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  #981  
Old Posted Dec 23, 2006, 1:12 PM
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^ great site bucks, thanks. I had no idea Pittston is looking at redeveloping its waterfront. Very cool. The city certainly needs it.
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  #982  
Old Posted Dec 24, 2006, 1:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bucks native View Post
Go here, look under projects: http://www.facilitydesignltd.com/
Thanks BucksNative...what a juicy website! This firm has a ton of projects...from buildings to large sacel planning, e.g.the South Valley
project....sorely needed for poor Nanticoke & environs.

I'm impressed with the program for W-B's intermodal tranportation hub and the Murray complex looks like a winner as well.....big job. It should be a terrific anchor for the SE edge of Central City.

I see that they are doing Scranton's NJC RR depot and 6th Avenue project.

Well, I asked for renderings and you delivered! I had a ball poking around their site at the various proposals......
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  #983  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2006, 12:34 PM
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website

You're welcome, guys. Just doin' my civic duty, no?

Looks like 2007 should keep us busy.

Happy New Year to us all.
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  #984  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2006, 2:42 PM
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****SEASON"S GRRRRRRREETINGS ! ****

[I]******Merry Christmas !!!![******/I]
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  #985  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2006, 3:27 PM
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Merry Christmas guys, hope you have a good one.
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  #986  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2006, 1:32 PM
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Lookin' for work?

Anyone?


12/26/2006
Proposed medical school begins search for dean
BY CHRIS BIRK
STAFF WRITER


A momentous first for the region also brings the promise of a rare opportunity — provided you’re a rock star of a physician with impeccable credentials.


Advertisement


The proposed Medical College of Northeastern Pennsylvania would be the first allopathic, or M.D.-granting, school built in the U.S. since 1982. It would also give one stellar doctor the chance to build and shape a medical school from scratch for the first time in more than two decades.

The exhaustive, cross-country search for a founding dean is well under way, and stakeholders behind the medical school hope to make a decision in February. Navigating through a relatively small pool of possibilities, thanks to a host of stringent criteria, those leading the search are looking for a dynamic leader with an interest in trailblazing.

The winner gets a mountain of hard work.

“It probably needs somebody who has enough experience that we have confidence in them, but has not become hidebound by the traditional approaches to medical education,” said Robert Wright, M.D., chairman of the Medical Education Development Consortium, the local group of politicians, physicians and others who led the charge for school. “We’re going to be trying new things. The person that we hire has to have characteristics of the entrepreneurial type.”

Envisioned as independent and regional, the Scranton medical school is expected to serve 360 students and have an annual operating budget of $25 million. The movement already has $60 million in place from the state and Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania, representing more than half the $75 million to $85 million officials estimated would be needed to build a “bare-bones” school.

A hunt for new funding sources, private and public, is running concurrently with the search for a founding dean.

Behind the dean search is John K. Thornburgh, vice president of the executive-search firm Witt-Kieffer and son of former Gov. Dick Thornburgh. The national firm specializes in finding top executives in the fields of health care and education.

Armed with a long list of prerequisites and qualifications, Thornburgh is scouring medical schools and other institutions for interested and qualified candidates. Prospects must have an M.D. degree and an exemplary track record of fundraising, education and clinical care.

They also need to be prepared for a major shift from the norm. Unlike other more established or university-affiliated medical schools, the Medical College of Northeastern Pennsylvania will not have gobs of money and an entrenched infrastructure.

“A lot of the people who are in medical education today in big schools are very comfortable with the infrastructure of large organizations and big staffs. They may be uncomfortable in this environment,” said Thornburgh.

The college has been pitched as an economic boon that would stimulate spending of $46 million a year and help to create 550 high-paying jobs in the region by 2015. By 2025, the school is expected to generate a $54 million economic impact and 900 local jobs.

Business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit are also key attributes, said Thornburgh.

“Certainly within medical education, you have to stay within boundaries. But there is a real chance to do everything, including building a new culture,” said Thornburgh. “You don’t have to live by some other institution’s ground rules.”

Necessary qualifications

A 13-page position specification outlines the criteria and the scope of the opportunity awaiting the school’s founding dean.

Among the laundry list of necessities identified by the search firm are four leadership opportunities:

n Recruiting a leadership team

n Building partnerships in the community as the champion of the school

n Developing and leading a long-term funding plan

n Building a culture of excellence.

