Please visit our kind sponsors
The Susquehanna County Commissioners met for the second time, as a unit , on Wednesday, January 23, with a full house.
The meetings, previously held in the Emergency Management Conference Room, had been switched to the Commissioners Office in the Court House, as well as changing the meeting time from 10 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.
Not only did the switch of meeting places meet with disapproval, the time change as well ruffled feathers of taxpayers. Although a total head count was not "taken," approximately 35 people were in the office, packed like sardines, while another 8-10 taxpayers awaited in the outside office with no place to sit.
It was announced that the upcoming meetings will be held back at the EMA Conference Room, at 9 a.m., from now on.
Two employees were recognized for their "Employee Years of Service": Michelle Estabrook, Register and Recorder’s Office for 20 years and Joseph Barry, Probation, for five years of service.
Fifteen bids regarding the demolition of flood buyout properties were opened and set for review, to be reported at the next meeting.
Bids for HVAC were opened as well.
Motions for ratification of the termination of employees were met with many questions and concerns about Sunshine Law and proper procedure.
Gerry Bevan mentioned that he thought the commissioners were supposed to "work for the people, not the party."
Commissioner Giangrieco stated that the actions were based on information from the labor attorney, Atty. Scott Blissman.
Solicitor for the county will be Michael Gathany, Laura Watts was promoted to Acting Voter Registrar, and Richard Kamansky appointed to Acting Chief Assessor. Please note the words "acting."
Kamansky's salary was discussed at length, with a final motion to set it at $42,500, as per Giangrieco, seconded by Warren.
Job descriptions were discussed for the above positions, as well as changing them to meet newly created positions and the dropping of others.
Protocol use to be, when someone spoke at a meeting, they would politely stand, give their name and where they are from, to identify themselves to Commissioners and the audience. This was not the case at the meeting on January 23. People spoke on top of people, while the meeting was being conducted, and just uttered comments whenever they liked. Not to say it was "out of hand," but clearly not controlled, as commissioners themselves interjected comments throughout the proceedings. People neglected to identify themselves, and the audience was trying to follow the actions that actually "were" carried out.
Business-wise, a lot has happened: the Assistant Chief Clerk, Dan Walter, was terminated, due (per se) to letters from heads of departments and the Commissioners.
There was a bit of bustle here, as the question regarding the recent terminations made were due to the "party" of choice.
Although Commissioners offered no explanation: Mike Giangrieco had no knowledge what party any of the terminated were affiliated with, neither did Leon Allen, and Mary Ann Warren stated that she had initiated the letters and it didn't matter (what affiliate), they were doing (what needed to be done?).
Interjected here were questions regarding violations of the Sunshine Law by Jim Jennings, and numerous mumblings from the audience about procedures and the Sunshine Law.
Commissioner Allen motioned to appoint The Susquehanna Emergency Service Advisory Committee as follows: chairman – Jerry Fives; Fire/Rescue – NW Jerry Fives, NE Robert Thatcher, SW Charlie Daly, SE Trent Turner; EMS – Jim Krupinski; Police – Sheriff Lance Benedict. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Giangrieco.
Eleanor Kurosky and John Benscoter were re-appointed to the Agriculture Land Preservation Board for a three-year period beginning January 1, 2008 and ending December 31, 2010.
The Susquehanna County Local Emergency Planning Committee was also appointed.
Salary Board included setting the rate of pay for Laura Watts at $10.96 per hour as per the County Range and Rate Charge, to continue until a new Director of Elections/Voter Registrar is hired; the County Solicitor will be salaried at $22,500 – he will be at the Commissioners' "beck and call," stated Commissioner Warren.
Another motion was made to eliminate the position of Voter Registrar, effective on the date the newly restructured position of Director of Elections/Voter Registrar is filled.
The Retirement Board made a motion to set the rate of regular interest at 4% (between 4% and 5% by law) to be allowed for the member contribution account in the Susquehanna County Employee Retirement Plan for 2008. It was decided to wait until the market was stabilized to take action.
