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    City of Albion issued 59 building permits in 2019 – Albionnewsonline - January 5, 2020 by admin

    City of Albion issued 59 building permits during 2019, with a total value of $2,598,137.There were 44 residential permits issued during the year, and the total value represented was $1,707,831.This total included three new single family homes, all built outside the city limits. Average value of the new homes was $395,000.The residential list included three garage additions at a combined total value of $184,000.There were also six interior remodels valued at a total of $185,300.One permit was issued for a new swimming pool outside the city limits at $80,000.Other permits were issued for patios, decks, accessory buildings and sheds, fences, carports, handicapped ramps, egress windows and other improvements.Commercial ProjectsThere were 15 commercial building permits issued, with a total combined value of $885,306.The largest permitted project was a business remodel valued at $800,000. Other projects included a smaller remodeling project, new business awning, signage, canopies, and a plumbing alteration.The only public or government project during the year was a new accessory building valued at $5,000.

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    City of Albion issued 59 building permits in 2019 - Albionnewsonline

    The top 10 most-expensive homes sold in the Fredericksburg region in 2019 – Fredericksburg.com - January 5, 2020 by admin

    The Fredericksburg regions luxury home market finished out the decade with 20 houses selling for more than $1 million in 2019.

    The 10 highest-priced houses had a few things in common. Most of them are on the water, they all have a lot of square footage, they all have wood floors and most sit on a hefty amount of land.

    But according to real estate agent Janel OMalley of Coldwell Banker Elite, one hallmark of these homes stands out: All of them were recently built or very recently renovated.

    OMalley has worked in the local luxury home market for 35 years locally and said todays high-end buyer is an empty-nester, less concerned with school districts and more interested in architecture, location and modern conveniences like elevators.

    She said the high-priced homes have the latest technology in appliances and security, and the kitchens and bathrooms were very recently renovated. She said there were homes in the city that sold in 2019 for less than they could have because no recent updates were done.

    The highest-priced home in the region was in Culpeper County. It fits the above criteria and more. It is historic, has water and mountain views, a lot of land and recently upgraded amenities. Built in the 1820s, Horseshoe Farm, located along the Rapidan and Robinson rivers, is a historic Greek Revival home that includes six bedrooms, five full baths, two half-baths and eight fireplaces. The house sold for $1.8 million in October.

    The second home on the list sold for $1.55 million in Spotsylvania County in November. On five acres in the North Club Estates neighborhood next to the Fredericksburg Country Club, it has private access to the Rappahannock River. Thanks to recent additions and renovations, it has up-to-date amenities.

    OMalley said 10 homes in Spotsylvania sold for more than $1 million, and most of them were on the water.

    Also in Spotsylvania County was the No. 3 home on the list, selling for $1.499 million. On Windsor Rose Drive in Bumpass, the house overlooks Lake Anna and sits on almost two acres. It has a private beach, five bedrooms and seven bathrooms. The real star is its kitchen, with two refrigerators and two dishwashers.

    Another home on Lake Annaon Governors Point Lanesold for $1.2 million. Like many of the others on this list, it is a waterfront home, with recent updates and little extras like electric boat lifts and a home theater room.

    The only property in the city to make the top 10 was the third-floor condo at 425 William St. Built just a few years ago, the condo has three porches overlooking the city, a secure garage and upgraded finishes throughout. It sold for $1.375 million in December.

    The top home in Stafford County came in fifth place on the list at $1.3 million. A recently renovated historic home with its own beach on 10 acres made 1381 Brent Point Road an easy sale in the luxury market.

    Close by in King George County, a similar property sold for $1.25 million. Situated on Berry Plains Landing, the house overlooks the Rappahannock River and has amenities like geothermal heat, a heated garage for car collectors, horse stables and upgraded finishes.

    In Orange County, 6616 Summerview Court sold for $1.216 million. And like many of the other homes on this list, it is a new construction, has a lakefront location, five bedrooms and features like a boathouse and elevator.

    In Stevensburg, another new home made the list. At $1.2 million, the Carrico Mills home is surrounded by 10 acres and has all the newest gadgets.

    Rounding out the list is yet another Culpeper County home. On 15 acres, a five-bedroom home with elevators and high-end finishes brought a sale price of $1.2 million.

    OMalley said that only two of the 10 highest-priced homes had swimming pools, which are waning in popularity, while many had upscale garages.

    She said as the region looks to 2020, the population will continue to grow as it has over the last decade, making for a strong real estate market. But she said the market remains strongest around $350,000.

    At that price, she said, homes tend to sell fast. And with more families moving to the area, she said the more affordable end of the housing market will continue to have a strong showing if the economy remains stable.

    But for those looking to sell high-end homes in 2020, she suggests taking a lesson from the top 10 list and make improvements before your house hits the market.

    Lindley Estes: 540/735-1976

    @flslindley

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    The top 10 most-expensive homes sold in the Fredericksburg region in 2019 - Fredericksburg.com

    These are The Salt Lake Tribune’s most-read stories of 2019 – Salt Lake Tribune - January 5, 2020 by admin

    A lot happened in Utah in 2019. There were joyous stories that inspired hope and optimism for the future, and there were a few that broke hearts and sparked efforts for change.

    The Salt Lake Tribune was there to cover them all with help from the readers who support our work. Heres a look at the stories that you read, shared, commented on and emailed us about.

    These are The Tribunes most-read stories of 2019.

    Latter-day Saints were greeted with sweeping changes in temple ceremonies this year, like more inclusive language, more gender equity and more lines for Mother Eve. Attendees described the revisions as empowering for women and healing for those wounded by the previous wording.

    Shortly before Thanksgiving, a Utah substitute teacher asked a fifth grade class: What are you thankful for this year? One boy said Im thankful that Im finally going to be adopted by my two dads, causing the substitute to reportedly snap, Why on earth would you be happy about that?

    For the next 10 minutes she lectured the 30 kids in the class about her own views, how homosexuality is wrong and two men living together is a sin. She looked at the boy, too, and told him: Thats nothing to be thankful for. Three girls asked her multiple times to stop, but the substitute continued. They then walked out of class and got the principal.

