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New map could impact 55 properties in Polk Township

Published July 13. 2010 05:00PM

"Where is the four-corner point?" is the question that seems to be the sticking point of the boundary line between Polk and Chestnuthill townships, with Chestnuthill having written Polk about the issue in light of Chestnuthill's plans to adopt an official township map. The four coners is where the four townships of Eldred, Ross, Polk and Chestnuthill meet.

That map, is Polk's understanding, could impact more than 55 properties, moving them from their long-time standing as Polk properties to Chestnuthill properties.

The deeds of those properties say Polk but the map, as reportedly most currently drawn by the Monroe County Planning Commission, would put said parcels in Chestnuthill's domain.

"If the deed says Polk, how can that be?" was a question posed during discussion of the matter.

The change would impact Polk's tax base, liquid fuels income and for the families involved, use of Polk's solid waste transfer station as well.

Polk solicitor James Fareri will contact Chestnuthill's solicitor. Chestnuthill "can't just annex property," he said.

The supervisors were in total agreement to pass Township Resolution 2010-5 to be signed by them, stating their "opposition to forced mergers and consolidation of local governments in Pennsylvania" as being proposed in House Bill 2431 and Senate Bill 1357.

Among their reasons for not consolidating were townships being "excellent fiscal stewards; No one has proven that bigger, centralized government is better or even more cost-effective than township government; …governments that rely on consolidated county-based governments generally have higher tax burdens than smaller governments; and...recent reports of financially distressed municipalities in Pennsylvanian are largely contained to the Commonwealth's large cities and urban areas" as well as other enumerations.

The trio also approved the adoption of a 25 miles-per hour posting for local township roads and an update to Polk Township's Emergency Operations Plan.

Chairman Brian K. Ahner reported that seal coating of township roads has been completed. He said the company "did a beautiful job" and did miles in just a few hours.

Supervisor Nancy C. May reported that the census is not yet completed but that the estimated figure for Polk is now around 8,000 residents. Census takers have been busy visiting individual homes.

A proposed non-litter ordinance has undergone revisions and will now be reviewed by the supervisors, probably coming up for a vote at the next meeting.

Announcement was made of a new electronics recycling program by the Monroe County Waste Authority. Information about that program is available on the entity's web site at: Supervisor Michael D. Hurley will review said information before the township makes any decisions regarding its involvement and possibly serving as a collection site and then transporting the collected items further.

The supervisors and the solicitor discussed a resident's complaint initially filed in 2008. A site visit at the time showed no violations. Said complaint has seemingly been reopened, but the situation includes an ongoing neighboring property use - that of a kennel - that was in existence prior to zoning so its use in grandfathered in.

A letter of explanation will be sent to the filer of said complaint.

The next regular Polk supervisors meeting is Monday, July 26.

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