The City of Scranton Reminder for Fourth Quarter Payroll Tax

Entities conducting business within the City of Scranton are reminded that the due date to submit their fourth quarter tax return for the 2023 Payroll Preparation Tax is February 28, 2024.  A person shall be deemed to be conducting business within the City if they engage, hire, employ, or contract with one or more individuals as employees, partners, or is self-employed and, in addition, does at least one of the following:

  1. Maintains a fixed place of business within the City;
  2. Owns or leases real property within the City for profit;
  3. Maintains a stock of tangible, personal property in the City for sale in the ordinary course of business;
  4. Conducts continuous solicitation within the City related to such business; or
  5. Utilizes the streets of the City in connection with the operation of such business (other than for the mere transportation from a site outside the City, through the City, to a destination outside the City.)    

Institutions who are exempt from the Payroll Preparation Tax as a result of their status as a nonprofit are required to file quarterly returns claiming their exemption.

Returns submitted after February 28, 2024, will be subject to penalty and interest on the balances due.

The Payroll Preparation Tax is a tax levied separately by both the Scranton School District and the City of Scranton.  The 2023 Payroll Preparation Tax rate for the Scranton School District is 0.7553 percent and the 2023 Payroll Preparation Tax rate for the City of Scranton is 0.2787 percent.  The combined 2023 Payroll Preparation Tax rate is 1.034 percent.

The City of Scranton and the Scranton School District have both appointed Berkheimer Tax Innovations, Inc. to administer the Payroll Preparation Tax on their behalf.  Tax forms are available on Berkheimer’s website at hab-inc.com/pptforms.  Additional information, including Frequently Asked Questions, can be found at scrantonpa.gov/payroll-prep-tax-information, https://www.scrsd.org/departments/business-office and hab-inc.com/ppt-faq.

Please direct all questions regarding the Payroll Preparation Tax to Berkheimer by emailing ebpt@goberk.com or by calling (610) 599-3140.

Broadway in Scranton Offers Leap Day Deals

It’s an offer so good, it’s four years in the making! In honor of Leap Day, this Thursday, February 29th only, patrons can purchase select tickets for $29 to these two shows at Broadway in Scranton.

This offer is valid on February 29th only and on select seats to the opening night performances of COME FROM AWAY (April 5th at 7:30PM) and PRETTY WOMAN (May 17th at 7:30PM). This offer is limited to 2 tickets per purchase.  This promotion is subject to ticket availability and does not apply to previously purchased tickets.

Patrons must use code LEAP to redeem this offer. Tickets may be purchased online at BroadwayInScranton.com and in person at the Scranton Cultural Center Box Office (10AM – 5PM).

COME FROM AWAY * Scranton Cultural Center April 5 – 7

Broadway’s COME FROM AWAY is a Best Musical winner all across North America!

This New York Times Critics’ Pick takes you into the heart of the remarkable true story of 7,000 stranded passengers and the small town in Newfoundland that welcomed them. Cultures clashed and nerves ran high, but uneasiness turned into trust, music soared into the night, and gratitude grew into enduring friendships.

Don’t miss this breathtaking new musical written by Tony® nominees Irene Sankoff and David Hein, and helmed by Tony-winning Best Director, Christopher Ashley. Newsweek cheers,“It takes you to a place you never want to leave!”  On 9/11, the world stopped.  On 9/12, their stories moved us all. (Show age recommendation: 10+)

PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL * Scranton Cultural Center May 17 – 19

PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL, based on one of Hollywood’s most beloved romantic stories of all time, springs to life with a powerhouse creative team led by two-time Tony Award®-winning director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell (Hairspray, Kinky Boots, Legally Blonde). Brought to the stage by lead producer Paula Wagner, PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL features an original score by Grammy® winner Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance (“Summer of ’69”, “Heaven”), and a book by the movie’s legendary director Garry Marshall and screenwriter J. F. Lawton. PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL will lift your spirits and light up your heart. “If you love the movie, you’ll love the musical!” (BuzzFeed News).

Featured in the musical is Roy Orbison and Bill Dee’s international smash hit song “Oh, Pretty Woman,” which inspired one of the most beloved romantic comedy films of all time. Pretty Woman the film was an international smash hit when it was released in 1990. Now, 30 years later, PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL is “Big romance and big fun!” (Broadway.com). “Irresistible! A romantic fantasy. A contemporary fairy tale,” says The Hollywood Reporter. PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL delivers on all the iconic moments you remember. Get ready to experience this dazzling theatrical take on a love story for the ages. Are you ready to fall in love all over again? (Show age recommendation: 12+)

Deadline is Near to Apply for SBA Physical Disaster Loan

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is reminding businesses of all sizes, private nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters in Pennsylvania affected by the severe storms and flooding that occurred Sept. 9, 2023, to apply for physical damage disaster loans by the March 25 deadline.

