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Issue Home July 25, 2007 Site Home

Food Service Changes At Blue Ridge School
Accolades At Elk Lake

Hallstead Discusses Workmen’s Comp.
Courthouse Report
Gibson Barracks Report
COG Hears “Go Joe” Plans

Food Service Changes At Blue Ridge School
By Ted Brewster

Food Service Director Linda Cole-Koloski and School Nurse Barbara McNamara appeared before the Blue Ridge School Board at its only meeting for July on the 16th to propose a "Universal Free Breakfast" program for the Elementary School. Along the way, they also requested an increase in prices for all other meals at the school.

Ms. Cole-Koloski told Board members that the currently available breakfast program was not serving the children well enough. She said that some parents didn't want children spending from their food accounts for breakfast. Yet it seems that many children have had little or nothing to eat when they arrive. Since the Elementary School lunches are served late, some children often go at least 6-7 hours without eating in the morning.

Ms. McNamara told listeners that children are known to learn better if they have had "the most important meal of the day," a good breakfast. She associated the proposal with the district's updated "wellness policy," and suggested that a nutritious breakfast program could help to boost the district's PSSA performance. The PSSA is Pennsylvania's standard testing program under the Federal No Child Left Behind Act.

Board member Lon Fisher was concerned that the school schedule be adjusted to give the children sufficient time to eat. Board President Alan Hall said that, since the bus schedules have yet to be finalized for the new school year, it should be possible to ensure that 20-30 minutes would be available at the beginning of the school day for children to enjoy the free breakfast.

Business Manager Loren Small told the Board that offering a free breakfast to all Elementary School children would cost the district no more than about $7,000 per year. Many students already qualify for subsidized free meals, and efficiencies in the food service operation have already reduced costs.

In the end, however, the Board voted to approve the free breakfast program because it is expected to help children learn better. Teachers like it because "students come to class ready to learn." Mr. Hall also noted that a bill in the state legislature may ultimately mandate a breakfast program. This new universal free program for the youngest students will also make Blue Ridge a leader in the state.

Ms. Cole-Koloski also asked to implement slightly higher prices for all other meals. Virtually all meals (other than the new free breakfast in the Elementary School) will cost 10 cents more next year. The Food Service Director attributed the higher prices almost entirely to the higher cost of milk. Adjustments will also be made in pricing for a la carte items. Federal subsidies require a different pricing structure that would tend to encourage children to eat a more balanced and nutritious meal. Ms. Cole-Koloski said that some students have been loading up on, say, chicken fingers, and skipping the full meal. The new prices should tend to discourage that sort of thing. She also said that Blue Ridge – unlike some other schools – offers as a la carte choices only items that are on the full menu.

The new "wellness policy" envisions a corresponding "Wellness Committee" of community, administration and board members. Priscinda Gaughan did not decline the honor of serving as the School Board representative.

And vendors were chosen to supply the district with bread and dairy products. With the price of milk rising so sharply, Board member Dawn Franks asked if the administration could be more aggressive in soliciting bids. According to Mr. Small, Hartt Dairy was the only serious bid received and will supply whole milk at 25.79 cents, 1% milk at 23.91 cents, and chocolate milk at 24.39 cents.

Breads will be supplied by Butter Krust and DiRienzo Brothers. Each of the vendors will provide different products; Middle School Principal Matthew Nebzydoski said that DiRienzo's sub rolls were thought to be of higher quality.

Other inedible items on the agenda included an agreement with the county probation department for "school-based probation officer services." With a 3% increase, the probation department will charge the district $10,608.18 next year for the program. Mr. Fisher asked what the consequences might be if the Board turned this aside. High School Principal John Manchester said that the parole officer "does some counseling, unofficially." He is thought to exert a calming influence in some situations. Mr. Manchester estimated that at any time the school might have as many as 10 students or as few as two or three on probation or parole.

Presumably in an attempt to help make parole officers less necessary, the Board also approved a memorandum of understanding with the Foster Grandparent Program for next year. Although the agreement provides for up to three Foster Grandparents for students with special needs, and allows some reimbursement for meals, Mr. Nebzydoski said he thought that the money had never been spent in the past.

