Sunday, July 1, 2018

About Town

This week's photos from around Columbia...

(Tap/click on photos to see larger, clearer images.)

Post office parking lot...
Can you dig it?
Possibly, but you can definitely saw it.

Saint Peter Apartments

 A sparrow in the works at Fifth and Chestnut 

 If the spirit moves ya...


 Turtle on the road near the railroad tracks at the bottom of Walnut

And an accomplice! 
Both were removed to safety, courtesy of Columbia Spy

It's not always easy to come out of one's shell.

 A waterfall, complete with OSHA-unapproved walkway at a remnant of the old canal system. 

 More of the same

 A little further down the line

 Yet another view

 A lot of these kinds of things hang overhead, down at the railroad tracks.
But what do they actually do?

 That house on the hill in York County

 Discussing the parking lot project on Commerce Street

 Codes car creeping

 Uh-oh, they don't have trailers.
Will they get ticketed?

 Fixing the post office parking lot

Looking over - and above - the town

 Your taxes are levied from beneath the clock tower and the steeple.

 A sad tribute to Columbia's greatest general and his wife.
Their headstones are in disarray, and a larger marker was placed in front of them.

 Fortunately, this marker is still standing proud.

 Greens at the Presbyterian Church.

 Marking North Seventh.
Can you dig it?
We're about to find out.

 The claw, about to engage.
Construction continues at the former firehouse on Tenth Street to make way for an animal shelter.

Here's the construction trailer.

 No, officer, you may NOT ticket those cars.
They're in a parking lot.

 Sidewalk sawing
(Second and Walnut)

 Cloud canine, tethered of course

 Another clue on the damaged Heritage Drive fence.
Sherlock Holmes could put it all in context.
Quick, someone call Benedict Cumberbatch!

 Somethin' happenin' here - what it is ain't exactly clear.

 Long level

 Smallish outhouse, fit for a leprechaun or a hobbit

 Figurines in a window along South Ninth

 Rule Number One for playing the cello:
Hold on to the bow.

 In case you need help paying for food

 Here's the phone number.

 Faded, abused, and molested, but standing the test of time

 Trying to beat the heat

 Whoever left this box gets the "Lazy Ass of the Week Award."

 Especially since this trashcan was right there.

 Dobson fly

 The butchers are back!

 Show your patriotism -
sit on the flag.

 Politicians (and propagandists) demonize the press in order to cover their sins.

 Now he's up on North Ninth.
Probably ticketing a vehicle in a handicapped space.
By the way, have you noticed all the handicapped spaces in town?
(Three on the 900 block of Spruce, for example.)
It's almost as if the borough is handing them out "like candy."
So, who's minding the candy store?

 Is this enforceable?
Didn't know the Turkey Hill Experience owned Linden Street.
Or was this another giveaway from the borough to a private enterprise?

 More activity at Colonial Metals.
This driver checked in with the security guard one day this week, then entered and exited the grounds with his truck several times.

 For example, here - exiting one of the lower gates

 And here - backing in

 Over at Rotary Park

A rarity -  
You usually see J.C. Broome or S. Logan

 Susquehanna Heritage took ownership of our trolley pretty quickly, even though we Columbia Borough taxpayers are footing the bill.
By the way, did you know the "free" trolley is costing us several hundred dollars a day?
(And almost no one rides it.)

 Muddy waters...
T.S. Eliot said, "I do not know much about gods; but I think that the river is a strong brown god..."
John Hartford sang, "Where else but a muddy old river would a person want to be?"

 Activity of a sort at Colonial Metals

 CBFD responding to a call on North Fifth

 Beating the heat

 Lotsa lights

 Out for a walk

 Pretty pretty

 Fireworks for sale on the 300 block of Chestnut

 Old-time light fixture at Peerless Hardware on Chestnut

 Columbia skyline

 Way down the river at Turkey Hill

 Weaving a wake

 Throwing? Ranting? What?

