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Tuesday, 11 September 2012

By ANNE HOLLIDAY
WESB/WBRR News Director


Sewer issues once again dominated a Foster Township supervisors meeting, but they also discussed the township’s hiring practices, the Foster Brook intersection and new Tasers for the police department.

During Monday’s meeting, township engineer Harold Bloomgren said the layout of the sewer line extension project is being finalized, and once it’s complete they will address issues concerning streams and wetlands.

Bloomgren also explained the formula for PENNVEST funding, which is based on a points system. The more points a project has, the higher it moves on the priority list. He said one of the most important factors is whether a project would create or retain jobs.

Another concern is “wildcat” lines flowing into waterways.

An October 18 meeting has been scheduled for residents to get more information about the sewer line extension project.

Bloomgren said while engineers were out working in the Kendall Avenue corridor, the question people asked of them more than any other concerned getting water service at the same time they are hooked up to the sewer system.

Bloomgren said he spoke with Bradford Water Authority Executive Director Kim Benjamin about the possibility of part of the township hooking up to city system.

He said Benjamin is interested and told him the authority has “always contributed financially” when adding more customers.

Supervisors said they are concerned with the cost, but told Bloomgren to talk with Benjamin again.

Before Bloomgren spoke, Bolivar Drive resident Bill Hallock said he was concerned about how much inflow and infiltration is coming from each municipality, and suggested that flow meters be installed for each municipality using the sewer system.

Road superintendent Mike Fox said it’s not that cut and dried because there are so many inlets into the main line.

Hallock said he is also concerned that the Tuna Valley Council of Governments believes consolidation could be completed in three to four months.

Supervisor Dale Phillips said he can’t see that happening.

“I don’t believe they can’t get all the entities in a room to agree on what the value of the property – the sewer, the infrastructure – is worth, and all the loans that are out and all the pending 537 plans done in that amount of time,” Phillips said. “I would be shocked for that to be able to happen in that time frame.”

Supervisor John Sullivan said any conversation concerning regionalization of the sanitary authority needs to include the proposed expansion to the sewage treatment plant.

“We’re designing a great, big, giant sewer plant and a great big giant sewer plant that may be more expensive than we need to design and build and, at the end of the day, we may build a great, big, giant expensive sewer plant that doesn’t solve the problem of the I&I and the overflows so we’ll still be in violations with the DEP,” Sullivan said.

In other matters, several residents addressed the hiring of George Coriginani as code enforcement officer for the township. Corignani replaced Jim Robinson, who resigned.

While saying they have “nothing against George,” they were concerned that the township did not advertise the opening.

Wright Street resident Bob Baker added that he has shown interest in the past about the position, but didn’t know until after Corignani was hired that the position was open again.

South Kendall Avenue resident Barb Price said if the township is getting state and federal money they have to advertise for open positions.

“Your hiring practices better be looked into,” she said.

Also Monday, Police Chief Tom Munn said he and his officers have been trained to use Tasers, and are now carrying them.

Munn thanked George Hocker Jr, Dan Oaks, Brian Shoup, who “volunteered their bodies to be Tased” so the officers could practice using the stun guns. He noted that the Tasers deliver 50,000 volts for five seconds.

“They all say they respect it now,” Munn said of Hocker, Oaks and Shoup, and then added with a chuckle, “Only one of them said they would do it again.”

Munn also said since Seaward Avenue has been paved his department has received complaints about speeding on the road.

“The day after it was paved, we started getting complaints about speeding,” he said.

The speed limit is 25 mph until the sewage treatment plant and 35 mph after that, if driving toward New York. He also said the department is monitoring Bolivar Drive for speeders.

In other matters, the supervisors noted that Reid Petroleum, owners of the Crosby Marts, will be advertising for bids soon to add curbing around the Derrick Road entrance to their Foster Brook store. They hope to have the project finished before Thanksgiving.

Also, supervisor chairman Jim Connelly Jr. commended Fox for implementing the Agility Agreement with other municipalities. The agreement allows the sharing of equipment.

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