Something is broken in the borough of Bellefonte.
In 2013, I returned after a 40-year absence. The night I arrived, I walked around town to find only a bar and a tobacco shop open. Within months, my bank closed its local branch and the state store moved out of town. Today, Bellefonte is littered with vacant storefronts.
What’s perplexing is that Bellefonte has just about everything going for it. The historic downtown is filled with picturesque commercial and government buildings, and its nearby residential streets are an outdoor museum of grand, well-kept Victorian homes.
The town is kissed by major interstate highways and home to a natural wonder — the 11-million-gallon-a-day Big Spring
A famous trout stream runs through the award-winning Talleyrand Park at the edge of downtown. Most important, Bellefonte is 15 minutes away from Penn State, where students, staff and visitors spend more than $1 billion a year off campus.
Bellefonte should be thriving. Something is holding it back.
Bellefonte’s local government has made questionable decisions and is likely responsible for the town’s stagnation. Therefore, it’s time to refresh Borough Council by electing people who can help change the town’s direction.
One of the few chances to do this in 2015 is to vote for Joanne Tosti-Vasey in the Democratic primary May 19.
Change is necessary and this is a golden opportunity.