Anyone in Lackawanna County and the adjacent counties of Luzerne, Monroe, Susquehanna, Wayne, and Wyoming in Pennsylvania with physical property damage should apply for the low-interest disaster loan.

Businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets.

Disaster loans up to $500,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate. Homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $100,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property, including personal vehicles.

SBA can also lend additional funds to businesses and homeowners to help with the cost of improvements to protect, prevent or minimize future disaster damage. Approved loans may qualify for a loan amount increase of up to 20 percent of their physical damages, as verified by the SBA, for mitigation purposes. Eligible mitigation improvements may include a safe room or storm shelter, sump pump, French drain or retaining wall to help protect property and occupants from future damage.

Interest rates can be as low as 4% for businesses, 2.375% for private nonprofit organizations and 2.5% for homeowners and renters with terms up to 30 years. Interest does not begin to accrue, and monthly payments are not due, until 12 months from the date of the initial disbursement. The SBA sets loan amounts and terms based on each applicant’s financial condition.

Applicants may apply online and receive additional disaster assistance information at SBA.gov/disaster. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. For people who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7-1-1 to access telecommunications relay services.

The deadline to apply for property damage is March 25, 2024. The deadline to apply for economic injury is Oct. 25, 2024.

Link to the fact sheet can be found here.

Dale Carnegie Course to Offer Discount for Chamber Members to Attend Immersion Seminar

The Dale Carnegie Course to Offer 10% Discount for all Chamber members to attend Immersion Seminar!
Hello fellow chamber member:

Professional development is exciting and essential for companies to thrive! With the challenges of 2024 still not entirely known, now is the time to prepare us and our teams!
Who might you consider sending?

The Dale Carnegie Course is a comprehensive learning journey that is suitable for those who yearn for professional growth. Based on his famous book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, this course provides the tools and strategies to better deal with challenging people and situations, and as a result, become more confident and effective in all aspects of life.

Course Specifics:
1. Strictly Business: The Dale Carnegie Immersion Seminar
2. 3 Full Days – March 12-14 from 8:30 am – 5:00
3. Learning Objectives:
4. Build Greater Self-Confidence
5. Strengthen People Skills
6. Enhance Communication Skills
7. Develop Leadership Skills
8. Reduce Stress and Improve Our Attitude

Location – Hilton Garden Inn, 242 Highland Park Blvd. Wilkes-Barre
Virtual Kickoff will be Mar. 5, 12-1:30, 90 minutes
Original registration fee $2195 per person. Use 10% discount code enter

DALE10 fee will be $1995 per person with discount applied.

If you have any questions or need assistance – please contact Rick Franks). 724-480-2221 or richard.franks@dalecarnegie.com

Settlers Hospitality to Host Chili & Wing Cookoff Return

It’s the hottest ticket in town! The Chili and Wing Cookoff returns to Silver Birches in Hawley on Sunday March 3, 2024. The event, hosted by Settlers Hospitality, brings together over 20 of the best chefs from local restaurants, schools, and organizations as well as talented home cooks. Contestants vie for the title of Best Chili and Best Wings during a heated competition at the Waterfront at Silver Birches.

The action begins at noon with the awards presentation slated for between 3:30 and 4 p.m. Contestants include local favorites such as Runaway Train Brewery, Draft’s Bar & Grill, Gresham’s Chophouse, The Dock on Wallenpaupack, Hop Baron’s and Paupack Watering Hole. A panel of guest judges will select the winners. In addition to bragging rights, first place winners receive a $100 cash prize and a trophy. Second and third place winners also take home a trophy. Everyone who attends gets a ballot for the People’s Choice Award and a chance to vote for their favorite dishes. The coveted title also brings a $100 cash prize for the winners plus trophies for first, second and third place.

A ticket entitles guests to sample each of the wing and chili offerings. Tickets are $30 per person and $15 for children ages 5-10. Silver Birches not only hosts the tasty competition, but also supplies each participant with 80 pounds of wings and all the cups, plates, spoons, napkins, and wet naps necessary for service, at no charge. All proceeds from the Cookoff benefit the Settlers Cares Foundation, which aids local hospitality employees in times of crisis.

