Atlantic Broadband Showcases Enhanced Services at June Business After Hours

Atlantic Broadband showcased its various services and products for both business and residential customers, which have grown since the former Metrocast was acquired by Atlantic Broadband in early 2018, while also treating guests to a delicious buffet spread from Lucy’s Craft Catering and beer from Turkey Hill Brewing at June’s Business After Hours, held on June 19 at Atlantic Broadband’s Berwick offices.

Representatives from several of Atlantic Broadband’s current business customers along with a few dozen other Chamber members were on hand to enjoy the leisurely early summer afternoon. Several Atlantic Broadband branded items were also given away to attendees, while four lucky winners went home with Yeti products and Bose and Beats headphones.

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 Hope Enterprises, located at 543 Church St. in Danville, on Wednesday, July 17, from 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Leadership Central Penn Seeks Applications For 2019-20 Class

The 2018-19 Leadership Central Penn class at its graduation held at Rolling Pines Golf Course & Banquet Facility last month.

Leadership Central Penn, a program of The Foundation of the Columbia Montour Chamber, is currently seeking applications for its 2019-20 class. LCP is the Chamber’s community leadership program for working professionals, and seeks to identify and educate citizens from Columbia and Montour counties that exhibit leadership potential. Classes meet on the third Thursday of each month for a full day (approx. 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) from September through May. There is also a program orientation in late August, which this year will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 28 prior to the Chamber’s Mixer with Nonprofits event. Area businesses and organizations are encouraged to nominate and sponsor employees. Individuals may also apply. The application deadline is July 31.

The 2019-20 class will be the 21st since LCP’s inception in 1993. The 2018-19 class, held its graduation last month.

Cost per participant is $1195. There is a $200 discount for Columbia Montour Chamber members, making their cost $995, while the cost for 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations is $845.

Application (.pdf)

Program Promotional Brochure (.pdf)

Chamber Foundation Announces 2019 Scholarship and Master’s Certificate Recipients

The Foundation of the Columbia Montour Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce this year’s SCHOOL COUNTS Scholarship and Master’s Certificate Winners from the graduating classes of each of the eight high schools in Columbia and Montour Counties. Scholarship winners were awarded $100 and were randomly selected from seniors who successfully met the soft skills goals of the program. Additionally, students who successfully met the program goals each year of high schools were awarded a Master’s Certificate. 

Criteria for earning a School Counts! Certificate:

  • Self Starter: Students must enroll at lunch or with a school counselor
  • Work Ethic: Obtain a “C” or better in every class
  • Dependability: Achieve at least a 95% attendance & punctuality rate (For a 180 day school year, that means no more than 9 absences and 5 tardies)
  • Self Discipline and Positive Attitude: Demonstrate positive behavior with no out of school suspensions

If your company or organization employees or works with these students, you can have confidence in their mastery of these important soft skills.  In fact, they have the credentials to prove it!  If your organization would like to get involved with SCHOOL COUNTS, or any of The Foundation’s student workforce programs, please contact Jeff Emanuel, Director, at 570-784-2522 or email.

Congratulations to this year’s recipients:

Benton

  • Matthew Farver (Scholarship)

Berwick

  • Mariah Frankford (Scholarship)

Bloomsburg

  • Rolin Bachert (Master)
  • Iris Barrett (Master)
  • Evan Long (Scholarship and Master’s Certificate)
  • Chad Lyman (Master)

Central Columbia

  • Jacob Berkey (Master)
  • Elizabeth Deroba (Master)
  • Sarah Esslinger (Master)
  • Addison Gemberling (Master)
  • Brendan Gregory (Scholarship & Master)
  • Kaylee Hine (Master)
  • Kaylen Martin (Master)
  • Gracen Mott (Master)
  • Justin Mungo (Master)
  • Lauren Spicher (Master)
  • Jadyn Uholik (Master)      
  • Owen Yorty (Master)
  • Emily Zimmerman (Master)

