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The Susquehanna Community School board met for their regular meeting on February 18; all members were present with the exception of Mike Kosko.
The board approved the minutes of the January 21 meeting as well as filing of the treasurers report, the general fund bills, the food service report, the activity fund and athletic fund reports.
Superintendent Stone reported that Title VI funds have been used to purchase a 24-unit laptop computer cart for the high school.
During report of district personnel, Mr. Stone was pleased to present board member/secretary Evelyn Cottrell with a certificate in recognition of serving twenty years on the board. He thanked her for her work on behalf of the board and for the children of the community.
And, Mr. Stone reported that funds from a Block Accountability Grant should be forthcoming in April, although the exact amount the district will be receiving is not definite as yet, as the legislature has not yet been finalized. However much the funding is, a substantial portion has been tentatively earmarked to implement a four-year old pre-kindergarten program.
Business manager Ray Testa urged the board to take action to show their opposition to a referendum that had been discussed at the prior evenings work session; the referendum, he said, would not have a positive effect and could hamper the boards ability to "run" (govern) the district. (More on the referendum later.)
Elementary principal Robert Keyes noted that, during a Kindness and Justice Challenge program that took place the previous month, 1,256 acts of kindness had been recorded during a two-week period where school had only been in session a total of seven days. A remarkable feat in such a short period of time, he noted. Evaluations conducted by the University of Scranton have been completed in the Special Ed program, with the reading curriculum evaluation to be completed in March. The feedback from these evaluations will be used to plan for program improvement. And, Mr. Keyes reported that there has been a good response from a survey that had been conducted regarding the pre-K program. Tentatively, 49 students will be enrolled in kindergarten next year, and the parents of 41 children have indicated interest in enrolling their children in the pre-K program.
High school principal Mike Lisowski reported that on February 5, a speaker had addressed the students at an assembly; she is the sister of Rachel Scott, who had been a victim at Columbine High School. The program had been very well received by the students. Dean of Students Mark Gerchman agreed, and added that she had been a very "powerful" speaker and that he had never before witnessed a program where there had been complete silence throughout the room. Mr. Lisowski commended a district student who had placed second in an automotive diagnostic competition, as well as two students who had obtained their credentials in the program. And, the district has been fortunate to participate in a unique Microsoft rewards program; the district has been named a certified test center for testing in proficiency in several areas. Usually, he said, adults and college students take the required test, with distinct benefits to those who successfully complete the testing, including advantages in business, college, resumes and job hunting; in the districts first year of participation, one freshman has successfully completed the testing, which earned him college credit.
Mr. Gerchman reported that the faculty has been getting ready for PSSA writing tests, to be conducted the week of February 23, with math and reading tests to be conducted in March. Teachers will be spending several weeks prior to the tests preparing students.
Teacher Joni Miller reported that the faculty has been working on an early intervention service, to be integrated with the pre-K program.
Maintenance Supervisor Donny Norris will be looking at ways to "brighten" the gym, and in the spring will be checking into a problem with the buildings roof.
Teacher Mike Catalano noted that PSEA members, local and statewide will be "spreading the word" on the referendum mentioned earlier in the meeting, and urging members to oppose it.
During public comment, in response to a question, Mr. Stone explained just what the referendum in question is. The governor, he said, has goals for massive improvements in the state education system. The legislature, however, has a goal of property tax reform, and these two goals would seem to conflict each other. There needs to be a compromise, he said; the governors plan includes revenues from gambling, which would result in real estate tax relief for homeowners. But, a "back end referendum" of the legislatures proposal would allow a districts residents to vote on its budget if an increase in taxes for the next fiscal year includes an increase over a certain percentage, which varies in different categories. The end result could be that voters would defeat tax increases, which would then result in cutting programs within the district. Although he strongly supports letting voters determine a districts tax revenue, there could be long-term effects on the public education system.
