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Home Improvement Special Featured In Our April, 26th Issue Of The Susquehanna County Transcript

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Issue Home April 18, 2006 Site Home

New Stop Signs In Jackson Twp.
Cub Scout Pack 81 Pinewood Derby
Parents: Friends or Foes Workshop Set
Lanesboro Council Meeting Minutes
Draught Watch For Entire State
Countywide Burn Ban Extende
2006 Barnyard Tour
Jim Garner addresses the Barnyard Tour participants
4-H News Sizzlin’ Steaks.

New Stop Signs In Jackson Twp.

DUNMORE  – PennDOT plans to install new Stop signs during the week of April 24 at the junction of Potter Hill Road (State Route 1004) and Deer Ridge Road (State Route 1006) and township roads Pages Road and Brown Hill Road in Jackson Township, Susquehanna County.

New STOP, STOP AHEAD and “4-WAY” signs will be installed on Routes 1004/1006.

After safety concerns were raised in the community, PennDOT traffic engineers studied the intersection and determined that the new Stop signs were warranted.

PennDOT advises extra caution when approaching these intersections in Jackson Township as drivers adjust to the changes.

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Cub Scout Pack 81 Pinewood Derby

Tim Braun – Den Leader for Tigers/Wolves Den

Cheryl Hubal – Den Leader for Bear Den

On Saturday, March 11, the Cub Scouts from Pack 81 held their Pinewood Derby Race at the Susquehanna Community Elementary School.  There were 23 participants with each receiving awards ranging from Most Creative Design to Funniest Artwork. 

The overall winners were:  Tigers/Wolves den - Trevor Passetti (1st) ,  Brandon Gow (2nd), Daniel Braun (3rd); Bear den - Keith Hubal (1st), Christian Miller (2nd), Daniel Staros (3rd).

Pinewood Derby Race Winners pictured (l-r) are: front row - Brandon Gow, Trevor Passetti, Daniel Braun; back row - Keith Hubal, Christian Miller, Daniel Staros.

The Cub Scouts would like to extend a special thank you to the Susquehanna Community Elementary School for allowing them to use their facility and to Jim Borosh,  Cub Scout District Commissioner, for taking time out of his Saturday to bring the track and oversee the derby.

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Parents: Friends or Foes Workshop Set

“Parents:  Friends or Foes” is the title of a workshop being presented by Penn State Cooperative Extension. All child care providers and interested parents can participate in the workshop from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 27, at the County Office Building, 31 Public Ave. Montrose.

Workshop participants will explore this topic from both sides, examining their own feelings and those of parents. Establishing and maintaining a good relationship with parents is a critical part of caring for young children.  Successful child care providers need the skills to be able to set aside their own feelings and biases to focus on working as a team with parents.

Child care providers can receive Department of Public Welfare training credits, Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) and Act 48 hours for participating in this workshop.

For more information on the program, support materials and other services from Better Kid Care Program, call Karen Thomas at 278-1158.

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Lanesboro Council Meeting Minutes

Following are the Lanesboro Council meeting Minutes from March, 2006 as submitted by Gail Hanrahan, secretary.

Roll Call - Dan Boughton, Regina Dilello, Bob Mireider, Bill Roberts, Stan Rockwell, Colleen Wilkes. Also Present – Gail Hanrahan, Mayor Chris Maby.

Action on minutes of previous meeting to approve as presented carried.

Visitors – Sandy Davis, Janet Denny, Adrienne Rigo, Cora Cameron.

Gerry and Sandy Benson are concerned about the removal of a street light on Jail Hill, specifically the light in front of their house.  They noted it is very dark when crossing the street at night and that you cannot see between the remaining lights, as they are around the corner from each other.  Boughton noted the streetlight realignment was just finished last week, which means there is now a light on every other pole throughout the populated areas of Lanesboro.  He also mentioned there may be some spots that need to be revaluated. Mr. Benson noted that Maby stated the relighting would be better, when in fact it is worse.  Maby responded that his statement was that it would be better overall, but there would certainly be less light in some areas.  He also noted that Lanesboro needs some time to evaluate the dark spots for possible changes.  Council also noted that it cannot add lights if they are not justified, as they are setting a precedent by doing so.  Furthermore, additional lights will have an affect on the budget.  Mr. Benson asked for a time frame when something would be decided.  Council responded that the lighting is an ongoing discussion.  Possible changes could include upping the wattage on the poles rather than adding more lights.