Columbia Montour Area Vo-Tech

  • Bryce Bardo (Master)
  • Hunter Baxter (Master)
  • Haylea Bingaman (Master)
  • Nicholas Campbell (Master)
  • Natasha Farr (Scholarship & Master)
  • Alexus Fetterman (Master)
  • Haley Hendricks (Master)
  • Branson Kester (Master)
  • Maverick Kramer (Master)
  • Aunide Lindner (Master)
  • Dontay Payton (Master)
  • Grace Six (Master)

Danville

  • Kimberly Weller (Scholarship)

Millville

  • Megan Boyles (Scholarship)

Southern Columbia

  • Edward “Russell” Gleeson (Scholarship)

Members Take Deep Dive into Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Law

A large crowd of interested business leaders received an in-depth presentation on Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana law at a breakfast seminar held on June 27 at the Greenly Center, sponsored by WorkPlace Health, and co-organized by the Chamber and PA CareerLink Columbia/Montour Counties. The event featured breakfast from T.K. Witch and coffee from Bason Coffee.

Attorney John Kutner, who handles employment law and workers’ compensation matters at Weber Gallagher, a law firm based in Philadelphia, gave a 75-minute presentation that covered the basics of Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana law, which was passed in 2016 and implemented beginning in 2017, explored federal policy on the matter and areas where the two conflict, and also reviewed case law from other states that have legalized medical and/or recreational marijuana.

Since there have yet to be many major cases in Pennsylvania related to employment matters and medical marijuana, there still remains a large unknown with the law’s implementation being just two years old. Still, based on court rulings in other states that have similar laws, there were still lessons to be learned and advice to be taken for business leaders when crafting and adjusting workplace policies.

The entire presentation (approx. 75 minutes) can be viewed below, or by visiting the Chamber’s YouTube channel.

Workforce Development Efforts Hone in on Criminal Justice Reform

From PA Chamber of Business & Industry

Last session, the PA Chamber joined a bipartisan mix of business and labor groups; criminal justice reform advocates and lawmakers in the enactment of “Clean Slate” legislation.  This first-of-its-kind in the nation initiative allowed individuals with low-level, non-violent criminal offenses to have their records sealed from public view; giving them a better chance at securing a better paying job and housing, allowing them to become productive members of society and lowering their chances of heading back to jail. 

Our organization embraced this issue as one part of a broad strategy in closing Pennsylvania’s jobs skills gap; and one that also included protections the PA Chamber sought for employers from civil liability under certain circumstances.  Since “Clean Slate” became law, we have also stood alongside elected officials from both sides of the aisle in favor of additional “win-win” reforms that will facilitate employment among reentrants, while also helping employers find qualified job applicants.

This session, we’re working to implement reforms that will bring uniformity to occupational licensure boards’ decisions on whether to deny an occupational license based on a criminal record, including providing that a license may only be denied if the record is directly related to the occupation.  There are a number of careers that require such licenses – everything from auctioneers to barbers – and while training programs toward these jobs currently exist in corrections facilities, the individual is at the mercy of the board to determine whether they can pursue such a path upon their release.  Additionally, the PA Chamber is supporting bills this session that would make a number of reforms to the state’s probation and parole systems, making it easier for those who get out of jail to stay out – including providing for early termination of parole if the person completes certain educational or job training programs.

The PA Chamber wants Pennsylvania to have a world class workforce that’s equipped to compete with other states and nations in the 21st century global economy.  Through our Educational Foundation, we are continuing to grow our robust workforce development initiative, Start the Conversation Here, that is educating students and their families, educators and employers about the skills and training necessary to enter into in-demand jobs; and we’re in the third year of awarding Work Ethic Scholarship dollars to students with a passion for pursuing a career in the skilled trades through our ongoing efforts with the mikeroweWORKS Foundation. 

However, closing the jobs skills gap will require a multi-tiered approach that engages the private and public sector and includes legislation like the criminal justice reforms we’re endorsing this session.  By working together, we can help to ensure that the next generation of Pennsylvania workers has the skill set, work ethic and opportunities that will make our state’s economy stand out among the world’s best.