 Row homes on North Second

 Columbia River Park, from a height

 Kayaks and canoes at Chiques Rock Outfitters

 Still falling apart

 Four chimneys at the old Poplar Street School

 Trailer, old school

 Knight in shining tin

 Some sort of mythological creature

 A rare species of butterfly on Poplar Street

 Web-draped flower

Police call on the 700 block of Chestnut 

 Keeping a watchful eye

Bird convention 
Some of them flew in.

 At the Columbia Presbyterian Church at Fourth and Locust

 More information

 Even more information

 Yep, there it is.

Big hole in the ground at the bottom of Locust 
Is the apartment project still "on"?

 One of Columbia's many ferals
(Many, many ferals)

 OK, we get it.

 On the Veterans Memorial Bridge


The vulture that we reported on previously has been evicted...

...but has taken up residence at a new address.

Hanging a flag

 Overgrown at the high school, which raises the awkward question,  "Can the borough ticket the school district?"
(Submitted photo)

 The Watt & Shand store at 250 Locust, after a fire
(Submitted photo)

And here's a sneak preview of a new sedan: "The Unicorn"
(Submitted photo)


Anonymous said...

The firehouse was like another childhood home but its gone now i guess:(

Anonymous said...

Where did baseball come from in the money pit sign ? The money pit didn't look full AGAIN either.

Anonymous said...

THIS WHOLE BOROUGH IS OUT OF CONTROL MIS USE OF TAX DOLLARS CALL 1-800-922-8477 let the state look at it, and let the state do the restaurant inspections too , we all see the lack of HELM doing his job for 25 years and now the codes is pounding home owners to fix up what was ok all that time, and don't say he didn't have the man power , he didn't do his job plain and simple...

Anonymous said...

The bank at the high school was always mowed before , they bought a special mower just for banks so whats up (quick ticket for anyone else)

Anonymous said...

What happens when the trolley pulls into the money pit with beer on it? The man cutting concrete without safety glasses needs a safety class soon .

Anonymous said...

Close the high school ! BAM!

Anonymous said...

We should all take a trolley ride since it's free at least get something for our money.

Anonymous said...

shut down the whole school system

Anonymous said...

They haven’t mowed that in years it’s too dangerous they been pulling the stuff out by hand n it’s a lot of work but since they laid off all of the second shift janitors there are only 2 dayshift janitors left that do that kind of work for the whole district so it’s kind of hard for 2 people to take care of everything unless maybe they get the new doo they hired to step up to the plate n help them but I don’t see that happening anytime soon

Anonymous said...

Sad for all those kids but they aren't able to attract the best teachers either. Just those that don't mind babysitting.

Anonymous said...

Who is the person that is going to run this aminal shelter have not heard a.thing about it or is this hush hush to

Anonymous said...

I mowed up to that part of that hill, to dangerous even with the tank that we had. where the weeds are we donated plants to fill in for run off and weed control could only give the school so much. Also Tom bragged he saved the borough $ 200,000 by getting rid of full time people, so it is what it is, unfortunately. I'd like to see how well the cleaning is now the outsourced the custodians.

Anonymous said...

The bottom of Locust st. is not going to be completed because of money issues!! Also, they want tax dollars and other tax breaks!!

Anonymous said...

I don’t see how he is saving that much money those people hardly made anything n it was only about 5 fulltime ppl that were devoted to their jobs I too would like to see how janiking is cleaning for the 8 bucks a hour they are making n not to mention they could have kept the fulltime ppl n not hired a new director of Operations for the few people they have left

Anonymous said...

There is a large sign at Locust and Bank Streets that states who is providing the funding for the apartment project and it's not Columbia Borough.

Anonymous said...

That's what he told me, wages, benefits, like insurance and Retirement, Vacations, sick days that build up, so on and so on, remember the retirement is part employee and the school district and the state. Like over 22 % for every year, Not like the teachers who retire at $3500.00 a month on average. Plus SS.

Anonymous said...

Over the past 9 months, the maintenance department reduced the staff by 6 full time employees. We added 2 part time employees. This reduced District expenses by over $200,000.

