Editorials

Commissioners correct to look at staff cuts given budget status

With Lycoming County once again looking at deficit spending to balance its 2018 budget, Commissioner Rick Mirabito said last week the county is working to lower its number of positions in order to save on salary and benefits costs. Mirabito said his goal is to reduce the county’s manpower ...

Gambling expansion does not solve state budget structure problems

Pennsylvania casinos will gross more revenue this year than any state except Nevada. So it comes as no surprise that the state lawmakers and Gov. Wolf, with a new budget stalled by a $2.2 billion deficit, last week approved a bill to expand casino-style campleing to truck stops, online ...

Trump took correct action in suspending insurance payments

As we pointed out years ago, billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies funneled to insurance companies by former President Barack Obama were a coverup. They were not authorized by Congress, as the Constitution requires. For that reason, President Donald Trump was absolutely correct in saying ...

County budget: deficit spending must end soon

The earliest projections for the 2018 Lycoming County budget show a $7.4 million deficit - and no tax increase. The projected deficit has been less each of the past three years. Moreover, the actual deficit during each of those years has actually been less than expected. But the practice of ...

ISIS: Its capital is gone but the terror threat is still in place

In bygone days, officials in some European nations had a way of emphasizing that their forms of government would endure. When a sovereign died and a new one was being crowned, the cry was, “The king is dead — long live the king!” Sadly, so it is with Islamic terrorists. There was ...

211 needs to become just as embedded as 911 in our lives

The 911 number has become the instinctive connector between people and emergency responders in our county, state and nation. And that’s great. Countless tragedies have been averted or at least partially reduced by that simple connection, understandable to everyone. The 211 hotline offered ...

Prescription limit bill long overdue, worthy of approval

The state Senate passed legislation last week that is long overdue. A bill chiefly sponsored by State Sen. Gene Yaw, who represents our region, would limit the number of prescription opioids– very strong pain killers – that may be dispensed. The bill puts a seven-day cap on ...

Earlier arrival to airport easy trade for greater safety

It's going to take longer to board a flight out of the Williamsport Regional Airport in the future. The Transportation Security Administration is implementing "new, stronger screening procedures" for carry-on items at the airport. New procedures require travelers to place all electronics ...

Intelligence agencies need a return to old-fashioned spying

It’s been clear for awhile that U.S. intelligence agencies need an overhaul. Too much reliance has been placed on technology, with old-fashioned spying taking a back seat. Recently, CIA Director Mike Pompeo said that is about to change. More intelligence agents will be sent out into the ...

Naloxone partnering not a cure all, but a practical initiative

The Lycoming County Commissioners, Susquehanna Region EMS, many local police departments and the district attorney’s office entered into an important partnership recently. They agreed to provide local law enforcement agencies with naloxone, an opioid overdose reversal drug. The costs of ...

Sgt. Bergdahl’s plea robbed Americans of complete story

When Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl deserted his post in Afghanistan in 2009, he put his fellow soldiers in jeopardy. At least two were wounded in firefights while they searched for him. And, though Bergdahl had no part in the ill-informed decision by former President Barack Obama to exchange five ...

Lawmakers discard practical budget answer for more taxes solution

Pennsylvania lawmakers stuck for a budget solution rolled out their go-to argument this week, reviving the call for severance tax on gas drilling. The industry appears to be making a rebound in Pennsylvania, the nation’s No. 2 gas state thanks to Marcellus Shale deposits. And proponents of ...

West Fourth Street in Newberry: Bumpy but better eventually

Driving on West Fourth Street in Williamsport’s West End is, to say the least, an adventure these days. The street is a maze of potholes, temporary patching, uneven pavement and a detour. It’s all part of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s overdue $9 million ...

South Side fire merger seems destined, sadly, to be two-sided

The state attorney general’s office is filing paperwork in Lycoming County Court seeking to dissolve South Williamsport’s Independent Fire Co. It was not the initial plan when South Williamsport leaders decided to merge the borough’s three fire companies in March of 2016, creating a new ...

Whatever is done to remove Kim is a good thing

President Donald Trump’s administration “clarified” recently that it is not seeking to remove North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. What a shame. In reaction to a round of North Korean saber rattling, Trump had tweeted that if that nation’s leaders continue to misbehave, “they won’t be ...

Pelosi’s recent problem was of her own making

For a fleeting second or two, it might have seemed possible to feel sorry for House of Representatives Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. Or not. Pelosi’s problem recently was of her own making. During an appearance in her home district, San Francisco, Pelosi and a couple of other ...

Siren is a short-term tool worth pursuing for Grafius Run area

A warning siren won’t solve the flooding problems in the Grafius Run area of Williamsport. But, in the here and now, it’s an idea completely worth pursuing. Members of the City Council Public Safety Committee want to see whether it is feasible for a siren to be used again, as it was in ...

Failure to warn customers of identity theft risk inexcusable

Financial services companies assure us they will handle the confidential information they often demand from us responsibly and securely. As many Americans have learned from data breaches in the past, those are promises not always kept. Now Equifax, the giant credit reporting agency, has ...

County prison issues need more debate, a long-term answer

Lycoming County prison population, incarceration costs and crime statistics aren’t an interesting mix of issues to consider in light of Commissioner Rick Mirabito’s recent comments that the county should consider creating a new prison. The county has spent about $169,000 on housing female ...