’re looking at for the future for a resolution to correct the problem,” said Wallet. Krampy said that right now, there is “unfortunately, no good solution to tell them.” Krampy agreed with Wallet that the Jackson Township residents should be better informed with what is going on in the system. “Informing them is better than not knowing,” stated Wallet. “You guys know what happens with social media today. Our girls in the office, they’re just getting pounded [with] pretty nasty phone calls, and they don’t deserve that.” Krampy said he will be sure to keep the Jackson Township super-

visors and water authority better informed moving forward if there is another issue. The worst areas with the dirty water are the lines that are not plastic, according to Romagna. “That’s what we have to work on,” said authority member Diane Holby. “We got to try to get those old pipes out of the ground.”

Krampy said that the way to resolve the issue now is to flush the lines, because the dirty water is already in the system and it needs to be moved out. The lines will be flushed Aug. 20 in Nanty Glo. Jackson will also be flushing the lines in its system as well.


Water sales reviewed by Jackson Township Water Authority

MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 5

By Allie Garver

of Mainline Newspapers

A question on specific water sales and which category they fall under in the monthly statement was broached by John Wallet at the July 24 Jackson Township Water Authority meeting. “I’m looking at our water sales, other water sales, and that’s reflected in this statement?” asked Wallet. Certified public accountant Jim Deter said that metered water sales are “any sales that went through the billing system.” “My understanding, all the water that we’re selling now [that’s] extra, like to the power plant or to Sunoco is metered,

is it not?” asked Wallet. Office manager Debra Buksa said that the water is metered, but the companies are billed separately. “How does it show up on the income statement is my question,” said Wallet. Deter said it will show up on the statement as other water sales and it is only listed when the money is received and deposited. “I’m just asking about this because I’m looking at the quantity of water on the foreman’s monthly report for both of those different sales and I guess it’s just not that much money when it comes in,” said Wallet. Deter added that if the water was sold

this month and the company didn’t pay for it yet, then it won’t show up until next month. Wallet questioned whether Trinity is paying their bills “religiously.” Buksa said that she is billing out approximately every two weeks and Trinity is paying about every two weeks. “Just so I’m clear, do you get paid on a regular basis?” asked solicitor C.J. Webb. Buksa said that at the time of the meeting, Trinity was approximately four weeks behind because she has to wait for their billing department to catch up. “The girl, she’s in Nevada, who does the billing out there,” said Buksa. “She checks all the reads too and the numbers

and she’ll call with questions or whatever, and usually in about four days we get a check.” Buksa added that she thinks there are different departments the bill has to go through before it gets to the main department for the check to be written out. “My interpretation of what you’re saying is: You send out the bill, they’ve got a process of where it goes, and eventually it gets to the lady who’s cutting the check. You may or may not have contact with her, but that ends up being about the same time for every bill?” questioned Webb. Buksa said that the payment is consistent and the authority is receiving 100 percent of the bill, not partial payments.

Municipal Auth. moves forward with sheriff sale of house

By Allie Garver

of Mainline Newspapers

‘We can’t back down’

A five-year-old unpaid sewer bill through the Blacklick Valley Municipal Authority has been a major topic of conversation at several meetings this year. At the July 25 meeting, solicitor William Barbin explained where he was at, legally, with the sheriff sale of that property. “We got the full judgment against him,” said Barbin. “He has 30 days to appeal that.” The 30 days started July 5, added Barbin, and the judgment

is $15,336.38. After Aug. 5, Barbin can ask the sheriff to sell the property. The authority will be responsible for a $1,500 deposit for that sale to cover the costs. The owner will be given the chance to pay off the total amount he owes, but if that doesn’t happen the home will be sold. “We can’t back down,” said chairman Mike Pisarcik. Desmond Warzel made a motion to approve the sheriff’s

fee and move forward with the sale. Mike Palovich seconded the motion. Another issue the authority has faced is the hit and run on a fire hydrant along State Route 422 that happened last year. Barbin has tried two different addresses, but cannot find the driver of the vehicle. “Now what do we do?” asked Pisarcik. “He’s an out-of-state guy who was traveling through and hit

By Andrew Smithmyer

performed by adjacent property owners. He continued to say that there’s a sidewalk ordinance that would put the responsibilities on the sidewalk owners. President William Patterson said the residents will probably take care of the sidewalk because that’s their way to church. However, under the contract with PennDOT, the borough is primarily responsible for the sidewalk. If the borough fails to perform any of the

stipulations for the bridge, PennDOT will complete the maintenance and subtract the amount from the borough’s liquid fuels fund. Urbas said it’s up to the borough how they want to handle the ordinance. “I’ve never seen that happen,” said Urbas. “I’m not saying it can’t occur, I just haven’t seen it happen.” Urbas said the project will get underway during summer 2019.

something, and he’s not at either of the two addresses we found for him,” said Barbin. The authority can re-file the damage, said Barbin. “Can we notify the New Jersey, whatever their licensing bureau is?” asked Warzel. “[We can tell them] his address on his license isn’t valid.” Barbin said he could write a letter and send it to New Jersey and see what happens. Pisarcik told Barbin to try sending the letter. “I’d be happy to do that,” said Barbin.

Pisarcik said that within the next couple of weeks the hydrant will be repaired because he has the parts. Moving on, engineer Richard Wray had a brief update on the ice severing of the guide wires at the Pindleton Ridge water tank. Wray said that PAX Systems and Mid-Atlantic Storage Systems were on site and have compiled a report for a corrective action plan for the facility. Wray expects communication back regarding the problem and what will be done to rectify it within four to six weeks.