(Information available through the PA School Boards Association indicates that the referendum would require that tax increases exceeding a certain percentage would need to be put on the ballot, making it more difficult for a board to plan and set goals beyond a year at a time. Provisions in HB 113 covers, among other items, property tax relief and education funding. If passed, a district would have to go to referendum twice; first, to ask voters if income based taxes should be increased, which would be done at the general election in the fall. Then, a second, back-end referendum would be required for property tax increases that exceed a specific index, which would take place during primary elections. The present legislation would present somewhat of a conundrum, as primary elections are held in the spring, requiring that districts budgets be finalized before the governor presents his yearly budget, usually in February. And, as there is no guarantee that revenue from the expansion of gambling would be consistent from one year to the next, revenues to be used for property tax reductions would be inconsistent.)
In other business, the board granted permission for the business office to solicit bids for general maintenance, industrial arts and sports supplies for the 2004-05 school year, and granted permission for Mr. Stone to file federal and state program applications for the 2004-05 school year.
The board approved a change in the students instructional day, as of the 2004-05 school year; dismissal will be 3:05 instead of 3:00 p.m. And, at that time, the high school schedule will be changed from a seven-period day to an eight-period day. The conversion, Mr. Stone said, has many advantages; it will allow more flexibility within the schedule, will give students more time to spend on academic subjects where they are doing poorly, and will allow the option to offer different electives. Career courses will be offered, as well as math and verbal, and more world history and geography, all of which will better allow students to meet state academic standards.
The board approve a change to the districts strategic plan graduation requirements to mandate 25 credits for graduation purposes. The credits will be phased in over the next four years, with 22 credits required in 2005, 23 in 2006, 24 in 2007 and 25 in 2008; the change included a breakdown of credit requirements for specific subjects. With the day broken down into eight periods, Mr. Stone, said, students could conceivably earn up to 32 credits. And, students attending Elk Lake Vo-Tech for their senior year will not be required to earn four social studies credits, but will be required to earn three social studies credits to be eligible for graduation.
The board approved the purchase of DocStar, a technologically enhanced method of data storage and retrieval. Mr. Stone explained that the district has been running out of storage space, as the state requires that educational records be kept for a long period of time. The DocStar system would be implemented gradually, beginning with old student records, then financial records. Finally, current records would be stored, working back to include older records. The system would facilitate electronic transmission of students records for colleges and universities and would be more efficient than "snail mail."
The board approved additions to the substitute list: Sandi Taylor and Brenda Lee, clerical; Andrea Matta, clerical/food service; Jamie Klossner, elementary education; Amy Rendle, elementary and special education; and bus drivers Dawn Repa and Richard Repa.
Resignations were approved from Alan Lloyd, elementary wrestling coach; Bob Gilleran, junior high girls softball coach; Denise Reddon, varsity softball coach; Frances Durso, assistant varsity softball coach; Melissa Urbas, assistant girls track coach.
Hiring of the following was approved: Frances Durso, varsity softball coach; Sue Haynes, assistant varsity softball coach; Dave Conroy and Phil Stein, junior high softball coaches (one year only); Matthew Orner, assistant varsity baseball coach; Steve Felter and Pete Downton, junior high baseball coaches (one year only); Robin Burdick, assistant boys track coach; Rachael Gilleran, girls softball scorekeeper; and Jeff Hall, girls assistant track coach.
Homebound instruction was approved for a ninth grade student, as well as a bus change for number 19, effective February 2.
The board approved the reimbursement of Per Capita Taxes paid prior to exoneration for two district residents; the taxes had been paid before exoneration applications were available.
The board approved requests for activities, conferences, workshops, field trips and fund-raisers.
The next meeting will be on Wednesday, March 17, 7:30 p.m. in the administration offices.
The officers of the municipalities that belong to the Susquehanna County Council of Governments and its Sewage Enforcement and Codes Enforcement Committees got a lot of good information and participated in discussions on a variety of subjects at its regular meetings on February 17.
County Commissioner MaryAnn Warren was in attendance, and COG President Eliott Ross thanked her, on behalf of the group, for her interest in the groups and members involvement in the best interests of their respective communities.
It was an evening of elections, and the current COG roster Ross as chair, Charlie Fahringer, vice chair, and Bill Bayne, treasurer was renominated and elected. Bayne was unable to attend the meeting, and it was noted that, should he not wish to continue as treasurer, another election would be held for that position. The bylaws of the group state that no member can hold an office for three consecutive terms and none of the current officers qualify for that.
