Just what was the exact cause of a fire which extensively damaged a Berwick business Thursday night. That's what a state fire marshal will try to determine as he goes through the rubble of Consolidated Container on 7th Avenue... in the BIDA Complex. The fire began around 6:30 when workers returned power to a machine after some maintenance downtime. Fire departments up and down the Susquehanna Valley were called in. The more than two dozen employees working the second shift escaped unharmed. Consolidated Container serves the automotive, food and dairy industry with plastic bottles.
Barletta Chairs Hearing
Two years after the flood produced by Tropical Storm Lee... Congressman Lou Barletta still isn't happy with the response of the federal government. He chaired a hearing Wednesday... dealing with the re-authorization of FEMA. Mr. Barletta let it be known that FEMA's response was inadequate for some... especially in the area of so – called low cost loans. The federal government eventually dropped the interest rates for the loans... but during a recent talk in Bloomsburg... Barletta said Pakistan was also given loans for similar flooding... with no payback expected.
They've talked about it for the past two years... and now it appears the Columbia – Montour Chamber of Commerce and the Columbia – Montour Visitor's Bureau are exploring operational partnerships. Chamber President Fred Gaffney says there are efficiencies found in day to day operations... as well as staffing. Gaffney did stress Chamber offices in Danville... Berwick and a central location in Bloomsburg will remained staff... emphasizing service to some 6-hundred members is top of mind.
Fair / Economic Impact
How much of an economic impact does the Bloomsburg Fair have on the area. No exact figures are known... but a team of Bloomsburg University students are determined to find out for the Columbia – Montour Visitors Bureau. The Bureau's Otto Kurecian says the students will be talking to vendors.
Kurecian said final numbers won't be out for some time... but the impact spent by vendors for goods and services... and hotel rooms... is expected to be in the millions of dollars.
Gordner / Corbett
A recent Franklin and Marshall College poll says Governor Corbett could be in danger of losing next fall's gubernatorial election. At last count... there were anywhere from six to a dozen Democrats who want to replace Mr. Corbett. But, State Senator John Gordner of Berwick says the Governor can get reelected. Meantime, both Senator Gordner and State Representative David Millard says although his budgets have been unpopular... tax revenue has been able to fund them... and taxes have not been raised since Corbett took office.
In our midweek check of pump prices... The cost of a gallon of self – serve, unleaded regular is holding steady across northeastern Pennsylvania. The Triple – A Fuel Gauge report shows gas is averaging 3-54 a gallon... the same as it was earlier this week... but down six cents a gallon from a week ago.
Nine people have to find another place to live now that flames forced them from their Tamaqua home... in Schuylkill County. The fire broke out before dawn Wednesday morning in a row home along the 100 block of Coal Street. Although no one was injured... but a dog and three cats died in the flames. Cause of the fire in Tamaqua remains under investigation.
Three Shamokin – area residents escaped their burning home in Northumberland County early Wednesday morning. Crews made their way to the home at 3836 Upper Road in Gowen City where three people lived. One adult got out... a second adult and a child pulled to safety by neighbors. All were taken to Geisinger - Shamokin hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation. First responders said the fire in appears to be an accident, sparked by an electrical problem.
Winners of their first two games and ranked 13th in the nation, the Bloomsburg University football team plays at Kutztown Saturday. The Golden Bears have lost their first two games, but their wide open passing attack led by freshman quarterback Alec Werner concerns Huskies coach Paul Darragh. Bloomsburg at Kutztown kicks off Saturday at 1 O'clock. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins at 12:30 with the Husky Countdown Show.
In the NFL Thursday night, former Eagles coach Andy Reid makes his return to Philadelphia as his Kansas City Chiefs play the Eagles.
In baseball last night the Miami Marlins defeated the Philadelphia Phillies 4 to 3 to wrap up their three game series. The Phils are idle Thursday. Friday night they begin a home series against the New York Mets.
In other games last night... the Pittsburgh Pirates were defeated by the Sand Diego Padres 3 to 2... the New York Mets just getting by the San Francisco Giants 5 to 4... and the New York Yankees downed the Toronto Blue Jays 4 to 3.