    Police officers and volunteers scoured Logan neighborhoods in search of a 5-year-old girl who was reported missing May 25. Family members told police they last saw Elizabeth Lizzie Shelley around 2 a.m. When they woke up at 10 a.m., she was gone. The girls 21-year-old uncle had disappeared as well, the family said.

    The speed of the about-face, historian Matthew Bowman said, reflects the turbulence that this policy and its implementation created among members, as well as among bishops and stake presidents."

    Many readers expressed outrage and some offered support after an image of a Utah child dressed in tan pants and a brown shirt with a red arm band adorned with a black swastika went viral this year.

    [The district] does not tolerate speech, images or conduct that portray or promote hate in any form, the statement read. The district is taking the matter very seriously and is investigating every aspect of the situation.

    A whistleblower complaint to the IRS accused The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of building a $100 billion investment portfolio using donations intended for charitable purposes, potentially in violation of federal tax laws, according to a report published by The Washington Post.

    The complaint was filed by David Nielsen, a former portfolio manager for the churchs nonprofit investment arm Ensign Peak Advisors, with the help of his brother Lars Nielsen, who spoke with and provided supporting documents to The Post.

    Draper police had sought the publics help locating Heber, who had walked away from the Salt Lake County Juvenile Receiving Center. Draper police said the boy had been diagnosed with autism, depression and anxiety.

    The driver of the vehicle was described as cooperative.

    They say there had been at least three other reports that the driver, John Naisbitt, targeted multiracial students before this. And while Naisbitt was never disciplined in connection with those prior allegations, they added, he quietly retired after the newest complaint.

    "I dont want to see a declaration of national emergency, Romney told MSNBC. I think thats an action that would be taken in the most extreme circumstances, and, hopefully, we dont reach that.

    In the end, there was no emergency declaration and Trump did not get his wall money.

    Ed Smart, the father of kidnapping survivor Elizabeth Smart, came out as gay in October, sending a letter using Facebook Messenger to family and friends that mentioned that he planned to separate from his wife and no longer feels comfortable in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Smart confirmed he sent it and posted it publicly a day later. Court records indicate that on July 5, Lois Smart filed for divorce from Ed Smart, 64.

    NBA hall of famer Jerry Sloan is a hero to many Utahns. And at 77 years old, wrote Gordon Monson, the once-fierce lions eyes are tired now.

    In a touching tribute, Monson reveals that Sloan who has Parkinsons disease and dementia is dying, and that those words hit with the force of a swinging tire iron.

    The move from a for-profit model was spurred by Tribune owner Paul Huntsman, who, in agreeing to turn Utahs largest paper into a nonprofit, is giving up his sole ownership.

    The current business model for local newspapers is broken and beyond repair, said Huntsman, who also serves as The Tribunes publisher. We needed to find a way to sustain this vital community institution well beyond my ownership, and nonprofit status will help us do that. This is truly excellent news for all Utah residents and for local news organizations across the country.

    While Marty Jessop trained to stay awake for days at a time, run in the sand, swim for long stretches in frigid water and pack everything from rubber rafts to comrades, memories of his time in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints kept him from quitting. He also thought about the woman he loved, and wondered if shed wait for him to return from Navy SEAL training.

    Jessop told The Tribune all about his history with the polygamous sect, what it felt like to leave it and how hes working to create a good life for his family.

    The audience cheered and applauded Matt Easton, who said coming out to his entire college was a phenomenal feeling, and it is a victory for me in and of itself.

    Our nation is operating concentration camps for refugee children. We need to stop denying that and decide if we are comfortable with that fact. And how we will explain it to our children.

    Bravo TV hasnt announced who will be in the cast of The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City, its newest show in the channels franchise, but that hasnt stopped the speculation. Showbiz Cheat Sheet claims to have a complete list of cast members, including Vida Tequilas Lisa Barlow, Beauty Lab & Lasers Heather Gay, The Fashion Fuses Angie Harrington, jewelery designer Meredith Marks, interior designer Sara McArthur-Pierce, Iris + Beaus Whitney Rose and The Shah Squads Jen Shah.

    Doctors at St. Marks Hospital in Millcreek performed heart surgery on Donnamay Brockbank in July 2018 to remove a medical device that was causing an allergic reaction, according to a lawsuit. After the surgery, the tube and needle or cannula returning blood to Brockbanks femur was removed. But blood was still leaving Brockbanks body through the other cannula, which was left in her body, unclamped, the lawsuit states. None of the medical professionals in the room addressed the tube piping blood out of Brockbank and into the garbage can, the lawsuit states. Eventually doctors reopened Brockbanks chest and tried to manually manipulate her heart, but they could not revive her.

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    These are The Salt Lake Tribune's most-read stories of 2019 - Salt Lake Tribune

    A 1924 switching station is reimagined as a family home – St. Louis Magazine - January 5, 2020 by admin

    From the time she was a teen, Kristin Frieben Whittle wanted to live in a gracious home. She envisioned it as an airy loft filled with family and friends, a place with enough space to display the art and curious objects shed collected throughout her life.

    She held fast to her vision after graduating from college and then law school. Even while running her own one-woman law firm, she spent weekends scouring neighborhoods in search of properties.

    In 2004, Frieben Whittle found her future home. I was driving around Overland when I saw this warehouse with 10 beautiful arched windows, she recalls. I took my mother on a walk-through, and she said, Kristin, please dont buy this building.

    Eighteen offices and a low drop ceiling cluttered the space, leaving it with a maze of corridors and little natural light. The building was a mess, Frieben Whittle says. The roof leaked, there was asbestos, it was full of debrisbut I could see it had great bones. She bought it, she says, for a good price.

    Constructed in 1924 by Southwestern Bell as a switching station, by 1947 the building had undergone three additions. Over time, it was sold and resold, then sat vacant until 2004, when Frieben Whittle bought it. During a 10-year negotiation to change its zoning, she had the structure stabilized, the roof replaced, custom windows installed, and the interiors stripped down to the brick. Since 2017, Frieben Whittle has lived and worked from a home office there as a lawyer and as a mediator for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

    The process of acquiring the 15,000-square-foot building, then transforming the raw space into living quarters, could have frustrated seasoned professionals, but Frieben Whittle was unfazed.

