Day: December 2, 2016

Pine Grove farm supplies tree to Governor’s Mansion

Levans Christmas Tree Farm donates children’s tree

By Rebecca Zemencik, Managing Editor •


Submitted Photo Greta, the Levan’s dog enjoyed spending time with the men from the Governor’s Mansion who came to Levans Christmas Tree Farm, Pine Grove to select a 14’ Frasier for the mansion.

PINE GROVE – It was no joke or prank call, Levan Christmas Tree Farm, Pine Grove, was chosen to supply a fresh Christmas tree to the Governor’s Mansion in Harrisburg.
“We got a message Monday, Nov. 21 from a 717 phone number and the caller stated they were calling on behalf of the governor’s office about a Christmas tree,” said Linda Levan, who owns the tree farm on Spittler Road, with her husband Bill. “We thought it was a prank call because our family is known to do that stuff, chuckled Linda. We asked our daughter Pam, who is a teacher at Hegins-Hubley Elementary School to return the phone call for us.”
Pam returned the call and was excited to learn that a man who works maintenance and groundskeeping at the governor’s mansion suggested a Christmas tree from Levan Christmas Tree Farm in Pine Grove. Julie, a woman who works in the governor’s mansion said that Jodie has always been pleased with the trees he purchased there and that’s why he suggested them.
On Tuesday, two men from the governor’s office came to the farm and chose a 14’ Frasier tree. The tree was placed in the governor’s mansion and was to be used as the children’s tree and was adorned with ornaments made by children.


Millersburg to reconsider policy for purchases

Director says policy allows spending at will

By Rob Wheary, Staff Writer •

MILLERSBURG – The Millersburg Area School Board will look at a policy that essentially gives the district superintendent carte blanche when it comes to spending in certain areas.
While discussing the bills at their meeting on Nov. 21, board member Donald Harris discussed a $3,108 bill for blinds and curtains purchased for administrative offices after board member Ryan Novinger asked if three quotes were gotten on the matter.
According to Millersburg’s “Delegation of Responsibility” policy: All purchases that are within budgetary limits and the supplies needed for the daily operations of the school district may be made upon authorization of the Business Manager and/or Superintendent. Items not obtained yearly must follow the following guidelines:
— $10,000 or less – items that are big ticket items under $10,000 but over $3,000 will be listed in the budget;
— $10,001 to $19,100 – must get three quotes (either in writing or by telephone)
— $19,101 or more – must advertise for bids.
Harris expressed concern that Haupt was abusing the power to make any purchase he seems fit, the second time for in as many months.
“If it’s under $10,000 and its educationally required, and an emergency, spend it and get it done. If it’s not and blinds are certainly not, this board needs to be included in that and getting three quotes. We need to start doing it,” Harris said.
Board member Scott Roadcap said that the policy has been reviewed twice with no changes made. President Mark Rothermel noted that Harris was in charge of the policy committee at the time the policy was approved and asked if Harris endorsed it back then.
“I don’t believe I endorsed it,” Harris replied. “As committee chairman, I presented the policy to the board with the majority of the committee’s recommendations. I am asking for the meeting and if it comes great. If it doesn’t, then I will ask for it again when this problem arises again.”
Other board members expressed their thoughts on the policy as well. Morgan Wagner said that getting the three quotes in an emergency situation is impractical.
“I think it should go back to the committee so that we can find some common language to differentiate between a need for the continuing education of our student, or is it a need that can wait for the proper process to take place. How do you put that into the language? I don’t know,” said Bruce Kance, who noted that it was last looked at in 2014.
“I just have a hard time understanding why getting three quotes is such a difficult thing,” Harris reiterated. “It’s three phone calls.”
At the end of the discussion, Rothermel noted that there was no violation of the current policy, but requested that the policy committee meet to discuss the matter, and report back at the January board meeting. When the announcement was made, Roadcap asked to be removed from the committee.
“We’ve been down this road twice already,” Roadcap said. “I don’t need to go over it a third time.”
“I would ask you to stay on and attend the meeting, to state your position,” the board president asked of Roadcap.
Cheerleading discussed
At the start of the meeting, athletic director Jeffrey Prouse spoke to the board about competitive cheerleading.
Prouse said that the district went to a switch more into the competitive spirit side of cheerleading four years ago, but have only competed in one competition in four years. He told the board that Upper Dauphin’s athletic director Brent Bell approached him about a co-op program.
“Their numbers are down, our numbers are down. I’m a little leery about this because their director has not approached Upper Dauphin’s board on the matter,” Prouse said.
Superintendent Thomas Haupt said they had the discussion and decided this was a decision that they could not make administratively and looked to the Millersburg board for guidance.
After the discussion, many directors said that they would not even consider it if Upper Dauphin does not approach them about the matter.
In other business:
— District business manager Cathy Artz gave the board a timeline for the 2017-2018 budget with the first date of note being Jan. 26, 2017, when the board will have to either approve a resolution stating that it will approve a final budget with a tax increase not to exceed the adjusted index of 3.3 percent, or make a preliminary budget available for public inspection, subject to state approval, to request a tax increase higher than the index.
— The board voted to amend the school physician services agreement with Dr. John Forney and Family Practice Center, P.C. to add grade level physicals to the duties.
— Millersburg will hold its reorganizational meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 1, and its next regular board meeting at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 19.

Williams Valley falls short in state quarterfinals

Last-minute scores gives Steel-High 24-20 win


MIKE LEITER/For The Citizen-Standard Williams Valley’s Levi Engle (11) tries to position himself to stop Steelton-Highspire’s Lathaniel Webster-Spencer during the PIAA Class A quarterfinal game Nov. 25 at Kemp Memorial Stadium, Shamokin. Steel-High won the game 24-20 to advance in the tournament, ending Williams-Valley’s season at 12-2. At left, The Williams Valley faithful stand up and cheer after the Vikings football team scored a touchdown in the PIAA Class A quarterfinals. The fans packed the home bleachers to support the team in the contest, outnumbering the Steel-High fans at least 10 to 1.

By Rob Wheary, Staff Writer •

SHAMOKIN – It was a scene that played out several times this season, Williams Valley drives with time winding down in the game, getting that go-ahead score that pulled out the victory.
In this game, though, Williams Valley found itself on the wrong end of the comeback, as Steelton-Highspire scored with 90 seconds left in the game to pull out a 24-20 win in the PIAA Class A football quarterfinals at Kemp Memorial Stadium, Shamokin on Nov. 25.
Williams Valley head coach Tim Savage, dejected after the game, said he understands the heartbreak that several teams that played against the Vikings this season felt.
“You feel what Marian felt, what Tri-Valley felt,” Savage said. “You know what the people we’ve done it too feel. To come so close, and see it all slip away like that.”
With Williams Valley leading 20-17 with six minutes left in the game, the Vikings went into ball control amassing first downs and keeping the ball out of Steel-High’s hands.