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Roadway matters abounded at the February 8 Clifford Township board meeting. Township secretary Renee Reynolds announced that for 911 addressing purposes, all dirt roads within the township must be labeled with a street sign by January, 2012. Trent Turner of the Clifford Volunteer Fire Company stated that because some state routes now have street names, emergency service workers and delivery people are “having issues finding places.” The supervisors suggested that Turner meet with road master James Locker to determine the extent of the problem.
In an effort to avoid costly posting and bonding of township roads, the Clifford supervisors discussed requiring drilling companies operating within the township to sign a “gentlemen’s agreement” stating that the drilling company will leave township roads in the condition that it found them in. Reynolds explained that although posting and bonding creates “more clout” for the township, a preliminary assessment of weight limits would cost the township $2,500, followed by the cost to purchase and install signs. Board members stated that bonding township roads could negatively impact some local businesses, and a township resident pointed out that the township would need a means of weighing trucks. Supervisor Barry Searle stated that the “gentlemen’s agreement” has worked for other townships.
Also concerning roads, a resident suggested installing four red lenses when the old blinking light at Clifford Corners is reinstated, creating a four-way stop. “It’s a dangerous intersection,” he stated. The township supervisors agreed that such a measure would cut down on speeding in town, and Reynolds was called upon to issue a letter of request to Penn DOT.
A final road matter was a suggestion from Searle that Locker “network” at PennDOT’s monthly road master meetings in Montrose.
Following a successful experimental meeting, the Clifford Advisory Committee held its first official meeting on January 27, with approximately thirty people in attendance. The next meeting will be held on February 24 at 7 p.m. in the Clifford Township Building.
Sandy Wilmot requested that the board reinstate the township newsletter. On a trial basis, and at a maximum cost of $600, the board agreed to fund two issues. Wilmot also announced that the historical society hopes to create a museum-quality display in the township building. For now, the society will paint murals in the hallway. Wilmot received permission to remove some wall-mounted bulletin boards.
Turner reported that the Clifford Volunteer Fire Company responded to 396 calls during 2009, which was down slightly from the previous year. In addition, last year the fire company pursued $188,000 in grant funding and so far has received $34,000 toward equipment upgrades. So far, there has been good participation in the purchase of house number signs, Turner reported. He also thanked the ladies auxiliary for a donation of $4,000 toward a jaws of life upgrade. Thirty-two years ago, Turner added, the auxiliary purchased the fire company’s present jaws of life equipment.
A resident asked for follow-up on the possibility of expanding the Clifford Board of Supervisors to five members, which he had suggested at last month’s meeting. He stated that a five-member board would “dissolve power a bit” and would provide additional opinions and ideas. Another resident stated that expanding the board would provide more opportunities for a woman to hold a position as supervisor. The first resident stated that with twenty percent of residents signing a petition, the matter of expanding the board could be voted upon at the next election. “If I really wanted to push it,” he added, “I could go stand out there with a clip board.” One supervisor stated that it’s difficult to get supervisors, but the board members promised to seek input from other townships in the area.
The board of supervisors will meet with an agent from McGovern Insurance in order to review policy coverage. A township resident asserted, “I think you really should bid [insurance coverage], and you’re probably going to save money if you do it.”
Dennis Knowlton, chairman of the board, requested that the supervisors begin holding regular work sessions in order to review ordinances and discuss building maintenance and loans. He stated that the interest rate for the sewer project is 3.99%, and that the rate for the roof on the township building is 7.75%. “We need to work on those,” he said. Upon consult, solicitor Joe McGraw stated that such matters are “perfectly appropriate” to discuss at a work session, provided that the supervisors are not making policy or purchasing items.
On January 25, the Harford Township Supervisors signed a document declaring a “disaster emergency” due to the heavy rains on that day of “January thaw.” According to Roadmaster Terry VanGorden, crews have been able to clear up most of the damage to the township’s roads - including one stretch of Jeffers Road that was “lost.” The disaster declaration is intended to make the township eligible to receive reimbursement for the estimated $30,000 it will take to restore the roads to their prior condition. Mr. VanGorden said that the declaration was within guidelines for help from the county, but below the threshold for state emergency assistance.
On an evening that was seeing the beginning of what might be the area’s first really significant snowfall of the season, the Supervisors met on February 9 to review a varied agenda.
Supervisor Garry Foltz reported a meeting with an engineer at the site of a proposed project on Richardson Road that would be funded by a county grant. He said that he hoped to keep the permitting complications to a minimum, but seemed confident that the work - to install a new sluice at a swampy location - could go forward this summer.
Supervisor and Township Secretary Sue Furney reported that she had checked in with the state on 3 grant applications for community development block grants. She said that no money had been available for 2009, and that the status of this year’s state budget for these purposes was still unknown. But at least the state hasn’t lost the applications.
Ms. Furney also reported that the office copier is near the end of its useful life. The service representative that visited recently said that parts are no longer available for that model. Ms. Furney asked if the maintenance contract should be renewed. The Supervisors will look for a new copier and make a decision next month.