    When I was in my thirties and forties, I busted my butt as a litigator, she says. I saved and banked my earnings. To give herself time to design, furnish, and finish the space, she cut back on her work hours and added a partner.

    Frieben Whittles life and travel experiences inform all of her design choices, from the Persian rugs underfoot to the bespoke lighting fixtures overhead. I dont really follow trends, she says. My style is to mix different periods, materials, textiles, and art.

    Frieben Whittle started honing her eclectic style early on, raking through the offerings at garage sales with her mother, an aunt, and a cousin. All three of them could spot that one antique or piece that was undervalued and snap it up, she says. My mom has always decorated really well on a tight budget. I work the same way.

    She regularly shops Facebook Marketplace and scours the auction site Chairish for unique items: I almost always put in a bid for half of the asking price, then bid it up gradually. I put this home together with good deals.

    Frieben Whittle spends most of her time in the buildings central open area, which was once filled with offices. The three bedroom suites that she built include a master, where cool whites and the clean lines of blue Midcentury furniture give way to a riot of color and pattern in the bath, replete with a Moroccan tile fountain and backsplash. My bedroom was inspired by the white buildings with the blue roofs and domes of the Greek island of Santorini, she says. The tile designs and style of the bath came from my visits to Istanbul.

    A second suite features a Victorian-inspired den, a colorful bedroom done in Chinese floral wallpaper and Provenal prints, and a bath wallpapered in hand-cut Victorian botanical prints. Frieben Whittle designed the third suite, styled as a rustic log cabin bunkhouse, for her niece and nephews: Allie, Will, Kyle, and Kale.

    When my brother William died, eight years ago, his son, Will, was 10 years old, Frieben Whittle says. Wills mom asked if I would maintain my brothers custody arrangement and take him every other weekend, which I did. In 2012, when Wills mothers second husband died, leaving her with Will and his three half-siblings, she asked Frieben Whittle to help with all of the children, and she agreed.

    I went from having no kids of my own to having one in diapers, a toddler, a 5-year-old, and 11-year-old Will every other week, Frieben Whittle says. I designed the bunkroom just for them.

    About the same time, I bought a Sergio Bustamante sculpture, Arco de los Nios, to symbolize our relationship.

    Aunt Kristin tells us were familyme, her, the kidsand were all in this boat together; thats what the Bustamante boat sculpture symbolizes, says Will Frieben, now 18.

    As the children have grown older, Frieben Whittle says, they still visit often, but on a more flexible schedule: Theyre all busy with school activities, so they may skip one weekend and double up on the next. They have free run of the space, except for my office, which is off-limits.

    Sometimes, they just run around the main space like a racecourse. I had actually hoped we could all roller skate around here, but when I was trying to teach them to skate at a rink, I fell and broke my hip. They were traumatized by the medics, and me being down on the ice, so we never skated together here, but running? Its good.

    My aunt is amazing, says Will. She told us her idea for the bunkroom, but its so much more than we expected.

    Honoring family isnt the only purpose of the home, Frieben Whittle says. Community is essential to her, too: My friends call [the house] their gathering place.

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    A 1924 switching station is reimagined as a family home - St. Louis Magazine

    Plymouth man charged with conspiring to steal tools, catalytic converter – Wilkes Barre Times-Leader - January 5, 2020 by admin

    January 04, 2020

    WILKES-BARRE Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis Davin last week provided an update on the investments made by the department over the course of the past year in communities across Pennsylvania.

    The Department of Community and Economic Development is working to make communities stronger, to help businesses create jobs and ensure that workers have the skills they need to secure good jobs that enable them to provide for their families, Davin said. Were working to reduce poverty and homelessness and to bring hope to those who need it most. All of these investments represent our commitment to making life better for all Pennsylvanians, no matter which city or town they call home.

    Investments in our communities helped ensure that the department can achieve its mission of making Pennsylvania a place where people can work smart and live happy. Nearly 80 Keystone Communities projects and more than 200 Neighborhood Assistance Program projects were approved over the past fiscal year, improving the quality of life for communities across the commonwealth.

    Job creation remained a priority for the department this year through its economic development and business expansion programs. During fiscal year 18-19, DCED pledged to create more than 11,000 jobs and retained more than 27,000. The department supported nearly 5,000 projects for a total of nearly $1 billion invested through grants, loans, and tax credits. This investment leveraged an additional $1.9 billion in public and private funding.

    Consistent with the Wolf Administrations commitment to building the workforce of the future, investing in training Pennsylvanias workers was another area of focus this year. Through the departments many programs offered to employers, nearly 25,000 businesses received assistance, and training was provided to almost 94,000 Pennsylvania workers.

    In February 2019, Gov. Tom Wolf signed an executive order creating the Keystone Economic Development and Workforce Command Center. The Command Center brings an innovative approach to addressing the critical issue of training qualified workers for the jobs Pennsylvania companies need to fill. By bringing commonwealth, labor, and business leaders together, the Command Center creates an opportunity to address real-time workforce issues with real-time solutions. The Command Center will also further expand the ongoing collaboration occurring between state agencies, as well as between the administration and the private sector.

    In November, Wolf announced the creation of Pennsylvanias Business One-Stop Shop Registration Checklist. This tool helps small business owners and entrepreneurs more easily access necessary licenses, permits, forms, and contact information personalized for the needs of their company in just a few minutes. Since its inception in 2018, the One-Stop Shop has generated more than 174,000 unique visits to the website and has received critical buy-in and support from partners across the commonwealth like Small Business Development Centers.

    DCED also continued to invest in Pennsylvanias manufacturing sector through the Manufacturing PA initiative, which launched in 2018. Since then, more than $11 million in funding has been provided to train more than 1,840 Pennsylvanians in 81 new training programs across the commonwealth.

    Pennsylvania continued to raise its profile throughout the world, exporting more than $650 million in goods, bringing 19 businesses to Pennsylvania, supporting more than 6,000 jobs, and bringing in about $46 million in tax revenue. Additionally, the Office of International Business Development successfully obtained a $500,000 Small Business Administration grant to support the international business development activities of small- and medium-sized Pennsylvania companies.

