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Alle-Kiski Laurels & Lances

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Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012, 8:59 p.m.

Lance: To the Freeport council and school board. The bodies will meet next week to discuss what to do with the junior high school and kindergarten properties when they close as part of the district's building and renovation program. But taxpayers aren't invited because, says borough treasurer Richard G. Hill Jr., “There will be plenty of time for public meetings.” What's wrong with now?

On the “Watch List”: UPMC. The tax-exempt status of the health care giant is under increasing scrutiny. Its untaxed holdings are vast. Compensation for executives is quite high. Its charitable care, while numerically high, is a small fraction of its income pie. Expect the matter to end up in court sooner rather than later.

Laurel: To setting an example. The wives of Sens. Pat Toomey and Bob Casey organized a tribute this week to the heroes of Flight 93, hijacked by terrorists during 9/11, to raise money toward the Somerset County memorial. Here's a prime opportunity for members of Congress to open their wallets and support an important public endeavor.

The “Big” return: Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, out for a month with shoulder and rib injuries, is set to play on Sunday against the San Diego Chargers. Pittsburgh, 7-5, pretty much has a lock on a wild-card berth. The Steelers could — could — end the regular season with an 11-5 record, hitting their stride just as the playoffs open.

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