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Issue Home December 17, 2002 Site Home

Rail Talks Remain Alive
Oakland Boro Taxes Increase
Forest City Taxes At 12.8 Mills
Court House Report
Gibson Barracks Report
Lenox Twp. Will Look At Roads
Local Hunters Die Of Natural Causes
Susky Boro Sells Building

Increasing rail service in Susquehanna County may not be on the immediate horizon, but it remains the goal of the county’s Rail Committee and encouraging things appear to be happening.

Last week, Arthur Feygelson, an account manager with the Canadian Pacific Railway, told the Rail Committee that the railroad would welcome the county’s business. And he said that because Canadian Pacific is not a large railroad line, it can offer the county better shipping rates.

Mr. Feygelson spoke optimistically but he told the Rail Committee and a roomful of guests at the luncheon meeting that county businesses and industries must generate enough outgoing freight before the railroad will consider pick-up stops in the county. He said it would take a commitment of 70 to 100 tons of freight on a regular basis.

Mr. Feygelson suggested a team approach to rail shipping. He said if the businesses and industries want rail service, they could combine their shipments at one siding in order to meet the required minimum shipping limits.

"You need a partnership to make the commitment for this to pay off," Mr. Feygelson said. "Volume is what it takes to get attractive rates. It all boils down to volume."

Mr. Feygelson also pointed out that while rail service is cheaper it is also slower. He said the county businessmen and industrialists need to understand that they may have three or four tractor loads of product tied up for a few days in one railroad car.

Concerning the return of rail passenger service to the county, Justin Taylor, director of the county’s Economic Development Department, said that early reports on the need were not good. However, the county needs to focus on regional passenger service and work closely with Wyoming, Wayne and Lackawanna counties.

"We can offer county residents another quality of life if we can get passenger service to New York and New Jersey or even to Scranton and Binghamton," Mr. Taylor said. He said the Lackawanna County Railroad Authority is projecting passenger service from Scranton to Hoboken in 2006.

Mr. Taylor also pointed out that tourism is one of the largest industries in the county and could enhance rail passenger service. He pointed to the proposed plans the Church of Latter Day Saints has for land it recently purchased in the SOLIDA Industrial Park in Oakland Township.

"They plan to build a monument honoring Joseph Smith," Mr. Taylor said. He said it will become a tourist attraction for more than five million Mormons who live in the United States.

Mr. Taylor said when a full-blown, in-depth study of rail passenger service is taken and the impact of tourism is factored in, the results will improve dramatically.

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Oakland Boro Taxes Increase

Oakland Boro Council met for their regular monthly meeting on December 12, with all members present.

A special meeting had been held on December 5 to work on the 2003 budget. Council president Ron Beavan said that a number of people had spent a lot of time on the budget; several options had been considered, including raising the current millage of 12.5 to 14.1 or 16 mills.

In discussion of salaries paid to boro employees, Mr. Beavan pointed out that secretary/treasurer Cindy Cordner and streets/water company employee Leo Fisk’s salaries were partially reimbursed (to the boro) by the water company; Mr. Fisk’s, 44% from the water company, and Mrs. Cordner’s, 50%. The proposed budget includes gradual increases for Mr. Fisk; for the first thirteen weeks of 2003, he will be paid $10.50 per hour for 32 hours, $10.50 per hour for 40 hours for the second thirteen weeks, and after 26 weeks $11.00 per hour for 40 hours per week. And, the boro and the water company will equally contribute to Mr. Fisk’s water fees for the year.

Some discussion had gone into auditors’ compensation; in keeping with what they had received last year, the proposed budget includes $450 total for the three auditors, or $150 each. Council member Bob VanFleet said that Ted Gordon, the former secretary/treasurer, had suggested that they receive $250 each. "It’s worth it for the time they put in," he said. Council member Cynthia Beavan pointed out that their pay had been $225 last year, because the time required had exceeded what had usually been expected, but, they used to get $110; $150 would still be an increase from the usual amount. A motion carried to keep the allocation at $450.

Other allocations were discussed, such as tax collection fees, maintenance costs for the boro building and garage, police salaries, insurance, fire protection, equipment (truck) maintenance costs, and street light costs; most of these projected costs are based on current rates, and some, such as fire protection and insurance are fixed and cannot be reduced.

