Articles

March 13, 2014 - Regular Monthly Meeting

The Regular Monthly Meeting of the Montour Township Board of Supervisors was called to order on
March 13, 2014, at 7:30 p.m., by Chairman Gerald Powers, with all members present.
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
A moment of Silence was observed.

PUBLIC COMMENTS:

Terry Hoover recommended to reinstate the no left turn at Cross Road and Rt 11. It was stated that
since it is a state road, the Township will have to contact PennDot. It was also suggested to make Cross
Road a one way street.
John Reibsome commented on the condition of Tower Road. Mr. Mullen said it is to be discussed later
in the meeting.
Mr. Powers said a traffic study needs to be done and contact PennDot.
Linda Woodward stated that with the Comprehensive Plan, the Planning Commission will be
recommending changes and lighting on Duessen & Grovania.
Chief Eckart stated that we will be taking possession of the Traffic Display Sign soon & the Police
Department will be utilizing an Aggressive Driving Grant.
Mr. Powers commended the Police & fire Departments for their commitment to the community.

MINUTES:

A MOTION was made by Mrs. Carl, seconded by Mr. Powers, to approve the Minutes of the Regular
Monthly Meeting of January 16, 2014 as drafted. Motion carried.
RATIFICATION OF BILLS FROM FEBRUARY 2014 (Meeting Cancelled):
A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mr. Mullen, to ratify the payment of bills for February
from the General Fund in the amount of $49,828.64. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mrs. Carl, to ratify the payment of bills for February
from the Special Police Fund in the amount of $435.41. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers, to ratify the payment of bills for February
from the Highway Fund in the amount of $5,508.72. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mrs. Carl, seconded by Mr. Powers, to ratify the payment of bills for February
from the Sewer Fund in the amount of $11,785.01. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers, to ratify the payment of bills for January
from the Debit Card in the amount of $568.03. Motion carried.
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BILLS DUE FOR PAYMENT:

A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers, to approve bills to be paid from the
General Fund in the amount of $33,172.65. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mrs. Carl, to approve bills to be paid from the Special
Police Fund in the amount of $538.72. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mrs. Carl, to approve bills to be paid from the
Highway Fund in the amount of $3,659.13. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mrs. Carl, seconded by Mr. Powers, to approve bills to be paid from the Sewer
Fund in the amount of $11,623.91. Motion carried.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers, to approve bills to be paid from Debit
Card for the month of February in the amount of $73.51. Motion carried.

OPENING OF BIDS FOR TRACTOR AND BACKHOE:

Backhoe Bids:
Bid # 1 Gaudino Brothers LLC $1768.00
Bid # 2 Josh Greene $500 more than the highest bid up to $7760.00
Bid # 3 Floyd Frey $4600.00
Bid # 4 David Van Horn $4265.00
Bid # 5 Lamar Welliver II $2151.00
Bid # 6 Mike Venezlano $1401.00
Bid # 7 Todd Normandin $3205.00
Bid # 8 Sam Robbins $4005.00
Bid # 9 Martin Yeager $5688.00
The Resolution was read by Solicitor Roberts for the sale of the backhoe to Josh Greene for $6,188.00.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mrs. Carl to accept the bid of $6,188.00 from Josh
Greene. Motion Carried.
Tractor Bids:
Bid # 1 Todd Normandin $1305.00
Bid # 2 Mike Venezlano $1001.00
Bid # 3 Floyd Frey $3600.00
Bid # 4 Wayne Rinehimer $3275.00
Bid # 5 Josh Shuman $2670.00
Bid # 6 Martin Yeager $3412.00
Bid # 7 Gaudino Brothers LLC $ 655.00
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The Resolution was read by Solicitor Roberts for the sale of the Tractor to Floyd Frey for $3,600.00.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mrs. Carl to accept the bid of $3,600.00 from Floyd
Frey. Motion Carried.

