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Deposit money for facility use debated

Published May 16. 2011 05:00PM

Wayne Weidner, President of the Walnutport Playground Committee, told the council he was upset that the Carnival organizers will have to pay a $500 refundable deposit to ensure the facility, which will be used to cook and serve food, is cleaned up after the event.

Weidner said $500 for a deposit "is asinine." He argued that if there was something unsatisfactory about the cleanup, the council should tell him and it will be taken care of. President William Turk said that it became necessary to take deposits because there were problems in the past. Despite the fact that the deposit is refundable, Weidner still objected because he felt in addition to the amount being too high, how clean the place should be after use was also subjective.

"I have an issue with the $500, but not with a deposit," said Councilman Matthew Newhard. He added the deposit is not just for cleaning, it covers other things that might happen. Newhard asked Weidner what he thought would be a reasonable amount. After some discussion between Weidner and Council members, it was agreed that $50 a day would be reasonable.

Council discussed the results of a survey that was sent out to residents asking for comments on garbage collection in the borough. Council was impressed with the response and noted some of the major concerns, such as the cost Walnutport homeowners are currently paying for waste collection.

Sixty percent of the people surveyed do not want a bag limit, where people would be charged according to how many bags of garbage they put out for collection. Also, a lot of people were concerned about what to do with grass clippings. This is a futuristic problem, since, according to the Council, the time is coming where you can't put your grass clippings out because the landfills are not going to accept them - that, is on the horizon as close as 2013. The majority of people are, "OK," with recyclables being collected every other week, although some residents would like larger containers.

Tim Dennis brought council's attention to some unclear wording in the garbage ordinance that defines who can throw waste out for collection in the borough. For example, currently the ordinance reads only residents can set trash out. However, Dennis, who owns a property in the borough, but who is not a resident, thinks owners should be able to put waste out for collection that has not been transported from somewhere else. He also brought up two other sections in the ordinance that were ambiguous. Council discussed the sections and agreed to make the changes based on Dennis' suggestions.

In other business, Mike Wentz said that they were denied phase 3 Casino grant money, partly because they had money remaining from a previous grant. He said they were not "out of the picture," since he was told if people turned the award down, or did not need all of the money they were awarded, there was a possibility the money could still come to the borough.

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