She also said PennDOT will start a project in Cassandra Borough in 2020. Patterson had some questions concerning the detour route when the

project starts. Urbas stated PennDOT will only use state routes for the detour, otherwise, they would have to coordinate with the borough to use local routes.

PennDOT to rehabilitate bridge on Route 53 in 2019

of Mainline Newspapers

Jessica Urbas, a project manager from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, met with the council during the Aug. 1 Lilly Borough meeting to discuss a bridge rehabilitation project on State Route 53. Urbas said during the rehab, PennDOT will be replacing the sidewalk on Washington Street. Every time PennDOT installs a sidewalk, PennDOT has to fill out a standard agreement form stating the borough is responsible for maintenance, upkeep and snow removal on the sidewalk. Urbas said the project will include replacing the barrier on the bridge, a sidewalk and an Americans With Disabilities Act compliant ramp. The borough had some concerns about the retaining flood wall, but Urbas said PennDOT will be replacing parts of the wall. Borough solicitor Michael Emerick said there is a clause in the agreement stating that the borough may provide an ordinance where sidewalk maintenance responsibilities under the agreement should be

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Expert beekeepers hold educational session at PGSP PAGE 6 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

By Amber Stich

of Mainline Newspapers

The integral role of bees in human food production

On Saturday, Aug. 4, Ebensburg natives Bernie and Anne Svidergol visited Prince Gallitzin State Park for locals and visitors to talk about the important work bees do in our ecosystem and what it is like to own your own beehives. Bernie Svidergol began by giving a brief history of bees in the United States. He said while there are examples of bees trapped in amber from prehistoric times, there were no bees in the United States until 1620, when the German black bee was introduced. Later, Italian bees were introduced as well, and now there are a multitude of bee types present. Bees are industrious workers and all have their own role in the hive, as Svidergol explained, with some bees living only a few days to gather food, and others existing

only to perpetuate the species. A queen bee can lay up to 1,500 eggs in one day to repopulate the hive as older bees die. All of these bees, however, rely on a source of pollen to feed themselves and their queen. He explained that the bees are sent out to collect pollen and carry it back on special hairs on their legs. These bees then give it to the worker bees to store. Svidergol said pollen is pure protein that the bees break down by storing it in cells with nectar to turn it into food. But the things bees make are not only useful to them. Anne Svidergol said that different types of honey can have beneficial effects for the people who eat it. She said buckwheat honey is good for coughs, colds and sore throats, and wildflower honey is good for allergies.

Bernie Svidergol said that he and his wife don’t just collect the honey. They also use the wax and propolis, or bee glue, which is mixture the bees use to seal up spaces in the hive. Propolis is antibacterial and antimicrobial, and its properties can be beneficial to humans. Svidergol said a few bee stings can even be beneficial to people who have arthritis and have been used for treatments of diseases like multiple sclerosis. “If you have a beehive, you have a medical chest,� Svidergol said. You may have heard about an increase in bee conservation efforts in recent years, and Svidergol said that this is due to the tremendous impact that varroa mites have had on the insect. These mites were first introduced to the United States in 1984 from Asia and began to feed on the bees and larvae, eating the fatty

tissues and killing the bees. This devastated the bee population, and by 1997, 98 percent of the bees originally introduced in the 1600s were wiped out. This is concerning because as bees collect pollen to make honey, they play an important role as pollinators, carrying the pollen around to different plants allowing them to reproduce. Bees pollinate over 80 percent of all flowering plants, including 70 of the top 100 human food crops. This is where beekeepers like the Svidergols play an important role. He said he is a member of many organizations working to breed stronger bee genetics to make them healthier and more resistant to mites, so they can reinvigorate the local bee populations. Svidergol talked about Purdue University mite biters, a type of

bee developed to fight back against mites and the symbiotic relationship between Syberian bees and these mites as ways to help the population deal with this issue. These small insects have such a huge affect on our food supply that we should try to support these efforts to protect them, as it is a way we can protect ourselves down the line. It is through efforts of local beekeepers and researchers across the country that these bees continue to grow stronger. If you are interested in learning more about bees or becoming a beekeeper, you can find more information on the Cambria, Clearfield and Blair County Beekeepers Association’s website, also known as “2 Cs and a Bee,� at www.ccbee.org.

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

property, up until the time an option or agreement is obtained. Appraisals for the sale of public property can be closed to the public to establish minimal bid acceptance amounts. This prohibits private discussions with individuals regarding the sale or other disposal of public property. The fifth reason is seldom used in municipal agencies, which is

the allowance for executive session for academic admissions and standings. This reason is usually used during the meetings of the boards of state-owned or related educational facilities. The final allowable reason for an executive session under Pennsylvania’s Sunshine Act is to prevent disclosure of confidential information protected by law.

This is a broad-based allowance, but the Pennsylvania courts have ruled that this provision for an executive session does not allow agencies to use the Pa. Right-toKnow Law as a basis for an executive session. Although there are more than 30 exceptions to the

Right-to-Know Law, the burden of proof is on the governmental agency to show qualification for exception from the law’s requirements. The Right-to-Know Law has an express presumption that all records in possession of government agencies are public.