Randy Decker from PENNDOT stopped by, as he often does, usually passing along some good information. At this meeting, he passed along some really nice things he heard about the group. He recently had a meeting with Joe Krumski of DECD and Krumskis supervisors when the topic of building codes can up. Krumski held up the Susquehanna County COG as an example of the right approach to enforcement of the new universal construction codes (UCC), especially for smaller municipalities. "They have a handle on it," he said, according to Decker.
These were good things to hear, as Decker explained, because it not only makes you feel good, but also because the powers-that-be in Harrisburg are also aware of whats going on up here.
Decker always asks the audience if it has any questions, and one member did, about a materials supplier who wants the township to fill out papers on state bids for materials. Apparently the state has a price from a quarry and the township can piggyback on it. Decker replied that the only requirement to purchase material out of a piggyback system was to have a resolution stating such on file in Harrisburg. "If you can get what you feel is a good price, its perfectly legal to do a piggyback system," he said.
Another member asked if the problem with cinders and buying certified cinders has been resolved. Decker said it has not, adding that he has a standing request for them if and when they become available. And while winter is winding down, theres still plenty left of it. Nevertheless, it was hoped that warm weather is more the norm, and that the cinder problem will be fixed at least in time for next winter.
Before leaving, Decker told members that PENNDOT has developed a form to make it easier for municipalities to take phone quotes for materials. Decker will drop the forms off at COG offices for members who are interested in using them.
In his street/road sign committee report, Ross informed members about a promotion by the sign-materials provider that COG uses. Its having a sale on a high-grade vinyl that generally retails for about $50 for a 30-inch stop sign. COG currently uses a grade that costs about $23, a bit below a grade that retails for $28. The high-grade is being reduced from $50 to $28 through the end of March. The high-grade vinyl, says Ross, is highly reflective. Ross didnt know what member municipalities had or had plans for in the way of stop signs or a common street sign that didnt need to be individually made, but he thought it sounded like a deal. Thus, he asked members to see what they might need, and bring the results to the next meeting. If theres enough, the group could order a quantity for the municipalities.
Mike Greene told members about efforts that he and Bayne and other municipal representatives have been spearheading in getting changes made to the current state Clean and Green Act. He told members that House bill 657, which makes modifications to the act so it is less onerous and devastating to area municipalities, is currently before the Agricultural and Rural Affairs Committee, where it may languish. He doesnt want this to happen. Thus, he urged municipal representatives to write their state senators and express their concern. Letting them know the effect the act has had on their tax base might bring the point home.
The Thompson Township board of supervisors has already written Senator Lemmond of its concern, and Greene reported that Ararat Township would soon do the same. He distributed copies of the letter as a kind of boilerplate for members to modify or amend with statistics relevant to their circumstances. And although COG has already sent a letter to representatives and senators, as Greene said, "If 25 townships write a letter, thats better than one."
Secretary Cheryl Wellman reported that the COG website can now be visited at www.susqcog.org. She recommended that members check it out and let her know if theres anything that needs to be changed.
Before adjourning, the group got good news. COG Sewage and Codes secretary Karen Trynoski reported that the group received a $14,000 grant to purchase laptops for employees out in the field, for the office and to network the office computers. Trynoski will now set to work on receiving bids and getting the most out of COGs recent grant.
SEWAGE ENFORCEMENT COMMITTEE
With president Rick Pisasiks term expiring in 2006 and vice president Rudy Mattes in 2005, only two elections needed the conducting at the meeting of this group. It nominated and elected Mike Greene as its secretary/treasurer for a three-year term, and Fred Jackson to continue for another one-year term as alternate member to the executive committee. SEOs Duane Wood and Jim Tracey were reappointed; Pisasik informed the group that, as of the end of January, Ken Laurie was no longer with the group "in a regular capacity," but would be available as an on-call worker should Sewage need the extra help.
