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Three of the visitors in the audience at the regular monthly meeting of the Montrose Borough Council on June 2 are members of the Montrose Fire Department. They were there to provide Council members with very valid reasons as to why the borough should adopt the Countys readdressing plan. County EMA head Dawn Watson, along with Kevin were there to answer any questions that Council all of whom were present except for Elmer Taylor may have about how the standard readdressing plan would work should the borough choose to adopt it.
Unlike townships, where significant renaming of roads could be required if they adopt a readdressing ordinance, boroughs like Montrose would generally get to keep its street names. An exception would be where street names are similar sounding, or when one street name runs into another and which might cause confusion on the part of first responders. In these examples, its preferred that one of the streets be renamed.
What would occur for most of Montrose streets, however, is renumbering of houses, from north to south, and west to east. Essentially, everyone one in town would be assigned a new residence number. The system assigns numbers every 5.28 feet, so numbers on houses in a row would not be consecutive ones. It also addresses multiple-dwelling structures meaning that everyone will have a unique, identified number for their home or business and accommodates streets that curve their way southward or eastward.
One of the firefighters spoke up about the time the standardized system will save the Minutemen in responding to calls. "It will be critical to our time, on how we lay our hoses." Another firefighter added that it will help the police department, with new officers learning the borough all that more quickly. Moreover, those who use post office boxes sometimes dont even know their house number. While they can still keep their PO box, they will have to know their number. For emergency services overall, the system is a plus.
As an example, one related how the fire department does a lot of tours for elementary school students. "We ask them where they live, and they give us an RR number. Thats not where they live; thats their address. This will help them learn where they live so that when they have to give an address and get emergency services, theyll be able to do it."
Watson said that she hoped that readdressing would be done County-wide by the end of 2005. "Wed do it gradually, by postal zone. Residents will be notified of their old address and their new one, and will have a year to make a conversion to their new address for mailing, checks, letterheads, and other purposes." She added that the County is not supporting readdressing to be difficult; rather, "its a life and safety issue."
Council president Craig Reimel noted that, since readdressing would affect a lot of people, Council would look for their input during a hearing that will be part of its next regular monthly meeting on July 5. In the meantime, Watson will forward to Council a copy of a sample ordinance similar to those other municipalities in the County have adopted.
This next Council is expected to include another hearing that of looking into a new cable contract agreement. Todd Martin, a representative from New Channels, dropped in on the meeting after attending a similar one in the County, to see if Council had any questions about his organizations proposed agreement. Since most Council members hadnt yet reviewed it, they didnt. Martin noted that a good deal of the agreement was "pulled down" from federal law, such as franchise fees, free service access for things like the Weather Channel at the municipal building. Public libraries would get free cable and high-speed Internet access. Borough solicitor Jason Legg cautioned Council to ensure that whatever cable provider is chosen, that it provide adequate documentation to the borough as to the number of subscribers and other information on which its franchise fee to the borough is based.
With spring having arrived if just in name only Council paid attention to the various clean-ups that accompany the end of winter. Street foreman Ken DiPhillips reported that he finished sweeping the streets and worked on and in the playground, and expected to next paint crosswalks and correct drainage problems.
The new streetlight is up by the park and members were pleased to report that it casts a lot of light over the area. Council authorized the purchase of two sets of basketball nets for the park, as well as the purchase of a new flagpole. The one donated by the Lions Club has been broken, and the new one will be installed closer to Jackson Street, where lights and police on patrol are nearby.
The official opening of the park is scheduled for June 23, at 11 a.m., with children anxious to use the new park equipment. Borough secretary Annette Rogers will be sending out letters of invitation to people who donated money for the equipment, requesting their presence at this "official" beginning of summer for the kids.
Council also authorized the purchase of hot patch to better repair the streets torn up by endless snow plowing.
Rogers also reported that American Water would be replacing lawns on lower South Main Street from Wilson to the bottom of the hill. And, with all the rain, the grass is surely growing in some places, well above ten inches, noted Reimel. He gently noted that residents whose lawns are almost up to their knees would hopefully get to their lawn mowers soon.