Among other routine personnel matters, the Board hired Jamie Torrence as the new Middle School Guidance Counselor at a salary just under $46,000. Ms. Torrence accepted the Board's welcome in person.

The Board also approved a year-end fuel-cost adjustment for the bus contractors. According to Mr. Hall, all of the local school districts provide some sort of adjustment for the volatile fuel prices the contractors must deal with. At Blue Ridge, the adjustments are based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which, at 2.5%, will provide the contractors with a total of just over $21,000 in additional income. Mr. Hall said that he is hoping for some assistance from the new state budget for these fuel-cost adjustments.

Mr. Nebzydoski reported on some preliminary results from the last PSSA exams in the Middle School, calling it a "major accomplishment." In the reading exam, the number of students considered "proficient" jumped from 22% to 86%, "the highest numbers that we've ever had." He also announced that the Red Robin restaurant in Dickson City is offering a free meal each month to a student and his or her family who are "caught doing the right thing." Students will be nominated by their teachers for doing something for someone else on their own, and one name will be drawn monthly for the award. The Red Robin will also be offering discounts for teachers and staff.

Ryan Stalker, an alumnus of Blue Ridge, introduced himself to the meeting as the Director of the new office of Lackawanna College in New Milford. He said the college offers academic programs in criminal justice, business administration, and various aspects of education, along with "continuing education" courses for Commercial Driving Licensing (CDL) and even a bluestone safety course as the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) refresher.

And finally, Mr. Hall commended "everybody for a job very well done," for keeping expenses under control through the end of the last fiscal year. He said the district had been anticipating a substantial shortfall of as much as $250,000 due to reassessments following last year's disastrous flooding that would have been on top of an already budgeted drawdown of the district's accumulated surplus. In the end, however, preliminary results show that revenues and expenses came out just about even, demonstrating the effort of the schools to control costs.

The next public meeting of the Blue Ridge School Board will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, August 13 in the cafeteria in the Elementary School.

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Accolades At Elk Lake
By Melinda Darrow

The July 17 Elk Lake and SCCTC school board meetings opened with a special recognition. Robert Welch, a volunteer member of the Occupational Advisory Committee for the SCCTC, was given an award in appreciation of his many years of support for the vo-tech program. Each career center in the state is allowed to submit people to be recognized by the state for their service, and Mrs. Davis shared an excerpt from the written recommendation which the school sent with his application; an oral recommendation was also given. Mr. McGrath, an employee of the Career Center, also stood up to speak highly of Mr. Welch's dependability and good advice. Mr. Welch, in turn, expressed his belief in the value of the career center, calling the program a great asset to Susquehanna County and encouraging those present to keep it going for as long as possible.

Minimum wage is presenting problems for certain district employees, as was brought up at the meeting by Molly Copeland and Stefania Kloda, two of 11 summer student workers employed this year. The girls related that according to the established policy the summer student program has been run with an incentive offered to returning, experienced workers. First year workers have been receiving minimum wage, with experienced workers receiving 75 cents above that. This additional 75 cents, the girls said, contributed to their decision to return to the job. This year, seven of the 11 workers are experienced. The problem is raised by the recent raise in minimum wage, to $7.15 an hour. It is written within the support staff contract that student workers cannot be paid more than 90% of what the support staff earns. With the new minimum wage, the experienced student bonus conflicts with this regulation.

The girls said that they knew the board might not be able to do anything about it, but asked them to please consider the matter. Mrs. Heed, a member of the support staff, pointed out that the students are asking for 75 cents, when the support staff is only receiving 69 cents extra with the minimum wage increase. In this vein students stand a chance of making more than full-time staff. The board thanked the ladies for bringing the matter to their attention and agreed to talk about the issue. Mr. Emmerich asked them, however, that the student workers please bear with them as matters are worked out, as the minimum wage has made two jumps this year.

The district's summer program received parental praise at the meeting. It was later referenced again as a success. The program started out with only 12 or 13 students in it this summer, but has grown during the summer.