Walt Lesser dropped of an application for the snow removal and grass cutting position.

Will Potter, George Houghton, Jennifer Bixby, and Myles Limbert all were interested in the vacant council seat.  Boughton asked for them to hold speaking until the topic was addressed later in the budget.

Correspondence and resolutions - BK Hospital sent a letter asking for use of Luciana Park for an Easter Egg hunt.  Council approved.


Police Report – presented to the Council by Maby.  Monthly summaries will be provided hereon and include scheduled hours worked, call out hours, incidents, accidents, felony arrests, summary arrests, traffic citations, expenses, and miscellaneous other items which vary from month to month.

Code Enforcement Report - Shane explained Solicitor Dewitt got a six-month extension on the Gelineau hearing to allow them further time for demolition.

Problem with garbage (over 100 bags) left on side of Jefferson Street has been taken care of.  Boughton asked if any citations were involved.  Lewis responded that the individual was told the items needed to be removed within 48 hours, or a citation and contact of DEP, etc. would occur.  Garbage was removed less than 12 hours later.

The processing of a compliance order on the abandoned house on the Reed estate has started.  There may be an interested buyer in the property.

Mayor Report - Codebooks ordered – all we have are outdated.  Cost is $245.

The small bridge on the Viaduct end of Depot Street needs to be inspected, starting immediately and then inspected on an every other year basis.  Purpose of inspection is to document any problems with the bridge, which will allow for planning of repairs.  Letters being sent out to engineering firms asking for price and will be discussed at the next meeting.  Without inspection and report, FEMA & PEMA will not reimburse any damages to it caused by flooding, etc.

Tire Recycling Day location change – The Recycling Center does not feel there is enough room at Luciana Park or Community Park to hold the tire-recycling day.   The matter was discussed with SCSD Superintendent Bronson Stone about the school hosting it near the tennis courts.  He agreed, and will present to the school board for approval at their next meeting on March 16.  If successful, this most likely will become a yearly event for Lanesboro.

Gelineau property hearing postponed with a continuance – there are discussions regarding demolition without the need for intervention on Lanesboro’s part.  Building will be removed by late spring at the latest, which is what we were targeting anyway, and if this happens, we will not have spent as much in attorney fees.  An update will be provided at the April meeting.

The signed and executed Agility Agreement has been returned from PennDOT Harrisburg.  Next step is to find something we can trade with them – their preference is a trade involving mowing on sides of roads by Lanesboro, but they are open to suggestions.

Met with Bill White, the new County Assistant Manager from PennDOT.  Discussed ditch and brush on the side of road from Turnpike Street to High School entrance, ditch and stream near Germantown Road, the guardrail and shoulder near the Starrucca Viaduct on Viaduct Street, and a large hole in cross culvert at the end of Turnpike Street.  Bill indicated all of the issues are PennDOT responsibility and they would be taken care of as weather permits.  Gene Perry is the day foreman for this area and will probably be handling the matter.  Called Gene to discuss so that he would not be surprised when Bill spoke with him about it.

Street light relocations are done.  Need to evaluate dark spots and citizen concerns for possible changes in the future.

Had dinner with Lisa Baker, a candidate running for retiring Senator Lemond’s seat in the Pennsylvania Senate.  Enjoyable discussions regarding what issues Lanesboro has with state government.  Most of discussion focused on DEP and soil conservation.  Explained in great detail the problems Lanesboro and its residents have had with DEP regulating water related issues while not providing any financial assistance, mentioned the outright lies Lanesboro was told by DEP field representatives during the TS Ivan flood regarding stream cleanup and FEMA/PEMA reimbursement.  Gary Wilder gave her a tour of Lanesboro and the surrounding area to provide her a snapshot of the water related issues we are still dealing with.  She mentioned she was surprised to see such a beautiful park in a small town – I responded that when government at all levels, local businesses, and citizens join forces, great things can occur and that Community Park is proof of that.