In other business, Council agreed to implement a 60-day trial period for a four-way stop at the intersection of Mill and High Streets, following a few very close calls. Reimel noted that, in addition, the Pro Fitness Center will be altering its parking area, and will take up the fire companys offer to use the area across the street for customer parking. "They will gravel it and cut the brush; they are very interested in being good neighbors."
New police officer John Walker will also get a pay raise from $9 an hour to $10. "Ive gotten good feedback on John from all three cops," said Mayor Tom LaMont. "Hes worked out fantastically for us."
And Walker and other Montrose officers may have a new police car, as well. The current vehicle is starting to "nickel and dime" the borough with repairs. LaMont said he checked into the state piggyback program and "were looking at around $25,000 to replace" the current vehicle. He thought it might be time to look into a Chevy Impala, which both the state police and the county sheriff use. "We should start looking in the next few months certainly the next year before the transmission goes," added LaMont. Council asked if he could get some numbers together for the next meeting, and he will.
Other news of local note: Rogers reported that The Pleasure Zone and the House of Hot Wax circulars of which were passed around the borough last month were fictitious. A late April Fools joke?
The next regular meeting of the Montrose Borough Council is scheduled for 7 p.m. on July 7, at the Borough Building.
Veteran Forest City Councilman Jim Lowry is the new council president following the sudden and surprising resignation of Mary Cicco, who held the post for the past eight years.
In a brief letter to council, Cicco said "health reasons have made it necessary for me to resign my position effective June 1." Councilman Paul J. Amadio made a motion to accept the resignation with regret and to send Cicco a letter of gratitude for her service to the community. Councilman Alan Gordon extended the motion to include the presentation of a plaque to Cicco.
Gordons motion to name Lowry as president was approved unanimously by council. Lowry had previously served as vice president and chairman of the street committee. No word on who, if anyone, he will name to replace him as head of that committee.
Gordon followed his motion to name Lowry as council president, with a surprise motion naming Bernie Scalzo Jr. as vice president. Scalzo is in his first year on the governing body having been appointed to replace his father who passed away late last year.
Scalzo changed his vote on a critical issue regarding the sale of a parcel of borough-owned land off Railroad Street. A month ago, he voted against the sale. At this meeting, his yes vote approved the motion to put the land on the block by a 4-2 margin.
In another matter, council voted unanimously in favor of a motion that the borough develop a plan to eliminate a sewage problem in a parcel of land known as Yuca Flats. The motion came on the heels of a threat from Scott Linde to take legal action against the borough if council did not agree to begin work on the plan. Linde is affiliated with a partnership that plans to construct a park in Yuca Flats if and when the borough can stop raw sewage from seeping into the site.
Amadio made the motion after he was assured by Linde that no legal action would be started if the borough did not begin work on the plan in 60 days. Amadio said the cost of the project could be extremely expensive and he would want some assurance from the state that they would help the borough finance the project.
"We are a borough with 1900 people," Amadio said, "and we cannot expect to saddle these 1900 people with a multi-million-dollar sewer project. We need financial help from some source before we can commit to a project of this magnitude."
"We want to resolve it (the problem)," said Linde, "and we want to work with the borough. If we can get an agreement, we would be willing to back off and not start legal action for an additional 60 days."
Linde said the problem is the boroughs surface drainage is emptying into the sewer lines causing overflowing of catch basins in the vicinity of Yuca Flats. As a result, he said, raw sewage has been spilling into land in Yuca Flats.
"This is a serious problem," Linde said. "There is a very bad odor and there is the potential for hepatitis. We want to work with you, but we want to get going."
Lowry urged council to consider buying another new police car. He said the Ford patrol car is in bad repair and has been costing the borough more money than the vehicle is worth.
Amadio pointed out that the borough is still paying on the new police car purchased two years ago and is also making monthly payments on the new furnace installed in the borough building.
"As chairman of finance, " Amadio said, "I can tell you that we simply cannot afford to spend $20,000 for a new patrol car." Amadio suggested the borough purchase a used car for driving to court and the county jail.
"We have one square mile of space and about eight miles of road in it," Amadio said. "Why do we need two patrol cars? If the officers would patrol like they are supposed to, one patrol car would be sufficient."
Amadio also suggested that the borough street department do something about a water problem in the 900 block of Delaware Street near the personal care home. Lowry said he would look into it.