Let me assure you that every employee and every expense of the District is being scrutinized daily. While your thoughts of adding part time people wherever and whenever, may work, the District has advertised for 3 months for part time employees and has not received enough qualified applicants. This is not just Columbia but is the same in many Districts and industry. So, it is easy to say add part time people, but the reality is there are not qualified people available.

Again, my appreciation for bringing your concerns to our attention. If you have more concerns, please feel free to email me and copy Mr. Combs.

Tom Strickler
Columbia Borough School District

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Columbia let them demolish without a bond committment to rebuild ?? - Some things never change !!

Wil Torbert said...

The man who owns Kleen Rite is opening it in his wife's name. Pointless, and will be closed or repurposed in a minimum of three years as part of their business.

Anonymous said...

they should pay there back taxes FIRST

Anonymous said...

who played base ball there?

Anonymous said...

LOOK PEOPLE WE CAN DO THIS <,Back door stuff has to stop

Anonymous said...

Tom, I appreciate your candor, but the reason you have a small hiring pool is because nobody wants to work for Columbia School District. In the past few years and more so recently, the vote of confidence for this district is very low. Also, working part time is more of a hassle for people who need to work full time. I am sure it is also a hassle for you to not have the grounds maintained the way it should be and in a timely manner. Sometimes just getting rid of full timers and replacing with a few part timers is not enough.

Anonymous said...

How about the fact 2 days after the custodians were told they would be out of jobs the Columbia Borough School District posted they were looking for 2 fulltime lead custodians It seems strange to me if they were trying to save money they would be hiring 2 fulltime ppl to replace the ppl they just laid off n not offer any of them the jobs to begin with oh that’s right they were getting paid too much money n too many benefits that they worked years to get n why would they need to hire a director of operations for the few people they have left that right there is a big waste of money

Anonymous said...

The email from Tom was because I asked him why don't they put 2 part time people at one school because a female was working late by herself, it was safety question I asked him, he replied very quickly and told me more then I asked.

Anonymous said...

One moved up to high school from Taylor and the other quit I heard so they needed 2 one at Taylor and one at Park.

Anonymous said...

That happened after they already posted those jobs n why did they move the guy from Taylor to the high school they already have a boss up there besides they only hired that guy 3 or 4 weeks before they told the 2 nd shift custodians they would be laid off they never posted that job they just gave it too a guy who was a friend of someone at the school n at Park School they gave that job to a young man that wasn’t even a custodian for more then a year instead of posting it or offering to someone more experienced I have a feeling they knew what they were going to do long before they notified the custodians of getting laid off

Anonymous said...

I agree that is what they do all the time evey thing behind cloed doors something needs to be done to stop this they sre braking the law and we all know who is ahead of this

Anonymous said...

Any truth to the new assistant principal being a spouse of a school board member ? Must lack applicants here also.

Anonymous said...

Why can the school get away with high grass and weeds and citizens get quick tickets?

Anonymous said...

This school system is nothing but a money pit just like the river park!

Anonymous said...

At least open bank street up , no need to close it.

Anonymous said...

Should the sign at the money pit state REMOVING PROPERTY Again no prof reading by the officials .

Anonymous said...

Question did 375 kinderhook road ever get a permit after the fact of digging and putting in a retaining wall with electric lites???

Anonymous said...

Probably not. Give it a rest or do something about it.

Anonymous said...

It's pitiful how taxes went up then I see they are hiring an administrative assistant at the boro for $20.35 per hour probably to help the boro manger if these people can't handle these jobs why take them. Norm did it alone

Anonymous said...

Why does Tom Strickler's say that the staff was reduced by six full time custodians and not even mention the part time custodians that lost their jobs also. There were two at Park and I'm pretty sure there were others.

Anonymous said...

And why weren't these part time jobs that supposedly were advertised offered to the part time people let go as they would most certainly be qualified?

Anonymous said...

Pocket Change - Norm isn't here now