“Chili and Wing Cookoff is a signature event for us. We are delighted to host this fun, community gathering and be able to support a cause that’s near and dear to our hearts,” states Settlers Hospitality Owner/CEO Justin Genzlinger. Attendees may buy a chance for a 50/50 raffle, which will also aid the hospitality employee crisis fund.

Settlers Hospitality, Bold Gold Media Group, and Runaway Train Brewery sponsor the Chili and Wing Cookoff. Tickets are $30 and are available at the door. Call 570-226-4388 for more information or visit SilverBirchesResortPA.com

America250PA Announces Semiquincentennial Bell at the Hawley Silk Mill

The Pennsylvania Commission for the United States Semiquincentennial (America250PA), in partnership with Settlers Hospitality, announced today that it will place a bronze, permanent Semiquincentennial Bell at the Hawley Silk Mill later in the Fall of 2024, in commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the United States in 2026.

America250PA staff; Settlers Hospitality founders, the Genzlinger family; and special guests, including Congressman Matt Cartwright, Drew Popish from the Office of Governor Josh Shapiro, PA State Senator Lisa Baker, PA State Representative Joseph Adams, and Wayne County Commissioner James Shook, attended the announcement today in celebration of the upcoming bell installation later this year.

“The America250PA Semiquincentennial Bells will lift up the stories of communities that have been untold or not widely known yet shaped the history here in the Commonwealth,” said Cassandra Coleman, Executive Director of America250PA. “America250PA is so excited to be dedicating its second Semiquincentennial Bell at the Hawley Silk Mill this fall to highlight the remarkable work of the individuals—immigrants, primarily women—who helped forge this great nation during the Industrial Revolution right here in Pennsylvania.”

Justin Genzlinger, CEO/Owner of Settlers Hospitality—the presenting sponsor of the Semiquincentennial Bell—shared his thoughts on the importance of the bell: “The Semiquincentennial Bell at the site of the Hawley Silk Mill will herald the story of immigrant labor that helped fuel the Industrial Revolution,” he said. “We’re proud to honor their place in history and preserve that legacy for their descendants who continue to call this community home. We look forward to this becoming another important destination along Pennsylvania’s Route 6 that will enrich the cultural experience for residents and visitors to the Pocono Mountains Lake Region.”

The Semiquincentennial Bell will include an inscription reading, “In the fabric of the 19th century, immigrant women and children were essential threads to the industrial economy as they worked in silk mills and factories like this one. Their descendants remain here.”

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Hawley Silk Mill, located in the scenic Pocono Mountains, has been a vital part of the region since 1880. Originally known as the Bellemonte Silk Mill, this beautiful landmark is still preserved today through the generous support of The Settlers Hospitality Group and includes two additional properties, the Cocoon Coffeehouse and Bakery, originally constructed for silk storage, and the J.S. O’Connor American Rich Cut Glassware Factory (now Ledges Hotel), a technological marvel of its time as one of the first in the nation to be powered by water and lit by electricity generated from its own electrical plant. Both are also listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Hawley Silk Mill is architecturally as impressive today as it was in 1880, constructed by hand with primarily immigrant labor in the High Victorian Gothic style, and believed to be the largest Bluestone building in the world. It also remains a symbol of the entrepreneurial spirit, grit and determination of the early settlers and immigrants, primarily young women, whose hard work ushered in the Industrial Revolution. This region is well known as the beginning of the labor movement, which included championing safer working conditions, child labor laws, and mandatory public education. The young female immigrants employed at the Hawley Silk Mill played a significant role in shaping the workplace safety and benefits that we all enjoy today.

Bohlin Cywinski Jackson will design the Semiquincentennial Bell site at the Hawley Silk Mill campus. The Wilkes-Barre, PA, based firm was the architect for the Liberty Bell Center in Philadelphia and designed the plan to repurpose the Hawley Silk Mill into the vibrant lifestyle center that it is today.

For more information about America250PA and the Semiquincentennial Bell project, visit: https://america250pa.org/.

For more information about the Settlers Hospitality, visit: https://settlershospitality.com/.

For more information about the Hawley Silk Mill, visit: https://hawleysilkmill.com/.