    Finally, Pennsylvania tourism continued to grow, with more than 33 million hotel rooms being booked throughout the commonwealth, bringing in $4.7 billion in tax revenue and more than $44 billion being spent by visitors.

    Pennsylvanians encouraged to

    Resolve to be Ready in 2020

    As the decade draws to a close and millions of Pennsylvanians thoughts turn toward the positive changes they want to see in their lives, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency Director Randy Padfield is encouraging citizens to Resolve to be Ready in 2020 by creating family emergency plans and emergency kits.

    The single, most effective way to ensure the safety of your loved ones during an emergency situation is to have a plan, Padfield said. Being prepared and knowing ahead of time how to react are critical elements of emergency response training. You can do the same by practicing your plan and having a basic emergency kit.

    Padfield said to create an emergency plan, you should:

    Identify locations in both your community and in a nearby town, where you can meet loved ones.

    Identify an out-of-town contact everyone can check in with.

    Text or use social media to let others know you are safe and where you are.

    Have hard copies of lists of phone numbers and other important information such as doctors offices as well as copies of important documents.

    Practice your plan just like you would a fire drill.

    A basic emergency kit should include enough basic supplies to support your loved ones for several days. Padfield said it should include:

    One gallon of water per person per day.

    Non-perishable food and a manual can opener.

    Vital medical supplies, hearing aid batteries or other medical equipment and mobility devices you may need.

    Specialized items such as baby supplies and pet care products.

    First aid kit.

    Hand-crank or battery operated flashlights and radio.

    Car cell phone chargers or battery packs.

    Special toys or supplies to keep children and pets occupied and busy.

    Additional resources, including emergency plan templates and emergency kit checklists, are available on the ReadyPA website. Padfield also encourages social media users to follow PEMA on Facebook and Twitter for timely emergency preparedness information. Its important to note that you do not need to have a Facebook or Twitter account to access the information.

    61,000 PA workers become

    eligible for overtime Jan. 1

    Department of Labor & Industry Secretary Jerry Oleksiak is reminding employees and businesses about a new federal law that will make 61,000 workers in Pennsylvania newly eligible for overtime pay of time and a half that went into effect Jan. 1.

    Oleksiak is also urging Pennsylvania lawmakers to do more for workers, who will continue to earn an embarrassingly low minimum wage of $7.25 in the new year.

    This new federal law means some of our workers can begin earning the overtime pay they deserve, but far too many are struggling to make ends meet because of Pennsylvanias stagnant minimum wage, Oleksiak said. It is time for the commonwealths lawmakers to recognize the value of our hardworking men and women and increase their wage. Every one of our neighboring states has invested in their workers by boosting the minimum wage. It is unconscionable that Pennsylvania has not done the same in more than a decade.

    Oleksiak added that Senate Bill 79 would give nearly 400,000 Pennsylvanians a much needed first step towards a more secure financial future. He said the bill had overwhelming bipartisan support in the Senate, but the House failed to consider this compromise legislation prior to leaving for the holiday break.

    Oleksiak said an increase in the minimum wage will give working Pennsylvania families a better livelihood, save tax dollars by reducing the number of individuals and families receiving public assistance, and strengthen local economies by increasing workers paychecks. The increase in earning thresholds under the new federal overtime regulations is a step in this direction, ensuring that more employees who work overtime are fairly and fully compensated for their labor.

    The new federal overtime rules, under the U.S. Department of Labor, went into effect on New Years Day, Jan. 1, 2020.

    Who is eligible for overtime?

    With a few exceptions, all hourly employees who work more than 40 hours per week.

    Most salaried employees who work more than 40 hours per week and earn less than $684 per week/$35,568 per year are eligible for overtime, regardless of their job duties.

    Most salaried employees who are not engaged in an executive, administrative, or professional capacity, regardless of how much they are paid.

    Who is not eligible for overtime

    Salaried employees who are engaged in an executive, administrative, or professional capacity and make more than $35,568 per year.

    Other occupations specifically exempted by the minimum wage act.

    For more information on the new overtime rule, call 1-800-932-0665 (L&Is Bureau of Labor Law Compliance), email RA-LI-SLMR-LLC@pa.gov or visit dli.pa.gov.

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    Plymouth man charged with conspiring to steal tools, catalytic converter - Wilkes Barre Times-Leader

    2020 Lancaster County outlook: Here are some trends, stories to keep an eye on in the new year – LancasterOnline - January 5, 2020 by admin

    A big election year. Construction on a new hospital. The continued evolution of Park City. Later starting times at a Lancaster County school district.

    These are some of the trends and events that LNP's reporters will cover in 2020.

    Here are some details of what to expect.

    The third president in American history to be impeached is seeking a second term in the Oval Office in 2020.

    And while Lancaster County voters will have their say in sticking with Donald Trump or electing a new commander in chief, they also will have plenty of local races to help decide.

    Republican Congressman Lloyd Smucker is seeking reelection to what would be his third two-year term in the U.S. House of Representatives. Democrat Sarah Hammond, of East Lampeter Township, is his only challenger as of Tuesday.

    All members of the countys Pennsylvania House delegation are up for reelection, with three facing spring primary challengers:

    There are still several Democratic candidates lining up to take on Republican incumbents in the state Legislature in the fall general election. The committees for both parties will choose which candidates to endorse at their endorsement conventions in late January.

    An aerial view of Park City Center in April 2018. The now-vacant Bon-Ton store is in the foreground, while the former Sears store is at the top.

    The evolution of Park City Center will continue, with changes coming to the spaces formerly occupied by anchor stores Bon-Ton and Sears, as well as other mall spaces.

    Shoppers will see the first results of the malls strategy to fill voids triggered by the ascent of e-commerce with entertainment and dining, lessening the malls reliance on traditional retail.

    The upper floor of the darkened Sears, which closed in March, will come to life as a Round1 family-friendly entertainment venue in the fall. A vacant space next to it will become a UFC Gym in January.

    Park City also plans to raze the Bon-Ton building, dark since August 2018, creating a new main entrance to the mall. On the stores footprint and its parking lot, Park City wants to add two free-standing restaurants.