Executive

employees. Discussions on filling agency board vacancies or any vacancy in elected office cannot be part of an executive session. The second reason for an executive session is for “collective bargaining or labor strategy.� This exception provides for discussion of information, strategies and negotiations related to a collective bargaining agreement, labor relations or labor arbitration. The third reason is litigation consultation. This provides an opportunity for the agency to consult with a legal professional, such as the solicitor or specially appointed legal counsel concerning present litigation or specifically identifiable complaints legitimately anticipated. This is separate and not included in the matter of “fact finding� or “informational meetings� Informational meetings closed to the public are possible with the limitation that no deliberations of any type take place. That includes the prohibition of discussing the pros and cons of the subject of the informational meeting. The fourth reason an executive session can be called for is when the agency is considering a purchase or lease acquisition of real

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MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 7


Mount Aloysius College hosts annual Camp Cadet PAGE 8 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

Andrew Smithmyer

of Mainline Newspapers

From future law enforcement officers to possible military members and those just looking for a summer challenge, teenagers between ages 12 and 15 gathered at Mount Aloysius College July 29 to begin a week of hard work, learning and structure for the 2018 Camp Cadet held by the Pennsylvania State Police. “The cadets learned about becoming a leader, being able to think and assess things under stressful situations,� said camp director Trooper Scott Urban. Urban has been part of the program since it started seven years ago, with this year’s program hosting 52 cadets. He said that the program has graduated roughly 350 campers since it started. The camp is completely free for those who are interested. Urban said the camp starts to fundraise two weeks after the program is completed. Cadets are given a hat and shirt for the week, and receive pins for accomplishments.

Land to be donated for permanent obstacle course

Campers must fill out an application for the program, and each applicant goes through an interview process. Urban said that applicants are asked a series of questions to see if the program is for them. He said 119 students applied to the camp, but for security purposes, the camp can only accept 52 cadets. The interview process isn’t only for the camp, Urban said it will help them in the future. “Everything from day one of us starting the process is helping them build,� Urban said. The program coordinators enjoy staying in touch with alums of the camp. Urban said they attend basketball and football games or any other events past campers are involved in. He said that they will help former cadets with applications for college and other future endeavors. Urban said there’s about 38 or 39 camps throughout the state, but not every county hosts a camp. If a nearby county doesn’t

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offer the camp, if the interested camper lives near Cambria County, they will accept their application. Throughout the week, various speakers and instructors taught the group and provided CPR, and “Stop the Bleed� training. The Johnstown Police Department K-



             

              

    

  

 

               

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and the group gets to show off their marching ability. Urban is excited about the future of the camp. He said Mount Aloysius is donating a piece of land on the campus for a permanent obstacle course for the program that will be completed this fall.

                 

  

      

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9 unit gave a demonstration, as well as the Pennsylvania State Police aviation and mounted units and the Special Emergency Response Team. All the events culminate at a graduation ceremony held at the end of the week, where awards to honor the cadets are given out

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Three school picture day don’ts

MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 9

Four tips to survive school supply shopping

Is the annual back-to-school shopping spree making you dizzy? Did your kids’ school send you an endless list of ultra-specific supplies to buy? Don’t panic! Here are four tips and tricks to help you shop hassle-free:

List all the supplies you already have at home. Are there any leftover binders, stacks of loose-leaf, lunchboxes or pencil cases that could be reused? By retrieving everything salvageable from previous school years, you’ll save both time and money.

1.

2. Skim through flyers to find the best prices, but don’t

go from one end of town to the other. It’s often more rewarding — and certainly more relaxing — to do most of your shopping at a single place.

3. Stick to the list and only buy the basics. There will always be time to surprise your child or buy extra supplies on sale once the school year has begun.

4. Don’t wait until the last minute to start shopping,

and hit the stores on a weekday morning if possible. You’ll be much more efficient without the stress of time crunches and chaotic crowds. If, in spite of all this, you’re still overwhelmed, online shopping might be a good option to consider. But be careful: buy from reputable vendors and read the refund and return policies carefully. Happy shopping!

For most kids, a few weeks after the beginning of class, school picture day rolls around. Are you planning on having your children don their best clothes along with their best smile for the occasion? You may want to reconsider. Here are three don’ts you should avoid for a picture-perfect picture day.

Picking out clothes that are too trendy or uncomfortable. In case your child only has their picture taken after lunch, it’s best that they wear an outfit that’s comfortable enough to move freely throughout the day. A coat and tie or a princess gown may look a bit shabby toward the end of the afternoon. Getting too creative with hairstyles. It’s risky to give your child an elaborate hairdo for their school picture. There are so many ways for it to come

undone during the day and look messy come picture time. Your best bet is a simple and natural hairstyle that your child can easily touch up if their hair gets ruffled.

Ignoring instructions. The school is sure to send you a memo indicating when school picture day will take place. Read it thoroughly, as it may contain instructions regarding what colors of clothing you should pick. If you’re not careful, your child may wind up with a white shirt against a white background.

Does the school say pictures will be taken against a green backdrop? This means you’ll likely get to choose between different backgrounds when it comes time to order the prints. To help plan your child’s outfit, take a look at the photographer’s website to get an idea of the different options available.


PAGE 10 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

CALM THE CHAOS ON BUSY SCHOOL MORNINGS

Mornings can test the patience and stamina of busy families as adults and children hurry to get out the door on time. Starting off the morning already stressed can lead to feeling tense throughout the rest of the day. There is no magic formula to make mornings less hectic, but the following are some ways families can streamline their morning routines.

• Make use of the night before. Morning madness may come about due to lack of preparation the previous night. The more that can be done the night before, the less there will be to do on weekday mornings. Encourage children to lay out clothes for the next day and take a shower or bath that evening. Make lunches the night before a school day, and gather all supplies from homework stations, restocking backpacks and gym bags so everything is ready to go come the morning. • Get to bed earlier. Sleep experts say that if you need to rely on an alarm clock to get up in the morning, you may not be getting enough sleep. The National Sleep Foundation says school-aged children should get between nine and 11 hours of sleep a night. Teenagers require between eight and 10 hours of sleep per night, while adults need between seven and nine hours. A good night’s rest can

Buy backpacks and lunchboxes, as necessary Plan lunches and snacks Label all personal items

If your kids will be walking to and from school, practice the route a few times with them

School mornings tend to be calm when certain tasks are completed the night before, everyone is well-rested and routines are adhered to.

reduce morning crankiness and get everyone moving more efficiently.