E. L. Keenan, RD2, Uniondale, was parked at the Clifford Hotel, Clifford Township, on May 20 and someone backed up into his vehicle, then left the scene without providing information.
TRAFFIC COLLISION, HIT & RUN
On May 7, Allan C. Potter, Thompson, was traveling south on Church St., Hallstead Borough, in a 1988 Chevy Blazer, when he sideswiped a parked 1995 Ford Ranger. He was later charged with failure to stay in Roadways Laned for Traffic, Careless Driving, Accidents Involving Damage to Unattended Property and failure to make Immediate Notice of Accident to Police Dept., according to the police report.
Anthony Smith, Brackney, was traveling along State Route 4001, Silver Lake Township, on April 24 when his Landrover caught fire. The cause of the fire was undetermined. Smith was not injured.
On May 16 at 7:58 a.m., Fred Perry, Riverside, RI, failed to yield the right-of-way to Robert Pencek, Friendsville, at the intersection of State Routes 92 and 106, Lenox Township. Pencek was treated at the scene for minor injury.
On May 19 between 10:00 and 11:00 a.m. someone entered the home of Donna Coleman, 53, State Route 247, Clifford Township, and stole money from a dresser drawer. Anyone with information is asked to contact the PA State Police at 570-465-3154 and refer to R5-502558.
Phyllis Slocum, Hop Bottom Borough, was traveling north on State Route 167, Hop Bottom Borough, on May 30 at 1:40 p.m.. Her 1996 Mercury experienced mechanical problems resulting in the vehicle striking a parked car located along the berm. Slocum was not injured.
MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT
K. Adriance, Montrose, in a 1995 GMC rear-ended a 2001 GMC truck belonging to T. Cortright, Springville, on State Route 706, Bridgewater Township on May 29 at 3:02p.m. No injuries occurred.
No one was hurt when Joseph King, RR1, Susquehanna, fell asleep, drifted off of State Route 1012, New Milford Township, and hit a split rail fence on May 19 at 3:50 p.m.
David M. Dean, 44, Montrose, was arrested and arraigned at District Court in Montrose on May 21 and subsequently released on $15,000 bail after an investigation of stolen computers and monitors from Donald Dean & Sons, State Route 706, Montrose. The incident occurred between April 18-21.
Between September 2002 and March 2003, Brian Coughlin, Johnson City, NY, entered a cottage on Forest Lake belonging to Joseph R. Fiori and James Fiori, Endwell, NY, and removed fishing poles and a tackle box. Coughlin returned the fishing poles to the victims.
Someone removed four wheels and tires from a 2003 Ford Ranger that was parked at Fucillo Ford, State Route 11, Great Bend Township, between May 27 at 8:00 p.m. and 8:45 the next morning.
Between May 25 at 9:00 p.m. and 2:30 the next morning, someone scratched a 1995 Pontiac car on the passenger side while parked at the Hill Top Bar parking lot, Susquehanna Borough. Anyone with information is asked to contact the PA State Police at 465-3154.
Ronald R. Schafer, Erie, PA, was traveling north on Interstate 81 in the left hand lane of travel. Schafer then fell asleep behind the wheel resulting in his 2001 Dodge pick-up truck traveling approximately 300 feet in the grass median. It then rolled over and came to rest on its roof in Trowbridge Creek, Great Bend Township, which runs under the interstate. Schafer sustained only moderate injuries in this May 10 accident at 1:00 a.m.
Michael Tyler Archer, 22, Chicago, IL, and Aimee Lynette Neild, 21, Silver Lake Township.
Derrick William Jayne, 35, Auburn Township, and Mary Ann K. Lutton, 32, Auburn Township.
Patrick Stuart Vankirk, 25, Huevelton, NY, and Theresa Mary Fullerton, 26, Potsdam, NY.
Gary Jacob Fugel, 40, Rush Township, and Jeneane Ann Williams, 31, Rush Township.
Guy E. Vandermark to Jack L. McKeeby in Dimock Township for bluestone mining operation.
Sinon Timothy Gulley to Sinon Timothy Gulley in Oakland Borough for $1.