Pisasik asked Wood to lead off a discussion on requests the Committee has received from some member municipalities for COG to handle the permitting of portable toilets. This is not something that COG currently does, nor, said Wood, would it want to require municipalities to have this done by COG along with their other enforcement work. However, he thought that if a member asked COG to handle portable toilet permitting for it, then it was reasonable to accommodate them, provided COG received a letter from the municipality authorizing it.
Except for portable toilets that are expected to be in use for an extended period of time (say, at a construction site or at a quarry), Pisasik reported that DEP generally leaves how to handle toilets brought in for special events (like local festivals) up to the discretion of the municipality.
Considerable discussion followed as to whether COG should inspect this kind of toilet at quarries or festivals, and if it did, what policies would be followed. It did not want to find itself in the position of permitting and inspecting according to various and different ordinances, but it did want to respond to member requests. And while the consensus was that a municipality would be responsible for enforcing any ordinance it had regarding portable toilets, the group would prefer that COG establish a policy and guidelines for issuing permits and doing the inspections that would apply to anyone requesting these services. Pisasik said he and secretary Karen Trynoski would research what other municipalities have as policies, and check with PSATS to see if they have a model policy, and will report back to members at the March meeting.
Wood next brought up a situation in Franklin Township where a new type of DEP-approved system on a little lot is treating wastewater and discharging it into a pond. Similar situations are expected in other member municipalities.
In order to put in and continue operating this kind of system, however, a maintenance agreement must be signed between the municipality and property owners and administered according to an ordinance that applies to this particular type of system. COG members were told that counsel Jason Legg has developed such an ordinance that addresses DEP concerns and is available for adoption by COG member municipalities. And while members need to adopt any ordinance individually, they would save significant money if they accepted it in concert. In other words, if municipalities accept it in April, COG would advertise it in May on behalf of these members with members then adopting it. The ordinance would have a common effective date for those adopting it.
With more and more of these systems seeming to be imminent, Greene for one thought the sample ordinance was a good thing. "Its already been checked and its required by the DEP." Members will report back at the groups next meeting. In the meantime, no one had any objections if COG proceeded with the ordinance for Franklin Township, which has an urgent need for it. Wood noted that COG SEOs would, of course, be responsible for inspecting these systems.
In other business, Pisasik noted that executive committee member Greene would be researching benefits packages, reporting his finding to the committee, which will then bring them up for discussion at a later group meeting. It also cited Karen Trynoski, secretary for both the Sewage and Codes Enforcement Committees, for the terrific job she continues to do, and increased her pay to $16 an hour. Trynoski has been diligent in disseminating information to and working with residents of member municipalities (and those who work with them), liaising with government authorities, furthering the interests of COG member municipalities, and tenacious in obtaining grants for the groups.
CODES ENFORCEMENT COMMITTEE
It didnt take long for the Committee to nominate and elect Ted Plevinsky as its president, Mike Greene as vice president and Chuck Mead as its executive secretary/treasurer.
And with that out of the way, secretary Karen Trynoski told members that the UCC election packets were mailed to municipalities on Friday, February 13, so members should expect them shortly. Greene reminded members that a municipality must decide by July 8 whether it is going to opt in or out. For members who decide to opt in, he described a time- and money-efficient way they can do that through COG. It works like this: Counsel Jason Legg has developed an ordinance that can be used by member municipalities and which will be mailed to all COG members for their review or review by their solicitor. Each municipality would then bring it up at its meetings in April. If it decides to opt in, COG will advertise the ordinance for it in May. The municipality would then address it at its June meeting and sign it at that time. COG would then handle the paperwork with the state. Member municipalities who do this will have the same UCC effective date July 1. Alternatively, members can advertise on their own, handle the paperwork themselves, or decide to opt out.
It was important to note, Trynoski said, that a municipality must be a member of Codes by March for it to take advantage of the schedule and savings for the Codes group. Some COG members are not members of the Codes committee, and they will have some big decisions to make soon.
COG members will also be sent a separate sample ordinance developed by Legg and addressing the enforcement and inspection by Codes of nonhabitable, agriculture buildings of less than 500 square feet (and which are outside of the UCC) should the municipality want it. Trynoski emphasized this sample ordinance is completely separate from the UCC, opt-in ordinance. For those adopting it, however, COG will advertise it on their behalf. Municipalities would set their own fee schedule for these smaller buildings, and Codes would charge the municipality for services.