The door at the County Office Building is still not fixed correctly, and it is being handled as stated by County Chief Clerk Sylvia Beamer.
The next Commissioners meeting will be held February 13, at 9 a.m. at the County Office Building in the EMA Conference Room. Please note changes.
Following is the Susquehanna County sentencing report for January, 2008 as submitted by the county District Attorney’s office.
Robert Brennan Deon, 35, of Forest City, to 48 hours to 6 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, pay cost of prosecution, pay $500 fine, pay $100 Act 198 fee, pay $30 CAT surcharge, pay $10 EMS, attend alcohol highway safe driving school program, receive a drug and alcohol evaluation for Driving Under the Influence in Thompson Township on June 30, 2007. The defendant also received 4 months to 15 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, to run concurrent to the above sentence, pay cost of prosecution, pay restitution to victim, pay restitution to insurance company, not to have contact with the victim in this case, not to possess, transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to possess or consume controlled substance without a valid prescription, receive drug and alcohol evaluation, pay $500 fine for Unauthorized Use of an Automobile in Thompson Township on June 30, 2007.
Eric Johnson, 26, of Montrose, to 12 months probation, to run consecutive to any current probation sentence, pay $100 Act 198 fee, pay cost of prosecution, pay $2500 fine, continue with drug and alcohol counseling, not to possess, transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to enter any establishment whose sole purpose is the sale of alcohol for Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in Liberty Township on August 19, 2007.
Joseph J Nabywaniec, 58, of Binghamton, NY to 3 days to 6 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, pay cost of prosecution, pay $1,000 fine, attend alcohol highway safe driving school program, receive drug and alcohol evaluation, pay $300 Act 198 fee, pay $50 CAT surcharge, pay $10 EMS for Driving Under the Influence in Silver Lake Township on May 20, 2007.
Gerald Fletcher, 39, of Montrose, to 9 months to 36 months in a state correctional facility, credit for time served, receive mental health counseling, pay cost of prosecution, pay $200 fine, not to have contact with the victim in this case, pay $250 DNA testing fee and submit sample, not to have contact with anyone on supervision for Aggravated Assault in Bridgewater Township on December 26, 2006.
David Depue, 26, of Friendsville, 1 year probation, pay $1000 fine, pay cost of prosecution, continue to be liable for ARD cost, not to consume alcoholic beverages, receive a drug and alcohol evaluation for Selling or Furnishing Liquor or Malt or Brewed Beverages to Minors in Middletown Township on May 5, 2006. The defendant also received 72 hours to 6 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, credit for time served, pay cost of prosecution, pay $1000 fine, pay $300 Act 198 fee, pay $50 CAT surcharge, pay $10 EMS, attend alcohol highway safe driving school program, receive a drug and alcohol evaluation for Driving Under the Influence in Apolacon Township on October 8, 2007.
Debra Mahoney, 40 of South Montrose, to 12 months to 24 months in a state correctional facility, pay cost of prosecution, pay $2500 fine, pay $200 CAT surcharge, pay $10 EMS, pay $300 Act 198 fee, credit for time served, receive alcohol and drug abuse counseling, receive mental health counseling, attend alcohol highway safe driving school program for repeat offenders, not to possess transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to enter any establishment whose sole purpose is the sale of alcohol, not to possess weapons, perform 25 hours community service for Driving Under the Influence in Montrose on December 1, 2007. The defendant also received 6 months to 24 months in a state correctional facility, to run concurrent to the above sentence, pay $250 fine, pay cost of prosecution, perform 50 hours community service, receive drug and alcohol counseling, receive mental health counseling, not to possess, transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to enter any establishment whose sole purpose is the sale of alcohol, not to possess weapons for Simple Assault in Springville on July 22, 2007.
Sean D Murphy, 31, of Lanesboro, to 45 days to 18 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, credit for time served, pay cost of prosecution, pay $100 Act 198 fee, pay $500 fine, attend alcohol highway safe driving school program for repeat offenders, perform 25 hours community service, receive drug and alcohol evaluation, not to possess transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to enter any establishment whose sole purpose is the sale of alcohol, pay $100 CAT Surcharge, pay $10 EMS for Driving Under the Influence in Lanesboro Borough on July 27, 2007.