• Incentivize timeliness for kids. Children who are reluctant to head to school may need extra motivation to get out the door. Offer small rewards to kids when they get ready on their own or finish breakfast in a certain amount of time. Rewards can include a treat like choosing a favorite show to watch after school or a special outing on the weekend. • Follow a schedule. Make

mornings the same each day so everyone knows what to expect. Uniformity can streamline tasks and ensure everyone knows what’s expected of them.

• Stay organized. Racing around trying to find keys or jackets can be very stressful. Make it a point to return items to their proper places so that everyone knows where to look for the items they need.

School mornings can be challenging, but with some ingenuity and forethought, the stress can be tamed.

    

  



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Display the school calendar somewhere in your house Make arrangements for after-school care, if necessary Take part in any parent-teacher meetings

Adjust bedtime and wake-up time a few days before starting the school year Get lunch, clothes and backpacks ready the evening before the first day of class

Wake up earlier on the first day of school so as not to rush Finally, make the most of the last few days to have fun. After all, summer isn’t over yet!

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Inform the school of any health issues your children might have

Buy all the school supplies required by the school



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Make appointments with your children’s dentist, doctor and optometrist

Inventory all of the school supplies and clothes that can be reused this year

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Without a doubt, having a to-do list of things to get ready for the new school year is one of the best ways to stay organized. Here’s a checklist to help you stay on track as you prepare to send your kids back to class:

Review any school correspondence you received over the summer

     

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Law Offices of SMORTO, PERSIO, WEBB & MCGILL

129 South Center Street P.O. Box 239 Ebensburg, PA 15931

(814) 472-9603 Fax: (814) 472-5588

DINO S. PERSIO CALVIN J. WEBB, II ROGER D. MCGILL KEVIN D. PERSIO


Help kids calm first-day-of-school jitters

MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 11

Parents can help prevent bullying

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, approximately one in five students report being bullied. Most children will therefore experience some form of bullying during their developmental years, if not as victims, then as bystanders or perpetrators. While schools have an important role to play in helping to eradicate bullying, parents too must become advocates of treating others with kindness and respect. Here are a few ways moms and dads can help prevent bullying.

Help kids identify bullying behaviors Bullying can be exhibited physically or verbally, but also as a type of social behavior (mimicking, making faces, spreading rumors, acts of exclusion, etc.). Bullying can also occur as harassment perpetrated online (cyber bullying). In all cases, bullying involves acts of aggression on an ongoing basis and is based on a real or perceived imbalance of power. Parents who discuss bullying in all its forms with their children are arming them with the capacity to recognize and report the behavior if it occurs.

Teach kids to take a stand against bullying Bullying behavior rarely occurs in isolation. More often than not, it’s a group phenomenon with a number of students involved as either participants or onlookers. But research indicates that almost 60 percent of bullying situations come to a halt when a peer intervenes on behalf of the bullied student (Hawkins, Pepler, and Craig, 2001). Teach your kids that they can make a difference by being an advocate for others. Model how to treat others One of the most powerful ways parents can help prevent bullying is by modeling appropriate behaviors. When parents treat the people in their lives with courtesy and compassion, their children often follow suit.

Preventing bullying is more likely when parents actively take action to prevent it. The most important thing they can do is talk to their kids and keep the lines of communication open.

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The first day of school can be an exciting time, especially for children who have never before attended school. But even youngsters excited about the first day may also experience some jitters. Such nerves are normal, and parents can help kids calm those jitters in various ways. • Talk about the first day as it approaches. A child’s first day of school is a milestone, and parents may do various things to commemorate the occasion. The excitement leading up to the first day can spark kids’ enthusiasm, but it also may lead to some anxiety about the unknown. Parents can quell those fears by discussing the first day as it approaches.

• Let kids choose their own clothes. Parents may be tempted to buy special outfits for their children for the first day of school. But kids who are jittery about their first day may calm down if allowed to choose their own attire for the big day. • Get a head start on your morning routine. As summer winds down, begin acclimating children to the morning routine they can expect when the school year begins. One to two weeks before the first day of

school, start waking children up when they will need to be up for school.

• Attend school orientation events and plan some play dates in advance of the first day. Seeing familiar faces might make kids forget all about their jitters when they arrive at school on the first day. Inquire about school orientation events and attend as many of those sessions as possible.

• Start the day off on the right foot. The night before the first day of school, make sure kids’ outfits are clean, their supplies are packed and ready to go and their lunch is made. The less parents have to rush around on the morning of the first day of school, the calmer kids are likely to be.

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Smart tips for school bus safety

PAGE 12 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

SCHOOL HYGIENE TIPS

Children are in close contact with others at schools and daycare facilities, where germs can be easily transmitted. Children may not be as conscientious as adults in regard to the health risks associated with poor hygiene. These tips can keep students stay healthy and help prevent germs from being transported home, where they can affect other members of the family. • Hand washing is essential to good hygiene. Children should wash their hands with soap and water after using the bathroom, before eating and after playing outdoors. • Children can bring along their own tissues and use them when their noses become runny. Tissues should be promptly discarded after use.

• Parents should ensure that fingernails are clean, as under the fingernails can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Clipping fingernails and regular hand washing can remove a number of germs.

  

   

       

    

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• Keep ill children home from school, especially if they have a fever. Kids should not return to school until they are fever- or symptom-free.