TRANS CON PIPELINE:

Mr. Powers indicated that a gas pipeline will be coming through Montour Township. Representatives
from the project met with Township officials to give information on the project. It will run from
Hemlock Township, through the mall, across the road, over the Magee property, through Catawissa, all
the way to the Chesapeake Bay. Mr. Powers also indicated that a map for viewing the route is available
on their web site.
Lind Woodward spoke to a resident about the pipe going through their property, they spoke about the
fees being paid to the residents for the use of the land for the pipe. It is a onetime fee but they would
like to pursue an annual fee.
Mr. Powers asked Solicitor Roberts about the possibility of taxing the pipeline. Mr. Roberts responded
that he did not have a chance to research the matter but he did not think that it can be because it is a
regulated utility.
Road Foreman, Mike Hinkle would like a more detailed map, he stated that the one provided is not too
clear.
Mr. Powers stated that this will be a three year plan slated to be finished in 2017.
Linda Woodward stated that the temporary easement will be 150 feet wide with the permanent
easement being 50 feet wide.
Mr. Mullen stated that there will be a preliminary proposal. The project is anticipated to be in the
Township for three weeks.
Mr. Powers stated that the intent of the meeting with the project managers was to inform the public as
much as possible.

FLOOD AUTHORITY INITIATIVE:

Rich Ridgeway, Columbia County Commissioner, has had surrounding communities ask about storm
water problems. He stated that it is easier to get grants for such projects when multiple communities
are involved. He then said that it was decided to form the Flood/Storm Water Authority for Columbia
County. The Authority will be a vehicle for Townships to obtain grants, the Authority will not actually
apply for the grants. Mr. Ridgeway stated that they will be holding their second meeting this Tuesday,
March 18, 2014 3:00 at the county building. They will be discussing how to structure the Authority, who
will be on the Authority and working out all the details. He also stated that the County owns the Flood
wall at Kawneer.
Mr. Powers mentioned that there is a PA American Water Grant for water quality control. Mr. Powers
stated that the grant could be used to clean the canal and make it into a tourist attraction. The grant is
for up to $10,000.00 for areas with water quality issues. Mr. Powers will submit the grant proposal.
Brad Prater will be the Township’s representative on the Authority.
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CODE OFFICER REPORT:

Nick Fritz, Codes Officer, must leave so he asked to give his report early. He stated that he has been
sworn in at the Magistrates office and has spoken to several people about the steps he needs to take to
prosecute residents on code violations. He presented a 3 step plan:
1. Talk to the resident in person, tell them what is wrong and give them 15 days to clean up.
If not cleaned up in 15 days,
2. Send letter, Certified and Regular Mail with certification of mailing, giving them 10 days to
clean.
If not cleaned up in 10 days,
3. Citations will be filed at the Magistrates Office.
Photos will be taken on first day then again on the 16th day and so on after.

OLD BUSINESS:

PUBLIC SEWER:

STP OPERATOR’S REPORT:

John Bauer, STP Operator, has submitted a written report of activities for the month of February, 2013.
Mr. Bauer reported that the sewage treatment plant is running good. He stated that Roto Rooter
started the hydrant replacement project but had to stop work. He met with a USG representative to do
epoxy on the pump at Indian Head however there must be at least 48 hours of 42 degree or higher
temperature. They also need fresh water.
Information was received from PPL about the Spade Ave Pump Station raising. They will bring the lines
in overhead
Both of these projects will probably run simultaneously sometime in May or June.
Mr. Powers presented a report from Max Stoner, Engineer, for the month of March. He was unable to
attend.

KURIAN SEWER HOOK UP:

Solicitor Roberts stated that they are still looking for an alternative route. Mr. Stoner’s report stated
that there has been no additional activity on this matter.

RAISING OF PUMP STATIONS:

Mr. Stoner’s report indicates that information from PPL states that in areas subject to flooding, they do
not want to utilize underground conduits. Therefore, they have approved an overhead feed from a pole
to the pump station. This work will be done in 1 to 2 months. The Township’s contractor needs to
coordinate the work with PPL, John Bauer and Roto Rooter at that time.

DELINQUENT ACCOUNTS – COLLECTION AGENCY:

There was nothing new to report.
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ARB CONTRACT RENEWAL:

When asked for reports, ARB has not responded. We have received no monthly reports, however there
are 4 collection contracts. The original complaints sent for signatures had wrong information on them,
new ones were sent. Mr. Mullen suggests that the Township drop ARB as a collection agency for Breach
of Contract. Mr. Mullen is to contact Bloomsburg to see how they deal with these issues.