Mark Robert Wilcox, 43, of Forest City, to 6 months to 23 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, credit for time served, followed by 5 years’ probation served consecutive, pay $1,000 fine, pay cost of prosecution, pay $250 DNA testing fee and submit sample, not to possess any weapons, pay restitution to the victim’s insurance company and the victim, 11 p.m. curfew, continue with AA program, not to possess, transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to enter any establishment whose sole purpose is the sale of alcohol, not to have contact with anyone on supervision for Theft by Unlawful Taking in Clifford on January 8, 2007. The defendant also received 6 months to 23 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, to run concurrent to the above sentence, credit for time served, pay $250 fine, pay restitution to the victim’s insurance company and the victim, 11 p.m. curfew, maintain employment, pay cost of prosecution, not to have contact with anyone on supervision for Criminal Mischief in Clifford on January 8, 2007.
Zeyn Lane, 40, of Montrose, to 7 months to 23 ½ months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, credit for time served, pay restitution to the victim in this case, pay restitution to the victim’s insurance company, pay $500 fine, pay cost of prosecution, pay $250 DNA testing fee and submit sample for Receiving Stolen Property in Lenox Township on June 12, 2007. The defendant also received 24 months probation to run concurrent to the above sentence, pay restitution to the victim in this case, pay cost of prosecution, pay $250 fine for Institutional Vandalism in Bridgewater Township on October 2, 2007
Charles Edward Schumaker, 56, of Montrose, to 12 months to 36 months in a state correctional facility, to run concurrent to any current sentence being served, pay $500 fine, pay cost of prosecution, not to have contact with anyone under the age of 18, receive a psychological evaluation for Failure to Comply with Registration of Sexual Offender Requirements in Montrose on January 24, 2000.
Charles Thomas Perry, 26, of South Montrose, to 36 months to 72 months in a state correctional facility, to run concurrent to all sentences, followed by 5 years consecutive probation, pay cost of prosecution, pay $750 fine, pay restitution to the victim in this case, not to have contact with the victim in this case, not to have contact with anyone on supervision for the following merged counts: Burglary, Theft by Unlawful Taking, Theft by Deception and Receiving Stolen Property, all of which took place in Great Bend Township on September 11, 2007. The defendant also received 9 months to 36 months, to run concurrent to all sentences for Criminal Conspiracy/Theft by Deception in Great Bend Township on September 11, 2007.
The defendant also received 18 months to 5 years in a state correctional facility, credit for time served, pay restitution to the victim, pay cost of prosecution, pay $250 DNA testing fee and submit sample, community service, not to have contact with anyone on supervision, not to possess weapons, receive a psychological evaluation, pay $500 fine for the following merged counts: Burglary and Receiving Stolen Property in Susquehanna Borough on August 1, 2007. The defendant also received 11 months to 3 years in a state correctional facility, to run concurrent to the above sentence, pay cost of prosecution, pay $250 fine, not to have contact with the victim in this case, not to have contact with anyone on supervision for Criminal Trespass in Susquehanna Borough on August 1, 2007.
The defendant received 18 months to 5 years in a state correctional facility, to run concurrent to the above sentence, pay cost of prosecution, pay $500 fine for each count, not to have contact with the victims in this case, pay restitution to victims for 2 counts of Burglary in Lanesboro on July 20, 2007. The defendant also received 11 months to 36 months in a state correctional facility to run concurrent to the above sentences, pay cost of prosecution, pay $250 fine for each count, not to have contact with the victims in this case, not to possess any weapons for 4 counts of Criminal Trespass in Lanesboro on July 20, 2007.
Timothy Eugene Mayes, 20, of Hallstead, to 90 days in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, upon good behavior last 45 days may be served home confinement, credit for time served, pay cost of prosecution, pay $1,500 fine, pay $100 Act 198 fee, pay $200 CAT Surcharge, pay $10 EMS, attend alcohol highway safe driving school program for repeat offenders, continue with AA, not to enter any establishment whose sole purpose is the sale of alcohol, not to have contact with anyone on supervision, maintain employment for Driving Under the Influence in Hallstead Borough on September 1, 2007.