Dr. Bush reported receipt of the unofficial PSSA scores. The district made the Annual Yearly Progress goals for the fourth consecutive year. This year the district was assessed in Math and Reading in grades 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 11. Next year science will be included. The requirements are slated to continue to go up (though not every year) until 2014, by which time the plan calls for 100% of students to meet AYP standards.

A potential new physical education program was revealed at the meeting as well. North East Sports contacted Mrs. Anderson in the Phys. Ed. department regarding a one-day kayaking program they run. The district is looking to participate in this, as a sport which could be used not only for recreation but as a means of water safety education, etc. The students could perhaps begin learning in the pool, and then gradually move to other bodies of water.

The district received notification of a grant, $321,449, slated to be used for the Title One program. The majority of the money is planned to go to the Reading area. It may be used to pay for benefits, consultant services for staff development, etc.

Mrs. Davis also spoke of a $50,000 grant which the SCCTC will be utilizing to bring consultants for educator training about incorporating numeracy and literacy into the curriculum. It will be part of ACT 80 and in-services.

Three personnel hirings were approved at the meeting. Mary Trently has been hired as a school psychologist, Stephen Reinhart was hired to fill the Building Trades II position vacated by Mr. Regal, and Ryan Kiper was appointed as the golf coach.

Near the end of the Elk Lake meeting Mr. Sible made a motion that the board enter into negotiations with Dr. Bush for a new contract, as his is nearing its end. The motion was approved.

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Hallstead Discusses Workmen’s Comp.
 By Barbara Whitehead

Josh Kilmer of Kilmer Insurance was present at the July 19 meeting of the Hallstead Boro Council to answer some questions about the boro’s workmen’s compensation insurance, which had risen dramatically over the last two years. Mr. Kilmer explained that workmen’s comp. is controlled by the state, which uses several factors to determine a municipality’s rate. The state considers the frequency of claims, as well as the severity of any claims, and uses a five-year “snapshot” to determine the rate, which means that it doesn’t necessarily matter if a municipality has only had one large claim against it, whatever activity that has taken place in the previous five years is what is considered when the rate is fixed. In Hallstead’s case, there was a claim dating from 2004 when a tree fell on a member of the volunteer fire company. While the claim may not have been considered a large one by a large city, it is considered a large one for a boro the size of Hallstead.

Mr. Kilmer was asked if the boro’s rate can go higher than it is at present; he said that there is a cap in the increments in which it is raised. In other words, it can only go up so much at one time. The recent increases should be the last the boro sees for awhile, he expects that the rate should start going down.

Mr. Kilmer was asked if it would be advisable for the boro to just pay any minor claims that come along, so that they would not be used “against” the boro in determining whether rates should be raised. Mr. Kilmer said that the boro does have the prerogative to pay a minor claim on its own and not turn it in, but he would advise against it because if any complications arose from what had initially been a minor incident, it could come back to “haunt” them.

In other business, the same two residents who had been present at last month’s meeting were present. The first had addressed council with some concerns about the process for obtaining building permits and some complaints about COG, which handles building inspections and permits for the boro. The resident had put in a pool, a deck and a fence without first obtaining the necessary permits from COG. COG had indicated to council that they would be willing to work with the resident, providing that the necessary paperwork was filed and the accompanying fees paid. The resident and his wife were at the meeting to protest being served with notice that a court hearing has been scheduled where a fine may be levied at a cost of $1,000 per day (for 23 days), the period during which the work proceeded without the necessary permits. Council president Michelle Giangrieco said that it was her understanding that COG had notified the resident on May 14 that permits were required for the work being done, and that there was a time limit during which the permit would need to be applied for. The resident and his wife asserted that there was nothing in any of the paperwork they received indicating that there was a time limit involved, and that they felt that they had received council’s assurance that they need only complete the necessary paperwork and pay the fees involved and the matter would be resolved. They said that on at least one occasion they had contacted COG and had not received a reply. They also felt that it was unfair that they received notice of the court hearing the day following the last council meeting, after which they had reason to believe that all would be resolved if the necessary paperwork was filed and the fees paid.