• Toys and community supplies should be washed or disinfected regularly to kill germs. Cleaning classroom furniture regularly also can help establish healthy educational environments.

Do your children ride the bus to school? Before it’s time to head back to class, take a few minutes to remind them of the following safety guidelines:

• Head to the bus stop early, without running, and wait calmly, away from the road and traffic. • Don’t approach the bus until it has come to a complete stop. • Use the handrail to get on the bus. • Do not shove other students. • Sit down quickly. • Place your backpack at your feet, under the seat, or on your knees. • Throughout the ride, stay calm: don’t get up, don’t yell and don’t bother the driver. • Before leaving your seat, make sure the bus has come to a complete stop. • Get off in a single file, while holding on to the rail and without pushing others. • Take two big steps once you’re off the bus to move away from the

danger zone. If you drop something, do not pick it up. Let the driver know or ask an adult for help. • If you need to cross the road, take ten big steps forward so that the driver can see you. Make eye contact with the driver and wait for their signal. Look left, right and left again before crossing quickly, but don’t run. • Go straight home, without any detours or delays.


MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 13


DEADLINE: TUESDAY AT 10 A.M. CALL (814) 472-4110 FAX: 472-2275

MISCELLANEOUS FOR SALE

USE DD-33 to control fleas and ticks on dogs and cats topically. Kough Feed Service. 814-743-6723. www.kennelvax.com.

APARTMENTS FOR RENT

2ND FLOOR, 3 BEDROOM: Studio, spacious living room. 2 bath. Kitchen, utilities & appliances included. No pets. Call 814-472-9354.

COUPON: 3 bedroom apartment/ house. Please call for more information. 943-2398. CRESSON TOWNHOUSE: 97 High St. 1.5 bath, laundry room, fully equipped kitchen, gas heat, central air. No pets. $575/month +plus utilities & security deposit. 814-505-5216. CRESSON: 2 bedroom townhouses, close to town, Mt. Aloysius & St. Francis. No smoking, no pets. Call Archie at 814-886-2100. Century 21 Strayer & Associates. CRESSON: 2 bedroom. $350/ month plus utilities. LILLY: 3 bedroom. $600/ month, includes heat. 814-9341531. EBENSBURG: 1 bedroom. All utilities except electric. Suitable for 1 working adult. No pets/ smoking. 4728897. EBENSBURG: 2 bedroom. Heat, water, sewage, garbage included. No smoking/ no pets. Call Kevin, 4727707. EBENSBURG: Small and large 1-2 bedroom, 2-bedroom townhouse with 1.5 bath, all include heat/water/sewage/garbage, off-street parking. No pets. Storage available. $460$850/month. 471-0462. GALLITZIN: Four 2 bedroom apartments. Two 1 bedroom apartments. Section 8 Housing. Call Tom 814-9353636. HASTINGS: 1 bedroom, first floor. Includes heat, water, sewage, appliances. No pets. $365/ month. 814247-8676. LILLY: 1 bedroom. Heat, water, sewer, garbage included. $450/ month. Security deposit. No pets. 814-8864651. PORTAGE: 1 bedroom, no pets. $300 +deposit. 814-495-4009.

APARTMENTS FOR RENT

Thursday, August 9, 2018 • Page 14

MARKET STREET COMMONS IN JOHNSTOWN: 1-2 bedroom apartments available. Utilities included. 814-536-6122 for details. Equal Housing Opportunity.

NANTY GLO: 2 bedroom, 2nd floor. Heat, water, sewage, garbage included. No pets. Security. $550. 814-7497206. NORTHERN CAMBRIA: 1-bedroom, 2nd floor. Everything included except electric & water. No pets. 814-9513976. PORTAGE: 2 bedroom, first floor. Main St. Includes stove, fridge, washer/ dryer hook-up, newly remodeled. $375 +utilties. No pets. 814-2415252. PORTAGE: 2 bedroom, no pets. Newly remodeled. $400 +deposit. 814-495-4009. PORTAGE: Main St. 3 bedroom, $595. 2 bedroom, $495. All utilities included except electric. Security deposit. No pets. 814-330-6294.

COMMERCIAL FOR RENT

EBENSBURG: A little over 4000 sq. ft. 601 W. Lloyd St. Call Kevin 4727707.

HOUSES FOR SALE

NANTY GLO: 3 bedroom ranch home, 1.5 bath, large 2 car garage, large living room, new furnace, private backyard, large deck, all appliances included. $70,000. 814-2544771, leave message.

EBENSBURG: Building for rent. Office or business. 1253 N. Center St. Off-street parking. 3 bathrooms. 1200 sq. ft. 1 mile from center of town. $700/ month, includes water/ sewage. 814-471-0462. PATTON: Office for rent. Completely remodeled. Excellent high visibility location. 814-674-5806.

PORTAGE: Small 2 bedroom, 1 bath, single story house on nice corner lot. New carpet, paint, includes handicapped ramp. Appliances included. No basement. 1400 Gillespie Ave. $49,000. 814-341-6943, 814-3416915. Texts not answered.

HOUSES FOR RENT

MOBILE HOMES FOR SALE

EBENSBURG: 2 or 3 bedroom. Large kitchen. Back yard. 814-4726806.

EBENSBURG: 3 bedroom, 2 bath. 16x80. Wise Trailer Park. 231-3575977.

MOBILE HOMES FOR RENT

COMMERCIAL FOR RENT

  

EBENSBURG INDUSTRIAL PARK: 7,500 sq. ft. building. Prime location. Great for medical or professional offices, light manufacturing, assembly. Reasonable rent. Ample parking. Available Sept. 1. Call 814-472-6685.