EXTENSION OF PERRY AVENUE TO ROUTE 11:

Mr. Stoner’s report indicated that a draft letter is ready to be sent to PennDOT requesting an official
field visit to the site. The report is underway for justifying the request for the emergency access to
Montour Boulevard.

BUDGET VS. ACTUAL EXPENSES AND REVENUE UPDATE:

Ms. Carl stated that the Budget looks good, it is still early in the year.
Mr. Powers asked about the Tax Anticipation Loan and what has been used so far. He also asked
Solicitor Roberts how to deal with the loan when the taxes start coming into the Township.
Solicitor Roberts stated that the loan must be paid by June 30th, 2014 and that the tax monies should be
used to pay the current month’s bills then whatever excess should be paid on the loan as soon as
possible.
Mr. Hoover mentioned that Flood Demolition paperwork will be sent to FEMA tomorrow. He is
anticipating approximately $95,000 to $100,000 from FEMA for flood reimbursement.

DANGEROUS STRUCTURE ON READING STREET:

It was reported that the building has been demolished. The debris and tree branches have been cleaned
out and it looks as if the property is being worked on. Mr. Prater, Zoning Officer, will look into this
matter more in the spring.
Mike Hinkle stated that if fill is needed for the hole, the Township has fill that can be used. He will
contact Mr. Long.

SUNKEN HIEGHTS WATER ISSUE:

There was nothing new to report.

UNITED WATER SERVICE - UPDATE:

Mr. Powers is to call the Water Co. The water line needs to be extended.

FLOOD MITIGATION PROGRAM - UPDATE:

Previously discussed.
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CODE OF ORDINANCE – UPDATE:

Attorney Roberts reminded the Board that the Code of Ordinance should be updated as soon as possible
when the funds are available but after the Comprehensive Plan is complete. Linda Woodward stated
that someone is in place to do this and she will inquire what the cost will be.

LANDLORD REGISTRATION ORDINANCE:

There was nothing new to report.

COMPREHENSIVE PLAN:

Linda Woodward stated that the Comprehensive Plan will be discussed at the regular Planning
Commission meetings. The zoning maps will be completed after the Comprehensive Plan is complete.
She also indicated that there will be a public meeting on April 15, 2014.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mrs. Carl to allocate funds for advertisement for the
Planning Commission meeting. After further discussion, this motion was not voted on.

A. ZONING MAP:

Linda Woodward stated that the Planning Commission needs funds for the purchase of
maps to refer to for the Comprehensive Plan
A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mrs. Carl to allocate $1000 to the
Planning Commission for advertisement and the purchase of maps. Motion carried.

PREVAILING WAGE – ADDITION TO TOWNSHIP SHED:

Max Stoner’s report stated that he received a written quote from Terry Eckart in the amount of $3,160
from J. Anderson Contracting, Inc. to remove and replace the damaged ceramic tile in the side hallway
of the police office. This proposal was sent to Northwood Homes, Inc. for final negotiation of the
change order and contract closeout. He is still waiting for a response from Amos Speicher at Northwood
Homes. Mr. Stoner suggests that the Board consider paying the change order to adjust for prevailing
wages if the contractor agrees in writing to allow the $3,160 to be deducted from the change order.
This would result in a net payment of $10,576.97 to Northwood Homes.

HAZARDOUS WASTE PICK-UP AREA:

It was indicated that there were questions about the cost of having the Hazardous Waste Pick Up. Linda
Woodward stated that there may be an upfront cost but it will be covered by the fees charged at the
event. It was mentioned that the term Hazardous may be a concern, Mr. Mullen stated that it would be
household hazardous waste, for example, paint, old furniture, electronics, pesticides etc. The location
is also an issue. Mr. Hinkle was concerned about having it at the Township shed area if it was an
ongoing project. The event would be a one day event. The Department of Agriculture will send a unit
for the waste to be collected and when the event is over they will remove it and dispose of it properly.

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Mr. Powers was concerned that if it was not taken care of properly would the Township be held
responsible. Linda Woodward and Mr. Mullen indicated that if the Township provides the place to hold
the event with no charge to the Agriculture Department they would accept full responsibility.
Veronica Klesh asked if this event will be open only to Township residents. This event will be for
Montour Township residents only.