At least one council member was not happy at this latest turn of events, and suggested that the boro withdraw from COG. He also suggested that council contact COG and request that the court hearing be canceled, as the residents were not given a deadline date by which the permit had to be applied for. Another council member asked, if the boro withdraws from COG, who would it use for building inspections? State code mandates that a certified inspector be used for any building inspection; hiring a private inspector could cost more (to the homeowner) than COG charges.

The second resident had asked council for help in finding documentation as to the ownership of a strip of property that had been intended to be a road that had never been built; it would have been Fifth St. Ownership of the property, about thirty feet wide by a half-mile long, was not clear. There were some claims that the boro had owned it at one time, and other claims that it had been deeded back to the original owners. But, none of the deeds had ever been recorded, so at this point in time just who owns it is not clear. If the property is intended as a fire lane and the boro does own it, it would have to stay the property of the boro.

Council did research the matter, but had been unable to find any documentation in past meeting minutes as to the disposition of the property in question. They suggested that the resident go back to her attorney and request a title search to determine just who does, in fact, own it.

Another resident asked that council send letters to a neighbor of hers about where he has been parking his vehicles. Ms. Giangrieco said that she has been keeping an eye on the area, and did not feel that a letter was warranted.

Electric service will shortly be hooked up at the Route 11 park. The concrete has been poured and the bathrooms are in the process of going up and the basketball court will be put in shortly. Bids will be put out for topsoil, after which it will be seeded. There is still some debris that needs to be burned; council will check with the fire department to get an idea of when they will conduct a controlled burn (they are awaiting a permit from the state). A special meeting will be held on August 2 to open bids for playground equipment. The date was chosen so that the equipment could be in place by the beginning of September.

A list of tasks for maintenance supervisor Brink was compiled; items include cleaning and mulching the area near the back door of the boro building; painting the slide, bench and table at the Chase Ave. park to cover graffiti; clearing the sidewalks under the viaduct; clearing storm water grates and intersections of debris.

A motion carried to get prices for pipes for drainage work on Pine Hill and to proceed with the best one. A motion carried to accept a price quote from ProSeal for work on Pine St.

The ballfield was the subject of an in-depth discussion. A pavilion had been put up by a local Boy Scout as part of his Eagle Scout project. Blue Ridge school had planned to put in a concrete pad and tables, but the work had been delayed due to flood damage. In the meantime, it was noted that some people are using the pavilion to park their vehicles during games.

A motion carried to authorize Joey Franks to attend the next Blue Ridge School Board meeting as the boro’s representative to discuss a proposal to improve the park. If the school is amenable, the proposal is for the school to replace either the concession stand or the dugouts, and the boro would see to replacement of the other.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday, August 16, 7 p.m. in the boro building.

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Courthouse Report
Compiled By P. Jay Amadio


First Liberty Bank & Trust Co. to Kevin F. Ives, RR1, Friendsville, Grace M. Ives, in Choconut Township for $46,000.

Peter T. Baumann, Mary A. Butler to Joseph A. Applegate, RR3, Susquehanna, Annette E. Applegate, in Susquehanna for $52,500.

Barbara D. Carey to William Visinski, New Egypt, NJ, Susan E. Visinski, in Springville Township for $69,900.

William R. Vincent, Cheryl Ann Vincent to Wayne Harrison, Equinunk, Mary Harrison, in Choconut Township for $185,000.

Robert A. Wilbur to Steven Lee Fish, RR1, Hallstead, in Liberty Township for $40,000.

F&T LTD to F&T of Brackney LLC, RR2, Brackney, in Silver Lake Township for one dollar.

Michael P. Brotzman, Jennifer M. Bevan to Herbert C. Bevan, Jr., Meshoppen, Christina Bevan, in Middletown Township for $35,391.

Heather L. Wierzbicki (nbm) Heather L. Wierzbicki, Mark M. Walters to Brandon Radzerk, RR1, Uniondale, Marisa F. Kilmer, in Clifford Township for $125,000.

