July 24, 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:

Baker, second Stephens to approve the minutes of the June 26th meeting. Vote-3 yes.

Township Financial Report:







$ 123,637.59

$ 59,955.29

$ 53,954.00

$ 129,638.88



$ 44,940.18

$ 99,450.00



$ 134,113.50

$ 3,833.86

$ 13,806.79

$ 124,140.57


$ 36,983.11

$ 2,404.70

$ 3,783.93

$ 35,603.88

Baker, second Bracken to approve the bills from June 27th through July 24th, 2003. Vote-Bracken & Baker-yes, Stephens-abstained due to pending litigation.

General Fund

Highway Aid Fund

Senior Center Fund

$ 53,954.00

$ 13,806.79

$ 3,783.93

Township Police Report
The June, 2003 Police Report submitted by Police Chief Bob Fatula was presented: 911 Calls dispatched to Police were 280. Reportable Incidents were 38 broken down as follows: Criminal Mischief-10, Theft-7, DUI (Driving While Under the Influence)-4, Harassment by Communications-4, Assault-2, Burglary-2, Disorderly Conduct-2, Public Drunkenness-2, Vehicle Theft-2, Hit and Run-1, Terroristic Threats-1 and Underage Drinking-1. Non-Traffic Citations Issued-5. Traffic Citations Issued-187. Accidents Handled-3. Criminal Charges Filed were 13 broken down as follows: DUI (Driving While Under the Influence)-4, Assault-2, Disorderly Conduct-2, Public Drunkenness-2, Hit and Run-1, Theft-1 and Underage Drinking-1.

Letter from Miners Community Food Pantry
announcing a new State Program for Senior Citizens 60 years of age or older who make $980.00 or less per month. The letter stated what food could be received and asked the Township to publicize the program to citizens.

Letter form Miners Community Food Pantry requesting that the Jackson Township Board of Supervisors consider a donation to keep the pantry operating for one month which is about $1,000. The letter also stated that about 300 families are served each month or about 1,039 people, half of which are from Jackson Township.

Motion Stephens, second Baker to make a donation of $1,000.00 to the Miners Community Food Pantry. Vote-3 yes.

Letter from the Jackson Twp. – East Taylor Sewer Authority concerning a Board vacancy created due to the passing away of Mr. Don Karlinsey who served the past 11 years. The Sewer Board was requesting that Mr. John Hamula of 540 Pike Road be appointed to serve the remaining term of Mr. Karlinsey through the end of the year 2003.

Motion Stephens, second Baker to accept the recommendation of the Sewer Board to appoint John Hamula to serve out the remaining term of Don Karlinsey through the end of the year 2003. Vote-3 yes.

Old Business:

New Business
Brian Feist
, Emergency Management Specialist for Cambria County spoke on the revised Emergency Management Plan which every municipality in the County was asked to adopt. He said the plan gives guidelines to insure the safety of the community. He said that municipalities should keep their old plan but supplement it with the revised plan which consisted of easy-to-use forms to follow that are also available in computer format. He said that the State of Pennsylvania was encouraging all Counties in the Commonwealth to adopt the revised plan. Delores Kimbel asked what locations were shelters within Jackson Township. Mr. Feist said they were listed in the plan including all the shelter locations for Cambria County. Supervisor Bracken read the shelter locations for Jackson Township. Feist went on to say that the revised plan also included a comprehensive resource guide for the entire County that could be used in the event of an emergency. Ed Westrick asked if there were any provisions to get information out to everyone in the event of a disaster. Feist replied that there were communication plans set up to broadcast over television, radio, scanners, etc. Westrick asked what would happen if the power went out. Feist said that citizens should always have food and a battery operated radio on hand in case of a major disaster situation. Will Michaels asked if there were any alarms in case a television or radio wasn’t turned on. Feist said sirens could be used but in a large Township such as Jackson, it would be impossible for everyone to hear them. Steve Yurasek commented on air raid sirens that were used during World War II to alert people. Feist said the primary communications used now are television and radio. Will Michaels asked what would happen if all the media outlets blew up at once. Feist said that would be highly unlikely and that even during the ’77 flood, radio stations were still on the air. Supervisor Stephens expressed concern over the responsibility that the Supervisors have for the safety of the Township citizens. He said he wanted to have an open meeting on the plan but it never materialized. Stephens added that by only having the revised plan for about a week, it was impossible to digest with all the changes. He asked whether any of the Jackson Township shelters were marked as such. Feist replied no due to the fact that in the event of an emergency, people should be directed to a shelter only if it was open and staffed either by the Red Cross, the Fire Company, etc. Stephens then asked if Jackson Township had an Inter-Governmental Mutual Aid Support Agreement in place. He also said that the Emergency Management Coordinator is appointed by the Governor and is to act on behalf of the elected officials of the Township. Feist said the Township appoints the Coordinator and then the Governor approves it. He added that there is on-going training they must have as the E.M.C. He complimented Jackson Township on being the first municipality this year to get their updates to the County and said your coordinator is "on the ball". Stephens then asked if the E.M.C. representing the State assumes any and all liabilities and said it would be prudent to know what is in the agreement prior to voting on it. He also asked what the cost would be to initiate and maintain an Emergency Operations Center. Feist said the Township Building would most likely be the Operations Center being there were phones and office equipment available. He added that the revised plan allows more flexibility in having a Center anywhere within the Township. He went on to say that costs would be minimal and that the Township assumes responsibilities although there may be certain funding that could be available through various sources. Supervisor Bracken said that people at the Fire Company train continuously as well as the Police Department to handle emergency situations. Feist said the Township Government is ultimately in charge but should delegate power to others where it would make sense to do so. Eugene Kist asked if there were any list of disabled or elderly people living alone who needed help that the Fire Company or Police could pick up in an emergency situation. Feist said that one of the problems was maintaining an up-to-date list and that was another reason for primarily using the media to get the word out. Feist thanked the Supervisors and once again complimented the Emergency Management Coordinator on submitting the necessary forms and updates as well as the Jackson Township Office in getting paperwork in for receiving reimbursement from the President’s Day Snowstorm.

