JACKSON TOWNSHIP ONLINE NEWS
 

JACKSON TOWNSHIP NEWS
November 21,  2005

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HIGHLIGHTS FROM NOVEMBER 17th SUPERVISOR MEETING

~All motions for this meeting were unanimous by all three Supervisors.

~The Board approved a Mandatory Tap Ordinance for a Croyle Township Water Authority Project that affects 6 residences in Jackson Township along with some in Cambria & East Taylor Townships as well. The residents are already on the Croyle Township Water System and this project will replace 6" existing pipe with 8" pipe. The project also includes the installation of a new water tank. According to Jessica Sheets, Grant Coordinator of Innovative Consulting, each affected municipality must pass the Ordinance in order to qualify for grants that will fund the majority of the project.

~The Supervisors approved the subdivision of Brent Schmidt.

~The Board passed Ordinance # 137 which is an Amendment to the Jackson Township Zoning Ordinance. Two changes concern signs while one reduces the minimum new lot size in the Agricultural area from 2 acres to 1 acre.

~The Supervisors agreed to hire Attorney Calvin J. Webb at a rate of $125.00 per hour to write a Windmill Ordinance for Jackson Township. There currently is interest in Jackson Township by windmill developers. Attorney Webb successfully negotiated an Ordinance in Portage Township after much negotiations with the Township and developers.

~The Board authorized the Solicitor to file an injunction against Carl Laughard to remove a pre-existing home and single wide mobile  home from his property on Route 271 as conditioned by a previously issued zoning approval.

~The Supervisors sold a 1994 Ford 1 ton Township Truck to the Jackson-East Taylor Sewer Authority for the price of $1.00.

~The Board renewed Amfire Mining's road bond for another six month period to continue using 1.32 miles of Pike Road East.

~The Supervisors adopted a budget for 2006. The Budget is advertised and is on display at the Jackson Township Municipal Building at 513 Pike Road. The Budget approved is as follows:
General Fund-$1,102,240
State Fund-$140,630
Fire Hydrant Fund-$10,500
Rescue Fund-$8,500
Capital Reserve Fund-$1,661,435
Senior Center Fund-$57,900
No additional local tax increase is proposed for 2006.

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OCTOBER POLICE REPORT
The October, 2005 Police Report submitted by Police Chief Bob Fatula was presented. The figures for September were as follows:
911 Calls dispatched to Police-405
Reportable Incidents-33 broken down as follows:

~D.U.I. (Driving While Under the Influence)-7
~Harassment-6
~Assault-5
~Burglary-2
~Criminal Mischief-2
~Disorderly Conduct-2
~Theft of Service-2
~Threats-2
~Dog Law-1
~Indecent Exposure-1
~Public Drunkenness-1
~Theft-1
~Vehicle Theft-1
Non-Traffic Citations Issued-0
Traffic Citations Issued-19
Accidents Handled-5
Criminal Charges Filed-25 broken down as follows:

~D.U.I. (Driving While Under the Influence-)7
~Harassment-5
~Assault-3
~Criminal Mischief-2
~Disorderly Conduct-2
~Theft of Services-2
~Threats-2
~Dog Law-1
~Public Drunkenness-1

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RECREATION SURVEY RESULTS
As many of you know, the Jackson Township Recreation Commission is developing a Master Parks & Open Spaces Plan. In 2005 they received a $25,000 Planning Grant from the Pennsylvania Dept. Of Conservation & Natural Resources (DCNR). The grant is a matching grant and Pashek Associates has been doing the consulting work for this project. Once a plan is in place, Jackson Township will be looked upon more favorably for larger grants which can be used to develop actual recreational facilities at our parks. As part of this planning process a survey on recreation was mailed to 40% of the households in Jackson Township. The results of this
survey provides many interesting facts and also shows what forms of recreation the residents of the Township are interested in. According to the survey, 41% of the households have at least one member participating in organized sports. The number one factor that prevented residents from participating in recreational activities was not being interested in what activities were offered. One question asked was what type of activities do you wish were offered so you could take part in them. The responses with the highest number of residents interested were exercise & fitness, swimming, music & concerts, nature activities and bus trips. One question asked how many times a year does members of your household use local recreation facilities. The highest number of responses listed 1-6 times a year with the second highest 12 or more times a year. When asked which of the following facilities do you currently use, the highest number of responses was playgrounds at parks followed by playground at Jackson Elementary and then a tie for third place  listing the Mitchell Park ballfields and the Senior Center. A question asking what types of new facilities are needed showed that the number one response was an indoor swimming pool followed by permanent restrooms at parks, exercise & fitness facility, hiking trails, biking trails, community & recreation center and outdoor swimming pool. 86% of those surveyed said parks and recreation were important to them. 70% said cultural opportunities (art, theater, music) were important. 45% answered that they were not satisfied  with the overall parks and recreation opportunities available to them while 73% said they were satisfied with the current maintenance of existing facilities.