“The founding dean will have the unique opportunity to build an institutional culture ‘from the ground up,’” the document reads in part. “This will provide the chance to build an appropriate sense of camaraderie, collegiality and genuine goodwill in an organization whose members will be dedicated to the interests of community medicine.”

It’s difficult to pinpoint how many people might meet the qualifications from the ranks of current school deans, associate deans or department chairs, which is where the consortium’s search committee is focusing.

But, so far, officials are emboldened by the response.

Thornburgh declined to offer specifics or a count of those who have expressed interest. Wright said he believed the number was around 35.

“We have had a very encouraging response, both in terms of numbers, but more importantly, in terms of the type of people who check a lot of the boxes that we’re looking for,” said Thornburgh. “We will be very careful in making sure there’s going to be a good fit personally between the candidate and in many cases their family and the Northeastern Pennsylvania region.”

Interviews are tentatively scheduled for next month.

cbirk@timesshamrock.com
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  #987  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2006, 2:17 PM
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Well, I was gonna apply, but I heard Dr. Vinnie Boombots has the inside track.
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  #988  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2006, 4:16 PM
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^^^Aw, be a sport, EXXy... GO FOR IT...Your chance be to be a Scrantonian!
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  #989  
Old Posted Dec 27, 2006, 1:50 PM
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More about reclaiming coal lands, the demand for it and the mucho acreage at stake.....Luzerne County alone has 211 sites involving 10,000+ acres....


12/24/2006
Mine-scarred land well-positioned
BY DAVID FALCHEK
STAFF WRITER


Today’s culm banks and strip mines could be the sites of tomorrow’s industrial parks or entertainment venues.

Local economic developers hope new federal legislation will hasten the reclamation of mine-scarred land and unlock the economic potential of thousands of dismal acres in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

Some of the region’s most cherished economic assets, Wachovia Arena, Hanover Industrial Estates, the Valley View Industrial Park, all sit on formerly mine-scarred lands that have been cleaned up and brought back into use.

Recent federal legislation changes the formula for distributing mine-reclamation funds collected through a per-ton coal surcharge. Historic mining states such as Pennsylvania, with older and deeper scars, will receive more money to clean up their sites. Pennsylvania could end up receiving about $10 million more dollars a year, adding to the current average of $25 million.

“These resources are critical to our economy,” said Larry Newman, a vice president of the Greater Wilkes-Barre Chamber of Business and Industry. “The majority of our most appropriate potential sites for development and growth are former mine lands. Reclaiming them has a huge potential return for anthracite counties.”

In many cases, scarred, abandoned mine lands and collieries are sleeping economic giants and well-positioned for economic development. Many valley communities sprang up around collieries. Much of the region’s abandoned mine lands are near the population centers they once supported. Major roads and utilities are usually nearby.

Mine reclamation typically involves grading and leveling, which can be a massive undertaking for former strip mine land with pits more than 100 feet deep. A stream channel is then created and the area seeded.

The average cost of reclaiming mine land is $8,000 to $10,000 per acre, said Robert E. Hughes, abandoned mine land program manager for the Luzerne Conservation District. But some areas that require a lot of earth moving and replanting could cost upward of $40,000 per acre, with sites needing environmental work costing even more.

Luzerne County has 211 sites encompassing 10,466 acres. Lackawanna County has about half as much mine scarred land — about 5,481 acres.

“In Lehigh Valley they start with a corn field to develop,” said Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce president Austin Burke. “In Northeastern Pennsylvania, we have a massive amount of work to do just to get our land to a place where it’s ready for development.”

There’s also a cost of doing nothing. Black mountains of culm, expanses of strip pits, and rusting, decaying collieries could stop people or businesses from moving into an area.

Communities stuck with the anthracite legacy miss out on tax dollars from more productive uses of the land. The pits, shafts and massive buildings are dangerous. The gloomy remains take a psychological toll on residents.

The unavailability of land forces development to sprawl into green space, resulting in forests being clearing or farmlands eliminated.

The state receives between $22 million and $25 million a year for reclamation, more than half of which ends up in the anthracite region, Mr. Hughes said. The new federal law could increase that amount to $37 million a year, which can then be leveraged with state money and federal environmental grants.

“We are going to receive a nice shot in the arm,” he said.

In Archbald, the federal government recently awarded a $2.3 million contract to reclaim several hundred acres for the second phase of Valley View Business Park, which will encompass a total of 1,700 aces when completed.

Several major reclamation sites in the Luzerne County are now thriving business parks and commercial centers, including Highland Park and Hanover Industrial Estates. A private developer is working on Whitney Point Industrial Park outside Nanticoke.

