The LuLac Edition #2105, June 28th, 2012
SUGAR NOTCH SHUFFLES FREE SPEECHIn a few days our country is going to be celebrating the Fourth of July. You know that holiday with the Declaration of Independence, that document that guaranteed liberty, the pursuit of happiness. You know the drill. One of the premier architects of that freedom from Great Britain was Thomas Paine. Paine was was an English-American author, pamphleteer who is regarded as one of the founding fathers of Colonial America. His principal contributions were the powerful, widely read pamphlet Common Sense (1776), the all-time best-selling American book that advocated colonial America's independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain, and The American Crisis (1776–83), a pro-revolutionary pamphlet series. Common Sense was so influential that John Adams said, "Without the pen of the author of Common Sense, the sword of Washington would have been raised in vain.” The beauty of America is that you could use the power of speech and the power of the pen to start a revolution. Thomas Paine did it and is regarded as a great American hero. Sugar Notch Council member Mario Fiorucci is doing the same thing but is getting arrested and charged with trespass. And Fiorucci is not advocating a revolution. All he is doing is passing out a one page document to borough residents (who by the way elected him to Council in 2009!) that highlights things going on in the town. Here are a few excerpts from the Town News obtained by LuLac:
“A gaming funding (casino) grant for $85,000 was given to Sugar Notch for a 2012 Chevy Cruiser ($35,000) and a F 350 multi use dump truck ($53,000).
“Karen Swast was retained by the council as a grant writer on a contingency basis”.
“Sugar Notch is owed more than $100,000 in back sewer fees”.
That’s what is in Mario Fiorucci’s town news. Nothing inflammatory, nothing revolutionary, nothing that smacks of treason. With all due respect, it smacks of boredom. But yet Fiorucci was charged with trespassing because he made a revelation about a used dump truck the Council bought that didn’t fit down the borough’s narrow streets. Former Council President Pat Dalton warned Fiorucci that his Town News was a dual offense of trespassing and littering. Within a month, Fiorucci, who writes the newsletter on his own time and dime was hauled in to a Magistrate’s office and charged with criminal trespass. This is a third degree felony.
My God, if you are opening up a pizza joint, having a boy scout bake sale, or hawking Chinese Food delivery, don’t go on a porch in Sugar Notch with your flyers. You’ll get arrested.
CORBETT’S BUDGETTom Corbett is set to have another budget passed on time. The funding projections are getting better and there may be some dollars left over by the end of the fiscal year. Corbett’s budget weighs in at 27.7 billion dollars. State spending increases by $471 million, or 1.7 percent, from this year's $27.1 billion. Corbett had proposed holding spending level, but agreed to the increase because of improving tax collections. In reality, state spending increases by $371 million, or 1.4 percent Corbett is going to be using block grants to the tune of 100 million dollars to let the counties decide where best to spend the money. Two things are certain, the budget will get done on time and Corbett’s popularity will remain stagnant. Corbett is being a fiscal conservative in a state still in withdrawal from the check toting Rendell years.
IF IT’S STRUCK….Later on today, if the Affordable Care Act is struck down, this is what will be eiliminated. As you well know, President Obama signed the health care law – the Affordable Care Act – into law on March 23, 2010 and it’s already making a positive difference in the lives of millions of Americans. The law is already holding insurance companies accountable and ensuring middle class families have secure, affordable health insurance. Thanks to the health care law:
• Preventive care --including mammograms for women and wellness visits – are available at no charge for everyone on Medicare.
• 54 million Americans gained better preventive service coverage through their private health insurance plans.
• By August 1, 12.8 million Americans will benefit from rebates provided by their insurance company because the company spent too much of their premium dollars on administrative costs or CEO bonuses.
• 6.6. million young adults were able to sign up for coverage on their parents’ plans, including 3.1 million young adults who would have been uninsured without the law.
• 5.3 million people with Medicare who hit the prescription drug donut hole saved $3.7 billion on their prescription drugs.
• Insurance companies can’t drop your coverage because you got sick and made a mistake on your application. Nearly 16 million Americans who purchase insurance in the individual market are no longer at risk of losing their insurance.