Of households responding to the survey, 44% of the family members were age 35-64 years. 17% were over 65, 15% were 20-34, 11% were 0-9, 7% were 10-14 and 6% were 15-19 years. 85% of the respondents have lived in the Township for more than 10 years followed by 10% living here less than 5 years and 5% for 5-10 years. When spending tax dollars, 44% of those surveyed felt that tax money should be spent on development of existing parks and 42% felt the same on trail development. 8% said they felt no money should be spent on recreation. When asked about public funds for parks and recreation, 52% felt they should be increased, 6% decreased and 33% stay the same. These results combined with input from public meetings and key person interviews will be used in developing the plan. Some of the ideas expressed at the public meeting held on October 19th at the Senior Center included having a recreation & community center, legal motorized vehicle trails, acquisition and development of old reclaimed rock dump, campgrounds, developing Loraine Park, areas with pavilions-restrooms-electric to rent, diversity ballfields for football and soccer, supporting freshwater streams for trout, year-round recreational programming, considering the waterline right-of-way for trail use to connect to the Ghost Town Trail and / or the Staple Bend Tunnel and a shooting range. Key person interviews were done with 15 people. Those selected were leaders of local sports organizations, municipal staff, teachers, pastors, local business owners, parents and staff from Senior Center. Some of the comments brought out from key person interviews were that the Township should not plan for more facilities than it can afford to build and maintain, don't duplicate facilities that exist in neighboring municipalities, should tap into the volunteer resources of local churches, patrol parks at night to prevent vandalism and that there is a need to keep young people from leaving the Township.

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OTHER JACKSON TOWNSHIP NEWS
~KEYSTONE RENEWABLE ENERGIES PROJECT
Work is continuing on a gas pipeline project that will convert landfill gas into usable gas for residential, commercial & industrial use. Pipeline is already being laid and the footer for the gas plant is in place waiting for steel to be erected.

~VETERANS DAY MONUMENT DEDICATION A SUCCESS
An estimated crowd of 400-500 turned out to help dedicate Jackson Township new Veterans Monument / Memorial on Veterans Day. There are 884 names on the monument with more in to come once they are verified. Among those speaking were Col. Marty Kuhar, State Rep. Tom Yewcic, Cambria County Commissioners, Jackson Township Supervisors, District Justice - Mary Ann Zanghi, Joe Baxter,
chairman of the Jackson Township Recreation Commission and Bill Kish. Frank Singel was the master of ceremonies. Loren Allbaugh
sang God Bless the USA while Betty Lybarger led the crowd in singing the Star Spangled Banner & God Bless America. Menoher VFW Post 155 honor rifle team attended. Pastor Wesley Lewis of the Vinco Brethren Church gave the invocation while Pastor Rick Clark of Pike Grace Brethren gave the benediction. 2 Veterans from each branch of service helped to raise the branch of service flags. Those same veterans also helped with the unveiling of the monument.

~RECYCLING BIN REFURBISHED
The green recycling bin that Jackson Township owns had to have a new bottom and side put on in order that it can continue to stay in
operation. The repairs were done at Waste Management's repair shop. The item this bin is used for the most is brown glass which
is not offered at the Cambria County Recycling Centers.

~COMPREHENSIVE PLAN SURVEYS NEED RETURNED
If you received a survey on the Comprehensive Plan in the last edition of the Jackson Township News, please take the time to complete it and return it to the Jackson Township Planning Commission, 513 Pike Road, Johnstown, PA 19509 in the postage paid envelope. If you did not receive a survey, please contact the office at 749-0725.


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Jackson Township Supervisors
Dave Hirko / Manager

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