There is much, much more. Mr. Burke estimates there could be 2,000 acres of mine land along Route 6 between Scranton and Mayfield that would be suitable for development. In Luzerne County, the former Glen Alden Coal Co. lands, about 16,000 acres, have barely begun to be reclaimed.

Contact the writer: dfalchek@timesshamrock.com
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  #990  
Old Posted Dec 27, 2006, 2:33 PM
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That sounds like a lot of money, but with the amount of land (not just in NE PA) which needs work, it may take a while. Still any extra helps, and can make a difference in a small town trying to rebound.
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  #991  
Old Posted Dec 27, 2006, 3:43 PM
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I was wondering again if Vasiliy has left SSP for good. He hasn't posted for over 2 months. I hope he's OK.
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  #992  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2006, 1:55 PM
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Yeah Vasiliy....you okay? Hope you'll 'drop by' to say howdy to this motley crew.....
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  #993  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2006, 3:39 PM
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EeeeeTeeeeee.......Come....Hoooome........

But seriously, a familiar problem faced by many older cities

12/28/2006
Scranton hoping to get those who left to return

BY DAVID FALCHEK
STAFF WRITER

Rediscover Scranton aims at professionals
The Rediscover Scranton project will market the region to the thousands who were raised or educated in the area but moved elsewhere: primarily executives, professionals and those in the creative industry.
Here’s a look at some components of the plan:

Rediscover Scranton. A 30-minute DVD featuring interviews and images about the region’s economy and quality of life.
Launching a Web site. The Web Site www.rediscoverscranton.com offers updates on what’s happening in the area and allows people to sign up or enlist their friends.
Presence on blogs and cyber-communities. A version of the material will be included in online communities such as MySpace, www.myspace.com/rediscoverscranton, and Facebook.
Reaching reunions and events. Marketing materials will be available to local colleges and other groups hosting reunions.

Pitch presents city attractions to rediscover

Over the last generation, Scranton’s most valuable export has been youth and talent.

Local officials hope to stem the tide by marketing the city to legions who left the area through a new program called “Rediscover Scranton.”

About 200 people gathered at the Lackawanna Trolley Museum on Wednesday night to hear the pitch developed by the Scranton Plan, the marketing arm of the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce.

Organizers are asking local residents to submit contact information of friends and relatives with connections to the area. They would be e-mailed good news updates about the city and in some cases, organizers hope, may move their families or business to the area.

“We have the product, and now we have the people,” said PNC Bank President Peter Danchak “You are the sales people that will make this effort a success.”

One of those sales people would be Julianne Kalasinski, a 24-year-old Abington Heights High School graduate who worked in Philadelphia after earning a degree from Villanova University. She returned to take a job in marketing and public relations for nonprofit United Neighborhood Centers.

Many of her Abington classmates are in tony Philadelphia suburbs and are surprised to hear how well she, and Scranton, are doing. “They don’t know that there are challenging jobs in the area — you have to look harder for them,” she said.

Even people who left a few years ago may not know about recent developments, noted The Times-Tribune Publisher George Lynett, who cited the new airport, the proposed medical school, the Yankees Triple-A team, Mount Airy Lodge and the University of Scranton student center.

“And a quality of life we all take for granted,” Mr. Lynett, a Scranton Plan co-chairman, said.

Rediscover Scranton has 2,000 contacts in its database and hopes to double it within a few months as it works with local people and shares information with local colleges and universities.

Youth flight is nothing new to Northeastern Pennsylvania. The exodus of the young began soon after World War II. As the local economy reeled from the demise of the anthracite mining industry, the rest of the United States boomed. With little local opportunity, sons and daughters left Northeastern Pennsylvania, a drain that hasn’t stopped.

Contact the writer: dfalchek@timesshamrock.com
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  #994  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2006, 8:22 PM
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Sounds like they want you back dony. Come on, give it a look.
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  #995  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2006, 11:55 AM
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return?

Won't happen with its wage tax - almost as high as Philadelphia's. I've been advised to locate in Dunmore or Clark's Summit/Green.

I can't find the source of this famous quote, but it does hold true: "If you want to get rid of something, tax it."