• Insurance companies can no longer limit the amount of coverage you can receive in a lifetime. Nearly 105 million privately insured American can now live with the security of knowing that their coverage will be there when they need it the most. These are just some of the ways the law is already making a positive difference for the American people. And now, you can see the latest data about how the law is helping your state by visiting HealthCare.gov/center. There, you’ll find a map with links to state-by-state data and facts about how the law is improving our health care system.
WHAT AN IDEALuzerne County Council member Rick Williams came up with a tried and true but tired old idea about workforce guidelines. Williams’ idea is not terribly original in the private sector but I guarantee you it is going to cause an upheaval in Luzerne County like you have never seen. His idea? Councilman William’s suggested workforce mandates for the administration, including switching all employees to a 40-hour work week and standardizing the number of vacation and sick days. Oh my God, there is going to be hell to pay for this. The Council has agreed to discuss it. And what a discussion it shall be. I’ll bet 1000 to 1 odds that the Court Administration will say, “We can’t do that!” The unions will freak and Williams might have to have a relative start his car every morning. As Maynard G. Krebs used to shriek, “Work?”
NORA EPHRONWriter, movie producer, novelist, Nora Ephron died the other day at the age of 71. Her body of work filled the arena of pop culture in the late 20th century with seminal movies like “Heartburn”, “When Harry Met Sally”, “Sleepless In Seattle” , “Julia” and “You’ve Got Mail”. Ephron’s movies were funny, sentimental and literate. I don’t think many of her movies today would be big sellers because in my opinion, movie goers today don’t have the attention span to think. Or appreciate good writing. She was a treasure.
AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE
Shadoe Steele presents Saturday Night Live at the Oldies this week from 7 to midnight on WILK AM and FM. Steele’s guest is Gloria Loring, that big blonde bombshell from “Days Of Our Lives”. To some she is Mrs. Alan Thicke. Tune in for a great interview this Saturday night. And donh’t forget about the ABC News on the top of the hour to keep you informed of what’s happening on the weekend.
This Weekend on Sunday Magazine…Brian Hughes speaks with the presumptive State Representative from the 112th Legislative District, Kevin Haggerty about state budget cuts, the financial problems in Scranton, and his plans should he be elected in November. Brian speaks with Karla Porter from the ARC of Luzerne County, who discusses the agency’s TRACE Program, which helps prepare developmentally disadvantaged individuals prepare for the workplace And an encore of Magic 93’s Frankie in the Morning’s interview with Michael Tatulo and James May from PENNDOT, who discuss Fourth of July driving safety. Sunday Magazine, Sunday morning at 5am on Great Country 93.7, 5:30am on 97BHT, 6am on 97.9X, 6:30am on Magic 93, and 7am on True Oldies 590, WARM.
ECTVIf "you can't see the forest for the trees" are there buildings to be seen in the city? The Lackawanna Historical Society plans a historical walk through downtown Scranton and Leni Piaskyre of the Society will offer a preview on ECTV Live with Tom Munley and David DeCosmo the week of July 2nd. ECTV Live is a Public Affairs program seen on Comcast Ch19.
Pope Paul VI ordains 276 new cardinals (one of whom is the future Pope John Paul II)...... The Buffalo Race Riot begins, lasting until July 1; leads to 200 arrests.......The first automatic cash machine (voucher-based) is installed, in the office of the Barclays Bank in Enfield, England.... Israel declares the annexation of East Jerusalem..........Canada celebrates its first one hundred years of Confederation.......In Pennsylvania, Lt. Governor Raymond Broderick tours the State Park system promoting the places as great vacation destinations in the Commonwealth……..in Wilkes Barre, the Redevelopment Authority signed a contract to sell 4700 square feet on South Main Street in Wilkes Barre to Provincial Towers in Philadelphia. The plan was set up to make luxury apartments on the site in the downtown and forty five years ago the number 1 song in America and LuLac land was a song that has become one of the most performed, most requested and most heard tune of all time. Frankie Valli’s blockbuster hit, “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You".