Chris Mowry and Tammi Mowry and R. Hewitt Sutton and Sharon L. Sutton to James J. Cummings in Dimock Township for $84,390.
James Lexinsky to Susan Kinney to Lathrop Township for $10,400.
James M. Karhnak, Jr. & Marcia G. Karhnak to Donna M. Fekette & Thomas J. Lapotofsky, Jr. in Lathrop Township for $225,000.
James Swetter and Bonnie Noll to Richard DeMaria and Rita DeMaria in Clifford Township for $18,900.
James F. Swetter and Patricia Swetter to Richard DeMaria and Rita DeMaria in Clifford Township for $48,600.
Neil Michael Hall and Robin Jean Corey nbm Robin C. Hall to Amy Tinklepaugh in Oakland Township for $53,000.
Andrew R. Bednarz, Jr., to James M. Walka in Harford Township for $23,500.
Richard T. Kamansky and Joan M. Kamansky to Robert E. Kamansky in Bridgewater Township for one dollar and love and affection.
David G. Palmer and Bessie Palmer to Brian Kozloski and Lisa Kozloski in Gibson Township for $40,000.
James Lezinsky to David R. Taylor in Lathrop Township for bluestone mining operation.
Tax Claim Bureau to Thomas J. Lopatofsky in New Milford Township for $2,100.
Terry A. Moore to Richard Begliomini and Amanda Taylor in Rush Township for $97,000.
Edward J. Bryk and Mary Jeanette Bryk to Vincent Bryk and Mary Bryk in Springville Township for $1.
Randall A. Steere and Gail M. Steere to Gerald A. Yeomans and Marguerite Yeomans in Liberty Township for $17,500.
Gerald A. Yeomans and Marguerite Yeomans to Gerald A. Yeomans and Mrguerite Yeomans in Liberty Township for $1.
Henrietta Stark by her Attorney-in-Fact, Craig R. Spencer, to Craig R. Spencer in Forest Lake Township for $1 ogvc.
Benson and Rachel W. Bartron to First Energy in Dimock Township for easement.
Cathy A. Burgess nbm Cathy A. Castrogiovanni and Mathew Castrogiovanni to Patrick J. O'Brien and Gayle R. O'Brien in Brooklyn Township for $119,000.
David S. Andre and Priscilla H. Andre to Scott R. Warren in Montrose Borough for $103,000.
Frank Novitch to Jeremy Choplosky in Lenox Township for bluestone mining operation.
Kenneth M. Payne to Elinore P. Fitzgerald in Hallstead Borough for $47,000.
Lawrence T. O'Reilly and Christine M. O'Reilly to William T. Perine and Kathleen C. Perine in Apolacon Township for $40,000.
Thomas J. O'Reilly and Lawrence T. O'Reilly and Christine M. O'Reilly to Michael P. Fedor and Roberta M. Fedor in Apolacon Township for $27,000.
National City Home Loan Services, Inc. fka Altegra Credit Co. to Todd W. Heller, Jr. in Harmony Township for $65,000.
Michael E. Jones and Diane Jones to Andrew R. Bednarz, Jr. in New Milford Township for $22,000.
Frances Mitchell to Sally M. Stone and Kendall L. Mitchell in Bridgewater Township for $1.
Dorothy A. Usher and Gerard R. Usher to James M. McIlwee and Rosemary McIlwee in Forest City Borough for $53,000.
John Garafano to James B. Farrell in Herrick Township for $20,000.
Steven Alnick and Tiina Alnick to Judith LaPenta in Forest City Borough for $22,500.
John W. Burnard to Rebecca White in Susquehanna Depot Borough for $1.
James Haggerty, Jr. to John F. Sullivan in Oakland Township for $22,500.
Bette Sosnoski to Walter S. Sosnowski & Karen M. Sosnowski in Forest City Borough for $1.
Wachovia Bank, National Association, to Frank J. Smith and Donna Marie Smith in Forest City Borough for $26,500.
Anne Marie Inman to Anne Marie Inman and Charles R. Inman in Springville Township for $1 ogvc.
PennDOT to S. New Milford Baptist Church in New Milford Township for highway occupancy permit.
Ann Marie Antinnes, nka Ann Marie Strope to Ann Marie Strope in Dimock Township for $1.