Tracy Lynn Ramsay, 26, of Montrose, to 15 months probation, pay cost of prosecution, $100 Act 198 fee, continue treatment with Dr. Lattimore, pay $250 DNA testing fee and submit sample, pay $300 fine, not to possess, transport or consume alcoholic beverages for Criminal Attempt/Possession of a Controlled Substance in Montrose on April 11, 2007.
Albert Michael Harvey, 32, of Springville, to 5 months to 18 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, pay $250 DNA testing fee and submit sample, perform 50 hours community service, pay $500 fine, pay cost of prosecution, not to have contact with the victim in this case, not to have contact with anyone under the age of 18 for Indecent Assault in Springville on August 19, 2007.
Gary Robert Hanyon, 40 of Jermyn, PA to 80 days to 12 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, credit for time served, pay $500 fine, pay cost of prosecution, not to have contact with the victim in this case, receive a mental health evaluation, not to possess firearms, receive anger management counseling for Simple Assault in Lenox Township on October 7, 2007.
Bernard T Smith, 44, of Susquehanna, to 5 days to 6 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, pay $300 fine, pay cost of prosecution, pay $100 CAT surcharge, pay $10 EMS, pay $100 Act 198 fee, complete alcohol highway safe driving school program, receive a drug and alcohol evaluation for Driving Under the Influence in Susquehanna on September 8, 2007. The defendant also received 1 year probation to run concurrent with the above sentence, not to posses, transport or consume alcoholic beverages, pay $250 fine, pay cost of prosecution, perform 25 hours community service, receive a drug and alcohol evaluation.
Joel Thompson, 25, of Montrose, to 3 months to 18 months in Susquehanna County Correctional Facility, with credit for time served, pay $350 fine, pay cost of prosecution, receive a drug and alcohol evaluation, not to possess, transport or consume alcoholic beverages, not to possess firearms, 10 p.m. curfew, receive an anger management evaluation, receive a mental health evaluation for Simple Assault in New Milford Township on December 12, 2007.
Chris Snee remembers being at home in Montrose, watching Super Bowls with his father and brothers.
Snee was beginning the same tradition and would have been in New Jersey this Sunday with his wife and two young sons, with plenty of food out to be enjoyed, taking in the Super Bowl as a family.
Snee and his New York Giants teammates, however, disrupted those plans.
Montrose native Chris Snee and the New York Giants will be heading to Arizona to play in the Super Bowl this Sunday.
Instead, the Montrose graduate will spend Super Bowl Sunday in Arizona as one of the key players in the Giants' quest to ruin an unbeaten season by the New England Patriots.
Snee has seen the Giants succeed in this setting before. His first Super Bowl memories are of watching the Giants upset the Buffalo Bills, 20-19, in Super Bowl XXV January 27, 1991 when Scott Norwood could not connect on a 47-yard field goal with four seconds left.
"Probably the one I remember most is the Bills-Giants," Snee said in a telephone interview last week. "It's the first one I remember.
"It's a great first Super Bowl to remember because it was such a great game."
Snee was growing up as a Chicago Bears fan, but in a house full of Giants fans he spent the day cheering for his "second" team.
Now, it is Snee's presence that is converting people in Montrose into Giants fans.
"In my lifetime, with the game of football, I haven't ever been a fan," said Tom Lucenti, who coached Snee at Montrose. "I want to see a good game. If it's two unknown teams, but it's a good football game, I'll watch it.
"Now, I'm a Giants fan. It's the first time I've ever felt that I had a team I wanted to root for to win every week. If he ever got traded, I'd root for that team. He's my guy."
Much of Montrose views Snee as their guy this week.
Signs wishing Snee well are visible all over town.
According to Scouts Inc., it is reasonable to expect Snee to be a big part of Super Bowl XXXXII. When Scouts Inc. ranked the 106 players who will play in the Super Bowl for ESPN.com, it ranked Snee as the 10th best player in the game.
