Thursday, July 08, 2021

The LuLac Edition #4,552, July 8th, 2021



Local literary fans are proud to announce "444 Days: Memoirs of a Hostage Wife by" Marge German as WINNER of the “Memoir” category for the 2021 Independent Press Awards.One of the facts that history might have missed is that the Iranian hostage takers never shut off the phones. So family members could communicate with the hostage's captors and get some concessions.

The INDEPENDENT PRESS AWARD recognizes over 200 Book Award Winners and Distinguished Favorites in its annual book competition. The competition is judged by experts from different aspects of the book industry, including publishers, writers, editors, book cover designers and professional copywriters. Selected award winners and distinguished favorites are based on overall excellence.

 In 2021, the INDEPENDENT PRESS AWARD had entries worldwide.  Participating authors and publishers reside in countries such as Australia, Canada, India, Ireland, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and others.  In addition, books submitted included writers located in U.S. cities such as Atlanta to Santa Fe; Chicago to New York; from Boise to Honolulu, and others.

 "We congratulate this year's 2021 winners and distinguished favorites in the annual INDEPENDENT PRESS AWARD.  The quality and quantity of excellent independently published books hit a record.  Independents recognized are thriving around the globe.  We are so proud to announce these key titles representing global independent publishing." said awards sponsor Gabrielle Olczak.

For more information, please visit; and to see this year's list of IPA Winners and Distinguished Favorites, please visit the website. 



Governor Tom Wolf and your blog editor. (Photo: LuLac archives) 

Governor Tom Wolf announced today that 50 municipalities will receive over $15.6 million to support traffic signal upgrades, increasing mobility and efficiency across Pennsylvania’s communities through the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s (PennDOT’s) “Green Light-Go” program.

“The safety improvements supported by the Green Light-Go program not only help municipalities relieve congestion and traffic flow, they help Pennsylvanians move safely and efficiently,” said Gov​. Wolf. “I’m proud to help our communities improve mobility for Pennsylvanians.”

Green Light-Go grants are provided as reimbursement to municipalities for updates to improve the efficiency and operation of existing traffic signals. Grant funding through the Green Light-Go program may be utilized for a range of operational improvements including, but not limited to light-emitting diode (LED) technology installation, traffic signal retiming, developing special event plans and monitoring traffic signals, as well as upgrading traffic signals to the latest technologies. This is the sixth round of funding disbursed through the Green Light-Go program for municipal traffic sign. How did LuLac land  make out?

Luzerne County

City of Hazleton – $305,677 for modernization of the Diamond and Vine Street traffic signal.

City of Wilkes-Barre – $300,000 for development and implementation of new traffic signal timing plans at 13 intersections.

Lackawanna County

City of Scranton – $488,000 for modernization of traffic signals along Cedar Avenue at E. Elm Street and Maple Street including new mast arms, controller cabinets, signal heads and pavement markings.




Ashli Babbitt died after she was shot during the Capitol riot on January 6.

Conservatives and far-right activists are posting the identity of the cop they say killed Babbitt.

The renewed online attention comes after Trump invoked Babbitt's name in an email to supporters.

Six months after the riot at the US Capitol, conservatives - encouraged by former President Donald Trump - are spamming social media with the alleged name of the police officer who shot Ashli Babbitt.

On Wednesday, multiple top posts on a fringe far-right message board called for "justice" for Babbitt and shared the alleged name of her shooter. One post, which was one of the site's most popular threads of the last 24 hours with more than 3,000 likes, called for the arrest of the officer.

One Twitter user shared the alleged name of Babbitt's shooter on Wednesday and questioned why he hasn't been "tried or arrested" yet, reaching 8,200 likes and nearly 3,000 retweets. It was not immediately clear whether this violated Twitter's Terms of Service. A Twitter representative did not immediately return a request for comment. (The Business Insider)



Congressman Cartwright giving flag that flew over the Capitol to Wyoming Monument officials.(Photo: Cartwright staff) 

U.S. Representative Matt Cartwright visited Johnson College with NEPA Alliance to announce a $75,000 federal grant for Johnson College through the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) to help them expand workforce training in skilled trades.

The school will use the funds to establish a Mobile Training Laboratory to provide hands-on learning for high school students enrolled in Johnson College's dual enrollment and Industry Fast Track programs offered at a number of rural regional school districts. The laboratory will take technology and equipment not available within the school district to offer real world experience to students and give them a head start on various associate degree programs at Johnson College, thus reducing the time for entry into the workforce.

“I’m proud to announce this federal funding that will enable Johnson College to make their leading job training programs more accessible. This Appalachian Regional Commission grant will help the school bring a state-of-the-art skilled job training laboratory directly to high schools in rural Northeastern Pennsylvania,” said Rep. Cartwright. “No matter where they live, students who want to go into the trades deserve to have access to the best training so they can go from school right into a good-paying job.”

