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MAI NLI NE newspapers

Vol. 165 No. 12

USPS 166680

Ebensburg, Pa.

Ebensburg Borough moves forward with water plant contract

By Gina Bianucci

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The Ebensburg Borough Council was approached with a proposal for the borough’s wastewater contractor to take over operations of its water plant at the council’s Oct. 28 meeting. Borough manager Dan Penatzer said that Inframark, the borough’s current wastewater treatment plant operator, had submitted a proposal to assume responsibility of the water treatment plant in the same manner in which they operate the wastewater treatment plant. Services at both plants would be combined into a single three-year contract. The current contract with Inframark was allowed to expire two years ago, but the borough has continued the company’s services on a year-toyear basis. Originally, since the issue involved the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) matters, the council planned to meet in executive session to discuss the proposal. However, the council ended up discussing the issue openly. AFSCME did have issues with collective bargaining agreement, but those concerns had been adequately addressed prior to the meeting. When the borough had first contracted through Inframark, then called Severn Trent, the borough employees working at the sewer plant accepted positions with them and became Inframark employees. SEE CONTRACT, PAGE 3A

New work zone speed enforcement in place Vehicle owner will be responsible for violations

By Ron Portash

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On Nov. 1, The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) began a two-month pilot period for the new statewide Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement (AWZSE) program to improve safety for drivers and highway workers, reduce work zone speeds and change driver behavior. “The Automated Work Zone Speed Enforcement program isn’t about issuing violations, it’s about saving lives,” said PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards. “Last year, 23 motorists were killed in a Pennsylvania work zone. Through this program, we are urging motorists to slow down and pay attention while driving, especially in work zones where roadway conditions can change on a daily basis.” AWZSE was created by the state legislature as Act 86 of 2018 for a five-year period. During the two-month pilot program, automated speed enforcement units using “LIDAR” and automated cameras will be

deployed in a number of active work zones on Pennsylvania’s highways. During the two-month pilot program, no citations will SEE SPEED, PAGE 4A

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Lewis Ripley recalls Army service during the Cold War

‘It’s a maturing experience, being in the military’ was trained to fight on skis in the winter and would be considered a special forces unit The United States and the today. The term special forces Soviet Union (USSR) had unit wasn’t adapted in the fought alongside each other military until the Kennedy during World War II to administration. defeat the Axis powers. “Our purpose was to be preHowever, the relationship pared to fight against any between the two nations enemy who came across the became strained in the years Bering Strait from Russia,” after the war. The USSR’s Ripley said. expansion into Eastern While Ripley’s regiment did Europe had many nations, not see battle, the men spent including the United States, their time preparing themanxious about the rise of selves for a possible invasion. Josef Stalin and communist He said days were spent conrule. This anxiety further tinuously training for engagLewis “Lew” Ripley Jr. increased during the Korean ing in battle. War, when the USSR backed Ripley recalls excursions the communist North Korean People’s Army, north toward Fairbanks, where his regiment and during the “arms race” as both nations would spend days and nights in the field most worked to develop ever-more-destructive of the time. Much like the famous dog sleds weapons. used in the Arctic, men in the regiment found During this time, the U.S. military height- themselves pulling sleds loaded with equipened its presence both domestically and ment. Ripley said three men on skis would abroad, and Ebensburg native Lewis “Lew” pull each sled, while a fourth man would Ripley Jr. was one of the men vigilant in his work the brakes. duties to protect American soil. “We were in place of the dogs,” he said. After spending two years at Penn State He said his regiment also worked in constudying for his bachelor’s degree, Ripley junction with tank units, and if both units had decided to join the Army. He attended basic to move fast, he and the others would find infantry training at Fort Knox, Kentucky, and themselves hitching rides on the tank’s “fendcompleted advanced training at Fort Ord, ers,” which he recalls as a dangerous and California. scary experience. Following his training, he became a member Spending time in Alaska also prepared of the 53rd infantry regiment attached to the Ripley to handle extreme cold. He described 71st infantry division stationed at Fort much of Anchorage’s weather as pleasant, but Richardson, located just outside of SEE RIPLEY, PAGE 5A Anchorage, Alaska. Ripley said his regiment By Kristin Baudoux

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Central Cambria High School senior Rhys Long (center) has been designated as a Commended Student by the National Merit Scholarship Program. To earn this status, Long placed in the top 50,000 of over 1.5 million students nationwide who entered the 2020 National Merit Program by taking the 2019 Preliminary SAT / National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Along with receiving this designation, the Cambria County Commissioners and U.S. Congressman Glenn “G.T.” Thompson presented Long with certificates of recognition for his achievements. Those honoring Long include president commissioner Tom Chernisky; Brian Subich, representing Rep. Thompson; his father, Heath Long; his mother, Candy Long; high school principal Christopher Santini; and commissioner B.J. Smith. Absent from photo is commissioner Mark Wissinger. Photo by Kristin Baudoux.

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