Allocations for street improvements were discussed. Mr. Beavan noted that one planned project, for Second Ave., would involve considerable costs in materials alone.

During discussion about the boro’s contributions to local services, a representative of the Susquehanna Depot Area Historical Society addressed council (at council’s invitation). He relayed that the society had begun fifteen years ago, by people from communities throughout the area. Meetings had at first been held at the Starrucca House in Susquehanna, but no display space had been available. Meetings were then held at the Lanesboro community building, with limited display space available. The society then relocated back to the Starrucca House, with space available for displays, but by this time the society had accumulated considerable items, some of which "disappeared" while on display. The society is now located in the Shops Plaza, but has to pay rent and utility costs. In their efforts to raise funds, the society sponsors annual events, such as bake sales, yard sales and a barbecue, but "we’re always looking for funds to keep our heads above water. Our whole purpose is to preserve our history for future generations." The society, he said, receives a number of inquiries from people from this area as well as far away, researching their family history. "We’re there for anyone who wants to avail themselves of our records." The museum is open every Sunday between Memorial Day and Labor Day, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., but members may be contacted at phone numbers posted on the museum door to accommodate those who wish to visit at other times. And, monthly meetings are held regularly, with the exception of December and January. The society had been asked to send a representative to address council to gather more information about the services they provide. It had been thought that the society’s original request had been for financial contributions for a two-year period, although the boro has been making a contribution for about five years. It was agreed to request that the society make a presentation to council on a yearly basis, in the fall, before work on the budget for the following year begins. Council member Cynthia Beavan noted that new council members might be in need of information to make an informed decision about donations.

In further discussion, it was noted that the Susquehanna branch library has contacted neighboring municipalities to request an increase in donations, or to consider contributing if they were not currently doing so. It was not known if these efforts will result in increased donations. A motion carried to increase the library’s donation by $100, to $430 per year, and to continue the yearly donation of $300 to the historical society.

Discussing the boro park, it was noted that not much could be changed as far as expected utility costs, but some equipment was in need of repair and/or replacement. There have been some incidents of vandalism; Mr. VanFleet suggested that if council were to allocate funds to improve the park, steps would need to be taken to ensure that vandalism is curbed. Council member Chad Crawford suggested that set hours could be posted. Mr. VanFleet agreed; if kids were in the park after hours, it would help in keeping them out at night when these incidents seem to occur.

In discussion about codes, Mr. Beavan said that he had spoken with the boro’s CEO, who had expressed concern; he must be kept aware of any interaction between codes violators and council members or boro police; it is imperative that the CEO be aware of any agreements that were reached in the event that cases require legal action. If a matter were to go to court, it could impact the outcome if he were unaware of any arrangements that had been made by a representative of the boro prior to a court hearing. In such instances, Mr. Beavan said, the case could be "thrown out of court" on a technicality if all information was not available to the CEO prior to a court hearing. It was the boro’s responsibility to ensure that everything is "lined up from the beginning to the end." He added that he is very confident with the CEO’s handling of such matters. There are "plenty" of places in need of enforcement, he said; people have been addressing these situation in most cases. But, in some cases there have been problems; he cited one case where the property owner has refused to apply for a building permit for an addition in spite of being notified by the boro that it is required. The owner claimed to have obtained a permit from Montrose, although it was noted that Montrose does not issue building permits for other municipalities. And, the property owner claimed that correspondence received from Oakland’s CEO did not include contact information. Mr. Beavan stated that all correspondence from the boro included a cover letter, listing the necessary information, such as the boro office address, phone numbers and fax numbers.

Renovations are in progress at the old church building on Westfall Ave., and the owner of a garage is in the process of taking it down. "There is cooperation," Mr. Beavan was pleased to report.

Council members reviewed a list of current violations; letters have been sent to several property owners apprising them of violations; Mr. Beavan said that, if violations were to be addressed by the responsible parties there would be no further action, but legal action would be taken in cases of noncompliance.

When the time came to vote on the proposed budget, Mr. Beavan noted, "I realize that if we’re going to improve this community, we’re going to have to take steps to do it. We’ve been commonly referred to as a ‘do nothing’ council. I realize that there are a lot of retirees in the boro on fixed incomes." But, he noted that increasing the millage would affect all residents, including members of council; the proposed increase to 16 mills would be an increase of $83 per year for his property. "We’d all be paying it," he said.

