Regular Meeting – March 12, 2019
MILLHEIM BOROUGH COUNCIL
225 EAST MAIN STREET
P.O. BOX 421
MILLHEIM, PA 16854
PHONE (814) 349-5350 FAX (814) 349-5733
March 12, 2019
President Al Ilgen called the meeting to order with the pledging of allegiance at 7:00 PM. Council members in attendance: Al Ilgen, Patty Beckenbaugh, Beth Cowher, Robert Zeigler, Denise Immel, Assistant Secretary/Treasurer, John Miller, Solicitor, also in attendance John Segursky representing Uni-Tec. Absent Mayor Lauralee Snyder
Citizens Present: Carl Rote, Beth Bartley, Doug Nicholas, Vince Smith, Wayne and Judy Shawver, Stephen Myers and Corby Crater.
Carl Rote expressed concerns on the lack of snow removal from the sides of street, especially in front of the Post Office and bank explaining that accessibility was next to impossible because of the packed snow banks. Beth Bartley backed Mr. Rote on the snow removal issues throughout town making accessibility to sidewalks difficult. Ms. Bartley also expressed her concerns on the lack of snow removal from sidewalks within the prescribed time frames again making it difficult for residents or visitors to navigate the downtown district. Judy Shawver agreed with Ms. Bartley and Mr. Rote adding that in prior years the town’s appearance has never looked this bad. Ms. Shawver also expressed safety concerns not only on Main Street but also on Penn Street.
President Ilgen explained the Main Street (Route 45) is a road maintained by PennDot, the Borough employees have been removing the snow in the allowed parking zones but not in the no parking areas as a courtesy to the residents and business owners. He will instruct the employees going forward to remove all snow from the business district of Main Street, and will ask them to work on the ice pack in front of the Post Office. The sidewalks will still be the responsibility of the resident or business owner.
Doug Nicholas questioned why the Borough employees removed the snow from the Elk Creek Bridge but not from edge of sidewalks. President Ilgen explained that this is an arrangement with PennDot thru our agility agreement.
Steve Myers suggested using the parking fines collected by the Borough to pay the additional expense of snow removal.
Corby Crater expressed concerns with not only the snow removal but also with the allowed parking on Penn Street. Mr. Crater stated he feels the current situation is not only a hazard for motorist but also a safety issue for children and residents on Penn Street. He has requested better enforcement by our code officers. Also would like to see parking prohibited on all of Penn Street. Mr. Crater also in concerned with the condition of the road surface on Penn Street and with the drainage issues.
President Ilgen explained that council had previously surveyed the residents of Penn Street on a no parking rule for Penn Street. The residents voted against the ruling. Penn Street like Main Street is a PennDot road, residents may and should contact PennDot with their issues and concerns. Borough Council has addressed the drainage issues with PennDot. PennDot was on Penn Street 2 or 3 weeks ago survey for the drainage issue. Council feels this will be addressed in 2021 during the Race Street bridge project. Residents and business owner may assist Code Enforcement by taking pictures of offense, picture must include a date it is recommended that you also include yourself in the picture. Parking violations need to include a picture of the license plate. Residents and business owners may be required to testify if the violation is contested.
Mr. Crater and Ms. Shawver both spoke on the lack of maintenance on the alleys on Penn Street, stating pot holes that are filled by Borough employees just to wash out during the next hard rain. Mr. Crater wondered if residents could fix the alleys themselves. Per Solicitor Miller this is not permissible.
Mr. Myers questioned the possibility of turning alleys over to the property owners. Solicitor Miller explained the Borough Council would need to discuss and vote on the possibility.
Councilmen Zeigler suggested since residents cannot fix the alleys themselves, maybe they would consider making donations to the Borough specifying the funds be used for alley improvement.
President Ilgen acknowledged the issues with the alleys within the Borough and will address this with maintenance crew, explained that unfortunately the Borough does not have the funds to pave all alleys in the Borough and that our request for funding has been declined. Council is currently looking at the possibility of being able to funds 3 projects on our own.
Vince Smith addressed the issue on the land he has recently purchased within the Borough, prior to closing he had spoken to Penns Valley Code explaining his intention to build not only a house but a barn to house a few cattle, at that time he was told it was ok to do so. He went thru with the closing and then received a call from Penns Valley Code telling him that upon further review the ordinance is written that the barn would need to be a 100 feet from any dwelling or property line. Mr. Smith questioned if an exception or variance would be considered.
