Lance: To the snow job that is the Laurel Mountain Ski Resort. Never mind the public money already squandered on this pipe dream when a private operator reopened the quad lift in 1999 — and went out of business in 2003. The state has plowed more than $513,000 into design work. But the facilities — under a lease with Seven Springs Mountain Resort — are no closer to opening. Why is this “resort” being publicly financed? Because no private operator with half a cerebrum would assume all the risk of this incredibly slippery slope.
Laurel: To Westmoreland County emergency crews. More than a dozen people were rescued from flooding in the aftermath of a monsoon-like storm that inundated the area with up to 2 1⁄2 inches of rain. Yes, this is the job of rescue personnel. And amid the chaos of rising floodwaters, they did it well.
Laurel: To the Flight 93 Advisory Commission. After a decade of meetings to plan the Flight 93 memorial in Somerset County, the panel is disbanding. What commission members accomplished, in partnership with other groups and government agencies, is a fitting tribute to the passengers and crew of the hijacked jetliner.
An observation: A Latrobe man will serve up to 50 years in prison for sexually assaulting two girls, ages 5 and 2. And for this, Frank Baker III, 24, who pleaded guilty, should be grateful. He could have faced life in prison. Notes Westmoreland Judge Rita Hathaway: “This is a gift from the commonwealth.”
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