Mr. Foltz told the meeting that he and Ms. Furney had received credit cards approved for township purchases. Mr. VanGorden, who was absent when application was made the first time, may apply for himself as well. Mr. Foltz said that responsibility for the cards is shared between the township and the individual to whom the card is issued, and that he expects that the cards will allow more timely and efficient purchasing of needed items.
The township has received a proposed lease contract from Cabot Oil for gas exploration. The offered lease will be a “no surface” contract that will not permit the company to establish any activity on the surface of the 4 parcels owned by the township: the ballfield in Harford village, the township office and garage (actually 2 parcels), and the sewer plant. Mr. Foltz prefers to have separate contracts for each parcel, and would like to have addenda that refer to surface activities removed. The contract will be forwarded to the township’s solicitor for review. The company is offering $5,750 per acre for the up-front incentive bonus, and a 21% royalty share.
Mr. Foltz said that he would be researching the possibility of an ordinance of some kind to try to minimize the effect of noise in the villages of Harford and Kingsley. He said that gas compressors at some locations in the county use engines of 6,000-12,000 horsepower and are unbearably noisy. Harford and Kingsley are not incorporated, so their village limits are not established, but Mr. Foltz is determined to try to find some way to control operations that might disrupt tranquility in the villages.
Mr. Foltz reported that the township will allow the use of a “temporary” driveway on Osborne Road for a logging operation. He said the driveway would be in use for only about 2 months.
The Supervisors are reviewing the status of sewer accounts. According to Mr. Foltz, delinquencies are creeping up. Mr. VanGorden remarked that, although it’s hard on some people in these times, the township’s policy on collections must be pursued.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has requested the opinion of Harford Township for a proposal that would allow Lenox Township crews to mow the sides of state roads in Harford for the next 2 summers under the “Agility” program. Ms. Furney recommended that Harford look more seriously into the Agility program that allows PennDOT and local municipalities to share and trade resources for road maintenance.
A visitor to the meeting asked about the use of a new type of all-terrain vehicle on roads in the township. He wants to use the vehicle for hunting, and wants to use it legally and responsibly. He seems to have gotten mixed opinions from the county and the state police. One of them suggested that a township may have a separate licensing procedure. The Supervisors told him that if the vehicle isn’t legal under state code, then it isn’t legal on township roads. He wasn’t aware that some of the roads he intended to use are actually state “highways” (such as Route 547). In Harford village, for example, only School Street and Market Street are township roads, part of some 67 miles of road owned by Harford Township. The other 99-some miles are state highways.
The township will be seeking bids for road materials as follows: up to 4,000 tons of 2RC stone; up to 2,500 tons of #67 anti-skid stone; up to 300 tons of “gabion” stone; up to 200 tons of 2B stone; and up to 35,000 gallons of AEP or EDP oil for dust control. The Supervisors also accepted the quote offered by Chemung Supply for 320 feet of 18-inch sluice pipe, as well as the quote for the remaining 50-some street signs, poles and hardware that will be installed this summer to upgrade the signs to the latest standard.
And finally, the Supervisors are asking that property owners properly care for their driveways. Drainage and driveway sluice pipes are the responsibility of the property owner. Some driveways do not drain well, or a sluice pipe under the driveway where it meets a public road may be plugged. Under those conditions, excess water can damage the road, and in the winter, can cause large patches of ice to form. Residents are asked to clean out driveway sluices and try to crown the driveways to ensure proper runoff.
The next meeting of the Harford Township Supervisors is scheduled for March 9, beginning at 7:00 p.m. at the township office.
Joyce M. and Maurice D. (by POA) Bailey to Lighthouse Properties, Upstate Investments, Classic Properties and Twin Tier Landholdings LLC, in Harmony Township for $108,000.00.
Dorothy L. Vanerson to Gemini D. Larue, in Forest Lake Township for $55,000.00.
Mark Poidunk Associates LP to Richard A. and Laura L. Tomlinson, in Harford Township for $365,000.00.
James V. Sliney (estate) to Kathryn M. Koch, in Auburn Township for one dollar.
Kevin F. and Grace M. Ives to Robert and Debra J. Oreilly, in Forest Lake Township for $33,000.00.
Richard T. and Ruth L. Kowalewski to Sandra Tremblay and Brian Kowalewski, in Hallstead Borough for one dollar.
Joan G. Swan (NKA) Joan G. Little and David G. Little to Joan G. and David G. Little, in Lenox Township for one dollar.
Joan G. Swan (NKA) Joan G. Little and David G. Little to Joan G. and David G. Little, in Lenox Township for one dollar.
Martin J. and Debra Honeychuck to Martin J. and Debra D. Honeychuck, in Bridgewater Township for one dollar.
Bertha L. (AKA) Bertha Nichols to Nichols Irrevocable Grantor Trust, in Bridgewater Township for one dollar.
Scott David and Cynthia Gillen Klenk to Scott D. Klenk, in Harford Township for one dollar.
Clifton D. Barney (estate) to Melvin D. Barney (estate), in Lenox Township for one dollar.
Melvin D. (estate) and Dorothy M. Barney to Susan Pfahl, in Lenox Township for one dollar.