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CRESSON: 330 Laurel Ave. Fri. 8/10, Sat. 8/11. 8-2. CRESSON: 406 Linden Ave. 8/11. 8:30-1:30. Girls clothing 4-7, womens & mens clothing, brand names, American Eagle, Gap, Arizona, and a lot more! Rain date 8/18. EBENSBURG: 2-family. 124 Sylvan Glen Dr. 8/10, 8/11. 8-4. Tools, hunting, fishing, crossbows, household items, pool table, trailer, snowmobiles, strollers, car seats. EBENSBURG: Moving sale! 1326 Lemon Drop Rd. Everything must go! Follow signs. 8/11. 8-4.

We accept cash, check, Visa or Mastercard.

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CRESSON: 133 Apple Dr. 8/10, 8/11. 8-? Girls clothing 0-4T, baby items, & more!

RENT/ OWN: Cherry Tree, $325/ month, +deposit 2 bedroom homes. No pets. 814-743-5291.

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MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 15

HELP WANTED

GARAGE/YARD SALES

EBENSBURG: Tibott St. 8:30-4. 8/10, 8/11. Something for everyone.

HASTINGS: 525 Murphy Spring. Sat & Sun. 8/11, 8/12. 247-8181. NANTY GLO: Aug. 10-11. 9-5. St. Nicholas Church Hall. Back to school/college clothing, houseware, tons of misc. NANTY GLO: Back to school sale! 660 Fords Corner Rd. Girls Justice clothes (5T-12), boys/ mens (UA, Nike, American Eagle, jeans, shirts, sneakers), tons of toys, Christmas items, tires and rims, front loader washer, and much more. 8/10-8/12, 8-3. NORTHERN CAMBRIA: Aug. 9-11. 8-4. 588 Nicktown Hill. Adult/ children clothing, table and chairs, luggage, lamps, lawn furniture, toys & more! NORTHERN CAMBRIA: Big, big garage sale! 398 Cabbage Rd. 8/11, 85. Furniture, tools, baby items, antiques, large selection of beer steins, all new items! YARD SALE/ BAKE SALE/ LUNCHEON: Revloc Presbyterian Church. All proceeds go to church. 8/10, 8/11. 8-4. Something for everyone!

HELP WANTED

AIDES AND COOK: All shifts. Apply within at Rebekah Manor in Ebensburg, Northern Cambria, Portage. 814-472-6868.

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HELP WANTED

AT-HOME TYPIST NEEDED: Must be able to type min 50 wpm. Highspeed internet connection required, no dial-up. Paid on a per page rate with a flexible schedule offered. Please email resumes to: service@sargents.com or call (800)727-4349. EOE. CARE AIDE, PART-TIME HOUSKEEPER wanted at personal care home in Cresson. Call Debby at 8867961. CHURCH CUSTODIAN: Needed in Salix. Call for details. 814-487-7654.

HELP WANTED

CAREGIVERS AGENCY: Background check and TB test required. All shifts. EOE. 814-266-5337.

   

 

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DIRECT SUPPORT PROFESSIONALS for intellectually disabled adults. Competitive hourly wage. Part-time and full-time available. All shifts. 814-410-6197. EOE.

CDL DRIVER CLASS A: A locally owned company is offering an excellent opportunity for a CDL-Class A Driver. Monday through Friday with an occasional overnight trip. Home all weekends and holidays. Interested applicants please fill out application at Seven D Industries Window, 977 DeGol Industrial Drive, Hollidaysburg, PA 16648 or email resume to: rneuhart@7dindustries.com.

   

   

CRESSON TOWNSHIP is accepting applications for a part-time laborer. Must have a valid driverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s license with a clean driving record. Please send resumes to: 771 Portage Rd., Cresson, PA 16630.

HELP WANTED

  

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PAGE 16 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

HELP WANTED

EQUIPMENT OPERATOR/ CDL TRUCK DRIVER: Full-time with benefits. The Clearfield Township Supervisors will accept applications for the position of Equipment Operator/ CDL Truck Driver through the month of August until the position is filled. For application, please call Lynne Thomas at 814-674-8166.

FULL-TIME OFFICE MANAGER/ INSURANCE BILLER for busy medical office. Email resume to appt@rizzochiropractic.com. IMMEDIATE OPENING for Compassionate Caregiver who has a passion for providing excellent care to the elderly. Applicants need to pass criminal background checks. Apply in person at St. Stephenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Living Center, 1075 Chestnut Street, Nanty Glo, PA 15943 or call Debbie at 814749-8799. INDUSTRIAL ELECTRICIAN: Altoona/ Johnstown. 814-479-4346. ronda@shroyerco.com.

HELP WANTED

ITALIAN VILLAGE PIZZA in Ebensburg is now accepting applications for ALL POSITIONS: Morning and night. Applicants must be reliable, high energy and friendly, must possess reliable transportation. Previous restaurant experience is a plus. If interested, call 472-2202 or inquire within. Apply in person. LAKE INN SEEKING COOKS, BARTENDERS & SERVERS for days and evenings. Apply within. 814-4729400. LIBRARY DIRECTOR: 35 hours per week. Director is responsible for managing and performing all operations of the library. Applicants must have at least 60 college credits and 9 credits in library science. Prefer bachelors degree and 9 credits in library science. Send resumes including three references by August 17 to Cresson Public Library Board of Trustees, 231 Laurel Ave., Cresson, PA 16630.

