DA Klein: Text tipline coming soon

Susquehanna County District Attorney Robert Klein told New Milford Borough Council the local fight against drugs needs the community’s “eyes and ears.”
Klein attended the Nov. 2 council meeting, as did Great Bend Borough Police Chief Jon Record. New Milford contracts with Great Bend Borough for part-time police coverage.
Record said some concerned residents had provided information on the District Attorney’s office Crime Tipline and told council police were investigating those matters.
Residents can provide information about potential crime activity anonymously online by clicking on the “Fight Crime” splat on the county website, www.susqco.com.
But Klein announced a new text message reporting tool would soon be available in the county in mid-November.
Once launched, residents can send a text message to “67283” as they encounter any suspicious activity. Those sending in a tip are asked to type the keyword “Drugs” and then a detailed tip.
Klein said an official announcement would be made when the feature is up and running.
Mayor Scott Smith asked about the opioid epidemic in the county, wondering if the proximity of Interstate 81 added to the problem in the area.
Klein responded, “It’s hard to quantify.” He noted that in 2016 over 1,363,000 oxycodone and/or hydrocodone pills were prescribed to Susquehanna County residents.
He advocated for the early education of youth about the dangers of drug use; and getting prescription medications off the street utilizing the secure drop boxes and drug ‘take-back’ days.
At the Oct. 28 prescription drug take-back event, Klein said over 80 pounds of prescription drugs were collected. He also said a drop box is being added at the Great Bend Police Department.
In other business, the borough received one bid for the Peck Hill CDBG project, which exceeded the estimated cost by about $14,000. With limited time left to work the road before winter, council opted to ask the grant administrator, Susquehanna County Housing and Development Authority, to rebid the project with an eye on beginning it in the spring of 2018.
Council also discussed sending a letter of support to Rep. Jonathan Fritz (R-111th) regarding any identified improvements that could be made to the Route 11 and 492 intersection prior to the proposed major construction project on I-81.
The borough’s planning commission is wrapping up its final review of the proposed zoning ordinance update.
The Parks and Recreation Board has established a list of long range plans for both the Midtown and Blue Ridge parks.
The council’s finance committee provided a brief overview of the 2018 budget.
Proposed projects included in next year’s budget include: street signs, office equipment, health insurance for permanent borough employees, and funds for the proposed sidewalk project, along with several projects in the parks.
Council acknowledged the death of former mayor and councilman Earl Armon.

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