A motion carried to approve the proposed budget at an increase to 14.1 mills. A special meeting has been scheduled to adopt the budget, on Saturday, December 28, at 4 p.m.

At a prior meeting, a bid had been accepted for some electrical work at the boro building, mainly installing lighted exit signs with battery backup; the contractor has been unable to do the installation due to a backlog of work. A motion carried to contact the second bidder to proceed with the work.

Mr. Beavan reported that he has received several inquiries as to the status of part-time police officer Roger May; a letter had been sent to Mr. May last spring informing him that the boro has terminated his service and will no longer pay any of his expenses involved with update training. Mr. Agler reported that he had been approached by a boro resident interested in pursuing training to become a police officer; Mr. VanFleet agreed to furnish him with the necessary information.

Council member Bob VanFleet reported that he had contacted the county animal control officer in response to a complaint about a neglected dog on State St.; Mr. VanFleet said that he would follow up with the dog warden, as the dog has not been seen in the area recently.

Roadmaster Jack Agler reported that work on installing an ice skating area at the boro park has been delayed due to recent winter storms and problems with the water company, but that the work will be completed when the weather allows. Continuing discussion on the ice storm, Mr. Fisk, he said, had approached him prior to the storm about salting some of the higher elevations in the boro before the storm hit, which, he said had been a good idea. Although there were some complaints about slippery roads, Mr. Agler said that Mr. Fisk had done the best he could under the circumstances. And, Mr. Agler apologized for being unable to clear the sidewalk on the bridge after the recent storms; he had been unable to do it.

Council reviewed information from the committee working on designating the area as a scenic byway; a survey needs to be completed, for submission to PENNDOT, outlining the boro’s attractions, such as unique services and resources.

Copies of a letter sent to the Public Utilities Commission by former secretary/treasurer Ted Gordon were reviewed; Mr. Gordon raised some concerns about the proposal received from the PA American Water Co. to purchase the boro’s water system, among them questions regarding anticipated usage fees if the sale were to come to fruition.

A motion carried to purchase an ad in the Susquehanna Sesquicentennial memorabilia book, on the contingency that it is legal for council to do so. Mrs. Cordner will obtain information before proceeding.

No action was taken on a request for a donation regarding efforts to restore a Civil War monument in Montrose.

Information received by council from the county Housing and Redevelopment Authority will be made available to residents Marilyn Hand and Jane Mazikewich, regarding grant funding, as they have both been working on obtaining grants for street/sidewalk improvements to the boro.

Council reviewed a report from the county Department of Economic Development, regarding ongoing issues at the SOLIDA industrial park.

Mr. VanFleet asked about a request to put up "no parking here to corner" signs at an intersection where there is a bus stop, in response to complaints he had received about trucks parking in that area. No action was taken, as it is a state road.

Mrs. Beavan asked about repairs to the furnace at the boro building, which happened following power surges. Mayor Towner said that the control that had needed to be replaced was well past its expected life, as it was the original control. Mrs. Beavan replied that she was curious as to whether its replacement was a result of the power surge, as at one time the electric company would have been liable for replacement costs.

No action was taken regarding a request from Janet Smith, who collects usage fees for the water company, to increase her salary; she had requested half of all late fees collected, or $3.60 per (late) bill. It was agreed that there should be no change in her collection hours, although it was noted that some residents disregard scheduled collection times, and show up at Mrs. Smith’s home at "all hours." And, no action was taken on Mrs. Smith’s request to provide a collection box; it was agreed that the box would be for Mrs. Smith’s convenience, and should be provided by her if there was a need for it. There was a consensus that, if a box were to be provided, it should be stipulated that cash should not be left in the box.

In further discussion, it was noted that in April there will be a substantial payment due to the USDA, for an outstanding loan for improvements to the boro’s water system. A motion carried to increase quarterly fees from $72 to $80, effective after the first of the year; this action was a result of concern that, after payment is made, the water company’s funds will be seriously depleted. It was noted that there has been no increase in five years. Mrs. Beavan predicted that fees will need to be raised again in the near future, to allow for any repairs or equipment replacement, or if meters need to be installed.

The meeting adjourned to an executive session, to discuss a personnel issue.

The next regular meeting will be on Thursday, January 9, 7:00 p.m. in the boro building.

