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THUMBS UP: to the U.S. Supreme Court, which on Monday denied The American Farm Bureau's request to hear a case challenging the legality of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Chesapeake Bay cleanup plan.

The Farm Bureau originally filed a suit in U.S. District Court and an appeal to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals against the Chesapeake Bay Clean Water Blueprint. That's  the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's reference to the Environmental Protection Agency's bay guidelines to reduce water pollution, and subsequent watershed implementation plans (WIP) developed by each of the six watershed states and the District of Columbia to implement state-specific cleanup plans.

Pennsylvania is significantly behind in its goals, according to recent foundation reports.

Harry Campbell, executive director of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's Pennsylvania office, said he hoped the Supreme Court's decision would lead to positive momentum, with groups opposing the EPA's plan turning their attention to address the bay's issues.

"What's clear is we can't continue to invest in the bay's cleanup efforts at our current level and expect to reach our goals," Campbell said.

We hope the decision does indeed lead to positive momentum – and more, the action and investment needed to get on track with the bay cleanup plan. The health of the Chesapeake Bay is crucial and we can’t afford to ignore that fact a moment longer.

THUMBS UP: to the Leg Up Farmers Market, the niche grocery store at 3100 N. George St. slated to hold its grand opening on Wednesday, March 16. (Doors open at 7 a.m.)

The 18,700-square-foot store will sell locally sourced produce, dairy products, meat and other items. Those items will come from farms within a 100-mile radius of the store, said Brad Clark, chief operating officer of Leg Up Farmers Market.

All its fresh meat offerings will come from farms even closer to home and within a 30-mile radius. Some of the grass-fed beef will come from Forge Hill, an East Manchester Township farm just across the road from Leg Up Farm, the therapy center that focuses on children with special needs.

Numerous food producers will be on hand at the store on its opening day to educate customers about their products and to hand out samples. That includes honey from Gingrich Apiaries, Blind Spot Nutbutters and jerky from Triple R Farms.

The store will employ 78 workers, about 20 of whom will be full-time employees.

A market that provides fresh, local food for sale and creates purposeful jobs for Yorkers will no doubt be a great benefit to our community. We’ll be among the first in line on opening day.

THUMBS UP: to Susan Byrnes, president York County commissioner and the board’s newest member. Byrnes is at the forefront of an effort to educate York countians about the workings of their local government, and she has a great idea regarding how to go about that.

A representative from each of the 50 or so departments in county government is scheduled to give a presentation at the beginning of a commissioners' meeting on what they do.

"I felt that we have an opportunity to reach a lot of York countians," Byrnes said Susan Byrnes. "I think the citizens of York County deserve to know how hard our 2,600 employees are working."

We hope Yorkers will take advantage of this opportunity to see how their tax money is spent. We’ll follow it closely, as well.

When she campaigned, Byrnes really got out into the community. Her engagement and energy are such a welcome contrast to the national political rhetoric and vitriol of late.

When Byrnes campaigned, she promised to bring this kind of thinking to county government – educational and inclusive.

So far, that’s exactly what she has done.

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