Although Snee fell short of his first Pro Bowl appearance when he was named as an alternate for the National Football League's all-star game for the third straight year, the fourth-year pro is highly regarded as one of the biggest reasons the Giants can control the ball on the ground and protect quarterback Eli Manning.
The Giants have run the ball all year, but with Manning's improved effectiveness, they arrive at the Super Bowl coming off three straight road playoff wins. Snee thinks the team is playing at its best right now.
"I think we are," he said. "To go on the road and beat Tampa Bay, then the top two seeds in the NFC, you have to be on top of your game. We went out and won those games. They were not handed to us."
The run, in which the Giants ran their streak of road wins to 10, seemed unlikely early in the season.
The Giants were 0-2 and trailing by two touchdowns at halftime in Washington when they turned their season around.
"We had our backs against the wall at Washington, down 17-3 at the half," Snee said. "We came out in the second half fighting for our season and we kept our composure."
The Giants rallied for a 24-17 victory and, although they have stumbled a little since, they were headed in a different direction. When they lost, 38-35, to New England in the regular-season finale, the Giants threatened to ruin the perfect season and showed they can compete with a Patriots team that is trying to make history as the first to ever go 19-0 in the NFL.
Snee said it is not so much the team match-ups that are important from the December 29 game.
"It helps in a sense of individual match-ups," Snee said. "What happened in the one-on-one match-ups gives you an idea what to expect.
"As far as the whole team, it should be a whole different level from that game. You expect everyone to take it up a notch."
The best pro football has to offer is the expectation of every Super Bowl. Snee said he is thankful for the support from home and for the chance to see what he can do on a day when more than 100 million people are watching on televisions around the world.
"I'm thankful for every opportunity I've had," Snee said. "It's come from a lot of hard work and good advice, and maybe a little luck."
Richard Paul (AKA) Richard P. and Nina L. Robinson to Richard P. and Nina L. Robinson, in Liberty Township for one dollar.
Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. (By Atty) to Carlton L. and Catherine L. Kwan, in Liberty Township for $76,000.00.
William D. and Kristen L. Kehs to Tammy L. Norton, in New Milford Township for $270,000.00.
Albert H. and Doris J. Stickney to Bernard M. and Claire G. Griffin, in Choconut Township for $145,000.00.
Yvonne M. Zeck to Lanesboro Borough, in Lanesboro Borough for $75,000.00.
Anne M. and Joyce Hatala to Andrew J. Ewonishon, in Herrick Township for $2,000.00.
Donald W. and Heather M. Diehl to Heather M. Diehl, in Brooklyn Township for one dollar.
John, Sr. and Florence J. Kowalewski to John, Jr. and David Kowalewski, in Clifford Township for $25,000.00.
Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (By POA) to Marisol Rosales, in Forest City for $14,900.00.
Arnold B. and Deborah S. Caddick to Jay B. and Susan A. Benner, in Forest Lake Township for $405,000.00.
Christopher B. and Mary Theresa R. Santoro (By Trustee) to Lawrence T. O'Reilly, in Choconut Township for one dollar.
Elton R. and Tregertha L. Tyler to Elton R. Tyler, in Great Bend Township for one dollar.
David and Sharon M. Jordan to William R. and Shirley Pabst, in Liberty Township for $49,000.00.
Marie A. (Estate AKA) Marie Gesford to Kenneth E. Gall and Dora L. Rozelle, in Forest Lake Township for $65,000.00.
Shawn M. and Warren W., Jr. Avery to George and Geri Narzinsky, in New Milford Township for $17,000.00.
Lawrence M. Grasso to Dorothy M. Mallow, in Franklin Township for $48,750.00.
Ralph G. Brenneman to Pennsylvania Mineral Group LLC, in Lathrop Township for $6,615.00.
John and Marie Gleason to John and Joan Huss, in Choconut Township for $34,000.00.
Robert H. and Cynthia Crowe to Robert H. and Cynthia Crowe (Revocable Trust), in Silver Lake Township for one dollar.
