NewsLanc.Com

    Providing Lancaster City & County with an Alternative Source for Local News and Commentary  _________________________________________________________
 September 29, 2007    Publisher: NewsLanc.com LLC       Combined Circulation 80,000 monthly         Volume 1, Number 43
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Book Says D. A. Donald Totaro Disregarded FBI's Request to Investigate Historic Murder
Connect the Dots!

The following is from "The Midnight Ride of Jonathan Luna" by William Keisling:

"Two days after [Assistant U. S. Attorney Jonathan] Luna's murder, on Saturday, December 6, 2003, citing an unnamed 'law enforcement official...who spoke on the condition of anonymity,' the Baltimore Sun reported, 'authorities could announce as early as Monday that the slaying was unconnected to Luna's job and was expected to be handled as a state murder case by the local prosecutor in Lancaster County, Pa - not as a case of federal kidnapping or the killing of a federal law enforcement official.'

"Lancaster County District Attorney Donald R. Totaro,
for his part, sounded less than enthusiastic, and kept referring reporters back to [U. S. Attorney] Tom DiBagio's office in Baltimore."

Totaro declined to look into one of the most important murder cases in the history of Lancaster County! Was it because he was reluctant to investigate the FBI who were deeply involved in illegal drug related activities that Luna had been ordered to discuss the next day in court? This made FBI agents prime suspects for Luna's murder.

Keisling suggests the FBI turned the case over to Totaro because they were confident that he wouldn't do anything.

They were right!

Newspapers / High To Receive 1/2 Proceeds For Naming Rights!

It was revealed at the Sept. 27th Convention Center Board meeting that 50% of the funds to be received for the convention center naming rights are to go to Penn Square Partners, although the Partners only have a financial interest in the adjoining Marriott Hotel, not the convention center!

April Koppenhaver, local businesswoman and political activist, reported that when she asked chairman Ted Darcus why this giveaway, he blurted out to the effect
"They asked for it so it was given to them." (Darcus remains on the convention center board.)

Penn Square Partners consists of subsidiaries of the monopoly Lancaster Newspapers, Inc. and The High Companies.


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With Another $1,000,000 Cost Overrun in August; Convention Center's Contingency Fund Close to Depletion

It was disclosed at the Sept. 27th Convention Center Board meeting that the cost overruns for the last 30 days came to over a million dollars and all but $118,465 in contingency funds have been exhausted with the project only 17% complete.

Art Morris, Chairman, said the Authority planned to be
"proactive" by making Wachovia Bank, the bond sponsor, aware of the problem in preparation for asking them to approve budget alterations. Morris also said there may be an additional $1,500,000 in state funds (read: taxpayer money) available to offset anticipated further extras.


Commissioners To Fill Board Vacancy
At the County Commissioners' Sept. 25th public meeting and in response to an inquiry from NewsLanc, Chairman Dick Shellenberger announced that the commissioners would soon fill a county seat that became available on the Convention Center Authority Board. Currently Deb Hall is authorized to serve beyond her normal term, awaiting word whether she will be reappointed or the commissioners will conduct a search for her replacement.

Shellenberger advised that all three commissioners had recently met for
lunch with Art Morris, Chairman of the Authority, to hear his views on “what kind of people would best serve on the Board.”

Shellenberger said the commissioners are now ready to address the vacancy.
Ignoring the Obvious About Downtown Truck Traffic

A lead article in the Sept. 23rd Sunday News is entitled "Keep on truckin', but not in city. Lancaster once again ponders what do about drive-through truckers, but who will take them?"

An earlier county planning commission study indicated that 90% of the trucks on city streets were making local deliveries so, even if an alternate routing was available around Lancaster City,
most trucks would still use city streets.

According to the article, "...with the convention center only 19 months away, officials are again dreaming the impossible dream" of doing something about relieving truck traffic.

If truck traffic is 90% local, if Queen and Prince streets are the main corridors north and south,
then why are the mayor and the self-anointed Lancaster Streetcar Company advocating that we further congest those two streets by running streetcars up them?

There is no reason to believe that more people including conventioneers would rather ride a street car than take a fifty cent, well marked, downtown loop bus; a far superior, flexible and cheaper solution.