Joseph F. Stack to Paul R. Gustin, Preston Park, Linda J. Gustin, in Thompson Borough for $164,825.

Helen G. Amrein to Helen G. Amrein, RR2, Susquehanna, John A. Amrein III, Judy M. Manning, Justin D. Amrein, in Borough of Lanesboro for one dollar.

Michael R. Cobb to Michael R. Cobb, Montrose, Loretta Cobb, in Rush Township for one dollar.

Marcella Ransom to Ramon Acevedo, RR1, Hop Bottom, Doris Garcia Acevedo, Jesse Daniel Acevedo, Elisa Adanis Acevedo, in Lenox Township for $31,000.

Joseph J. Svecz, Judith A. Svecz to Judith A. Svecz, RR2, Union Dale, in Herrick Township for one dollar.

Judy Svecz, Joseph J. Svecz to Judy Svecz, RR2, Union Dale, in Herrick Township for one dollar.

Joseph J. Svecz, Jr., Judy Svecz to Judy Svecz, RR2, Union Dale, in Herrick Township for one dollar.

Joseph T. Diegel, Kathleen Forester to Kirk F. Dreimann, New Milford, Marian M. Dreimann, in Liberty Township for $145,000.

Kirk F. Dreimann, Marian M. Dreimann to Thorsten E. Hatfield, Melissa M. Hatfield, in New Milford Township for $268,000.

William J. Williams, Nancy Williams to John Lipko, RR1, Union Dale, Daphne J. Lipko, in Gibson Township for $200,000.

Daniel L. Botts, Diane M. Botts to Michael V. Sellitto, Susquehanna, Nicole A. Sellitto, in Lanesboro for $74,000.

Daniel J . Keller, Jr., Dolores M . Keller to Joseph Dudziec , Bensalem, in Herrick Township for $78,000.

Irene Welch to Margo E. Benjamin, RR1, Hallstead, Ernest W. Benjamin III, in Great Bend Township for one dollar.

Timothy D. Yonkin, Wanda R. Yonkin to Wanda R. Yonkin, RR5, Montrose, in Jessup Township for one dollar.

Susquehanna Community School District to William D. Iveson, Susquehanna, Sara Iveson, in Susquehanna for one dollar.

William A. Stock, William F. Stock to William A. Stock, RD1, New Milford, Cheryl Bradeis, in New Milford Township for one dollar.

Ronald J. Powers, Rita Powers to Michael W. Russell, RR2, Brackney, Debra A. Russell, in Bridgewater Township for one dollar.

Margaret L. O'Rourke, Lawrence J. O'Rourke (estate, aka), Lawrence J. O'Rourke III, to Margaret L. O'Rourke, RR4, Montrose, in Rush Township for one dollar.

Frank Henry Hurysh (estate, aka) Frank Hurysh (estate) to Lawrence T. O’Reilly, RR1, Friendsville, Thomas J. O’Reilly, in Auburn Township for $101,000.

Donald J. Cole, Norma Cole to Richard Donald Cole, RR2, Union Dale, Amy Cole, in Gibson Township for one dollar.

Peoples National Bank to TNT I Limited Partnership, RR3, Montrose, in Borough of Lanesboro for $40,000.

Reginald R. Wondoloski, Carreen Wondoloski to Anthony McNeilly, Holland, PA, Wendi McNeilly, in Jackson Township for $65,000.

Ivan Guzman, Mary Ann Guzman to First Baptist Church of Susquehanna, Susquehanna, in Susquehanna for $29,000.

Michele L. Jones to Wayne E. Jones, Jr., Vestal, NY, in Thompson Township for zero dollars.

Melvin E. Wolfe, Jr., Angelie M. Wolfe to Anelia M. Wolfe, Hallstead, in Hallstead Borough for one dollar.

Thomas Petroski, Lisa M. Petroski to Thomas Petroski, RR2, Thompson, in Gibson Township for one dollar.

