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Volunteers' fine examples: Leaders take note

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Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or

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Friday, May 3, 2013, 8:57 p.m.

As in all counties in Pennsylvania, Armstrong is a series of small boroughs and townships and of school districts that cross those municipal lines.

Against this background, there are several things we do exceptionally well. Some examples:

• Relay for Life volunteers are some of the best fundraisers in the nation, creating an enthusiasm to raise contributions for cancer-related programs that is unequalled for its size. It crosses municipal boundaries.

• Volunteer youth sports programs provide enormous opportunity for local kids, involving hundreds of adults from all communities.

• Despite difficult economic times, volunteers have created and maintained an excellent network of trails on former railroad right-of-ways. And the local area has raised the funds and created a very impressive new YMCA facility. Both are regional enhancements.

• The ARC Manor drug and alcohol counseling and treatment center continues to enhance its services in the area and is constructing a new building in the West Hills.

Now, if we could just get our elected leaders to work together with the same enthusiasm and creativity.

Our area is not unique in limited intergovernmental cooperation. But given the examples set by their constituencies, we believe a little networking would not go amiss — perhaps officials visiting one another's meetings to explore synergies to address problems as expenses rise on overburdened taxpayers.

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