William Dean Zewan to William Dean Zewan, in Lenox Township for one dollar.
Doris M. Wedin to Robert Wedin, in Clifford Township for one dollar.
Robert Wedin and Margaret Gaudenzi (by POA) to Peter W. and Carol S. Dougherty, in Clifford Township for $197,500.00.
Joseph L. Ciccone to Liza Marie Hart, in Ararat Township for $155,050.00.
Charles and Joyce Barnum to Charles Barnum, II, in Little Meadows Borough for one dollar.
Steven G. Starner to Starner Family Trust, in Middletown Township for one dollar.
Steven G. Starner to Starner Family Trust, in Middletown Township for one dollar.
Mary Jean Hollenback and Harold G. Dibble, Jr. to B and D Brothers LLC, in New Milford Township for $92,500.00.
Harold K. Scheirer, II to Douglas Frederic Fiducia, in Rush Township for $98,000.00.
Eugene E., II and Bridget M. Perry to Oscar A., Jr. and Kathleen E. Miller, in Lanesboro Borough for $5,000.00.
Theresa G. and David Calvin Spencer to David Calvin Spencer, in Jackson Township for one dollar.
Donald S., Jr. and Carolee Collis to Donald S., Jr. (family trust) and Carolee (family trust) Collis, in Thompson Township for one dollar.
Donald S., Jr. and Carolee Collis to Donald S., Jr. (family trust) and Carolee (family trust) Collis, in Thompson Township for one dollar.
Daniel (AKA) Daniel R. and Kathy Wilbur to Daniel R. and Kathy Wilbur, in Bridgewater Township for one dollar.
St. Christopher’s Foundation for Children to Raymond T. Morris (estate), in Rush and Auburn Townships for $30,000.00.
Cynthia M. and Robert L. Hall to David A. and June M. Sienko, in Great Bend Township and Hallstead Borough for $40,740.00.
Brad R. Phillips to Cheyne Renee Treible, both of Hallstead.
Matthew Silas Pierce to Jada L. Mitchell, both of Susquehanna.
John E. Snyder of Montrose vs. Virginia F. Snyder of Waldwick, NJ, married 1982.
Linda B. Dunn vs. Charles S. Dunn, both of New Milford, married 2000.
Cynthia G. Klenk vs. Scott D. Klenk, both of Carbondale, married 1983.
The Susquehanna County Domestic Relations Section has bench warrants for the following individuals as of 10:32 a.m. on February 12, 2010.
Antonio L. Alcantara, Duane Aldrich, Erika L. Back, David Shawn Blaisure, Lisa D. Bollard, Joseph Bonavita, Mechele D. Bonciewicz, Howard A. Burns, III, Darryl M. Chaffee, James W. Donahue, III, Deborah L. Drish, David J. Fischer, Racheal L. Frisbie, Deborah E. Gould, George Graham, David Haines, Jr., John J. Hall, Amanda L. Hendrickson, William N. Hendrickson, Erik E. Krisovitch, Lee Labor, Charlie J. Legere, Carlos L. Leiser, Jason Lindquist, Patricia J. Marrero, Bradley W. Megivern, Joseph Mershon, Kimberly L. Mershon, Ronald N. Mitchell, Joseph C. Moore, Robert A. Muzzy, Steven Nannie, Shane Nelson, Anthony Neri, Jeffrey A. Norton, Sheri Pabon, James E. Purse, Jesse R. Rhinebeck, Jr., Ryan A. Rhoads, Timothy W. Rogers, Robert A. Ryman, Richard D. Shoemaker, Darin Sink, Duane Spencer, Michael Stark, Donald Louis Stocks, Keith W. Vroman, Donald L. Welch, Kenneth L. Wilmot Jr.
Please contact the Domestic Relations Section at 570-278-4600 ext. 170 with any information on the location of these individuals.
HIT AND RUN
On February 10, at 11:05 a.m., an unknown driver was attempting to make a right turn from SR 0011 onto SR 0492 in New Milford when his or her vehicle slid on the snow covered roadway, went over a curb, and struck a fire hydrant with the front end. The driver then fled the scene without contacting the police or the property owner.
HIT AND RUN
On February 7, at 1:00 a.m., the owner of a Ford F350 parked in the Colonial Brick Motel parking lot reported that someone backed a vehicle into the side of his truck and left without leaving contact and insurance information. The incident occurred while the truck was parked in the lot overnight.
On February 3, at 2:09 a.m. Stephen Depew of Uniondale was traveling West along SR 374 when, at the intersection with SR 2033, he lost control on the snow covered road surface and subsequently crashed into a tree. Depew was not on scene at the arrival of PSP; his injuries were unknown at the time of report. PSP was assisted at the scene by members of PennDOT and Kozlowski Towing company.
POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE/MONEY SEIZURE
On February 8 at 12:00 p.m., a motor vehicle operated by Kimaly Britton of Syracuse, NY was stopped for a traffic violation. Indicators of criminal activity were present. A consent search was performed. The search yielded $8,800 in US currency and two ounces of marijuana. Britton was charged with drug offenses; the money was seized.