       (,! )%%$&( &*' #  )"# &* #, ' )&&#(!, ' # %%!#(' $& ( %$'($#' $ '#(! &* $& &' ($ '''( %$%! +( #(!!()! '!(' +( *&,, !*# ' !!' +(# $)& #, + '(&(# + '  %& $)& %%!#(' ")'(  ( !'(  ,&' $  # *   '$$! %!$" $&  #(' '$)! !'$  ! ($ $(#   #  !&#' # *  *!  &*&' !#' # $# $#)' $& #+ "%!$,' (&  ,'



 $"#$ ( % ( !!(  $ &&&#$(#%!! "$$ "        $"% "   $   ! " # "#% $   '   "    

HELP WANTED

LOCAL TRI-AXLE DRIVERS WANTED: Must have experience. 4721007.

MARTIN GENERAL STORES: Now hiring at Ebensburg, PA. Fast pace with emphasis on great food & friendly service. 40 hour opportunity. $9 per hour with 50¢ shift differential for 3rd shift. Flexible schedule, paid time off, heating oil discount, tuition reimbursement, uniforms. EOE. Drug free workplace. Applications available at www.martinoilco.com or at Ebensburg Martin General Store. NOW HIRING COOKS, BARTENDER & HOUSEKEEPING: The City Hotel. Apply within. EOE. PART-TIME NURSE AIDE (2nd & 3rd shift) and DIETARY/ HOUSEKEEPING (1st & 2nd shift) positions available at Saint Benedict Manor, Inc. Apply and get more information in person at 600 Thatre Road, St. Benedict, PA 15773. EOE. WAITRESS & COOK: Beaver St. Cafe, Hastings. Apply within.

HELP WANTED

OPEN TEACHING POSITIONS NORTHERN CAMBRIA CATHOLIC SCHOOL PA CERTIFICATION REQUIRED FOR ALL TEACHERS. All candidates must submit a letter of interest, resume, PA Standard Application or Diocesan Teaching Application, college transcripts, PA Certification, three letters of recommendation (two profession, one from pastor), current (within five years) Act 151, Act 34, and Act 114 clearances, Mandated Reporter Certificate and Act 168 Employment History Check. All documents can be found on the Diocesan website under the Education Office page. â&#x20AC;¢ Social Studies Teacher (Grades 5-8) â&#x20AC;¢ Music Teacher (Part-time Position) â&#x20AC;¢ Spanish Teacher (Part-time Position) Send complete applications to: Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, Education Office, 933 S. Logan Blvd., Hollidaysburg, PA 16648.

Mainline Newspapers 975 Rowena Drive P.O. Box 777 Ebensburg, PA 15931

Phone: 814-472-4110 Fax: 814-472-2275 Email: mainlinenews@verizon.net

HELP WANTED

TRANSPORT DRIVERS WANTED: Health Ride Plus, Inc., a Specialized Passenger Transportation Company, is accepting applications for van drivers throughout Cambria, Clearfield, Blair and surrounding County areas. Regular Vehicle, Wheel Chair and Stretcher Van Drivers needed. Job involves driving company vehicle for the transportation and assistance of clients to and from medical appointments and other related services both in and out of county. Transports range from local routes to long distance travel. Ideal candidates must have ability to work a full shift, show up to work on time and work overtime as needed. Driver, EMT, or Customer Service Experience helpful. Paid training and cell phone reimbursement provided. Starting training wage is $8.25 per hour with a pay increase after 90 days and annual performance increase opportunities. Benefits available for full-time employees after 90 days. 401K plan with company match and paid time off after 1 year. Must be over the age of 25, be dependable, responsible, have a clean driving record and be able to pass pre-employment background check and drug screening. Apply in person at 406 Magnolia Street, Northern Cambria, PA 15714, online at www.healthrideplus.com or through your local CareerLink.


MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 17

SERVICES

TREE TRIMMING, REMOVAL, STUMP GRINDING: Free estimates. Call Jake Miller 814-937-5318.

HELP WANTED

THE NORTHERN CAMBRIA SCHOOL DISTRICT is seeking a certified teacher to provide individualized instruction in the areas of English and Math for the 2018-2019 school year. The instruction will be provided in the school setting for a minimum of 2 hours per day. The pay will be $31.00 per hour as outlined in the Northern Cambria Education Association Bargaining Agreement. Send PA Standard Application, Letter of Interest, Resume, Transcripts, PA Certificate, Acts 24, 34, 114, 151 and 168 to Mr. Robert Rocco, Superintendent of Schools, 601 Joseph Street, Northern Cambria, PA 15714. Applications must be received by 12:00 noon, Friday, August 17, 2018. EOE.

Classified Ad Rates: $7 for the first 10 words 50¢ for each additional word Classified Deadline: Tuesday at 10 a.m.

HELP WANTED

THE PORTAGE WATER AUTHORITY is accepting applications for two full-time laborers to work in the distribution system. Some other requirements include: a PA driverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s license, pass a mandatory drug test, physical and be able to get to the Water Authority within 30 minutes for emergency response time. Applicants shall be willing to work seven days a week, be on-call and outside work will be required. Send letters of interest, qualifications and salary requirements to Portage Water Authority, 606 Cambria Street, Portage, PA 15946 by Thursday, August 23, 2018.

PETS

FREE RESCUE KITTENS: Facebook: Patricia Henry. 419-8656.

SERVICES

AMAZING MECHANICAL BULL RIDES, BOUNCIES, MAGICIANS FOR RENT! Awesome fun! 814-9382346.

SERVICES

GREG PETRISKO MASONRY & REMODELING: Brick work, chimneys, block work, foundations, siding, metal roofing & shingle roofing, decks, electrical work, new electrical services. Free estimates. 814-322-7535. HARBAUGH ELECTRIC: Quality workmanship at affordable rates. Fully insured. 814-743-6166. R&S CLEANING: We haul anything! Cleanouts! Houses, apartments, garages, storage bins, $50 to $75. Lawn care. Fully insured. PA contract #080816. 330-0150.