William B. Anderson (Estate) to Lori A. Nagy, in Rush Township for $56,500.00.
Timothy A. Dunkailo and Tina M. Kilmer, both of Brackney.
One writer and two photographers from ESPN.com visited Montrose Area High School on January 24, to begin "The Hometown Story."
Chris Snee's High School Football Coach, Tom Lucenti takes a moment out to meet with ESPN writer, Pat Yaskinskas, to discuss Giants' Chris Snee's high school football upbringing. Adding to the information was Joe Gilhool, Athletic Director.
Photo by Carole M. Canfield
The Hometown Story will focus on Chris Snee, a 1999 graduate/football legend of MAHS, who is currently a member of the New York Giants football team. The Giants, Chris included, will be competing in the upcoming Super Bowl game.
Snee played football for Montrose, under the guidance of Coach Tom Lucenti and his coaching staff, for four years.
As part of the background story, writer Pat Yaskinskas interviewed Coach Lucenti, Montrose High School Principal Tallarico, and Assistant Principal Russell Canevari. He also spoke with Athletic Director Joseph Gilhool, as ESPN photographers Drew Hollowell and Lars Holm held a photo shoot in Mr. Lucenti's football theme ridden classroom.
According to Yaskinskas, the story could be available as early as Sunday, January 27, or as late as Tuesday, January 29. "There should be about a 3-5 day spread where the story will be available to view. You may also need to check under NFL as well, but it will be there for a few days. It is Super Bowl time, so I can’t tie it down to a specific time," the writer stated.
Yaskinskas said he had spoken with Snee's best friend, Tim Lopez, of Binghamton, NY. "I had the opportunity to interview Chris on Thursday night, and we had a long talk. It was great being back in this area, with all the excitement. Snee even has fans in Clarks Summit, who are all for him and The Giants."
In addition, they traveled to Endless Mountains Health System (Montrose Hospital) to interview Mrs. Diane Snee, Chris's proud mother.
At the hospital, they were met with balloons, signs, posters, and buttons of Snee and" The Giants."
A large number of hospital employees supported the athlete's success, with "EMHS Supports Chris Snee" tee shirts, and of course, an excited Mrs. Snee.
"I am so happy they are taking the time to get to really know Chris," Mrs. Snee said. (She also mentioned that their family will be traveling down to the Super Bowl, and they "are thrilled.")
The ESPN group followed Mrs. Snee to her home to shoot some photographs and gather more information. They will also go to The Meadowlands to meet Chris himself.
The whole town/community of Montrose is supporting our hometown hero, by placing large "Chris Snee" signs in their business and home windows. There is a sign in at least 98 percent of the windows down Public Avenue, and a lot of the businesses on the border all have the signs in front window display.
"We are really happy that here, in such a small town, everyone is going (all out) to support Chris! I think that a small town is better, because they all band together to help each other, no matter what," Mrs. Snee emphasized.
ESPN also traveled around Montrose to check out the "scenery,” signs, banners, etc. and talk to people in the community to get a full feel for "The Hometown Story!"
Reporter's note: Pat Yasinskas, writer of the Hometown Story, himself, is from the Lackawanna Trail High School District. He grew up in the Dalton area, and when asked to cover a "hometown aspect" of the Super Bowl, he looked at the roster and saw Montrose and Chris Snee, and knew he had to come here to share this opportunity with this area, close to where he grew up. He also has relatives in the area.
Because they got a new member this year, the Harford Township Board of Supervisors was allowed to reconsider its budget for 2008 during the month of January. And because newbie Garry Foltz was very interested in reviewing the budget, fearing there wouldn't be enough money to get through the year, the Supervisors did just that at their meeting on January 22. It didn't change much.
Terry Van Gorden made the motion to re-open the budget and then gave the floor to Mr. Foltz, who outlined the Supervisors' deliberations. He said the three spent "many hours . [tearing] the thing apart." He reviewed each segment of the budget, sewer, state and township, explaining what they looked at and giving the latest estimate of cash on hand that might be available by the end of 2008.
