Member News – June 28, 2017

Member News

 

Danville Child Development Center Earns National NAEYC Accreditation

Danville Child Development Center has earned accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) — the world’s largest organization working on behalf of young children.

NAEYC accreditation is a rigorous and transformative quality-improvement system that uses a set of 10 research-based standards to collaborate with early education programs to recognize and drive quality-improvement in high-quality early learning environments. DCDC serves over 400 children annually in its non-profit early-learning program and is a community based organization dedicated to giving children a strong foundation for lifelong success by providing supports to families and high quality early learning experiences in safe, nurturing and engaging environments.  The program is the only NAEYC accredited program in Montour, Northumberland, Snyder and Union counties. In the 30 years since NAEYC Accreditation was established, it has become a widely-recognized sign of high-quality early childhood education. More than 7,000 programs are currently accredited by NAEYC. Fewer than 10 percent of all child care centers, preschools, and kindergartens nationally achieve this recognition and approximately seven percent in Pennsylvania.

 

Hamilton Dental Care to Host Open House at New Office Location

Hamilton Dental Care will celebrate the recent opening of its new location at 2 Audubon Court, Bloomsburg, with an Open House on Thursday, July 13 from 4:30-8 p.m. The public is invited to bring the family for a fun night of food and prizes. Attendees can tour the new office and meet the friendly staff. Kids will enjoy face painting and balloons by The Balloon Man, Lanny Lee.  Adults can register to win a variety of prizes and baskets.  All new patients that schedule during this event will receive a 50% savings off their new patient exam.  A door prize of free whitening will also be given away to one lucky winner. 

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport Requests Your Feedback With One-Minute Survey

In an effort to best assist local organizations with airline service, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport (AVP) is exploring different opportunities for new routes, including from/to Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) and Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI).  To get the best possible opportunity for our local companies/organizations, however, AVP needs some feedback from our members. 

Please be assured that the information provided will remain confidential.  The results from individual companies/organizations would be grouped with other companies/organizations’ data to help AVP potentially retain air service between AVP/PIT and AVP/BWI, as well as other potential markets. 

This survey will take approximately one minute to complete.  Please take a moment and fill out the brief survey to assist AVP in this effort. The survey will be available until July 7. AVP thanks Chamber members for their time. 

Welcome LIFE Geisinger

More than 500 businesses and organizations belong to the Chamber to receive benefits and support efforts to strengthen their businesses and our region. Increased membership allows us to offer additional programs and benefits, have a stronger voice in advocacy and be involved in more activities and initiatives in our communities. The Chamber welcomes its newest member, LIFE Geisinger, to help us fulfill our mission.

A part of Geisinger Health, LIFE Geisinger is a unique and innovative program for eligible older adults designed to give them the support they need to live independently and remain in their homes. It is an all-inclusive program, meaning all of a participant’s healthcare needs are taken care of through the program, with the exception of emergency care. LIFE Geisinger also offers a separate adult day care service that is open to anyone, regardless of their eligibility for the all-inclusive program. Located at 1100 Spruce St., Kulpmont, LIFE Geisinger serves portions of Columbia, Montour, Northumberland and Schuylkill Counties, including the following zip codes in Columbia and Montour Counties: 17814, 17815, 17820, 17821, 17822, 17824, 17846, 17858, 17859, 17888, 17920, 18603 and 18631. For more information on LIFE Geisinger’s programs and eligibility, contact outreach and enrollment coordinator Wendy Rishel at 570-373-2100 or email

Last Week of State Fiscal Year Focuses on Gaming Discussions, Other Unknowns

From PA Chamber of Business & Industry

With only a few days left in the 2016-17 Fiscal Year, lawmakers are scheduled to be in session through June 30, the state’s constitutional budget deadline. More session days may be scheduled as necessary.

Legislative leaders remain engaged in conversations over what the next year’s budget plan will look like, and details are scarce. There continue to be questions over what the Senate’s version of H.B. 271 – the gaming expansion bill – will contain, and based on a conversation that Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati, R-Jefferson, had last week with Capitolwire, they are a long way off in reaching agreement. “My experience with gaming in the Senate Republican caucus I can boil down real simply,” Scarnati told the media outlet. “We have a third of the members of the Senate Republican caucus that are opposed to gaming because they oppose gaming. We have a third of them that have gaming interests in their district so they are somewhat not in favor of competition for casinos. We’ve got a third of the members in the caucus that, you know, could be influenced possibly one way or the other to vote for something. But there is no strong consensus. And when you start out with two-thirds of your caucus that principally are either against it or certainly economically opposed to something, it’s difficult. That’s why we’re where we are at.” Meanwhile, the House remains ready to go “all in” on gaming expansion as a way to generate up to $270 million in annual recurring revenue, with its version of the bill containing sweeping changes and allowing for video gaming terminals in bars, taverns and the like.

There are also said to be conversations about other forms of revenue to fill a $1.2 billion budget hole in the coming Fiscal Year, including borrowing and/or using money from the state’s share of the nationwide Tobacco Settlement Fund. In speaking with reporters last week, the governor didn’t outright oppose these ideas, but voiced concerns. The Associated Press has said that while Wolf is counting on an extra $250 million in money from new forms of gaming, the Department of Revenue has said doing so could lead to losses from the Pennsylvania Lottery and at casinos. “I want real revenue, and I want net revenue,'” Wolf told the press. “I don’t want anything that we do in gaming or gambling to interfere with the revenues that are already in place. If it just cannibalizes and takes from one bucket called gambling to another, the commonwealth isn’t doing anything more than it has in the past.”

Chamber Supports Expansion of Telecommunications Infrastructure

Adequate infrastructure is critical to the health and growth of communities. In addition to good roads, water, and electricity, reliable telecommunications is essential for resident safety and business operations. Unfortunately, telecommunications service, especially broadband internet, is either limited or nonexistent in significant portions of Montour and Columbia counties. The Columbia Montour Chamber recently joined with municipalities in northern Montour County in asking state legislators to work with potential providers to improve telecommunications infrastructure.

In underserved areas, cellular technology could be a viable option for homes and smaller businesses. However, many of these same areas also lack adequate cellular coverage. While speeds and network coverage in more populated areas are being improved, the carriers do not appear to be investing significantly in our rural areas to expand coverage.

From a regulatory standpoint, only the public utilities are compelled to provide a basic level of service. Today’s telecommunications marketplace offers other potential vendors. The Chamber is suggesting that funding policies should be modernized to provide incentives and assistance to these companies that is currently only available to the regulated utilities. This deficiency not only puts public safety as risk, but may cost our area job creating opportunities.