Historical designation concerns Coalport committee|
Tuesday, July 03, 2012
By Terry Whetstone Staff Writer
COALPORT - Coalport Borough Council heard from Mary Sue Hoey, chairperson of the Coalport Streetscape Committee, at last night's regular monthly meeting, as much of the meeting's discussion centered on the project and the historic designation.
Hoey said the project is now three months behind schedule because a state Department of Transportation project manager quit and did not send in the paperwork.
Hoey said the committee voted at its last meeting to ask the borough to hire a code enforcement officer and to ask council to pass an ordinance preserving the historic designation of the downtown.
"Someone was going to buy two buildings on Main Street, tear them down and put trailers in," Hoey said. "That could cost the borough its historic designation."
She said council needs to adopt an ordinance to let people know what they can and cannot do to buildings along the historic district.
"You can't stop progress," council president Joe Nevling said. "It's hard to dictate to people what they can and can't do."
"You dictate all the time, don't you? Isn't that what you do when you enforce ordinances," Hoey asked. "Progress isn't tearing down the five and ten and putting in a couple of trailers or a metal building."
Nevling has said before he is not in favor of an ordinance telling people what they can and cannot build within the borough.
Later in the meeting, council member Bill Washell asked council if it could create a historical committee for the borough to look into bringing new businesses and such to the community.
He said the streetscape committee has a number of suggestions people in the borough would like to see and ideas of who to bring into the community.
Paul Winslow, treasurer and assistant secretary, said that is what the Glendale Industrial Development Association does.
"Come to our meeting next Tuesday at 7:30 and bring your ideas," Winslow said.
Washell said he would be there.
Nevling also noted hiring a code enforcement officer would warrant a tax increase.
Hoey said she thinks the "slumlords" should be responsible for keeping the apartments in livable shape. She said some are terrible and the landlords just don't seem to care.
She commented on one landlord, saying, "He doesn't live around here, he just collects the rent and that's all he cares about. If you love the people of this town and want to watch out for them, you'd get a code enforcement officer."
Mike Delfosse, who owns rental property in Coalport, said his insurance company visits the site regularly and checks the condition and makes sure there are smoke detectors and such.
Council member Kathy Oshall asked council if the borough could at least look into talking to a code enforcement officer to see what it would cost.
Nevling told her to invite someone to the next meeting to discuss it with council and they would go from there.
Last month, council had a visit from Jack Laing, representing the Glendale Fire Dept. Laing noted that two poles at the fire station will need to be moved, and one of those poles holds the fire whistle. He questioned who would be responsible for the cost and borough secretary Donna Peterson said she looked into it and the flood project money will pay for it.
Council heard from former employee and former council member Scott Askey who wrote to the borough asking for the one week's salary he is due that was held when he was hired. After some discussion Oshall made a motion to pay weeks pay of 35 hours at $7.60. Council member Joe Adam offered a second and it passed 4-0 with Oshall, Adam, Washell and Nevling all approving it while Jon Gallaher, Jack Rupp and Harry Semelesberger were absent.
Several years ago an employee approved the purchase of a large amount of weed killer for the borough, but council told the employee it did not want that much, if any at all.
Council sent the product back to the company, but the company refused it and said it wants payment for the items.
Council has never paid for it, because it doesn't want it. However, the liquid is still in the borough garage and recently sprung a leak. The leak has been contained.
Last night Nevling asked what should be done with it and Oshall suggested spraying the poison ivy along the creek bank, but council fears using it where children may be playing.
Adam agreed with Oshall, noting that it may as well be used, and he suggested using it around storm drains.
A final decision was never agreed upon.
In other business, council:
• heard there is a water leak in the park that is leaking approximately 200 gallons a day.
• advised employees they can start earlier in the day and quit earlier to avoid the heat.
• asked Winslow to keep an eye on the answering machine on days Peterson is not in to make sure nothing needing immediate attention gets overlooked.
• heard Adam purchased a new weed eater at Gates Hardware for $300 and it is working well.
• obtained two loads of wood chips for the price of one at Kitko's in Glen Hope.
• heard there will be a tent revival at Beechwood Park from July 4-15. The area is available in the event of a helicopter being needed or if the fire company needs to get to the dry hydrant.
• received a thank you from a family that recently used the park, noting they appreciate the hard work the employees do to keep it nice.