Tunkhannock Twp. supervisors on Monday tabled consideration of a railroad crossing tied to a silica transload facility after new information was brought to their attention.
Supervisor Veto Barziloski said, “We’re trying to get as much information as possible before we make a decision.”
And then he opened the floodgates for comment from the public, with about 40 in attendance.
Resident Alice Strauss said she attended a county planning commission meeting in the spring attended by a representative of Reading, Blue Mountain and Northern Railroad.
“I don’t believe for a minute they can do what they say.,” she said. “It’s going to be a mess.”
Barziloski noted lightning hit signals near the crossing last Thursday, and backed traffic up quite severely.
“We have no agreement from the railroad about how to keep that open in case of a malfunction,” he said.
Other residents were concerned about health concerns, and Betty Ann Weaver Shaver pointedly asked the supervisors to “pass zoning now” and “require D&I Silica t5o be a good neighbor.”
Audrey Gozdiskowski said she was concerned about what people are exposed to including potential carcinogens, and retired Tunkhannock coach Don Davis wondered aloud, “Are you providing for the safety of your residents?”
“I don’t like it either,” supervisor Glenn Shupp said, but Barziloski acknowledged “We do have to follow the law.”
“Can’t the health of the community override that,” Davis snapped back.
Candy shop owner Eileen Barziloski said, “I love the kids of this county. Why give them a life sentence they don’t deserve?”
Supervisor Veto Barziloski said he was with her, but noted the issue would soon be out of the township’s hands unless serious public safety was breached regarding the railroad crossing.
The settlement agreement that was tabled essentially was to be submitted to the state Public Utility Commission and established that Tunkhannock Township, Eaton Township and Tunkhannock Borough were signing off on original protests regarding a signal switch that drops a safety gate across Rt. 29 at the intersection with Rt. 6 Bypass.
At present, where the switch is now located, a train entering the proposed side rail will trip it because of its proximity to then intrsection, causing the gate to drop blocking traffic while the train unloads sand at the proposed site.
Eaton and Tunkhannock Twp. supervisors and Tunkhannock Borough councile have openly expressed they are not convinced it will work.
However at its supervisors meeting last Tuesday, Eaton didsign the settlement agreement.
It did not come up at Tunkhannock Borough Council meeting Thursday night, Mayor Norm Ball said.
Back in Tunkhannock Twp. Monday, Barziloski encouraged everyone to take their concerns to the Wyoming County Planning Commission on July 16.
Among the wishes of Betty Ann Shaver Weaver was to find out if Tunkhannock Twp. could so0mehow tie on to Eaton Twp.’s zoning document, which led to a lively discussion among the three supervisors about whether they would support zoning for the towship.
Supervisor Barziloski said, “A township this size should have zoning, no question about it.”
In other business, the township also voted to revisit the issue of sewers around Lake Carey, and have its consultant draw up a new Act 537 plan mandated by the state Department of Environmental Protection.
The revision would take out a section recently approved for Maple Lane and Highland Drive hooking on to Tunkhannock Borough’s Municipal Authority sewer and water system, and return focus to Lake Carey.
Barziloski said a new document for DEP would be available for public inspection on July 16, and subject to 30 days public input.
During the supervisors’ regular meeting it was announced that the township received $46,000 more in Act 13 monies then it had budgeted.
They passed a resolution to allocate the funds to roads, parks police and township administration.
Supervisors also approved sign permits for Verizon at the Towne Plaza, and AR Welding off Rt. 6 eats near Mike Dobrinski’s.
They also signed off on a transsient sales permit for Jake’s Hot Dog Cart to be located near Jakubos Produce stand near Nimble Hill wine tasting room.
Supervisors were also apprised of Marcellus gas drilling activity about to be underway at Garrison 4-H in Washington Twp. and Karp 3H in Lemon Twp.
Applications for expansion of Fox Road Waterworks in Bardwell and at Mountain Energy behind Deer Park were also announced
During the township’s clean-up day, $905 was realized but with expenses of $2,002.
Despite the deficit, Barziloski said it beats the costs of having to pick up rubbish along the side of the road.
Roadmaster Ken White noted that 21 tires were also turned in.
In the Riverside Park Report, secretary Judy Gingher noted that the township’s purchase of the old lenticular truss bridge in Nicholson Twp. had been approved, and the bridge would probably find a home in Lazybrook Park by 2016.
Gingher said the rehabbing and move of the bridge to Lazybrook would be paid for by PennDOT using Federal Highway Administration funds set asidew for historical projects.