“We are excited to offer regional school districts and industry partners the opportunity to experience hands-on training at their locations through this new mobile training laboratory,” said Dr. Katie Leonard, President & CEO of Johnson College. “Our goal with the mobile training lab is to deliver the highest quality hands-on technical education possible to further educate, develop, and train a workforce ready to meet the needs of NEPA.”

“ARC funding is essential for Northeastern Pennsylvania to remain economically competitive with the rest of the country. NEPA Alliance is proud to have assisted Johnson College with this grant and we thank Congressman Cartwright for his strong and consistent support for ARC grants in our region,” said Jeffrey Box, President and CEO of NEPA Alliance.

The mobile laboratory will train students in industry-driven fields such as the building trades, technology, electronics and industrial. This program will help students get a head start on various associate degree programs at Johnson College and accelerate their entry into good-paying jobs. The program may also support customized training at industry partner sites to increase needed skill levels for companies’ existing workers.

Rep. Cartwright works closely with the staff of the NEPA Alliance, which serves as the conduit for ARC funds for the region. NEPA Alliance staff vet potential grant proposals and provide technical support for organizations seeking ARC and other federal and state grants. Since taking office in 2013, Rep. Cartwright has helped secure $4.1 million in funding for Northeastern Pennsylvania through ARC. In addition to this grant, recent ARC awards for the region include $1.5 million to fund the development of a substance abuse treatment center at SCI Waymart in Wayne County (October 2020) and $100,000 for Wilkes-Barre Connect to support their “NEPA Works” job training program (May 2020).

As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Cartwright advocates each year to increase funding for ARC. In fiscal year 2021, he fought successfully to boost ARC funding by $5 million, for a total of $180 million for the year.

ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian region. ARC's mission is to innovate, partner and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia and help the region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.



Senator Bob Casey recently visited the Scranton Boy’s and Girl’s Club. He saw first hand how the agency serves the children of the Scranton area. Casey said, “The Boys and Girl’s Club provides nearly 55,000 children across the Commonwealth with a place to learn and grow in after school hours. Ensuring all children have access to safe environments like this is a major part of my plan, Five Freedoms For American Children. 


Photos: Aimee Wechsler



 Five Freedoms  for America’s Children

Throughout America, children lack health care, economic security, education, adequate nutrition and  safety. In the 21st century, every child in America should have the freedom to reach their full potential.  As Americans, it is our solemn obligation to help families ensure every child has the support they  need, yet we have failed them time and again. In recent years, corrupt forces have perverted the basic notion of freedom, while creating a government that works for corporate interests rather than our children’s best interests. The promise of opportunity and freedom for America’s children must be an urgent societal and governmental priority. As Former Governor Bob Casey of Pennsylvania wrote,

Only government, when all else fails, can safeguard the vulnerable  and powerless. When it [reneges] on that obligation, freedom becomes  a hollow word. A hard-working person unable to find work and support his or her family is not free. A person for whom sickness means financial  ruin, with no health insurance to soften the blow, is not free. A malnourished child, an uneducated child, a child trapped in foster care—these children are not free. And without a few breaks along the way from  government, such children in most cases will never be truly free.

In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt articulated this expansive vision of freedom in his “Four  Freedoms” speech,2 in which he described his vision for a post-war world based on freedom of speech  mand expression, freedom of every person to worship God in his or her own way, freedom from want and freedom from fear.

 Roosevelt’s four freedoms are no less relevant in today’s international order than they were as the world sought to respond to the totalitarian horrors of the 1930s and 1940s.  President Roosevelt also recognized that children have specific needs and requirements that compel  a policy response that is appropriate to those needs, saying, “We cannot always build the future for  our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.”4 Preparing our children for the future, giving them the freedom to develop into the persons they aspire to be, requires a renewed and deep commitment on the part of our country and our policymakers. It requires policies and investments  that are commensurate with our commitment and which put in place the conditions under which all  children can be truly free, regardless of race, ethnicity, zip code or other difference.  Preparing our children for the future, giving them the freedom to develop into the people they aspire  to be, requires a deep and continuous commitment on the part of our country and our policymakers.

It requires policies and investments that are commensurate with our commitment.







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On July 14 the Rookie of the Year Award is renamed to honor Jackie Robinson……..on the same day at the  58th All Star Baseball Game: NL wins 2-0 in 13 at Oakland-Alameda Stadium…..

Phillies Kent Tekulve pitches his 900th game in relief……Kitty Dukakis reveals an addiction to amphetamines for 26 years……1 million South Koreans demonstrate against Chun Doo Hwan regime…….Colonel Oliver North admits to shredding Iran-Contra evidence…….”Heart's "Alone" single goes #1 for 3 week…..Dow Jones closes above 2,500 (2,510.04) for 1st time….. Iran and France break diplomatic relations...Molly Yard elected new President of National Organization for Women…..Don Mattingly hits his 4th grand slam of season & ties AL record of homers in 6 straight games (on way to tie major league record of 8)…. Orioles' Cal Ripkin becomes 1st to manage  2 sons, as Billy joins Cal…..Martial law in Taiwan ends after 38 years and the number one song in LuLac land and America was “Alone” by Heart.


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