BY STACI WILSON
The mapping of natural gas distribution lines in New Milford is nearly complete, reported Leatherstocking’s Katrina Colvin-Stilts at the Thursday, May 7 borough council meeting.
She also said the company plans to hold an “expo” in early to mid-June in New Milford but a date has not yet been finalized.
Councilwoman Teri Gulick asked about the various charges that appear on the natural gas bill.
Colvin-Stilts explained that because natural gas service is regulated by the state’s Public Utility Commission, it is required that the bill be broken down by the line item. “We’re transparent,” she said.
One charge that appears on the bill for 10 years (from the time service is available) is the socialized cost of putting the distribution lines in. And although people who hook up to the natural gas service after 10 years won’t pay that monthly fee, they will be required to pay out-of-pocket for the additional pipe or possible mains necessary for bringing gas to their home or business. Those who are signed up now do not pay those cost.
Colvin-Stilts said she would plan to return to the June meeting.
The bulk of the meeting was spent discussing warm weather plans and projects.
Mayor Scott Smith said the trees on the bank the border SR 492 at the Blue Ridge Park were being cut down by baseball team members. A control burned – with oversight from Columbia Hose Co. – would be utilized to take care of any remaining underbrush on the bank.
Grant funds are in place for the $29,000 Peck Hill project which is expected to be advertised for bids in early May.
The Susquehanna County Housing & Revelopment Authority plans to redo some of the drainage at the senior housing property. The plan is to fix the water issues with a swail, Councilman Larry White said, adding that the work may also help with the borough’s run-off issues in that area.
The borough has received only 50 to 60 of the planning surveys that were mailed to residents. Council members touched on some of the survey results noting they felt ones received were “skewed.”
“The feedback is not real positive,” Councilman Rick Ainey said.
Secretary Amy Hine said many comments noted the need for a grocery store in the town.
Gulick, who is also a member of the planning commission, reminded council members that the commission would meet Wednesday (May 13) for more work on the comprehensive plan. Ainey said the meetings were very informative regarding work on the borough’s comprehensive plan and said all council members should try to attend.
In the past few months, borough council has been looking at meet its storage needs. The fire company has some storage to spare and has said it will let the borough use the space. The two entities will work out an agreement.
Ainey also said the fire company is looking to move the fire hall “down the street,” and if that happened, according to research, the property would revert to the borough.
Council awarded a bid for building repairs at the borough building at a cost of $9,375.
Amy Conrad was hired as the pool manager for the season, based on a recommendation from the Parks and Recreation board. Board president Ken Carey reported that most of the lifeguards from last year were returning to work this season, and two others also expressed interest.
An alternative to the $900 metal trash cans for the parks will be purchased. The Rec board found a commercial trash receptacle as an alternative to the ones discussed last month by council. Four cans will be ordered and placed in the parks to see if they will meet the needs.
An estimate for replacing some fencing at Blue Ridge Park came in at $2,000, a figure Ainey said he thought was too much money for what they were looking for.
He priced out split rail fencing, as well as the rental cost of an auger and found that with volunteer hours, the borough could replace more of the fencing for less.
The Blue Ridge Fine Arts Department will hold a concert in Midtown Park on Wednesday, May 20. The group was given permission to set up a small propane grill for concessions at the concert.
The contract with the Montrose Police Dept. will need to be renegotiated this year. Smith requested a copy of the current contract, which Hine said she has on file in the office.
Smith also said that recently, although not scheduled to be working in the borough at that time, the police were requested to respond to a domestic dispute. State police requested for Montrose to handle the call, but the municipal force was not able to at that time. Smith noted that neither the local agency, not the state police responded to the call.