Friday, February 27, 2009

EDITORIAL; Bitter sweet news. An end of the Robber Barons?

News reports that the "Rail yard move is under way" bring mixed feelings.

Yes, enabling the expansion of Franklin and Marshall College and connection of road patterns in North West Lancaster are very desirable things.

But the underhanded, undemocratic manner in which the dump site was chosen should concern citizens not only because of the abridgement of the rights of the neighbors, not only because F & M and General Hospital should know better, but also because tens of millions of tax payers' money to relocate a benign asbestos ladened dump may have been saved if a more suitable location indeed exists.

We at NewsLanc are hoping this episode bring an end to an era dominated by the self serving dealing of S. Dale High of The High Group (The Convention Center Project) and , on behalf of F & M, by college President John Fry, (the Norfolk Southern railyard project.)

In both cases these community leaders dragged along unwitting accomplices who should have known better. Fulton Bank was sand bagged with the Convention Center Project and stopped funding the partnership and separated itself as quickly as possible after sordid facts were brought to its attention. Lancaster Newspapers, Inc. was involved because the misguided Steinman heirs sought to help downtown, and mediocre executives unwisely collaborated with what High for the prospect of owning the Marriott for only a token investment.

Worse, the Lancaster Newspapers, Inc. trashed journalistic standards and used its power to further its financial interests in Penn Square Partners and to destroy the public careers of two decent officials.

All that the future rail yard neighborhood was asking was that an impartial expert examine alternate locations and confirm that the dump site was preferable, all things considered.

All the former County Commissioners and convention center critics were seeking was a professional feasibility study and abidance with its conclusions.

NewsLanc hopes and believes that the future will be better. Dale High and John Fry have been unmasked for what they really represent. No longer will Lancaster Newspapers, Inc. be able to mis-lead with impunity.

NewsLanc is small but growing; we are tough minded and well funded. Like George Soros, we believe that an informed public over time will make better decisions. We pledge to stay the course!