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Forest City Taxes At 12.8 Mills

As expected, the Forest City Borough Council passed the 2003 municipal budget that provides for a tax increase of 1.5 mills, moving the rate from the present 11.3 mills to 12.8 mills.

The $651,000 spending plan was approved by a 6-1 vote with Councilwoman Mary Twilley casting the negative vote. Mrs. Twilley explained hers was a protest vote against the sizable increase in the police budget.

In 2003, the borough will spend about $200,000 for police protection, an increase of about $50,000 over the current year. The most noticeable increases are in health insurance and a new retirement program.

Mrs. Twilley suggested that the borough look into alternative health insurance plans because of the increase in Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Council President Mary Cicco said plans including HMO’s will be looked at and may replace the present BC/BS plan.

But Councilman Paul J. Amadio said the new police contract provides the two full-time officers with BC/BS. He said the officers will not accept anything else.

"I asked them (the two full time officers) if they would contribute toward their health insurance and they refused," Mr. Amadio said. "That shows you the concern they have for the residents of the borough."

"I will vote for this budget," Mr. Amadio continued, "because as finance chairman, I know it has already been trimmed to the bone. But I want it known that the tax increase is the direct result of the new police contract." He pointed out that senior citizens are only getting a 1.4 percent increase in their Social Security benefits in 2003, while the full time police will get 2.75 percent next year, year one of their new three-year contract, and 3 percent in years two and three.

Mr. Amadio and Mrs. Twilley voted against the police contract. Council members Mary Cicco, Jim Lowry, Ruth Fitzsimmons, Alan Gordon, and newcomer Bernard Scalzo supported it. Mr. Scalzo was appointed to replace his father who passed away a couple of weeks ago.

After the meeting, Mr. Amadio said that in 2003, the borough will pay more than $12,000 a year for Police Chief Paul Lukus’ health insurance and about $6,000 for Assistant Chief Joseph Nolan.

In another matter, council agreed to advertise for sale a strip of borough-owned land off Railroad Street after Michael Newak submitted a letter of interest in acquiring the property.

Mayor Frank Brager said Mr. Newak plans to construct a 60x120-foot building on land he owns adjacent to the strip. He said it will be the site of Mr. Newak’s used car lot. The mayor also said the Newak family is considering the construction of a 10-unit motel in the Greater Forest City Industrial Park of Route 247. If the borough approves it, the building could qualify for 10 years of free real estate taxes.

Borough Solicitor Robert Fields advised the council that a federal civil rights lawsuit filed against the borough was decided in favor of the borough. He said the court awarded the borough legal costs in the amount of $3,300.

"The borough has been offered an immediate settlement of $2,000 in cash," Mr. Fields said. He recommended that the borough accept the offer rather than spend more money on legal fees. Council concurred and passed a motion authorizing Mr. Fields to proceed with the settlement.

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Court House Report


Timothy James Major, 21, Gibson Township, and Erica Jo Seman, 19, Thompson Township.

Shawn Karl Hadden, 26, Siler City, NC and Angela Renee Koziol, 22, Siler City, NC.


Lance M. Benedict, Sheriff, to Chase Mortgage Company-West in Hop Bottom Borough for $1,214.49.

Frances Romeo, Michele Romeo Moro aka Michele Moro and James Moro, and Daniel Romeo to Michele Romeo Moro and James Moro in Clifford Township for $1.

Lena Frank and Sergio Righetti and Ylanda Righetti to Suzanne K. St Pierre in Auburn Township for $20,900.

Irene McCarthy, Administratrix of the Estate of Steven Andrew Kovitch aka Steven Dovitch to Gerald C. Welsted and Darcie L. Welsted in Hallstead Borough for $89,000.

Conseco Finance Consumer Discount Company fka Green Tree Consumer Discount Company to Donna Fekette and Thomas J. Lopatofsky, Jr. in Jackson Township for $62,500.

David J. Fredendall and Cindy Fredendall aka Cindy L. Fredendall to Edward Pardo and Patricia E. Pardo in Forest Lake Township for $100,000.

Jeffrey Haberle dba Neway Homes to Abrah Haberle and Carole Diane Haberle in Franklin Township for $1.

Olympic Lake Estates to Olympic Lake Estates, LLC in Apolacon Township for $1.

Gerald Purtell and Karen Purtell to Scott E. White and Holly J. White in Apolacon Township for $4,500.

