Leaves cause trouble in boro
Published: November 22, 2012
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TOWER CITY - Tower City residents should not put their leaves out onto the borough streets or alleys. According to Harold Reiner, chairman of the Streets Committee, "I'm seeing leaves in my sleep. We spend every day on leaves."
Councilman Paul Ruth agreed. The crew, he said, spends lots of time cleaning gutters. According to Bob Shuey, if the borough is to pick-up leaves, residents must first put them in paper bags and place them on the curb. The crew, he said, takes the leaves to Natural Soil Products in Frailey Township.
According to borough secretary Irene Dubbs, the ordinance requiring the leaves be put in paper bags was passed several years ago and is still in effect. She noted that bags can be purchased at Pribilla's Home Center, East Colliery Avenue, Tower City.
Dubbs reported Nov 12 that District Magistrate Carol Pankake has given the owner of a Tower City borough property 90 days to decide the disposition of a house that was gutted during a fire that happened more than a year ago.
The property, located on School Lane and Hand Street, is part of an estate and has been sitting untouched since the fire. Neighbors concerned about the safety of the structure complained in August 2011 since the only barrier preventing entry was a yellow tape around the property.
The council re-appointed Perry Shuey to a five year term on the Tower City Borough (Water) Authority. Shuey was appointed to the Authority in August 2010 to fill the seat vacated by Carlos Troutman who had resigned because of poor health.
Council also agreed to send street department employees David Perkins and Rich Schwak to Winter Maintenance School at a cost of $50 each.
The borough is growing. Secretary-Treasurer Irene Dubbs reported that information received from Schuylkill County indicates the medium price of a borough house is currently $16,610. The total assessed value of properties this year is $12,548,935 compared to 2010 when the value was $11,981,640. The total number of per capitates this year is 1,175, compared to 938 in 2010.
The council members briefly discussed vendor permits which former mayor Dale Deiter had issued. Ruth noted he was not so much concerned about the fee vendors would pay to sell their wares during a parade as he was about the borough knowing who was coming into the town. After reviewing the ordinance governing solicitations, it was agreed parade vendors would be covered but a permit fee had to be set.
Council also discussed "No Parking" signs which are attached to light poles for the Halloween parade. It was noted that some residents claimed they didn't realize they were "No Parking" signs and, according to Mayor Dan Daub, two cars had gotten towed. It was suggested that the police drive the parade route informing people that vehicles must be removed. The Mayor, however, said that parking tickets can only be written if the signs are posted.
Council president Bruce Schneck reported he had met with PennDOT and Alfred Benesch enginner, Ryan Fasnacht, at the site of the underground drainage problem on SR 209. Council agreed they would apply for a Community Development Block Grant to help pay for the repairs. Since the problem is located in both the borough and Porter Township, the township would be contacted to join in the application.
Schneck noted that the borough continues to look for a person willing to be appointed as the borough's Emergency Management Coordinator. Daub's suggestion that the Porter Township's coordinator be asked to take on the responsibility was agreed to.
Council also discussed the number of hours the borough has police coverage. According to Daub, the third officer has started working and things are going well, although he said he hopes to have them all working more hours.
In other business, Ruth reported a resident had questioned whether plastic could be used as a clean fill, as well as plaster and lathe, and then covered by dirt. Solicitor Richard Thornburg suggested the resident inquire with the county and the Department of Environmental Protection since what the resident is asking sounds like a landfill.
Councilwoman Judy Kessler read her letter of resignation from the council, effective December 10. She noted that she has had fun and it has been a learning experience, but she feels she is no longer accomplishing anything. Schneck's suggestion that her resignation not be accepted to allow her until next month to reconsider was agreed to by the other members.
Schneck reported he had attended a meeting concerning handicap crosswalks. The actual crosswalks, or at least a plan for them, he said, must be put in place within the next six years. The council also discussed repainting the crosswalks, and it was agreed police officer John Boyer would do them. Two Williams Valley students in attendance volunteered to help.
The annoying bumps on Wiconisco Street between Fifth and Eighth streets were discussed again. Upon Ruth's suggestion, Thornburg will send a letter to the Porter-Tower Sewer Authority giving the Authority 30 days to fix the road or else the borough will do it and send the Authority the bill.
Three Resolutions, requested by Daub, were unanimously approved. One honors Carlos Troutman, who recently passed away, for his dedicated service to the borough and to the United States; Another recognized the achievements of the Williams Valley Boys Soccer Team, describing the players as "hometown heroes and champions"; Congressman Tim Holden was also recognized and thanked for his service to the borough and to his country, along with best wishes for his next endeavor.
The council approved the purchase of Christmas turkeys for the borough's six part-time employees, along with a donation to a church in memory of Fred Donton, husband of the borough's tax collector. Both will be taken from
the "Sunshine Fund".
Because of a resident's request, Thornburg will obtain information from the County's District Attorney's office for the establishment of a borough "Crime Watch" group. Schneck informed the resident that the response had been good
during a previous attempt to form a watch, but no one wanted to take responsibility to chair it.
Various 'junk' taking up space in the borough garage was taken to the junk yard and sold for $49. Old lights were also taken and $24 was given to the Rotary Club.
The previous $39,000 Knights of Pythias tax assessment has been lowered to $9,000.
Repairs to Fourth Street and Wiconisco Avenue have been completed by Miller Paving, Pine Grove, at a cost of $7,700. Because of the cost, neither quotes nor bids were required for the project.