The sewer budget is expected to end the year with over $53,000. Since the Supervisors (who double as members of the Harford Sewer Authority) had already boosted revenue by declaring an increase in fees that will go into effect in April, there will be more money to work with, and to make upgrades to the sewer plant that will probably become necessary. Mr. Foltz said that the Supervisors would aggressively pursue subscribers who are behind in their payments. "We're going to go after [them]," he said.
Asked about a $3,000 engineering study proposed by the firm that operates the plant, Supervisor and township Secretary Sue Furney said that, after consulting other sources she found that it isn't unusual that such a study becomes necessary after the 12-13 years that the Harford system has been in operation. The Supervisors nevertheless drafted a letter to the operations contractor asking for a break on the cost of the study. Since the township had not received periodic written reports about the condition of the plant all along, they could not have been prepared for the major upgrades that such a study might uncover.
The state portion of the budget is funded from the "liquid fuels" subsidy paid by the state, and some modest "turnback" amounts paid by the state to municipalities that agree to take over ownership of some roads. Mr. Foltz forecast a year-end cash balance of just over $20,000 in this account. He said that rising fuel costs made him uneasy about what it would really cost to maintain the township's roads, but he said that he expected the budget to "[make] some positive changes for dust control" because the "numbers were more real." For example, the original budget allowed no money for equipment. That was changed, and the workers were polled for their first priority for equipment. As a result, the Supervisors hope to purchase a new plow.
The township part of the budget is the one that affects everyone in the township directly, because it is funded by taxes. Mr. Foltz said the Supervisors conducted an "extensive review of each line item" and are determined to "go forward, within our means [hoping] the expenses don't go out of control." They added a debt-service line to the expense budget to cover the cost of borrowing for the two major projects now in the planning stages. All of the amendments to the budget were internal, leaving the township with an estimated $23,667 left over at the end of the year. Mr. Foltz is clearly uncomfortable with such a small margin. "I don't see any way out of increasing the taxes next year," he said.
The revised budget will be advertised for about 20 days, after which it will be formally adopted.
In other business, each of the Supervisors signed a letter addressed to the township's insurers expressing their intent to be covered by the township's policies, including health insurance.
They also decided on the mileage reimbursement for 2008, pegged at the IRS rate of $0.505 per mile.
And the township will pay to send Mr. Foltz to a couple of sessions put on by the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors (PSATS). He will attend two Saturday presentations for new township supervisors at Nichols Village in Clarks Summit, all expenses paid. He declined the honor of representing Harford Township at the annual state conference in Hershey; he said he wasn't ready for that yet.
The next public meeting of the Harford Township Supervisors will be on February 12, beginning at 7:00 p.m., at the township office on Route 547.
Susquehanna Boro Council’s first action at their January 22 meeting was to fill the two-year seat left vacant by the resignation of Clay Weaver. The only applicant for the position, Bill Iveson, Jr. was appointed by unanimous vote and promptly sworn in by Mayor Reddon, so that he could immediately participate.
The mayor’s report included a request by a Center Lane resident, that the boro consider putting in another street light there, before work begins on the new sidewalks. After discussion, it was agreed to contact Penelec for the answers to a number of questions, such as the cost, and whether or not replacing existing lamps would solve the problem.
Mayor Reddon reported that the owner of the water tower is still willing to donate it to the boro.
A planning meeting had been held the previous day with representatives from council, the SCDA and Montana Brothers Carnival about the upcoming Hometown Days, which will be held the week of July 13. Montana Bros. will be bringing in rides on Sunday, July 13 to set them up; they will be open for business on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights and Saturday afternoon/evening. Vendors’ booths will be open on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The parade will be held on Friday at 6:30 p.m.
Council was asked to approve the plans for Hometown Days, but had some concerns about parking arrangements. After discussion a motion carried to approve, contingent on a workable parking plan.
A noise ordinance is still in the process of being reviewed by the boro solicitor.
A motion carried to approve an amendment to the boro’s rental inspection ordinance. The main addition to the ordinance is that if tenants are the subject of three (legitimate) disorderly conduct calls to police within a twelve-month period, the property owner must begin eviction proceedings.