On February 9 at 7:11 a.m., Jill Kutz of Friendsville was traveling North on SR 4014 when she lost control of her vehicle, which exited the roadway. The Pontiac Montana struck an underground gas pump and a barn. No fire or ems responded. Kutz was utilizing a seatbelt; she was not injured. Parks towed the vehicle from the scene.
HIT AND RUN
On January 24 at 8:00 p.m., an unknown driver struck a Ford Taurus parked in a driveway at 249 Randolph St. in Great Bend Township, causing minor damage to the right rear of the car.
On January 23 at 6:47 p.m., Michele Gamba of Endicott was traveling east on Laurel Lake Road when she lost control of her vehicle while driving across a rut and ice patch in the road. The Dodge went off the road and struck a tree with the front end, before spinning back onto the road and coming to a rest in the westbound lane. Gamba was utilizing a seatbelt; she was not injured.
Sometime between 9 p.m. February 5 and 3 a.m. February 6, the residence of Sarah French and Cheri Dininny in Susquehanna was entered. Personal items belonging to the victims were removed, including a Wii system. Anyone with information is requested to contact PSP Gibson and reference incident number R05-0760194.
On February 7 at 4:26 p.m., Thomas Phillips of Windsor, NY was traveling south on Germantown Road, State Route 1017, in Lanesboro borough. At a certain point Phillips, for unknown reasons, went through the stop sign at the intersection of Main St. and Germantown Road and struck the guiderail, before traveling down the embankment. The vehicle ended up on its side. Phillips was utilizing a seatbelt; he was not injured. The vehicle was towed by French's Towing. Phillips was cited for driving on roadways laned for traffic at District Court 34-3-02, according to the report.
On February 2 at 5:15 p.m., Christine Cofaro o Uniondale was traveling south on SR 2033 when she lost control of her vehicle, which traveled off the roadway, struck a tree, and rolled over. Coffaro was utilizing a seatbelt; she was not injured.
On February 4 at 3:38 p.m., a traffic stop was conducted on Interstate 81 south, at MM 227.2 in New Milford Twp. A search of a 1998 black Lincoln Town Car revealed $19,145 worth of various forms of U.S. Currency. A state police narcotics K-9 was summoned to the scene and indicated on the suspect money. The cash was seized and a state forfeiture proceeding will follow. Three unnamed suspects are listed in the report - a 36 year old male and female from Syracuse, NY and a 36 year old male from Jacksonville, FL.
The rear basement door of an unoccupied residential structure on Main Street in Great Bend was reportedly found open recently. The incident allegedly occurred sometime between the 27th and 30th of January. The victim believes that entry to the structure was obtained through this door. Nothing was stolen, and there were no signs of forced entry, but due to the doors being open the water pipes froze.
February 5: Pennsylvania State Police at Gibson have arrested Ralph Elwood Johnson, 82, of Church Road in Gibson Twp. for sexual contact with a minor. He is accused of having the sexual contact with a male victim when he was between the ages of 11 and 15. The alleged activity occurred at Johnson's Gibson Township home starting in 1992 and continuing until 1995. Johnson has been charged with: 15 counts involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, 15 counts indecent assault, and 15 counts corruption of minors. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Suzanne Brainard, Clifford PA. Judge Brainard set bail at $50,000 unsecured.
On February 2 the wooden mail box post holding up the mail box belonging to Normal Trotter of Uniondale was cut. The incident occurred in Lenox Twp.
THEFT BY UNLAWFUL TAKING
Between the 1st and 22nd of January, Justin Vincent of Great Bend reported charges were made to his debit card in Oakbrook, Illinois and Houston, Texas. Vincent is currently a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, and is stationed in Italy. He related that the charges were fraudulent. The investigation was continuing as of the time of report.
On January 25 a 15 year old juvenile from Montrose ran away from home. He was apprehended in Vestal, NY and returned to his dad.
On February 2, at 11:45 p.m., Timothy Newbrander of Montrose was traveling south on SR 0029 when he lost control of his vehicle on the snow covered roadway, causing it to exit the roadway from the east shoulder. The Plymouth Neon traveled down a 3' embankment, traveled approximately 10', and struck a tree with the left front end. It came to rest approximately 20' south of the impact point, facing south. It was removed from the scene by Rod's Repair of Montrose, PA. Newbrander was utilizing a seatbelt; he was not injured.
On January 29 at 3:28 p.m., Charles Kokesh, Jr. of Johnson City was traveling east along SR 4002, driving too fast for conditions. He lost control of his vehicle, and struck a tree on the left side of the road. The vehicle was towed from the scene by Park's garage. Kokesh reported receiving a minor bruise to his leg as a result of the crash; he was utilizing a seatbelt. He will receive multiple citations for his traffic violations prior to/resulting in the crash.
Between the 30th and 31st of January, sometime overnight, the mailbox belonging to Armand Delabruere of Clifford, PA was smashed. On the 30th of January, the mailbox belonging to James Collum of Kingsley was also smashed.
Sometime between 1:00 a.m. and 4:30 a.m., Mohd Naim Ahmad of Detroit, MI reported, two tires were removed from his trailer while he was out of his truck at the Flying J truck stop in New Milford, Twp.