Alumnus and Trustee to Chair Marywood’s Community Leadership Celebration

Michael E. Bugno, a Marywood University alumnus and trustee, will chair Marywood University’s 11th Annual Community Leadership Celebration on Thursday, May 2, 2024, 5:30 p.m., at the Center for Athletics and Wellness on the University’s campus. The event will honor community leader and Marywood alumna Mary Ellen McDonough, with a special spotlight on retiring Marywood president, Sister Mary Persico, IHM, Ed.D.

Mr. Bugno, formerly of Clarks Summit, is an accomplished experiential marketing and strategic global events leader, with more than 20 years of planning and executing successful corporate trade shows and events for mid-sized and Fortune 150 companies. Presently, he is the Vice President, Enterprise Experiential Marketing, at Fiserv, based in New York, N.Y.

Prior to Fiserv, Mr. Bugno held a number of leadership positions at Lectra, Food Network, and Comedy Central. He began his career at Walt Disney World, where he was involved in College & International Marketing and Recruiting. Mr. Bugno graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in theatre arts administration in 1998, and he has had a longstanding relationship with the university ever since. He received the Marywood Alumni Association Recent Graduate Award in 2004 and served as a Marywood University trustee from 2006-2015. In 2019, he again joined Marywood’s Board of Trustees. Mr. Bugno has co-chaired and/or worked on sponsorships for the Annual Community Leadership Celebration (CLC) since its inception in 2014.

The CLC is Marywood’s signature fundraiser, providing special support to Marywood students and honoring individuals in the community who exemplify Marywood’s core values in leadership and service to others. Proceeds from this year’s event will benefit campus improvements as part of the EMPOWER Campaign.

To join Marywood University in honoring Mary Ellen McDonough and in recognizing Sister Mary Persico, IHM, at the 11th Annual Community Leadership Celebration on May 2, please visit marywood.edu/clc for ticket and sponsorship information, or call (570) 348-6238.

WBRE/WYOU Produce Super Bowl Commercial

WBRE and WYOU produced a 30-second commercial promoting the 28/22 News Team and their Home Field Advantage. The commercial aired last night in Super Bowl LVIII on WYOU 22. 

LINK TO COMMERCIAL: https://www.pahomepage.com/news/28-22-news-homefield-advantage-makes-big-game-debut/

The WBRE 28 and WYOU 22 news team has the most locally born and raised journalists. This gives our team and therefore our viewers the Home Field Advantage in Northeast Pennsylvania. The commercial takes its inspiration from the Notre Dame football classic film, Rudy.

“I love the commercial and I especially love how the team came together to brainstorm and produce this spot. The excitement can be felt throughout the whole building.” Said Andrew Wyatt WBRE’s Vice President and General Manager.

This commercial is the 7th in the award-winning series. It was announced on Friday, February 9, 2024 that the series has been recognized by the Pennsylvania Association of Broadcasters for Outstanding Television Station Marketing. 

The Home Field Advantage commercial aired Sunday night during Super Bowl LVIII on WYOU 22.  

The RailRiders Pinstripe Pals Program Returns to Support Local Youth Leagues

The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, in partnership with US Foods, are thrilled to announce that the Pinstripe Pals program has returned in support of area youth softball and baseball leagues. Applications are being accepted now and 10 youth leagues will be selected for the program once again this year.

League representatives are encouraged to fill out the Pinstripe Pals application form and submit a 500-word (or less) essay describing why their league should be chosen. Each of the ten leagues selected will receive a $500 sponsorship from the RailRiders to assist in league expenses, as well as a $500 gift card courtesy of US Foods, which can be used to help teams pay for concession stand products and supplies. Applications are due by March 1.

Each league selected will have the opportunity to participate in a pre-game parade at PNC Field before a RailRiders home game and the opportunity for RailRiders assistance with league fundraising. Selected leagues will have a photo of their choice placed in the GuideRail game day program on their league’s designated night. One of the teams in each league will serve as the “Field of Dreams” club on that night and take the field with the RailRiders players.

Applications can be found on our website under the Community tab or upon request. Completed applications can be emailed to Robby Judge at rjudge@swbrailriders.com, faxed to (570) 963-6564 or mailed to:

SWB RailRiders

Attn: Pinstripe Pals

235 Montage Mountain Rd.

Moosic, PA 18507

Winning leagues will be announced on March 8. For more information on the Pinstripe Pals program, presented by US Foods, please contact Krista Lutzick or Robby Judge at (570) 969-2255. 

The 2024 season begins on March 29 in Buffalo with the RailRiders home opener slated for April 2 against the Syracuse Mets.  Season ticket plans are available now on www.swbrailriders.com or by calling (570) 969-BALL.