PENNDOT to Charles & Elizabeth Mills in Dimock Township for highway occupancy permit.

Matthew Kruvczuk to Dennis J. Canfield in Gibson Township for $73,000.

Donald E. Blaisure and Joyce M. Blaisure to Frank F. Mittmann and Anne L. Mittmann in Bridgwater Township for $10,000.

Lance M. Benedict, Sheriff, to Federal National Mortgage Association in Springville Township for $1,134.64.

Kevin A. Tompkins and Joanne W. Tompkins to Brenda Steingraber in Bridgewater Township for $55,000.

Andrew Suponcic and Helen Suponcic to Andrew Suponcic, Jr., Eileen Debevec and Linda Griguts in Forest City Borough for $1.

Robert M. Sawyer and Donna M. Geer to Frank S. Prybeck and Donna J. Prybeck in Harmony Township for $158,000.

Lance M. Benedict, Sheriff, to Summit Financial Corporation in Auburn Township for $4,972.61.

Joseph A. Iannelli, Jr. and Lottie Iannelli, by her Attorney-in-Fact, Joseph A. Iannelli, to Joseph A. Iannelli, Jr. Custodian for Jeramie Alioa, in Middletown Township for $1 (two parcels).

William L. Evans, Jr. by his appointed Guardian Jill L. deGonzague and D. Elouise Evans to Lyle D. Very, William L. Evans III and Jill L. deGonzague in Montrose Borough for $1 (transfer tax paid on 1/3 of the fair market value of $65,481).

Stephen A. Wikoski and Shirley V. Wikoski to Raymond C. Davis and Alice M. Davis in Springville and Auburn Townships for $155,000.

Estelle Gerson to Timeshare Transfer Company in Herrick Township for $200.

Jill Mastroianni, nbm Jill Kie and Ricky K. Kie to Kevin D. Mack and Anna M. Mack in New Milford Township for $93,000.

Kenneth W. Gamaer, Administrator DBNCTA of the estate of Clara E. Gamaer and Lynn A. Gamaer to Thomas J. Mirra and Cynthia Canfield-Mirra in New Milford Township for $27,750.

Thomas J. Mirra and Cynthia Canfield-Mirra to Thomas J. Mirra and Cynthia Canfield-Mirra in New Milford Township for no consideration.

Graydon L. Frazier and Durwood P. Frazier as Co-Executors of the estate of Hattie A. Frazier to Graydon L. Frazier in Forest Lake Township for $1.

Graydon L. Frazier and Lucille Frazier to Michael J. Tokash and Kathryn Tokash in Forest Lake Township for $1.

Lance M. Benedict, Sheriff, to Peoples National Bank in Oakland Township for $2,179.94.

Karen Van De Griek and Thomas Van De Griek to Valerie A. Hausworth in Jackson Township for $99,900.

Charles P. Wagner, Charles P. Wagner, Jr. and Terry D. Wagner to Robert Mancuso and Thelma J. Mancuso in Ararat Township for $45,000.

M. Lee Huntsberger and Elaine C. Huntsberger to Shane L. Hunter and Rebecca Hunter in Franklin Township for $27,300.

Graydon L. Frazier and Lucille Frazier to Michael J. Tokash and Kathryn Tokash in Forest Lake Township for $29,000.

Gary Allen Levy and Mary Levy and James Andrew Levy and Karen Levy to Philip J. Pass, Jr. and Lauri Pass in Ararat Township for $43,500.

Joseph M. Perillo to Patrick J. Clark & Barbara H. Clark in Jackson and Ararat Townships for $1.

Robert Lackenby and Julia Lackenby to Julia Lackenby in Clifford Township for $1.

James Q. Wostbrock and Teresa Wostbrock to Luis G. Lima, Jr. in Montrose Borough for $74,000.

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Gibson Barracks Report


James Earling Ruffin, Sr., 42, Susquehanna, was found deceased inside his residence on December 9 at 1:37 p.m. on Township Route 643, Jackson Township. The cause of death was a single gunshot wound to the head. Manner of death is currently under investigation.


Barbara Skeen, Greenfield Township, was traveling north on State Route 247, Clifford Township, on December 4, and struck Joseph N. Connor, Carbondale, who was traveling south. No additional information was available.


