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3 new zoning ordinances adopted

Published June 30. 2011 05:01PM

Three new zoning ordinances were unanimously adopted by Polk Township Supervisors though not without general discussion between residents and board members.

The first adopted ordinance concerns outdoor and open burning. It is allowed in the township by a responsible adult, someone over 18 years of age, when appropriate conditions are met, including, but not limited to by ordinance, having a screen on a burning barrel, having a hose available, making sure the burning takes place at a safe distance from any structure, is done between sunrise and sunset, and meeting other approved conditions such as favorable weather.

Permits are not required and campfires are exempted.

That ordinance will go into effect five days after it was approved, at the supervisors' meeting held June 27.

Codes/Zoning Officer Gerald Zurat was appointed enforcement officer.

The second ordinance pertained to yard sales.

Supervisors enacted that ordinance, also in effect five days after the Supervisors' meeting. It restricts the number of yard sales a property owner may hold to four and restricts the days to each event to three and the time from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

No permits are needed, although the question was raised, "Why not use a permit process for yard sales?" That concept was tabled for further review.

Education comes first, was the expressed thought of Codes/Zoning officer Zurat.

Parking was also a point of discussion. Who would, who should enforce the no parking in roadways or right of ways in conjunction with any yard sale. Is it the property owner, the person coming to the yard sale, the state police?

Being "responsible" is the key word was the final thought at this time.

The third ordinance, named the E-911 Street and Building Number Sign Ordinance, engendered many questions and comments.

Those questions ranged from "Who is responsible for naming the roads?" to how to handle a double driveway situation, to residents Jennifer and Tom Hill, along with their neighbor, Pastor Robert Kelly, not being happy with the second address mailed to them. They want their Doney Road address back.

If a driveway is shared it must be named. That is for safety reasons for emergency responders, such as police, fire, and ambulance finding the where help is needed was Fire Chief Jacobi's and others explanation.

The ordinance includes specification as to how building numbers shall be installed and what size and color those numbers shall be.

With the passage of those three ordinances, others that have been discussed are being formulated, including a Solar Ordinance.

Joe and Carol Heppa brought information and their concerns about a proposed solar farm. Among those concerns drainage problems, safety issues, and considerable depreciation of property value.

Also being worked on are the employee handbook, a lighting survey, and the codification of ordinances, which Supervisor Nancy C.May said is the next big project.

The board approved the purchase of a 1.01 acres tract of land, appraised at$25,000 at the intersection of Memorial and Smith roads for $1,000 and costs. Obtaining that property may help the township do some road alignment there to improve the safety of the area.

After a representative of the Radnar Relay Race came to Polk Township and shared information with the supervisors, the board voted to approve the 200-mile relay race coming through Polk Township.

The runners run in teams of 12, are used to running on trails, and the group has a certificate of insurance. That event will take place Oct. 7 and Oct. 8.

Also approved was the request by Beth Dale to again run and ice cream truck in Polk Township. She does get permission from each of the private developments she serves before entering them.

Engineer Russell Kresge shared that the Lower Middle Creek culvert work will include a road closure, about the end of July for about a month.

In regard to the Lower Middle Creek bridge and another culvert, PennDOT approval was received and he expects other approval shortly.

The board discussed a weight limit for Carney Road. Engineer Kresge was authorized to begin a study that must be done to act on the matter.

Residents living 450 feet from Carney Road can hear and feel tri-axles now using the road and there is great concern for the road being "chewed up" from these trucks.

The board reported the state is mandating a sign inventory report. Chairman Brian K. Ahner noted the involvement of time this mandate will take. The inventory seeks considerable detailed information and is due by Jan. 1, 2012.

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