    But Park Citys challenges arent over. Longtime tenant Gap is closing in late January, giving the mall another significant space to fill.

    Rock Lititz Studio goes live with a blast of light, sound and confetti in this LNP file photo.

    While Park City is focused on filling existing space thats become vacant, Rock Lititz is focused on constructing more space because its existing buildings are filled to capacity.

    In August, the Warwick Township campus for the live-event industry unveiled plans for a $41.7 million expansion that will add 220 jobs to the 405 jobs already there.

    Rock Lititz is proposing two major additions to the initial building on the campus, the Rock Lititz Studio concert-rehearsal structure. Rock Lititz also is proposing two more large free-standing buildings.

    (A fifth building being proposed a black-box theater is being developed independently.)

    Township supervisors gave conditional approval on Dec. 18 to a land development plan for the expansion. Rock Lititz hopes to begin construction in early 2020, said General Manager Andrea Shirk. Construction will take 12 to 18 months.

    This is the Rutter's at 405 Historic Drive in Strasburg Borough.

    In 2019, increased development in both rural and suburban communities roiled residents who said they've had enough.

    In 2020, little is expected to change for both stakeholders.

    Rutters is still seeking expansion in Lancaster County despite a setback in Manheim Township after 200 residents rose in opposition to a store and gas station near a residential development.

    The convenience store chain recently proposed a liquor license transfer to a planned store in Gap. Supervisors in Salisbury Township will hear the request in January.

    Meanwhile, planners for Oregon Village hope to break ground on the 72-acre mixed-use development sometime in the new year. Two appeals the conditional approval must first be settled before the project moves forward.

    This shows the preliminary master plan for Penn State Health's proposed hospital campus near Route 283 in East Hempfield Township. The hospital is in the upper right of the drawing, near the existing Oak Leaf Manor North personal care home. A widened and realigned State Road cuts across the center, intersecting with Harrisburg Pike, which runs across the length of the image. The left side of the campus shows a Sheetz; unspecified "fast casual" restaurant; and three buildings for "professional, scientific and technical services." To the far left, and not shown, the plan proposes a 100-unit apartment building for senior adults.

    Hospitals dominated Lancaster County health care news in 2019, and that seems likely to continue in 2020 as the four major health care systems operating locally Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health, Penn State Health, UPMC Pinnacle and WellSpan Health continue to compete.

    Penn State Health, which has long treated local patients at Hershey Medical Center in Dauphin County, this summer announced plans to build its first Lancaster County hospital in East Hempfield Township.

    It will be located along Route 722 (State Road) between Harrisburg Pike and Route 30, with a tentative opening in 2022.

    Lancaster General announced two big projects this year. The first, which could see construction start as early as this winter and take up to three years, will roughly double the size of the emergency department in its flagship Lancaster city hospital.

    The second will add proton therapy to its outpatient cancer center in 2021.

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    WellSpan recently announced a renovation that will add new technology to its Ephrata cancer center. The project is expected to conclude in the spring.

    Ephrata High School students enter their bus at Eastbrooke Drive and Blackberry Lane in Ephrata on Friday, November 1, 2019. Ephrata Area School District will ask its school board in January to start school an hour later beginning next school year, making it the first district in Lancaster County to do so.

    From student privacy at Eastern Lancaster County to school start times at Ephrata Area, Lancaster County school districts are dealing with several issues that will stretch into 2020 and perhaps beyond.

    Elanco is embarking on a projected $2.4 million plan to renovate its locker rooms after it approved a controversial student privacy policy that called for unisex changing and restroom areas in the districts locker rooms and bathrooms.

    The district expects to receive bids for the project in early 2020 and finish by 2021.

    Ephrata, meanwhile, is considering pushing back its school start times in response to various studies that say teenagers are suffering from a lack of sleep. Some parents, however, say the move would only tighten the window students have to finish homework and other evening activities.

    The administration expects to make a recommendation to the school board in January or February 2020, following a monthslong study. Other districts, such as Solanco and Hempfield, have also began studying the issue.

    At Conestoga Valley, school board members are again evaluating a proposed charter school TLC Leadership Charter School. The privately run but taxpayer-funded school would serve up to 200 students in kindergarten through 12th grade who struggle with school phobia, anxiety and other mental health issues.

    The school board rejected TLCs first application. Expect a decision in early 2020.

    Finally, as LNP reported earlier this month, more than $365 million worth of major school construction projects is in the works across Lancaster County. The most notable is Penn Manors $99.9 million high school renovation and construction project, which is projected to finish in December 2022.

    This is a view of Ewell Plaza looking south from the 100 block of North Queen Street Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019.

    This should be a big year for public construction projects in the city.

    At Ewell Plaza, the Lancaster Parking Authority is expected to finish demolition of an old annex and begin building the 360-space Christian Street Garage, a $29 million project that includes space for the Lancaster Public Library to relocate.

    Despite pushback, the authority is moving ahead with having Miami-based R&R Studios, with public input, create art for the facade.

    Meanwhile, work should begin on the replacement for Fire Station No. 1 at 425 W. King St. It should take about eight to 10 months to complete the work. After its done, it will be Fire Station No. 3s turn at 333 E. King St. The two stations combined will cost about $12.7 million, up from initial pre-bid estimates of about $10 million.

    In the southwest, the city plans to renovate Culliton Park, a project estimated at $3 million.

    Also, Lancaster will begin a five-year project to abate lead paint hazards in more than 700 households, using a $9.1 million federal Housing & Urban Development grant, the largest in city history, supplemented by local support.

    Original post:
    2020 Lancaster County outlook: Here are some trends, stories to keep an eye on in the new year - LancasterOnline

    Norman police seek brazen burglar in series of thefts – Norman Transcript - November 25, 2019 by admin

    Ian Rohrback came eye-to-eye with a brazen burglar before chasing the thief out of the house and down a residential street in northwest Norman.

    Making the situation worse, the thief was standing in the bedroom where Rohrback and his wife were sleeping at about 6 a.m. Tuesday.

    "I heard a noise and asked my wife 'what was that?' Then, I realized a guy was in our bedroom. As I said that, he bolts out of our room and I take off after him," Rohrback recalled.

