PAUPACK TWP. - After working 25 plus years for the Paupack Planning Commission, Bill Igoe was praised and given a plaque for his work at the April township meeting. Supervisor Chairman Bruce Chandler said Igoe did a “very fine job running the planning commission.” When Solicitor Ron Bugaj said the planning commission is the best in Wayne County, Igoe humbly replied that is because of the Board.
    First aid and CPR training classes will be offered at the Texas Number 4 Fire House in Honesdale at 7 p.m on the second Wednesday of each month and the third Saturday of each month at the Lakeville Fire House at 9 a.m. Registration will not be required, cost is $15 per person and certification will be nationally recognized.    
••• Wangum Falls Bridge
    The Wangum Falls Bridge is scheduled to be replaced this summer. The road is going to stay the same and Supervisor Tom Oakley said the bridge will appear “extremely similar to what’s there now.” Oakley said the project has been in the works for years, and the historical bridge association has provided input. Rather than a wooden deck that currently has a hole in it, there will be a concrete deck without a hole. The bridge has been closed since the beginning of winter. Once the bridge is reopened, it will be a 40 ton bridge that will be able to support emergency vehicles and anything else he said. The construction plans are available at the township building for anyone interested in looking at them.  
•••• Road complaint
    Under public comment, Stan Grady from the Hawleywood Development presented the Board with an issue he is experiencing in the community where he resides. Firstly, Grady asked who owns the roads and whether someone can do anything they want with the roads. Bugaj answered that it depends on what a deed says.
       Grady went on to explain that a resident’s son damages roads within the community when he rides an ATV on them. Grady asked if there was anything the township can do, because the community does not have an association. Since no one maintains the roads, Grady said that was why he wanted the Board’s help. Bugaj said that what Grady was presenting to the Board, “is not likely a township problem.”
     But, Bugaj did suggest Grady see a private attorney and he went on to explain how the law in Pennsylvania works where, “he who uses or has the right to use the roads is obligated to contribute to the maintenance and repair of the roads.” The young man’s behavior, Bugaj said could be trespassing, malicious mischief and or a “host of other infractions.” To which, Grady questioned that as tax payers, could he take his real estate taxes and put it in an escrow account to maintain the development. Bugaj cautioned that Grady’s idea was a bad one because it never works. He explained that no one will accept escrow taxes.
      To which, Grady replied, “So we get nothing for our taxes.” Bugaj informed Grady that with his county, township and school taxes the funds go towards a free public education and with the county taxes the county roads are maintained. Wayne County, Bugaj said is a “very well run government,” without, “a lot of fat in there.” Aside from everyone paying taxes, Bugaj said township residents can take advantage of available resources. When Grady moved into a development, Bugaj pointed out that he knew the roads were private. Grady asked whether a surveyor could go into the community and put markers in. To which Bugaj answered that Grady can hire one, but the township cannot “spend public tax dollars for private purposes.”  

•• Other business
    • A tax assessment appeal for Cove Haven and the properties have been scheduled for a trial in August. Bugaj said the township received the “appropriate appraisals,” that represents values that the township feels the property is worth. He said Cove Haven’s is low, while “we think ours is reasonable.” He explained that to reach a compromise value, the court will set a schedule for the status conference, which will need to meet an agreement. If an agreement is made, the case will go before a judge in August, where a decision will be made on what the assessed value of Cove Haven’s properties are. There will be a decision, Bugaj said no later than September, maybe earlier depending on if an agreement can be made on numbers. 

    • The township has received a $93,000 grant that will go for improvements at the township park, where the basketball and tennis courts will be resurfaced, a playback wall will be installed and there will be walking trails.
    • Matters concerning the former secretary/treasurer are finished, said Bugaj. The township went to court based on a criminal plea that the former Township employee made for taking money from the township. Judge Raymond Hamill issued a restitution order for over $70,000 that she had to pay back to the township. But, Bugaj said that since the township was bonded and a claim was made, the township has already received 100 percent of the restitution. In the meantime, she had been making payments per month, which the township held pending resolution. Since the township has been paid in full, Bugaj said the additional monies were sent back to the insurance company.
    • To do some upgrades at the municipal property, the township received a $90,000 grant which will be used to pave the parking lot, add an additional salt shed and a pole barn. Planning Consultant Jim Martin said he believed the three projects will have to be bid out.
    • New state and federally required street signs will be installed at some point. Chandler said the signs are larger and easier to read.
    • The 2013 audit of Paupack Township has been completed and is available for those who may want to look at it. Chandler said everything was, “found to be in order and good balance.” 

    • On Saturday, May 31 starting at 8 a.m. and running till noon, the township will have its regular spring cleanup at the township building, where anything but hazardous materials can be dropped off. There is a charge that Chandler said is based on a, “sliding scale.” Paupack Township’s spring cleanup, Oakley added is the, “best bargain in the trash business.”
    • A letter from PPL was received about construction occurring within Paupack Township, where contractors will work at least 10 hours or more and it will continue into next year. He said people will need to be careful near the work areas that include Hoadleys Road, which is a state road, because there will be tree removal near by. Chandler said the heavy trucks are, “chewing the roads right up,” but the company is “bonded” to replace them.  
• The Great American Cleanup will be Saturday, April 26. A state-wide event, the cleanup will start at 9 a.m. and run till noon. The Lakeville Church will provide a lunch afterwards. Last year, Oakley said 155 bags of trash were collected from the sides of the roads. The roads, he added are, “absolutely deplorable.” The cleanup will be a great opportunity, he said, to get some exercise and fresh air, while also gaining a, “wonderful feeling of accomplishment.”
    Paupack Township’s next monthly meeting will be May 8 at 7:30 p.m. at the Township offices on Daniels Road.