In other business, Plevinsky announced that Shane Lewis is resigning as codes enforcement officer. He thanked Lewis for the work he has done on Codes members behalf. The hourly pay of recent hire and CEO Jim Sellitto was increased from $8 to $10.
Before adjourning, members were reminded of two free seminars COG is sponsoring on the UCC, both of which will be held at the Montrose Bible Conference. One for contractors only is scheduled for March 3 at 6 p.m.; the other is open to the general public and is slated for March 31 at 6 p.m..
The next meeting of the Council of Governments is scheduled for April 27, 7 p.m. in COG offices in the New Milford Borough Building on Main Street.
Council Talks Codes
Hallstead Council met on February 19 for their regular monthly meeting with president Michele Giangrieco presiding. Council members Joe Franks and Mary Rudock were absent.
The first item of discussion was a myriad of complaints, all having to do with the harsh winter recently experienced in our area. It was agreed that everyone will just have to bear with the situation for the time being.
In a related discussion, before next winter council agreed that rock salt should be kept on hand for situations where anti-skid does not work, such as a recent ice storm as well as a secure place to keep it.
Councilman John Giangrieco has asked PENNDOT for information about limiting truck traffic on Susquehanna Ave., as there have been situations where signs have been knocked down and a sharp curve in the road has been a problem with larger trucks unable to get through.
A flat tire on the backhoe had been fixed, and another tire was in need of replacement, total cost approximately $800. A motion carried to complete the repairs, with $650 of the cost to be taken from the highway aid fund.
There was a lengthy discussion about the states Uniform Construction Code, expected to be enacted early in April. Municipalities will have until July 8 to determine whether it will administer and enforce the code. To enforce the code, an ordinance must be passed adopting the UCC, taking effect during the 90-day period between April 9 and July 8. If a municipality decides not to enforce the UCC, this decision also must be formalized during the 90-day period. Applicants for building permits must then contract with a certified, third party agency for residential permits and inspections; commercial construction would require that permits and inspections be secured through the Dept. of Labor and Industry. Council discussed whether a part-time CEO or a third-party agency could be found to issue permits and conduct inspections. It was agreed to contact the county and the Dept. of Labor and Industry for more information.
There was no news on the foundry property; the boros solicitor is in the process of reviewing the nuisance ordinance, particularly pertaining to dilapidated and unsafe structures. Once his review is complete, he will address what steps council should take next.
There was a short discussion regarding sump pumps; there had been some question as to whether it was allowable for a line to pump water out of a basement, where it has been running down onto a sidewalk. Ms. Giangrieco, who sits on the board of the sewer authority, noted that letters had been sent to all boro homeowners reminding them that sump pumps were not to empty water into the sewer system; this would indicate that the line in question is allowable. She added that the authority will be conducting inspections; homeowners whose sump pumps are emptying into the sewer system will be fined.
Several options were discussed regarding a complaint about vehicles driving through a yard at the intersection of New York Ave. and Pine St. It was agreed that the boro should not install a guard rail; this would leave the boro liable if there were to be any accidents. Another suggestion was that, in the spring, a white line be painted along the side of the road, so that drivers would be aware of where the berm is. And, the owner has the option of installing a fence on the owners side of the right-of-way.
Correspondence reviewed included a letter from PENNDOT regarding restricting parking in a limited area at the intersection of Susquehanna Ave. and Harmony Road. The letter indicated that the restriction would have a favorable impact on traffic attempting to enter Route 11 from either of those routes. Total loss of parking spaces would be five on either side of Route 11. PENNDOT will take appropriate actions if council decides to enact an ordinance prohibiting parking in this area.
The final topic of discussion was whose responsibility it is to shovel around fire hydrants; is it the boros, the water companys, or the homeowners? The matter was tabled for further information.
The next meeting will be on Thursday, March 18, 7:00 p.m. in the boro building.
Sometime between 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 14 and 9:00 p.m. the next day Michelle Osborne, Montrose, missed a booklet of checks from her checking account. According to the police report, it was not clear as to what exactly happened to these checks. Call PSP Gibson with any information.
