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M A I NLI NE newspapers
Vol. 159 No. 26
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Middle school property attracts potential buyer Since 1853
Newsstand Price 75¢
Board passes necessary budget measure By Ian Wissinger
of Mainline Newspapers
Central Cambria’s monthly meeting of the Board of Directors usually begins with a verbal report, delivered on behalf of both the middle school and high school’s student councils, sharing information on various events that have occurred and reminding those in attendance of similar events and fundraisers on the horizon. On the evening of Monday, Jan. 14, student representatives celebrat-
ed a myriad of past successes, including a food drive that yielded over 650 non-perishable food items for the Ebensburg Food Pantry, and a box top collection that netted over 4,300 (which will, in turn, benefit the school’s library). National Honor Society students from the high school also participated in Red Kettle Campaigns, hosted by the Salvation Army, for the second year in a row, raising money for families in need during the holiday season.
Admiral Peary looks to pare down energy costs
SEE BOARD, PAGE 3A
Act 39 could yield savings for district
By Ian Wissinger
of Mainline Newspapers
Isaac Stevens and Vincent Micco, fourth-graders at Cambria Elementary, determine which household items best conduct electricity. The exhibit was one of 40 brought to the elementary school by Penn State Altoona’s Science Outreach program. For the related story, see page 5A. Photo by Ian Wissinger.
Union reps address SCI employees By Justin Eger
of Mainline Newspapers
Even now, inmates are being transferred by the busload from the State Correctional Institution at Cresson, and dispersed throughout the state prison system in preparation for the opening of SCI Benner in Centre County. As such, it comes as little surprise that there isn’t a whole lot of time left for SCI Cresson and its employees, and even the expected closing date of June 30 might be a lot longer than is actually needed by the Department of Corrections to make the closing of facilities in Cresson and Greensburg a reality. The clock is ticking for employees of SCI Cresson, who were asked early last week to decide where in the prison system that they would want to go. On Jan. 16, an impromptu meeting of SCI’s unionized employees with the PA State Corrections Officers Association was held at the Sankertown VFW. While many employees were notified of the 6 p.m. gathering, still others learned of it only from local news reports covering the meeting, and trickled in over the course of the discussion. What they (and we) learned was not all that heartening, and even as some com-
plained about being offered the survey, union officials made it clear that offering some comment, any at all, was better than simply discarding the paperwork. “If you don’t fill out the survey, you will be furloughed,” said Robert Storm, vice-president of the PSCOA. “And that’s just a fancy word for layoffs.” Storm and PSCOA president Roy Pinto stressed that the union is working diligently on behalf of the employees at SCI Cresson and SCI Greensburg, trying to limit the impact that these closings will have on the SCI families and protect as many jobs as pos-
sible. Unfortunately, those jobs might not be in any place that staff members might want to go initially. “We’re working on protecting your rights of recall,” Storm explained. “If, for some reason, SCI Cresson would reopen, you would all be called back. It’s not a done deal, but it’s what we’re trying to do.” But even then, Pinto and Storm pointed out, it was unlikely that anything could be done to save SCI Cresson. The decision had already been made, and with
By Ian Wissinger
solicitor, and L. Robert Kimball, as represented by Engineer Cameron Mock, will continue to aid the borough in the new year, an instrumental partnership in the renovation and overhaul of the Ebensburg area's water system. First National Bank of Ebensburg will serve as the authority's depository. Meeting times, traditionally scheduled for the third Monday of each month, at 4 p.m., will remain in place, the board confirmed. After establishing these designations, the board moved swiftly into its regular Monday, Jan. 21 agenda, which included a full update on the aforementioned water project.
Before launching into its busy agenda on the evening of Thursday, Jan. 17, the Joint Operating Committee of Admiral Peary Vocational Technical School investigated possible energy cost and building maintenance savings, options that were presented to the board by Joe Hudak, a representative of Constellation Energy. Hudak had been invited to the meeting by Executive Director Ken
Jubas and Business Manager Jeff Vasilko, with whom he had held a prior conference on the possibility of renovating utility fixtures within the Admiral Peary complex. Constellation Energy works primarily with homes and businesses. Last Thursday, Hudak announced to the board that, based on preliminary figures, his company could save the district as much as $500,000 – and possibly more – over the next 15 years. SEE ENERGY, PAGE 3A
Ebg. Municipal Authority maintains status quo of Mainline Newspapers
Though the Ebensburg Municipal Authority must reorganize at its first regular business meeting each year, officials took a simple approach to this task, and proposed that the status quo remain in place for 2013, a solution that met with unanimous approval. Chairman Jerry McMullen, who was recently granted a five-year term extension by borough council, will reprise his role, as will Vice Chairman Colman Anna. Michele Bonerigo will remain in place as the authority's secretary and treasurer. James Stratton will continue providing his services as
SEE SCI, PAGE 2A
SEE AUTHORITY, PAGE 2A
Work in progress
An engineer from Cambria System, Inc. of Sidman installs a conduit for the Ebensburg Water Treatment Plant’s new supervisory control and data acquisition system, a component of the Ebensburg Municipal Authority’s capital water project. Submitted photo.