Monday, May 14, 2007

Recreation and maintenance of properties to be concerns of next Tarentum Council meeting

Entrance to the Tarentum Borough Building, 318 Second Ave.Tarentum Borough Council held a twenty-five minute agenda meeting this evening. At the agenda meetings the various borough committees publicly discuss and decide on the matters that will be presented for action at the next Borough Council meeting. The open committee process is a way of ensuring that the public is able to participate in the formation of policy.

At the time for citizen comments the sole concern raised was the absence of a council member. Four of the council members were present and four were absent. In addition to the borough officials present ex-officio there were about ten observors present.

The Administrative, Employee Relations, Finance Committee discussed two matters. The first had to do with the telephone system for the borough offices; the system is in need of expensive repairs. The committee will bring a motion next week to accept a bid for a new phone system for $5200, an amount on the same order of magnitude as the cost of repairs to the existing system.

The committee will also bring a motion to cancel agenda meetings for June, July, and August.

The Property and Zoning Committee discussed two matters. The first item was the demolition of three properties in West Tarentum. The committee will recommend accepting the bid of Tony Perry Contracting to demolish all three for a total of $29,998. Two of the properties are on West Seventh (the old auto parts store and a house next door to it), and one is a burnt house on West Sixth.

The second item was Ordinance 07-06 regarding Property Maintenance Penalties. This ordinance will increase the fine for not maintaining property to $600 and provide for jail time as well. This ordinance will be in addition to the bills and liens for borough maintenance of private properties already in effect.

The Parks and Recreation Committee discussed two matters. The first was purchasing a projector and screen to show movies in the park. The borough has received a grant for $7,000 for this purpose, but has also received a recommendation that a larger screen than originally proposed would be more suitable. The committee will recommend that the borough purchase a system with a screen that is 16 feet by 9 feet for $8384. The additional money needed is available in the budget for the Recreation Committee. The Borough is seeking funding from other sources for the movies, which may cost $250 per showing.

A crowd at the Tarentum skate park at 7:30 on a spring evening.The second item had to do with a request from Blank Skate Supply for an event proposed for the James E. Wolfe Skatepark. June 21, the first day of summer, is recognized by skateboarders as "Go Skateboarding Day". The proposal from Blank Skate Supply was to provide a series of free special events at the skate park on June 21, including free lessons, free food, and contests. The committee will bring a recommendation that the borough council turn down the request. The rationale seemed to be a concern for the problem of crowd control. Police Chief Vakulick stated that the skate park is already very well-attended.

The Parks and Recreation Committee will report the 2007 summer concert schedule to the Council at next Monday's meeting.

There was no report from the AVN/COG Committee, but the Council was reminded that May 25th will be the deadline for any CDBG applications.

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