(L to R) Anne Hogya, Pittston Library Director, Thomas Williams, USDA Rural Development State Director, and Barbara Quinn, Library Board President, display artist renderings of the library expansion slated to begin this summer. USDA photos.
Nestled among mountain regions between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania the city of Pittston is the gateway to the Wyoming Valley. The city gained prominence in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a booming coal mining center. After experiencing many ups and downs, Pittston is experiencing a rebirth as family businesses come back to the downtown area. With local, state and federal funding from USDA Rural Development, Transportation Enhancement Grants and state gaming revenue grants, Pittston is halfway through a 20-year revitalization project that includes continued upgrades to the streetscape, library and City Hall. Read more »
A large crowd of local officials, library patrons and staff filled the children’s section of the Pittston Memorial Library in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, on a hot May afternoon to hear good news from Senator Robert Casey. Smiles abounded as Senator Casey announced that the library is receiving a $48,000 USDA Rural Development Community Facilities grant for library improvements.
According to Senator Casey, the funding will be used to purchase 14 new computers, a new selection of children’s, nonfiction, large print, local history and audio books, bookcases, furniture, carpeting and other improvements. With the Luzerne County unemployment rate at 9.5 percent, (higher than the state average), the library’s computers and internet connection are a valuable resource for job seekers. Senator Casey also heralded local libraries as the “beginning of job creation–the beginning of education” where families can come for “tranquility, safety and peace of mind.” Read more »