THEFT OF PROPERTY LOST, MISLAID, OR DELIVERED BY MISTAKE
On January 30 at 1:15 p.m., an unknown person was behind Betty Jeanne Button of Susquehanna while she was in line at Rob's Supermarket. After $130 of US currency fell out of Ms. Button's pocket, the unknown thief picked it up off the floor and, knowing that the money was not hers, failed to give it back to Ms. Button. The incident was captured on video surveillance and the cashier at Rob's Market witnessed the unknown person taking the money. Anyone with information is asked to call PSP Gibson at (570) 465-3154.
FATAL TRAFFIC COLLISION
PSP Gibson is investigating a collision in which two vehicles were traveling in opposite directions on SR 0706 in Bridgewater Twp. One was Thomas Carman of Springfield, MO. He was operating a Ford F-350, and sustained minor injuries. The other was Mark Decker of South Montrose, whose injuries proved fatal. Both vehicles sustained major or disabling damage; there was unknown seatbelt use. The investigation was continuing as of the time of report regarding what led up to the collision. Anyone with information is asked to contact PSP Gibson at (570) 465-3154.
On January 25, between 8 a.m. and noon, unauthorized charges were made to the checking account of Jennifer Lewis of Hallstead. The charges were made at the Weis Market, the Dollar General, and the Walmart in Tunkhannock.
On January 21 at 6:16 p.m., Timothy Anderson of Randolph, NJ was traveling north on SR 81 in the right lane in Great Bend Twp. As he was about to change lanes, he panicked and swerved to the right, causing the vehicle to exit the roadway. Anderson then swerved back to the left, and the car rolled over as it crossed both lanes. It entered the center median and came to rest on its wheels. Anderson sustained major injury; he was utilizing a seatbelt. A front seat passenger sustained minor injury; he was utilizing a seatbelt. A back seat passenger sustained major injury and was flown to CMC; he was not utilizing a seatbelt. Great Bend Volunteer fire and ambulance responded. Vogel's towing removed the vehicle.
If you have information regarding any of these incidents please contact PSP Gibson at (570)465-3154.
Following is the list of names drawn to serve as Petit and Traverse jurors to appear in the Court of Common Pleas, Susquehanna County Courthouse, Montrose, on the first day of March at 9:00 a.m.
Apolacon Twp.: James Butler.
Ararat Twp.: Esther Cobb.
Auburn Twp.: Kathy Traver, Thomas Walters, Edward Zygmunt.
Bridgewater Twp.: Kurt Brunges, Rose Rosenberry, Kimberly Travis.
Brooklyn Twp.: Brian Chidester.
Choconut Twp.: Thaddeus Corson, Katherine McVaugh, James Pritchard, Candy Root.
Clifford Twp.: Walter Uhlman.
Dimock Twp.: Edwin Hollister, Dennis Hollister.
Forest City 2W: Jill Baron.
Forest Lake Twp.: Kenneth Bush.
Gibson Twp.: Jeanette Brainard, John Brainard, Jennifer Whitenight.
Great Bend Boro: Steve Stark, Bruce Walker.
Hallstead Boro: Paul Fields, Richard Russell.
Harford Twp.: Paul Baldwin, Elizabeth Montalvo, Frank Payne.
Herrick Twp.: Matthew Ferrel, Carmine Gigliotti.
Jackson Twp.: Lisa Carey.
Lanesboro Boro: William Roberts, Daniel Rupakus.
Lathrop Twp.: Richard Ball, Glenn Love, Kenneth Smith.
Lenox Twp.: Robert Cross, Cara Dubas, Tracee Mcevay-Kilmer, Aline Price, James Ross, Daniel Spencer, James Taylor, Benjamin Winters.
Liberty Twp.: Shannon Gilbert, Linda Kelly.
Little Meadows Boro: Larry Griffith, Patricia Turano.
Montrose Boro 2W: Joel Maxey, Edward Stark.
New Milford Boro: Bernadette Harris, Sandra Smith.
New Milford Twp.: Mark Conklin, Jean Frink, Gregory Grover, Tim Hall, Mark Marshall, Yvonne Stone.
Oakland Twp.: Thomas Corbin, Tracie Osterhout.
Rush Twp.: Linda Decker, Ray Ellinger, Jeneane Fugel, William Magdin, Henry S. Very.
Silver Lake Twp.: Bruce Barney, Joanne Cerretani, Todd Crampton, Anthony Desanto, Nancy Luce, Julia Mann, Lori Norton, Margaret Williams.
Springville Twp.: Debbie Flower, James Naylor.
Susquehanna Boro 1W: Joseph Bucci.
Susquehanna Boro 2W: Seth Cook.
Union Dale Boro: Clark Reeder, Donna Seney.