WEBSITE SURVEY:

Linda Woodward indicated that it is up and running, there have been 8 responses so far. She is looking
for more in the future.

STONE CASTLE ZONING CHANGE:

Linda Woodward stated that the plans for the Motel have been dropped by the developer. John Yohey,
representing his mother the owner of the motel, attended the Planning Commission meeting. With the
developer backing out of the sale, Mr. Yohey stated that the motel is in bad shape and that he doesn’t
want to rent to the same kind of clientele as in the past that caused trouble but because of the shape
the motel is in he will have no choice. He also told the Planning Commission that the motel is listed with
a realtor and any potential buyer may do the same.
Linda Woodward stated that because Mr. Yohey himself brought up the shape of the motel, it raises the
question whether the Codes & Zoning Departments could go in and make sure it is safe for occupancy.
Solicitor Roberts indicated that the only way they could go into the building and inspect is with the
consent of the owner or an Administrative warrant issued by the court.
Linda Woodward asked if an ordinance could be adopted to address this situation for the future.
Solicitor Roberts will look into it.

VERIZON LAND DEVELOPMENT PLAN:

The current Ninety (90) day extension is up in April, 2014. Verizon Wireless requested an additional
ninety (90) day extension. The extension was granted. Solicitor Roberts stated that the Improvements
agreement and Surety are still needed.

ADDITIONAL COMMENT FROM SOLICITOR ROBERTS:

Solicitor Roberts stated that in regard to the complaint against one of the Township’s Police Officers,
the insurance company has negotiated a settlement and they need consent to proceed and pay the
settlement. The settlement is for $7500.00, $7000.00 to be paid by the Townships insurance and
$500.00 to be paid by the State Police. It was mentioned that it would cost considerably more money to
defend this than it would to settle.
Chief Eckart stated that the public should know that the Township Police did everything by the book
with this incident. It was the State Police that made the mistake but he feels that what is best for the
Township should be done.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mr. Mullen to consent to Allied World to settle for
$7000.00. Motion carried.
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NEW BUSINESS:

2014 CONTRACT WITH JERRY WALLS:

A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mr. Mullen to approve Jerry Walls contract for 2014.
Motion carried.

SEWER FUND CD RENEWAL:

A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers to roll over the Sewer Fund CD with First
Columbia Bank & Trust Company. Motion carried.

APPROVAL OF GANNETT FLEMING INVOICE:

An invoice from Gannett Fleming was received for 12.48% of the total authorized fee for the
comprehensive Plan.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mr. Mullen to pay the Gannett Fleming invoice for
$2561.23. Motion carried.

FIRE COMPANY CONTRIBUTION & FIRE TAX:

Fire Chief Brian Fosse brought up questions concerning the new fire Tax. He understood that he was to
get the 2 mills, approximately $40,000 to $48,000 and the $7000 as received in previous years.
Mr. Hoover responded that the $7000 was to no longer be paid. He also suggested that a monthly
allotment could be given to the Fire Company for general monthly bills and larger bills and expenses be
submitted to the Board for approval.
Solicitor Roberts suggested that Chief Fosse submit a proposal of what the monthly bills are. He also
recommends that as little or no funds be dispensed until the Fire Tax monies are available.
It was suggested that the Board sit down with Chief Fosse to work the details out.

RIVER TOWNS MARATHON:

A request was made by the Montour Area Recreation Commission to hold their Annual River Towns
Marathon which goes through Montour Township.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mr. Mullen to approve the River Towns Marathon
request. Motion Carried.

CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER’S REPORT:

Already discussed.
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ZONING OFFICER’S REPORT:

Brad Prater, Zoning Office, submitted a written report for the month of February, 2014. He issued one
permit for occupancy and has 3 pending permits, the Sponenberg project, Zoning Hearing scheduled for
April 2, 2014, the Verizon Wireless project and the AT&T tower upgrade.

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT:

Mr. Mullen stated that the state has approved an increase of tax fund roads. Currently the Township
receives $49,390 Liquid fuels monies and $5000 from the Turnback Program. He also indicated that the
township has one load of salt left.

FLOOD REPORT – MARIANO PROPERTY:

Mr. Mullen reported that they are waiting for warmer temperatures and that the work will be done in
the spring.

