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Local News

Thursday, February 17, 2011
CONTRIBUTED PHOTO Thomas D. Rodgers

On Jan. 7, 1986, the day Jim Thorpe native Thomas D. Rodgers, all of 18 years old, enlisted in the U.S. Army, then-President Ronald Reagan imposed economic sanctions on Libya amid growing tensions between the United States and Libyan leader Moammar Khadafy.

"I needed to find a job," he said.

Twenty-four years, three foreign countries and four medals later, Staff Sergeant Rodgers retired, on Nov. 1, 2010.

Thursday, February 17, 2011
CHRIS PARKER/TIMES NEWS Twenty-four people recently took volunteer training to help out at the Panther Valley Public Library, 117 E. Bertsch St., Lansford. Volunteers will be helping with library programs, shelving books, checking books in and out, helping with fund raisers, filing, cleaning, and using their talents to promote the library. Beginning in March, a homework help desk will be manned by local teachers who will volunteer on Tuesdays and Wednesday evenings. Anyone wishing to volunteer at the library should call (570) 645-3780. Seated, left to right, are: Shirley Dodson; Cathy Capece; Dawn Neyer; Library Director Debi Dodson. Standing, left to right, are: Ashley Zuber; Alexandra Francis; Carrissa Whateley; Sarah-Mary Tucker; Evelyn Babish. Volunteers not in the photo are: Joseph Dalessio; Pauline Davis; Frances Boyle; Betty Dickman; Debra Masavage; Stacie Wise; David Wise; Nancy Meitzler; Paula Regan; Kimmy Stackhouse; Anita Kunkle and Samira Broschard. Anyone wishing to volunteer at the library should call (570) 645-3780. Library hours are: Mondays: 3:30 p. m. 7:30 p. m. ; Tuesdays: 9 a.m. to noon and 3:30 p. m. 7:30 p. m. ; Wednesdays: 3:30 p. m. 7:30 p. m. ; Thursdays: 5 p. m. 8 p. m. There is no cost for a library card.

Twenty-four people recently took volunteer training to help out at the Panther Valley Public Library, 117 E. Bertsch St., Lansford. Volunteers will be helping with library programs, shelving books, checking books in and out, helping with fund raisers, filing, cleaning, and using their talents to promote the library.

Beginning in March, a homework help desk will be manned by local teachers who will volunteer on Tuesdays and Wednesday evenings.

Anyone wishing to volunteer at the library should call (570) 645-3780.

Thursday, February 17, 2011
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS

Members of the choir at St. Matthew's UCC, Kunkletown, tried out a different kind of a fundraiser. They took orders to deliver Singing Valentines. They visited two local personal care homes, Getz's and Mrs. Bush's, a couple of houses and delivered 10 Singing Valentines by phone. Here they are singing "You are My Sunshine" to a former choir member, Becky Klotz, who is now living in Florida.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Palmerton Area School Board has agreed to not permit an exception to a school district policy to admit a kindergarten child as a student of the district.

That was the decision the school board unanimously agreed to on Tuesday despite repeated pleas by the child's parents to allow their daughter to attend kindergarten.

Beth Garambone, the child's mother, told the board her daughter turned five this past November and had been a cyber-school student since the start of this school year.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Franklin Township supervisors are alerting township residents that they may see trees cut down on their property by PPL workers this summer to keep tree-related power outages to a minimum.

Supervisors received a letter from PPL nothing that two years ago PPL Electric Utilities had started a program that involves clearing high-voltage transmission right-of-ways across their service territory.

Thursday, February 17, 2011
TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS Pam Storm, school counselor at S.S. Palmer Elementary/Parkside Education Center, stands beside fourth-grader Reshan Selvavelautham, fifth-grader Rebecca Gottfried, and first-grader Caryn Gottfried after they gave a presentation on an Extended Learning program at Palmerton Area School Board's meeting on Tuesday.

A redesigned program in the Palmerton Area School District continues to pay huge dividends for elementary level students.

Pam Storm, a school counselor at S.S. Palmer Elementary/Parkside Education Center, explained the merits of the Extended Learning program to the school board on Tuesday.

Storm, who was accompanied by several students currently enrolled in the program, told the board the revamped program has been a true success.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A recreational park plan in Penn Forest Township received the green light from the Carbon County Planning Commission on Tuesday.

During the board's monthly meeting, the members voted to recommend plan approval for the Penn Forest Township parcel plan, which names the Jim Thorpe Area School District as the owner of the land and Penn Forest Township Board of Supervisors as the developers. The plans call for subdividing a 179.33-acre lot.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
LARRY NEFF/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS A FedEx truck is parked in a weigh station area off I-81 in Schuylkill County. The second trailer of the truck was leaking a chemical substance that forced the closing of the two southbound lanes for three hours Tuesday afternoon.

A chemical leak forced a section of Interstate 81 in Schuylkill County to be shut down for several hours Tuesday which resulted in a major traffic jam for area roads and four state troopers being exposed to the material.

State police at Frackville said the incident began about noon when a team of troopers were performing truck inspections along the southbound lanes at a weigh station in Delano Township, just south of the McAdoo-Tamaqua exit.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Lansford council will seek another round of bids for the job of replacing the oil burner in the borough hall, this time casting a wider net.

The new bids are needed because council believed the sole $80,000 bid submitted from the last solicitation was too high. Council will follow the recommendation of borough engineer Eric Snyder and publish the bid solicitations in a wider area. "This is a pretty specialized thing. There are not a lot of companies that do this," he said.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Jim Thorpe Planning Commission Committee will look into utilizing the current 903 bridge for walking and bicycling after the new 903 bridge is completed. The 903 bridge project is projected to begin in 2013 and take approximately 2 years to complete.

Last week, consultants of the bridge project met to discuss the impact of historical resources due to this project. Members of the Jim Thorpe Planning Commission and Borough Council attended this meeting. Committee and board members were given the chance to ask questions and share ideas.