Garbage truck serviced by Cleveland’s Garage.  The garage indicated there were several grease fittings that were missed in previous maintenance.

Budget – reviewed.  All accounts in good standing, which is typically the poorest part of the year for municipalities.

Center Report

Recycling - none this month

Rentals - $325, with $50 taken out for soda, donuts and new mop-heads.

Hiring of employee to do monthly cleanup – Council authorized hiring of Daniel Boughton (son of President Boughton) to provide cleanup (mopping, etc.) as needed.  Regina will coordinate timeframe.  Maby will provide a timesheet.  Pay to come from the Community Center budget.

Unfinished Business:

Council Seat Vacancy – Myles Limbert read letter stating his interest in vacant council seat.  Mr. Will Potter also noted his interest – Maby noted he regretfully had to be dismissed from consideration due to only living in Lanesboro for 10 months.  George Houghton and Jennifer Bixby both announced their interest in the vacant seat.  Council and Mayor excused themselves from the building for a few minutes and went into executive session at the empty Police Station.  Upon returning, Boughton informed everyone that Myles Limbert was selected to fill the seat.  He also noted that it was wonderful to see many people interested and reminded them that the vacancy is filled only until the next election, at which time everyone can run.  Maby also thanked them for their interest and suggested that if they want to become involved in other ways, deputy Emergency Management Coordinators are needed. After the meeting, Jennifer Bixby and Will Potter both asked for additional information regarding the EMC.  Maby forwarding the requested information.

Hiring of new employee for snow removal and mowing – Applications were received from Walt Lesser, Greg Maby, and Daniel Boughton.  Council and Mayor excused themselves from the building for a few minutes and went into executive session at the empty Police Station.  Upon returning, Boughton informed everyone that Greg Maby was selected to fill the snow blowing/mowing position, with summer help to be added when appropriate.

Billboard ordinance – Maby presented an ordinance provided by Solicitor Dewitt used in other municipalities.  After discussion, motion passed to approve ordinance as presented and advertise for formal approval at the April meeting.

New Business - Boughton & Mireider suggested providing some of the gun locks to Joe’s General store for distribution.  Council agreed, Maby will give to Mireider.

Meeting adjourned.

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to Bristen Lynn Phillips, who was three years old on April 17, 2006.

Bristen is the daughter of Jamie Oakley and Brien Phillips.

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Draught Watch For Entire State

HARRISBURG -- Environmental Protection Secretary Kathleen A. McGinty put all 67 Pennsylvania counties under a drought watch and called on residents to voluntarily reduce water use by 5 percent.

“Despite recent rainfall, precipitation levels over the last two months are below normal in every corner of the commonwealth,” McGinty said. “Two-thirds of our counties are 50 percent or more below their normal precipitation levels. The remaining counties are reporting a deficit of at least 25 percent.

“Although conservation is a year-round responsibility, now is the time for residents to manage water resources even more carefully to avoid serious problems if precipitation levels do not return to normal in the coming weeks,” McGinty said.

In addition to below normal precipitation, groundwater and surface water levels are low in many regions of the state. Even in areas with normal or near-normal groundwater and surface water levels, those levels are declining rapidly.

The Susquehanna River is 65 percent below its normal flow. Several streams and rivers recently posted record low flows for this time of year.

Public water suppliers, businesses and industries should monitor supplies during this drought watch period. Water-intensive commercial users should try to conserve water.

A drought watch is the lowest of three levels of drought status, asking for a 5 percent reduction in water use by residents. The next stage, a drought warning, calls for a voluntary reduction of 10 percent to 15 percent. A drought emergency, the final stage, includes mandatory water use reductions of at least 15 percent. Pennsylvania’s last declared drought emergency was in 2002.

All 67 Pennsylvania counties have been in normal status since seven counties on the western edge of Pennsylvania were upgraded from a drought watch to normal on June 18, 2003. With that upgrade, it was the first time since Aug. 8, 2001, that the entire state was normal.

“There are actions that all of us can take to reduce our daily water use in and around our homes,” McGinty said. “Not only will these actions conserve water, but they also will help families save money.”

