House State Government Committee Advances Paycheck Protection Legislation

From PA Chamber of Business & Industry

In late November, the House State Government Committee held a voting meeting where two bills were advanced to the House floor that would bar public employers from using taxpayer-funded public systems to automatically deduct from employees’ paychecks campaign contributions or any portion of union dues intended for political activity.

House Bill 1174 and Senate Bill 166 (which passed the Senate earlier this year) both cleared the committee on a party-line vote, with Democrats voting in the negative. Commonly referred to as “paycheck protection” legislation, such measures have been introduced and hotly debated in previous sessions. The organized labor community has strongly opposed any change to the status quo while other groups have advocated ensuring that government resources aren’t being used for political purposes.

The PA Chamber supports paycheck protection bills as good government measures; and previously observed that arrests and convictions of several lawmakers and staffers in recent years have shown that a clear line must be maintained to avoid any use of taxpayer resources for political activity.

Both bills now await further consideration by the full House.

Welcome Community Strategies Group

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, Community Strategies Group, to help us fulfill our mission.

An offshoot of the Columbia County Housing & Redevelopment Authority, the Community Strategies Group is a comprehensive community, economic and housing development organization serving Columbia County and surrounding areas. It is currently involved in the Downtown Berwick revitalization project and also handles projects involving neighborhood revitalization, property management, business development, strategic planning and blight removal. CSG’s offices are located at 700 Sawmill Rd., Suite 101 in Bloomsburg, and can be reached at 570-784-9373, ex. 101, or visit its website for more information. 

Member News – December 6, 2017

Member News

  • SEKISUI SPI recently received a Gold Level Award for its environmental initiatives at the recent International Association of Plastics Distribution (IAPD) conference. 

    SEKISUI SPI’s Aaron Douglas, Julie Hart, and Tom Kapelewski with the IAPD Gold Level Award.

    These awards were established by the IAPD environmental committee in 2008 as a way to celebrate the environmentally responsible practices of IAPD member companies, including recycling, community outreach, employee engagement and more. There are four levels of the award – best overall program, gold, silver and bronze. 


  • Dr. David Hamilton of Hamilton Dental Care and president of the The Jubilate Choir and Orchestra, is pleased to announce The Jubilate Choir and Orchestra’s Annual Christmas Concert, A Holy Night of Angels, will be on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 10 at 3 p.m. The choir and orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Alan J. Hack, is made up of community singers and instrumentalists along with Mrs. Kathy George accompanying on the piano. It invites all to join them at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, 123 Market St., Bloomsburg for this exciting concert, a high point of the Christmas season celebration in our area!


  • Co., a social and professional networking group that is run by the United Way of Columbia and Montour County, will hold its annual holiday party on Tuesday, Dec. 12, from 5:30-7 p.m. at Filet 18, 18 W. Main St., Bloomsburg. Come and join this group of area professionals for a fun night of socializing and networking. Co. was founded to give area residents the opportunity to take advantage of all the great things this area has to offer. This group is for everyone, which means any age, ability, or area of residence. It holds multiple events each month. For more information about Co., including future events, visit its Facebook page


  • It is the season of giving and the Ken Pollock Auto Group, is continuing its yearly tradition of collecting new or slightly used coats, in all sizes to benefit local families. From now through Dec. 15, Ken Pollock Auto Group will be collecting coats that can be donated at any of its auto dealerships, including locally at Ken Pollock Ford Lincoln in Berwick. All coats collected in our area will be donated to the Columbia Child Development Program – Head Start for distribution to families in need. For more information, contact the Ken Pollock Auto Group at 570-655-4575. 


  • Wild For Salmon will host a holiday tasting on Saturday, Dec. 16 at its store at 521 Montour Blvd. (Rt. 11), Bloomsburg, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Chefs Matt and Josh have created and prepared a delicious holiday-inspired menu and they invite the public to stop by and try some of their wild caught salmon treats and meet one of their fisherman. This event will feature salmon sushi rolls, cajun shrimp-stuffed keta fillets, whole roasted king salmon, halibut soup, holiday spread with dried cranberries and pistachips, cajun dip and smoked salmon (garlic pepper, traditional sockeye and traditional king). 


  • The Bloomsburg Area YMCA will be celebrating the holiday season with a senior Christmas party on Tuesday, Dec. 19, from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. There will be a potluck-style meal, as well as fried chicken provided by the Y. Guests can come in their favorite ugly sweater and will be able to enjoy Wii bowling and a visit from Santa. Those interested in attending should register at the Y front desk by Friday, Dec. 15. There is no cost to attend this event. 

Members Enjoy the Pleasant Coffee Aroma at Bason Coffee Roasting Business After Hours

Chamber members had an opportunity to learn about the many varieties and flavors of coffee, the various ways the coffee beans can be roasted, as well as gain some insight into the coffee supply chain at the final Business After Hours of 2017, which was hosted by Bason Coffee Roasting last Wednesday, Nov. 29 at its roasting, production and retail facility in downtown Danville. Attendees also had an opportunity to hear about owner Brad Bason’s efforts to help Rwandan farmers develop their local community through growing coffee, all while enjoying hors d’oeuvres from the Chamber’s newest member, That Kitchen Witch, as well as beer, wine, tea, and of course, coffee, and networking and taking in the pleasant aroma of the various types of coffee that is roasted daily in the building. Several attendees also elected to purchase some coffee while they were there, and those interested in sampling any one of the several types of coffee offered at Bason Coffee Roasting are encouraged to stop by during their holiday shopping, as Bason Coffee makes a great stocking stuffer. 

Business After Hours provide regular opportunities to build business relationships while learning about the services offered by other Chamber members. The next Business After Hours will be held at the Bloomsburg Area YMCA, located at 30 East 7th St., Bloomsburg, on Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, from 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Welcome That Kitchen Witch

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, That Kitchen Witch (T.K. Witch for short) to help us fulfill our mission.

T.K. Witch is a full-service, off-premise catering company that can handle everything from casual backyard barbecues to formal wedding dinners and everything in between. It also recently launched a new at-home delivery service, similar to larger, mass-produced home food delivery businesses, but on a local level, which allow it to offer fully-cooked ingredients, unlike larger, national food delivery companies. T.K. Witch caters weddings, corporate events, backyard parties, and also offers bartending and beverage services and private chef/dinner party services. Earlier this year, it moved into a new commercial kitchen located at the old Lewisburg High School at 815 Market St. (corner of Routes 15 & 45) in Lewisburg. T.K. Witch can be reached at 570-259-5179, by email, or visit its website