Increasing Awareness of Substance Abuse and Recovery

The United in Recovery coalition is participating in events throughout the fall to raise awareness of substance abuse issues and celebrate recovery. A display in the Education building at the Bloomsburg Fair is designed to help parents and guardians identify potential hiding places for drugs. The Hiding in Plain Sight display simulates a child’s bedroom and was recently unveiled at a high school football game.

The coalition, organized by the United Way of Columbia and Montour County, seeks to reduce substance abuse in our area through education, prevention, and recovery and treatment. Community organizations, including the Chamber, and concerned citizens meet monthly to coordinate efforts in all three areas. The most recent newsletter provides an overview of these efforts, as well as information on a 5K event to be held Oct. 13 at the Bloomsburg Fairgrounds.

Anyone interested in getting involved in the coalition should contact Adrienne Mael, United Way President & CEO, at 570-784-3134 or email.

Welcome Lapels

More than 400 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, Lapels, to help us fulfill our mission.

Lapels is a locally-owned, full-service dry cleaner located in Bloomsburg that not only offers same day service if dropped off by 9 a.m., but also has several other services in addition to traditional dry cleaning of clothing. It also offers a cleaning service for items that may have been damaged in fire or by water, cleaning for other household items such as comforters, sheets, drapes, tablecloths and other similar delicate items, alterations, as well as wedding gown cleaning, pressing and preservation. Lapels also offers a loyalty program. For more information on Lapels, including its many services, rewards program and same day service details, visit their website or Facebook page. Lapels is located at 833 Columbia Blvd. (Rt. 11) next to Dunkin Donuts, and is open Monday-Friday, 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Saturday from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Sunday from 12-3 p.m. They can be reached at 570-387-1015. 

Bloomsburg Community Foundation Awards Over $10K to Local Nonprofits

Front Row (seated): Linda Resseguie, Friends of the Columbia County Traveling Library, Inc.; Ruth Joy Capozzi, Your Loving Choices, Inc.; Laurie Swank, AGAPE; Sandie Yule, AGAPE;
Second Row (standing): Kara Walsh, Friends of the Columbia County Traveling Library, Inc.; Heather Beagle, The Exchange; Anne Cosper, The Exchange; Jim Mccann, Central Susquehanna Sight Services; Debbie Jones, Columbia County Child Development Program; Ashley Miccio, Bloomsburg Area YMCA; Sue Jackson, Coalition on Social Equity; Lydia Kegler, Bloomsburg Public Library; Oren Helbok, The Exchange

The Bloomsburg Area Community Foundation (BACF), whose funds are administered by the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation, recently awarded $10,300 to local nonprofits during its competitive grantround. The awards were granted through the Bloomsburg Area Community Foundation Fund. The awards were given out at a luncheon at Monty’s on the Bloomsburg University, on Tuesday, Sept. 11, during which the BACF’s impact was also celebrated. Included in the 13 organizations that received awards were five Chamber members.  

The BACF focused its funding on organizations that invest in community programs and projects within Bloomsburg and surrounding areas.  Those grant recipients include:

  • AGAPE – Love from Above to our Community, Daily Bread Meal $1,000
  • Benton Area School District, Student of the Month Award Program $300
  • Bloomsburg Area YMCA, Summer Camp $500
  • Bloomsburg Public Library, Health Literacy Resources for Teens $700
  • Central Susquehanna Sight Services, Inc., Prevention of Blindness Services 500
  • Coalition for Social Equity in honor of former board member Isabelle Tarr $1,000
  • Columbia Child Development Program, Increase Mathematical Materials for 2-5-Year Olds $1,500
  • Friends of the Columbia County Traveling Library, Inc., Establishing Core Collection of Children’s Audiobooks $800
  • The Bloomsburg Salvation Army Service Center, Back to School Clothes Shopping $1,500
  • The Children’s Museum, Update and Improve Health and Nutrition Exhibit $600
  • The Dental Health Clinic, Financial Aid Awards to Help Individuals Pay for Dental Work $1,000
  • The Exchange, Creative Engagement with Youth-Artmaking Programs for Summer Camps $500
  • Your Loving Choices, Inc., Dad Parenting Curriculum $400

The Bloomsburg Area Community Foundation is an affiliate of the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation which helps administer BACF’s grant investments. Nonprofit organizations that provide programming in the Bloomsburg community and surrounding areas are encouraged to apply during the 2019 competitive grantround.  Details will be available on the CSCF’s website.

BACF Board Members are Fred Gaffney, Cleveland Hummel, Lauren Martz, Paul Reichart, Rev. Howell Sasser, Jr., John Thompson, Fred Trump, Rick Vanderpool


SEDA-COG Requests Input For Travel Needs Survey

SEDA-COG wants to hear from you.  How are you affected by transportation services in the central Pennsylvania region?  How could services better help you, your family, or your business in Clinton, Columbia, Juniata, Lycoming, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder and Union counties?

Let us know by participating in a brief online survey.

The survey, available through Oct. 29, is being conducted by the SEDA-COG and Williamsport Metropolitan Planning Organizations, as they update the Coordinated Public Transit-Human Services Transportation Plan in coming months. They especially want to know what you think about gaps in transportation services affecting seniors, minorities, low-income individuals, and people with disabilities or with limited English language skills.

If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact Steve Herman by email or phone at 570-524-4491. In Lycoming County, feel free to also contact Mark Murawski by email or 570-320-2138.  SEDA-COG and Williamsport Metropolitan Planning both thank you for your time.


Chamber Supports Open Meeting Legislation

Legislation under consideration in the PA House of Representatives would require that agendas for public meetings be posted on agency websites at least 24 hours prior to the meeting. With a few exceptions, items not on the published agenda could not be voted upon. The Chamber’s Board of Directors recently expressed support for the bill.

House Bill 1531 would apply to any public agency, including local governments, with a publicly accessible website. Emergency business or minor issues that do not involve the expenditure of funds or entering into a contract or agreement that arise after a published agenda could be acted upon. The legislation was introduced last summer and was reported out of the House Rules Committee in June of this year.

The Chamber Board voted unanimously to support the bill to allow the public to be better informed and offer input on issues. “While meetings of public agencies are open to the public, attending numerous meetings without knowing what is going to be considered is burdensome and typically less productive,” said Fred Gaffney, Chamber president. “Posting agendas online in advance will allow concerned citizens and organizations, including the Chamber, to be better prepared to comment and be more efficient in the decision making process.”