Someone in an older S-10 Blazer, possibly light blue in color with an inoperative right front headlight, smashed the front door to gain entry to Lockhart's Deli and Sunoco, State Route 29, Montrose, on December 8 at 11:30 p.m. Cigarettes were stolen. Anyone with information about this incident may contact the barracks at 570-465-3154.


Someone gained entry between November 13-22 into a shed at the James Krier residence at Daly Rd., half a mile south of State Route 3029, Jessup Township. Taken from the shed were a 2000 Yamaha Big Bear 3400, green ATV, and a 1997 Honda Foreman 400, red ATV. Anyone with information is asked to contact the PA State Police at Gibson at 570-465-3154.


Between November 17, 2001 and November 17, 2002, someone broke into Maryann Krushnowski's trailer at State Route 3001, Auburn Township. Taken were a kerosene heater, sofa, refrigerator and clothing. Anyone with information is asked to contact the PA State Police at 570-465-3154.


Rolland B. Loomis, 78, Montrose, was turning left from State Route 706 into the Montrose Auto Parts Store parking lot, Bridgewater Township, and crossed the west bound lane into the path of Tammy M. Hill, 30, New Milford, and a collision was unavoidable. No injuries occurred in this December 6 incident at 8:00 a.m.


Edward C. Nolan, 65, New Milford, was traveling north on State Route 11, Great Bend Township. The roadway was only wet, but his vehicle drifted into the center lane which was slush covered. His 1996 Mercury veered out of control, spun counter-clockwise and came to rest against a utility pole. The incident occurred on December 6 at 9:00 a.m.


A 1996 Pontiac Sunfire was parked on State Route 11, in front of Rosa's Craft Shop, Hallstead Borough. It was struck by a dark blue Buick Regal, with possibly a New York registration. After the collision, the unknown driver continued south on State Route 11. Anyone with information on this December 5 incident at 1:00 p.m. may contact the police at 570-465-3154.


A 1993 Honda driven by Kwok Fai Fok, College Point, NY, and a 1998 Volkswagen, driven by Sarah Evwer, Westfield, NJ, were traveling northbound on Interstate 81 on December 1 at 2:45 p.m. Fok slowed for traffic ahead and Evwer lightly bumped the rear of Fok's vehicle. Passenger Siv Ping Fok was transported to Barnes Kasson Hospital with complaint of neck pain.


Jennifer Armondi, 18, Great Bend, was traveling north on State Route 11, Great Bend Township, when she lost control of her 1997 Pontiac and traveled into a drainage ditch. No injury occurred in this December 5 accident.


Murad M. Hussein, 22, Rochester, NY, lost control of his 2003 Suzuki SUV on snow covered Interstate 81, Lenox exit on December 5. His vehicle spun around three times, coming to rest on the roadway. Andrzej Wardach, 40, Kitchener, ONT., driving a Volvo tractor trailer, was traveling south and collided with the SUV tearing the SUV open on the rear driver's side. This caused the four passengers of the SUV, Ahmed Ahmed, 21; Mohamed S. Mohsen, 23; Walid Shaibi, 22; all of Rochester, and Nasser F. Moosa, 26, no address given, to spill out onto the highway. All were taken to CMC in critical condition. An investigation continues.


Someone stole a 1992 Chevy 1500 ext. cab pick up truck belonging to Steven M. Deriancho, Montrose, from his residence on State Route 267, Forest Lake Township, between 11:30 p.m. on December 4 and 7:15 a.m. the next morning. The vehicle was black and had a Fisher plow mount attached to it. It also has chrome step rails and chrome stone guards. Anyone with information is asked to contact the PA State Police.


Someone took a snow blower and a chainsaw from a garage at Township Route 315, Auburn Township, belonging to Normand Bennett, Meshoppen. The incident occurred between November 24 at 8:00 a.m. and December 4 at 9:00 a.m. Anyone with information is asked to contact the PA State Police at 570-465-3154.


On December 4 at 8:57 p.m., someone pumped 11.32 gallons of unleaded fuel into a big light blue vehicle and failed to pay the $16.52 at the Pump & Pantry, New Milford Borough.


