Editorials

Resources can help beat cold

Despite reflecting significant improvement, the numbers reported last week by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission related to its annual mid-winter resurvey of households without heat-related electric and natural gas utility service still indicate a serious basis for concern. But most ...

Archway decline shocking

Good intentions remained in play over the past year at Archway Ministries, which has a church at Fourth Street and Fifth Avenue in Altoona. But something terribly wrong was evolving at the same time — something that came to a head on Feb. 9 after city code and fire inspectors gained access ...

FBI culture must be addressed

Could the mass murder of 17 people, most of them children, at a Florida high school last week have been prevented? We will never know with certainty. What we do know is that someone in the FBI was tipped off months ago that someone named Nikolas Cruz had threatened to “be a professional ...

Florida terror brings another level of fear

The killing field that Parkland, Fla.’s, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School became Wednesday afternoon has injected new fear into parents, teachers, school officials and communities as a whole. The incident, which claimed 17 students and teachers and left another dozen with wounds, also ...

Don’t be latest to apologize for ‘Oh, Internet’

Parents, no doubt you’ve warned your kids about the dangers of social media. A photo or a thought, launched into cyberspace, can have the force of a SpaceX rocket — and can be even harder to retrieve. That was the lesson learned by Ryan, who on Feb. 3 tweeted a comment from an Associated ...

Planning can’t be minimized

The Blair County Hazard Mitigation Planning Committee’s name alone should spawn public interest in the work it will be doing in the months ahead. While there are people who regard planning as a “dry,” tedious subject, others recognize the process as a necessity for conditions, ...

Special day to celebrate all that is love

Love covers a lot of ground. There is the love between a parent and a child. There’s love for one’s partner, sibling, friend, pet. There is even the very real love a child feels for a favorite stuffed animal. Any parent who has had to wash that stuffed animal or search frantically for ...

Reade derails progress

Pennsylvania has a Sunshine Law for good reasons. One of them is to avoid questionable situations like the one that has evolved over the past month in Cambria County’s Reade Township. Reade, which has experienced much controversy in the past but seemed headed in the right direction based ...

House was just bluffing on reduction

For a while, there was a basis for cautious optimism that the Pennsylvania House of Representatives was serious about reducing the size of its membership. During the 2015-16 legislative session, the House voted to trim its size, and the lower chamber seemed poised for the required second ...

Make your Valentine gift from the heart

Bouquets upon bouquets of scarlet roses, heart-shaped powder candy with messages like “Be Mine” and “Soul Mate,” bite-sized chocolates meticulously wrapped in wax paper, dinner-for-two bargain deals — call these couples’ galore or single people’s incessant reminders of their ...

Rail probe should be welcome

Two crew members were killed early Sunday when an Amtrak passenger train on the wrong track crashed into a line of freight cars. More than 100 people were injured in the accident, which occurred in South Carolina. Rail accidents seem to have become a regular occurrence. Sunday’s was the ...

Wolf not ‘kicking the can’

With Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf having delivered his fourth and final first-term budget proposal, attention shifts to the Legislature, which will alter significantly what the governor has put forth. Specifically, the state chief executive’s attempt at getting $1 billion in additional ...

PA budget still needs addressed

Pennsylvania Republican legislative leaders and state Budget Secretary Randy Albright said in December that the commonwealth’s deficit problems were resolved with the passage in October of the Fiscal Year 2017-18 revenue package. They said that long-drawn-out preparation exercise, completed ...

At least those on death row are still alive

Despite not being worthy of much sympathy, the five Pennsylvania death row inmates who are suing prison officials over the issue of solitary confinement have, in that federal court action, made a point that many people don’t dispute. That is that solitary confinement can expose prisoners to ...

Congress should mend FBI

It should have come as no surprise that some in the FBI have seen their power as something to be protected and perpetuated through political dirty tricks. This is the agency that was ruled over for decades by the late J. Edgar Hoover, after all. The agency’s headquarters, incidentally, ...

Examine prison system

Pennsylvania could use a study geared toward those who have gotten a break from the state’s criminal justice system over the past half-decade as part of the commonwealth’s effort to trim inmate populations at its correctional facilities. Specifically, the study should tally, within the ...

Controlling mass calls important

In the weeks and months ahead, many — if not most — Pennsylvania telephone customers could be asking “What’s not to like?” about legislation in the state House of Representatives aimed at protecting them from falsified caller identification displays that oftentimes “greet” them ...

Time’s right for downsizing of Legislature

The question of whether the Pennsylvania House of Representatives should be reduced in size has moved another step closer to the state’s voters for a decision. Nothing should be allowed to sidetrack voters from finally having the opportunity to decide that important issue. House Bill 153, ...

Debit card for jurors good idea

Blair County’s decision to step into the 21st century regarding jury duty pay isn’t a major development. Nevertheless, the move demonstrates a commendable commitment to efficiency — efficiency that’s a basis for saving money and county employees’ time, now and in the future. Rather ...

Good news for AMED, Lakemont

Details of what prompted AMED’s decision to pursue construction of a $500,000 substation are secondary to the fact that this longtime Altoona area emergency-services provider will continue to be a first-class responder for those whose well-being and lives depend on its excellent professional ...