Allen A. Oswald, Jean M. Oswald, Matthew A. Oswald, Abigail Oswald to Lawrence K. Churm, RR1, Montrose, Alexis A. Churm, in Choconut Township for $16,000.

William D. Iveson, Sara C. Iveson to Michael Iveson, Susquehanna, Kelly Iveson, in Susquehanna for one dollar.


Bryant E. Kasson and Vanessa L. Garrison, both of RR1, Springville.

Daniel Joseph Anthony and Linda Darlene Spinola, both of Brooklyn Township.

Clint Jerod Long of Friendsville and Hillary Beth Gesford of RR6, Montrose.

Robert Lee Birtch and Susan Marie Zehyer, both of Meshoppen.

Daniel D. Albert III and Amanda Marie Bennett, both of Kingsley.

Eric Stone of RR1, Susquehanna and Kelly L. Drake of New Milford.

Joseph J. Haney and Linda S. Weatherby, both of Forest City.


Kristina Marie Saunders vs. Kevin R. Olahm, both of RR1, Montrose. Married, August 28, 2004.

Lori A. Groover of Harford Township vs. Donald L. Groover of New Milford. Married, March 26, 1988.

Judy A. Svecz vs. Joseph J. Svecz, both of RR2, Union Dale. Married, June 3, 1978.

Sharon E. Acker of New Milford vs. Ronnie D. Acker of Thomasville, NC.

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Gibson Barracks Report
Compiled By Melinda Darrow


On June 8 and June 11, an unknown woman stole purses from five women while they shopped at Price Chopper and ABC Markets in Montrose. On July 18, after News Watch 16 aired a story about these incidents, several calls came in regarding the identification of the suspect. The suspect, who was identified as Christina Perry (aged 28) of Forest City, arrived at PSP Gibson to turn herself in. Perry was arrested and arraigned before District Justice Gene Franklin in Clifford PA. Perry was remanded to the Susquehanna Correctional Facility in lieu of $25,000 bail. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for July 23 at District Court 34-3-01 in Montrose PA.


July 18 – Pennsylvania State Police at Gibson announced the arrest of Robin Grow, aged 48, of Horseheads, NY. He is accused of robbing the PennStar Bank in New Milford on January 26, 2006. Through a joint investigation with the New York State Police, troopers were able to link Grow to the crime scene via DNA evidence from a wig he wore as a disguise during the commission of the crime. Grow discarded the disguise as he fled the scene, and was it was later recovered by troopers searching the area. Grow is charged with Robbery, Theft by Unlawful Taking or Disposition and Receiving Stolen Property. He was transported back from New York after being picked up by New York State Police. Grow was to be arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Peter Janicelli of New Milford.


On July 17, at around 11:35 p.m., John Giddings of the Union Dale area became disruptive, and drove upon the property of Mark Kowalewski of the Forest City area without authorization. Charges are pending at this time for violations of PACC and PA VC.


On July 12 at around 11:40 p.m., Flying J reported the occurrence of a drive-off worth $723.01 of diesel fuel. On July 9, at around 11:18 p.m., another was reported worth $919.20.


On July 13, at around 5:32 a.m., Rachael Chaffee of the Newfield, NY area, drove off with $34.30 worth of gas from the Liberty Truck Plaza in Harford Twp. Chaffee was located and returned to the scene.


On July 16, at around 8:25 a.m., an unknown man drove off with $70.00 worth of gas from the Montrose Pump N Pantry. The perpetrator is described as being a white male, approximately 5'9”- 6'0” tall, and 180-210 lbs. He looked to be in his late 50's to early 60's, with dark/gray hair. He was wearing jeans, a gray shirt, and a red hat. He drove east on SR 706 in a red pickup truck.


On July 14 unknown perpetrator(s) used a BB gun to shoot a side window out of a 2004 Thomas School Bus belonging to Grisafi Brothers Transportation Inc. of Montrose. The incident occurred on SR 2011, Old Country Road in Bridgewater Twp.