Indoor water-conservation tips include: Using washing machines and dishwashers only when loads are full. Not running water continuously while shaving, brushing teeth or washing dishes by hand. Refrigerating tap water to avoid running the faucet waiting for cold water. Taking shorter showers. Installing new shower heads and sink faucets equipped with water-saving devices, such as aerators or spray taps. Repairing leaking and dripping faucets and leaking toilets. Replacing older toilets with newer, low-consumption toilets.

Outdoor water-conservation tips include: Holding back from watering lawns, unless newly seeded (grass often goes dormant --- it does not die --- during dry conditions). Limiting vehicle washing. Sweeping sidewalks and driveways, rather than washing them.

More information on drought conditions, as well as real-time monitoring of drought indicators, is available on DEP’s Web site at <>, Keyword: “Drought.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: For Susquehanna county the departure from normal precipitation level over the past 60 days is -3.7 inches, or 51-75% of what is normal for this time of year.

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Countywide Burn Ban Extended

 (Montrose, Pa.)  The Susquehanna County Board of Commissioners in cooperation with the County Fire Chief's and the Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry, District 11, have issued a resolution to extend the temporary ban on open burning in Susquehanna County for an additional thirty (30) days.  The burn ban is in effect until 11:59 pm Monday, May 15. (Resolution 2006-10A)

 Open burning is defined as the burning of any combustible material, such as garbage, leaves, grass, twigs, litter, paper, vegetative matter from clearing land or any sort of debris, either in a burn barrel or on the ground.  Controlled burning done by the fire departments is allowed under this resolution.  Fire department personnel and apparatus must be at the site of the burn.  Propane grills, gas stoves, charcoal briquette grills and the use of tobacco in any form is not covered under this act.

 The resolution makes a violation of the open burning ban a summary offense, punishable by fines of up to $100 for the first offense,  $200 for the second offense and $300 for the third offense.  The act is enforced by local and state police officers.

 Mark Wood, Susquehanna County EMA Coordinator said that in order to have a burn ban, at least 50% of the County Fire Chief's must make the request.  Wood said that there are eighteen fire companies in Susquehanna County, fifteen (15) of those Fire Chief's made the request for the extension.  Even with some rain in the forecast we have had an easy winter and the ground is dry.  The fire companies are looking out for the safety of the residence in their communities.

If you have questions regarding this burning ban you may contact your local fire chief.

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2006 Barnyard Tour

The 2006 Barnyard Tour was delightful.  The goal of the farm tour this year was to show interested farmers and others the steps in planning, design, and construction of a barnyard treatment system and to show the various components of these and related projects in operation.  The purpose of these projects is to preserve environmental quality by preventing water pollution and nutrient loss while adding value to the farmstead.  There are many farm practices which simultaneously protect the environment and enhance the quality of the farm.  These practices are referred to as Best Management Practices (BMP’s).  Most BMP’s not only benefit the health of the environment but also the health of the animals by keeping them cleaner and helping prevent the spread of disease.

The tour bus departed from Montrose at 10 a.m.  The first stop was at the Clough Brothers’ Dairy Farm in Bridgewater Township located in the Meshoppen Creek Watershed.  Jim Garner gave opening remarks and then John Benscoter spoke on some of the design and management strategies implemented here. 

John and Howard Clough have participated in USDA’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP).  Some of the BMP’s featured on the Clough farm include a 5,900 sq. ft. concrete barnyard, a pre-cast screen box, roof gutters, feeding bars on a raised exterior pad for feeding outside of the barnyard, and a milk house / barnyard runoff treatment system.  These features protect surface and ground water from nutrient overload while conserving nutrients to be spread on hay land, which the Clough’s have custom harvested. 

The next stop was Mike Teddick’s farming operation in Brooklyn Township.  Teddick’s farm is part of the Tunkhannock Creek Watershed.  Robert Wagner spoke on the planning and installation of the barnyard project and watering system.  This concrete barnyard, installed in the spring/summer of 2005, was cost shared under EQIP.  The manure from Teddick’s farm is spread daily on hay land.  Some of the BMP’s utilized here include a 5,500 sq. ft. concrete barnyard, a concrete manure spreader shed floor, a pipe drilled under the state road to deliver barnyard runoff to a larger treatment area where excess nutrients are incorporated into harvested land, and headlocks for feeding outside of the barnyard, keeping fodder separate from manure. 

