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Clearfield County/Penn State DuBois, Receives $725,850 from Appalachian Regional Commission

DuBOIS — On Tuesday, Clearfield County, on behalf of the North Central PA (NCPA) LaunchBox and Penn State DuBois, was awarded $725,850 by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) to develop and strengthen the region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem by attracting talented entrepreneurs and innovators, support manufacturing competitiveness with technical training opportunities, advance industry innovation through research and development initiatives, and serve as the convener to facilitate partnerships with and between business, education, industry and economic and community development stakeholders.

“Clearfield County is excited to be part of this regional effort to expand resources that all business owners, large and small, can utilize to strengthen their companies and workforce,” said Clearfield County Commissioner John Sobel. “We believe that the NCPA LaunchBox will boost our economy, as well as our six neighboring counties, fill our downtown storefronts with entrepreneurs and help our large companies compete on a global level by driving innovation and collaboration.”

Today’s announcement is one of 54 investments totaling $44.4 million via ARC’s POWER (Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization) Initiative, a congressionally funded opportunity targeting federal resources to help communities and regions that have been affected by job losses in coal mining, coal power plant operations, and coal-related supply chain industries due to the changing economics of America’s energy production. Additional support for the NCPA LaunchBox is provided by Penn State University and a large group of resource partners involved in services provided to business and industry in the North Central region of Pennsylvania.

“Penn State President Eric Barron’s commitment to entrepreneurship and innovation has made the Invent Penn State initiative an incredible resource for anyone looking to start, grow or improve their business,” said Penn State DuBois Chancellor M. Scott McBride. “Penn State DuBois is one of 21 innovation hubs being developed by Penn State campuses across the state. This funding will help the North Central PA LaunchBox serve a diverse population and boost the region’s economy.”

The NCPA LaunchBox will be located in downtown DuBois and will host resource partners such as Clarion University Small Business Development Center, Northwest Pennsylvania Industrial Resource Center and Ben Franklin Technology Partners. Through Invent Penn State and the LaunchBox program, start-up businesses can receive expert legal, intellectual property and business advice at no cost.

“I congratulate Clearfield County and Penn State DuBois for being a FY 2019 POWER grantee and commend them on the leadership they have shown in their community,” said ARC Federal Co-Chairman Tim Thomas. “POWER grants are playing a critical role in supporting coal-impacted communities in the Appalachian Region as they diversify economies, invest in growth-oriented infrastructure, train a next-generation workforce, and ingrain resiliency and hope into their local fabric. Projects like this help ensure a prosperous future for Appalachia.”

One major focus of the program will be in the field of metal manufacturing. Penn State DuBois strives to be the leader in innovation and collaboration when it comes to developing service for the local manufacturing industry. The three main services available in our Innovation Collaborative will be a Makerspace, Research and Development Services and a Technical Training Center. These three services will help uphold the long, local tradition of our region’s ability to practice excellent production routines, solve problems and develop a highly skilled workforce to support the local, national and global economy.

“The ARC was great to work with and there are so many people who have helped to make this grant award happen,” said NCPA LaunchBox Director Brad Lashinsky. “Our federal and state legislators helped support this application from the beginning and Clearfield County devoted a lot of time from county Planning Director Jodi Brennan to write the grant and serve as the administrator as we move forward. Other organizations like our state Department of Community and Economic Development and the North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission helped guide us in the process.”

About the Appalachian Regional Commission, The Appalachian Regional Commission (www.arc.gov) is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.


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Jeff Tech art students, Hollidaysburg artist install Reynoldsville Hometown Mural

REYNOLDSVILLE — Jeff Tech (Jefferson County Vocational Technical School) art students and Holidaysburg artist Deb Bunnell have been hard at work creating a vibrant mural in Reynoldsville.

Jeff Tech art and mathematics instructor Angela Dragich said the installation of the Reynoldville Hometown Mural on the Reynoldsville Hardware building began during the last weekend of September.

Hollidaysburg artist Deb Bunnell started the 2018-2019 “ArtsPath” artist residency at Jeff Tech in January, where she worked with students in the school’s art room. The idea of the residency, Dragich says, was to encourage collaboration between Jeff Tech and the Reynoldsville community through the creation of a mural.

Bunnell then returned to Reynoldsville recently to install what she and Jeff Tech students painted in March.

The mural is also a community effort, with Rick August of A&R Tree Removal and Trimming, donating his time and equipment, such as bucket trucks and a scissor-lift, to the project. Bunnell’s husband, Roger, also joined in to help.

Kenny Spicher with Jeff Tech custodial/maintenance helped prepare the wall for the installation process, power washing and priming it, then sealing the door with plywood. Cooperative education students Troy Frederick and Travis Kalgren helped him do this, Dragich said.