Between the 9th and 12th of July unknown perpetrator(s) forcibly entered the Dressler residence on Route 92, South of Burman Collision. Some jewelry and rolled coins were taken. A detached garage was also broken into, but it is undetermined if anything was taken from the garage.


PSP Gibson is investigating a case of Criminal Mischief and Criminal Trespass at the Rushboro General Store in Auburn Twp. One or more persons smashed a window and entered the store, then fled without taking anything. The incident occurred overnight between the 10th and 11th of July.


It was recently reported that in early July someone broke into the residence of Ryan Millard of Hallstead, during the nighttime.


On the fourth of July, between 7:15 p.m. and 10:30 someone broke into the house of John Turner, Jr. and Sarah Briggs in Thompson Borough and stole their pit bull.


On July 19 unknown perpetrator(s) put a firework in the mailbox of Sherry Decker of New Milford, causing the mail to be scorched.


Between the 29th and 30th of June unknown perpetrator(s) used a marker to write on the gazebo benches in New Milford Borough, and broke low-hanging tree branches.


On July 3 a crash occurred as Mark Sherman of Susquehanna was cutting grass along SR1015 in Lanesboro. Sherman was driving a 2001 Case 50C tractor, owned by the PA. Dept. of Transportation. Sherman was traveling across an embankment off the east berm of SR 1015, just south of SR 1017 in Lanesboro Borough, when the incline became too great and the vehicle rolled over. Sherman was wearing a seatbelt and sustained only minor injury.


On the 8th of July Kevin Stone of Montrose was traveling North along SR 3029 at around 1 a.m. He drifted off the road to the right, after falling asleep, and awoke at the edge of the creek. Citations were issued.


On July 7 an accident happened at the intersection of SR 106, Emets Rd., and Tingley St. in Harford Twp. The incident occurred as Martin Shauger was driving a 2002 Kawasaki Ninja east on SR 106. Aaron Philips was driving a Ford Ranger truck traveling north on Empets Rd. at that time. Philips had stopped at a stop sign, and was going to proceed across SR 106 to Tingley street. The vehicles impacted in the center of SR 106. Shauger suffered severe injury to his right arm; he was wearing a helmet and was transported to CMC hospital.


On July 9 an accident took place on SR0029 in Franklin Twp. The incident occurred as a Dodge Dakota driven by Nick Carey of Montrose was stopped in the roadway, in the midst of making a left-hand turn. A Mercury Mountaneer driven by Amy Legg of Montrose was stopped behind him. A third vehicle, a Jeep Cherokee driven by Richard Coy of Montrose, came upon the scene and applied his brakes and swerved to the right to avoid striking Legg. This attempt failed, and his vehicle struck the tail end of Legg's vehicle before veering left and traveling North in the Southbound lane. He then struck the left front fender of the turning vehicle driven by Carey, causing it to spin in a clockwise motion before coming to rest in the northbound lane facing East. The Cherokee continued traveling north on SR 0029, exited the roadway, and came to rest on the shoulder facing north. Coy was cited for careless driving. Two of the people involved in this accident were not wearing seat-belts and sustained minor head injuries.


On July 6 a fatal crash took place on SR 267 in Choconut Township. The incident occurred as Jackie Viteritto of New Milford, PA pulled out of a driveway into the path of a fully loaded tri-axle dump truck. The truck, which was owned by Lopke Trucking, struck Viteritto's vehicle on the driver's door area, killing her. The investigation continues; updated information will be sent.


On July 7, at around 1:34 a.m., Adam Hill and Josh Kulick of Eynon and Waymart respectively, were traveling on Church Street in Clifford Twp. with their high beams on. There was another vehicle in front of them, which appeared to be a light blue Subaru Forester with a partial PA registration of “GH”. The unknown vehicle pulled over, then pulled in behind the victims' vehicle. Hill stuck his arm out the passenger side window, extending his middle finger to the people in the other car, which proceeded to pass the victims' car and cut them off. Hill got out of his car, and started to yell. The other car then struck he and Kulick, before getting back into their vehicle and taking off, stating, “Don't mess with Carbondale.”