Last edited by bucks native; Dec 29, 2006 at 12:11 PM. Reason: add quote
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  #996  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2006, 11:05 PM
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^^^ Ay prospect that a more favorable rent in Scranton city (as opposed to more expensive bedroom areas) would offset the city tax burden?
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  #997  
Old Posted Dec 31, 2006, 2:54 PM
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2006...... Lots of developing business for Wilkes-Barre, Wyoming Valley and Luzerne County...very positive stuff, including the noted 140 condos pledged for DT Wilkes-Barre to be complemented by possible 80 more across the river in Kingston (and niche Indian Museum), as well as units proposed for N. Main St. near King's College & the conversion to condos od much of the genetti hotel on East Market St.

Overall, a wonderful year...with more to come!

...............Posted on Sun, Dec. 31, 2006 ................

Expansions, additions and companies hit the mark
HEALTH CARE IS HOT

Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center broke ground for a 136,000-square-foot critical-care building that will increase the hospital’s space by 45 percent. An expanded emergency department will occupy the first floor, and the second floor will be dedicated to larger operating rooms.

Geisinger officials hope improvements to emergency services will result in a designation as a trauma center. Community Medical Center in Scranton is the only hospital in Northeastern Pennsylvania holding that status.

Construction is expected to take two years.

Wilkes-Barre General Hospital announced a three-year, $100 million upgrade of services and facilities that will nearly triple the emergency care department and expand the cancer treatment, cardiac, surgery and other medical and related services during the next three years. The project will add 160,000 square feet of space on three floors.

Substantial gifts from John and CeCe McCarthy and Charles and Mary Parente will help fund the construction of the new critical-care pavilion and cancer center.

Community Medical Center and Moses Taylor Hospital said in December they would form the Northeast Pennsylvania Healthcare System, largely aided by $50 million Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania designated for the union. Blue Cross also committed $40 million to the General Hospital project.

Nurses were the beneficiaries of heightened competition between Geisinger and Wyoming Valley Health Care System, operator of Wilkes-Barre General Hospital. In January Geisinger Wyoming Valley nurses ratified an agreement that contained salary increases ranging from 5 percent to 12 percent, 10 months before the existing contract was set to expire.

Geisinger and the Service Employees International Union District 1199P began meeting after nurses in the Wyoming Valley Health Care System approved a five-year contract in October 2005. That contract gave nurses at General a 22 percent salary increase over the life of their contract.

Not all the 2006 news was positive. In June, HealthNow closed its facility in the Twin Stacks Center in Dallas, putting 163 people out of work. HealthNow blamed the closing on the loss of a contract with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

HealthNow had moved to Dallas in October 2005, signing a three-year lease. The firm had been located in the Kanjorski Center in Nanticoke, and had processed Medicare claims since September 2000.

BIG BUSINESS

BREWING

The self-proclaimed “Supermarket to the World,” Archer Daniels Midland Co., announced in April that it had chosen the Humboldt North Industrial Park outside of Hazleton as the site for a $95 million, state-of-the-art cocoa processing plant that will employ more than 200 people. The Decatur, Ill.-based company expects to begin operations at the 500,000-square-foot plant in mid-2007.

Cardinal Glass Industries began operations at its 176,000-square-foot plant in the Crestwood Industrial Park. The Eden Prairie, Minn. company invested $20 million in the facility that produces glass for window and door manufacturers.

The plant is expected to employ 130 workers when running at full capacity.

Bedding giant Sealy Corp. said it will hire 107 people at an average annual salary of $33,000 for its new factory in the Crestwood Industrial Park. The Archdale, N.C., company is investing $30 million into the factory on Elmwood Road.

The company broke ground in April and expects the 210,000-square-foot facility to be operating in the first quarter of 2007.

Pepsico said it will invest more than $30 million into doubling its Gatorade operation in the Crestwood Industrial Park. The food-and-beverage giant plans to build a 500,000-square-foot distribution center across the street from its Oakhill Road manufacturing plant and hire about 100 more workers.

The Mountain Top plant has been making and bottling Gatorade since the 1980s. It employs 240 people.

Coca-Cola North America has plans for a plant on 65 acres in the Humboldt North Industrial Park. The land was purchased from HDP Asset Co. Two, Humboldt North Land LLC and PH Investors LLC for $6.5 million.

A Coca-Cola spokesman said the plant will produce non-carbonated beverages. The company’s strategy calls for plant expansion to meet demand need in the Northeast region beyond 2010,

Men’s Wearhouse stores began hiring for a leased 300,000-square-foot distribution center that is expected to open in February in the CenterPoint Commerce and Trade Park.