COLUMBIA COUNTY LIQUID FUELS GRANT ASSISTANT PROGRAM:

Mike Hinkle, Road Foreman, met with Greg Dibble from PennDOT. They looked at Cross Road and
Tower Drive from Brobst Drive to the Hemlock Township line. This area will need a Full Depth
Reclamation, the road must be ground down 6 to 8 inches, then a 4 inch level of gravel, then 3 to 4
inches of asphalt. The estimate for this job is $267,000.00. The Township will ask the county for
$192,000.00 and fund $75,000.00 from the Township funds. The proposal for this is to be done by April.
Mike Hinkle stated that there is also a Federal Grant available. The criteria for this grant is based on the
income of the residents that live on the road. Someone will have to go door to door to collect the
information.

POLICE DEPARTMENT REPORT:

Police Chief Terry Eckart has submitted the following written report of activities for the month of
January, 2014:
Fines issued - $1,960.00 – Montour Township
$1,307.00 – Catawissa Township
15 Traffic Citations – Montour Township
13 Traffic Citations – Catawissa Township
4 Non-traffic Citations – Montour Township
2 Non-traffic Citation – Catawissa Township
3 Criminal Arrests – Montour Township
2 Criminal Arrests – Catawissa Township
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Police Chief Terry Eckart has submitted the following written report of activities for the month of
February, 2014:
Fines issued - $1,203.00 – Montour Township
$891.00 – Catawissa Township
9 Traffic Citations – Montour Township
10 Traffic Citations – Catawissa Township
4 Non-traffic Citations – Montour Township
1 Non-traffic Citation – Catawissa Township
4 Criminal Arrests – Montour Township
2 Criminal Arrests – Catawissa Township
Chief Eckart reported that they had a Meth Lab bust last month. The location of the Meth Lab was 790
feet from a school, the penalties for this will be heavier because it was less than 1000 feet from the
school. He also reported that the regular incident numbers are up.
Chief Eckart stated that he will be applying for an Aggressive Driving Grant. The Township will be
responsible for 10% of the cost, however there will most likely be $7,000 to $8,000 in fine money to
cover the Township’s share.
Chief Eckart mentioned that Mustang Sally’s is no longer a Cabaret, it is now for private parties.

2014 POLICE CONTRACTS:

A MOTION was made by Mr. Powers, seconded by Mr. Mullen to approve the 2014 Police Contracts for
Terry Eckart, Robert Anderson, Timothy Kiefaber and Rodney Witherite. Motion carried.

FIRE COMPANY REPORT:

Brian Fosse submitted a report of Fire Department Statistics for the month of February 2014. He stated
that he received an e-mail from Brenda Ramaley with Columbia County, stating that if anyone in the
Township wished to do any open burning, they will have to notify the county dispatch and they will in
turn notify the Fire Chief. He and the Fire Department will then go out to location to be sure they are
able to burn.

PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD:

Mr. Vanderpool stated that he did some calculating and he found that with the recent tax increase it is a
40% tax increase. Also from 2010 to 2014 there has been an 88% tax increase. Mr. Hoover responded
that the Township taxes have been below the average tax base and that the Township needed to
implement these increases.
Mr. Vanderpool also asked for clarification of what the Police health care costs are. He stated that the
initial cost given was $16,000.00. Mr. Vanderpool was given information that the cost is now
$23,244.00, that is approximately a $5,000.00 discrepancy and he would like to know why.
Chief Eckart responded that when he came to the Township with the Health Care proposal, the numbers
he had were preliminary numbers. When the proposal was accepted and submitted with all the
information, the $23,244.00 is what the final cost came out to be.
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GRANT FOR TOWER DRIVE ROAD REPAIRS:

A MOTION was made by Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers to approve the proposal for a Liquid fuels
Grant for $192,000.00 from Columbia County. Motion carried.

MEETING DATES:

Mr. Powers reported that the Montour Township Board of Supervisors will hold their next Monthly
Meeting on April 10, 2014, at 7:30 p.m.
There being no further business to discuss, the Meeting was adjourned at 10:45 p.m., on a MOTION of
Mr. Mullen, seconded by Mr. Powers. Motion carried.
Respectfully Submitted,
Joelene C. Sponenberg
Township Secretary
Theresa M. Hampton
Township Clerk
E:Mar13REG
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