    Rohrback came within six feet of the burglar before the thief turned around and yelled he had a gun, warning his pursuer to back off.

    "Being a new dad, I wasn't going to do something to get shot so I stopped," Rohrback said.

    The burglary is one of three Norman police are investigating with the same method of operation, which involves the intruder going into a house at night as residents sleep.

    Norman police Capt. Jamie Shattuck said the burglaries are "somewhat similar" and have occurred within a mile of each other in the vicinity of 36th Avenue NW and Robinson Street. Rohrback lives in an area east of Brookhaven Village.

    Investigators are trying to determine if all of the burglaries are linked.

    For now, Shattuck's advice to homeowners is to put a barrier between the burglar and those in the home, and then call 911. His advice doesn't include trying to confront the intruder.

    "Most burglars don't have the intent of encountering anyone," Shattuck said. "Generally, if they're approached, they will flee."

    So far, the descriptions have been vague, including the one provided by Rohrback. However, Rohrback said he didn't have his eyeglasses on, which prevented him from getting a good look at the thief. Still, Rohrback said the intruder did have a "heavy Oklahoma accent" and was a bit shorter than him.

    There may be more than three burglaries for police to investigate, according to Norman resident Chris Moxley, who is a neighborhood watch coordinator in the 36th Avenue NW and Robinson area.

    Social media has been a tool for residents who are telling their stories about being burglarized. Some residents claim the burglar is targeting cash, wallets and jewelry as he prowls through the homes under the cover of darkness.

    "It's a pretty dangerous situation either for the people or the guy himself if someone has a gun," Moxley said.

    Oklahoma's "Make My Day" law allows the use of deadly force by individuals who have a "reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily harm" after someone illegally enters their home or business.

    Moxley said most of the burglaries have occurred in the Brookhaven and Prairie Creek housing additions. Apparently, the burglars are targeting cars with unlocked doors, giving them immediate access to garage door openers and the house. That was the sequence of events in the burglary of the Rohrback residence, the homeowner said.

    The best description of the burglar hasn't help police too much. So far, the thief has been described as a "skinny white guy" wearing a baseball cap and carrying a backpack. In at least one instance, the burglar was riding a bicycle, Moxley said.

    "We're not going to stop pursuing this," he said.

    Tim Farley366-3539tfarley@normantranscript.com

    Originally posted here:
    Norman police seek brazen burglar in series of thefts - Norman Transcript

    This stunning 17th century country estate is on the market and could be yours – Somerset Live - November 25, 2019 by admin

    A 17th century country estate that comes complete with outbuildings and sits in eight acres of sprawling land is on the market and could be yours.

    The Manor Farmhouse in Kington Magna, near Gillingham , boasts seven bedrooms, six bathrooms and six reception rooms along with a gym, a games room across three buildings and an outdoor swimming pool.

    With a paddock, pond, lake and extensive gardens, the property also provides extensive views of the Blackmore Vale.

    It comes with a hefty price tag, though, with the Grade II listed house and land on the market for 2,150,000.

    According to Rightmove, a 25 year mortgage on the property with an annual interest rate of 2.4 per cent and ten per cent deposit of 215,000 will cost an eyewatering 8,584 a month to pay off.

    A spokesman for Knight Frank, which is advertising the property, said: "Manor Farmhouse is a handsome Grade II listed country house dating from the mid-17th century with attractive later additions.

    "It is constructed of stone and painted brick under a tiled roof.

    "It sits in an elevated position, set well back from the village road and benefits from light and spacious accommodation, with the majority of the reception rooms offering impressive views over the gardens and the Blackmore Vale beyond.

    "Manor Farmhouse is full of character and the current owners have restored the whole property to an exceptional standard bringing everything that was required up to date, both internally and externally.

    "The house includes many period features, including flagstone floors, open fireplaces with ornate stone and wood surrounds, pretty cornicing and fitted shelving.

    "The outbuildings lie to the north of the house around a large gravel drive with ample space for parking cars. On the western side is garaging for three cars.

    "To the east is the large stone barn which comprises the games room, gym and bike room.

    "Adjoining the large stone barn, the cottage has independent services and includes a kitchen and sitting room downstairs with two bedrooms and a bathroom on the first floor."

    Main House: Hall, drawing room, dining room, library, sun room, kitchen/breakfast room, sitting room, laundry room, boot room, toilet, principal bedroom with bathroom, shower room and dressing area, four further bedrooms, three further bedrooms, box room

    Barn Cottage: Kitchen, sitting room, two bedrooms, bathroom

    Stone Barn: Party/games room, gym/home office, bike room, toilet, utility room

    Grounds: Triple garage, workshop, log store, machinery store, formal gardens, front and rear driveways, swimming pool, tennis court, paddock, pond, lake

    The Knight Frank spokesman added: "Kington Magna is a small and picturesque village, which lies some eight miles between the attractive towns of Shaftesbury to the east and Sherborne to the west, both of which provide a large range of facilities.

    "The popular Stapleton Arms is in nearby Buckhorn Weston.

    "Gillingham is approximately three miles away and has a variety of shops including Waitrose and a station with direct trains to London Waterloo or Exeter to the west.

    "The A303 can be joined to the north about 4.5 miles away."

    Anyone wishing to discover more about the Manor Farmhouse in Kington Magna can do so on Rightmove or contact Knight Frank on 01935 810062.

    To subscribe to our daily newsletter, enter your email address into the box at the top of this story .

    To keep up to date with our latest news, follow us on Facebook and Twitter .

    Find our Bath Facebook page here or Somerset's can be found here .

    Alternatively, follow us on Twitter - @BathLive and @SomersetLive .

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    This stunning 17th century country estate is on the market and could be yours - Somerset Live

    Inside the Shropshire house where the Royal Family planned to shelter if Britain was invaded during the Second World War – Country Life - November 25, 2019 by admin

    A house prepared as a safe retreat for the Royal Family in the Second World War has recently returned to family ownership and is thriving once again. Marcus Binney reports.

