May 29, 2003

The Jackson Township Supervisors held their regular meeting at 7:00 p.m. at the Jackson Township Municipal Building. Members present were Supervisors David Bracken, Bob Stephens and Bruce Baker along with Secretary-Treasurer / Manager Dave Hirko and Solicitor Bill Barbin. The meeting was called to order by David Bracken, Chairman, with the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag.

Board Roll Call was taken with all three Supervisors present.

Public Comments Concerning Agenda Items:
Ed Westrick commented on proposed Ordinance # 124 agreeing to join the Cambria-Somerset Codes Agency by saying it would add extra costs to the residents of the Township when putting a roof or siding on their home. He felt that if the State of Pennsylvania wants to have the Building Code, they should be the ones to enforce it.

Eugene Kist also commented on the advertisement of Ordinance # 124 and asked if this was advertising for bids or just to appoint the Cambria-Somerset Codes Agency. He asked if this was a local agency and who it consisted of. Supervisor Bracken responded by saying it was made up of surrounding boroughs and municipalities. Mr. Kist asked if we belonged to it. Solicitor Barbin said only after the Ordinance is advertised and then adopted. Kist then asked if there were any prices established. Barbin said the agreement provided for a $1,000 one time contribution to help start of the Agency. Kist then asked if the Board is familiar with this. Bracken said that the Board members went to many meetings. Kist commented that this was like jumping into a blind hole. Bracken responded that the Board pretty much knew what was going on with the Building Code. Kist then asked if he would put on a $2000 addition, what would it cost him. Supervisor Stephens said he attended several meetings and no rates or inspectors were established at this time and everything was up in the air. He went on to say the State is giving each municipality the chance to "opt in" or "opt out". Stephens said that to his knowledge no vote was taken on this yet.

Will Michaels said that the Uniform Construction Code has been worked on since 1999 and nobody knows whats in it. He felt that the if the State of Pennsylvania imposes it on January 1st, then the State should enforce it and the Township should have nothing to do with it and it will harm us. He said we have to tell the State to keep their nose out of it and he didnít care what anyone said about not getting a bunch of grants. He said somebody has to stand up to tell them how the people feel.

Debra Nagle said she had read an article in the newspaper and that Nick Bailey was a local contact person for the Cambria-Somerset area and he would be happy to answer anyoneís questions on the State Building Code. She went on to say that if we go with the Cambria-Somerset Code Agency it would be cheaper for the Township and better than leaving the State rule with a stricter code.

Will Michaels said the State couldnít put any more cost on the residents than anyone else because it would be discrimination. He said this was a mixed up affair and nobody knows what is going on. He said the legislatures that passed it have no idea whatís going on and they are in a world of their own.

Ed Westrick asked if a special speaker could come in and address the Township residents and if the Board could hold off on this issue until more information was given. Supervisor Stephens said he was to at least 6 different PSATS meetings concerning the Uniform Construction Code. He said that at the last meeting, they were informed that the UCC was passed by the State Legislature in 1999 and since then it has been postponed several times for various reasons. He said most likely it would be implemented on January 1st and felt it would be postponed from that date. He said there were 56 inspectors and there were 67 counties and they were supposed to give a 48-hour "turn around" for service to applicants. He said he attended the last four meetings of the Cambria County Sewage Enforcement Agency who is proposing the new Building Codes Agency. He said there were 17 municipalities involved in the Sewage Agency and if we would go in with them, we would only be one of the 17 so realistically we would not have much say as to how things are conducted. He said you couldnít get a straight answer from anyone on the State level in what the Code says today. He added that the State would have ultimate control over us and we would have little repercussions to control our own destiny. He said if we would accept this Code and pass this Ordinance we would be assuming all liability and would have to carry our own insurance. He said that similar codes were implemented in Southern New Jersey and they started out with $600 to $800 for six inspections and in some localities they now pay $6000 to $8000 dollars for up to 17 inspections on new homes. Eugene Kist stated that the Code would hurt everyone and it was like jumping in a blind hole. Stephens said he was suspicious and was not personally buying into this at this time.

Baker, second Stephens to approve the minutes of the April 24th meeting. Vote-3 yes.

Township Financial Report:







$      29,476.69

$ 105,719.70

$    55,777.59

$         79,346.31


$ 1,145,521.90

$   50,188.27

$              .00

$    1,195,710.17


$    134,211.08

$             .00

$              .00

$       134,211.08


$      37,774.56

$     2,375.00

$      5,404.81

$         34,744.75

Baker, second Bracken to approve the bills from April 25 to May 29, 2003. Vote-Baker & Bracken-yes, Stephens-no due to pending litigation.