Paul O. Sherman, Meshoppen, was driving a truck tractor and flat bed trailer west on State Route 374, Lenox Township, when a pallet of stone fell off his truck. Stone then impacted an oncoming vehicle driven by Betsy Walters, Clarks Summit. A third vehicle driven by Shannon Lee Vanvleck, Nicholson, was driving behind the truck and was also struck by falling stone. Walters suffered moderate injuries, and was treated at CMC, Scranton. Sherman was charged with failing to secure loads in vehicles in this November 29 incident.


Amanda Marie Smith, Liverpool, NY, was not injured when she lost control of her vehicle on Interstate Route 81, Lenox Township, and impacted with a stone ledge along the highway. The incident occurred on December 3 at 9:53 a.m.


Paul Williams, Earlville, NY, struck a deer on Interstate 81, Harford Township, on December 2 at 11:35 am. The deer ran into his lane of travel. No injuries were noted.

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Lenox Twp. Will Look At Roads

The Lenox Township Municipal meeting on December 2 was unremarkable, and very short. Township supervisors Jim Taylor, Fred Benson, and Don Zablotsky were present. Secretary/Treasurer Sharon Depew read the minutes from the last meeting after sharing the treasurer's report which revealed there appears to be an adequate amount of money in all accounts to handle future projects.

Depew noted that the paperwork and money that will be sent to Hop Bottom to cover culvert work partially completed in Lenox Township is still in progress. When questioned about any new developments on the Route #92 Scenic By-Way that was under discussion a few months back, Zablotsky noted that it appeared some of the towns up the line in New York may not have gone along with the idea.

The supervisors were preparing for snow situations regarding roadwork in the township. The meeting was short as the snow had begun to fall very quickly outside the municipal building and the roads were already beginning to get a slippery coating. There were no subdivisions on the table at this meeting.

It was noted, however, that in order to be in compliance with 911 regulations in the County, four township roads will have to be given official names. The supervisors determined this matter will have to be reviewed with the PENNDOT representative for the township, Randy Decker.

The most important matter that came before the supervisors that evening, before they headed out to address the slippery roads, was the annual reorganization meeting. It was set for the first Monday, January 6, 2003 at 7:00 p.m.

The Lenox Township supervisors meet in the municipal building on Route #92 at 7:30 p.m. The public is invited.

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Local Hunters Die Of Natural Causes

Two hunters were found dead of natural causes in unrelated incidents. George Bishop, 67, of Kingsley, was found dead in the woods on December 2. He died of a heart attack while hunting in Brooklyn Township.

Wayne Sarver, 58, from Lansdale, PA suffered a heart attack in a hunting camp in Liberty Township, on November 30, and was pronounced dead at Endless Mountains Health Care System.

A hunting accident occurred on December 2, in Ararat Township. Peter Wilder, 42, Powder Springs, GA, suffered a self-inflicted wound to the right leg. The incident occurred approximately 1:00 p.m. as he was climbing into a tree stand with a loaded rifle. Wilder dropped the rifle, which then discharged. He was taken to Marion Community Hospital, Carbondale, by private vehicle for treatment of his wound which was not life-threatening.

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Susky Boro Sells Building

Susquehanna Boro Council’s December 12 meeting got off to a late start, due to lack of a quorum; council members Pat Frederick and Todd Glover were absent, and Ron Whitehead and Tom Kelly arrived late from work.

When the meeting convened at 7:45, two bids received for the old boro building on Exchange St. were opened; high bid, $5,126.00, was awarded to John Sholtiss. A motion carried to accept.

Mayor Kelly relayed an open invitation for all to attend the "grand opening" of the Habitat for Humanity house on West Main St., set for December 14. And, she reported that negotiations are still underway for a cell phone tower in the boro; she promised to keep council posted of any updates.

The Zoning Board tentatively scheduled a meeting for December 16.

Public comment was limited to one question, from Mr. Sholtiss; he asked if the boro has its own website (it does not), and suggested that this might be a good project for council’s two junior members to work on. Mayor Kelly agreed that it was a good idea, and could go hand in hand with efforts to promote tourism in the area.

The meeting adjourned to an executive session, to discuss a legal issue.

When the meeting reconvened, a motion carried to deny a request for a twelve-month extension for a demolition order for a burned structure on Erie Ave. There was also a brief discussion regarding zoning laws, and whether they apply to trailers; the matter will be discussed further at the next zoning board meeting.

The next meeting will be on Wednesday, December 18, 7:00 p.m. in the boro building.

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