Mike has also enrolled acreage less useful for farming purposes in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP).  Bruce Baessler, USDA-NRCS District Conservationist, talked about opportunities available for farmers through the EQIP and CREP programs.

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Jim Garner addresses the Barnyard Tour participants.

The Fallon Dairy Farm, owned and operated by Paul and Pauline Fallon is located in Lenox Township within the Tunkhannock Creek Watershed.  Their new dairy operation is an expansion from 100 to 300 milking head after a barn fire forced them to rebuild in 2002.  Pauline led the tour of various facilities.

In the process of rebuilding and expanding, the Fallons made use of many new farming practices, infrastructures, and BMPs in order to better manage their operation.  They milk thrice daily in a double dozen milking parlor.  The milking cows, dry cows, calves, and heifers are all housed in different barns.  The open-air barn structure with arched trusses allows good air circulation and prevents bird nesting and floor scrapers moving six feet per minute clean the free-stall isles. 

The Fallon’s have also benefited from participation in EQIP and the CBP cost-share programs.  The manure and milk house wastewater is stored in an earthen waste-storage pond and spread on custom-harvested cropland.  Most of the Fallon’s crops are planted no-till.  After corn is harvested, a no-till cover crop is planted in early autumn in order to enhance soil fertility and to prevent erosion.  Other BMP’s include an 8,000 sq. ft. concrete barnyard, a stone-lined waterway, a hog-slat cattle crossing, and a 2,700 ft. reinforced gravel access road built with innovations used in the Dirt and Gravel Road Program to make roads stronger, less erodible, and longer lasting. 

After a delicious lunch of homemade chili and sandwiches at the Fallon Farm the tour continued east to the Shay Farm which sets on a hilltop about 2,000 feet in elevation in view of Elk Mountain.  Harold and William Shay own and operate this dairy farm in Gibson Township, which is also in the Tunkhannock Creek Watershed. 

The Shay’s dairy herd consists of Holstein and Jersey cows as well as replacement heifers.  The manure from their farm is spread on hay land with a daily haul system.  The Shay’s have participated in EQIP and the CBP.  Some of the BMP’s featured on the Shay farm include a 5,000 sq. ft. concrete barnyard, a 250 ft. reinforced gravel cow lane, and a filter area installed at a 27% slope with the implementation of a flout / distribution pipe, which was demonstrated for the tour group.

At the conclusion of the Tour, the farm owners and agency representatives involved in these barnyard projects answered questions in a group discussion.  Curt Hepler, Susquehanna Conservation District Director, then gave closing remarks and thanked the farm owners and all who participated in this year’s Barnyard Tour.  Anyone interested in learning more about cost-shared conservation practices may contact the Conservation District at 278-4600 ext. 280 or NRCS at 278-1011 ext. 101.

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4-H News Sizzlin’ Steaks

Our 4-H club recently met at the Harford Church Lecture Hall. After we said the pledges we answered roll call with the name of a bird.

We elected the following officers: Pres - Christina Zick; Vice-Pres - Olivia Zick; Secretary - Becky Gardner; Treasurer - Brittany Greenwood; News Reporter - Alyssa Clarkson.

We talked about the window display that we did at the Lenox Pharmacy. We all signed a thank you note to be mailed to them. We also talked about doing derby cars for a club project, but we don’t have enough money. Maybe we will do it next year.

Our group project will be Microwave Magic-level 1-Bag of Tricks.

We talked about community projects and doing something to thank the church for letting our club meet in the lecture hall. We will weed and maintain the memorial garden if the trustees say it is okay. We will plant flowers in the Maplewood Cemetery on all the veterans’ graves for our community project. Mrs. Clarkson will obtain the flowers and we will pay her for them.

We talked about being in a parade in Montrose. This may not be a very good year for our club to tackle this project. We will think about doing it next year.

News Reporter: Alyssa Clarkson.

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