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Editorials

For D.C., statehood not answer

Among the growing movements since President Joe Biden took office is the effort by some (read: Democrats) to grant statehood to the District of Columbia. The argument has some merits, most notably that the roughly 700,000 people who live in our nation’s capital are subject to paying federal ...

IRS still has way too much to sort through

The Internal Revenue Service has made the right decision, pushing back this year’s tax-filing deadline to May 17 from the usual April 15 date. On the weekend of March 13-14, the Mirror became one of those advocating for a deadline push-back, not only because of the challenges that the ...

McCrory’s requires fast action

The City of Altoona does not own the deteriorating, dangerous McCrory’s building on 11th Avenue but, at least temporarily, city taxpayers apparently will be footing the bill for necessary emergency-type actions related to that structure. According to a March 9 Mirror article, the city ...

Fishing: One opening day is right call

We have enjoyed the warmth of spring already, a good week before the vernal equinox, and then a dip back into cooler temperatures. But the sight of trout being tossed into area streams gives us hope that, yes, the back-breaking winter of 2020-21 is over. We look each year for the stocking ...

Gov. trying to influence with wording

For someone who purports to believe in free and fair elections, Gov. Tom Wolf has a funny way of showing it. During the primary election in May, voters will be presented with three ballot questions about proposed amendments to the Pennsylvania Constitution. Normally, questions like these ...

Transportation funding must be addressed

Gov. Tom Wolf’s new approach to identifying reliable long-term funding for Keystone State roadways and public transit systems faces numerous “potholes.” However, what the governor is proposing — a study commission — is a reasonable start-up vehicle for separating suggestions lacking ...

Mayor’s attitude troubling

In the 1970s, the Blair County borough of Newry had a councilman who would obstruct progress at the start of meetings, sometimes for close to an hour, by objecting virtually nonstop to entries in the written record of the council’s previous session. For the benefit of people unfamiliar, ...

IRS should push back its filing date

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, last year’s tax-filing season became a nightmare, not only for many millions of Americans awaiting refunds but also for the Internal Revenue Service itself. Most of the 2019 tax process remained sidetracked well into 2020 as COVID-19 continued to inflict ...

2021 tourism still too early to forecast

President Joe Biden’s announcement on Tuesday that the United States expects to take delivery of enough coronavirus vaccines for all adults in this country to receive vaccinations by the end of May is a big step in the battle against the pandemic. If that indeed happens, that would be two ...

Monitor McCrory building

Altoona isn’t the only city having to deal with deteriorated structures that undermine the positive aspects of the municipality. It is a fact that businesses’ exit to malls, shopping centers and other suburban sites, which ramped up in the 1960s, set the stage for long-term vacancies and ...

Local vaccine process needs shot in arm

For many, if not most, residents of the six-county Southern Alleghenies region, frustration and anger remain entrenched — and, in fact, continue growing — over the difficulty in setting up an appointment to receive the coronavirus vaccine. Likening that scheduling situation to a “train ...

Appvion closure creates shadow of uncertainty

Northern Blair County became the epicenter of an economic earthquake in 1970 when West Virginia Pulp and Paper Co. announced that it would be closing its plant in Tyrone Borough, putting an estimated 1,000 employees on the unemployment line. The mill, which opened in 1880, ended up surviving, ...

Address turnpike finances

Next year will open the proverbial window to some semblance of fiscal sunshine for the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. It is on July 1, 2022, that much of the turnpike agency’s annual supplemental-funding obligation to the state Department of Transportation for transit services under ...

Task force better late than never

Over the past year, the coronavirus pandemic has been fraught with errors and miscalculations, not only by Washington, but in numerous state capitals as well. The approximately half-million U.S. deaths from the virus — not to mention the millions of people who recovered ­— deliver a ...

State budget can’t include wishful thinking

Much criticism has been heaped upon Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf for a number of his decisions related to the coronavirus pandemic, and much criticism of the state’s chief executive will be forthcoming in response to ideas he put forth in his 2021-22 budget address on Wednesday. No surprise. ...

Incompetent error must be righted

Falling back on “human error” is cold comfort to some victims of child sexual abuse in Pennsylvania who must now wait at least another two years before they can pursue legal cases. But that seems the best officials can come up with as they try to explain how a proposed state ...

National Guard needed to aid PA vaccines

Is it time to call in the National Guard? We believe the answer is an emphatic YES. As we turn the calendar page to February, Pennsylvania was ranked either 49th or 44th — depending on which report you read — among the 50 states for administering the coronavirus vaccine doses it had ...

Sanders’ meme comical

If you’ve been on social media in the past couple of weeks, you’ve undoubtedly seen the bumper crop of memes featuring a mitten-wearing, crotchety-looking U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, at the inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris. The memes put ...

Financial concerns are legit

State and local governments, not only here but across the United States, are facing uncertain financial outlooks as the pandemic continues to wreak its multi-pronged devastation. The Wall Street Journal noted in a Jan. 13 article that “for governments that rely on property-tax revenues, the ...

Ultimate cost from Jan. 6 will be taxing

The total cost to American taxpayers for the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol isn’t destined to be known for some time — maybe not even this year. The bill continues to increase each day, however, not only in terms of repairs to physical damage inflicted by the rioters, but also for the ...