The Supervisors reviewed the Wilson Subdivision received from the Planning Commission which recommended it not be approved based on four questionable items they had listed in a letter. Solicitor Barbin said that there had to be a acknowledgement letter or statement from the Sewage Enforcement Officer. He also said there needed to be a statement on the subdivision stating that the Township would not maintain the private road as well as having Lot # 2 marked as a non-building lot.

Motion Bracken, second Stephens to send the Wilson Subdivision back to the Planning Commission for changes to be made. Vote-Bracken & Stephens-yes, Baker-abstained

Motion Baker, second Bracken to approve Resolution 10-03 which will waive driveway permit fees on existing driveways retroactive to January 1, 2003. Supervisor Stephens questioned whether it was ok to go back to a particular date and what if someone got one prior to that date. Solicitor Barbin said it was ok as long as your judgement was with good motive and not to discriminate against a particular individual. He added that the beginning of the year is usually a good time to pick a date being that fees and any changes are usually set at that time. Supervisor Baker pointed out that driveway permits would still be required for existing driveway alternations but that now they wouldn’t have a fee unless it was a new driveway. The Board then took a vote. Vote-3 yes.

Motion Baker, second Bracken to approve Resolution 11-03 adopting Revised Emergency Management Plan of Cambria County. Supervisor Stephens said he was delighted and somewhat relieved to see the State and County exercise leadership in this matter. He said the manner in which it was done concerned him and only having a week was not enough time to have all questions and concerns answered. He recommended that the vote be tabled until a special meeting was held in order that all citizens had a right to review the plan and have sufficient time to ask questions and get proper answers. A vote was taken after Mr. Stephens comments. Bracken & Baker-yes, Stephens-no

Motion Stephens, second Baker to approve one-year extension of the Winter Maintenance Agreement for Benshoff Hill Road with PennDot. Vote-3 yes.

Motion Baker, second Bracken on transferring $3989.50 from the Capital Reserve Fund to the General Fund - $2000.00 to EMC Insurance for deductible on lawsuit and $1989.50 to Plunkett & Cooney for lawsuit legal expenses. Vote-Bracken & Baker-yes, Stephens abstained to due to a possible conflict of interest and pending litigation.

Motion Stephens, second Baker on approving the time sheets from June 22, 2003 through July 5, 2003 and July 6, 2003 through July 19, 2003. Vote-3 yes.

Other New Business
Baker, second Stephens to cancel the Board of Supervisors Meeting scheduled for July 31, 2003. Vote-3 yes.

Public Comments:
Will Michaels
expressed his displeasure with the Board passing the Uniform Construction Code Ordinance at the last meeting. He said the Board didn’t even know where it was at now and it would probably be delayed for at least 2 years and who knows what all will be changed in it. He said that he didn’t feel the Board put much thought into it.

Eugene Kist asked if Jackson Township responded to City of Johnstown emergencies. Supervisor Bracken answered yes, if they’re called. Kist then asked if the City of Johnstown responded to Jackson Township emergencies. Bracken said yes, if they were called. Kist then stated that Bracken called people "out of order" at the meeting and that other people who spoke up including the police weren’t called out of order. He said he was intimidated and said you people should be ashamed of yourselves. He added that having an officer at the meeting was very intimidating and he didn't like it.

An announcement was made that the next Supervisors Meeting would be held on Thursday, August 28, 2003 at 7:00 pm at the Jackson Township Municipal Building.

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

Respectfully submitted,
David M. Hirko, Secretary