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Fire company to seek bids for air system

Published January 05. 2011 05:00PM

Keith Kibler, fire chief of the Star Hose Company, Emerald, attended the Jan. 4 meeting of the Washington Township supervisors.

He was at the December meeting and asked if money set aside by the township to buy vehicles for the fire company could be used for an air system. Secretary JoAnn Ahner said she would contact the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors to see if the money could be used for other capital equipment than vehicles.

She found that it could. However, the air systems will have to go out on bid by the township after the fire company prepares the bidding documents. The township will also be required to insure the equipment because it is a major purchase. It already insures the trucks for the fire companies. It was tabled until the documents are prepared.

Friedens Fire Company had talked to Ahner about duplication of services, but Fire Chief Duane Henritzy said the problem had been resolved. However, he and Joel Merkel brought two other questions to the supervisors.

They bill insurance companies for materials used at a fire or accident and are often turned down on the basis that it is a volunteer organization. Joel Merkel said he does the billing and thought if the township billed on letterhead it may get more results.

PSATS said it is often a bad practice because the township becomes a collection agency. Henritzy said they are often out at an event for three or four hours and pay for the materials used.

The costs have to be updated since the list Merkel uses from 1999 still has a flare at a cost of $2 and it is more now as are other items. PPL, towing services and the ambulance associations all get reimbursement, he said.

Supervisor Josh Friebolin said he wanted time to research the matter and the company should supply an updated list of costs.

Henritzy also talked to Ahner about the septic system at the firehouse. The 1,500 gallon tank was pumped and filled up in a couple days. There is serious infiltration but so far the location has not been found. Keystone Engineering was out to look at it and said when they find the leak the tank should be moved to a more level area.

"We can't afford this kind of cost," said Merkel. He estimated they spent $30,000 on the building in the last few years "and bingo does not pay that well."

Ahner said that may also fall under capital costs.

Supervisor Gerald Phillips said the sewage permit they have is good for two years. He suggested contacting Chris Knoll, the sewage enforcement officer, for guidance.

The Sanctuary at Haafsville which had requested to be named the organization that will pick up stray animals is not approved to take stray dogs. It has to be a licensed kennel, according to the Department of Agriculture.

Since the Humane Society is expensive, it was decided to give Haafsville time to get straightened out with the Department of Agriculture.

Sewer rental for district 1 has been increased gradually over the last three years to bring it in line with the rest of the system. By resolution it will now be $109 quarterly and $4.80 per thousand gallons of sewage.

Junk yard permits were approved for Craig Yeanish, Jack Follweiler, Clay Sauerwine, Alfred Hanna and Kathy Jones.

The Antioch Church of Christ of Philadelphia was turned down by the zoning hearing board for use of the White Christmas Tree Farm for weekend programs. Since then it has talked to neighbors and worked something out. It was stipulated that the church should return to the zoning board.

In making corrections to the minutes from the reorganization meeting, Friebolin said Sally Mantz was listed as a clerk and it should have been as assistant secretary-treasurer.

Phillips was not on the list for the work crew. That omission was also corrected. His pay will be set by the auditors.

In public comment Ed Ziegler said the minutes from the reorganization meeting should have included the cost of the engineer. He asked if the audit will be available to the public. It will be on the counter as soon as the audit is completed, said Ahner, and she will include engineering costs in the minutes.

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