The base staff will number slightly more than 200 and increase with temporary workers during the peak wedding season. The center will be a full-production facility with dry cleaning, laundry and packaging operations on site

REAL ESTATE SPIKES

Downtown and out of town, action picked up in the commercial real estate market.

The former Premium Brands property at Wilkes-Barre Boulevard and Coal Street sold in February for $1.3 million. “We had three buyers for this property at the same time,” said John Cognetti, president of Scranton-based Hinerfeld Realty Co. “I think it’s a sign that indicates the industrial/commercial market in the Wyoming Valley and the whole region is very strong right now.”

Equilibrium Equities Inc., a Conshohocken-based company, broke ground in August on a 240,000-square-foot building in the Humboldt Industrial Park East. An Equilibrium official said it was the firm’s first new speculative development project in the market. The company also owns property in the Mid-Valley Industrial Park and the Key Market Distribution Center, both in Lackawanna County.

The former American Furniture building on East Northampton Street, Wilkes-Barre, sold for $395,000 on Nov. 9, eight months after an Allentown developer paid $200,000 for the property.

The new owner, Sterling Ventures LLC of Great Falls, Va., plans to lease out the property, which is located across the street from Wilkes-Barre Movies 14.

Condominiums became the buzzword in residential housing, with several development projects announced or in various states of completion.

In downtown Wilkes-Barre, 50 residential units will be built inside the Sterling hotel building at West Market and North River streets; the theater project at South Main and East Northampton streets has up to 28 loft-type units earmarked for the second and third floors; 60 condominiums are proposed in the former Murray Complex at Ross Street and South Pennsylvania Avenue.

Murray Complex developer Daniel Siniawa also is building an eight-story, 108-unit townhouse project on the Pittston riverfront.

In the Back Mountain, high-end condos at Dakota Woods in Dallas Township and in Marina Pointe at Harveys Lake sold for $300,000 or more.

FAMILY VALUES

Good news wasn’t confined to big business – several local family-owned firms distinguished themselves in 2006.

Bill Williams, who oversees the operations of Jack Williams Tire Co., Inc., with a 100,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution center in Moosic, 24 stores and 352 employees, was named Tire Dealer of the Year by Modern Tire Dealer, the industry’s leading publication.

The 62-year-old Larksville resident was chosen from among 25,000 eligible independent tire dealers in North America. He donated an $8,500 cash award that comes with the honor to the Bill and Sandi Williams Family Charity Fund.

Earl Berger, patriarch of Hazleton area Berger Family Dealerships Inc., was recognized as a finalist for the 2006 TIME Magazine Quality Dealer Award. He was one of two dealers from Pennsylvania and among the 66 nationwide who were nominated.

Berger, 63, got his start when he bought the dealership where he started selling used cars in 1967. He’s transformed Wright Motors on Route 93 into a string of showrooms bearing his family name and expanded the menu to eight franchises.

Campus Square Billiards, which opened in October at 53 Public Square, was named the seventh-best new billiards parlor in North America, according to Billiards Digest magazine. The trade paper’s 18th annual architecture and design awards appeared in its November issue.

HERE ‘N’ THERE

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport had an up-and-down year. A stylish but frequently delayed passenger terminal finally opened in May, capping an $80 million expansion project. But only two months earlier, Hooters Air ceased flying, five months into a contract set to run through September. The charter airline had begun flying to Florida destinations in October 2005 with the help of $325,000 in federal, county and airport funds.

The passenger count suffered through much of the year; for the first six months, boardings dropped 7.4 percent to 103,048 compared to 111,234 from January through June 2005. Traffic recovered later in the year, and by November the year-to-date falloff was halved to 3.7 percent.

In January, the airport’s managing board signed a five-year lease with LPV Enterprises Inc. of Scranton, a company owned by Leo Vergnetti, the airport’s restaurant and bar operator since 1979. Airport director Barry Centini said no other vendors were considered. The airport asked Luzerne and Lackawanna counties to contribute $1.2 million to build out the concession area for Vergnetti, who was responsible for finishing the space.

Unemployment rates fluctuated around the 5 percent level all year, from a low of 4.6 percent in January, up to 5.5 percent in May and back to 4.7 percent in October. The service sector provided more than 80 percent of the jobs and showed modest growth.

Developer Robert K. Mericle and his family donated land and construction worth $2 million to build a simulated miniature village in Pittston Township where children will be able to spend a day as working adults in order to understand the challenges of stretching a paycheck or meeting a company’s bottom line.

