At the start of the February 4, Palmyra Township (Wayne) meeting, Supervisor Chairman and Assistant Road Master Pete Steffen took a minute to recognize the passing of Ed Grissler, who served the township on the zoning hearing board.
The township has been awarded an additional $150,000 towards the township’s sewer project, Steffen said. The funding, he said, will help keep the cost down for commercial customers and owners. He explained that the funding is part of a local share-grant that was generated from Mount Airy Casino. At the January 6 meeting, the board discussed expanding the township building for a comfort station for usage in emergency situations like Hurricane Sandy in October. By this time next year, Steffen said he would like the township to be in a position where the township could receive additional funding for the construction site. He added, that he does not want "to lose focus on that," and to "keep that on the front burner." Once the township has all of its "ducks in a row" Steffen said the board could work on another grant.
Due to the passing of Ed Grissler, there was a vacancy on the zoning hearing board. Jim Gibbons has volunteered to fill the position. Steffen said it is not too often that people volunteer for such positions and the board approved Gibbons’ filling the position.
During the January reorganization meeting, after reviewing the 2013 budget in comparison payment rates of neighboring townships, it was decided that Supervisor and Road Master, Joseph Kmetz would receive a $1.00 raise, making his pay $18.00.
It was also decided that due to the increase in health insurance premiums, the supervisors' quarterly benefits would increase from $300 to $400.
In cases of emergency, during prior meetings, the board has said that there needs to be a better form of communication between emergency responders. Supervisor Vice Chairman, William Hamby said because the crime watch radio already exists, he questioned whether or not it would be okay to "piggy back" on that frequency. With plans on researching which radio service providers would work well and how much it would cost the township to set something up, Hamby said he has to do further research about expenses and the appropriate equipment before presenting something to the board.
Township Secretary and Treasurer, Lois Powderly reported that as of January 31, there is $113,364.58 in the general checking account. The state road account has $14,292.93 in it. While the building code account has $22,873.20 which totals $150,530.71. With the township's certificates of deposits, there is a grand total of $202,541.89. Income for January generated $4,131.30 and salaries totaled $4,535.07 for the month. As for the state road account, $.74 in interest has been added and the township generated $4,858.17 in the building code account with two permits.
Lt. Aaron Bertholf of the Hawley Police, reported that there was one criminal mischief, one harassment, two disorderly conducts, two retail thefts and a regular theft in January. The police responded to one alarm, issued three non-traffic citations and made three other arrests. They also handled 24 incidents and traveled 285 miles in the township.
Hawley Fire Chief Scott Mead, reported that the department responded to 13 calls in January and there was a vehicle fire on Fairmont Avenue.
Dennis Mynarski, Zoning Officer, reported that there was one permit issued and now the Wayne County Historical Society is in compliance with a permit and so they can continue work on the lock house.
As for public comment, Lindsay Edward and Bob Burcher asked the board if it was possible to do something about their neighbor, who they said appears to have nine dogs in a home, along with piles of garbage amassed outside the home that is not being disposed of. Edward and Burcher expressed how horrible the stench from the waste is. In the past, Mynarski has visited the home with the dog control and arrangements were made for the homeowner to get a dumpster for the property. But now, because the problem is ongoing, the reasoning is unknown. Edward said the stench was so bad, that she would not allow her son to play in the backyard. Burcher said the two were looking for direction even though they were unsure whether the board could help them. Steffen said the first step would be a letter to the residence. Edward added "Anything you can do to help, I mean I pay taxes, I deserve to be outside."
Following an ongoing issue with Lisa Marie Osborne, Township Solicitor, Jeffrey Treat has has been working on the case because of funds Osborne owes. Of the funds, Treat said Osborne has a lot of equity. He explained that she has "a $100,000 house, no mortgage, and she's entitled to exemption of $21,000." He added that "obviously she needs to pay all of her creditors in full." Treat has discussed the issue with Osborne's lawyer. Last month, Osborne did not attend a scheduled hearing, and she claimed that she did not know about the hearing. In response, Treat said he prepared a letter with all the certificates of services and notices as well as the stipulation that Osborne entered into with the court, specifically indicating the date by the court as to when she was to appear. Now, he said "Hopefully after she sees that, she'll see the light." He added, "it’s just a matter of time, she's got income coming in, she's got a job. She can pay, she just hasn't been paying us and she hasn't been paying the house or taxes, other creditors."
The next Palmyra Township (Wayne) meeting is scheduled for Monday, March 4 at 7 p.m.