Price Chopper Supermarket, Bridgewater Township, reported that a few days prior to Feb. 13, someone passed counterfeit money to a cashier in the store. Call PSP with any information.
Upon opening the Susquehanna County Humane Society, Bridgewater Township, on Feb. 12 at 8:00 a.m., a burglary was discovered where someone broke a window and entered the building. An inventory of stolen items is pending.
Amy E. Burgess, 44, Laceyville, was not injured when her 1996 Jeep Cherokee, traveled off of State Route 858, Little Meadows Borough, on Feb. 15 at 2:10 p.m., and flipped onto its side.
MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT
Wesley Nickerson, 44, Cumberland, MD, was traveling on Interstate 81, New Milford Township, when his steering wheel broke off and he lost control of the 1987 Honda Accord he was operating on Feb. 13.
Someone forcibly gained entry into Raymond C. Truex's home on Tyler Lake Rd., Harford Township, between 12:01 a.m. on Feb. 9 and midnight on Feb. 13. Removed were a Go video DVD/VCR combination and three DVDs. Call PSP Gibson with any information.
ATTEMPTED THEFT/CRIMINAL MISCHIEF
Garrett J. Yakoski, Springville, was taken into custody for attempting to steal coins from the Buggy Bath Carwash, Bridgewater Township, on Feb. 13 at 3:00 a.m. Yakoski was caught in the act by the carwash owner, D. Rexford Maxey, Montrose.
Anna Su, 65, Vestal, had her seasonal cabin in Forest Lake Township burglarized. Taken were a set of "duck" figurines and life jackets. The incident occurred on Feb. 13. Contact PSP Gibson with any information.
Gerald M. Purtell, Lynch Rd., Apolacon Township, had his home burglarized on Feb. 13. Approximately $500 in cash and a "Sentry" safe, Model # 1250, containing personal items were taken. Call PSP Gibson with any information.
Between Jan. 31 at 1:30 p.m. and Feb. 1 at 5:00 p.m., someone entered Cosmello Auto Parts, New Milford Borough, and removed the front and rear bumpers of a parked 2001 Chevy Cavalier, along with ground effects lighting which was attached to both the left and right sides of the vehicle. Call PSP Gibson with any information.
PUBLIC DRUNKENNESS/CRIMINAL MISCHIEF
Tara Papa, Towanda, got intoxicated at the Hayloft Bar, Rush Township, on Feb. 11 at 9:30 p.m., and was cut off by the bartender and removed from inside the bar. Papa then damaged another patron's vehicle and trespassed on the property of a neighbor before getting a ride home. Charges were filed with District Justice Watson Dayton.
A trailer located at Weida's Trailer Court, State Route 374, Lenox Township, belonging to David Powanda (landlord/renter), Dalton, was entered while the trailer was vacant. Several appliances were removed. Call PSP with information on this Jan. 8 incident.
On Feb. 10 at 7:50 p.m., Christina L. Birchard, 21, Nicholson, was physically assaulted by her boyfriend, Kenneth Burgess, 20, Hop Bottom, at Weida's Trailer Park, Lenox Township. Birchard stated that she was pushed to the ground by Burgess and was kicked and punched. She refused medical treatment at the scene. Burgess was arrested for domestic assault and arraigned before District Justice Watson Dayton, given a nominal bail and released.
Foster H. Oakley, State Route 848, New Milford Township, reported that his mailbox was damaged on Feb. 9 between 3:30 and 5:00 p.m.
Michael R. Lindquist, 46, Susquehanna Borough, and Linda Lou Clapper, 34, Susquehanna Borough.
David Paul Shipsky, 37, Clifford Township, and Ruth Irene Hunter, 38, Clifford Township.
Robert Jay Ralston, 41, Meshoppen, and Lauretta Ann Button, 44, Meshoppen.
Kenneth W. Fisher, Jr., 49, Susquehanna, and Loretta Corse, 48, Susquehanna.
Joshua A. Lawrence, 18, no municipality given, and Frances J. Buchta, 19, Great Bend Township.