SERVICES

RICKâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S REMODELING/ HANDYMAN: All home improvements and paint, wallpaper, siding, decks/ ramps. PA#045341. 814-886-5504.

SABELLA PAVING: Parking lots, driveways, sidewalks, repairing/ sealcoating. Free estimates. PA #041032, 948-8330. SHAFFER TREE SERVICE, LLC: Tree removal, tree/shrub trimming, stump grinding, fertilizing, landscaping. Free estimates, fully insured. Owner Rick Shaffer 736-4168.

GOT A VIRUS? BROKEN SCREEN? Technology not working? Call/ text 814-615-7810. Free estimates.

WANTED

PROPERTY YOU NAME IT WE BUY IT! Want to sell your property? Then give us a call, we will buy your house, apartment building, warehouse, land. 814-979-7426.

  

 

    

*() '"$  %' (# &'"

SAVE $10 TWIN SET

SAVE $20 FULL SET

SAVE $30 QUEEN SET

SAVE $50 KING SET

   

     

      

(814) 472-7470

%$!*'(  '"  ) 


Portage Boro building still not compliant with sewer ordinance PAGE 18 - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - MAINLINE EXTRA

By Ron Portash

of Mainline Newspapers

The Portage Borough Council met Aug. 6 for their regular monthly meeting. At the meeting, public comment centered around the number of sump pumps installed in buildings affected by the recently completed sanitary sewer system in the borough. One point of discussion, brought up by borough manager Bob Koban, was that the borough building itself is not in compliance with the final ordinance deadline of July 17. The borough has no intention to comply with their own ordinance until a stormwater line can be installed in the alley behind the borough building and connect to the stormwater line at Caldwell Avenue. No timeline has been discussed concerning the start of this project. Several commercial buildings on the same side of Main Street have completed the new required sewer connection and have roof drains and sump pumps directing water flow into the alley. This, however, has created an ice build-up problem in the alley during the past several winters. The borough’s plan is to construct the stormwater line to collect the sump pump and roof runoff water from those buildings and, eventually, from the borough building. Although the project was primarily focused in the Third Ward of the borough, from Caldwell Avenue to Johnson Avenue and from Main Street down into the township, buildings

on the upper side of Main Street, including the borough building, were also required to connect. The original deadline to connect was Nov. 15, 2017, which was one year from completion of the new sanitary sewer line project in the borough and township. The deadline was extended to May 15 due to the shortage of qualified contractors. The heavy spring rains delayed work in many locations, so the Portage Sewer Authority extended the deadline to July 17. On July 16, work began on one of the three sewer connections in the borough building. The connection in front of the fire company’s equipment bay was dug up and connected. The required pressure test to pass the connection was arranged just hours before the deadline. However, the borough building has two other sewer laterals in the building, though one is planned on being disconnected and capped. The other connection includes a sump pump still connected to the old sanitary sewer line. One reason the Portage Sewer Authority has a growing problem with stormwater infiltration into the sanitary system is because sump pumps and roof drains were connected to the old system, forcing the authority to treat more stormwater as sewage wastewater. The Pa. Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has increased restrictions for stormwater infiltration and increased enforcement in many municipalities. The sewer system that services the City of Johnstown and several

surrounding municipalities is under consent orders to fix and remove stormwater from the sanitary sewer system there. The Portage Sewer Authority attempted to stay ahead of having DEP force the authority to make extremely costly changes to the system by starting this project in 2016. The original plan was to convert the old sanitary sewer line in the Third Ward into a stormwater line to funnel the stormwater in the lower end of the borough. The borough passed an ordinance in 2014 in anticipation of the new sewer line replacement project. Chapter 18 section 203 of the Portage Borough Code of Ordinances states, “It shall be unlawful for any person to connect any rain leader, roof drain, downspout, gutter, parking lot drain, driveway drain, garage drains, interior or exterior sump, French drain, spring or other collector or source of surface stormwater, including, but not limited to, the fresh air vent of the improved and sewered real property’s sanitary sewer to the sanitary sewer system.” This ordinance was adopted Aug. 4, 2014. At the Portage Sewer Authority’s July meeting, property owners violating the conditions of the deadline were discussed. Less than 20 buildings out of over 300 buildings in the borough were not connected to the new system as required by the final deadline. The authority’s position is that since properties are already connected to the old sewer line, the authority will dig up the non-compliant sewer line

where it connects to the main line in the street. The non-compliant sewer line will be capped, so no sewerage can pass into the old main sewer line. The property owners will be billed for the work, material and a set 10 percent additional fee as provided in the rules and regulations. The property owner will not be able to use sewer service until a proper connection to the new sewer main line is connected and passes testing. A lien will then be placed against the property for the line capping costs. A property lien stays with the property until it is paid and a satisfaction notice is filed to release the property. The estimated cost of capping a sewer line in the street can easily exceed $5,000. According to the authority’s decision, the lien must be paid in full before service can be restored through the newly installed and pressure tested sewer lateral. Water service can be disconnected to prevent sewer usage to non-compliant buildings in the borough. If the buildings, including the Portage Borough building, fail to complete the connection to the new sewer line, the sewer authority may face significant fines because certain portions of the old sanitary sewer line are to be converted into a stormwater line that will discharge into the Little Conemaugh River. If the connections are not completed, the authority could be fined by DEP for dumping untreated sewerage into the river. These fines could force the sewer rates to rise for all of the authority’s customers.


MAINLINE EXTRA - Thursday, August 9, 2018 - PAGE 19

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