At their meeting last month, the Oakland Boro Council had discussed changing the boro’s building codes inspector, as there has been some dissatisfaction with the firm presently used. One alternative that had been discussed was to get information from the Susquehanna County Council of Governments (COG) about their inspection services. At their February 11 meeting, council reviewed information from COG. It would be necessary to enact an ordinance to join COG, and yearly membership fees would be far less than had been thought; the fees are based on population. COG would handle all required paperwork for permits and inspections, and they have regular office hours to handle any inquiries. The boro would not be required to send a representative to attend the monthly COG meetings, but COG strongly urges attendance so that members can keep up on what is happening at COG and vice versa.
The boro’s contract with their present inspectors expired on December 31, and is automatically renewed on a month-to-month basis; the boro need only give 30 days notice to cancel it.
The information from COG was made available to all council members for review.
In other business, Mayor Glover reported that the month’s police activity included issuing traffic citations, a car fire, and a violation of the boro’s curfew ordinance. The mayor had attended the most recent regional police meeting, and reported that the committee was arranging for a representative from DCED to attend their next meeting.
In response to complaints about an individual who has been riding a lawn mower on the boro’s streets and sidewalks, mostly at night, the mayor said that he will see that the police look into it.
The trailer on the property adjacent to the park that the boro has purchased has been demolished.
Cynthia Beavan, the boro’s representative on the board of River Bounty, reported that negotiations are ongoing with another firm to get the hydro electric plant at the river dam up and running.
Susquehanna Boro sent council a letter, asking for a contribution to repair the emergency siren, as it serves all of the surrounding communities. After discussion, a motion carried to contribute $200 to its repair.
Council reviewed information sent by GO21, a nonprofit organization, asking that letters in support of local rail service be sent to state legislators. The initial plan is to get freight service into the area, which could eventually lead to passenger service.
Several council members commented that they are very pleased with the work that Jeff Wayman has been doing on the boro’s roads, especially with the recent winter weather.
Correspondence included a copy of the 2008 liquid fuels fund audit; notice that the PA State Association of Boroughs is seeking candidates to serve as second vice president; an invitation to join the Pennsylvania Borough Councils Association; and information about the Robert G. Edwards scholarship, which will be forwarded to the school.
Surveys had been sent out to the residents of Prospect St., relating to grant funding the boro is seeking to repave that street. All but six of the surveys had been returned; those who have not filled them out and sent them in are requested to do so, as the application will not be considered without them.
There is a small parcel of property near where the old bridge to Susquehanna used to be that has a billboard on it. The owners of the property had offered to donate it to the boro, but council had some questions, such as whether any income from the billboard would be enough to offset the loss of the tax revenue the boro receives for the property. After discussion, it was decided to contact the billboard advertising company for further information, such as what the expected revenue, if any, would be, and whether or not they intended to keep using it or take it down.
The meeting adjourned to an executive session.
The next meeting will be on Thursday, March 11, 7:00 p.m. in the Lanesboro Community Center.
On January 1, Nicholas Newell of Montrose, lost control of his 2000 Chrysler while traveling south on SR167 on the slippery roadway, and ended up on a snow bank off of the north bound lane. Newell was not injured, but his vehicle was extensively damaged.
On January 1, a domestic dispute between husband and wife was reported at a residence in Forest Lake Township on Fraser Road. SLTPD responded to the call and the situation was rectified.
On January 2, Susan Ladner of Hallstead, PA, was driving her 2004 Ford Escape north on SR29 too fast for conditions and crashed on the snow covered roadway. She was subsequently arrested for DUI and not driving at a safe speed. She was not injured and the vehicle was extensively damaged, towed and impounded. This incident is still under investigation.
On January 3, a vehicle was reported crashed on State Line Road and Hawleyton Road. After arrival of SLTPD, the owner reported that she slid into the ditch on the icy roadway and she had called a tow truck to pull her out.
On January 4, Richard Harder and Joel Spry were involved in a fender bender on SR4002. They exchanged insurance information and SLTPD filed a report and did not have to respond to the scene.
On January 8, Janet DePue and her daughter slid off of the slippery roadway and into a ditch on Forest Lake Road, Forest Lake Township. No one was injured and some friends rescued the vehicle.
On January 8, Samuel Corman of Nacogdoches, Texas, was driving a friend’s pickup truck on Valley View Road, Franklin Township, with passengers, Christopher Godeaux of Keithville, LA and Rodney Whitaker of Nacogdoches, TX. Corman lost control on the icy road and the vehicle went off the road and over a bank and onto it’s roof. Godeaux and Corman were treated for injuries at a local hospital and Whitaker was not injured. The vehicle was towed by High Tech.
HARASSMENT BY COMMUNICATION
On January 19, William Korutz of Silver Lake Township reported he was receiving on-going harassment calls. He was instructed what action to take and the situation has been rectified.
On January 21, Jim Eldred reported that someone had stolen downed logs from his property in Forest Lake Township. Investigation showed that someone did slide the logs in the snow. This incident is still under investigation.
On January 28, Tammy Manning of Hallstead, PA, was traveling north on SR29 near Franklin Forks when she lost control of her 1992 white Chevy Lumnia on the snow and ice covered roadway and rolled it over, clipping a pickup truck in the rear causing little damage to the pickup. Manning was not injured, but her vehicle appeared totaled. Manning did not possess a valid drivers license and was subsequently issued a summons.