President Ilgen believes the property to be zoned agriculture and that a variance or exception could be requested. It was suggested Mr. Smith have his attorney review the ordinance to determine which avenue is best, a variance or an exception. Solicitor Miller added that since the land is currently being used to graze cattle, with no barn, this practice could continue since is does not change the land use.
Code Enforcement/HARB/Planning Commission Reports:
The Code Enforcement report was reviewed with no questions or concerns.
No reports from HARB or Planning.
Clean up for the two snow storms was done as quickly as possible, parked cars on Main Street still remains a problem as crew need to work around said cars. The wind storm snapped a large pine tree by the baseball field, removal will be done as soon as ice and water recede. Looking to do spring leaf collection and brush removal in mid April.
New Action Items:
John Segursky reported that G & R Charles is going to start working on the SR0445 Waterline Replacement on March 25, 2019.
Uni-Tec is continuing to work on the Water Allocation permit, an email has been received expressing concerns over the calculation to justify the current allocation remaining in place. They are asking for any agreements to serve Penn Township. There is no formal agreement it is good prudent planning that since the permit is for 25 years to include a community that abuts the Borough that has no other adjacent water source. Uni-Tec will bring a proposal for the required pass by flow measuring device to the April meeting.
The annual Wasteload Management Report is being addressed, Roy Rupert is to compile all of the necessary information for his signature so the submission can be completed before the deadline.
Report of annual municipalities and fire company meeting:
The four local companies have received a grant to purchase uniform breathing apparatus making covering each other territory more feasible. Millheim Fire Company has purchased an industrial washer and dryer to launder the firefighting protection gear effectively.
Millheim Fire Company requested the Borough to consider increasing the Fire Tax from .5 mills to 1.0 mills. The increase in tax would be used to build a surplus funding for the Fire Company. After some discussion it was decided to have the Fire Tax remain at .5 mills, as the Fire Company can request additional funds from the Borough Fire Tax account if an emergency arises.
A motion was made by Robert Zeigler seconded by Patty Beckenbaugh to adopt Resolution 2019-2 authorizing the payment of the Borough portion on the 2019 Workers Compensation in the amount $2,417.80 for the Millheim Fire Company. Motion carried.
A motion was made by Beth Cowher seconded by Robert Zeigler to grant the Millheim Fire Company’s request for street and alley closure to accommodate the annual carnival and parade. Motion carried.
Tracey Leitzel has resigned her position effective April 15, 2019. President Ilgen will email an ad to be placed in the Valley Grapevine and the Centre County Gazette. The position will also be posted on the Borough webpage.
PV Regional Planning Comprehensive Plan:
Council members were requested to review information as presented in packet and forwarded recommendations to Mayor Snyder.
Old Action Items:
Ms. Grove has completed one on one training with Denise Immel. The website is live and past council minutes are being loaded as time permits. Ms. Grove has also held a session for President Ilgen and Councilmen Zeigler with Denise Immel in attendance.
Funds Balance Transfers/CD – tabled for later meeting
Radar Speed Signs:
Two companies have been contacted and quotes received, Traffic Logic and Traffic Safety Warehouse. Only one company has a representative in the area to meet and discuss options with council.
Denise Immel, President Ilgen and Mayor Snyder met on March 09, 2019 and worked for 4 hours reviewing files and documents refiling and labeling time frames for destruction. The process is an ongoing one and will require additional sessions to complete.
Unit-Tec – NPDES permit:
A motion was made by Robert Zeigler seconded by Beth Cowher to have Uni-Tec prepare the NPDES permit renewal for a fee of $4,500.00. Motion carried.
Committee and Mayor Repots:
Beth Cowher has spoken with Robin Hanselman on the repair of the front step. He believes the bottom step can be repaired for $600.00. Ms. Cowher met with another gentleman who feels the first two steps should be replaced and he can repair them for $900.00. Council requested Ms. Cowher receive written quotes from both parties with Mr. Hanselman’s proposal to include the first two steps. Information will be reviewed with Justin Kerstetter.
Robert Zeigler suggested that Council add to the agenda a Citizens Input time at the end of agenda as well as in the beginning. Additional time for Citizens Input will be added to the April agenda and going forward.
A motion was made by Robert Zeigler seconded by Patty Beckenbaugh to approve the February 16, 2018 minutes and the February 22, 2019 minutes with the correct spelling of Cowher and Creek. Motion carried.
A motion was made by Beth Cowher seconded by Patty Beckenbaugh to approve the Financial Accounts report. Motion carried.
A motion was made by Beth Cowher seconded by Robert Zeigler to adjourn. Motion carried.
Meeting adjourned at 9:02 PM.
Denise Immel Assistant Secretary/Treasurer