General Fund

Highway Aid Fund

Senior Center Fund

$            71,180.96

$                         .00

$                    6,951.99

Township Police Report
The April, 2003 Police Report submitted by Police Chief Bob Fatula was presented. The figures were as follows: 911 Calls dispatched to Police were 348. Reportable Incidents were 25 broken down as follows: Criminal Mischief-8, Domestic Violence-5, Harassment-4, DUI (Driving While Under the Influence)-3, Theft-3, Assault-1 and Burglary-1. Non-Traffic Citations Issued-1. Traffic Citations Issued-187. Traffic Arrests-5. Accidents Handled-10. Criminal Charges Filed were 7 broken down as follows: DUI (Driving While Under the Influence)-3, Criminal Mischief-2, Assault-1 and Domestic Violence-1.

Letter from Jon Wiese
, Project Manager of Conectiv Energy. Mr. Wiese explained that the proposed Hinckston Run Power Plant Project was cancelled due to economic conditions, downturn in the economy and the unprecedented volatility in the gas and oil industry. He expressed his gratitude to Mr. Hirko and the Board of Supervisors for the unwavering support they received from Jackson Township throughout the development of the plant project and said Jackson Township stood out in terms of efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and follow-through on commitments.

Letter of resignation from Marty Kuhar of the Jackson Township Recreation Commission.

Letter from the East Taylor-Jackson Boosters Association requesting a donation from Jackson Township to help support the 2003 Little League Season.

Letter from the Jackson Township Volunteer Fire Company requesting help in paying for or getting a loan at no interest to pay for the fire apparatus needed to outfit the new Rescue / Fire truck which would cost $99,450.00.

New Business:
Stephens, second Baker to accept with regret the resignation of Marty Kuhar from the Jackson Township Recreation Commission. Vote-3 yes

Motion Stephens, second Baker on approving a contribution of $1,000.00 to the East Taylor-Jackson Little League Boosters to support the 2003 season. Vote-3 yes.

Motion Baker, second Stephens on transferring $ 4,800.00 from the Capital Reserve Fund to the General Fund - $3,100.00 for Barnes Saly CPAís 2002 Township Audit, $700.00 for work done by P. J. Lehman Engineers to comply with new stormwater management requirements, and annual donation of $1,000.00 to the East Taylor-Jackson Little League Boosters. Vote-3 yes.

Motion Baker, second Bracken on transferring $ 2,160.00 from the Capital Reserve Fund to the Senior Center Fund - $2,160.00 for security system installed at Magistrates Office by Sporyís Locksmith. Supervisor Stephens commented that it was his understanding that the Township owns the building where Mary Ann Zanghi rents space for the District Magistrates Office. Supervisor Bracken said that the money is paid directly to the Township and deposited in the Senior Center Fund. Stephens asked why it didnít show up on the monthly reports. Manager Hirko pointed out that the Senior Center Fund had itís own separate set of reports apart from the General Fund. Vote-Baker & Bracken-yes, Stephens-no.

Motion Stephens, second Baker on approving the time sheets for April 13, 2003 to April 26, 2003, April 27, 2003 to May 10, 2003 and for May 11, 2003 to May 24, 2003. Vote-3 yes.

Open bids received for paving projects. The following paving bids were received on 2,139 tons of ID3 wearing course in place and 565 tons of ID2 wearing course in place: Quaker Sales-$ 99,959.10, New Enterprise-$ 96,524.65, HRI Inc.- $101,678.45, Derry Construction- $111,336.15 and Grannas Brothers- $ 90,391.07

Open bids received for chipping projects. The following chipping bids were received on 166,998 square yards of single seal coat in place: Quaker Sales- $110,218.68, HRI Inc.- $ 93,184.88, New Enterprise-$ 90,345.92 and Russell Standard at $ 88,007.95. Supervisor Bracken said the bids for paving and chipping would be reviewed and that a special meeting would be called to award the bids for paving and chipping.

Motion Baker, second Bracken to approve Resolution to authorize the Cambria-Somerset Codes Agency to administer the State Uniform Construction Code. Supervisor Stephens said there shouldnít be any rush to do this being it doesnít take affect till January 1, 2004. He said everyone needs to look into this and that there should be public meetings to keep people aware of what is transpiring at the State level and what the changes are. He said we are only hearing from the State the positive side and that everything has a negative side too and that we are accepting all liability for this in his opinion. He said other Township Supervisors who have already "opted in" are having second thoughts on the Construction Code. He said the County Code Agency would like to get the funds to get things going to create their own agenda but asked if the County agenda is in the best interest of our Township. He said we could do this in November or December if itís going into effect in January. Supervisor Baker said the Board of Supervisors has an obligation to do what is in the best interest of the Township and by "opting out" and giving the State complete control is not the best option in his opinion and that his vote would be yes on this item. Vote-Baker & Bracken-yes, Stephens-no

Motion Baker, second Bracken to authorize the advertising of Ordinance # 124 to enter into an Inter-Municipal Agreement with the Cambria-Somerset Codes Agency to administer the State Uniform Construction Code. Vote-Baker & Bracken-yes, Stephens-no

Motion Stephens, second Baker to amend landfill agreement to allow two more hours per day for "covering work" to comply with PaDEP permit modification. Vote-3 yes.