George Napolitano and Rebecca Napolitano, by Sheriff, to Wachovia Bank fka First Union National Bank in Susquehanna Depot Borough for $1, 585.48 on Jan. 20.
George R. Haskins and Marilyn L. Haskins to Scott L. Glezen and Jacquelynne Glezen in Great Bend Township for $45,000 on Feb. 11.
John W. Compton and Gwen A. Compton to Jeremy S. Beach and Dolcinea Beach in Choconut Township for $71,000 on Jan. 13.
Barbara Heath to Terry L. Ralston, Sr. in Liberty Township for $1 on Feb. 6.
Robert A. Canfield aka Robert C. Canfield and Dorothy A. Canfield to Robert C. Canfield and Dorothy A. Canfield in New Milford Township for $1 on Feb. 10.
Bernard F. Megivern by Sheriff to The Secretary of Veterans Affairs of Washington, D.C. in Clifford Township for $862.19 on Jan. 13.
John W. Purtell to Brett W. Bennett and Amy L. Bennett in Little Meadows Borough for $25,000 on Feb. 4.
Gerald L. Carlin & Tinamarie Carlin to Susquehanna County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in Auburn Township for conservation easement for $87,810.86 on Feb. 12.
Equity One, Inc. to Patrick Lynn and Gina Lynn in New Milford Township for $90,000 on Jan. 21.
United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development to Paul W. Tallett in Forest City for $56,109 on Feb. 5.
Betty N. Phipps to Jonathan N. Phipps in Silver Lake Township for $1 on Feb. 10.
Elinor M. Fritz to Elinor M. Fritz in Harford Township for $1 on Feb. 9.
Ronald Roeder to Kevin M. Millard and Sandra M. Millard in Bridgewater Township for $1 ogvc on Jan. 7.
Irene Monteforte and Mary Monteforte to Ireno Monteforte and Mary Monteforte in New Milford Township for $1 on Feb. 2.
Thomas A. Kropa and Claire L. Kropa to Thomas A. Kropa in Springville Township for $1 on Jan. 21.
Stanley E. Sanders & Margaret J. Sanders to Stanley E. Sanders in Springville Township in $1 on Feb. 2.
Kevin M. Millard aka Kevin Millard and Sandra M. Millard to Robert C. Wert and Grace E. West in Bridgewater Township for $115,000 on Feb. 13.
William Lawrence and Debra Lawrence to Robert C. Wert and Grace E. Wert in Bridgewater Township for $500,000 on Feb. 13.
John L. Bronson and Gertrude Bronson to Robert C. Wert and Grace E. Wert in Montrose Borough for $175,000 on Feb. 13.
Stephen Bruno and Penny A. Bruno to Joel M. Levy in Franklin Township for $35,000 on Feb. 16.
William R. Brown and Nance J. Brown to Robert A. Belicose and Sueanne M. Belicose for $125,000 for Feb. 4.
Dawn M. Lewis nbm Dawn M. Koehler and Robert G. Koehler to Robert G. Koehler and Dawn M. Koehler in New Milford Borough for $1 on Feb. 16.
Mary Fancher and William Fancher and Robert J. Hilling and Kathleen A. Hilling to Glen Whitney and Christine Whitney in New Milford Borough for $77,000 on Feb. 11.
Starrucca Boro Council met on February 5 in the Starrucca Community Hall.
The following members were present, Andy Bennett, Pete Downton, MaryAnne Debalko, Lou Gurske and Helen Haynes. Council member Paul Everett was absent. Also absent from the meeting was Mayor Frank Mroczka. The meeting began with the reading of last months minutes. After much discussion in regards to a letter received from the Bureau of Elections about the vacant seventh council seat and how this letter was handled the minutes were approved as read. Discussion about this letter continued at this point and a motion carried that the Boros Solicitor be contacted in regards to the vacancy on the council. Council will await a response form the solicitor before further action is taken.
Treasurers Report :
Dean Rhone presented the treasurers report, a motion to pay all the bills except the bill from Dave Hobart carried. The road committee will meet with Mr. Hobart and the bill will be paid after this meeting at the agreed upon amount between the road committee and Mr. Hobart.
