Today’s news – Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Quote for today … “ … countries such as Australia are far ahead of the United States in delivering preventive care and trying to curb such harmful behaviors as smoking. We are falling behind our competitors in health.”Extracted from this Washington Post article about life expectancy in the U.S.

A second quote for today … The current reality is that ‘transparency’ remains prominent in mission statements and news conferences, but conspicuously absent in meeting rooms.” – From today’s LNP – Always Lancaster editorial entitled “In the dark.”


  • The room was crowded at the onset of the Borough Council meeting. As the evening wore on the those with specific interests left. Last night, the seated councillors interviewed two citizen applicants for the vacated councillor position necessitated by the resignation of Sherry Welsh. A third applicant was not in the gallery. Marilyn Kress Hartman was selected and assumes the position that expires in January 2018. Kress Hartman’s name is one on the Unofficial Candidates for Public Office for May 16, 2017 Municipal Primary In Ballot Order.

hartmanMarilyn Kress Hartman was appointed to fill a vacant council seat at last night’s meeting. Kress Hartman is a real estate agent. She and the other applicant, Robert B. Thompson, said they wanted to be councillors because they are pleased with the progress the borough is making and they want to contribute to that success.

  • The borough will be seeking input in response to a “Request for Expression of Interest” that will be issued sometime soon. The intent is to have an entity or an individual suggest uses for these existing properties: Borough Hall, the Market House and the vacant structure on Front Street that had housed the former Columbia No. 1 Fire Company. The mayor expounded on an idea to consolidate the Borough offices and the Columbia Borough School District offices and consolidate in the School District’s building. He said it’s important that Columbia Borough demonstrate its willingness to be proactive when applying for state grants and funds. Nothing is set in stone, the borough is simply looking for opportunities and options.

council meeting collectionLast night’s meeting agenda lists the depth of topics covered including (1) acknowledging the coordinated life-saving response of Columbia’s first-responders in a cardiac-arrest incident; (2) a follow up presentation about the re-use potential of the sewage treatment plant; (3) the installation of two citizens on the planning commission; (4) the announced rate schedule and naming of the Columbia Trolley Works; (5) the announcement that five applicants will be interviewed for the position of trolley driver and much more as listed on the Borough Council Meeting Agenda.


  1. During council’s interview of realtor Marilyn Kress Hartman, she was asked to elaborate as to why it’s difficult to sell homes in Columbia. She said it’s the taxes, which surprised me because we were led to believe that it’s due to the negative articles and comments on social media. Apparently the high taxes are really to blame! It appears that the taxes have more power than social media.

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