Mericle is donating about 3 acres off Oak Street near Convention Hall and constructing the facility, including the interior walls, at his own expense for this Junior Achievement-run program.

Lamar Advertising in February unveiled its first digital display billboard on the Cross-Valley Expressway in Pringle. The billboard, which can carry six advertisers’ messages in rotation, uses light-emitting diode technology, or LED, a semiconductor device. Lamar’s regional office sends artwork to the corporate headquarters in Baton Rouge, La., which forwards it electronically to the designated billboard.

Community Energy, developer of the wind farm operating on Bald Mountain in Bear Creek Township, was acquired in May by IBERDROLA of Spain, the world’s leading wind energy company. President Brent Alderfer said the sale would give Wayne-based Community Energy buying power and financing for growth.

Jeff Dreier, co-owner of Dreier Auto Sales in Shavertown, took the reins as president of the Pennsylvania Independent Automobile Dealers Association. The association turned 50 last year and has 1,800 members, making it the nation’s fourth largest.

Five regional firms were included on the 2006 list of 100 Best Places to Work in PA. Among the 50 honored companies with more than 251 employees, Pride Mobility Products Corp. of Exeter earned 17th place, Benco Dental Co. of Wilkes-Barre was 28th, and Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania came in 48th. Hazleton-based Troy Manufacturing Inc., a maker of over-the-counter and personal care products, reached No.8 and Solid Cactus, a Wilkes-Barre e-commerce Web site developer, landed the 21st ranking in the 25-250 employer category.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Editor’s note: There was a lot of positive local business news to report in 2006, starting with two major hospital additions. Several national firms announced plans to begin operations or to expand, and established businesses were honored for their outstanding performance. Here are a few samples.
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  #998  
Old Posted Jan 1, 2007, 7:00 AM
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So much positive news and projects for W-B, it's been a special year. Congrats.
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  #999  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2007, 1:21 PM
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The actor Paul Sorvino is actively looking at Scranton & area to site film studio....we shall see......shant we?

01/02/2007
Sorvino considering Taylor for film-making facility
BY ROGER DUPUIS II
STAFF WRITER

TAYLOR — Picture it: A former coal town reborn as Tinseltown east.

The scenario is not quite as far-fetched as it might sound. Actor and producer Paul Sorvino, who’s looking to build a $12 million to $15 million film production facility in Lacka-wanna County, joined local officials for a tour of the former colliery property here last week, part of efforts to find a site for the project.

“Certainly no decision was made,” Mayor Richard Bowen said. “Let’s put it this way: We’re on the right path to be considered.”

County commissioners A.J. Munchak and Robert C. Cordaro said the Taylor site is only one of several Mr. Sorvino is considering for his facility, though Mr. Cordaro said it’s too early to talk about the other locations.

The studios would be privately financed, using tax abatements and land secured much like an industrial development project.

Mr. Sorvino has been in talks with the governor’s office, along with county and municipal officials, regarding land acquisition and aid for the project. He also has been in talks with private investors, Mr. Cordaro said.

The actor’s plan is to build a complex of six sound stages, with room to add up to six more as business expands. The stages, roughly 100 feet wide by 100 feet long and 60 feet tall, would be big enough to construct houses or small buildings inside, and would be complemented by dubbing labs and other facilities necessary to complete a production. It also could include a live-action theater.

Mr. Sorvino will soon wrap up filming on “The Trouble with Cali,” a movie he’s producing in Northeastern Pennsylvania with $500,000 in funding from county government.

If Mr. Sorvino finishes editing it early this year, as planned, he’d like to begin work on the studio project as early as the spring, a timetable he previously called “ambitious, but possible.”

Whatever the outcome of those plans, his tour of the colliery was welcomed by borough officials. They’re eager to redevelop the site — about 150 acres — with new houses, businesses and a scenic walking trail, once the property is cleaned and a creek channel restoration and culvert project are completed. All that could take six to 10 years, the mayor said, and inquiries from a high-profile person like Mr. Sorvino should be a boon.

“All of this is good for the borough,” Mr. Bowen said.

“It’s going to be another downtown for Taylor,” he added. “The borough has been crying out for more retail space for many years.”

Contact the writer: rdupuis@timesshamrock.com
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  #1000  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2007, 11:42 AM
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Ex-Ithacan Ex-Ithacan is offline
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OK dony, once you move back to the Scranton area (post #993), if things don't work out in your field of endeavor, you can always fall back on the acting thing with Paul and the boys.
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