    Pitchford Hall is a 16th-century house that vies with Speke Hall, Liverpool, and Little Moreton, Cheshire, as the most beautiful timber-framed house in England. When the young Queen Victoria visited aged 13 in 1832, she caught its character perfectly, describing it as:A curious looking but very comfortable house. It is striped black and white, and in the shape of a cottage.

    The approach to Pitchford is along narrow by-roads, with a distant view of the Welsh hills, so it is easy to understand why, in 1940, it was one of three country houses chosen as safe retreats for the Royal Family in the event of a German invasion during the Second World War. The others were Madresfield Court, Worcestershire, and Newby Hall, Yorkshire.

    A special company of the Coldstream Guards, based at Bushy Park next to Hampton Court and named the Coats Mission after its commander Sir James Coats, was set up to transport the Royal Family to these retreats.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    Defences at each property consisted of a series of slit trenches around the house, carefully concealed so no one would be alerted to the plans. Dispatch riders were trained to precede the royal convoy, stopping ahead at every crossroads to halt traffic.

    If the enemy reached the Midlands, the plan was to rush the Royal Family to Holyhead for transport to Canada by the Royal Navy. A pantechnicon had been fitted out as a travelling living room and Gothic Revival Hatley Castle, built in 1908 on Vancouver Island, had been bought as the residence in waiting.

    It would be interesting to know if the King and Queen had a voice in choosing the houses. As Duke and Duchess of York, they had visited Pitchford in 1935. For Pitchford, it meant a lucky escape from requisitioning and, when James Lees-Milnearrived on March 17, 1944, investigating houses for the National Trust, he found it looking highly romantic amid spring-flowering crocuses and primroses.

    The architect W. A. Forsythconducted him upstairs to a small, shapeless room in the west wing, where the owner Sir Charles Grant was sprawled listening to the European news. He galloped me through the house, pointing out the contents which he thought he would give with it His proposals are vague, and he does not intend to transfer any land over and above what the house stands on.

    On the lawn, Forsyth met Lady Sybil, daughter of the Prime Minister, Lord Rosebery, who took him to the Orangery where she lived: Her sanctum converted by her into one large living room with a fire and one bedroom.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    The gift to the Trust never took place and, two years later, Sir Charless son Robin married, acquiring a dashing and adventurous stepdaughter, Caroline Combe, to whom Pitchford later passed. Caroline, who had earned notoriety by releasing white mice at Queen Charlottes Ball, was a reed-thin model and beauty, and later a fashion journalist and boutique owner in swinging London. After turning down Mickey Grylls (and, reputedly, resisting advances from Marlon Brando) she married, in 1968, Oliver Colthurst, the younger son of Sir Richard Colthurst, 8thBaronet of Blarney Castle, Co Cork.

    By the 1980s, Pitchford was in urgent need of extensive repair. Happily, the best man for the job was nearby, Shropshire architect Andrew Arrol, who directed an exemplary programme of repair over 12 years. This was generously supported by the Historic Buildings Council, energetically chaired at the time by Jennifer Jenkins (wife of Roy, then our man in Brussels). Arrol recalls her visit: I told Oliver dont talk too much and dont look too prosperous. Instead Oliver, in best Errol Flynn style, appeared in a smoking jacket with a large cigar and a glass of brandy.

    The house revived to mesmerising beauty, Pitchford had only just begun to open to the public when, in 1992, tragedy struck. The Colthursts were caught in the Lloyds insurance meltdown. The Trust drew up a rescue plan, but the 7 million endowment sought was beyond the National Heritage Memorial Funds (NHMF) resources.

    Intrepidly, Sir Jocelyn Stevens, newly appointed chairman of English Heritage, offered to step in and garage the house, as he put it, while he arranged a rescue plan. The Colthursts offered to gift the house to the nation, if 1.8 million could be paid for the contents, which the NHMF was prepared to do. But Sir Jocelyn needed Government approval and this was refused.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    I was there when the news came through, not from the Minister, but from the BBC. The Champagne was on ice and the omens looked fair. Instead, it turned into a wake.

    A contents sale was held on the lawn on September 2829 and, in November, the house sold to an unnamed buyer, who later transpired to be a Kuwaiti princess. Although the prospects initially appeared good, the hall was left neglected as the stable range served briefly as a stud. The pill was doubly bitter for the Colthursts, for they not only had to sell the house to pay the Lloyds debt, but also had to repay every penny of the 350,000 historic-buildings grants.

    Nonetheless, the saga took a sudden, happier turn when the Colthursts daughter, Rowena, and her husband, James Nason, a political lobbyist, bought back the house in 2016. Pitchford is on the mend visits can be booked throughwww.historichouses.org and the Generals Quarters in the west wing is a comfortable holiday let, sleeping 14. The Orangery, where Lady Sybil Grant lived, has recently been restored for events and still retains her 1930s interiors.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    The recorded history of Pitchford goes back to Edward the Confesssor and, from about 1086, the manor was held by Sir Ralph de Pytchford. The name presumably refers to the natural well of pitch, which still survives, close to the house. Another Ralph inherited in 1211 and built the church above the hall. The astonishing wooden effigy of his son, Sir John de Pitchford, is one of a series of remarkable tombs surviving there.

    The traces of an early hall house, probably 13th-century, are recorded by Arrol, subsumed within the west wing of the present building; the main evidence is timbers blackened by open fires visible in the roof space of the west wing, marking a pair of Queen posts.

    The estate sold in 1301 to Walter de Lang-ton and passed through various hands before being bought in 1473 by Thomas Ottley. He made his fortune from finishing Welsh cloth and he also had a house in Calais. It was his descendant in the mid 16th century, the prosperous Shropshire clothier Adam Ottley, who remodelled Pitchford in its present form, extending the medieval house and creating the three-sided entrance courtyard with gables.

    Early views and photographs, including those published inCountry Lifein 1901, show the courtyard enclosed on the fourth side by an arched gateway and wall, probably dating to this period.