Motion Baker, second Bracken to authorize the hiring of a part-time Secretary for the Jackson Township Zoning Hearing Board. Supervisor Stephens questioned if the money would come from the Zoning Hearing Board Expenses. Manager Hirko said it would come out of the line item in the budget for their expenses. Vote-3 yes.

Public Comments:
Bob Albright
commented on trucks using jake brakes on Route 22. He said there is an Ordinance on the books since 1981 and it should be enforced. Supervisor Stephens asked what could be done about it. Supervisor Bracken cautioned that the Township could bear responsibility if there was an accident and a truck driver didnít use itís jake brakes. Mr. Albright said lots of other municipalities enforce ordinances on jake brakes. Supervisor Baker said he would check into it and get back to him once he had something concrete. Stephens said some jake brakes are noisier than others are and maybe it could be looked into at the State level. Barbin said that if a truck driver was faced with an emergency, he should use itís jake brakes and that good judgement should be used. He said the signs could be put up and that perhaps we should check with Bob Mills of PennDOT

Linda Lesko spoke on getting local calling access from the 322 phone exchange to the 472 / 471 exchanges in Ebensburg. She said that she had received information from Judge Corbert and the PUC Panel and that they were very favorable. She said that although they wanted to accommodate the request, there was a problem in that no time-table was given. She suggested that residents contact the PUC and tell them that they want the local calling access for the 2003 / 2004 school year. She went on to say that people in the 472 / 471 exchange could call the 322 exchange for years but it should work both ways for the toll free calling. Ms. Lesko stated the Rep. Tom Yewcic, Sen. John Wozniak and the Central Cambria School District officials have been very supportive and that now is the time to keep pushing for this.

Eugene Kist asked on the 20th of May at the Jackson Township Fire Hall who owned the property. Solicitor Barbin said the Fire Company made up of itís members owned the property. Mr. Kist said that there were signs posted on the property with balloons from the "Neighbors" group and that he asked Mr. Barry Rouzer if they could be there. He also asked Chief Bob Fatula about the signs and said he took videos of them. Mr. Kist then asked if the Township was picking up garbage. He went on to say that he heard that the Township had picked up a hot water tank off of a local golf driving range. Kist said he had four tires that needed to be picked up from his property and wanted to know when the Township would pick them up.

Steve Yurasek commented that he owns the former "Gulf Oil Property". He said the 45 acre property encompasses 4 zones including Agriculture, Residential, Commercial and Industrial. He stated that he wrote a letter to the Board requesting it be rezoned to all Commercial and Industrial but Mr. Burkey didnít approve of it so it was turned down. He wanted to know what portion of the property was what zone. He said he talked to Attorney Russell who told him to go to the Cambria County Planning Commission where he talked to Mr. Begae? Mr. Begae said there was no engineer that drew up the map and it was impossible to tell where a starting point was. He asked where he would start to survey the property and it was important that the portions of the property in the Agricultural and Residential zones would be non-conforming properties. He said he needed something in writing that would say that they are non-conforming properties. He said he hoped he wouldnít have to take it to court to find out where to start surveying. Solicitor Barbin said Mr. Yurasek was entitled to an accurate drawing of the boundaries from the Township but he should put that request in writing. Mr. Yurasek then asked why the Zoning Officer couldnít have an office with office hours 2 or 3 days a week where citizens could come in and ask questions. Supervisor Stephens said the map should be drawn in infinite detail with boundaries established to eliminate future problems that could arise. Barbin said if a property is zoned part Commercial, the entire property is entitled to be used as a Commercial property. He went on to say that he is not aware of any surrounding municipality that records all non-conforming properties.

Will Michaels stated that he didnít appreciate the Board moving forward on Ordinance # 124 and that the citizens of the Township are being done an injustice. He also said he felt the Fire Company should receive a donation from the Township.

Elmer Grove from the Jackson Township Vol. Fire Company said they would receive the new truck at the end of July. Supervisor Stephens asked what was in the Truck Fund and Mr. Grove replied $23,000.

Jack DíArmin said he was opposed to the Ordinance and he had moved to Texas but he still is a property owner in Jackson Township. He said they are less fun in San Antonio than here in Jackson. He said a person came to his house and said he didnít want to see me get hurt on 2 separate occasions. He said he didnít intend to pursue it but said it could be misconstrued as terroristic threats. He went on to say it was a Public Official of the Township.

An announcement was made that the next Supervisors Meeting would be held on Thursday, June 26, 2003 at 7:00 pm at the Jackson Township Municipal Building.

Baker, second Stephens to adjourn the meeting at 8:20 pm. Vote-3 yes.

Respectfully submitted,
David M. Hirko, Secretary