On an unknown date during the month of July, at an unknown time, the unknown operator of a green Honda drove off Phillips Road in Springville Twp. and struck a concrete silo belonging to Walter Brooks. He or she then drove away, failing to notify Brooks of the damage to his property.

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COG Hears “Go Joe” Plans
By Barbara Whitehead

County Commissioner Roberta Kelly stopped in to observe the proceedings at the July 17 COG meeting. She asked about the status of the feasibility study currently underway by DCED regarding shared municipal police services; it is still a work in progress.

Most of the members’ questions for Mrs. Kelly involved WNEP’s “Go Joe” fundraising campaign. Weatherman Joe Snedeker makes an annual bicycle ride to raise funds for St. Joseph’s Center in Scranton, and this year his trip will take him through Montrose on Thursday, July 26. Mrs. Kelly said that Annette Rogers, Montrose Boro’s secretary, has been hard at work organizing a street fair to welcome Mr. Snedeker. He will be in the boro from 4:30 to 7:30 that evening, during which time a check presentation will be made from area youth who have been going door-to-door collecting funds. A local car club will be present, and two ladder trucks from the local fire company will display a flag at the site. Several county children who benefit from the services at St. Joseph’s will be present, and Mr. Snedeker will be given a key to the boro as well as a proclamation from Commissioner Kelly. The entire event will be televised on WNEP. It promises to be a memorable occasion.

Correspondence included an invitation to participate in Peoples National Bank’s annual golf tournament on August 7 at Stonehenge Golf Course.

The building committee is still working on possible sites for a new building.

There were some questions about purchasing of goods demonstrated at the last two meetings, spill absorbents and grease, particularly whether COG would be acting as an agent for purchase, or if the municipality could contact Certified Laboratories directly and receive the benefit of a quantity price through participation in COG. One member suggested that COG draw up a document of understanding that members would be given a volume discount price, but that they would deal directly with Certified for any purchases.

Many of COG’s members are also members of the Northern Tier Coalition. The coalition is currently developing a comprehensive plan which includes a proposed zoning ordinance. One of COG’s members brought the topic up for discussion, particularly the plan’s estimated cost to support the administrative efforts for zoning. He asked if the number of UCC permits issued by a municipality would determine the cost for participation; that could present a problem, as the number of permits issued from year to year varies. His concern was that the estimated cost to municipalities ignored the revenue from permits. Another member noted that the formula used to decide on the cost would be determined by the coalition, not by COG. COG’s office manager, Karen Trynoski, explained further that there would be a lot of administration costs involved at first for a zoning officer. Grant money would be available to fund the officer’s salary at first, but as that funding would only be for startup costs, the permit revenue was not figured in so that revenue could build up over time to cover the officer’s salary once the startup grant funding is used up. It was agreed that the topic would be one for further discussion at the following Thursday’s coalition meeting. In the meantime, COG will keep zoning on their monthly agenda, as a subcommittee report line item under Codes.

The sewage committee reported some out-of-the-ordinary goings-on, where investigation of complaints had resulted in a confrontation with the property owners, who had threatened physical violence (firearms were mentioned). The committee felt that its members should be aware that situations like this sometimes arise and asked for some input as to how they should be handled. It was agreed that they should be handled on a case-by-case basis; in this case, the property owners had agreed to have the township supervisors attend a site meeting with the SEO present, and it was agreed that having a county deputy sheriff present would not be necessary. As one member pointed out, a property owner could choose to cooperate (or not). It has been the practice for two SEOs to investigate initial complaints and meet with the homeowner; this policy will not change.

When a municipality is in the process of enacting an ordinance, there are specific legal guidelines that must be followed. For instance, a separate legal notice must be published for each ordinance being considered. Not being aware of this, Friendsville Boro had published a single notice of intent to adopt three ordinances, including one regulating retaining tanks, and one pertaining to on-lot sewage system permits. After a short discussion, a motion carried to approve Mrs. Trynoski’s offer to help see that the ordinances are re-advertised correctly.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday, August 21, 7 p.m. at their offices in New Milford Boro.

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