After years of disputes about scrap metal, junk vehicles and even a pig raising operation; after numerous violations and citations, court rulings and fines of $624,000; East Penn Township supervisors say they've had their fill of trouble involving the properties fouled by Clair Troxell and Robert Balliet.
"This is it," East Penn Chairman Dean Kercsmar said during the township's meeting Monday. "He's (Troxell) laughing at the ones before us (the prior township board) and he's laughing at us."
Kercsmar said he plans to meet with Troxell. If Troxell takes no action to clean up the properties, the current township board is prepared to take the next step, Kercsmar said.
"We're going to execute on the properties," Kercsmar said. "It's a done deal."
After the meeting, township solicitor Jim Nanovic explained that by taking the step to "execute" against the property, the township will put the property up for sale. The first property to be targeted would be a garage owned by Robert Balliet, which is leased by Clair Troxell and used as a junkyard, Nanovic said.
The township has cited and fined Troxell for violations of its zoning ordinances involving various properties. Troxell contested the fines first with the Court of Common Pleas and also with the Commonwealth Court, which affirmed the validity of the fines. In recent months, Troxell made a $2,500 payment against the fines.
The strong stand by the supervisors regarding the Troxell/Balliet issue seemed to please the residents in attendance, but some also raised additional concerns about the level of police protection in the township. The township has two full-time police officers, and is covered by the Pennsylvania State Police when its own officers are not on duty.
At about 10 a.m. Saturday, resident Willard Doll a former supervisor was standing by a window in his house when someone fired shots into the window using a BB gun. Through the county communications center, Doll contacted state police, but they did not respond.
On Monday morning, East Penn Township Officer Daniel Magarelli responded and efficiently investigated and resolved the matter, Doll said. While he commended Magarelli's professional response, he was dismayed at the lack of response at the time of the incident, he said.
The supervisors took notes about Doll's report and said they would contact the state police to discuss coverage issues in the township.
In other matters:
Ÿ Resident Michele Beckett asked the supervisors to consider making a donation to the Carbon County Animal Response Team (Carbon CART) so that the organization can purchase oxygen masks which can be used to revive dogs and cats which are fire victims.
Ÿ The Recreation Board Fishing Derby will be held May 18.
Ÿ Township residents who wish to be added to the township's electronic mailing list should provide their email addresses, name and mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ÿ Jason Snyder was appointed to serve with the special fire police.