On January 28, in Franklin Township, a family dispute erupted between a 17 year old male teenager and his parents. SLTPD intervened and the parties were reunited and the situation was rectified.
In January 2010, repeated acts of criminal mischief took place in Forest Lake Township involving vehicles driving onto lawns and tearing up the turf. Patrols were increased in the areas.
VEHICLE CODE VIOLATIONS
Several vehicle code violations have been reported throughout the Townships involving the natural gas drilling trucks and equipment. Local and State Police have been involved policing this activity on an on-going basis.
Any information or questions for the Silver Lake Township Police, please call 570-278-6818 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. All information will be held strictly confidential. Visit the Silver Lake Township website at silverlaketwp.org to see all of Silver Lake Townships’ news, profiles and resources, including the police reports.
The Susquehanna County Commissioners decided to revise the 2010 Holiday Schedule during the February 10 salary board meeting. The Commissioners had already altered the 2010 Revised Holiday Schedule at their last meeting on January 27, to adhere to their union contract constraints.
According to the (new) Holiday Schedule, the main issues were the fact that July 4, 2010 falls on a Sunday, which by the January 27, revised schedule, would mean county employees would be coming to work on the day which Montrose celebrates the holiday.
According to regular July 4 festivities, the town is “closed down” at approximately 7-7:30 a.m. due to three races it hosts, in addition to the activities, a lengthy parade, and more than 100 booths for people, organizations, business or handicrafts on the “Green.”
Apparently the Commissioners had second thoughts about that day and employees coming to work, not having places to park, or having to walk blocks to get to their jobs.
According to one of the organizers of the festivities, “I am sorry, but it will run as usual, it would be impossible to leave parking spaces, as the vendors come in very early that morning to set up their booths and display their wares, let alone, the races that begin precisely at 8 a.m. I am sorry that the county employees will have a very hard time getting within two or three blocks of the Courthouse by 8:30, but we cannot alter the schedule that has been in effect for a large number of years. People from throughout the country plan their vacation to include these festivities and we draw in a crowd of 15,000, sometimes less sometimes more.”
The other change in the schedule was revised to include taking Christmas Eve Day, Friday, December 24, 2010, off instead of December 25, 2010, Christmas Day.
In addition, New Year’s Day 2011, Friday, December 31, 2010 will also be a recognized holiday.
The Gift Policy-Section F was changed again, a copy of which employees may obtain at the Chief Clerk’s Office.
The short meeting before the Salary Board saw the recognition of Mrs. Jennie Grisafi, District Justice Peter Janicelli’s Office for her 20 years of service to the County in that capacity.
A number of requests and/or payments for seminars were approved.
Marysa Edwards-Ball was hired to the full-time open caseworker position in Children and Youth at 37.5 hours per week, $16.27 per hour, with a six month probationary period and benefits as per the Residual Professional Bargaining Unit Contract, starting date to be determined, as per the recommendation of Susan Adamec, Agency Director. Mrs. Edwards-Ball is being hired at the Casework 2 level.
Also hired in the Children and Youth Office was Kimberly Harshaw, in the Caseworker 1 level, with a six month probationary period and benefits per the Residual Professional Bargaining Unit Contract, at starting wage of $15.27 per hour; starting date to be determined again, by Agency Director Susan Adamec.
Last year, New Milford celebrated its 200th year, in part with the excavation of 2 copies of the famous and rare “Blue Book,” published in 1959 and chronicling the town’s first 150 years. Area historians are now collecting material covering the 50 years since, and the Blue Ridge School District is doing its part. At the very end of the School Board meeting on February 8, Superintendent Chris Dyer pointed listeners to the district’s web site for a copy of Blue_Ridge_Blue_Book.pdf, a large compendium of photos and information gathered from yearbooks and the memories of some of the contributors to that history. A link to the document can be found at the bottom of the start page of the district’s web site, at http://www.brsd.org.
The evening of meetings began at 6:30 p.m. with committee sessions, including Technology and Finance and Physical Facilities. Mr. Ketchur’s Technology Committee received information on costs and services offered by various internet service providers from Technology Directory Donna Tewes and her assistant, Mike Stewart. The district’s Internet connection has very nearly reached capacity, so the committee is considering bids to provide more “bandwidth” to improve service.
Business Manager Loren Small reviewed several items of interest to the Facilities Committee. He reported that Army recruiting is still interested in contributing to the wrestling program in return for Army logos that would be visible on the mats. The committee decided that the logos would not travel with the mats when they leave the campus for outside matches.
Mr. Small also reported that Dunmore Roofing will be doing the work to repair the leaky roof over the High School under warranties honored by the general contractor, Weatherproofing Technologies/Tremco. Dunmore was the subcontractor that actually installed the defective roof. Tremco has pledged to remedy the problems at their cost, whatever it takes.
The Committee is awaiting a report from Harold Empett on possible facility changes to enlarge the weight room, as requested by a parent and supporter last month. Unfortunately, Mr. Empett was off on “snow patrol” with PennDOT in the southern part of the state and could not attend.