    Ottley turned to Master John Sandford for the work, a member of an important dynasty of Shrewsbury carpenters. The earliest mentioned was Humphrey Sandford, who was sworn Freeman of the Shrewsbury Guild of Carpenters and Tylers in 1540.John, probably his elder brother, was warden of the carpenters guild and, when he died in 1566, probably before the hall was finished, he was still in possession of a farm leased to him by Ottley in 1549, as part of the consideration for building the mansion place.His sons, Ralph, Thomas and Randall are also recorded as carpenters.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    The house bears all the hallmarks of Sandford family work. Among these are bold diagonal strutting, pilasters terminated by grotesque heads and carved gables with trailing vines.Previously, pomp and wealth were manifest in close studding massed ranks of upright timbers, as seen in the surviving medieval range but here, a new language of bold patterning emerged, part geometric, part abstract, a constant play of quatrefoils, herringbones and lozenges.

    Its all the more important as the first extant example in a group of such houses sometimes collectively described as the Shrewsbury School built by prosperous Shrewsbury clothiers intent on becoming knights and squires.The earliest dated house of this type in the town itself was the now demolished Lloyds mansion in the square, built by David Lloyd in 1570. Another is Irelands Mansion in the High Street and the front elevation of the Drapers Hall of 157682.

    It must have been Ottleys son who commissioned a pair of remarkable incised alabaster tombs in the church for his parents, himself and his wife. The former is inscribed as having been drawn and graven by John Tarbrook [of Be]udly carver Anno 1587. Sir Francis Ottley (160049) was a strong Royalist and Governor of Shrews-bury who helped initially secure the county for the King and negotiated the surrender of Bridgnorth, but the Parliamentarians prevailed and he fought a desperate campaign to free his estates from sequestration.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    His eldest son, Richard Ottley (162670), a captain in the Royalist army, was knighted on June 21, 1660. A gentleman of the privy chamber to Charles II, he sat as MP for Shropshire from 1661 until his death on August 10, 1670.

    Pitchford retains from about this period a tree house set in a spreading small-leaved lime. It first appears on a map dated 1692 and is timber-framed to match the house.Internal plasterwork is mid 18th century and was probably by Thomas Farnolls Pritchard, creator of the famous Ironbridge at Coalbrookdale. He had an extensive country-house practice and was presumably also responsible for the slim, lean-to additions to the main house supported on clustered columns.

    These created a cloister-like arrangement of service access to the main rooms. He may also have inserted sash windows in parts of the main building, which are illustrated in some early photographs.

    Pitch Hall, Shropshire. Paul Highnam/Country Life Picture Library

    From 188389, the house was romanticised in a glorious and subtle way by George Devey to create a seamless, harmonious whole. Devey transformed a plain and over-sized late-Georgian wing (also shown in early photographs) into an attractive kitchen courtyard that blended perfectly with the 16th-century house. Ingeniously, he retained part of the colonnades and, inside, an impressive stone cantilevered staircase rising to the second floor survives.

    Devey also created a new entrance on the north side, opening into the great hall, ennobling the skyline by increasing the number of star-form chimneystacks and allowing the owners to create a garden in the south court opening onto the park and river below. He also replaced the sashes with Elizabethan-style leaded panes.

    Inside, Devey enlarged the great hall by extending it into the dining room, after which he moved the old hall panelling into a new drawing room. One key painting to survive in the house by virtue of being a listed fitting is a 1611 portrait by a follower of Hieronymus Custo-dis (d. 1593) of Lady Cassandra Ridgeway, whose daughter married Richard Ottley.

    The new owners have now embarked on the challenging task of bringing back, or replacing lost contents, intent on making Pitchford Hall a family home once again which can fascinate visitors as its complex history is unravelled year by year.

    To find out more about Pitchford Hall, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, visit http://www.pitchfordestate.com.

    Today, we might think of spending a few months in a world heritage site in Southern Italy as an enormous

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    Inside the Shropshire house where the Royal Family planned to shelter if Britain was invaded during the Second World War - Country Life

    For the first time ever, John Abraham gave his fans a tour of his stunning bike collection worth Rs 1.25 cr – GQ India – What a man’s got to do - November 25, 2019 by admin

    The OG bike movie, Dhoom is where we first became familiar with John Abraham's passion for biking and superbikes. Ever since, the actor and producer has been fairly vocal about his adoration for motorcycles and is also known for his fascinating collection that boasts of some of the most iconic and luxurious bikes. The fans, however, never truly got the chance to have an explicit look into the bike enthusiasts garage.

    Not until a day ago, that is, when the actor shared a video on his Instagram page giving a tour of his garage, filled with high-end superbikes, that he adorably introduced as his babies.

    First one in the collection was the black Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R, which was first introduced at the 2005 Tokyo Motor Show and released for the 2006 model year as a replacement for the ZZ-R1200. It's priced at around Rs 19.7 lakhs. The next ride that the actor presented as his fantastic baby was the fiery red Aprilia RSV4, which he described as pretty intense in terms of sound in the video, priced at approximately Rs 22 lakhs.

    John then moved on to introduce the new baby in his collection, the blue Yamaha R1, priced at around Rs 18-20 lakhs. Following that, was the red Ducati -V4 Panigale, which is a sport bike, at a price of Rs 20 lakhs. The actor moves forward to the white MV Agusta F3 800, which he describes as a beautiful piece of art. This one is an 800cc middleweight sport bike, at a price of around Rs 18 lakhs.

    The last one in the collection was the black Yamaha VMax 1700 cc 60th anniversary special. This ride costs about Rs 25 lakhs, making it the most expensive bike in the actors collection that was displayed in the video.

    The comment section of the video was filled with fans and fellow bike enthusiasts lauding the actors impressive possessions, many giving suggestions for additions to the collection and some also asking for a more detailed vlog-style tour.

    Now we don't know whether John Abraham will oblige his fans with an even more detailed video of his bike collection or not but what we do know is that the actor will be next seen in Pagalpanti, a comedy movie with and ensemble cast including Anil Kapoor, Ileana DCruz, Arshad Warsi, Urvashi Rautela, Pulkit Samrat and Kriti Kharbanda. A bike racing film, based on riders, is also in the works starring the actor, directed by Rensil DSilva which will be shot at the Isle of Man.

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    For the first time ever, John Abraham gave his fans a tour of his stunning bike collection worth Rs 1.25 cr - GQ India - What a man's got to do

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