A letter was received from Delores Martin resigning her position as Tax Collector. A motion to accept her resignation carried. A letter was also received from Dean Rhone resigning effective March 1 from the position of secretary. A motion to accept his resignation carried. Anyone interested in applying for the secretary position should attend the next council meeting. The Boro is also still in need of an Emergency Management Coordinator and anyone interested in the position should also attend this meeting.
Persons to be Heard:
Kathy Downton expressed interest in filling the Tax Collector position. A motion to appoint her as Tax Collector passed by majority, Pete Downton abstained.
Mr. Rhone spoke to County Warden about getting the hall painted; the Warden would like to come look at the hall in late February and will put it on his list to perform the work in late April. The issue of changing the locks at the Community Hall was also discussed; Mr. Downton will check into this and report his findings back to council.
MaryAnne DeBalko spoke in regards to finding cheaper insurance rates for the Boro. A motion to switch from Tri-County Insurance to DGK carried.
Mr. Downton informed council on how the last COG meeting went and informed council that Starrucca Boro is now a voting member, as Starrucca Boro was accepted unanimously into the Northern Wayne Council of Governments.
Lou Gurske reported that he had spent much of his day on February 2 on Penn Hill Road, and let council know that Dave Hobart had to clear away some of the snow at the far end of the road with a loader. Kellogg Road was briefly discussed and Mr. Gurske has agreed to look into grants to repair this road because council anticipates that it could be very expensive to try to fix the area of Max Pond in the spring. There continues to be an on-going water problem in this area, due to the presence of beavers in the pond. The beavers continue to plug the set up that is there. FEMA was supposed to provide money to the Boro to make some repairs on this road and on the Jacobs Ladder road; the money has not yet been received. Mr. Downtown will follow up on this matter.
There being no further business motion for adjournment.
They said it could not be done. The Doubting Thomass, who pop up in every community, surfaced in Clifford Township a few months back and said the Board of Supervisors would never get reimbursed any of the money it shelled out to update the townships Act 537 Official Wastewater Facilities Plan.
However, last Wednesday the township did receive a check in the amount of $9,000 which is equivalent to 50 percent of the money the supervisors paid to David Klepadlo and Associates to update the plan.
"We are thrilled," said John Regan, chair of the Board of Supervisors. "Finally the Act has been updated and we are going forward."
Regan recalled the negative attitude on the part of some residents when the supervisors hired Klepadlo to update the Act 537 Plan.
"It was a big center of controversy," he said. "People said we would never see that money."
It was a bold move considering it was the first year of the Regan administration. Add to it the fact that Regan may have been the first Democrat ever elected to the Board of Supervisors in the township and the thought became even more challenging.
The township did attempt to update the Act back in 1983 but apparently some opposition or perhaps another project sidetracked it and the supervisors never followed through with it. As Regan pointed out, without an updated plan the township was not eligible for any kind of state grants to assist with the installation of a sewer system in the township. Regan said the next step will be to get the total township in compliance with Act 537.
The township can also move forward with its plan to pursue a larger grant to help sewer the Dundaff/Crystal Lake areas. For years, residents of the Crystal Lake area have been after the township as well as neighboring Fell Township to sewer the area.
While it has reimbursed the township half the cost of updating the Act 537, the state has also been somewhat critical of the cost to provide centralized sewer service to the Dundaff/Crystal Lake area. It has never been finalized, but anticipated cost has been guesstimated at $6,200 ($5,200 hookup fee to Greenfield Twp. Sewer Authority where Cliffords raw sewage will be sent for processing, and $1,000 hookup fee to Clifford Township) plus an estimated monthly user fee of $41 which will be applied toward the townships share of the project; and, an additional monthly processing fee to Greenfield Twp. that has yet to be determined.
In another matter, Regan said plans are moving forward for some needed work on the township building. The township is hoping it will receive some state aid for installing a roof on the building and for renovating the bathroom facilities.
"I am very proud of the fact that our building is being put to such good use," Regan said. He said it is used as a distribution center for the Meals on Wheels Program, as a meeting place for Boy and Girl Scouts, an exercise class, and a meeting place for senior citizens.
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