The district is in negotiations to purchase up to 5 acres of land from the Grover estate adjacent to the campus. The district’s owned property does not fully encompass a small part of the lower athletic field, including the track. The Grover estate has offered some of the land to the district to remedy this situation. There seems to be some lack of clarity about the disposition of mineral rights on the parcel in question. School Board President Alan Hall said that the mineral rights (read, gas rights) must be part of the deal.
A request from the Endless Mountains Theater Company (EMTC) to use the main auditorium is in question. The troupe asked for exclusive use of the theater 5 nights a week from late January into March. Mr. Small said that, while the district would like to make the theater available, such a large commitment may not be possible.
The Board’s business session opened with recognition of two seniors. High School Principal Scott Jeffery usually does the honors, but, due to a recent family event, he could not attend, so Middle School Principal Matthew Nebzydoski did the honors. He introduced Marvin Green, an outstanding athlete in basketball and football, a winner of high honors who expects to attend Lackawanna College for 2 years before going on to West Virginia University to study sports management. Rovena Grant, president of the prom committee, has also been active in a variety of sports and will soon select a college, probably in New York City, to study psychology or law.
Among personnel matters on the otherwise routine business agenda, the Board adopted a recommendation to appoint Judith Dewey as substitute school nurse for the current year. Also, Thomas Welch was present to accept the board’s welcome as the High School Band Director, effective the next day. Mr. Welch will also serve as a long-term substitute band and music teacher for the remainder of the school year. (The board retroactively appointed Matthew Stevens as band director from November to February. There was no indication what happened to Mr. Stevens.)
The Facilities Committee has been considering 5 major projects for work on the campus over the summer. The board decided to pay Burkavage Design Associates $34,400 to prepare designs for each of the items: renovations in the kitchen and serving areas in the cafeteria; 2 parking lots, including paving; renovation of the entryway to the Elementary School; and reconfiguration of the High School chemistry lab. Once the designs and cost estimates are available, the board will have to decide which of these will actually be bid for work over the summer months.
The board gave itself 30 days to review a large package of changes to its policy manual, covering such issues as non-discrimination, discipline and evaluation procedures involving students with disabilities; bullying, including both the regular and cyber varieties; evaluation of professional employees (teachers, administrators); safety, including establishing a new safety committee and plan; using service animals in the schools; and appointing the school board president and district superintendent as ex-officio members of all advisory committees. Most of the changes were necessitated by changed in state law or regulation, or were recommended by the Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) to implement state regulations.
During administrator reports, Mark Fallon, Special Education Director, suggested that he might be asking the board for one or two new positions for next year. One would be an additional aide; the other would be a life skills teacher, to replace the aides now serving this function. He also reported that there have been “6 or 7 exits” from special education this year so far, more students than ever before rejoining regular classes. He is also searching for a replacement for the professional development (training) services that had been provided under contract by Dr. Armstrong. He said that the board expected to use the services of staff at the Instructional Unit (IU) for this purpose, but the IU person recently left. He was advised to canvass other IUs in Pennsylvania for similar support.
Mr. Nebzydoski reported that Paige Oakley was selected for the “Character Award” for the month, and will enjoy a free dinner with her family at Armetta’s. He also reported that the 3 schools together have so far collected over $1,500 for Haiti earthquake relief.
Elementary School Principal Matthew Button thanked the board for its support of the new Art Club, which will start up on February 22. And he announced that a “bedtime stories” event for his students and their families will take place on the evening of February 26, in cooperation with Susquehanna County CARES.
Mr. Dyer described a strategic planning work book that he distributed to all members of the board. The loose-leaf binder contains minutes and other materials from the deliberations of the Strategic Planning Committee that he chairs with board members and others in the community, whose final report later in the year will offer guidance toward achieving the district’s goals.
One of which is to get Mr. Empett back in Susquehanna County before we get our share of the snow. If we don’t get too much, consider attending the next board meeting - a workshop - scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. on February 22. All public meetings take place in the cafeteria in the Elementary School, and committees often meet in advance of board meetings on the same evenings. Check the district’s web site for details.
This reporter did not attend the February 8 Montrose School Board meeting, but according to the superintendent several items were dealt with that evening, and the meeting ended earlier than it often does.
Kim Harwood, chairman of the library building fund campaign, gave a presentation at the beginning of the evening, asking the district to extend its agreement with that organization another five years. The school had given them land to build the library upon, with an initial five year agreement. The library still has funds to raise, however, and did not meet the original five year deadline. The matter was discussed, and it was decided that it would be put on the march agenda.
The district sent their attorney the payments for the balance of the roof project; he is to hold them in escrow until such time as the district gets its warranty for the project. The amount of this action totals around $171,000 dollars. A motion was also made to approve the settlement agreement about the roof.
The resignation of Sandy Kaub, an English instructor and the woman in charge of the newspaper, was received with mixed feelings. Mr. Ognosky commented on her exemplary service, and stated that she would be missed.
At the work session a bid for the administrative office building was discussed. Certain people on the board had a few questions that were addressed. It was decided that they would put the project out to bid, though that does not necessarily mean that the board will decide to embark on the construction just yet.
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