Dolores Luciani nka Dolores Ann Nevins to Jeannine Keefer & William Roberts in Lanesboro Borough for $5,000.
Leroy Weidow and Darlene Weidow to Lee Weidow in Gibson Township for $1.
Update & Correction
An interesting addendum to the recent primary election was validated by Judge Kenneth Seamans as he allowed a cumulation of votes for write-ins under the Democratic party for the office of County Treasurer.
Incumbent Cathy Benedict received a majority of the votes in the Republican vote, where both she and Ellen O'Malley had been on the ballot. But, apparently, there had been a real effort for write-ins on the other ticket. After the Judge ordered that all write ins could be cumulated, it opened the door for O'Malley to appear on the November ticket as a Democrat candidate.
Candidates ask for cumulations, or totaling of all the votes, when the names written in are done using different spellings. It is up to the Judge to determine if the various spellings were meant to be a vote for the same candidate.
O'Malley's total write-ins among Democrats came to 169 while Benedict's came to 163. If O'Malley fills out a candidate affidavit and submits a filing fee, she can be included on the ballot in November, while Benedict will remain as the Republican candidate.
According to Linda Hollenbeck of the Voter Registration office, the ballots in November will have the Democrat candidates listed first under each office. The order of listing is determined by the party of the current Governor. Since Rendell is a Democrat, that party will hold the number one spot.
As reported earlier, in the Mountain View School District, Susan Christiansen won heavily over Thomas E. Salansky in the Republican nomination. The outcome was unknown on the Democratic ticket as Salansky, who was listed on the ballot, received 34 votes, but there was a larger number of write-ins. The final tally shows there were 40 write-ins for Christiansen, so she will be the Democratic candidate, and Salansky will not be on the ballot.
In the Susquehanna Community School Board Election, it was erroneously reported about Region 2's selection of candidates. Region 2 comprises Susquehanna Borough and was won by Martha Stanford in both the Republican and the Democrat slot, having run again Margaret Biegert.
Two openings needed filling in Region 3 which includes Ararat, Harmony and Thompson Townships, along with Thompson and Starrucca Boroughs. The totals of both Susquehanna and Wayne precincts in the Republican race saw Evelyn A. Cottrell as the highest vote getter with 139 votes who will run with Jack Downton who received 136 votes. On the Democrat ticket, the winners after totaling both county's precincts were Evelyn A. Cottrell with 58 votes and Steven M. Stanford with 46.
Hop Bottom Meeting
The Hop Bottom Borough Council meeting was well attended on Tuesday evening, June 3. There were many issues that came before the Council.
Borough President, Janice Webster, noted that mulch has been ordered for the park. Regarding the culvert, since the Army Corps. of Engineering will be doing the inspection this year, there is a lengthy list to deal with. One of the items discussed was the use of hydraulic cement on patching in places.
Mayor, Paul Henry, read the police report that included 11 traffic citations, three court hearings, and one assist with other agencies. It is noted that watershed meetings for Martens Creek will take place on the third Tuesday of each month.
Regarding zoning issues, Shane Lewis of COG gave information on L & I permits on commercial change of use permits. As soon as the inspection is done at Tubs Pizza, the Borough will be released from liability.
Asa Pratt is doing a scale drawing on the remodeling of the Borough Hall on Forest Street. Information shared on the newly acquired Stout property for the housing of the police vehicle on that site indicated that county bids are out on the demolition job that will be done via a grant. All parties concerned are waiting for the grant itself to come from Harrisburg.
There will be a cleanup day on the former Stout property on Saturday, June 7, starting at 8 a.m. Liability insurance on the property and fire insurance for the housing for the police car are obtained.
Yard sale day in the borough will take place on July 19. More information will be shared on this annual event as it is received from the Council.
John Kosinski will help with planning new swales and catch basins on Adams Street. John Sanauskas will now mow the grass on the island by the blinker.
Badges will be provided to people who have responsibilities to direct people who are physically challenged or in poor health for the EMA-related borough plans for Hop Bottom during emergencies.
Veronica Bradley has offered to do a bike safety program for children in the borough. In a related matter there were concerns recently about unsupervised children on bikes in the upper part of town.
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