A vacant building ordinance is under consideration; its purpose is to hold landlords, especially absentee ones, accountable for the property’s condition and to speed the rehabilitation of the buildings. The ordinance has been reviewed by the solicitor, and after a short discussion a motion carried to begin the procedure to enact it.
A motion carried to authorize changing of authorized signatures on the boro’s bank accounts.
A motion carried to approve appointment of members to the Parks and Rec. committee.
Correspondence included a letter from the SCDA, outlining their activities and goals for the coming year. A motion carried to approve a yearly contribution from the boro, $500, which is a budgeted allocation.
After attending to the agenda items, an around-the-table discussion touched on a number of topics.
Council will find out who the dumpster on Main St. belongs to, and when it will be removed.
A recap of the status of the bridge spanning Drinker Creek, under Main Street, was given. PennDOT had planned to replace it, as it does have structural damage (which is why the turning lane has been blocked off), but the damage caused by the flood of 2006 pushed back a number of projects that were set to be started. This project is in the design phase, but may not begin until 2009 and will be tied in with the Franklin Ave. intersection project. Council will contact PennDOT for an update. One council member also expressed concern about two factors; if the bridge were to become unusable, it would effectively cut off police or hospital access to the other side of town, and there has been a noticeable increase in heavy truck traffic in recent years.
Some time ago, the speed limit on the road near the school campus was lowered from 35 mph to 25, but a lighted warning sign still reads 35 mph; apparently, no one can agree on who is responsible to fix it.
Several residents have suggested that the timing on the traffic light in the center of town needs to be adjusted; this will be discussed further at the next streets committee meeting.
And, there are drainage issues in the Maiden Lane area, which reportedly began with the flood of ’06. A resident’s driveway is washing out from runoff coming from further up the hill, where there is a quarry. It was noted that, due to the quarry operation, the topography of the area has changed. It was believed that the quarry has changed hands some time in the last year or so. The quarry in question is in Oakland Township, but their activities are affecting those in the boro. The prior owner had to put in catch basins, and DEP is conducting yearly inspections. This, too, will be discussed further at the streets committee meeting.
The next regular meeting will be on Tuesday, February 26, 7 p.m. in the boro building.
Rep. Sandra Major (R- Susquehanna/Wayne/Wyoming) would like to inform residents that applications for the state's Property/Tax Rent Rebate program for 2007 are now available.
Eligible participants can receive a rebate of up to $650, based on their rent or property taxes paid in 2007. The program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians who are 65 years or older, widows and widowers 50 years or older, and those 18 years or older with disabilities.
Eligibility income limits for homeowners are set at the following levels, excluding 50 percent of Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, and Railroad Retirement Tier 1 benefits: $0 to $8,000, maximum $650 rebate (Homeowners and renters); $8,001 to $15,000, maximum $500 rebate (Homeowners and renters); $15,001 to $18,000, maximum $300 rebate (Homeowners only); $18,001 to $35,000, maximum $250 rebate (Homeowners only).
The Property Tax/Rent Rebate program is one of many initiatives supported by the Pennsylvania Lottery, which dedicates its proceeds to support programs for older Pennsylvanians.
Property Tax/Rent Rebate claim forms are available by contacting one of Major's district offices or visiting her website at RepMajor.com. Major's offices are at Route 706 Lake Montrose, RR 7 Box 7186, Montrose, PA 18801, (570) 278-3374 and 130 N. Bridge Street, Tunkhannock, PA 18657, (570) 836-5888).
On January 15, at around 10:00 p.m., Mr. Frank B. Susavage III, of New Milford was driving his vehicle in the cemetery when he lost control of his vehicle while trying to leave the cemetery. Towing assistance was required to remove the vehicle from the cemetery. Mr. Susavage was not indiscriminately driving across cemetery plots, as our Barracks Report in last week’s issue may have implied.
News | Living | Sports | Schools | Churches | Ads | Events
Military | Columns | Ed/Op | Obits | Archive | Subscribe