The mural project, funded by Jeff Tech and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, will feature several panels representing Reynoldsville landmarks and events such as The Ticklebelly Bridge, Red, White and Blueberry Festival, Reynoldsville Fire Department, the U.S. Airmail Tower and Arrow from the 1920s, the Reynoldsville Rollerdrome, Falcons football and Bulldogs soccer teams, and Jeff Tech’s viking mascot.


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BOLD AND BRASSY: Gramercy Principal Quintet and Friends entertains DACCA audience

DuBOIS — Gramercy Principal Quintet and Friends entertained the audience of the DuBois Area Community Concert Association Sunday in the auditorium of the DuBois Area Middle School with their bold and brassy show.

The Gramercy Principal Quintet and Friends, comprised of five or more principal members of the 28-member Gramercy Brass Orchestra of New York, performed before a packed house for nearly two hours.

Gramercy Brass Orchestra of New York stands out as a leading force in the world of brass entertainment, combining the traditions of brass band with the flexibility of its members who are drawn from the communities of professional jazz, pop, Broadway and concert music performers.

Founded by music Director John Henry Lambert in 1982, Gramercy Brass Orchestra has fueled audience excitement from its roots in the Gramercy/Flatiron neighborhood of NYC, to major concert stages, such as Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard, and the Majestic Theatre in Gettysburg.

The Gramercy Principal Quartet performance was the first show of the DACCA’s 2019-20 season. The DACCA is a non-profit organization that has been bringing artists and audiences together in the DuBois area for more than 57 years.

The next concert will be at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 1, and will feature Live From Nashville, A Merry Country Christmas. The joy of Christmas comes to the audience in this production of toe-tapping, heartfelt music of the holidays.

Adult season tickets are $50, patron memberships are $75, and include one season ticket. Sponsor memberships are $250 and include four season tickets. Benefactor memberships are $400 and up and include six season tickets. Names of patrons, sponsors, and benefactors will appear in the concert programs and in a power point presentation at the concerts. Gift certificates are available. Children 18 years and under are admitted free with a ticket holder (limit three).

For additional information, contact Frank Foulkrod at 371-1764.


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Sandy Twp.
Sandy Twp. rejects sewer tap fees resolution

DuBOIS — A sewer tap fees resolution was rejected by the Sandy Township Supervisors at Monday’s municipal authority meeting but tabled at their regular meeting.

During the municipal authority meeting, township Engineer Perry Bowser said, according to sewer service agreement with the city, the township is required to pay a tapping fee of $1,626 per EDU to the city for all new construction connecting to the city wastewater treatment plant but located within the township. Existing structures are exempt from this tapping fee, the agreement states.

The motion to accept the sewer tap fees resolution failed in a 2-3 vote. Voting in favor were supervisors Mark Sullivan and Kevin Salandra. Voting no were supervisors Jim Jeffers, who is chairman of the board, Andy Shenkle and Dave Sylvis.

“I’m going to say nay at this time until we look into it a little more,” said Jeffers.

“We’ve already agreed to it,” said Salandra, referring to the 30-year sewer service agreement between the city and the township. The agreement was effective Sept. 1.

“I was under the understanding that was the one fee and only fee,” said Jeffers.

“If we don’t continue to charge our tap fee, we would have to pay out of our own fund,” said Bowser.

The township’s tap fee is $1,330 plus the $50 application fee.

“So we’re in essence raising our tap fee from $1,300 to $2,900 for any new construction; that I’m not in favor of,” said Sylvis.

“We’ve already agreed to it,” said Salandra.

“I can agree to the $1,600 if you’re going to give it to the city in your agreement, but I don’t agree with double dipping. I’m sorry, but that’s my vote,” said Sylvis.

“It’s going to slow construction down,” said Shenkle.

“The nays have it at this point,” said Jeffers. “I believe we can bring it up at the next meeting after doing a little more research on it.”

Bowser said even though the resolution failed to pass, the township will still have to pay the $1,626 per EDU tapping fee.

Sullivan noted the township would not be in violation of the agreement.

“We’ll just lose money,” said Sullivan.

“The nays have it at this point, so I believe it can be brought up again,” said Jeffers. “When the manager gets back, we will have a more detailed discussion.”

Manager Shawn Arbaugh was excused from Monday’s meetings. During the regular meeting, the supervisors tabled taking any action on the resolution.

Sewage planning exemption The supervisors unanimously approved a sewage planning exemption for Adamson Funeral Chapel Crematory, 1312 Chestnut Ave., at both meetings. Dennis Adamson, owner of the funeral chapel, proposes the addition of a 30 foot by 50 foot crematory and a 40 foot by 40 foot reception hall.